Expert Tips for Exercising at Home
Apr 10, 2020 Cara Martinez
With millions of people across the nation now working from home and many gyms and workout studios closed, Cedars-Sinai physical therapist Josh Chambers says staying active and mobile is more important than ever.
"Changing from being active to living a more static, sedentary lifestyle can contribute to flare-ups of previous musculoskeletal injuries, as well as to the onset of new pain and stiffness," says Josh. "It’s also important in this time where respiratory health is vital, to stay mobile through activities like daily walks, online workouts or a home routine."
To help maintain energy, flexibility and stamina, Josh has created the following at-home exercise routine, which can be easily modified based on individual needs.
Side-lying clamshell to strength the buttock
While lying on your side with your knees bent, lift the top knee while keeping your feet together. Do not let your pelvis roll back during the lifting movement. Repeat three times for 30 seconds each, focusing on activating the buttock muscle.
Side-lying hip abduction to strengthen the buttock
While lying on your side, slowly raise your top leg to the side. Keep your knee straight and maintain your toes pointed forward the entire time. Keep your leg in line with your bottom. The bottom leg can be bent to stabilize your body. Repeat three times for 30 seconds each, focusing on activating the buttock muscle.
Straight leg raise to strengthen hip flexors
While lying on your back, raise your leg with a straight knee. Keep the opposite knee bent with the foot planted on the ground. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three totals.
Standing heel raises to strengthen ankles and calves
While standing, raise up on your toes as you lift your heels off the ground. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three total sets.
Toe raises to strengthen ankles and the tibialis anterior muscle
In a standing position with your feet on the ground, raise up your forefoot and toes as you bend at your ankle. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three total sets.
Squat with hip hinge to strengthen buttocks
When squatting, bend over the waist, tighten your stomach muscles by drawing in your navel and keep your back straight while bending at your hips. This will protect your back from excessive loads. Your buttock should move as if you are going to sit on a chair, while emphasizing your weight going to your heels. Also, for good knee alignment, do not let your knees pass in front of your toes and keep your knee in line with your second toe (next to the big toe) as it bends. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three total sets.
Serratus wall side to strengthen arms
Place your forearms and hands along a wall so that your elbows are bent, and your arms point towards the ceiling. Slide your arms ups the wall focused on bringing the bottom tips of your shoulder blades under your armpits. Then, return to the original position. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three total sets.
Bilateral shoulder external rotation with band for strengthening shoulders
Roll a towel (optional) and place it between your waist and your elbow on both sides of your body. Hold a band (optional, exercise can be done without one) with your palms facing upward toward the ceiling. With your elbows at your side and your arms bent at a 90-degree angle, pull your hands away from each other while squeezing your shoulder blades and back together. Repeat 10 times to complete one set. Complete three total sets.
Walking for endurance and cardio
Start a walking program if you are comfortable being outdoors. If you come into contact with anyone, remain at a 6-foot distance. For those unable to leave their home, Josh recommends creating a walking pathway within the home to maintain or improve cardiovascular endurance.