Start your cardio routine with the basics

By Nicole Ganglani | Source photo from Sergio Pedemonte/Unsplash | Art by Tricia Guevara

To get yourself accustomed to working out, it’s important to start with the basics and by that we mean cardio exercises because they are essential components of every workout. Cardio is any exercise that raises your heart rate. For beginners, the only goal you have to set for yourself is to do it consistently so you can build your exercise habits. Once you’ve gotten into the groove then you can create your own goals. Here are basic cardio exercises you can start with:


Skater jumps

Skater jumps are suited for beginners because they’re simple and only require you to move from side to side. All you have to do is jump in a pattern that will shift your body weight from one side to another to target your legs, glutes and hip joints. If you do it often, you’ll develop lower body balance and prevent leg injuries as well. 

Tips to master skater jumps

  • Make sure your back is flat and your chest is facing upwards
  • Swing your arms every time you land
  • Jump as high as you can


Squat jumps

Squat jumps are bodyweight moves that increase lower body muscle strength and the heart rate. The challenge is that you’re forced to balance your body weight, which, in turn, benefits your core, ab and back muscles. Since it promotes proper balance, squat jumps also fix your posture. This exercise is good for beginners because it’s a stepping stone for other complex leg and ab workouts. 


Tips to master squat jumps: 

  • Warm up first before doing squat jumps
  • Make sure you follow the right form by slightly bending your knees
  • Once you land, immediately repeat the next jump so you don’t lose momentum


Rotational jacks

Rotational jacks is a mix of jump, squats and body twist exercises that spikes up the heart rate and invigorates the muscles. Because it’s a combination of three movements, it works your core, quads, hamstrings, butt and back. Once you get the hang of rotational jacks, you’ll see an improvement in your rhythm, muscle coordination, balance, timing and posture. 

Tips to master rotational jacks: 

  • Make sure to follow the right squat position when landing 
  • Jump into starting position (with your knees and hands together) again after every turn
  • Always switch your arms and jump as high as you can 

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