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Prison Workout Routine

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Prison workouts have gained popularity due to their simplicity and effectiveness. With limited equipment and confined spaces, inmates have developed ingenious workout routines that utilize bodyweight exercises to build strength and maintain physical fitness. In this article, we unveil the secrets of the prison workout plan, providing you with a comprehensive guide to a challenging and effective exercise regimen that can be done anywhere. Get ready to unleash your inner warrior and sculpt a formidable physique, even without access to a traditional gym.

The Mindset

Discipline and Determination Before delving into the exercises, it’s crucial to adopt the right mindset. In prison, fitness becomes a way of life, driven by discipline and determination. Embrace these principles, stay focused, and commit to your workout routine. Remember, consistency is key to achieving results.

Bodyweight Basics

Maximizing Limited Resources One of the greatest strengths of a prison workout plan is its reliance on bodyweight exercises. Mastering these basic movements is essential before progressing to more advanced exercises. Here are some bodyweight exercises that form the foundation of a prison workout:

  • Push-Ups: The classic push-up targets the chest, shoulders, and triceps. Start with variations like standard push-ups, wide-grip push-ups, and decline push-ups to challenge different muscle groups.
  • Squats: Squats work the muscles of the lower body, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes. Perform bodyweight squats, jump squats, or pistol squats to increase intensity.
  • Lunges: Lunges strengthen the legs and improve balance. Begin with forward lunges and progress to reverse lunges or walking lunges.
  • Dips: Find parallel bars, the edge of a sturdy table, or any stable surface to perform dips. This exercise targets the triceps and chest.
  • Plank: The plank is a fantastic core exercise that strengthens the abs, lower back, and stabilizing muscles. Hold the plank position for increasing durations to challenge yourself.

The Circuit Routine

Maximizing Efficiency In a prison workout, time is often limited. Hence, circuit training is a popular choice, as it combines multiple exercises performed consecutively without rest. This approach maximizes efficiency and elevates heart rate, resulting in a cardiovascular and strength-building workout. Here’s a sample circuit routine:

Push-Up Circuit:

  1. Standard Push-Ups: 3 sets of 12-15 repetitions.
  2. Wide-Grip Push-Ups: 3 sets of 12-15 repetitions.
  3. Diamond Push-Ups: 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.

Lower Body Circuit

  1. Bodyweight Squats: 3 sets of 15-20 repetitions.
  2. Jump Squats: 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.
  3. Lunges: 3 sets of 12-15 repetitions on each leg.

Upper Body Circuit

  1. Dips: 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.
  2. Inverted Rows (using a sturdy horizontal bar or table edge): 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.
  3. Plank: Hold for 30-60 seconds, gradually increasing the duration.

Cardiovascular Endurance

The Prison Cardio Routine Maintaining cardiovascular fitness is crucial in a prison workout plan. While running might not always be an option, there are alternative exercises that can elevate your heart rate and boost your endurance:

  1. Jumping Jacks: Perform 3 sets of 30 seconds each.
  2. High Knees: Run in place, lifting your knees as high as possible, for 3 sets of 30 seconds each.
  3. Burpees: Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions, increasing the intensity as you progress.

Adaptability and Progression

In prison, adaptability is key. As you become more proficient in the exercises, increase the difficulty by incorporating variations, increasing repetitions, or reducing rest periods. You can also utilize makeshift weights or resistance bands if available.

The prison workout plan showcases the power of simplicity and resourcefulness. By harnessing the potential of bodyweight exercises and circuit training, you can build strength, improve cardiovascular fitness, and achieve remarkable results, even within the confines of limited resources. Embrace the prison workout mentality of discipline, determination, and adaptability, and let the journey to a stronger and fitter you begin, wherever you are.

If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check out more, like our article on a pushup workout routine.


  • Kris Gethin

    Kris Gethin is a certified personal trainer and nutrition coach with 15 years of experience in the fitness industry. He is a bodybuilding expert and accomplished competitor at the national level. Kris' writing focuses on evidence-based research and practical advice for muscle building, strength training, nutrition, and recovery techniques. His articles have been featured in Men's Health, Muscle & Fitness, and

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