Papaya Leaves

Health Benefits of Papaya Leaves

Papaya, which previously often called the fruit of the angels by Christopher Columbus, is a tropical fruit that originated from North America, mostly in Mexico. But, right in the moment, papaya fruit is widely grown all over the world which have tropic climate. Papaya plant can  grow to the height of 30 meters and  commonly has purple flowers and yellow fruits.

We bet that you wouldn’t be surprised that papaya fruit contain a lot of benefits for your health because papaya fruit, like any other fruits, commonly known as the healthy foods. But, do you know that papaya leaf could also bring you totally diverse health benefits? In this article, we already have 20 health benefits that you could get for your body if you maximize the use of papaya leaves.

Reduce the Symptoms of Dengue

If you’re experiencing some symptoms like fever, skin rash, headache, muscle and joint point, you are probably suffering from dengue. But, that is the common ones. If you’re experiencing any dangerous symptoms like blood plasma leakage, low platelet count, and bleeding, you’re probably suffering from the dangerous disease called hemorrhagic fever. Dengue fever is a deadly disease caused by the virus called Aedes mosquito

Some studies indicate that papaya leaves contain enzymes like chymopapain and papain that can boost and normalize the platelet count and the liver damage caused by dengue disease and then it also will aid the recovery from dengue disease.


Other health benefits of papaya leaf is its anti-malaria properties. Papaya leaves have been proven to be very efficient to prevent you from malaria. Some studies indicate that the bitter taste from papaya leaves can be very effective to get rid of malaria out of your body. So, you’re strongly suggested to drink some papaya leaf juice when you’re attacked by malaria.

Healthier Skin

Do you know that papaya leaf contains higher Vitamin A and Vitamin C than the fruit? This high contain of Vitamin C means that papaya leaves could release antioxidant which will fight against free radicals. This antioxidant would be very beneficial to prevent your skin from any skin disease like acne, wrinkles, and heavy pigmentation. Your skin will always glow naturally, then it will boost your overall appearance and confidence too.

Fight Viral Infection

Papaya leaf is also commonly known for its ability to fight against infection caused by virus such as common cold or influenza. The various components of vitamin like Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E will boost your immune system. Thus, papaya leaves can be very useful to keep you healthy and stay away from any viral infections.

Reduce Menstrual Pain

Papaya leaves turn out to be a good solution during your menstrual period. Sometimes, it could be really painful when you’re in your menstrual period. To reduce the pain, you can use one papaya leaf, add some tamarind and salt, then add water to that mixture, and then boil it and simmer it. That ingredient has been proved to its efficacy to reduce the menstrual pain.

Curing Emphysema

Emphysema is one of the deadly disease that comprises Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). This disease is widely associated with gradual damage of lung tissue, including the destruction of the alveoli. To prevent you from this emphysema disease, you need a sufficient amount of Vitamin D. Papaya leaves contain pretty high amounts of Vitamin D which will protect your body from disease associated with emphysema lung.

Cleansing Agent

Papaya leaves could be very beneficial for cleansing agent, especially if you make the papaya leaves as a juice. Thanks to the compound called karpain that contained in papaya leaves. This karpain will prevent the growth of microorganism and other toxins from your body, thus it will make your skin become healthier because you will be avoided from skin problems like blemishes, pimples, and freckles.

Curing Eczema

Papaya leaves could also be a good solution to treat against eczema disease. Eczema is one of the kind inflammation on the skin, which characterized by itchy, vesicular, weeping, and crusting patches. Papaya leaves turn out have a great ability as an anti-inflammatory, since it can cure your eczema. You could apply the papaya leaves to the area of your body that affected by the eczema after scrubbing.

Good for Hair Treatment

Papaya leaf is also commonly used as a hair treatment in many salon or health care stores. Papaya leaves could bring a great benefit for your hair since it will add some shine if your hair, especially when you make these papaya leaves as a juice, and then you mix it up with honey or coconut milk.


As already mentioned above, papaya leaves contain a compound called karpain. This karpain turns out to be a great source to get rid of dirt and oil out of the hair, as well as strengthening your hair without any side effects. So, rather than buying shampoo and throwing out your money, you need to consider this herbal plant as an anti-dandruff for your hair.

Regulate Menstruation Disorder

Well, you already know that papaya leaves can be really helpful to reduce and alleviate your pain caused by menstruation. The good news is, papaya leaves could offer you more than that. Since papaya leaves have healing properties and very potent to balance your hormones, these leaves could help you reduce the pre-menstrual syndrome symptoms and also regulate the menstruation cycle.

Lowering the Sugar Blood Levels

For everyone of you that might have some concerns related to diabetes diseases, this is a good news for you. Papaya leaves could stimulate the insulin activity in the body, thus it will help you to regulate the blood sugar levels and you’ll be more likely to avoid from diabetes disease. Also, papaya leaves could decrease the possibilities of having complications caused by diabetes like kidney damage. Papaya leaves also could reduce the oxidative stress that can lead to diabetes.

Increase Platelets

Whenever you suffer from vitamins deficiency, dengue, or chemotherapy side effects, the amount of platelets in the body will be low. If these happen, you need to consume papaya leaves as soon as possible because these leaves can be beneficial to increase the amount of platelets in your body. A lot of research that conducted in around the world evidence that consuming papaya leaves could improve the amount of platelets in your body rapidly.

Inhibit the Growth of Bacteria

One of the health benefits of papaya leaf is preventing the growth of bacteria, especially the bad bacteria that can cause some problems in your intestines. Some studies evidence that papaya leaves contain more than 50 active ingredients that can prevent you from bad bacteria. The karpain compound that contained in papaya leaves is one of the most important compounds that have responsibility to inhibit the growth of bad bacteria in your body. Tannin compound in papaya leaves also beneficial to inhibit the growth of worms that could be attached to your intestinal system.

