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9 no-equipment exercises you can do anywhere

P.volve master trainer Antonietta Vicaria swears by these.

no-equipment workouts

Wouldn't it be nice if we all had state-of-the-art home gyms fully loaded with innovative weights and machines? But most mamas don't have that, and that's okay. You don't need a gym membership or fancy fitness equipment to get in a good workout.



The exercises below, created by Antonietta Vicario, P.volve master trainer and head of talent and training, are designed to strengthen your core and build endurance. If you find one you love, stick with it. Rest for a couple minutes, then repeat a few more times. If you discover you're not into one, skip it and try another. These exercises are designed to give you the confidence you need to improve your fitness game at your pace.

Here are 9 exercises to try at home that don't require a single piece of equipment:

1. Step back

Step back

1. Stand with your feet parallel and shift your hips back so your knees bend right over your ankles and reach your arms straight forward at shoulder height.

2. From there, extend one leg straight back behind you to 6 o'clock position (as if you were standing on a clock) with the back leg straight and the heel high.

3. Drive energy through the ball of the foot to engage your glutes while reaching your arms overhead.

4. From there, return to start position.

2. Step back with rotation

Step back with rotation

1. From your step back position, bring your arms shoulder height, elbows long and rotate your palms toward one another.

2. Twist your upper body away from your extended back leg, following the rotation with your hand and gaze to deeply activate the core muscles.

3. Be sure to keep your abs tight during this twist and return back to center.

3. Internal 45 with side stretch

Internal 45 with side stretch

1. From your step back position, rotate your back leg on a 45-degree angle out to the side while keeping the knee long and the front foot still in space.

2. Your hips should follow the rotation of the back leg. Reach the arm of your extended leg straight forward in line with your shoulder and bend the other elbow out to the side at a 90-degree angle.

3. Reach your bent arm up overhead while allowing your hips to shift to the side, feeling an elongation from your hip all the way up through your fingertips.

4. Internal 45 long leg squeeze

Internal 45 long leg squeeze

1. From your internal 45 position, shift your weight forward over your standing leg.

2. Keep your back leg rotated internally as you squeeze your glute and lift the leg up, creating a long diagonal line in the body.

3. Pull your lower abdominals in to draw the working knee inwards to your standing knee and extend back to the start position, working your balance, glutes and stability.

5. 3’ leg lift

3\u2019 leg lift

1. Stand with your feet parallel and shift your hips back so your knees bend right over your ankles.

2. Tilt your upper body forward so your spine is a diagonal from head to tail.

3. Tap one foot straight out to the side with a pointed foot and lift and lower the leg, working your glutes and core.

6. Kneeling inner thigh stretch with rotation

Kneeling inner thigh stretch with rotation

1. From a kneeling position, step one foot directly out to the side.

2. Shift your hips toward your foot, stretching your inner thighs while maintaining a squeeze on the kneeling glute.

3. Interlace your hands with your elbows wide, rotate your upper body away from your foot and wring out the entire abdominal wall.

7. Kneeling side kick

Kneeling side kick

1. From a crawling position, come down to one forearm and open your hips up so they are stacked.

2. Extend the leg of the top hip and lift and lower your leg to squeeze the glutes.

3. Remember to keep your shoulder away from the ear and press down through your forearm to engage the upper back and postural muscles.

8. Shift butt press

Shift butt press

1. Start in all fours stacked with a neutral spine, shift your hips back an inch or two so that your hands are forward of your shoulders and your hips are slightly behind your knees.

2. Keep your abdominals lifting to the ceiling so your back stays neutral.

3. Bend one knee up to the ceiling, pressing through a flexed foot and return to start position, pumping through the glutes.

9. Plank with elbow lift

Plank with elbow lift

1. Come to a plank position, zipping up your abdominals and keeping a long line of energy from head to heels.

2. Press into one hand and lift one elbow up toward the ceiling, rotating through the upper body and squeezing into the obliques.

3. Alternate arms and keep your hips as still as possible to tone the abdominals.

Products that solve your biggest breastfeeding challenges

Including a battle plan for clogged ducts!

When expecting a baby, there is a lot you can test-run in advance: Take that stroller around the block. Go for a spin with the car seat secured in place. Learn how to use the baby carrier with help from a doll. But breastfeeding? It's not exactly possible to practice before baby's arrival.

The absence of a trial makes it all the more important to prepare in other ways for breastfeeding success—and it can be as simple as adding a few of our lactation aiding favorites to your registry.

MilkBliss chocolate chip soft baked lactation cookies

MilkBliss lactation cookies

Studies have shown the top reason women stop breastfeeding within the first year is because they are concerned about their milk supply being enough to nourish baby. Consider MilkBliss Lactation Cookies to be your secret weapon. Not only are they wholesome and delicious, but they were formulated specifically for breastfeeding moms based on the science of galactagogues—also known as milk boosters. They also come in peanut butter and wild blueberry flavors.

