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5 Full-body exercises you can do on a playground (PHOTOS)

Certified personal trainer, author and ISSA Director of Wellness John Rowley is a widely recognized fitness health and wellness expert who helps others transform their bodies and help them find their passion, purpose and drive for succes...

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

Trying to fit in a workout while being a mom, and taking care of the kids, can be quite the challenge. With the warm weather here to stay, you should be enjoying the nice weather just as much as your kids are. Instead of just sitting there while your kids play in the park, treat yourself to an outdoor summer workout! Not only will they be running around burning off their energy, but you can get a total body-toning workout just by using the playground — no gym membership required.

1. Monkey bar holds (targets core, back and biceps)

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

  1. Reach up with palms facing you and hold on to the monkey bars.
  2. Pull body up so that your chin is up over the bar and your feet are off of the ground.
  3. Try and hold this position for 20 seconds and repeat 3 times

2. Slide lunges (targets butt and thighs)

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

  1. Stand facing away from the slide, rest one foot on the bottom of the slide and place your hands on your hips
  2. Bend your knee until parallel to the ground and return to starting position. Make sure to not let your knee move farther forward than your toes
  3. Do 15 reps and repeat with the other leg

3. Jungle-gym standing push ups (targets chest, shoulders and triceps)

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

  1. Pick a spot on the jungle gym (preferably a ladder if possible) and stand at an arm-length away
  2. Place your hands on a bar that is not higher that your chest
  3. Keep your body straight and bend your elbows until they are at a 90 degree angle
  4. Do 12 to 15 reps and repeat

4. Swing knee lifts (targets abs, back and legs)

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

  1. Stand on a swing (a flexible seat will be more challenging) while holding onto the chains and balancing on the left foot
  2. Stand tall as you slowly raise your right knee to hip height, pulling your abs in as you lift. Hold for a second
  3. Slowly lower your leg and repeat, keeping the swing and the rest of your body as still as possible
  4. Do 10 to 15 times; repeat with opposite leg

5. Monkey bar knee tucks (targets abs)

How to use a playground as your own personal gym

  1. Grab the monkey bars with an underhand grip
  2. Hang from it and tuck your knees up into your body, hold for 2 seconds and then slowly lowering the legs. Make sure you move with control so you don't swing
  3. Repeat 10 to 15 times
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