Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
woman stretching her legs in activewear
woman stretching her legs in activewear
Original Illustration by Her Campus Media
Wellness > Health

10 Workouts You Can Do from the Couch

Summer is here, and whether or not you’re staying at home it’s ideal to feel confident and and good in your skin. That Zaful tie dye suit you never got to wear over spring break is calling to you from storage, and that Triangl neon set is flirting with you through computer ads. After a few months of huddling up on your couch, it makes sense if you want to continue with your Outer Banks binge and never leave the cushions. Who really wants to trade lazing around for weights and yoga mats? If that’s the case, I got you.

With some help from fitness instructor and UConn student, Jackie Forget, and Instagram fitness coach, Cali Fuller, I present to you a list of 10 exercises you can do from anywhere on your couch. It’s the best of both worlds. You will actually have to move a little from your horizontal position, but I promise not too far.

Russian Twists 

Start by sitting up with your knees bent and pressed together. Your heels should be together and closest to you, while your toes are the farthest. If you were to be looking at yourself in a side mirror, it should look like there is a triangle made by your butt, knees, and heels as the points. Engage your core and slowly sit back slightly so that instead of being upright at a 90 degree angle, you are now at a 45 degree angle. Pretend you are holding something (or actually grab a pillow or the remote if it helps) and twist from side to side, touching your object to the other side of the couch. Power your core, so that is the motor of the movement. 

Shoulder Taps

Take a high plank with your feet on the ground and your hands underneath your shoulders on the edge of the couch. Your core should be engaged, meaning that “your navel is to your spine,” Jackie says. You want your body to be straight. Jackie also recommends spreading your fingers apart slightly to help distribute weight and to take some of the pressure off of your wrists. Without rocking your hips, take one arm and tap the opposite shoulder. Alternate doing this. 

Scissor Kicks 

Move to sitting on the edge of the couch with your legs hanging off. Lean back to a 45 degree angle, and let your legs float up. Engage your core, using that to power you. Slowly scissor each ankle over the other. Pretend you are using your scissor legs to cut away all the bad vibes from your space. 

Tricep Dips 

Position yourself so that your hands are slightly behind you, holding you up on the edge of the couch, with your butt almost touching the ground. Your legs should be straight out in front of you with your heels on the ground. Your shoulders should be directly over your hands. This exercise is working arms and shoulders, so engage them. Let your legs relax for the moment because they will get their turn later. Let your hips drop and bend your elbows to a 90 degree angle putting your butt closer to the floor. Slowly push back up. 

Elevated Push-Ups

Turn to face the couch head on—both literally and figuratively because it’s time for push-ups! Position both hands on the edge of the couch with arms straight and shoulders over hands. Your body should be straight with your legs behind you and the balls of your feet on the ground. Slowly, using your arms and core, lower yourself by bending your elbows to a 90 degree angle. Make sure to keep your back straight when doing so, and then push back up. 

Pillow Clams 

Now that those push-ups are done, you get a little form of a break, and can get back on the couch. Lie down so that you are on one side, holding your upper body with the elbow of the side you are on. Place a pillow in between your inner thighs with legs slightly bent and in front of you. This exercise works for your inner and outer thighs, so make sure to engage ‘em! Squeeze and un-squeeze the pillow with your top leg as the working one. When you release, your knee should be opening upward and out like a clam. Alternate once done with a set. 

Pillow Squeezes 

While, on the couch sit back up slightly so that your weight is on your hands behind you. Bend your knees up, so that now you are in a position as if tanning on the beach and someone is going to take a picture of you. Place the pillow from before in between your knees this time. Look at the pillow and pretend it is your ex—then crush your ex as hard as you can, engaging and squeezing your inner thighs. 

Glute Bridges 

Friends, this is the go-to exercise to build that booty. Position yourself so that you are laying down, but your knees are still bent upward. Firing up your glutes (AKA butt muscles), use them to thrust your hips to the sky… or your living room. Lower back slowly. 

Single Leg Hip Thrusts 

Similar to glute bridges, these take place in the same position. This time, instead of both glutes  pushing up, only one will be doing the work. Start with your preferred leg (I recommend getting the weaker one over with) and lift the opposite foot off the ground so that it is facing upward, making a 90 degree angle with the couch. Power the leg left on the couch to thrust your hips up. Slowly lower and repeat with the other leg after the first set. 

Split Squats

Yes, you will have to stand up for these. Position yourself facing away from the couch edge, standing up. Take one leg, and put the ball of your foot on the edge of the couch so that your knee is facing the ground and is halfway between you and the couch. Use the opposite leg to bend and straighten, making sure that knee is directly over your toes when you bend. Once you are finished with that leg switch to the other. 

Aaand repeat! For more workouts from Jackie and Cali follow @foodbyjackie and @califullerfit on Instagram!

I am a Journalism and Philosophy double major at the University of Connecticut. I love food, fashion, fitness, and traveling!