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Body-Weight Boot Camp

Boot camps are the perfect format for encouraging participants to move beyond their comfort zones. To mix it up for your deskbound clients, consider offering a boot camp program that uses the most portable, functional and effective piece of training equipment on the market: your body! A body-weight program that works every muscle, movement and energy system in a 45-minute format requires a certain amount of creativity and energy in order to provide a fun, challenging workout for participants.

Since this boot camp does not rely on equipment or gym space and involves a large amount of people, it becomes a cost-effective revenue model for fitness professionals.

The key is to create an environment that encourages interaction and play. Do this by focusing on the following:

Partner Games

Play “Partner Tag” to encourage participants to interact. Have two people face off and play a game of tag where both are “it.” They have to stay in a confined area and try to tag one another. Keep track of points to make this partner exercise fun and competitive.


Time for a little ooohh-raaahhh! Learn some classic military cadence chants, or invent your own. Have your class “sing back” as you’re exercising. This technique gets them to laugh and be silly!

Be a Drill Instructor!

Take a basic exercise and give it a boot camp twist to get people to work hard and have fun while doing so. For example, as participants complete a push-up have them follow along while you call out, “When you’re up, you’re up; when you’re down, you’re down; when you’re only half way up, you’re neither all the way up nor all the way down.” Don’t let anyone “fall out.” Participants love an instructor that is loud and “in charge.”


Create an obstacle course by completing a round of exercises; for example:

  • Jump over a partner lying on the ground.
  • Crawl across the floor.
  • Complete 10 push-ups.
  • Shuffle around a line of people.
  • Navigate environmental obstacles, such as playground equipment, tree stumps, etc.

Eclectic Exercise Regime

Throw a twist into standard games, exercises and competitions. Try counting out loud in roman numerals to make people think and laugh. Have an “amazing race” day, when teams have to complete certain tasks. Be creative and engaging—and have fun!

Join Brett Klika as he demonstrates over 20 body-weight exercises and shares creative boot camp ideas during his session, “Body-Weight Boot Camp,” at the IDEA Fitness Fusion Conference™, April 22-25, 2010 in Rosemont, Illinois. For more information, go to www.ideafit.com/conference/idea-fitness-fusion-2010.

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