These are the best 15 exercises for men for them to keep fit and healthy. Having these exercises in your daily routine will help you stay active and prevent injury.
These exercises can be done at home or at the gym and involve minimal equipment. Exercises such as these will help you to stick to a workout routine and also help you with overall fitness goals whether that’s gaining strength, losing weight, staying fit etc. The list of exercises below are what I believe are the 15 most important exercises for men to do for maintaining fitness and health.
Squatting (to strengthen quads, glutes, and calves)
Squatting is a simple exercise to help strengthen your quads, glutes, and calf muscles. Perform a squat by standing with feet shoulder-width apart and toes pointed out. Bend the knees and hips to lower yourself down as if you were sitting in a chair. The depth of the squat should be determined by what feels comfortable for you; don’t let your knees go past your toes. Press up through your heels to return to starting position. Aim for three sets of 10 repetitions twice per day (AM/PM).
Lunges (for a stronger backside) 3. Lunges with arms overhead (for a more challenging exercise)
The lunge is a simple exercise for strengthening your backside and improving balance.
Perform lunges by standing with your feet hip-width apart, toes pointed out, hands on hips, and knees slightly bent. Inhale as you step forward with your right leg into a lunge with right knee bent at 90 degrees or until the left thigh is parallel to the ground. Exhale when you return to starting position while keeping a straight back and chest up. Focus on a natural rhythm during each repetition of this movement; don’t shuffle or drag your feet if they hit the floor to avoid injury. Aim for three sets of 10 repetitions twice per day (AM/PM).
Shadowboxing (for mass and fitness)
Shadowboxing is a form of exercise that uses a mirror to help you simulate a fight. Shadowboxing is excellent for developing muscle mass and improving the body’s fitness. Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes pointed out, hands on hips, and knees slightly bent make sure one side of your body faces the mirror. Inhale as you slowly move from side to side while keeping your shoulders relaxed and hands in fists at chest level. Exhale when you return to starting position and switch sides. This movement should be done at a slow speed with no punches thrown; it’s just for kicks or tapping on the floor mat if using one.
Push-ups (for increasing your upper-body endurance and strength)
Pushups are a great exercise for increasing your upper-body endurance and strength. To start, lie on the ground with your hands directly under your shoulders and elbows bent at a 45 degree angle. Your feet should be hip-width apart with knees bent and legs strong, but not locked. The sole of each foot should be placed flat on the floor.
The Plank-to-pushup progression (for building upper body strength and stability)
The plank-to-pushup progression is a great way to build upper body strength and stability. This exercise begins with the plank position, which requires you to lie face down on the floor, bend your elbows at a 90 degree angle under your shoulders, balance on your toes (or hands), and lift your hips off the floor. Next, slowly lower yourself towards the ground until you’re in a pushup position. Inhale when you’re lowering yourself down and exhale when returning to starting position.
Side Plank (for preventing injury)
Side planks are an excellent way to protect from injury by strengthening abdominal muscles and hip flexors while helping maintain a healthy spine alignment. Once in a side plank position, your body should be in a straight line from heels to shoulders. Lift and hold your hips up as high as you can without arching your lower back. Keep a straight line from heels to shoulders. Keep your spine neutral and abs tight to avoid injury. Switch sides during this exercise for more variety in tone and strength.
The Pullup (for a stronger back)
The pull-up is a body-weight exercise used to strengthen the back, biceps, and arms.
First, grab on to the bar with your hands just outside your shoulders with palms facing away from you. Hang with straight arms without locking your elbows and then lift yourself up until you’re fully extended. Hold this position for one second before lowering yourself down all the way down past 90 degrees so that your chin touches or goes over the bar. Repeat 10 times. If this is too difficult you can use assistance by placing your knees or ankles on something so they support some of the weight of the body, but still perform it as if performing an unassisted exercise
The Shoulder Press (for wider and more muscular shoulders)
The shoulder press is a great exercise for developing wider and more muscular shoulders. This exercise begins with the lying face up on a bench or against a wall, with your arms extended in front of you. Lift your arms straight up so that they are at an angle at about 90 degrees from your body; keep them straight, but don’t lock your elbows. With palms facing down and weighted down by the floor or some other object, push yourself up until you come to a standing position. For more of an emphasis on the upper shoulders, keep the elbows closer together during this movement than they would be if performing a different variation of the exercise.
