Exercises

13 Best Indoor Cardio Exercises – No Equipment Workout

Whether you’re in lockdown (boo) or you prefer the privacy of your own home when you get your workout on, you’ll need our list of the best indoor cardio exercises with no equipment. 

You really don’t need a load of equipment for a great cardio workout, you can do it all with just your bodyweight! 

Once you’ve got these movements down, you can go pretty much anywhere and ensure you’ve got a fantastic set of indoor cardio exercises that are sure to make up a great workout. 

What’s more, because we’re getting back to basics with no equipment, you don’t have to worry about lugging a gym bag around with you all the time.

Burpees

 

From standing, to floor, to jump and back to standing. The burpee seems pretty easy when you think about it in straightforward, functional terms of the movement itself. 

However, when you start doing it, and the lungs and heart rate get involved, it’s far from easy! We love a burpee as the corner stone of any indoor cardio exercises for a no equipment workout. 

It’s pretty much guaranteed to get your blood pumping and the sweat flowing. Whether you’re in the gym or at home, it’s a must for any truly challenging cardio exercises, equipment or not! 

Jumping Jacks

 

Jumping jacks are another great way to turn up the heat on a workout, as a fantastic indoor cardio exercise with no equipment. 

You’ve been doing them in gym class probably since you were about 5, and they’re still super effective now, because they increase your heart rate and get your whole body working. All of this makes them perfect for an indoor cardio exercise. 

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Jog on the spot

 

We’re indoors right now… we don’t have the space to be running about! So let’s do it on the spot! 

If you really want to increase the burn with this one, fire up those arms and raise those knees – the additional speed and range of motion will help to recruit more muscles and get your heart working harder. 

By adapting the intensity to suit your fitness and your goals, you can ensure you always get a great workout from this indoor cardio exercise. 

Down ups

Pretty much what it says on the tin, and not too far away from the classic burpee, this indoor cardio exercises needs no equipment to get your heartrate up and your body working. 

To do it, hit the deck and lie down on your front. 

Then, push up with your hands, jump your feet under your hips and stand up. 

Return to the floor to start your second rep. 

Quite literally, down, and then up! 

Once again, it sounds simple, but definitely don’t underestimate the cardiovascular challenge it puts on your body. It’s a keeper! 

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Step Ups

indoor cardio exercise step ups

With this indoor cardio exercise, no equipment is needed, but you might need a sturdy chair (preferably one that’s fixed to the floor for safety!) or a step. Most homes have at least one of these so you should be able to perform a step up without any issues. 

With this movement, remember to alternate legs as you probably don’t want to end up with one glute bigger than the other (Unless you do want to, in which case go for it!). 

This one not only puts the burn right on your glutes as you use them to step up, but it also triggers that all important cardiovascular response, raising your heart rate and heightening your breathing too. 

Sit to stand

 

Whether you do this from a chair or from the floor, this can be another great indoor cardio exercise that will get the bloody pumping.

Once again, it uses all your biggest muscle groups to get you from that sitting position to standing, so you can guarantee you’ll feel the burn in your lungs and muscles after a few rounds of this! 

Bodyweight Squats

 

An absolutely classic cardio exercise, where no equipment is needed! So many people think you need a barbell for this, but if you’re after a really effective cardiovascular response, you’re honestly better off without the added weight. 

If you can do more squats in a short space of time, you’re going to feel it in your heart and your lungs, as well as the muscles. Pretty much ideal for any indoor cardio workout right?! 

One thing we will say though, is it’s essential you get your form correct from the word go – there’s no point doing loads of quick squats that will end up hurting your knees, or damaging your back. With that in mind please take a look at our guide on how to do a squat before you start your workout. 

Bodyweight lunges

Reverse lunge hip dip exercise

Again, this movement pulls on quite a few big muscle groups in the lower body, making it a great option for your indoor cardio exercises with no equipment. 

As with the bodyweight squat, if you can do them quickly, it will be just a couple of reps before you start to feel that cardiovascular response. 

What’s more, it focusses on the legs and the butt, and the bigger the muscle groups, the more your body will be working! 

Once again, make sure that form is great for this one as you don’t want any injuries. Check out our guide on how to standing lunge or how to walking lunge to make sure you’re using the best possible form. 

Jumping Squats

Alrighty, we’ve mastered the bodyweight squat. Thought that was a brilliant addition to your selection of indoor cardio exercises with no equipment? Well now let’s add the jumping squat into your arsenal. 

To be completely honest, this is an absolute killer and it really gets results. With this one, you’ll pull in a brilliant, calorie crunching cardio response and you’ll definitely feel your muscles working too. 

Simple perform your squat and at the top when you go to stand, push hard until you’re in a jump. When you hit the ground again, it’s instantly back into the bottom of your squat. 

Pretty quickly you’ll start to understand how this can take your indoor cardio workouts to the next level. 

Jumping Lunges

You can’t have a jumping squat without a jumping lunge! 

Pretty much the same story as the jumping squat – from the bottom of your lunge, push up hard into a jump, switch your legs in mid air and drop down back into the bottom of a lunge. 

You really need to have your form tip top on this one, so don’t graduate to a jumping lunge before shoring up those foundations with a standing or walking lunge. Honestly, you’ll thank us when you don’t have any injuries or pulled muscles a couple weeks from now! 

Add this to your range of indoor cardio exercises with no equipment and trust us, you won’t regret it! 

Mountain Climbers

indoor cardio exercises no equipment

What’s an indoor cardio workout without a little ab work?! Plus, this indoor cardio exercises gets your legs pumping, so your heart rate is guaranteed to initiate that all important cardiovascular response, without any equipment! 

On top of that, it helps you to develop those stabilising core muscles that will aid you in developing a well-balanced physique. 

What’s not to love? Sign me up for mountain climbers in every indoor cardio workout. Please and thank you. 

High Knees

You can’t go wrong with this indoor cardio exercise. Really, it’s like jogging on the spot, but with all that extra range of motion that up your cardio response in no time! You can use it once you’re comfortable with jogging on the spot, and take your workouts to the next level. 

What’s more, this is great for indoor cardio workouts, as it can be done on the spot! So you’re not dashing in and out of rooms to get your heart rate up. 

gymgirlfit

gymgirlfit was created by health and fitness enthusiasts, with backgrounds in powerlifting and writing. We've written for a number of well-known fitness publishing companies.

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