Picnic Table Workouts

How to get creative with your fitness this summer.
Published June 28, 2022

A great workout doesn’t have to have fancy equipment or even a gym – sometimes all you need is your own bodyweight and a picnic table.

Yep, you read that right – you can get a great workout with just a picnic table. If you’ve been looking for ways to get creative with your fitness, this summer is the perfect time. You’ll likely be spending time outside in parks anyway, why not try to get a creative workout in, too? Here are some moves you can try.

Certified personal trainer Shalama Jackson recommends using both the tabletop and the seat side of the picnic table to get in a full workout.

“Picnic table exercises can be put together for a total body workout that doesn’t require any jumping or bounding, which can be hard for some people and their knees,” she says.

Tricep dips

“For your arms, you can do tricep dips off the seat side of the table to work the back of the arms,” Jackson says.


“For your chest, you can do push-ups off the table or off the seat. The lower to the ground you go the more challenging the push-up,” Jackson explains. “If you’re feeling like you need even more of a challenge, you can do an inverted push-up with your feet on the seat side and your hands on the ground.”


For legs and glutes, Jackson recommends doing step-ups on and off the picnic seat or bodyweight squats. Make sure your picnic table is secure before starting your step-ups.


Do some simply bodyweight squats next to the picnic table. You can use the seat as your guide for how low to go.

Oblique crunches

Tyler Sellers, senior coach at Total Shape, suggests trying oblique crunches to work your core. You could do these lying on the picnic table, or on the grass nearby if that’s more comfortable.

Box jumps

For a workout finisher, Sellers suggests box jumps to “help gain strength and focus on lower body muscles.” Of course, you want to make sure your picnic table is secured safely to the ground and/or is heavy enough that it won’t shift under you.