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Home / Workouts / Beginners Body Weight Exercises for Women – Whole Body Strengthening Routine

Beginners Body Weight Exercises for Women – Whole Body Strengthening Routine

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Body weight exercises routine with Physical Therapist Michelle from This gentle home workout requires no equipment and is ideal daily exercise for general strengthening muscles in your upper and lower body and your core.

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What are Body Weight Exercises?

Body weight exercises are muscle strengthening exercises that don’t require resistance training exercise equipment.

Who are Body Weight Exercises Best Suited to?

Body weight exercises can be tailored to suit beginners through to advanced levels of strength and fitness.

Body weight exercises are:
*convenient
*readily modified
*equipment free

Basic body weight exercises can can help women to get the correct exercise technique before progressing to weighted exercises (e.g. mini squats).

Body Weight Exercises and Female Pelvic Floor

Women with or at increased risk of pelvic floor problems should ideally choose pelvic floor friendly strengthening exercises. This includes women with; weak pelvic floor muscles, previous pelvic surgery, prolapse problems, recent childbirth and/or pelvic pain.

This video includes exercises that promote pelvic floor friendly strengthening. Some women will find that the modified pelvic floor friendly version of ‘The Plank’ exercise in this video is too challenging in which case it should be left out of the routine.

The safety of strength exercises for your pelvic floor depends on your individual risk factors including; pelvic floor strength and function, body weight, pelvic floor problem such as prolapse, previous pelvic surgery including prolapse or hysterectomy surgery.

Safety Tips for these 5 Body Weight Exercises

This exercise video includes 5 body weight exercises.
These tips aim to help you towards pelvic floor friendly strengthening.

Body Weight Exercise 1- Mini Squats

Mini squats strengthen the thigh and buttock muscles

Tips
*Keep your squat shallow
*Keep your knees and feet about fist width apart
*Breathe out when returning to standing

Body Weight Exercise 2- Lunges

Lunging strengthens thighs, buttocks and calf muscles

Tips
*Avoid deep lunges
*Breath out with the return to standing
NB -This exercise is not suitable for women with or at risk of SIJ (sacroliliac joint) dysfunction

Body Weight Exercise 3- Wall Push Ups

Wall push ups strengthen the chest, shoulders, arms and core abdominal/trunk muscles

Tips
*Keep your feet sufficiently close to the wall to keep the resistance light to moderate
*Breathe out on the return when pushing your body back up to vertical
NB – If your wrists are sore this exercise can be modified by placing your hands upon and leaning on an exercise ball rather than the wall

Body Weight Exercise 4- Modified Plank

Plank exercise strengthens muscles surrounding the trunk including abdominal and spinal muscles, chest, shoulders and upper back muscles

Tips
*Keep your abdominal contraction gentle never strong
*Breathe normally throughout this exercise
NB – Avoid this exercise if you are at high risk of pelvic floor dysfunction or if your shoulders are sore

Alternative exercise to The Plank : Floor push ups for women

Body Weight Exercise 5- Floor Bridge
Floor Bridge exercise strengthens the buttocks, lower back and thigh muscles

Tips
*This is generally a very pelvic floor friendly exercise for most women.
*Breathe normally throughout this exercise and avoid holding your breath
*Keep your heels close to your buttocks to promote buttock strengthening and avoid hamstring or back of thigh muscle tightness

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23 Comments

  1. Hi Michelle, thank you for these exercises 😍these are really great as I can’t tolerate heavy exercises. Just wanted to know, are these exercises safe to do during pregnancy too?

  2. I used to be an athlete when I was a teen and was used to working out intense rigorous routines. Now that I have some years on me and got really out of safe, I would do yoga, walk/jog, go work out in the gym using equipment and end up injured. I would have to wrap my pelvis and legs with ace bandages and use ice packs and a heating pad to ease the pain from working out so hard. I mean I literally could not do anything for weeks and would be bedridden for a month. And after several surgeries, its hard to keep up with a healthy routine because I get injured and have to stop exercising all together. Looking at her routine is making me rethink the way I exercise. Maybe if I reduce how much and how long. Instead of intense workouts, allow my body time to get strong before I go walk/ jogging and running it can work. At least I can give myself more time to stretch and warm up. Instead of exercising using my old regimes from when I was younger, exercise smart for the 43 year old body I live in now. Smart exercise and reducing how long and reducing my days to 3 days a week can allow my body to build strength. I just don't want to get injured again and end my routine when my body is beginning to get strong. Maybe If I start light at home and at the gym, I can alternate so I can exercise both at home and at the gym. Maybe I will not injury my body if I do this. I think it can work. I just want to eat in moderation what I like, lose some major weight, and still have my ice cream. I just want to have a safe and injury proof routine so I won't have to quit because my legs got injured. I don't do new years resolutions anymore, but I do know I can rebuild my body strength by being smart and taking my time. I decided, this is not a race. This is a journey into good health. Besides, you can't race if you are totally out of shape. I think I'll try these age appropriate exercises to build my strength, endurance, creativity and do this for 1 – 3 days of exercise. God help me get into good shape the right way this time. Thanks for the video.

  3. Could you please tell me one alternative exercise for upper body/shoulders instead of that one with putting the hands at the wall and leaning towards the wall? All the walls at my house catch dark and big finger and hand prints! :/ (from the sweat in my hands I guess) I will really appreciate your help! And one more quick question, how many reps do u recommend per day for beginners, if one rep contains 10 to 15 of each exercises?
    Thank you

  4. I'm 57 with joint issues from my job. Repetitive motion, standing on concrete floors. Had therapy for different issues. Some trainers at the gym don't have a clue. I told them about my issues. The young lady would give me 12 lbs dumb weights or plates for squats and chest press. I told her that it was too heavy, I've worked out off and on for years. I have videos. The ones for dummies and they basically explained correct form, pilates and shaping up with weights. Even live classes and beginners yoga. Now my shoulder has been aggravating me and my back. It's one of the hiit workouts. I'd rather do walking workouts, qigong, tai chi and what you demonstrated in your video. I know my body. Low impact and stretching is better now than jumping. Easier on my joints and back. I'm not 20, 30 or 40 anymore 😁 thanks for the video.

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