Examples of Exercises for Muscular Endurance (with Video)
Muscular endurance is one of the many parameters of fitness. High levels of muscular endurance are necessary for people who make repetitive muscle movements for extended periods of time. This would translate into sports like soccer, tennis, or being a marathon runner, where you are constantly relying on the ability of a muscle to perform for a longer period of time.
Certain occupations might also require muscle endurance, such as massage therapy and waiting tables, and muscular endurance is certainly key in weightlifting and weight loss. To increase muscular strength and endurance through exercise, you will need to perform exercises with low weight and complete a high number of reps.
Push-ups are upper body muscular endurance bodyweight exercises that target multiple muscle groups, but mainly your chest and arms. Push-ups have a very low risk of injury and can be done in a variety of ways.
- Lie face-down on the floor with your hands slightly wider apart than shoulder-width and your toes hip-width apart
- In a controlled motion, push yourself up, tighten your core and straighten your back
- Slowly lower yourself down until your chest is within a fist-width of the floor then push back up
Repeat for 15 to 25 reps. If you cannot repeat 15 to 25 repetitions with your toes on the floor, start with your knees on the floor. The key to building endurance is to do a high amount of reps!
Dips work your triceps, which are found on the backs of your upper arms. Triceps are an integral part of most upper body strength training exercises as well as most muscular endurance exercises for the upper body. When you improve muscular endurance in your triceps, it can translate into daily chores like putting away dishes.
- Place your hands on the edge of a weight bench and extend your legs out straight. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart, your fingers should be wrapped under the bench and your heels should be on the ground
- In a controlled motion, lower yourself down by bending your elbows
Once your upper arms parallel the floor, push back up and repeat 15 to 25 times. You can make this exercise easier by doing your reps with your knees bent.
Supermans are another one of the best exercises to build muscle strength and endurance. These back strength builders and they are done from a face-down position on the floor.
- Extend your arms in front of your body and keep your legs straight.
- In a steady movement, raise your arms and legs simultaneously by contracting your back muscles.
- Briefly hold, lower your arms and legs and repeat 15 to 25 times.
According to the American Council on Exercise, you should avoid raising your head or arching your back throughout.
Squat throws are several steps up from a basic bodyweight squat, done with a medicine ball. They are one of several muscular endurance training exercises that create upper and lower body muscle endurance simultaneously.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold the ball in front of your chest firmly
- Slowly lower yourself down into a squat, explosively jump in the air and throw the ball as high as possible
After the ball lands, quickly pick it up, reposition your body and repeat 15 to 25 times.
The calf muscles are important for not just jumping, but also basic things like walking or running long distances for long periods of time. For that reason, calf raises are an awesome exercise to include in your endurance and resistance training program.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your arms at your sides
- In a controlled fashion, lift up onto your tip toes by contracting your calf muscles
- Once you do this, hold for a second, lower yourself down and repeat for 15 to 25 reps
You can increase the challenge by placing the balls of your feet on a step. In weight training, lifters will often do calf raises with a barbell, adding a certain amount of weight to make the calf raises more challenging.
In all physical activities, your core is used in one way or another. Your core serves as a focal point in nearly all movements throughout your entire body- hence why it is super important to train your core with endurance activities and exercises. A v-up is an abdominal muscle endurance exercise that is performed from a face-up position.
- Extend your arms behind your head and straighten your legs
- Simultaneously lift your arms and legs off the floor and fold your body into a "V" shape
- When you do this, balance on your butt and try to touch your hands to your toes
- Slowly lower yourself down and repeat 15 to 25 times
One of the great benefits of muscular endurance in your core is that your body relies heavily on it for nearly all bodily movement, therefore, you may want to do more than just one core exercise. Other popular exercises to do are sit-ups, crunches, and Russian dumbbell twists.
Tuck jumps can target your lower body and core simultaneously in your training session.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and place your arms at your sides or cross them in front of your chest
- After doing a slight squat, jump in the air forcefully and tuck your knees into your chest
- As soon as you land, immediately do another tuck jump. Continue for 15 to 25 reps