What is cardio exercise?

September 16, 2022

What is cardio exercise?
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Cardiovascular exercise also referred to as cardio or aerobic exercise, is critical for good health. It raises your heart rate, causing your blood to flow more quickly. This circulates more oxygen throughout your body, preserving the health of your heart and lungs. The following exercises can be done about anywhere, such as at home, in a public park, or outdoor space. People can select exercises based on their existing fitness level. They may also progress to more complicated movements as their fitness improves.

Some beginner moves to start off with

High Knees

Since this exercise involves running in one place, it can be done anywhere with little space. You will have to place your feet together and your arms at your sides. Then, raise one knee to your chest. For the best results pump your arms up and down while alternating knees.

Butt Kicks

Butt kicks are indeed the antithesis of high knees. Instead of raising your knees, you raise your heels toward your buttocks. Place your hands at your sides and your feet together. Bring one heel up to your buttocks. Lower your foot, then repeat with the opposite heel. Pump your arms while switching heels.

Lateral Shuffles

Lateral shuffles raise your heart rate while strengthening your side-to-side coordination. Place your feet hip-width apart and your knees and hips bent. Lean slightly forward and stiffen your core muscles. Maintain your form by lifting your right foot, pushing off your left foot, and moving right. Put both of your feet together. Continue to move to the right. Repeat the process on the opposite side.  Rotate left and right for the same amount of space to evenly work both sides.

Crab Walk

The crab walk is an enjoyable way to get your blood flowing. It also works on your back, core, and legs while strengthening your upper arms. Set your feet flat on the ground and bend your knees. Place your hands underneath your shoulders, fingers forward. Raise your hips away from the ground. “Walk” backward with your arms and legs, distributing your weight evenly between them. Continue to walk backward until you reach your destination.

Standing Oblique Crunch

This low-impact cardio exercise is ideal for beginners. The essential muscles on your sides will be engaged as you raise your knees. Position your feet shoulder-width away. Position your hands behind your head, with your elbows pointing outward. Lower your right elbow and raise your right knee as you bend to the right.. Return to the starting point. Rep on the opposite side.

Speed Skaters

This exercise’s sideways movement mimics that of a skater. To make it more difficult, add a jump when moving to the side. Begin in a curtsy lunge with your knees bent and your right leg in the diagonal direction behind you. Straighten your left arm while bending your right. Push off your left leg to propel your right leg forward. Change your arms and move your leg diagonally behind you.

Jumping Jacks

Jumping jacks are a great full-body workout. This traditional move engages your entire body while raising your heart rate. Place your hands at your sides and your feet together. Slightly bend your knees. Jump to your feet and spread your legs wider than shoulder-width apart, lifting your arms overhead. Go to the centre. Repeat.

Toe Taps

This is a simple, low-impact exercise that can be performed on a curb or the bottom step of a staircase. Place yourself close to the curb or step. Place one foot on top, toes down. Quickly switch legs to place the other foot on top. Continue to alternate your feet. Move left or right while doing toe taps as you get used to the movement.

A few intermediate exercises to up your game of physical fitness

Squat Jumps

The usual squat is a weight training exercise that focuses on the lower body. You can make it an exploding cardio workout by adding a jump. Begin by placing your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down by bending your knees. Return your arms. Move your arms up and jump quickly.

Standing Alternating Toe Touches

This exercise engages your arms, core, and legs, making it an excellent full-body cardio exercise. Spread your feet shoulder-width apart and keep your arms at your sides. Prepare your core. Straighten your right leg. Raise your left hand up and over while reaching for your right toes. Do the same with your right leg and hand. Repeat this with your right leg and hand.

Lunge Jumps

Lunge jumps, a combination of jumps and normal lunges, will get your heart rate up. Begin in a lunge by bending both knees at 90 degrees. Step forward with your feet. Lower your shoulders and swing your arms back, bracing your abs. Swing your arms up and jump quickly. Simultaneously change legs. Lunge to the ground. Repeat.

Box Jumps

The box jump is a cardio exercise that works the lower body, specifically the buttocks, thighs, calves, and shins. Set up in front of a knee-high box or platform. Set your feet hip-width apart and your arms by your sides. Activate your core. Bring your knees and hips forward, keeping your back flat. Swing your arms up and leap onto the box with force. Land gently, leaning slightly forward. Return to the box. Repeat.

Plank Jacks

This is similar to a horizontal jumping jack. It forces your arms to support your weight while your legs move quickly. Bring your feet together closer. Jump with your feet wider than your shoulders. Repeat from the plank position.

Advanced exercises to make things more interesting

Mountain Climbers

The mountain climber is a full-body workout. If you’re new to moving, begin slowly and gradually increase your speed. Switch quickly, bringing your right knee out and your left knee in. Continue to alternate legs.

Plank Ski hops

Plank ski hops, also known as plank skiers, combine planks and rotational jumps. The turning movement of the jump will put your strength and endurance to the test. Begin in a plank position, hands under shoulders, and body straight. Bring your legs closer together. Jump your feet to the right, rotating your knees to place them outside your right elbow. Continue to keep your legs together. Return to a plank position. Rep on the opposite side.

Diagonal Jumps

The lunge jump is advanced with the diagonal jump. You’ll rotate your body during each jump instead of facing forward for an extra heart-pumping move. Begin in the lunge position, with both knees bent at ninety degrees. Turn your body toward the room’s right corner. Brace your abs, lower your shoulders, and move your arms back. Swing your arms up quickly, jump, and switch legs. Land in a lunge with your back to the left corner. Continue to jump and switch legs.


The burpee, which consists of a squat, jump, and pushup, works your entire body. Place your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat with your hands on the floor. Jump with your feet away into a plank position. Perform one pushup. Return to a squat by jumping your feet back. Jump up and extend your arms upward. Repeat.

The best way to get the most out of the workout

Follow these guidelines to gain the advantages of cardio without injuring yourself:

  • Warm-up – Each session must begin with a 5 to 10-minute warmup. This will increase the blood flow and relax your muscles, reducing your chances of injury.
  • Cool down – Rather than instantly halting your exercises, slow down during the last 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Invite a friend – Working out with a friend is always more enjoyable.
  • Aim for 150 minutes – During the week, aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate activity. You can do 30-minute sessions five days a week to spread this out over time.

People also ask

1. What are the 3 main exercises for cardio?

The cardio exercises are differentiated into three types. Basic exercises, Intermediate, and advanced exercises. The intensity of the exercises increases as the level of exercises increases.

2. Does cardio burn fat?

Cardio exercise is a great way to burn fat and lose weight. Although the appropriate amount of cardio for weight loss varies from person to person. The most effective way to burn fat is through a mix of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and weight training. And as for fasted cardio, it depends on the individual.

3. What are the benefits of cardio exercise?

Cardio exercises increase the blood flow in your body, lower blood pressure, strengthen your immune system, improve your sleep, support your mental health, and regulate your blood sugar among the other benefits of it.

Disclaimer: We recommend consulting a Doctor before taking any action based on the above shared information.



Department of Cardiology

Department of Cardiology

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