Simplify your workout with these 4 bench-based exercises

Should the bench become your new best fitness friend? The workout world offers a ton of toning trends, swanky studios, and expensive equipment to choose from. But sometimes the simplest staple, like a basic bench, can boast better benefits than its fitness rivals.

By building your workout around a bench, you get back the top commodity that most can’t afford to sacrifice: time. Think of all the time that ticks away as you wander around the fitness floor. For exercise to be effective, your program must be efficient. Your sweat session loses power and potency when you’re waiting on machines, chit-chatting with fellow fit pals, or experimenting with foreign equipment.  

Make the most of your workout by simplifying it. Bank on a better, faster workout with this bench-based routine:


  • Stand on one side of the bench and place the hands on the seat’s surface. Wrap your fingers around the edges of the bench for support. The shoulders are directly above the wrists, the chest is right over the bench, and the feet are together.

  • Push through the hands and feet to jump off the ground and over the bench. Land lightly on the balls of your feet.

  • Move quickly, jumping back-and-forth for 30-45 seconds.

Waist Watchers

  • Start in a side plank position with your left forearm resting on the bench. Stack the legs and feet.

  • Align the left shoulder over the elbow, keep the spine straight, and elevate your right arm toward the sky. Adjust your gaze so you’re looking up at your hand. This will prevent the chest from caving forward.

  • Slowly dip at the hips, then use your core strength to elevate the body back to the starting stance. Once you perform 8-10 reps, practice on your right side.

Upper Body Blitz

  • Begin in a push-up pose with the hands shoulder width apart. The shoulders are directly above the hands, and the hips are strong to prevent sagging.

  • Lift the left hand and tap the top of your right hand. Return to the starting position, then move the right arm across your body to tap the left hand. Come back to center and perform a push-up. That is one repetition. Repeat 10 times.

Happy Hips

  • Rest the upper mid portion of the back on the bench. The knees are bent, while the feet are hip width apart and firmly planted on the floor. The hips are loose and bent. Extend the arms out to the sides for support.

  • Push through the heels, elevating the hips until they are inline with the torso and knees. Squeeze the glutes for two counts. Release and repeat 25 times. For an added challenge, rest a weighted barbell across the hips.

For best results, repeat this circuit three times.

Don’t let your workout weigh you down. Shed weight and wasted time by simplifying.

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