Curing Gastric Ulcers

According to research that published in The West Indian Medical Student, papaya leaves also contain compounds that can prevent you from gastric ulcers. The researchers found out that consuming papaya leaves can increase the activity of glutathione peroxidase, one of the important antioxidant which will fight against free radicals.

The research on papaya leaves conducted in rats. They divided into two groups, one group of rats pre-treated with papaya leaves and the other one is not. The result of that research was the group of rats that have papaya leaves in their body shown less oxidative stress and had the reduction of ulcer formation compared with the other group.


Papaya leaves contain more than 50 amino acids such as glutamate acid, glycine, valine, leucine, tryptophan, cysteine, histidine, and many more. All of these amino acids are commonly used as ingredients of commercial cosmetics in the department stores for the healthy and young looking skin. So, these papaya leaves is by far cheaper than those commercial cosmetics that sometimes can cause you some side effects.

Support the Digestive System

It is revealed that papaya leaf could support the work of your digestive system. The papain, chymopapain, protease, and amylase enzymes that contained in papaya leaves will be very useful to break down the nutrients like protein, carbohydrate, and mineral from the food that you just ate, thus it will support the digestive system.

This leaf will also protect you from digestive diseases or curing them because based on studies, papaya leaves contain anti-microbial agents by killing harmful bacteria called H.Pylori which will cause  peptic ulcers.

Prevent Coronary Artery Disease

Coronary artery disease could be possibly happen if you have a high amount of cholesterol levels in your body. To prevent you from this disease, you need a lot of Vitamin C that contained in papaya leaves, which then will release antioxidants that can boost  the circulation of the blood flow in the body. These antioxidants from papaya leaves could really useful too to protect the health of your heart from coronary artery disease.

Prostate Enlargement

Although this benefit needs further research, but papaya leaves, if you consume it as a tea, can be really useful to benign the prostate enlargement and every disease associated with prostate enlargement.

Anti-Cancer Properties

This is probably one the most important benefits that the papaya leaves could offer for your health. Papaya leaves contain a compound called acetogenin. This compound is widely known for its efficacy against various types of cancer.

There are many research that already proved that papaya leaf is an effective weapon for cancer. A study in Japan revealed that the cancer cells in the some people can be shut down when they are drinking papaya leaves concoction constantly in daili routine. A reseach that published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology showed that papaya leaf is one of the herbal cure that can protect you from human cancers in vitro such as breast cancer, lung cancer, and cervical cancer.

Tips on How to Consume It

Since papaya leaves contain tons of greatness for your body, you need to try this herbal plant as the remedy of various diseases that occur to you. But, some of you might be wondering how to serve it so you can get the full advantage of it. Here are some consumption tips for papaya leaves and the steps how to making it.

Papaya Leaves as Juice

You can make papaya leaves as a juice, so you will enjoy it more when you’re consuming this healthy herbal pant. Here are some steps how to make papaya leaf juice.

Put your juicer and blender onAdd several papaya leaves, about 10 pieces of leaf might be enough. Add some water and then just blend it until the mixture of water and the leaves is smooth enough.After that, pour it in a glass and you could drink it immediately. But, if you don’t want to consume it immediately, you can refrigerate it for up to 4 days after you make it.You could add some sugars for taste, so it wouldn’t too bitter.Papaya Leaves as Tea

You can also make papaya leaves as a tea, this papaya tea would be a perfect variation if you want to try to drink papaya leaf other than a juice. Here are some steps on how to make it

Take several papaya leaves, 10 pieces of leaf could be enough, and then wash them and dried them.Tear the papaya leaves apart, and then put them in a sauce pan. Add for about 2 liters of water. Boil it until the half of the water still remained.Strain the liquid, discard the leaves and you can consume it immediately. But, if you don’t want to consume it immediately, you can put the papaya leaf juice in the refrigerator for up to 4 days since you make it.Since the papaya leaf juice might be bitter and not everyone of you can stand the bitter taste of papaya leaf juice, you might add a little bit sugar or honey for some taste.Papaya Leaves as Face Mask

Other than consuming it as a beverage, you could also consume papaya leaves externally. Papaya leaves, as already stated in the health benefits section, can be very beneficial for your beauty skin. Here are some steps on how to apply papaya leaves as a facial mask.

Take several papaya leaves, 2 to 4 leaves might be sufficient.Dried those papaya leaves naturally under the sun.Tears the papaya leaves apart in small pieces. Sprinkle some honey to the mashed papaya leaves.Apply those mashed mixture in all over your face. Wait for about 20 minutes.After 20 minutes, wash your face with the cold water.

Papaya Leaves Side Effects and Warnings

Although papaya leaves will bring you tons of greatness for your health, but there are few side effects and warning related to these papaya leaves. Here are few side effects and warnings that you must consider before starting to consume papaya leaves, whether as a juice, tea, or apply it on your face.

Stimulate Some Allergies

The papain enzyme that contained in papaya leaves is widely known for its side effects that can stimulate some allergies. According to a study published in the Journal Ugeskrift  for Laeger, 10 out of 22 employers who were exposed by papain dust in the laboratory showed some allergy symptoms in their body, such as itchy eyes and runny nose.

Potentially Harmful for Pregnant Women

There is a suggestion that you better not to consume papaya, especially taken by mouth, when you’re pregnant. There is some evidence that unprocessed papain, of the enzyme that can be found in papaya leaves, might be poisonous for the fetus and can cause the birth defects. Although further research still needed, but you’re strongly suggested to not consuming papaya leaves during your pregnancy.

