Lower-Body Workout to Survive a Gym-less Holiday Break

These five exercises will keep you in shape whenever you don't have access to a gym or weight room.

Single-Leg Squat Exercise

When college and high school athletes go home or on vacation during a holiday break, they often find themselves without a weight room for training. Never fear: You can still get a quality workout. (See STACK's Guide to Working Out on Vacation.) The following lower body routine requires just a chair, a towel and your body weight.

Bodyweight Jump Squat

  • Squat down until your thighs are parallel to the ground
  • Jump straight up into air by extending at the ankles, knees and hips while swinging your arms forward
  • Land in an athletic stance with your arms back, and start sinking into your next rep

Sets/Reps: 4x10

Perform with a barbell for an additional challenge

Plyometric Split Squat

  • Stand with one foot forward and one foot back
  • Lower yourself until you have a 90-degree bend in both knees
  • Jump up, switching position of feet in mid-air
  • Land with soft knees and begin lowering yourself into your next rep

Sets/Reps: 4x20

Single Leg Squat

  • Stand on one foot, then squat down until your butt hits a chair
  • Stand back up
  • Use a chair that lets your thighs be parallel to the ground when you squat down
  • If the move seems too easy, remove the chair

Sets/Reps: 4x6-10 each leg

Slide Curl

  • Lay on a wood or tile floor with your heels on a towel
  • Pull your heels toward your body while simultaneously raising your hips in the air
  • Hold at the top for a second, then slowly straighten your legs while simultaneously lowering your hips back to the ground

Sets/Reps: 3x12

Single-Leg Hip Extension

  • Lie on your back and bend one knee so that your heel is about 6 inches from your butt
  • Drive off heel of planted leg to raise both hips into the air
  • Hold at the top for two seconds, then slowly return back to starting position
  • Progress to placing your foot on a sturdy object like a chair. Eventually you'll be able to use an unstable surface, like a medicine ball or a stability ball

Sets/Reps: 3x12 each leg

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