playground workout


Nine MORE exercises you can do at the playground

Earlier this summer, I showed you how you can get a full-body workout at the playground using just 10 exercises. Now, here are nine more moderate-to-difficult exercises to add to your playground routine. 

Upper body exercises 

Bench Toe Pushup

Toes-on-bench push-ups
Start in a plank position with your hands on the ground and toes on the bench. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and lower yourself until your chest nearly touches the ground. Using your chest muscles, press your body back to the starting position.
Variation: Place your feet on the ground or on a lower platform for less intensity. The higher the elevation of your feet, the more difficult it is.
Repetitions: 10-15  

Bench dips

Bench dips
Sit on the seat of the bench with fingers curled around the edge. Place feet straight out in front of you, resting on your heels. Straighten arms and slide your rear off the bench. Lower your body, by bending your arms, until you feel a stretch across shoulders or chest. Straighten arms and raise your body back to the starting position.
Variation: Bend your knees at a 90-degree angle to lessen intensity.

Bar pullup

Chin-ups or pull-ups
Grab the bar with arms shoulder-width apart and palms facing you. Lift your feet off the ground by bending your knees. Pull yourself up keeping your elbows close to your body until your chin passes the bar. Lower yourself down until your arms are straight. To do a pull-up, change your hand position so that your palms are facing away from you as you hold the bar.
If you are not strong enough to do a chin-up or pull-up, use a ladder or step to help get into the chin-up position (second image) and hold for 30-45 seconds.

Lower body exercises

Bench jump ups

Bench jumps
Stand in front of a bench with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees bent and your back straight. Jump with both feet at the same time and land on the bench seat with your feet still shoulder-width apart. Step off of the bench back to the starting position and repeat. NOTE: Please be sure that the ground is clear of debris and the bench is study and well secured before doing this exercise.
Variation: Find a higher platform to increase intensity.
: 10-15

Bench toe taps

Single leg lunge
Start standing, facing away from the seat of the bench. With your right leg, take a large step forward and extend your left leg back. The top of your foot should be resting on the bench seat. Squat down by flexing your right leg until your left knee is almost touching the ground. Your right knee should not extend beyond your toes. Return to an upright position, keeping your back foot resting on the bench. Complete one set then switch legs.
Add weight to each hand to increase intensity.
10-15 on each leg

Bench swing shots

Toe taps
Stand facing the seat of the bench with both feet on the ground. Jump so your right foot lands on the seat of the bench and the left foot lands on the ground. Jump again and alternate feet so your left foot is on the top of the bench and your right foot is on the ground. Jump and switch feet as quickly as possible.
Find a higher platform or add weight to each hand to increase intensity.

Core exercises

Bar knees up

Start by hanging from the bar with palms facing away from you and your knees bent. Bring both knees up in front of you to hip or chest height. Release back to hanging. Repeat.
Variation: Straighten your legs and lift legs to pike position—parallel in front of you, folding at your hips—to increase intensity.
Repetitions: 10-15 

Swing knee tuck

Plank knee tucks
Start in a plank position with your arms straight and shoulder-width apart. One at a time, reach your legs back and rest the tops of your feet on the swing. Lift your hips and pull your knees toward your chest, bringing the swing forward with you. Keep your entire body engaged, and slowly return to the starting position.
Repetitions: 10-15

Swing ab rollout

Ab roll out
Kneel on the ground about arm's length from the swing. With palms facing together, grab the side chains of the swing, just above the seat. Tighten your ab muscles and slowly push the swing out in front of you until you're at a 45-degree angle. Make sure your lower back is not sinking. Hold for one second and pull back to the starting position.
Repetitions: 10-15


  • Train with the pros at the LiveWell Fitness Center

    Sign up

Share this article


Exercise may help teens keep stress in check

While stress is normal on a teens journey to adulthood, there is a limit to what any one young person can handle. Exercise can be an effective way for your adolescent to manage their stress.

Continue reading


Get fun, inspiring, provider-reviewed articles sent to your inbox.

Sign up for our email newsletter