Upper Body Workout Routine for Beginners
Upper Body Workout Routine for Beginners
Maximo Pascual here, and before we get started, I just really wanted to thank Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey for their amazing commitment in promoting health education, and also for allowing me this opportunity to help share these valuable fitness tips with you.
Now, today, I wanted to go over a simple upper body workout routine that can be done from the comfort of your own home.
Now, the good thing about this routine is that we will not need that much space, and there’s no equipment necessary, because we will be using only our body weight.
Now, some benefits from this workout routine is that it’s going to help improve your posture, increase the strength and stability of your core, and also help boost your metabolism.
All right, guys. Let’s get started with the first exercise.
For jumping jacks, we’re going to have our feet together and our arms at our sides. As I open up my legs, I’m also going to open up my arms, and then I’m going back to that standing position.
So legs together, arms together, legs separated, arms separated. Once you that down, then you can start doing it faster.
For the knee pushup, we want to put our arms on the floor, and we want to make sure that our shoulder is right above the wrists.
So if you put both arms on the floor with the shoulder right above the wrist, you should be with the perfect gap in between your hands.
Now, in between that gap, you want your chest to go in between your hands, as I’m doing here. So if my chest is going in between my hands, that means that my head and my face is well above my hands here.
So if I show you from the side view, shoulders above wrists, hands are separated. As you can see when I lower myself, my chest is going in between that gap, and look how ahead my head is.
Now, it’s possible for me to do the pushup in this wrong position where my face is in between the hands.
Yes, I could do the pushup, but we are not working out the targeted muscle group, and I’m going to put a lot of strain on my shoulders.
So I need to make sure that I position myself where my chest can be lowered. Another common mistake that happens is that when people lower themselves, sometimes they leave a gap here.
And that’s not good. You want to make sure that your knees, your thighs, your hips, your lower stomach and your chest is all coming down at once, and you’re coming back up.
Now, many of you might not be strong enough to go all the way down - and that’s completely fine.
If for right now you can only go down half an inch, we’re only going to do that.
I promise you guys, if you keep on doing this consistent enough, eventually, session after session, you’ll be able to get lower, lower and lower until you finally reach the floor and come back up.
For Superman reachouts, we’re going to feel this more in our upper back. In order to do this we’re going to lay down flat on the floor, belly down, and now we want to just lift up our chest and our upper abs.
Now, we have to be very careful that we don’t hyper-extend our back too much, because we might injure our upper back. We just want to comfortably lift up off the floor.
Now with our arms straight in front of us, we’re going to bring the elbows down, a move that you’ll want to pinch both elbows together behind you, and then reach and bring it back down slow.
Always trying to maintain the upper body posture the way it is, all the way up - chest up, upper abs up.
Now from the front view, same thing - belly down, completely flat. You’re going to lift up the chest upper abs. You’re reaching, and then you’re trying to bring the elbows together.
For shoulder pushups, it’s going to be similar to the knee pushups. We’re going to get on our knees; we’re going to separate our hands on the floor, about shoulder width apart.
You want to make sure that your shoulder is right above your wrist.
Now, unlike the knee pushups, we’re not going to be in a flat position. We’re actually going to stay on our hands and on our knees.
Now when I come down, I’m dipping my head now, kind of like in an angle, almost like you are going diagonally down towards the floor, so we can emphasize more on the shoulders.
Another thing is, you don’t want to have your elbows all the way out to the side. You actually want to tuck in the elbows a little bit.
You’re going to step back, and we’re going to drop our head towards the floor. This time we are maintaining a space here. Again, we’re not being flat.
So we’re going in, you bring the head in between both of the hands, and we’re pushing back up.
Now, if this is too difficult to reach the floor, then just go as low as you can for right now. Eventually as you get stronger, you’ll be able to bring the head towards the floor.
Now, from the front view, again, shoulder width apart, you want to make sure your shoulders are above your wrists.
Going to be on your knees, and then you’re coming down at an angle. Remember, the elbows tucked in.
For alternating superman, we’re going to feel it more in our backside - lower back, upper back area. In order to do this we’re going to lay down flat on the floor belly down.
Want to make sure your arms are straight in front of you and your legs are completely flat on the floor as well. So I’m going to lift up my left arm and my right leg at the same time.
What’s important is that you’re lifting up from your hips, so you have to make believe like your whole leg is a stick, so there should be no movement in your ankle or your knee.
Your whole leg is lifting up off the floor, like a stick, and so is your arm. So we’re lifting up opposite sides.
As you lift up, you’re also going to have to lift up your chest and your upper abs off the floor. So left arm, right leg, so we hold about two seconds, and we come down slow.
Then we switch: right arm, left leg, and then down.
For shoulder blasters, we’re going to stand tall, chest out, shoulders back. We’re going to have our arms completely locked out, and there’s only going to be movement from the shoulder joint here.
So everything else stays straight, and we’re going to raise both arms up to the chin, out to the side, and then down to the side; back up the side, in front of the chin, and then back out to the side.
