Due to worldwide lockdowns, there are currently more people working from home than ever before. In fact, according to labor market experts, approximately 557 million people, or around 17% of the global workforce, adopted new remote working practices in 2020. As such, we have all had to learn how to adapt our living space to meet work requirements.

One significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic from a public health perspective has been the prolonged closure of gyms, which has deprived many people of the opportunity to exercise in an environment specifically designed for that purpose. According to a survey conducted by RunRepeat, nearly 40% of individuals who previously considered themselves devoted gym-users have switched to at-home workouts in 2021. However, many people simply do not have the space to accommodate a full workout regime at home. So, just how should you go about making the most of a cramped living space?

Use exercise equipment designed for smaller spaces 

Just because you do not have your own personal gym does not mean you can’t enjoy the full benefits of a comprehensive workout. There is a wide range of gym equipment which is designed for portability, and as such is ideal for use in a cramped space. Specifically, there are many brands which offer both treadmills and exercise bikes in foldable models. They provide the same benefits of building muscle, burning excess calories and enhancing stamina, but they do not take up prohibitive amounts of space in your home.

Alternatively, resistance bands can help strengthen muscles. They work for both the upper and lower body muscles. In appearance they are simply unobtrusive elastic bands which don’t take up space and do not require excessive maintenance. But their flexibility also means they can be used to target specific muscle groups by providing tension for the body to resist. As such, exercise bands are ideal for a workout regime in a cramped space.

Focus on body weight and resistance training

Body weight and resistance training are key elements of a healthy workout regimen. One key example of body weight training that does not require prohibitive amounts of space or costly equipment is squats. Whether it is basic body squats, jump squats or prisoner squats, these are a great way to build muscle, enhance stamina, and burn calories. The focal point for squats is in the upper thigh region, and the process couldn’t be simpler. All you need to do is begin from a standing position with your feet firmly on the ground, and then lower your hips slowly. Squats can be done anywhere, and do not require specialist equipment.

For a workout that focuses more on upper-body strength, try doing some push ups. This helps to enhance muscle definition of the pecs, triceps and deltoids. But perhaps the most effective form of exercise is the burpee. In effect, the burpee is a combination of the squat and the push up, with a few extra benefits as well. This offers perhaps the most well-rounded form of muscle exercise, as it works several key muscle groups at once.

Overall, the global pandemic has necessitated a reimagining of the way we exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, there are still plenty of options available to those who do not possess a gym membership. All it takes is a small amount of space at home, and a degree of willpower. A varied exercise regime, coupled with a healthy diet, can work wonders for an individual’s physical and mental health.

Sally Perkins

Sally Perkins is a professional freelance writer with many years experience across many different areas. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, Sally enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family and travelling as much as possible.


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