6 exercises you can do in your car

Waiting in your car doesn’t have to be idle time. Try these quick and simple workouts instead!

Many of us spend more time behind the wheel of a car than we’d like – and waiting in the car, whether for your kids, partner, or for an appointment, can feel like a real time-suck.

If you want to make those minutes more productive, we've got a way to turn your wait time into a workout. Just follow the driver’s seat strength drills below while you're parked up.

If you've got a tennis ball you can keep in the glove box, even better. If not, don't worry; these exercises can also be done just using your body for resistance.

1. Adductor (inner thigh) exercise  

Position a tennis ball between your knees and give it a powerful squeeze with your inner thighs, holding a few seconds with each contraction. Complete two sets of 15 reps to start, working up to four sets over time.

2. Chest and shoulders exercise

With a tennis ball between the palms of your hands, interlace fingers over the top of the ball. Raise elbows out to the side in line with your chest. Begin pushing palms toward one another, then releasing. Feel the work in your chest and shoulders. Complete two sets of 15 reps to start, working up to four sets over time.

3. Forearms exercise 

Strengthen your forearms to help with gardening, carrying kids, or anything that requires a strong grip. Wrap the fingers of one hand around your tennis ball and squeeze using maximum strength for one second, followed by one second of relaxation. Complete 15 reps on each side, aiming for two sets with each arm.

4. Calves exercise

With both feet flat on the floor of the car, perform 20 heel raises with each leg. Alternate sides and complete two sets for each leg. To increase difficulty, position the tennis ball under the ball of your foot and complete leg raises with a greater range of motion.

5. Core exercise

Sit up tall in the seat of your car, making a straight line from your tailbone to the crown of your head. Draw your belly button towards your spine, then engage your abdominal muscles. Focus on your lower abdomen, just below the naval and above the pubic bone. Hold engaged muscles for fifteen seconds, working up to one minute. Perform 2-4 sets.

6. Glutes exercise

Tone your tushy using a similar technique to the core exercise above. Engage your glutes while sitting tall in your car seat. Hold these muscles for fifteen seconds, working up to one minute. Perform 2-4 sets.

Finally, treat yourself to a well-deserved foot massage! Take off your shoes and position the ball under the sole of your foot. Roll the ball across the entire bottom of your foot, releasing the plantar tendon. Spend as much time as required to feel fully relaxed.

This article was created by Laurie Lethert Kocanda, an ACE certified fitness professional and co-author of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom.