When in doubt, swing it out.
Even if it’s been more than a few years since you last stepped foot into a playground, it doesn’t take much to bring those childhood memories of windblown hair and carefree summer days rushing back.
Which is why Bethany Meyers, director of training and development at SLT, makes sure to work the playground staple into her routine all summer long.
“It’s so simple, but I always go to the park and swing in the summertime,” she explains. “The way the sun moves across your face and body when you swing forward and back—It relaxes me so much and makes me feel like a kid again. It just makes me happy!”
But stress relief isn’t the only benefit; once you’re done swinging it out, put the set to work as your very own pseudo-reformer. “After I swing, I have two go-to ab exercises that I do so I’ve maximized my time,” says Meyers. “They’re tough though, so don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
Ready for the challenge? Once you’ve swung it out, try out Meyer’s tough swing set workout (below!) at your nearest park.
Move 1: Plank to Pike
1. Start with hands on the ground and step your feet onto the swing, holding a plank position.
2. Draw the low belly in and lift the hips. At the top of the pike, hold for 3 seconds and try to make your feet feel lighter on the swing—this will release the front of the hips and pull the weight to where you really want it (AKA your abs). Move slowly and complete 20 reps.
Move 2: Sliding Plank
1. Place your forearms on the swing with your back flat. Slide forward to a plank position, keeping the elbows under the shoulders. If you can’t press all the way to the plank don’t worry, the more you practice the more you’ll be able to extend your range.
2. Holding the plank, send the arms forward to extend the swing out in front of the body. Be careful! It’s tough, but even just an inch forward will activate your back muscles will tighten the core. Do 20 reps.
Ready to have your best summer ever? Check out our complete Healthy Summer Hot List, featuring even more fun tips (from the coolest influencers in the wellness world) for getting the most out of the season.