Around the world, businesses are being forced to close their doors to help halt the spread of COVID-19. And yes, that includes the gym. While you might have to skip out on your favorite group fitness class (Pssst! There are a ton of studios live-streaming classes for free right now!), you should definitely keep moving—especially when you’re self-isolating instead of commuting to and from work as usual. But let us guess, you don’t have a home gym? Shayna Schmidt, co-founder of Livekick, a video service for home workouts, and personal trainer, is here to break down how to set up your very own at home.
What You Need
Not a ton, according to Schmidt! She says, “All you need is a 6 ft by 6 ft square of space. Seriously, that’s it.” That’s about the size of a small bathroom. So even if you live in a shoebox apartment (ahem, me), you shouldn’t have a problem finding space–even if it’s in the living room.
Once you’ve found a spot to set up your home gym, you can start building your workouts. While Schmidt says that official gym equipment isn’t necessary, there are some “nice-to-have” items she recommends: If you can, get “a yoga mat and a set of dumbbells” (though, she says, “a set of wine bottles works just as well” as weights). Bonus: Reward yourself for working out by opening one of those bottles. Now that’s a workout I can get behind.
Schmidt also recommends taking advantage of items that you already own for your home gym setup. “A coffee table or ottoman works really well for tricep dips, Bulgarian split squats, and decline push-ups,” she says, and “A towel can easily replace a yoga strap.”
Got none of this stuff? No problem. “You can get some of the best workouts of your life with zero equipment,” says Schmidt, who recommends calisthenics, “a genre of fitness that utilizes gravity and your own bodyweight for resistance in order to increase strength and flexibility.” She says to think of it “like weightlifting, but instead of using external weights, you’re using what you’ve already got built in. The term calisthenics comes from the Greek words ‘Kalos,’ which means beauty, and ‘Stenos,’ which translates to strength. Strength and beauty–who doesn’t want that?!” Just search for “beginner calisthenics workout” on Youtube to get started.
What You Should Be Doing
With group fitness and gym trips out of the question, you might be wondering how to actually workout. If making up your own workout isn’t part of your social-distancing agenda, Schmidt recommends turning to fitness apps and live-streamed workouts.
Like “a yoga retreat but without the need to leave your home,” says Schmidt, Livekick is a platform that offers “at-home yoga, fitness, meditation, and general wellness classes on live two-way streaming video, as well as private memberships.” Plus, you can do classes “with friends from all over the globe!” Fitness and remote friendships? Sounds like the perfect social distancing activity if you ask me.
While most people are familiar with ClassPass, a service that lets you try out a variety of boutique fitness classes, not as many are familiar with their app, ClassPass Go. While you’ll have to forego the in-person fitness sesh, “ClassPass Go connects you to audio-based fitness classes,” Schmidt says. Classes range from “stretching and meditation to strength training and outdoor running,” according to Schmidt. Each workout is curated by ClassPass trainers and range in duration from forty to sixty minutes.