While you can use gym equipment such as treadmills and elliptical machines, you can also try these effective cardio exercises at home
Cardio exercises include activities that increase your heart rate and make you pump blood faster, keeping both your heart and lungs stay healthy.
While you can use gym equipment such as treadmills and elliptical machines, you can also do cardio at home. Here are 6 good cardio exercises that are simple yet effective.
6 good cardio exercises you can do at home
- Walking: Walking is perhaps one of the easiest yet most effective cardio exercises. It is a great low-impact exercise that does not put strain or pressure on your joints, making it suitable for most people. Whether a leisurely stroll or brisk walk, walking can help you burn calories and increase your stamina.
- Swimming: Swimming can help you burn about 400-700 calories an hour, although this may vary depending on your body weight (the heavier you are, the more calories you burn) and your pace. Swimming is also easy on your joints.
- High knees: Doing high knees involves running in place, meaning you can perform this cardio exercise without much need for space. For this exercise, stand with your feet hip-width apart. Lift your knees as high as possible, keeping your core engaged and shoulders relaxed.
- Mountain climbers: Mountain climbers are a good full-body cardio workout. Start in a high plank position, with shoulders over your wrists and your core engaged. Draw your right knee to the chest, then return to the high plank with both feet on the floor and repeat with the left leg. Perform with alternating legs as fast as you can.
- Inchworms: For this exercise, stand with your feet together or slightly apart. Keep your abs tight. Gentl, breathe out and bend downward, keeping your legs straight. Touch the ground and crawl forward until you are in a push-up position and your back is parallel to the ground. Crawl back in the same way until you reach the standing position. Inhale and repeat.
- Burpees: Start in a push-up position and push off the balls of your feet so that your knees come close to your chest and you land in a squat. Jump from the squat position raising your hands above your head, and then land softly back into the squat. Place your hands on the floor underneath the shoulders, and spring your legs back to return to the push-up position.
What are the benefits of cardio exercises?
How much cardio should you do every week?
Cardio exercises are an important component of any fitness regime and should be incorporated along with strength training, balance exercises, and flexibility exercises. You can alter your weekly routine so that you are focusing on a few components each day. This way you can work on different muscle groups and keep your workouts varied and engaging.
Experts recommend doing at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week. This equates to at least 30 minutes of exercise at least 5 days a week.
If you have been living a sedentary life and are just beginning cardio exercises, you can start with 10-15 minutes of exercise a day and gradually increase the time as you build endurance.
What precautions should you take when doing cardio exercises?
When doing cardio exercises, make sure you warm up before and cool down after your routine.
If you have any health conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, talk to your doctor about which exercises are suitable for you. If you want to start an exercise routine but you are over the age of 35, you may want to consult your doctor to test for any health conditions.
Medically Reviewed on 5/4/2022
Nystoriak MA, Bhatnagar A. Cardiovascular Effects and Benefits of Exercise. Front Cardiovasc Med. 2018;5:135. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6172294/
American Heart Association. Endurance Exercise (Aerobic). https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/fitness/fitness-basics/endurance-exercise-aerobic
NASM. A Perfect Fitte: 5 Ways To Customize Cardio Programming. https://blog.nasm.org/a-perfect-fitte-5-ways-to-customize-cardio-programming
Mayo Clinic. Aerobic exercise: Top 10 reasons to get physical. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/aerobic-exercise/art-20045541