5 Go-To Exercises for a Hotel Room Workout

July 20, 2015

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Written by PROBAR athlete and professional skier Griffin Post, who spends a good chunk of time each year in hotel rooms around the world.

Hotel rooms suck. They do. The heinous duvet covers, the stiff pillows, the art above the beds that would be a tough sell at even the most discounted garage sales, it all combines into one extremely mundane aesthetic that, no matter where you are, reminds you that you’re definitely not at home. I end up spending a lot of time calling these drab boxes home, however, and have come to work out a system to at least make these places useful, if they can’t be enjoyable.

A hotel room workout might sound a little dorky/aggressive (maybe because it is), but it beats flipping through unfamiliar channels, all the while wondering how dirty is this remote? Also, there might not be a better incentive to learn to be light on your feet than trying to avoid getting hotel security called on you for having a one-person room party. When I’m in a pinch for time, running isn’t an option or the classy joint I’m staying in doesn’t have a gym, here are my go-to exercises for breaking a sweat with a hotel room workout:


Touch-jump-touch (60 Seconds)

Touch that gross hotel carpet, bound up as high as you can, touch said carpet again and take two shuffle steps one direction and repeat the process. The space between the bed and the TV usually provides ample space.

Pro tip: Turn off ceiling fan




Leg blasters

10 x lunges in place (5 each leg)

10 x air squats

10 x jumping lunges in place (5 each leg)

5 x jumping squats

Pro tip: this may sound easy, but I assure you it will make you sore.


Burpees (x10)

I originally thought this was an exercise my crazy Kiwi soccer coach only used as punishment during practice, but turns out it has validity outside of New Zealand football clubs. Starting in a push up position, do a push up, jump to your feet and bound upwards, returning to push up position.


Seated Russian Twist (30 seconds)

Find an object in the room that’s heavy yet easy to hold (a chair or my duffle are usually my go-tos). Resting on your butt with your feet slightly off the ground, twist the object back and forth, gently touching the ground with the random object on each side of you.

Pro tip: those heinous duvet covers can be folded into a pretty soft mat.


probar hotel room workout


Front Plank (60 seconds)

Turn on the television and find Judge Judy or similar daytime courtroom show. Bracing yourself on your forearms in the push up position, maintain the plank position for 1 minute, keeping your back flat and your core tight. The ridiculousness and temptation to laugh at the television will both provide a distraction and make this exercise more difficult.

I’d recommend starting off doing this circuit five times in a row, and adjusting from there. Depending on what time of year it is, I may adjust this to emphasize a specific muscle group. And remember, being light on your feet will help keep your neighbors at bay. Should any of them come over to complain, simply invite them in to join in your work out. That should teach them to keep away.