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Exercises for People That Live in Apartments

By Dana Tuffelmire

Living in an apartment pose a unique challenge when it comes to working out at home. You don't want to bother neighbors in close proximity with jumps and bumps, and your workout space is likely limited. Focus on toning exercises that take up no more space than an exercise mat and require little to no equipment. Aim to perform sets of 10 or more repetitions, resting a few breaths in between.

Upper Body

Work your upper body with free weights that can be stowed under the couch for easy access or body-weight exercises that don't require any equipment. Traditional pushups, wall pushups or knee pushups work your shoulders, chest and arms without requiring a lot of moving space. To work your triceps, grasp a chair, raise and lower your body to perform dips without weights. Using weights, bicep and triceps curls strengthen the front and back of your upper arm. Yoga poses like downward and upward dog poses or plank and side plank also build arm and shoulder strength.


Give your abdominal muscles a complete workout with little more than an exercise mat. Perform traditional crunches to strengthen your rectus abdominis by bending your knees and lifting your shoulders off the mat, using your abs to curl upward. Reverse the movement by pulling your knees into your chest to engage the inner layer of abdominal muscles, the transversus abdominis. Target the sides of your abdominals, the inner and outer oblique muscles, by lifting your left elbow to your left knee in a side crunch. Yoga poses like side plank, seated twist or triangle poses will strengthen and lengthen your obliques.


Lunges and squats work all of the muscles in your legs, including the thighs, hip flexors, hamstrings and calves. Perform a traditional lunge by stepping forward with one leg, pressing down until the front leg forms a 90-degree angle. Vary the lunge to emphasize different muscles by stepping to the back in a reverse lunge or to the side in a side lunge. Squats focus on your butt and thigh muscles and can also be varied by turning the toes away from the body or by raising one leg in front of the body as you squat.


After working all of your major muscle groups, a full-body stretch will help prevent injury, strain and soreness. Lie on your back on your mat, reaching your fingertips and toes in opposing directions to stretch your abdominal muscles. Alternately grasp each elbow, pulling it toward your head to stretch your triceps and shoulders. Perform a standing thigh stretch by bending one leg back at a time at the knee and grasping it at the ankle. Release your hamstrings by stepping forward with one leg, lifting the toes of the forward leg and bending slightly forward at the hips. A series of yoga poses, like the Sun Salutation, also relaxes the muscles you worked.

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