So, now you already know everything about papaya leaves. These leaves are truly good for the health of every part of your body, thus we strongly recommend you to give these leaves a try. But remember that these leaves have a bitter taste, so you need a little bid of sugar or honey to reduce the bitterness of it. Stay healthy with papaya leaves.

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Specific Training For Andropause And Menopause Symptoms

Whilst resistance training as a whole will benefit the conditions discussed, there are some subtle specifics that can lead to faster improvements.

Generally, the differences in training are not significant, as a strong focus on the above 10 principles will lead to vast improvements themselves.

Training and Menopause in Women

However, with menopause, the devil is in the detail. As we know, there is a decline in the ovarian production of oestrogen and progesterone, which act as ‘controls’ for cortisol and insulin.

It is often the case that in these women, they will be more stress-sensitive, and as such, this should be factored into their exercise regime.

During intense and long-duration exercise, cortisol is produced. In order to produce a positive adaptive response to exercise, cortisol is necessary and very beneficial.

During resistance exercise in particular, the rise in anabolic hormones in combination with cortisol provide a very healthy and beneficial response, whereby the body will work to lose fat and build muscle.

However, many women fall into the trap of partaking in too much long-duration exercise, in the hope that doing lots of repetitive motion will lead to more calories expended and more fat loss.

The ‘calories in/calories out’ equation is fundamental to weight loss, but for these women in search of body recomposition, we must look at it from a slightly different angle, whereby we balance out the often ‘off the rails’ hormonal system.

Therefore, shorter intense bursts of exercise will be more beneficial; weight training, high-intensity interval training, metabolic conditioning, and limiting their workouts to no more than 45-60 minutes.

Perhaps what’s more important from a physiological standpoint for menopausal women is the act of balancing their yin and yang, so to speak.

This means including relaxing activities such as walking, yoga, Tai Chi, meditation and different types of massage. By creating a smarter stress-inducing exercise regime, they can help stir their menopausal physiology to work in their favour.

Training and Andropause in Men

In terms of andropause, the message is similar for men, with a strong emphasis on heavy (relatively speaking), intense bouts of resistance training.

There is a need to use resistance training to drive up the anabolic response, and help regain some of the endocrine plasticity that we discussed in Part 1 of this series.

Research tends to point at high volume with moderate to high intensity, utilising short rest periods and big compound moves for best hormonal responses across all age groups. (1)

For these guys, incorporating the 10 principles will work perfectly in priming their physiology to regain their manhood.


It’s clear from the scientific research and the results we get with hundreds of our clients in their 40s, 50s and 60s that resistance training is extremely beneficial for your fitness, brain function, mobility, muscle mass and strength, and overall health-span as you age.

It’s never too late to start some form of resistance training – whether you’re 19 or 90. But ensuring you follow the 10 principles set out in this article is key to ensuring you get the maximum benefits from resistance exercise, while training safely, intelligently and with purpose.

Having a professional Personal Trainer create a bespoke exercise programme designed around your capabilities, needs and personal goals is always advisable.


Age is just a number! Whatever your starting point, you can, and will be able to achieve your body composition goals and the myriad of benefits that come with weight training,  That's IF you do it the right way.


The benefits of resistance training as you get older are truly astounding.

If you’re looking to slow down ageing and stay younger and vibrant through your 40s, 50s, 60s and well beyond, then science shows again and again that resistance training with weights is vital.

Improved brain function, health, metabolism, blood sugar control and overall decreased risk of all-cause mortality are just some of the headline benefits of lifting weights we discussed in-depth in Part 1.

But here we take this potentially life-changing scientific knowledge a step further and show you how we create training programs with hundreds of clients over 40 at UP to get them in the best shape of their lives.

When we read about the ‘inevitable’ onset of sarcopenia and how we will waste away as we approach our middle ages, we call B.S.

We have seen too many cases of middle-aged clients building muscle and losing fat at rates equal to, sometimes even better than our younger clients, to know this is not true.

A look at some of the transformations scattered through this four-part series are clear-cut evidence.

Rob proving that results can be equal to, or even better than those in their 20s when in your late 40s.

So how do we train clients in their 40s, 50s and beyond?

When we encounter clients in their 40s and 50s, their goals are almost always different to those in their 20s and early 30s.

The latter often come in with one goal on their mind, a complete physique transformation.

For our middle-aged clients, aesthetics is still on their mind, as remember at UP, we specialise in body composition.

However, other goals such as strength, mobility, and health also become increasingly important, and this needs to be taken into account when devising our programs.

The fact is, our middle-aged clients want to look good, but also feel a hundred times better than they did in their 20s and early 30s, which is where their lifestyle choices left them in a physical and physiological mess.

That being said, whether someone is a complete beginner or an advanced trainee, here are 10 things that are highly applicable to this age group.

1. Staying injury free

Picking up a niggle when you’re in your 40s will take a lot longer to recover from than when in your 20s, and so avoiding this will keep you training for longer, meaning a more frequent stimulus for growth, and ultimately more muscle.

Keeping yourself healthy should be a number one priority, no matter what your age group. But trainers should always remember that dropping the intensity stimulus in a middle-aged client will affect them a lot more than a younger client.

A frequent stimulus is the most important consideration for older people, so it is key to not miss out on vital training time.

2. Incorporate lots of variety in training

One of the most important variables in hypertrophy, whilst avoiding the ‘niggly’ over-use injuries so prevalent as you age, is to incorporate lots of variety in your training.

For middle-aged clients, rotating through exercises with different implements and strength curves can be a good way to stay healthy and strong.

Variety should not just be limited to exercise choice, but also exercise order. Although a slightly more advanced technique (once you learn the concept of keeping tension on a muscle), placing more stressful exercises such as squats and barbell bench presses towards the end of a workout means you can create a similar training effect albeit with less load.

