Tone Your Whole Body With These 3 Bench Moves

Those padded benches at the gym aren't just for pressing! These moves rely on your own body weight to tighten you up from head to toe. For best results, do this routine three times through, twice a week.
If you want to squeeze in some cardio while you're at it, try this variation: Between moves, step onto the bench with your right foot, then bring your left foot up so you're standing. Return to start. Repeat 5 times, then switch sides.

Move #1: Split Squat

Works glutes, thighs, and hamstrings
Stand two to three feet in front of bench and place top of left foot on it. Bend knee as far as you can (as shown). Pause and return to start. Do 12 reps; switch sides. Remember to press into your right heel and engage your abs to steady yourself.

Move #2: Kick-Starter

Works abs and hips
Lie on bench with legs straight in the air to create a 90-degree angle with the floor. Use hands to grip bench overhead and, keeping legs straight, lower legs (as shown) until parallel with floor. Pause, then slowly lift legs back to starting position for one rep. Do 12 reps. Try not to lock your knees; if you keep them soft, the exercise will be more comfortable.

Move #3: Push & Hold

Works shoulders, arms, and chest
Get on knees with hands placed slightly wider than shoulders on bench. Lower body until chest nearly touches bench (as shown). Pause for five seconds, then push back to start. Do 12 reps. If five seconds feels like too long, start with three seconds and work your way up.

This story originally appeared in the March 2016 issue of Good Housekeeping.

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