You lie on it, you lift on it and you sweat on it.  The humble weight bench takes a real beating. Without the bench, there would be no bench press or excessive grunting.

However, it’s time to see the bench in a completely different light.The bench is a tool you can use to improve your power, balance and core strength without the need for any extra equipment. Just you and the bench equals great total body training.

After doing this, you’ll never look at the bench the same way again.


Complete the following as a circuit. Rest as little as possible between exercises and 60-90 seconds at the end of each circuit. Do a total of four rounds.

1. Squat Jumps (8-12 reps) – Lower down into a squat with hips hovering just above the bench. Hold for four seconds, jump explosively and immediately lower down into the next rep.


2. Incline plyometric push –ups (8-12 repetitions) – Get in a pushup position with your hands on the bench. Lower down and explode up until hands leave the bench. Land softly and repeat.


3. Birddogs (8-12 reps) – With hands and knees on the bench (straight spine for head to butt), extend the left arm and right leg, and then right arm, left leg. Keep alternating sides until all your reps are completed.


4. Step up to Reverse lunge (8-12 reps) – Step up with left leg, driving the right knee towards the ceiling. Then put right foot on the floor and step back into a reverse lunge with the left leg. Do all your reps on one side then repeat on the other side.


5. Elevated side plank (20 seconds on each side) – With your elbow underneath your shoulder and feet stacked on the bench, elevate into a side plank. Drive your elbow down and keep your hip up to maintain good position.



Wrapping up

You don’t always need a lot of equipment to become balanced and powerful.  You, the bench and a little sweat equity will get the job done without fuss or fanfare.


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