This is long overdue, and for that I apologize, but here’s the Ultimate Exercise Substitutions List.

Feel free to add your suggestions or follow up questions below, and we’ll keep building this out as a  great resource.

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Exercise Substitutions

For Squats –> You can do split squats, lunges, step-ups, reaching lunges, 1-leg deadlifts, or 1-leg hip extensions

For DB Incline Press –> You can do DB Chest Press, DB Floor Press, DB Standing 1-Arm Shoulder Press, Dips with Knee-ups

For DB Chest Supported Row -> You can do DB Row, BB Row, Seated Row, DB Renegade Rows, DB Rear Deltoid Raise

For Dips with Knees-up –> Any version of close-grip pushup, DB Floor Press, DB Close-grip Press, DB Close-grip Floor press

For DB Chest Presses (of any kind) -> You can do one of these:

– pushups
– close-grip pushups
– decline pushup
– elevated pushups
– off-set pushups
– pushups with your feet on the ball
– pushups with your hands on the ball
– spiderman pushups
– pike pushups
– or possibly the hardest two hand pushup of them all, decline close-grip spiderman pushups

For DB Split Squats -> You can do:

– 1-leg lying hip extensions for beginners
– high-rep Bulgarian split squats for advanced
– high-rep split squats with your front foot elevated 4-6 inches for intermediate
– 1-leg deadlifts
– 1-leg squats onto bench
– 1-leg squats standing on the bench
– deepstep-ups
– reaching lunges

For DB Rows -> Using the smith machine, you can do…
– inverted rows
– underhand inverted rows
– inverted rows with your feet on the ball
– inverted rows holding the ends of a towel hung over the bar (advanced grip strength there!)

For DB Rows -> Using the pullup bar, you can do…
– eccentric pull-ups
– regular pull-ups
– sternum pull-ups
– chinups
– side to side pull-ups

Not strong enough for Stability Ball Leg Curls -> You can do:
– Lying hip extensions and 1-leg hip extensions
– Then progress into hip extensions with feet on the ball.

If you have pain during squats & Lunges -> You can do:
– lying 1-leg hip extensions

For Step-Ups -> You can do:
– 1-leg hip extensions

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Have other ideas or questions?

Please comment below.

To your success,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS
Author, Turbulence Training

Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne is the author of The Perfect Day Formula: How to Own the Day and Control Your Life. Craig has been a contributor to Men's Health magazine for over 17 years. Today he teaches his gift to high-performing entrepreneurs how to squeeze more out of their days, increase their income, and make more quality time for their families in his Perfect Life Workshop and Work-Life Mastery programs. Craig used his own advice to overcome crippling anxiety attacks in 2006, and he'll teach you his 5 Pillars of Success so you can increase your income, decrease your work time, and live the life of your dreams. Learn more about Craig at craigballantyne.com

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