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Fun Playground Workout

Turn any park or playground into a gym with exercises that will make you feel like a kid again!
  • Exercise and Have Fun!

    Working out will feel like child's play with this easy exercise plan. The workout -- using standard playground equipment and gear -- burns calories and helps tone muscles. Moderate aerobic exercise also helps lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity. Just pick a pace that's comfortable for you.

    Fact: People who exercise with someone stick with it. So skip the gym this summer, grab a friend, and head outside.

  • Triceps Dips

    Place your hands (fingers forward) onto a sturdy playground object. Extend your legs out in front of you and brace your core. With your hips flexed, lower your body down and rise back up, using only your arms to move you. Focus on keeping your shoulders relaxed and your abs drawn in tight. Perform as many as you can.

  • Slide Push-Ups

    Incline push-ups strengthen your chest, triceps, and core. For this exercise, place your hands on a sturdy surface about shoulder width apart. Keep your body in a straight line with your muscles contracted. Breathe as you lower your body down, about a fist distance from the surface. Exhale as you straighten your arms and return to the starting position. Perform as many push-ups as you can, or compete with your partner to see who can do the most.

  • Decline Push-Ups

    This exercise is an advanced version of the incline push-up described in the previous slide. To do this exercise, find a sturdy object, such as a bench. In front of the bench, place your hands on the ground a little wider than shoulder width and set your feet up on the bench. Your head is tilted slightly downward. Keep your body in a straight line as you slowly lower yourself toward the ground and back up again. Try and do 5-10 repetitions.

  • Basketball Overhead Throws

    In a staggered stance, hold a basketball with both hands overhead. Hold elbows high and throw the ball to partner. Catch it in the same overhand position you used to throw it. Keeping your stomach tucked in to protect your back, continue to throw and catch as many times as possible over your head. Do for 3-5 minutes.

  • Step It Up and Back Down

    Find a 6- to 12-inch platform on which you can step up and down. Place one foot entirely on the step and then bring up your other foot, being sure to rest the whole foot on the step. Step back down and repeat. Use your arms as if you were walking briskly. Do three 5-minute intervals, alternating your lead foot.

  • Buddy Squats

    Stand facing your partner an arm's length away with feet slightly wider than hip width apart. Grasp each other's forearms. Hinge at the hips, and shift your weight back and down into the heels. Lower into a squat, preventing your knees from moving too far beyond your toes. Lower until your thighs are parallel with the ground. Hold for 1 minute.

  • Buddy Squats, Advanced Version

    Each person stands in a split-stance foot position with feet hip width apart and one foot slightly in front of the other. Balance on one leg and hold each other by the opposite forearm. Use the same technique as for squats, previous slide, and hold for up to 1 minute.

  • Jump This Way

    Hold jump rope handles at hip level, allowing the rope to move in a circular motion from your wrist joint rather than from the shoulders. Try to maintain a consistent jump sequence for 1-minute intervals. Do 4-6 intervals, taking breaks as needed.

  • Strike a Tree Pose

    Stand beside your partner, placing one foot on your calf or ankle. Avoid placing your foot against the inside of your knee. Hold your abdominal muscles in and press your hands together as you balance. Hold for 15 seconds. Do 4-6 times. Repeat with the other leg.

    See a partner workout video.

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