3. Spend more time in ‘accumulation’ phases

As you age, periodization becomes more important – organising your training into blocks where you alternate or linearly move from accumulation (muscle growth) and intensification (maximum strength) phases is a great idea.

For the older clients, keeping the ratio of accumulation to intensification at 2:1 or 3:1 would be wise, as their joints will not be as well suited to intensification protocols.

Traditionally, intensification phases would emphasise repetition brackets of 1 to 6.

For over 40s, using one of these phases every 3 to 4 cycles, going no lower than 4 to 6 reps would be wise.

4. Increase your time under tension

Building on the previous point, one of the best ways to train as you age is to find ways to increase time under tension on your muscles and the difficulty of exercises.

Besides adding reps, experimenting with different styles of tempos (pauses, slow eccentrics, controlled tempos etc.) is highly effective in reducing joint stress, providing a different stimulus, and creating a greater muscle-building stimulus.

Another concept, briefly introduced in our previous article, is the use of low-load, high-rep training close to technical failure.

This is of particular relevance to older people, as they can utilise low loads (even something like resistance bands) to provide an introduction to resistance exercise, whilst also generating an anabolic stimulus and the beneficial impact it will provide.

5. Reduce frequency of spinal loading

Grouping lower back-intensive exercises into one day a week can be a great way to allow recovery for the often-vulnerable lower back structures.

If training the legs every three to five days, an example rotation could be to do a squat or deadlift variation one workout, and train predominantly with unilateral and machine exercises on the next, before going back to a squat or deadlift workout.

On this note, squats and deadlifts may not be necessary at all in their true form if you are a beginner with no movement capability, as this will often do more harm than good.

6. Stabilise

When encountering new trainees in their 40s and 50s, one of the key issues we see at UP is a lack of stability in their joints. So, utilising isometrics, unilateral work and slow tempos initially can help bring up this vital aspect of fitness.

7. Focus on quality

Often with beginner clients above 50, in particular, focusing on perhaps four to five exercises per workout at the maximum is all that’s needed.

Simply picking an upper body ‘push and pull’ session, and lower body ‘push and pull’, rotating, and keeping an eye on quality is an excellent way to train.

8. Warm up, mobilise and stretch

Spending 10 to 15 minutes a day on mobility and flexibility will pay huge dividends when it comes to staying healthy as you age.

For clients in their 40s and 50s, this is critical as the ability to ‘get away with’ poor posture and technique diminishes, so the need to be warm and pliable prior to, and during training, is enhanced.

9. Utilise conditioning

Cardiovascular health is always important and is a growing concern amongst anyone over 40.

As stated previously, improving work capacity will enhance the sensitivity of the muscle hypertrophy signalling pathways.

Staying ‘fit’, therefore, whether it be through improving density of resistance training, or adding further conditioning sessions, is very useful for middle-aged trainees.

10. Keep active and enjoy it

Simply staying active outside of the gym is vital, and often overlooked.

A daily walk can play huge dividends on improving many of the factors that contribute to anabolic resistance – the muscle’s reduced ability to respond to an anabolic stimulus which worsens as you age.

So finding an activity and sport you love and can enjoy with others will keep you active for decades, and help just as much as the three hours in the gym can.

Smart training can keep you looking sharp into your 50s.

Insanely TRX Moves to Sculpt Strong Upper Body

If you want to build serious upper-body strength while developing functional fitness that will help you move, feel and look your best, give TRX Suspension Training a try. Suspension Training was initially conceived of as a way for Navy SEALs to stay in shape while deployed in austere conditions with minimal gear, time or space. Now you can find these black and yellow straps in almost any gym.

They have become a go-to workout tool for personal trainers, top athletes and celebrities everywhere. The following TRX upper-body workout develops strength in your arms, chest, back and core, with movements that translate to the way you move in everyday life. Add this workout to your strength-training regimen to get a taste of how suspension training can take your fitness to the next level.


Develop mobility in your shoulders and strength in your core with this upper-body exercise. HOW TO DO IT: Stand facing away from the anchor point and hold one TRX handle in each hand. Extend your arms over your head and start with your feet together. Brace your core and focus on keeping your elbows, hips and knees in line. Step forward into a split-squat stance so that your knees are at 90-degree angles and your arms are slightly behind your head. To return, press through your arms and pull yourself to standing. Focus on keeping your core stable and your shoulders mobile.


Build strength in your chest, shoulders and triceps with this classic TRX exercise. HOW TO DO IT: Stand facing away from the anchor point, holding the handles out in front of you. Brace your core and focus on maintaining a solid plank with your body at a 45-degree angle to the floor. Lower your chest toward your hands and focus on moving your entire body in a straight line. Stop when your hands are in line with your chest. Press yourself back up in one slow, controlled movement, focusing on keeping your knees, hips and shoulders in line the entire way up.


This exercise builds strength and increases mobility in both your shoulders and hips. HOW TO DO IT: Stand facing the anchor point with your hands extended overhead and a handle in each hand. Move your hips down and back into a squat position, pushing your knees slightly outward, while simultaneously lowering your hands to shoulder level. Now drive through your heels and push your hips forward while raising your hands back overhead, maintaining straight arms until you reach the top.


Incorporate this move into your routine to increase strength and definition in your triceps while developing your core strength and improving your active plank. HOW TO DO IT: Stand facing away from the anchor point and hold the suspension trainer by the handles. Keep your elbows high and in line with your shoulders. Put your hands next to your temples with your palms facing away from your body. Brace your core as you lean forward so that your body is at a 45-degree angle to the floor. Focus on maintaining tension throughout your entire body. Press down into the handle, keeping everything stable except for your elbow joints, until your arms are fully extended. Lower your body down in one slow, controlled movement until your hands are back at the starting position.


