5 exercises to try if you want to train your arms without weights

Want to train your arms? Whether your goal is starting a simple daily workout or improving your sports performance, arm training can offer plenty of benefits. Training your arms can build muscle, improve bone density, burn calories, improve your posture and more. If you want to start an arm training regimen, it is important to know which exercises are most effective. Learning more about the best arm exercises can help you start strong.

When training their arms, people often use weights. However, this is not necessary. If you’d rather train your arms without weights, there are plenty of exercises available. These exercises will still engage the same parts of your body without requiring any weightlifting equipment. Interested in doing arm training without weights? Discovering some of the most effective methods for training your arms without weights can enable you to develop an exercise plan that meets your needs and goals.

How to train your arms without weights: 5 top exercises

  • Planking — Planking is a great static exercise for arm strength training. To plank, plant your hands and toes on the ground and straighten your body between those two points. This exercise is called planking because your body should form a straight line like a wooden plank. For best results, try to hold yourself in a planking position for as long as you can comfortably manage. If you’re having trouble with planks, you may have a better experience with modified versions of this exercise. One common modification is called forearm planking. Instead of fully extending your arms, rest your elbows against the ground. While forearm planks do not engage your arms as much, they’re still great for your core and shoulders. For a good balance, you can also try up-down planks. To do up-down planks, start in a forearm plank position and push up onto your hands one at a time before lowering back down. Repeating this motion is a great way to build strength in your triceps.
  • Pushups — Pushups are a core part of many different exercise routines. As an exercise that engages your arm, chest and core muscles, pushups are a great well-rounded exercise. When doing pushups, proper form is key. Start in a planking position with your hands on the ground shoulder width apart. Next, bend your elbows and lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor. At this point you can push back up into the starting position. When doing each pushup, make sure not to lower all the way to the floor. While your chest may brush against the ground, you should be resting your weight on your arms and feet. Try to maintain steady, firm motions with each repetition. The ideal number of pushups will depend on your physical condition and training goals. When you train with a physical therapist, you can collaborate on a personalized training plan designed to help you optimize your progress.
  • Arm circles — Do you want to build power in your shoulders and upper arms? Arm circles may be an ideal exercise for achieving your goals. To do arm circles, stand straight and extend your arms out to the sides. Make sure you have plenty of space available for this exercise. Once your arms are extended, start rotating them forward. Your hands should be tracing circles in the air. After making circles for a set amount of time, switch directions. You should feel the rotations in your shoulders, arms and upper back. In addition to building strength, arm circles are great for improving flexibility. As a stretch, arm circles tend to be an excellent warmup at the start of a workout session.
  • Inchworms — To do an inchworm, start by standing with your feet about hip width apart. Next, bend forward at the waist until your hands touch the floor. When all four of your limbs are connected to the ground, walk your hands forward until you are in a plank position. Try holding the plank for a few moments; then walk your arms back and return to a standing position. Like traditional planks, the inchworm is a well-rounded exercise that engages your core, hips, arms and more.
  • Triceps dips — The triceps is a large muscle located on the back of your upper arm behind the biceps. This muscle plays a crucial role in lifting motions and elbow extension. Want to specifically develop your triceps? Specialized exercises like triceps dips offer a great way to do so. You can start triceps dips by sitting on the edge of your seat. Keeping both hands on the seat’s edge, lower the rest of your body off the seat and bend your elbows. Instead of engaging your knees, use your arms to push back up. This dipping motion is typically repeated around 10 times each set.

Tips for arm strength training without using weights

When done correctly, strength training exercises for your arms can be highly effective. From increased endurance to a reduced risk of arm injuries, strength training offers plenty of benefits. To get the most out of your training, here are some tips for doing arm strength training without using weights:

  • Use variations — Have a favorite weightlifting exercise? Many of the most popular strength training exercises involve weights. Fortunately, they can often be modified for those who want to avoid lifting weights. If you want to continue reaping the benefits of a particular weightlifting exercise without actually using weights, consider finding a good variation. Your physical therapist will be able to guide you toward exercise variations that help you work toward your fitness goals.
  • Focus on body weight exercises — Body weight exercises are exercises that utilize the weight of your own body. Instead of lifting a dumbbell or using a machine, you can leverage your own weight to effectively train your arm muscles. Great body weight exercises include pushups and planks. By incorporating these exercises into your routine, you can build strength without needing any extra gym equipment.
  • Maintain proper form — Doing each exercise the right way is vital. Improper form can make exercises less effective and increase your risk of injury. By maintaining proper form, you can make sure you’re maximizing the benefits of each repetition. Your physical therapist can help you improve your form and sharpen your control over your body. This helps ensure that you’re targeting the right muscles and continuing to develop strength in your arms.
  • Go for high reps — Body weight exercises are sometimes less intense than weighted exercises. To make sure you’re getting the same workout, it can help to adjust your repetitions accordingly. For example, you might be used to doing arm circles with dumbbells in your hands. While this exercise is also effective without weights, you’ll need to do a few more rotations to get the same results. Incorporating more repetitions of each exercise into your routine can accelerate your training and help you build endurance.
  • Stay consistent — Routine is a crucial element of successful exercise plans. When you stay consistent with your exercise regimen, you can maintain a steady rate of progress. For best results, try to train your arms at least two or three times each week. Your physical therapist can help you adhere to a concrete schedule. With regular training, you can start to see noticeable improvements in your muscle functionality and toning.

Lattimore Physical Therapy can take your arm training to the next level

At Lattimore Physical Therapy, you can get hands-on guidance with your arm training plan. Our team offers a range of services designed to help you improve your physical condition and achieve lasting wellness.

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

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