Are you unsure where to start with a ‘home workout’? Then read on...

Claire Lightowlers

Are you unsure where to start with a ‘home workout’? Do you struggle to know what exercises to do? Do you get overwhelmed at trying to understand which exercises are the best to do?

If you haven’t been actively involved in exercise recently and don’t know where to start with getting active again these short videos could give you a bit of direction. The aim is to give you a format that can be light intensity, easy to follow and require little to no equipment. As you develop a routine and become more familiar with it you can progress the exercises to challenge yourself further.

Three videos are based on a concept called Tabata, which is a 4-minute workout of 20 seconds of effort, 10 seconds of rest repeated 8 times. Although the idea, when developed by Mr Izumi Tabata, was to complete the 20 seconds of exercise at a high intensity in order to improve fitness and help with weight loss, the purpose of these videos is just to get you started so the intensity can be lower.

I understand that it can be easy to talk yourself out of doing exercise if you are not sure what to do, if you are doing the ‘right’ thing, or if you are training the ‘right’ muscle groups etc, but the bottom line is that moving around doing something will always be better for you than doing nothing.

The options with Tabata are endless as you can chose one exercise and repeat it 8 times, 2 exercises and perform each 4 times or pick 4 different exercises and perform each 2 times. Here are just some examples of the exercises you could choose from:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Press-ups
  • Ab curls
  • Shoulder presses
  • Tricep dips
  • Step ups
  • Reverse curls
  • Glute bridges
  • Plank
  • Side plank


Read the pdf document attached below for some more information on Tabata workouts.

There are also three videos showing a one-minute challenge. Again these are examples where even to challenge yourself for a minute can put a demand on your muscle strength or cardio-respiratory system. We often associate an exercise session with something quite time consuming or something that has to be fitted into a very busy day and so it is often pushed to the bottom of the priority list. However if we were to change our perception to recognise that even to do ‘little and often’ would be better than doing nothing at all, we could increase our activity levels quite easily. Now, one minute of exercise each day is obviously not going to make you fit enough to run a 5k but it is going to get you up off the chair, into a better posture, increase your circulation and distract your thoughts from other work or lifestyle stressors temporarily at least.

If you were to decide to do two Tabata workouts and a one minute challenge that would be a 10 minute exercise session completed. Research has shown that 10 minute bouts of exercise can have positive physiological changes for your body, reducing your risk of cardiac disease, stroke and some cancers, as well as have an impact on hormonal releases that help improve mood.

See the pdf file attached highlighting the benefits of exercise.

I have posted videos on Twist west previously highlighting how to perform some exercises safely so please refer to these again to ensure you are using a safe technique for movements. However, if something causes sharp or shooting pains, either reduce the intensity or range of movement or adapt it to do something else, and if anything just doesn’t feel right, change it – listen to your body.


Tabata 1


Tabata 2


Tabata 3


1 minute challenge - High plank


1 minute challenge – wall squat


1 minute challenge – step ups