This exercise is excellent for developing core stability and upper- and lower-back strength. HOW TO DO IT: Face the suspension trainer with your chest directly under the anchor point, holding the handles with your palms facing each other. Bend your knees to 90 degrees, brace your core and engage your glutes. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and use your lats to pull your body up until your hands are at the sides of your rib cage. Slowly lower your body back down to the starting position.


An incredible, total-body challenge, this move will strengthen your entire upper body. HOW TO DO IT: Start in a push-up position with your feet directly under the anchor point in the foot cradles of the suspension trainer. Brace your core and perform a standard push-up. When you reach the top of the push-up, pause for a moment, then pike your hips up while keeping your legs as straight as you can. Pause for a moment at the top, then lower your hips back down to the starting position.


This TRX variation of a body-weight training classic will strengthen your arms, shoulders, back and core. HOW TO DO IT: With the handles of the suspension trainer shortened, sit directly under the anchor point with a handle in each hand and your legs in an L position. Pull your chest to your hands while keeping your legs straight and feet planted on the ground. Lower yourself to the ground in one slow and controlled movement and reset when you hit the ground.


A great exercise for developing functional core strength, this exercise challenges the entire upper body as well. HOW TO DO IT: Stand with the anchor point to one side. Place one foot in front of the other, holding one handle with both hands at the center of your chest. Engage your core muscles and lean slightly away from the anchor point. While keeping your hips, knees, shoulders and ears in line, lean further to the side so that your hands are moving away from your chest. Slowly pull yourself back up -- keeping your body in a straight line -- and bring your hands back to your chest.


The power pull is excellent total-body exercise that develops rotational strength. HOW TO DO IT: Stand facing the anchor point, holding one handle of the suspension trainer with one hand at the side of your chest and the other reaching up toward the anchor point. Slowly lower your body away from the anchor point, letting yourself rotate away, until your free hand is reaching toward the ground. Brace your core and focus on maintaining a rigid plank position. Pull yourself back to the starting position in one controlled movement until your free hand is again touching the suspension trainer.

Effective TRX Excercises

Simple TRX Moves to Challenge Your Whole Body READ

It's time to ditch the dumbbells, kick the kettlebells, and forget about those weight-training machines. OK, maybe not permanently, but at least long enough to add something new to your fitness routine: TRX training techniques.

Invented by a former U.S. Navy SEAL, the TRX (short for total-body resistance exercise) turns every exercise into a challenge for the core by using two very accessible resources: gravity and our own bodyweight. All you have to do is anchor the TRX straps to a secure spot (think a weight machine, a door frame, or even monkey bars or a basketball hoop pole if you’re getting creative) and use either your feet or hands—depending on the exercise—to hold onto the straps.

In general, a part of your body will be suspended above the ground or you’ll be leaning into or away from the straps to create resistance and destabilization. Knocking our balance out of whack gives us no other option but to adjust, which means engaging the midsection and back and firing up the shoulders and hips to maintain control throughout the movement. Even better? Since the straps roll up into practically nothing, it’s a take-anywhere, do-anywhere kind of workout—provided you have somewhere stable to serve as your base.

Ready to hang tough—and build SEAL-worthy strength? Give these 45 TRX moves a try!
Upper Body

1. TRX Push-Up

Targets: Shoulders, chest, arms

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Here’s how you pump up the plain ol’ push-up. To start, hook toes through the TRX straps so that the tops of your feet face the floor. Lift your body up so that weight rests on the palms of your hands. Keeping core tight, bend elbows to lower your chest between hands. You’ll feel your chest and shoulders working as you press back up to the start position.

2. TRX Chest Press

Targets: Arms, chest

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Forget lying down to perform the typical chest press. Face away from the anchor with your feet shoulder-width apart. Grab the handles with an overhand grip and extend arms in front of you at shoulder height. Lean forward so that your body is at a slight diagonal. Bend elbows and lower chest between your hands. You’ll engage your chest and arms as you push yourself back up to the start position. 

3. TRX Inverted Row

Targets: Biceps, lats

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Row, row, row your… way to a fitter physique. Lie directly underneath the TRX. Bend knees and plant your feet on the floor. Reach up to grasp the handles, palms facing each other, arms fully extended, as you lift your body a few inches off the floor. Keeping them close to your sides, bend your elbows to pull torso up towards the handles until your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees. Lower down to the starting position. You’ll put your biceps and back to work as you raise and lower your torso, slowly and with control. You can also perform this exercise with straight legs, heels grounded to the floor, and your body at a diagonal. 

4. Kneeling Triceps Press

Targets: Triceps

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Target those tris with this no-frills move. Kneel down facing the anchor and grab the straps with an underhand grip. Stretch arms straight out in front of you and hold them shoulder-width apart. Bend elbows to lower your upper body toward the floor until hands are in line with your ears—this is when you’ll start to feel those triceps burn. Return to start.

5. Low Row

Targets: Back, abs, shoulders, biceps

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: This move is the key to a strong back. Grab the handles with your palms facing one another. Lean all the way back until weight is on your heels, arms extended out in front of you, and body forms a diagonal. Squeeze shoulder blades together and keep your core tight as you bend your elbows and pull torso up to meet your hands. Lower to return to start.

6. Single-Arm Row

Targets: Back, abs, shoulders, biceps

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: If you’re a pro at the regular low row (see No. 5), challenge yourself to the exact same movement. Except this time around, limit rowing to one arm at a time without losing your form—and get ready to feel the burn.

