Written by Liz Cort, Certified Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor
Photography by Audra Oden
Grab a friend, hit the beach, and slay this bodyweight circuit. You’ll feel stronger and more empowered after this fun sweat sesh with your bestie! Working out with friends makes staying fit easier by keeping you accountable for every last rep. Plus, the time goes by so much faster when you’re training with a buddy.
How To: Start with a light five-minute warmup of dynamic movements like jogging on the spot, jumping jacks, and high knees. Then, complete the following circuit three times through for a great total-body workout.
High Five Sit-Up
Begin lying on your backs with your feet interlaced with your partner’s (A). Simultaneously, perform a sit-up to meet in the middle and high five (B). Lower back down with control, then immediately repeat.
Quick Tip: Say something encouraging to your training buddy when you high five at the top such as, “You’re amazing” or “We’ve got this!” Watch how these positive words of affirmation elevate endorphins and help you push through your workouts.
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Without changing positions from the sit-up, place the bottoms of your feet together in the air with knees bent (A). Engage your glutes and hamstrings and push against your partner’s feet with equal amounts of pressure as you both lift your hips off the ground into a bridge (B). Hold for 2-5 seconds, then slowly lower back down and immediately repeat.
Reverse Row & Plank Hold
Have one partner lie face-up with the other partner standing over her, feet on either side of her hips and knees slightly bent. Hold each other’s forearms with locked arms (A). If you are standing, bend your elbows and pull your partner towards you as if you are performing a row, while she maintains a straight line with her body and keeps her heels on the ground (B). Repeat for all reps, then switch positions so the standing partner is now performing the plank and vice versa.
Jump Squat to High Five
Both partners start in loaded squat position (A). Simultaneously, explode straight into the air, high-fiving at the top of the movement (B). Land with soft knees and immediately repeat for all reps.
See-Saw Squat/Decline Push-Up
One partner gets into a high plank position while the other partner stands between her feet, facing her head, and holds her legs by the ankles. The partner who is standing performs a full squat while the other partner maintains the plank position (A). As you return to the standing position, the partner in plank performs a single push-up (B). Repeat for all reps, then switch positions so the squatting partner is performing the push-up, and vice versa.
Quick Tip: To modify this exercise, have one partner hold plank position, while the other stands next to her and performs 10 squats, then switch.
I’ve-Got-Your-Back Partner Squat
Begin by standing back-to-back with your partner with arms interlocked and knees slightly bent in a semi-squat. Lean against each other with even pressure (A). Moving together, slowly bend your knees and simultaneously lower into squats (B). Return to the semi-squat position and repeat for all reps.
Begin with one partner holding plank position on her forearms and the other partner standing at her side, knees slightly bent (A). The partner who is standing explodes up and over the partner who is in plank (B). Land on the opposite side with soft knees and immediately repeat, jumping to the other side. Complete all reps, then switch positions so the jumping partner is now holding plank, and vice versa.
Want another partner challenge? Try these six exercises for a little friendly competition.