The Bentover Row (for a stronger backside and bigger biceps)
The bentover row is a bodyweight exercise for strengthening the backside and biceps.
This exercise starts with you standing upright, holding a weight in each hand in front of your chest. Bend over at the hips until your torso is parallel to the floor, keeping your feet together and arms straight but not locked. Bring one weight up towards your chest, squeezing it with both hands as you grip it tightly, before lowering it back down to starting position. Repeat this motion 5 times while holding on to the other arm with your opposite hand for balance.
- The Plank progression from Elbows to Knees to Hands (to build core strength and stability)
The plank progression from elbow to knee to hands is a great way to build core strength and stability. This exercise begins with the plank position, which requires you to lie face down on the floor, bend your elbows at a 90 degree angle under your shoulders, balance on your toes (or hands), and lift your hips off the floor. Next, slowly lower yourself towards the ground until you’re in a pushup position. Inhale when you’re lowering yourself down and exhale when returning to starting position.
For more of an emphasis on core muscles and stability, keep all four limbs straight but not locked during this movement in order for it to be performed as if performing an unassisted exercise as opposed to assisted exercise with another weighted
Squat with Rotation to the Right or Left (great for core stability and rotational power)
The squat with rotation is a great exercise for building core stability and rotational power. This exercise begins by standing upright while holding a weight in each hand with arms extended straight out from the shoulders. Bend your knees so that your thighs are at a 90 degree angle, but don’t lock them. Slowly shift one weight forward to the outside of your left foot, rotating until it is directly below your shoulder. Then slowly shift the other weight to follow its path and rotate it forward into position on the outside of your right foot.
For more of an emphasis on stability and balance, keep both hands gripping their respective weights at all times during this movement in order for it to be performed as an unassisted exercise
The Squat progression (to strengthen your lower body muscles)
The squat progression is a great exercise for strengthening your lower body muscles and improving overall athletic performance. This exercise begins with the traditional, or “front,” squat position (which is a designated type of squat that has you standing upright and holding weights in front of you). Next, slowly lower yourself down into a parallel position until your thighs are about parallel to the ground. Keep your back straight and head up as you move into this first point. Then continue to lower yourself down until your hips are below or at the same level as your knees. Keep your arms vertical while keeping both feet on the floor during this process.
For more of an emphasis on stability and balance, keep both hands gripping their respective weights at all times during this movement
The Bench Press variation (to build strength in the chest and triceps)
The bench press variation is a great exercise for building strength in the pecs and triceps.
The bench press starts with you lying face down on a bench and your head aligned with your body, arms at each side of the bench, and feet flat on the floor. With a weight in each hand, raise them up above your chest so that they’re at eye level. Then lower one of the weights as you bring it towards your chest without touching it to perform a “negative” movement. Inhale as you bend your elbows to bring it down towards yourself, then exhale as you push up from this position back to starting position where both weights are once again at eye level before repeating on both sides.
The Dip variation (for bigger biceps)
The dip variation is a great exercise for building strength in the biceps. It is done by performing dips where you lay on the ground and use your hands to push up and down (usually two or three sets of 15-20 repetitions).
The Shoulder Press with a twist (to strengthen the shoulders, triceps and core muscles)
The shoulder press with a twist is a great exercise for strengthening the shoulders, triceps and core muscles. This exercise includes starting in an upright position while holding weights at each side of your body. Next, bring the weights up to shoulder height (arms bent at 90 degrees) before twisting (so that one weight goes to either side of you) and then pressing up with them above you head. Rotate back to starting position before repeating on both sides.
There you have it, the 15 exercises any man should know, do and master these in order to stand firm.
The best way for a man to maintain fitness is to exercise his body on a regular basis, doing movements that promote complete health. These 15 exercises are crucial for keeping your body healthy, fit and strong for life. Do them now!
We hope this article helped to offer some of the best exercises a man should know and add to their fitness routine. Let us know some of your favorite exercises for men in the comments below.