Everyone thinks chair exercises are for old people who don’t have enough balance to stand while exercising. Well think again. Everyone who has taken my chair class tells me they couldn’t walk for three days after because they were so sore. Try some of these moves at home with your family or at the office, and leave your excuse of not getting to the gym behind.
Face your chair, and warm-up by marching in place, tapping the seat of the chair with your feet. Continue to march, but tap the handles or arms of the chair. Keep going, but tap your left foot on the right handle so you are forced to twist and rotate.
Stand sideways to the chair and kick your leg above the back. Then lunge to the side and touch your ankle. Repeat as many times as possible. Then turn and try the other side.
Back the chair against a wall or desk, put your hand on the arm rests and do deep, low push-ups. Stay in that position, but hold yourself in a plank. If you can, try a one-footed plank. Or tap your right knee to the left elbow, across and underneath your body. Or do the same side and really swing your hips.
Stand up as if you were going to sit down, but don’t. Take one foot off the floor or place it on top of the other, and do one legged squats. Go all the way down to sitting, and all the way up to standing all while on one foot. Really. Do more. It feels good. Now switch legs. The physician who edits my blog said “I always think that it is hilarious when you say that it feels good. I’m not sure if you’re trying to convince us or if you think that it does feel good, in a sadistic way.” What do you think? ;0)
If you want more leg work, put one leg up on the chair and do one-legged lunges. Be sure to have good posture all the while. Now switch legs. Jump around the chair in three jumps or less. I can barely do this but it’s interesting to experiment with.
If your chair is super sturdy, try tricep dips (toes off the floor, fingers pointing down, arms bend then straighten). In this position, while keeping your arms straight, raise and lower your hips. You will suddenly feel your hamstrings. Extend a leg out to the side for a harder variation.
Run in place, tapping the top of the chair like a soccer ball drill. Lunge next to the chair and swing your leg over the top, both directions. Switch sides.
Similar to the bathtub post, do side planks, where your hips are raised and lowered to the ground.
Finish by lying on the floor and putting your feet up which I detailed here. Be psyched! You kicked your own butt and are getting stronger, all for free right there at home or the office!