No Equipment Home Workout

By Jessie Ruiz and CrossFit Austin – December 31, 2018
Photography by Brian Fitzsimmons


Jesse is a Crossfit Level 1 Trainer and currently completing an OPEX CCP Level 1 certification, and also has a degree in Exercise and Sports Science from Texas State University. | 
Instagram: @designedcoaching
CrossFit Austin
8708 South Congress Avenue, Bldg. C Austin, TX 78745

Couch Exercises

1) Elevate Split Squat

  • Either point your toe or flex your foot for placement, whichever is most comfortable. 
  • Keep your hips and shoulder square, rib cage pulled down to brace your core.
  • Use a tempo of 3 seconds down and 1 second up to teach the body control, coordination and balance.
  • Perform 10 reps on each leg, resting 30 seconds to 1 minute if needed. Breathe in going down and breathe out coming back up.
  • A substitute for this is a regular split squat from the floor.  

2) Bodyweight Hip Thrusters

  • Place your middle back onto the the edge of the couch.
  • With a hip width stance, arms crossed, hinge at the hips, bringing your chest forward.
  • Pause at the bottom and then push through your heels, extending through the hips. Breathe in going down and breathe out as you push your hips back to starting position.
  • Keep the rib cage pulled down to brace your core.  
  • Incorporate a tempo of 3 seconds down and 1 second up to teach control through the movement.  
  • Perform 3 sets of 20 repetitions with a 30 second to 1 minute rest. 
  • A substitute for this is a glute bridge from the floor.   

3) Straight Arm Plank

  • Place feet onto the couch in either a flexed or extended toe position.
  • With arms extended, be sure to “stack your joints,” meaning wrists beneath shoulders, and slight chin tuck.
  • Spread your fingers wide while pushing through your finger pads. *Avoid sagging at the hips, keeping your body parallel to the ground. 
  • Perform this movement for 30 seconds to 1 minute for 3 sets, resting for 30 seconds to 1 minute in between. 
  • *To increase the difficulty, incorporate an alternating knee to chest motion, keeping the rib cage for appropriate core bracing. This can be done at 10 reps each side for a total of 20 reps, for 3 sets with at least 1 minute rest in between sets.  

4) Dolphin Plank

  • Start with forearms on the couch, arms and feet shoulder width, palms facing each other, while on the balls of your feet.  
  • Pike your hips up, pushing and extending through your shoulders. Pause at the top of the pike, return to the starting position. Inhale from the start position and exhale when piking. 
  • Perform 15-20 reps for 3 sets, resting 30 seconds to 1 minute in between sets. 
  • *If the incline is too much, perform the movement on the floor. 

5) Side Lying Leg Raise

  • From a side plank position, make sure your elbow is beneath your shoulder, fingers spread wide and pushing through the finger pads.  
  • You’ll bend the inside knee, maintaining a straight line from your ear to ankle, outside arm extended towards the ceiling and neutral head.  
  • Inhale and exhale as you raise your leg away from the midline, pause and repeat.  
  • Perform 10 reps each side, for 3 sets, resting 30 seconds if needed.  
  • *Focus on pushing through your forearm and hand, extending through the shoulder and don’t let your hips sag. (If the leg raise is too challenging, perform the movement minus the leg raise for a static hold, 20-30 seconds each side.) 

Upper Body

6) Dips on the Couch

  • You can perform this with your fingers pointed away from the body or by placing your fists onto the couch to stack your joints. Be sure wrists are beneath shoulders!  
  • Position your legs at 90 degrees, feet hip width. 
  • Brace your core, head neutral.  
  • Inhale in as your bend at the elbow to lower your body and exhale as you extend through the triceps.  
  • Don’t allow your shoulders to come past your elbows.  
  • Perform 10-15 reps, for 3 sets, resting 30 seconds to 1 minute as needed. 
  • *To modify, you can perform this movement on the floor

7) Tempo Push up

  • From a straight arm pushup position, keep your wrists under the shoulder, fingers spread wide, feet hip width, head neutral.  
  • Inhale in as your lower your body in 2-3 seconds, bending the elbows and squeezing the shoulder blades together. Exhale as you push through the palms and finger pads back to a straight arm position in 1 second. Your chest and hips should touch the floor and avoid flaring out your elbows.  
  • *To modify, perform the movement from the knees.

8) Wall Squat March

  • Find a wall and lower into a 90-degree squat. 
  • Keep your back flush into the wall, palms facing the wall, chin tucked.  
  • In one motion, inhale and lift one knee up, pushing through the opposite foot, and exhale to lower.
  • Repeat. 
  • Perform 5 reps each side, resting 30 seconds when needed. If this is too challenging, perform a wall sit for 1 minute, for 3 sets, resting 30 seconds to 1 minute.

9) Static Dog with Hamstring Curl

  • Come into a quadruped position: wrists beneath shoulder, knees beneath hips, neutral head and rib cage pulled down, all while actively pushing through the surface with wide fingers and finger pads.  
  • Initiate movement by extending the opposite arm and leg and holding that position, with thumb up and a flexed foot.  You’ll hold this static position for 15 breathes.  
  • *To Increase intensity, perform 15 hamstring curls.
  • *To decrease intensity, alternate raising opposing limbs vs holding them.  


10) Seated Wall Angel

  • Sit with your back against the wall, legs crossed or extended and toes pointed up towards the ceiling. 
  • Place your arms in 90 degree angles, back of arms, forearms, palms as close to the wall as possible, rib cage pulled down and chin tucked. 
  • Breathe in and exhale as you extend your arms overhead as much as possible. Pause and return. 
  • Perform 10-15 reps, for 3 sets, resting 30 seconds to 1 minute in between.  

11) Yogi Squat

  • Set your feet shoulder width apart, toes slightly turned out.
  • Bring palms together and inhale as you drop down into a deep squat, landing elbows to the inside of you quads.
  • Pause inside that deep squat position, exhaling, body weight in your heels and then return to standing by pushing through your heels and extending through hips.
  • *Focus on keeping a flat back and not rounding inside  your squat
  • *If you can’t drop your elbows inside your quads, focus on performing squats instead.
  • Perform 3 sets of 15 reps, resting 30 seconds to 1 minutes  in between. 



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