Can You Build Muscles With Bodyweight Exercises?

Bodyweight exercises are seen as simple exercises. As such, some people don’t do them when they want to build muscles. They consider lifting weights. However, bodyweights exercises can build muscles. But, you have to do more reps and make the exercises more intense to build the muscles. In this article, you will read more about building muscles using bodyweight exercises. The exercises are branched under bodyweight back exercises, shoulder exercises, chest exercises, and more.

What Are Bodyweight Exercises?

Most bodyweights exercises are done without the use of a gym machine. These exercises involve the use of your body weight as resistance. As such when doing body weights, you will find yourself, pushing, pulling, and jumping.  Below is a list of some bodyweight exercises.

Bodyweight Back Exercises - burpees workoutNote that some of the body weights mentioned above have a lot of variations. For instance, squats, burpees, push-ups, and rows have a lot of variations. Hence, those variations also fall under bodyweight exercises.

Explosive Bodyweight Back Exercises

Your back is like a conjunction of your body muscles. Almost all the muscles are linked to your back. That is your neck, arms, chest, hips, abs are linked to the back muscles. As such, building back muscles is important to build the back muscles. Interestingly, most people think of using gym equipment to build their back muscles. But you can build and strengthen your back muscles successfully by doing the bodyweight exercises. You can make the exercise more intense by increasing the reps and also making them more difficult.  Let’s go through the explosive bodyweight back exercises.

Wide Grip Pull-Ups

If you want to hit a lot of muscles at the same time, you can try wide grip pull-ups. This exercise targets the back, arms, and shoulders. In addition to that, it also exercises the core and also improves the handgrip. As you pull up your body, your lats get a good exercise.  Remember that to build these muscles you have to do more reps to increase the intensity of the exercise. Follow the steps below to build your back muscles;

  1. Grasp the pull-up bar with your palms wider than the shoulder-width apart. Your palms must be facing away from your body and make sure your arms are not bent but straight.
  2. Pull up your body towards the bar and cross your legs as you go up
  3. Pull yourself up and make sure that your chin is up above the bar.
  4. Then hold on to that position for 2 seconds before lowering yourself to the starting position.
  5. To make the exercise more intense and challenging, do more reps

Scapula Pushups

Bodyweight Back Exercises - scapula push-upsThe scapula push-ups target the serratus anterior muscles. In addition to that, it also exercises the shoulders and muscles around the neck. Thereby, protecting the neck from injuries. To do the exercise follow the steps below

  1. Start by being in a high plank position. Your body must be in a straight line from your head to the heels.
  2.  Then squeeze shoulder blades to lower your body
  3. Spring back to the plank position before reaching the ground
  4. You can do 3 sets of 20 reps

Bodyweight Shoulder Exercises

Your shoulders help you to carry objects from one place to another. As such you need to strengthen them and to also build muscle mass. There are many bodyweight shoulder exercises that you can do to build muscles. Below are some of them

Pike Push-Ups

The pike push-ups target the shoulders, serratus anterior, and upper back. Besides these upper body muscles, the exercise is also good for exercising triceps and arms. To do he exercise follow these steps;

  1. Start by being on your fours.
  2. Your hands must be planted on the floor with palms facing down.
  3. Lift your butt up and balance with your toes and palms. Make sure that your arms are straight. Your body must make an upside-down V.
  4. Bend your elbows to lower your head towards the floor.
  5. Push back your head before reaching the floor.
  6. Then repeat until your body is on fire.

Handstand Push-Ups

Bodyweight Back Exercises - Handstand Push-UpsThis is one of the difficult exercises but it is too easy to gymnastics. The handstand push-up is a high-intensity exercise that targets the deltoids, pecs, latissmus dorsi, back extensor and trapezius. It works the main back muscles. Thus strengthening and building muscle mass. In addition to that, the arms and triceps also get engaged. Follow these steps to do the handstand push-ups;

  1. Use the wall to balance yourself as you stand on your hands.
  2. Stand on your hands; a bit wider than shoulder-width.
  3. Squeeze your hips, abs, and glutes before lowering your body.
  4. Lower your head down keeping your elbows’ angle at 45 degrees.
  5. Push back your head before it reaches the floor.
  6. Repeat 10 times or more.