7. Three-Way Row

Targets: Back, abs, shoulders, biceps

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: If anyone knows a thing or two about sculpting rock-solid shoulders, it’s superstar swimmer Natalie Coughlin. And as it turns out, she’s a fan of TRX—she even shared some of her go-to moves, including this three-in-one exercise. This move includes three different grips to keep your mind and body guessing. Your plan of action: Row with your palms up for a few reps (Natalie suggests three reps per grip), switch to rowing with palms facing one another for a few reps, and then turn palms down for a few reps.

8. Alligator

Targets: Shoulders, back, obliques

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Another of Coughlin’s favorite TRX moves, this shoulder strengthener is also known as a reverse fly (though “alligator” is way more catchy, if you ask us). Start facing the anchor and grab the handles with an overhand grip. Lean back until your body forms a diagonal line and the TRX straps are taut. Pull body up as you pull back and up with your right arm and back and down with left arm. Rotate torso to the right as you do so—you’ll put your shoulders and back to work as your obliques help stabilize your movements. Return to start and repeat on the other side. 

9. Triceps Extension

Targets: Triceps

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Work those tris with this simple but challenging move! Set yourself up like you did for the push-up—facing away from the anchor point, feet shoulder-width apart. Grab the handles with an overhand grip. Shift weight to the balls of your feet as you extend arms out in front of you at eye level. Bend elbows until hands are behind your head, elbows framing either side of your face. Return to start. The movement is small, but super effective, and you’ll fire up your triceps with every rep.

10. Atomic Push-Up

Targets: Chest, shoulders, arms, and abs

Level: Advanced

How to: You might look a bit like a frog in motion, but you’ll definitely feel the burn in your upper body and core as you bring your knees to meet your elbows. Slip your feet into the cradles so that the tops of feet face the floor. Lower body down into a push-up. As you press your body back up into plank position, bring knees in toward elbows, allowing legs to draw apart. Hold for a few seconds and then return to start. 

11. Chest Fly

Targets: Chest, arms

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: If there’s any exercise that will make you feel like you have wings, this is it. Face away from the anchor with feet shoulder-width apart. Grab the handles with an overhand grip and extend arms in front of you at shoulder height. Lean forward so that your body’s at a diagonal. With control, spread arms out to a “T” (but keep elbows bent) as you lower your chest closer to the ground—this is where you seriously activate those chest muscles. Reverse the movement to return to start.

12. Biceps Curl

Targets: Abs and arms

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Face toward the TRX anchor point and grab one handle in each hand, palms facing. Lean all the way back until your arms are extended and the strap is taut. To activate your biceps, bend elbows (without letting them drop) until hands frame your temples, slowly pulling body up as you do so. Return to start—and then ask for two tickets to the gun show, please. 

13. Push-Up with Pike

Targets: Chest, shoulders, arms, abs

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: The push-up and the pike. Completely stellar on their own, these two movements are always better when they’re together (we paraphrase Jack Johnson, of course). Get into your suspended plank position, perform a pushup, and then lift hips up into a pike—your body should look a bit like an upside-down “V." Your abs will work overtime to bring you up and out of this motion. Be sure to keep legs straight and feet together throughout the movement. 

14. Y Fly

Targets: Abs, biceps, back

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: The real question is: Why not fly? Stand facing the anchor with feet hip-width apart. Grasp the TRX and extend arms overhead into a Y, palms facing. Lean back on your heels until body forms a diagonal line, pulling your arms in and out in front of you until your palms nearly touch. Leading with hips, pull your body back up to stand, spreading arms back into a Y as you do. You’ll feel your back muscles working as you move from the “down” position to the “Y” position, and your abs will help you maintain stability throughout the movement.

15. Clock Press

Targets: Abs, shoulders, back, biceps

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: Tick, tock, tick, tock: the countdown is on for a super fit upper body, and this move gets you one step closer. Grab the handles with an overhand grip and lean forward until your body forms a diagonal line, weight on toes. Brace your core and bend elbows, keeping them close to your body—you’ll remain in this “down” position throughout the exercise. Keeping your left arm bent, extend right arm to the side until right elbow and wrist are almost in line with shoulder—this is when your shoulders, back, and biceps will start to burn. Reverse the movement to return to start and repeat with left arm. Continue alternating. 

16. Power Pull

Targets: Upper back, abs, shoulders, obliques 

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Power pulls make for powerful bodies, especially since this move includes a rotation to fire up your abs and obliques in addition to your upper body. Stand facing the anchor with a wide stance. Grasp the TRX with your left hand and hold it at chest height, left elbow high and pointing behind body. Extend right arm so that it’s in line with the TRX. As you lean back, extend your left arm and rotate torso to the right to reach your right arm out and slightly behind you. Reverse the movement to return to start.

17. Standing Fallout

Targets: Chest, abs, shoulders

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Get ready to set those abs on fire. Get yourself in the starting position for a TRX chest press (see No. 2). Then, as you fall forward, reach arms up until they’re in line with the rest of your body—this is where your abs and shoulders really come in handy. Reverse the movement to return to start. 

18. T Deltoid Fly

Targets: Back, shoulders

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: This moves suits our fitness needs to a "T," with a flying motion that strengthens the upper back and sculpts shoulders to perfection. Face the anchor, stagger your stance (right foot should be a few inches in front of left), and grasp one strap in each hand. Lean back so that weight is on your left foot and the TRX straps are taut, arms extended in front of chest. Pull against the TRX, shifting weight to your right foot as you open your arms into a “T” position. Return to start. 

