Test Your Skill:
To those of you who’ve been using your Total Gym for many years – we thank you. We also know you might be looking for some exercises outside of the norm! We decided to share some of our “unconventional” exercises with you, and though these are very advanced, they’re also very achievable.
Make sure you read through the descriptions carefully and follow the instructions in the video if you attempt these exercises.
Half-Kneeling Rotating Chest Press
- Place the rails mid-level. If you have an adjustable glideboard, bring it up so it is parallel to the ground.
- Hold the handle in your right hand so the cable will run under your arm.
- Knuckle down toward the bottom of the glideboard, and bring your right knee just behind your fist.
- Bring your left foot up into a half-kneeling position.
- Engage your core, and bring your body upright, extend your right arm into a chest press.
- Rotate all the way across your body. You can play with different angles, as shown in the video.
This a fantastic exercise for engaging multiple muscle groups, including the lower body, core and upper body, as well as for moving in multiple planes of motion.
Half-Kneeling Hand to Knee
- Knuckle down with both handles, in a tabletop position on the board facing the tower.
- Lift up your right hand and extend it toward the tower and engage your core and lift your left knee off the board and extend your leg straight behind you.
- Hold for a breath and carefully and slowly pull your right hand down as you bring your left knee to meet your right hand. You will get to a point where you alternate each rep.
This exercise is hard but it is not intended to be so difficult that there is no benefit – it’s intended to promote concentration and slower, more methodical movements to strengthen core muscle groups.
Supine 1-Arm Bicep Curl, 1-Arm Shoulder Raise
- Sit facing your tower, at the top of the glideboard.
- Lie back until your head rests on the glideboard and bend your knees so you can place your heels onto the board. If you have long hair, make sure it is tucked under your head.
- Start with a bicep curl with the right arm. Then do a Lateral Raise with the left arm. Now do them at the same time, alternating with each rep.
We’ve all heard of the “Mind-Body Connection.” One way to achieve exercise effectiveness is to concentrate on your workout! Having to perform multiple exercises at once is a way to focus your attention on the task at hand – strengthening your mind and body overall.
Standing Paddleboard Row
- Make sure the incline is at a very low level – even the lowest level will work. Hold one handle in your right hand, and knuckle down toward the top of the glideboard.
- Place one foot at a time, parallel to each other and facing the tower, on the board.
- Engage the core, the legs, and very slowly rise up to standing. Hold the handle in one hand and emulate a paddleboard row.
This one is intense! Be sure to focus on balance, overall strengthening and core engagement of this exercise. It’s not about how much you can lift or how heavy you make it, it’s about proprioception and controlling the board like you would on water.
Reverse Plank Renegade Row (with or without weights)
- Remove your Squat Stand. Get two dumbbells you would normally use for rows.
- Place your hands on the ground and open the glideboard with your toes so you are in a full plank position.
- Row one dumbbell at a time, alternating between each rep. If you really want to get serious, row and lift the dumbbell up toward the ceiling, twisting your body and following the weight with your eyes.
Progressive core strength is a major benefit for Total Gym users. This exercise is extreme and involves your glutes, upper body and stabilizing muscles throughout.
Pike to Plank (optional push-up)
- In a Pike position, bring the board down the rails slowly, stretching your hamstrings and controlling the movement with your core.
- Extend the legs to the starting position.
- Throw in a Push-up if you like!
This exercise is not about strength but the right awareness of your body and core engagement to control the board so you don’t slam down and topple over.
Give these unconventional exercises a try, and let us know if you’ve got any up your sleeve. We are always learning from both users and trainers all over the world, and are always open to new ideas!