At home workout: how to strength train with nothing but a chair

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Our Strong Women ambassador Alice-Rose Miller shows us how to strength train using only a chair in this quick and effective 10 minute workout. 

Stop refreshing that website featuring sold out or overpriced dumbbells. There are plenty of other ways to build muscle – like these resistance-based exercises using just a chair (kitchen, desk, or arm chair will do) and your body weight.

You’ll gain just as much strength as you would pumping iron with this home workout. Now, please be seated. 


At home workout: Strong Women ambassador Alice-Rose Miller demonstrates Bulgarian split squats in this 10 minute workout using only a chair

1. Steady the chair on a non-slip surface or prop it against a wall. 

2. With your back towards the chair, place one foot in front of you and the toes of your opposite foot resting on top of the chair. 

3. Lower down into a one-legged lunge. Your shins should be relatively upright and the knee should not reach too far over the toes. 

4. Drive through your front foot to return to standing position. You can make this move more challenging by lowering down slowly or holding dumbbells (or wine bottles/bags of rice/any heavy item) in each hand. 

Do 10 reps 


At home workout: Strong Women ambassador Alice-Rose Miller demonstrates chair dips in this 10 minute workout using only a chair

1. Sit on the floor in front of the chair, with your back against the seat and knees bent in front of you (heels on the floor). 

2. Raise your hands to place palms face down onto the edge of the seat. Keep the hands shoulder-width apart, with fingers facing the same direction as your toes. 

3. Bend the knees so your legs are at a right angle, with your bum off the floor – or take the more advanced variation of keeping the legs straight with your heels touching the ground. 

4. Open up through the collar bone without overextending the chest, and slowly bend elbows to lower your body down. 

5. Push back up through your hands. Remember to keep the shoulders down and away from the ears, and your bum close to the bench throughout the move.

Do 10 reps 


At home workout: Strong Women ambassador Alice-Rose Miller demonstrates elevated press-ups in this 10 minute workout using only a chair

1. These are a great way to work up to a full press-up. Begin by placing your hands on the chair, slightly wider than shoulder width. Extend your arms straight and kick your feet out behind you so that your toes touch the floor behind you. 

2. Squeeze your glute muscles and draw your belly button in to tighten your core. 

3. Start bending the arms as you lower your chest towards the chair. Maintaining the tension, push away to come back up to your elevated high plank.

Do 10 reps.

Rest for 60 seconds. Repeat the entire set 2 more times (3 rounds total).  

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Chloe Gray

Chloe Gray is the senior writer for's fitness brand Strong Women. When she's not writing or lifting weights, she's most likely found practicing handstands, sipping a gin and tonic or eating peanut butter straight out of the jar (not all at the same time).

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