19. Side-Straddle Golf Swings

Targets: Back, chest, shoulders

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: While you won’t exactly feel like you’re golfing when performing this move, this exercise involves a swinging movement that challenges your upper body in a new way. Facing the anchor point, assume a wide-leg stance and grab one TRX handle with each hand with an overhand grip. Keeping weight on your heels, bend forward at hips and reach arms forward at chest height. Look forward throughout the move. Rotate your torso, extending right arm behind you while you extend the left arm in front of you. Reverse the movement to repeat on the other side. 

Lower Body

20. Lunge

Targets: Legs and abs

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: If regular lunges have become a piece of cake, up the ante with this move. Not only does it work your lower body like a traditional lunge, but it’ll also lead to better balance and stability. Facing away from the anchor point, place your left foot in both TRX straps, and plant your right foot firmly on the ground. Lower down into a lunge, extending the left leg behind you, without losing the bend in your knee. Return to starting position and repeat on the other leg. You’ll feel your lower body and abs working hard throughout this movement—both to actually complete the movement and to stabilize your body.

21. Squat

Targets: Abs, quads, glutes, hamstrings

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Regular squats are essential to build a strong lower body. Add a TRX to the mix to help improve your form, or even give you some stability and support (if you need it). Start off by holding both handles in front of your waist, elbows bent by sides. Lower down into a squat, extending arms in front of you at eye level. Push yourself back up to start.

22. Hamstring Pull-In/Hamstring Curl

Targets: Thighs, glutes, hips

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Get your hammies in on the action! Lie faceup with arms extended by sides. Place heels in the cradles and press down to secure them. Keeping your core tight, lift hips off the floor. Pull your heels in toward hips in a smooth and controlled motion (there’s no swinging here!). Straighten legs back to the starting position. 

23. Single-Leg Hamstring Pull-In/Hamstring Curl

Targets: Thighs, glutes, hips

Difficulty: Intermediate-advanced

How to: Isolate the strength-training movement to one leg at a time, and boom—you’ve got a pretty killer variation on the regular hamstring exercise. Start off as you would to perform the hamstring pull-in (see No. 22), but instead of pulling both heels toward your hips at the same time, alternate legs. Isolating legs will make this move even more challenging. 

24. Curtsy Lunge/Crossing Balance Lunge

Targets: Quads, glutes, calves

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: It might have a pretty name, but this move is one tough leg exercise. Face the anchor and grab the TRX handles, keeping elbows bent by your sides. Raise your right knee until thigh is parallel to the floor. Squat low, simultaneously swinging your right leg behind and across your body until you can place your right toes on the ground to the left of left foot. Return to start. You’ll fire up your entire lower body as you move through this movement. 

25. Lateral Lunge

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, quads, adductors

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Don’t limit your lunges to the typical backward and forward variety. The side movement engages your hip adductors, which help your glutes and quads move properly. Stand facing the anchor, feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a TRX handle in each hand in front of your waist, elbows bent by your sides. Plant right leg firmly in the ground and take a big step to the side with left leg, bending left knee as you lower your body into a side lunge. Push back to start and repeat on the other leg. 

26. Curtsy Lunge to Lateral Lunge

Targets: Quads, glutes, calves, hamstrings, adductors

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: Challenging on their own, these two moves make an even more powerful pair. Perform the curtsy lunge (No. 24) immediately followed by the lateral lunge (No. 25). Now’s the time to multitask your way to fitness!

27. Single-Leg PliƩ

Targets: Quads, glutes, calves

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: This move’s a whole lot like the curtsy lunge, but with an added bonus: A knee-up movement that really makes you feel the burn throughout your legs. Start by facing the anchor. Hold the TRX out in front of you, palms facing. Bend your elbows and position them by your sides. Bring right knee up in front of you, until upper leg is at a 90-degree angle. Lower down into a squat, bringingright leg back behind left, without letting right leg touch the ground. Reverse the movement and return to the knee-up position.
Total Body

28. Reverse Mountain Climber

Targets: Triceps, abs, hip flexors, quads, hamstrings

Level: Intermediate

How to: Thought regular mountain climbers were tough? Try flipping your body and use your arms to hold yourself up from behind, engaging your entire body as you push through the movement. Sit underneath the TRX and hook your heels into the foot cradles. Place palms on the floor behind you with your fingers pointed toward your feet. Lift your body off the ground, keeping a slight bend in elbows. Bring right knee into your chest, extend back to start, and immediately repeat with the left knee. Alternate as quickly as you can without losing form. 

29. Suspended Plank with Abduction

Targets: Abs, hips, shoulders, obliques 

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Give a regular suspended plank a little extra push by getting your legs and hips in on the action. Get into regular suspended plank position. Keep core tight and separate your legs as wide as you can without losing your form—this is when you’re putting your hips to work. Pause for a few seconds and return to start. 

30. Squat and Fly

Targets: Quads, glutes, calves, hamstrings, hip flexors, abs, shoulders, delts

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: A truly excellent total-body move, this exercise will work you from your head to your toes. Stand with legs shoulder-width apart and grasp the handles in front of you. Lower yourself into a squat as you extend arms up in front of you. Explode up to stand, spreading arms open to form an overhead “V." 

31. Knee Drive/Sprinter Start

Targets: Quads, calves, glutes, outer thighs, hamstrings, lower back, and abs

Difficulty: Intermediate-advanced

How to: For sprinter-worthy legs (ever notice how muscular their quads are?), add this move to your routine. You’ll fire up your entire lower body and use your core strength to stabilize yourself throughout the movement. To start, face the TRX anchor and grasp the handles in front of your chest. Lean forward, shifting weight to the balls of your feet until the straps become taut. Bend your left knee in front of you. Keep core engaged and drive right knee forward until your right thigh is parallel to the floor beneath you. Pause at the top, and then return to start.

