Wellness Partners

Eight Beginner Workout Routines for Women That Inspire Confidence

Mar 17, 2023
Last Updated May 8, 2024

Whether you’re training for your first half marathon, trying out a new sport with some friends, or looking to build muscle, the most important step in your journey is your first. No matter where you want to end up, you can’t get there without that very first run, lap, or rep in the weight room.

The best way to achieve any long-term fitness goals is to build your way up with a solid, healthy plan. A beginner workout plan is the perfect solution for when you’re just starting out whether or not you eventually plan on ramping your way up to more strenuous exercise.

They can also help build more confidence alongside that physical fitness, for women especially. One study found that about 32% of women have avoided joining a gym because they feel intimidated, and that 25% of women in the same felt too unfit to consider a membership. 

Offering beginner workout plans for women at your gym or fitness center can help new members feel more welcome. Here are some exercises you can introduce to your own members create a supportive, fun environment for everyone.

  1. Pilates

This is an ideal beginner workout, as it focuses on strengthening the core muscles through a range of low-impact, bodyweight exercises appropriate for all fitness levels. It helps to improve posture and balance, while enhancing coordination and flexibility. Some beginner Pilates routines to try out include the roll-up for articulating the spine, the teaser for abs and hip flexors, and the saw for improving oblique control.

  1. Bodyweight Circuit

A bodyweight circuit or full body workout can be as simple or complex as you make it. You can have your members move through a series of whole body exercises, such as squats, lunges, push-ups, and planks, with minimal rest in between. This type of workout helps improve both strength and endurance. Circuits aren’t very long workouts and they can be done a couple of times a week, so they’re perfect for women who are easing into a training program.

According to Women’s Health Magazine, Reese Witherspoon’s personal trainer recommends a quick 20-minute bodyweight workout that your own clients can try. The circuit consists of jump squats, bird dogs, push-ups, leg lifts, and more, with multiple sets and reps of each move. She recommends 10 or 12 reps of the glute bridges with leg lifts to get the most out of the workout.

  1. Yoga

Yoga offers a great way to relax, improve flexibility, and build strength. It also teaches mindfulness and breathing techniques that can reduce stress levels. From beginner-friendly hatha yoga to more advanced hot yoga classes, there’s something for everyone when it comes to yoga workouts — and there’s a pathway to gain confidence and work up to more demanding exercises.

  1. Running

If you’re looking for a cardio workout with great health benefits, look no further than running. Not only does it help get your heart rate up and burn calories, but it can also improve mental clarity and boost mood. And best of all — you can do it anywhere with minimal equipment.

For women who are looking for beginner workout plans to help with their running goals, there are all kinds of ways to get started. Runner’s World recommends beginners start by just walking for 30 minutes. But if they’re looking to ramp up to run their first 5K, for example, they can split their 30-minute session between running and walking.

  1. Swimming

Regular swimming can help tone your muscles, improve coordination, and reduce stress levels. It’s also low-impact, so it’s easy on the joints — making it a great option for women of all ages. Swimming also offers an abundance of styles and strokes, all of which work different muscle groups. Instead of just swimming back and forth across a pool, your members can actually try different techniques for muscle building.

Beauty publication Byrdie offers trainer-approved suggestions for beginner swimmer workout plans, including a beginner interval training plan. The plan includes warming up with your stroke of choice, swimming freestyle, swimming with a kickboard, and swimming as fast as you can for 100 yards.

  1. High Intensity Interval Training

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one of the most popular types of workout, as it can be done in short bursts and provides a great calorie burn. It involves alternating between periods of intense activity and rest, and can involve any type of movement from running to jumping jacks. HIIT workouts are great for boosting your fitness level in a relatively short amount of time.

  1. Strength Training

Strength training is a key part of any workout routine, as it helps to increase muscle mass and improve overall body composition. Strength training workouts can involve weight lifting or resistance bands for different types of exercises such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts. Regular strength training can help your members get stronger, leaner, and more confident as they go about their exercises.

  1. Low Impact Aerobic Exercise

Low impact aerobic exercises are perfect for women looking to ease into their fitness journey, as they are gentle on the body and joints. Some examples of low impact aerobic exercises include walking, swimming, light jogging, or dancing. These types of exercises can be done for longer periods of time, which makes them a great option for those just starting out their fitness journey.

If you offer any aerobics classes at your fitness center, it can also be a great way to guide new members along, help them achieve good form, and give them pointers for new exercises they might like to try.

Beginner Workout Routine Example for Women to Follow

An example of a beginner gym workout for women could include exercises that focus on strengthening the core, building strength and endurance, and improving flexibility. Here’s how you could structure a routine for your members or clients

  • 10 minutes of light stretching and warmup exercises, such as arm swings, leg swings, torso twists, neck rolls, shoulder circles and ankle circles.
  • Move onto the main workout, which could include 15 minutes of bodyweight exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, and planks.
  • Cool down with 5 minutes of low impact aerobic exercise such as jogging or walking.
  • Finish off with 10 minutes of yoga poses to increase flexibility and relaxation.
  • End the session with 5 minutes of light stretching and joint mobility exercises.

Tailor Your Workout Plans to Match Fitness Goals

When it comes to designing beginner workout plans for women, it’s important to remember that everyone is different and has their own individual fitness needs. Someone who is focused on weight loss will have different workout needs than a person who’s training for their first 5K. Tailored plans or even beginners workout challenges can help women achieve their goals faster and help them feel more supported by your trainers and facility.

In the corporate world, employees too have their own unique wellbeing needs, whether it’s improved mental health support or better access to physical fitness activities. They’re constantly on the lookout for companies that will support their health journey with a great benefits package and a wellness program that provides access to gyms just like yours.

Wellhub makes it simple for you to become a part of corporate benefit packages, expanding your audience of potential members. Learn more about what a Wellhub partnership looks like today!




Wellhub Editorial Team

The Wellhub Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.


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