Global Bodyweight Training - Mike Fitch
Horizontal squat with press, on South Beach

How do you transform a great weight loaded exercise into an equally effective Bodyweight exercise? It may take a little creativity and some basic understanding of movement but it can be done. And more often then not, the bodyweight exercise turns out to be extremely challenging and, well, pretty bad-ass.

Just think about the last time you were walking through the gym and spotted someone sitting down doing a good ole fashioned dumbbell shoulder press. You probably wouldn’t think much about it. However, if you happened to pass by someone repping out some handstand pushups, you would at least take a second look. Probably even give them that fight club-esque look, that let’s them know you understand that they are pushing them selves to the next level, and you get it.

So how do you replicate a killer exercise using just your own body weight and gravity? It’s actually kind of simple. Just figure out the muscles being used or the “patterns” and try to think about what position your body must be in to replicate those patterns if gravity is the constant. For example, going back to our comparison between the shoulder press and the hand stand push up – it’s still the same pattern, but since we choose not to push dumbbells or barbbells up into the air, we just flip our selves upside down and push our own weight up instead.

But what if we have a compound movement like a squat press? Well, let’s break it down. There’s a squatting pattern, an overhead pressing pattern and the necessary trunk stabilization to connect the two movements. But, when doing the squat press purely as a bodyweight exercise, just squatting while pressing your own arms up into the air isn’t going to cut it once you’re beyond the beginner stage. We need to make a little more challenging for more advanced fitness enthusiasts.

We’ve found some creative and extremely challenging ways to replicate the squat press patterns, using just our own bodyweight outside of the gym.

So check out this video and see how we do it at GBT! And get ready for a seriously FULL BODY MOVEMENT!

Published by Mike Fitch

Mike is the founder of Global Bodyweight Training. He has more than 12 years as a fitness professional encompassing a wide range of disciplines which he draws upon to create the GBT system.

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  1. Tried these and was able to do solid sets of 5 each. I totally felt like the movement engaged my entire body. a really great compound exercise that i feel increase both strength as well as finer tuned stabilization.

    1. Dave, keep training this movement and I have no doubt you’ll be busting out sets of 15 in no time. The key is constant tension throughout the whole movement! Keep up the hard work my friend.

  2. a great full body workout if you’re pressed for time. maximum effort in minimum time.thanks

    1. So true Rich! Give this one a shot and you’ll be amazed at how many muscles are on and workin hard!

  3. Hey Mike, love the look of this one! I’m a big fan of training outside in the fresh air
    now I just need to find some bench’s in my area that will allow me to try this!
    keep up the good work man.

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