32. Glute Bridge

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, back 

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: If regular glute bridges are the key to a superior posterior, then just imagine what added instability can do for the rear view. Hint: It’ll make your hamstrings and glutes work even harder, and also pulls your back muscles into the equation. To start, lie on your back and hook ankles in the cradles. Bring heels close to your hips until your legs form a 90-degree angle. Extend arms out beside you and lift your hips up until upper body’s at a diagonal. Lower back down to start.

33. Mountain Climber

Targets: Abs, glutes, quads, hamstrings, shoulders, chest, and upper back

Difficulty: Intermediate 

How to: Walking—even running—on air isn’t just for science fiction anymore. Flying through this move will get your heart rate soaring, torch some serious calories, and set your muscles on fire. Slip your feet into the cradles and settle into your trusty plank position. Just as you would with your feet on the floor, alternate between bringing each knee to your chest, speeding up without losing control over your movements—a much bigger challenge when your feet are dangling in the air!

34. Single-Leg Burpee

Targets: Shoulders, chest, arms, abs, butt, legs

Level: Advanced

How to: Ah, burpees. The exercise everyone loves to hate, now made even more challenging for some serious strong-body benefits. To start, adjust the TRX strap so that it hangs at mid-calf. Place your right foot in the loop behind you. Lower your body down into plank position, but keep your free left foot suspended in the air next to right foot. Lower into a push-up and, as you raise your torso back up, pull left foot to your chest as you return to stand.

35. Single-Leg Squat

Targets: Abs, butt, legs, and arms

Difficulty: Intermediate-advanced

How to: Since traditional single-leg squats can be struggle-city for a lot of us, we’re pretty thrilled that this move provides as much (or as little) assistance in the stabilizing department as we might need. Start by holding both handles in front of your waist, elbows bent by your sides. Lift left leg out in front of you so that it’s parallel to the floor. Lower down into a squat on your right leg, extending arms in front of you at eye level. Push yourself back up to start. You’ll feel your lower body working as you lower down and push yourself back up.

36. Spiderman Push-Up

Targets: Chest, triceps, obliques, quads, lower back, shoulders, and core (plus, it opens up the hips)

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: Regular spiderman push-ups aren’t for the faint of heart. Add in a destabilizing element—that’d be having our feet suspended in the air behind us—and we’ve got one amazing shape-up move on our hands. With one foot in each loop, start off in plank pose. Lower your body down into a pushup, bringing the right knee to the right elbow—this is when you’re firing up your obliques. Return to start and repeat with the left leg.

37. Squat and Row

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, quads, upper back

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Another two-in-one stunner, this move combines an excellent lower body move with a super effective upper body exercise. Start off by holding both handles in front of your waist, elbows bent by your sides. Lean back, extending arms in front of you at eye level. Lower your body down into a squat, using the TRX straps to help you keep your balance. Push back up to start, and then pull body up and towards the anchor as you bend your elbows and bring chest closer to palms. Return to start. 

38. Burpee to Scorpion

Targets: Shoulders, chest, arms, abs, butt, legs, obliques

Difficulty: Advanced

How to: In case you’ve mastered the single-leg burpee (or you’re just up for a new challenge), try this body-rocking move. The “scorpion” part of this movement targets your obliques, working to whittle your middle and build a super strong core. With one foot hooked into the straps behind you, perform a single-leg burpee as usual. After the push-up portion, remain in plank position and bring your free leg under and across your body, then swing it back around to move it over and above your body. Return to standing.

39. Suspended Plank

Targets: Abs, obliques, shoulders

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: For a basic but challenging way to work the TRX into your routine, pump up your planks with a little (more) instability. Face away from the anchor and slip your toes into the stirrups so that feet face downwards. Just as you would with a regular plank, lift your upper body up onto forearms. Challenge yourself to hold the position as long as you can without compromising your form. 

40. Pendulum Swing

Targets: Abs and obliques

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Who knew swinging around could make you break such a sweat? Face away from the TRX, place your feet in the cradles, and get into plank position. Keeping them together throughout the movement, swing legs over to the left side, bending knees toward your left elbow, engaging obliques. Swing your legs back into plank position and then over to the right elbow in one fluid motion. Return to plank pose. 

41. Torso Rotation

Targets: Abs, obliques

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Spin your torso (right round) for a strong midsection. Face the anchor point and use both hands to grab the TRX straps. Position your legs in a wide stance and lean back until the straps are taut in front of you. As you pull your body up, twist to the right, keeping your arms straight and your core tight. Return to start and repeat on the left side.

42. Side Plank

Targets: Obliques

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: TRX + yoga = a match made in fitness heaven. Lie on your left side and place both feet into the cradles. Stack your elbow under shoulder, and lift yourself up into a side plank. To make it harder, reach your free hand under your torso to the floor behind body. Looking for yet another variation? Try lowering your hip to the floor and raising it back up into the side plank. Hold for a few seconds at the top, and then repeat. 

43. Atomic Pike/Suspended Pike

Targets: Shoulders and abs

Difficulty: Intermediate

How to: Assume the position! Plank position, that is. Hook your feet in each of the cradles and lift body up into plank pose. Keeping legs and arms straight and core tight, lift your hips up into an inverted “V.” Lower to start. You’ll feel your abs working and your shoulders struggling to hold you up as you lower and lift your hips.

44. Crunch and Curl

Targets: Biceps, abs

Difficulty: Beginner

How to: Why not turn a crunch into a biceps exercise? With the TRX, you totally can! Sit down facing the anchor. Grab the handles with an underhand grip, then lie down with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, arms extended up in the air front of you. Keep your core tight and lift your shoulders and back off the floor, simultaneously curling your hands toward your shoulders. Lower down to start.

Photos of trainer Jessi Kneeland were taken at Peak Performance NYC.