$23

Evereden multi-purpose healing balm

Evereden multipurpose healing balm

Also up there on the list of reasons women stop breastfeeding: the toll the early days can take on nipples. Made from just five ingredients, this all natural healing balm is ideal for soothing chafed nipples, making for a much more comfortable experience for mama as her body adjusts to the needs of a breastfeeding baby.

$20

Lansinoh milk storage bags

Lansinoh milk storage bags

For a breastfeeding mama, there are few things more precious and valuable than the milk she worked so hard to pump—and it's the stuff of nightmares to imagine it spilling out in the fridge. With these double-sealed milk storage bags, you can be assured your breastmilk is safe and sound until baby needs it.

$12.50

Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Nursing a baby is a 24/7 job, which calls for some wardrobe modifications. Because Belly Bandit specializes in making things more comfortable for the postpartum mama, they've truly thought of every detail—from the breathable fabric to the clips that can be easily opened with one hand.

$47

boob-ease soothing therapy pillows

Boob Ease soothing therapy pillows

For nursing moms, duct can quickly become a four-letter word when you suspect it's getting clogged. By keeping these soothing breast pillows in your breastfeeding arsenal, you can immediately go on the defense against plugged milk ducts by heating the pads in the microwave or cooling them in the freezer.

$25

Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

A unfortunate reality of nursing is that it can really seem to limit the wardrobe options when you have to think about providing easy, discrete access. But by adding functional basics to your closet, you can feel confident and prepared for breastfeeding on the go.

$59

Bebe au Lait premium cotton nursing cover

Bebe au Lait cotton nursing cover

Nursing in public isn't every mama's cup of tea. But babies can't always wait until you've found a private place to get down to business if that's your preference. That's where a nursing cover comes in handy. This one is made from premium cotton and features a patented neckline that allows for airflow and eye contact even while you're covered.

$36

Lactation Lab basic breastmilk testing kit

Lactation Lab breastmilk testing kit

Curious to learn more about the liquid gold you're making, mama? The testing kit from Lactation Labs analyzes your breast milk for basic nutritional content like calories and protein, as well as vitamins, fatty acids and environmental toxins to help boost your breastfeeding confidence.

$99

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this

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5 brilliant products that encourage toddler independence

Help your little one help themselves.

One of our main goals as mothers is to encourage our children to learn, grow and play. They start out as our tiny, adorable babies who need us for everything, and somehow, before you know it, they grow into toddlers with ideas and opinions and desires of their own.

You may be hearing a lot more of "I do it!" or maybe they're pushing your hand away as a signal to let you know, I don't need your help, Mama. That's okay. They're just telling you they're ready for more independence. They want to be in charge of their bodies, and any little bit of control their lives and abilities allow.

So, instead of challenging your toddler's desire for autonomy, we found five of our favorite products to help encourage independence—and eliminate frustration in the process.

EKOBO Bamboo 4-piece kid set

EKOBO bamboo 4-piece kid set

This colorful set includes a plate, cup, bowl and spoon and is just right for your child's meal experience. Keep them in an easy-to-reach cabinet so they'll feel encouraged (and excited!) to get their own place setting each time they eat.

$25

Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Before you know it, your little one will be asking (okay, maybe demanding) to fill their own water cups. This amazing 4-pack of cups attaches directly to the fridge (or any glass, metal, tile or fiberglass surface) making it easier for your child to grab a cup themselves. Just be sure a water pitcher or dispenser is nearby, and—boom!—one task off your plate.

$29

Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

These beautiful blocks, made from sustainably-sourced wood and water-based, non-toxic, lead-free paint, will keep your little one focused on their creation while they're also busy working on their fine-motor skills. The puzzle design will encourage patience as your kiddo creates their own building, fitting one block in after the next.

$18

Lorena Canals basket

Lorena Canals Basket

This *gorgeous* braided cotton basket is the perfect, accessible home for their blocks (and whatever else you want to hide away!) so your kiddo can grab them (and clean them up) whenever their heart desires.

$29

BABYBJÖRN step stool

BABYBJ\u00d6RN Step Stool

Your kiddo might be ready to take on the world, but they might need an extra boost to do so—cue, a step stool! An easy-to-move lightweight stool is the must-have confidence-boosting tool you need in your home so your growing tot can reach, well... the world.

$20

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In Montessori schools, parents are periodically invited to observe their children at work in the classroom. I have heard many parents express shock to see their 3- or 4-year-old putting away their own work when they finish—without even being asked!

"You should see his room at home!" or, "I ask him to put his toys away every day, and it's a battle every single time" were frequent comments.

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