Gyms across Australia and New Zealand have been shut over recent weeks, with outdoor fitness equipment and classes also limited until very recently. While everyone will be happy when their local gym opens for business, the pandemic has given people a unique opportunity to take control of their own fitness. From YouTube fitness classes to bodyweight routines and backyard workouts, the humble suburban home can be your new fitness centre.
COVID-19 has been a challenging time for everyone, with social isolation and cabin fever experienced by many as an indirect result of social distancing. Our homes have broadened their scope of usefulness, transforming from simple abodes to office spaces, classrooms, and domestic gymnasiums. While there are no trainers to motivate you and procrastination is a very real threat, learning to workout at home is a great way to build discipline and work off any extra weight gained from increased food and alcohol intake during the pandemic.
Commercial gyms are used for many reasons, from cardio routines to yoga, flexibility training, and muscle building. While gym spaces allow you to access all sorts of fitness equipment in a single location, there's a lot you can do at home on your own terms. Popular cardio classes that use aerobic and dance routines can be easily performed in your living room, and your partner or kids might even want to join the fun. Online fitness classes have boomed during the pandemic, with YouTube, Zoom, and other platforms offering access to a diverse community of fitness enthusiasts.
When it comes to yoga and flexibility classes, the home environment is even more suitable. All you need is a yoga mat in a quiet corner, along with some gentle music and a clear mind. Once again, online classes can be a great resource for these routines, and once you've completed a few, you should be able to internalise and combine multiple poses. Flexibility is great in small doses, so touch your toes while making a cup of tea or do a quick five minute routine while waiting for the dishwasher.
Strength training is probably the hardest to perform at home, but it's still very possible. While you're unlike to have access to every free weight size imaginable, even a single dumbbell or heavy household item can be used to great effect. Instead of relying on large fitness machines, you can move your body to access and isolate muscle groups. If you want to be a purist, you can create perfect tone and build a lot of mass with bodyweight resistance training alone.
By using simple movements such as pushing, pulling, squatting, and bending, you can create the perfect body from the comfort of your own home. From push-ups and pull-ups to sit-ups and squats, classic bodyweight exercises are highly efficient and easy to do almost anywhere. As commercial gyms reopen across Australia and New Zealand, they need our business more than ever before. By combining the advantages of professional equipment and experienced trainers with home-made discipline and traditional exercise, you can emerge from the pandemic with a new approach to personal fitness.