Sleeveless Arms of Steel

Summer is quickly approaching and the tank tops are coming out. This doesn’t mean it’s too late to get into shape. A lot of arm workouts can be done in the comfort of your home with minimal equipment. Grab a yoga mat, a towel, some light weights or resistance bands and lift your way to slimmer arms. Here are a few exercises that may help you go sleeveless.

A woman is doing push-ups.

Body Weight

  • Push-ups: Start in plank position with your shoulders above your wrists. Bend your elbows and lower your body to the ground. Push through the palms of your hands until your arms are straight. If this is too difficult, try a modified version and place your knees on the ground and complete the motion.
  • Inchworm: Start standing with feet hip-width apart. Bend forward at your hips and place your palms on the ground. Bend your knees if you need more stability getting your hands to the ground. Walk your hands forward so that you’re in high plank. Your shoulders should be stacked directly above your wrists. Walk your hands back toward your feet and stand up. If you’re looking for more of a challenge, add a push-up.

YogaA woman is demonstrating the side plank exercise.

  • Side plank: Start in the plank position. Move your left palm to the center of your mat and roll onto the outer edge of your left foot. Stack your right foot on top of your left. Bring your shoulder away from your earlobe by lifting with your left palm. Stack your right shoulder directly above your left. Stack your hips and extend your right arm straight up, and gaze sideways or upward. Repeat on the opposite side.
  • Dolphin with one-leg lift: Start on all fours. Place your forearms on the mat, shoulder width apart. Curl your toes under, lift your hips and straighten your legs. Keep your shoulders over your elbows. Lift one leg high, hold for three seconds then repeat with the other leg.

Hand WeightsA woman is exercising with hand weights.A woman is exercising with hand weights.

  • Squat to overhead press: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold a weight in each hand and raise your arms so that your upper arms are in front of you, parallel to the ground. Keep your knees aligned over your ankles as you bend your legs to a squat position, stopping when your thighs are almost parallel to floor. As you extend your legs, press the weights overhead.
A woman is exercising with hand weights.A woman is exercising with hand weights.
  • Single arm reverse lunge and press: Hold a hand weight in one hand at shoulder height with feet shoulder width apart. Bring one leg back and bend at the knee until the knee brushes the floor. Press the dumbbell overhead. Pause and lower it back to your shoulder and then rise up back up to standing, pushing through the heel of the front foot.

Just starting out? Try modified versions of these exercises and build your way up to proper form to avoid injury.

Looking for a few more ways to bulk up or slim down? Visit one of BayCare’s Fitness Centers to learn more about personal training options and its benefits. Find a Fitness Center location near you.