Bodyweight Back Exercises (No Pull Up Bar)

Superman

The superman exercise is good for exercising the back muscles such as the erector spinae. In addition, it also works the glutes and hamstrings. These muscles are connected to the back muscles. They are likely to have a negative impact on back muscles if they are weak. Below are the steps to follow to do the Superman exercise;

  1. Lie down on the floor with the hands straightened in front of you.
  2. Raise your arms and legs simultaneously. Your chest must also be off the floor.
  3. Keep yourself in that position for a minute
  4. Repeat the exercise for 3 to 5 times

Bodyweight Back Exercises Bodybuilding

As you work on maintaining your muscles, you can do several bodyweight back exercises for bodybuilding. Such exercises are good for joints, bone mass, and for building muscles. Below are some exercises that you may consider.

Reverse Plank

Bodyweight Back Exercises - Reverse PlankThe interesting thing about the reverse plank is that it looks difficult but it as an easy exercise that can be done at home. This exercise targets lower back, glutes, and shoulders. To do the exercise; follow the steps below;

  1. Lie on the floor on your back.
  2. Place your arms to your sides with psalms planted on the floor and facing downwards.
  3. Balance with your heels and hands as you lift your body to form a straight plank.
  4. Stay in that plank position for a while.
  5. Bring your body down to the starting position and repeat.

TRX Row

The TRX row is good for building back muscles. In addition to that, it strengthens the lower back, spinal erectors and shoulders. Follow the steps below to do the exercise;

  1. Grab the handles and position your self by leaning back from the straps.
  2. Pull your body towards the straps
  3. Repeat the move and squeeze top back muscles

Bodyweight Chest Exercises

The bodyweight chest exercises are good for strengthening and building chest muscles. A strong chest makes it easy for other body parts such as shoulders and arms to move. Below are some exercises that you can do.

Side To Side Push-Up

This exercise works the chest, pecs, and deltoids. In addition to that, your triceps also get worked. Below are the steps to follow;

  1. Get your body to a traditional push-up position, placing your hands wide apart more than a shoulder-width position.
  2. Lower your body and lean to the other side of the body
  3. Hold on to that position for seconds and then go back to the starting position.
  4. Repeat before changing to the other side of the body.

Bodyweight Back Exercises - Side To Side Push-UpDiamond Push-Ups

This is another push-up variation that is good for building chest muscles. In addition to that, it also exercises the triceps and shoulders. To do the exercise, follow the steps below

  1. Get your body to a traditional push-up position with your hands making a triangle using the thumb fingers and index fingers.
  2. Lower your body towards the ground and push back to the starting position.
  3. In it is advised to exhale when pushing back to work against gravity.
  4. Do 4 sets of 15 reps.

Bodyweight Bicep Exercises

You can pump up your arms with the bodyweight exercises. The exercises can help to improve muscle mass and arm strength. Having strong biceps makes it easy to do day to day activities such as lifting objects and more. Below are some bodyweight bicep exercises to do at home or at the gym;

Chin-Ups

Chin-ups are good for targeting entire upper body muscles. However, the biceps receive a good workout when you do the chin-up exercise. To do it follow the steps below;

  1. Grasp the pull-up bar with your palms at shoulder width apart.
  2. Make sure that your arms are straight as you hang to the pull-bar.
  3. Pull up your body and make sure that your chin pass the pull-up bar.
  4. Lower your body to the starting position.

Bodyweight Back Exercises - Chin-UpsResistance Band Bicep Curls

This is a simple exercise but most effective in building the bicep muscles. In addition to that you can do this exercise anywhere To do it, follow the steps;

  1. Start by kneeling down to sit on your heels
  2. While seated keep your upper body straight.
  3. Tuck or hook the resistance band underneath the right knee and hold it with your right hand.
  4. Keep your arm folded as pull up the resistance band towards your shoulder.
  5. Do several reps before changing the bend to the other side.

Final Thoughts

Doing bodyweights can build your muscles. As discussed above, as you do workouts such as body back exercises, make sure that you challenge yourself. Do the difficult variations and also increase the reps where necessary to make the bodyweights exercise more intense. In addition, making the exercises more intense challenges the body. Revisit the text above as you build the body muscles.

Which bodyweight exercise gives you explosives? Share your experiences

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