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Health & Wellness

Quick workout tips for busy youths

While you are chasing your dreams and climbing the career ladder or rushing to complete assignments, you should remember that it is important to schedule quick workout sessions to keep your body and mind functioning well.

Research has shown that not only does exercise help you live longer, it can also lead to better mental health.

Finding it tough to squeeze a fitness regime into your busy schedule? Here are quick workouts that take less than 15 minutes each day. Fit them into your lunch-hour or the moment you wake up, or after work, and you won’t have to make sacrifices to keep yourself healthy!

1. Speedy sets in the morning

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These workouts are great if the window of time between waking up and dashing to school or work is all you have. They make up a 10-minute routine that wakes and preps your body for the day ahead. All the tools you would need are likely already available in your bedroom.


To make the most of your planks, keep to the position for at least one to two minutes per set, and increase the duration with each session. You should make it a point to master this core-strengthening exercise, as it can help improve your overall muscle performance.

Decline push-ups

Use your bed as a tool to engage you into position. Then, keep your hips firmly lifted to avoid strains whilst in action. This move helps release the tension you store in your shoulders and arms.


Yoga asanas such as the downward dog and the warrior pose can release the tightness and knots in the subtler corners and folds of your body. You should commit to these moves regularly each morning for at least three minutes per pose to help your body build strength over time.

2. Easy stretches at your desk

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These workouts can improve your blood circulation after sitting for a long time. You can easily do them in between tasks, or during lunch (if you’re shy about people looking).

Chest openers

This move is an excellent wake-up call if you’re continually feeling sluggish at work. It stretches your entire shoulder area and relieves any tightness in your lower neck, arms, and shoulders.

Arm rotations

Want to trim some of that “chicken wing”? Just throw in some arm rotation moves to improve strength and blood circulation in your arms. They can also relieve any muscle aches that come from prolonged hunching.

Hamstring stretches

To ensure your lower body stays strong, you should stretch the back of your legs in between tasks at work. Do as many as you’re able to at a time. The stretches will help release the tension and aches in your hips and legs that have built up from sitting for long hours.

Forward or backward lunges

This is a great way to strengthen your legs, hips, and buttocks. It may take up more space than the hamstring stretches so be sure to step away from your desk if you’re stationed in an open space. Do at least a set of 10 to 15 reps for each leg per day.

3. 15-minute gym visits during lunch

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If your campus or office comes with a gym, you can save your visits for days with longer lunch breaks. This is a perfect route for those looking to be in leaner shape faster.

Warm-ups and cool-downs

Before you hit the ‘hard’ button, remember to warm up your body! Proper warm-ups can go a long way in preventing unwanted muscle injuries. And don’t forget to also cool down your body after your workout, to minimise body aches and shock.

HIIT workouts

A high-intensity interval training workout of any kind is great if you only have less than 20 minutes at hand. The trick is to ensure that you commit to intense moves. Think inchworm sets, jack-knife sit-ups, or mountain climbers.

Each move, which should last for 60 seconds per set, is to be followed by 30 seconds of rest before you resume with another set of moves. Push for as many reps as you can per set.

Include light equipment and tools

If you’re driving to work, you can store your mat, weights, resistant bands in your car so you can access them at any time while you are at work.

Don’t have any? Be on the lookout for deals on exercise equipment via your credit rewards and cashback offers. Also, set aside some money for these workout tools (hint: a savings account with zero monthly costs or fall-back fees like Jumpstart can help you save).

4. Break a sweat while watching TV

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If your schedule is too packed for any of the suggestions above, then consider working out while catching up on your favourite Netflix shows at night. All you need is your body weight.

Longer planks

To strengthen your muscles further, make sure to push for longer than a minute per plank. Keep pushing the time limit for each session over time. You can also add other moves into your plant sets to increase their challenge factors, such as planks with shoulder touches or knee planks.

Tricep dips

One of the best things about tricep dips is that you can do them straight on your couch, without peeling your eyes away from the TV. Commit to at least two sets of 15 to 20 reps per session.

Squats and lunges

These moves can shape your buttocks, glutes, and thighs. Add some weights and resistant bands to increase the challenge and expedite your muscle gain.

Make time to get fit

In the beginning, it might be an uphill climb, but if you make these quick workouts a habit, you will soon see positive changes to your body, mind, and mood. Of course, being healthy also means eating well and looking after overall wellbeing. For more tips on how to stay fit on a budget, check this article out!

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This article is brought to you by Standard Chartered Bank (Singapore) Limited. All information provided is for informational purposes only.

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