Get Fit Fast with These 8 Exercises…Using Only a Towel

Towel Workout

If you’ve never considered a towel to be a piece of exercise equipment, then I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn the versatility of this common household good. As it turns out, a towel workout very well may be your new go-to, at-home exercise program.

Why does a towel workout do the trick? It works because you have to keep tension in the towel at all times as you move through the exercises, and that equates to a lot of isometric holds. Isometric holds, added to movements that use your own body weight, combine to produce a challenging and fun workout.

What are the Benefits of a Towel Workout?

On the surface, a towel may seem way too simple to offer much in terms of a useful workout. But there are actually a lot of exercises you can do with just a simple towel. And as an added bonus, you can use it to wipe off sweat in-between sets!

Towels offer numerous benefits when it comes to getting in a good workout. For example, towel workouts are:

Cost effective—using a common household staple to get in a quick workout makes getting in your exercise a fun, free event. With no extra equipment needed, you can get in an effective workout without spending a dime.

Gentle—a towel workout is a low-intensity workout but difficult enough to allow you to get a great workout. By keeping tension on the towel during certain exercises, you allow your muscles to work hard without placing undue stress on them.

Convenient—can’t get away? Stay home and grab a towel: that’s all you need to get a solid workout. No more excuses!

Quick—you can fly through a full-body workout in no time at all without even leaving the house.

Gentle, convenient, cost-effective, and quick… it doesn’t get much better than that!

Get Fit Fast with These 8 Exercises… Using Only a Towel

Grab a towel and get in a workout, fast! What will you need? You’ll need a little bit of space, some floor space that isn’t carpeted (for the sliding motions), a towel, and your body. That’s it! You can try using varying sizes for your towel workout and see what works best for you.

1. Towel Shake

This warm-up exercise will help you get the blood flowing as you begin your routine.

Start by standing with your feet about hip-width apart. Grab one corner of the towel in each hand, letting it drape down in front of you. Next, stretch your arms out straight and move the towel up and down quickly.

Note: You may want to start with a hand towel for this exercise and work your way up to a larger, heavier towel over time.

2. V-Ups

Sit with your feet on the floor and your knees bent. Hold a rolled-up towel in front of you with your arms about shoulder-width apart, keeping tension on the towel at all times. Slowly lower your torso toward the ground while keeping the towel in front of you with your arms straight. Come back up into a V position by squeezing your abdominals as you lift your torso and legs while simultaneously bringing your outstretched arms forward with the towel.

Bonus: try throwing in a side-to-side twist with the towel while in the V position for an extra challenging ab workout.

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3. Towel Row

Work your back with this amazing towel exercise. Take your towel, roll it up, and wrap it around a stationary pole or immoveable object. Grasp each end of the towel with your hands. Place your feet close to the pole about hips-width apart. Squat down, letting your arms straighten in front of you. Pull your torso forward by bending your arms, just as you would for a cable row.

4. Towel Lateral Slides

Do this exercise on a floor without carpet. Place the towel under your right foot and stand with your hands on your hips. Bend your left knee and push your hips back as you slide your right foot out to the side. Pause before bringing your foot back to center by sliding your right foot toward your body again as you straighten your left knee and stand. Repeat on the opposite side.

5. Towel Hamstring Rollouts

This exercise will work your legs, glutes, and core. Start by lying on your back with your feet on a towel. Place your hands by your sides and bend your knees. Lift your hips off the floor and slide your feet out (using your heels) until your legs are straightened. Then slide your heels back toward your body to complete one repetition.

6. Plank Walks

These will really help you strengthen and sculpt your abdominals, shoulders, and arms. Start in a push-up position on your hands with your legs stretched out straight behind you with a towel under your feet. Next, move your right hand out and forward (“walk” forward with your hands). Drag your feet on the towel behind you. Repeat on the opposite side as you “walk” your way across the room.

7. Back Extensions

Start by lying face down on an uncarpeted floor. Place the towel under your outstretched hands in front of you. Next, pull your arms toward you while keeping them straight as you lift your chest and arch your back into a cobra pose. Hold for a moment at the top of the movement, then move slowly to push your hands forward and allow your chest to return back to the starting position and repeat.

If you want a truly challenging (and advanced) exercise in your towel workout routine, add in:

8. Towel Sliding Push-Ups

Start in plank/push-up position with a small towel under your right hand. Move your right hand forward as you lower your body into the bottom push-up position. Slide it back toward your chest as you straighten your left arm and return to the starting position. Repeat for ten repetitions with the right hand and then switch to the left hand and repeat.