So this is how this movement goes: 1, 2, 3 - okay. So now some pointers for this exercise: you want to do this as slow as you possibly can.
The slower you can do it the more you will feel it in your shoulders. So try not to do it fast - nice, slow motion here. Pause at the end of each movement - pause, pause, pause.
Nice, slow and controlled so we can really, really feel it in those shoulders.
For floor lifts, we should feel this in our upper back. We’re going to lay down flat on the floor, face facing up towards the ceiling; and now we’re putting our elbows on the floor.
Now, I don’t want to have my arms completely out to the side like this, like if I’m a cross. I kind of want to have my elbows in a little bit angled.
So it’s an in-between of not all the way in like this and not all the way out, but kind of in-between at an angle here.
Now what I’m going to do is, I’m going to drive my elbows into the floor to pick up my upper back off the floor. I’m going to hold it about two seconds, and then come back to the floor slow.
It’s a very short movement, so it’s very important that you do a full range of motion. So again, you go up off the floor by pressing down with your elbows, hold, and then come back down slow to the floor.
Once you make contact with the floor with your head, you come back up; hold; and come back down slow.
For the side pushup, we should feel it more in the back of the arm, the triceps. In order to do this, we’re going to lay down on our side. In this case I’m on my left side.
And with my left arm I’m going to grab the right side of my back. Now with my legs, I want to bend my legs where you’re only seeing my knees, and I want to be as straight as I possibly can.
Now I’m going to put my right arm right next to my left shoulder, and I’m going to pick myself up off the floor.
To pick myself up, I’m using my right hand to push, and I’m also using my left knee to push off the ground, so I can fully extend all the way up.
I’m going to lock out my arm, and I’m slowly coming back down to the floor. You want to make sure you just don’t plop down.
So push up off the knee, and the right arm, come down slow. All the way up, lock out, come down slow.
Now if this movement is too hard for you, just simply pick yourself up as high as you possibly can. If you can only do up to right here for right now, that’s fine.
As you get stronger, eventually you’ll be able to lock out that arm.
For tricep kickbacks, we should feel it more in the back of the arm, in the triceps. We’re going to be on our knees as far as we can - chest out, shoulders back.
You want to have your arms completely locked out, and you want the bottom of your hand to face away from you. Now, using our head, we’re going to hinge over.
So I’m sticking out my head. We’re going to cause my upper body to come over a little bit. But again, we don’t want to hunch over. So chest out, shoulders back, stick out your hip.
Now lean forward a little bit, and now you want to bring the bottom of your hand up towards the ceiling. You want to make sure you do a full range of motion.
So you want to go up as high as you can, and now come all the way down, only about half way.
This is going to be controlled, but you’re going to have to do it a little bit fast so you can really feel it. Just make sure you’re going up as high as you can up towards the ceiling.
For the tricep push togethers, we’re also going to feel it in the back of the arm, the tricep. It’s going to be similar to the tricep kickbacks.
We’re going to be on our knees, chest out, shoulders back. You’re going to stick out your hip a little bit and maintain this upper body posture.
You’re going to lock out your arms, but now the bottom of your hand is facing your hips. And now what we’re doing is, we’re going to try to put the arms up as high as possible.
We’re going to maintain the arms that way, and then we’re going to try to clap them together.
By showing you here from the back, almost like if you’re trying to touch your hands, but you’re not going to be able to because your arms are so locked out.
Again, it’s very important that you stick out your hip, your chest is a little bit over, and you bring your arms all the way up until you possibly can’t anymore, and now you try to clap them together.
For bicep curls, you should feel it in the front of the arm here in the bicep muscle. So in order to do that we’re simply going to curl one arm up, and bring it back all the way down slow.
From the side view, I’m standing chest out, shoulders back. I have my upper arm against my body, and I’m just lifting up my forearm and bringing it back down all the way down slow and controlled.
Now, when I’m curling up, I want to make sure that the upper arm does not shift forward. I have to make sure it’s completely straight right there, and I’m just lifting up the forearm.
Now, by me doing this, there’s really no resistance here on my bicep. So I’m going to use my opposite hand to create the resistance.
So as I’m curling up with my right arm, I’m using my left arm to kind of push down to create some resistance. So I’m curling up with my right, and I’m pushing down slightly with my left.
As I’m coming down I continue to push down with my left, and I’m trying to push my right arm up still, even though it’s coming back down.
And we’re going to maintain that resistance using the left arm. We switch sides, and using my left arm, we’re going to use my right hand here to push down on my wrist.
And I’m going to curl up and create resistance throughout the whole movement using my right hand.
We just went over each and every exercise of this routine, and I’m pretty sure you’re feeling a lot more confident about doing this routine alone at home.
Now, one big tip I can give you is, remember, you are a beginner, so you might not be able to master each and every exercise on Day 1.
But I promise you, if you’re consistent enough, eventually you will get stronger, more mobile, more agile, more flexible, and you will be able to master each one of these exercises.
All right guys. Till next time.