A 15-Minute Upper-Body Workout You Can Do Without Any Equipment

Include triceps dips, push-ups and walking planks in your upper-body workouts that don't require equipment.
Image Credit: Prostock-Studio/iStock/GettyImages

Contrary to popular belief, upper-body workouts aren't only for looking like the Incredible Hulk. Upper-body exercises can strengthen your bones and stabilize your joints — two important factors in preventing injuries.

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Body-weight exercises are a great way to improve your health without the use of equipment, which means these exercises can be done anywhere, anytime. Plus, they can improve your muscle endurance and strength just as effectively as if you were to use weights.

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The following 15-minute upper-body workout is designed to work multiple muscles at once (as opposed to isolated one muscle group), so you'll get more bang for your buck — no fitness equipment necessary.

Perform each exercise below for 45 seconds, resting 15 seconds before beginning the next move. Repeat the sequence for a total of 3 rounds.

1. Inchworm With Arm Raise

Sets 3
Time 45 Sec
  1. Start standing, push your hips back, fold your torso forward and walk your hands out in front of you until you come into a high plank.
  2. Keep a tight core and flat back as you raise your left arm so your left bicep is by your left ear.
  3. Lower your left arm back down to the floor.
  4. Then, raise your right arm so your right bicep is by your right ear.
  5. Lower your right arm back down to the floor.
  6. Walk your hands back to your feet.
  7. Stand back up and repeat.

2. Walking Plank

Sets 3
Time 45 Sec
  1. Start in a high plank (the top of a push-up) so that you support yourself on your hands and toes, body forming a straight line from head to heels.
  2. Lower your right elbow/forearm to the ground.
  3. Then move your left arm down so both forearms are flat on the ground.
  4. Pause, then take your right arm and plant that hand on the mat. Push yourself up on that side.
  5. Then take your left arm, plant your left hand and push yourself back up to the top position of a push-up.
  6. On the next rep, switch the arm that goes down first.
  7. Repeat.

3. Push-Up

Sets 3
Time 45 Sec
  1. Position yourself on your hands and knees, hands under shoulders and knees under hips.
  2. Step your feet back and straighten your legs so that you're balanced on your palms and toes.
  3. Check your body and hand position: Your body should make a straight line from head to hips to heels, and your hands should be directly under your shoulders or slightly wider apart.
  4. Bend your elbows at a 45-degree angle to your body and lower your body to the floor.
  5. Make sure to keep your body in one straight line from the neck through the spine to the hips and down to the heels.
  6. Press into your palms and push the floor away from you to come back up to a high plank, still keeping your body in one straight line.
  7. Repeat.

4. Superhero Pulldown

Sets 3
Time 45 Sec
  1. Lie on your stomach with your arms and legs extended.
  2. Press your belly into the ground as you lift your chest and arms up and off the ground.
  3. Pull your elbows down behind your head.
  4. Slowly bring your arms back to starting position, hands reaching overhead.
  5. Repeat.

5. Triceps Dip

Sets 3
Time 45 Sec
  1. Start with your butt, hands and heels on the floor. Place your hands behind your back, flat on the floor. Brace your core.
  2. Press through your hands and heels and squeeze you glutes to raise your hips several inches off of the floor.
  3. Slowly bend your elbows to a 45-degree angle while lowering your butt toward the floor.
  4. Push back up to the starting position.
  5. Repeat.

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