How to get a Satisfying Workout Using Exercise Cards

Example of a Deck of Workout Cards. Workout Labs available on Amazon. Link below.

Example of a Deck of Workout Cards. Workout Labs available on Amazon. Link below.

When you start a workout routine, you may start to look at equipment options. These may change slightly depending on if you want to workout in a gym, outdoors, or in your home. If you are looking for an option that takes up very little space or is easy to take with you when traveling, I recommend using a deck of workout cards. These cards are generally the size of a deck of playing cards and have an exercise on each card. These tell you the reps you need to do and will use your body weight or some type of equipment in the workout. If you are new to workout cards, here are some ways to use them in your workout routine.

You Get Personalized Workouts

One of the largest benefits you can gain when you use workout cards is the personalization they can give you. Most of the workout decks consist of at least 50 plus cards. Sometimes the exercises focus on specific body areas while other times they may range over a full body workout with intensity levels. This means you can take a full deck and build a deck that works for you and is personalized to your goals and your skill level. You can also change this at any time which gives you even more personalization. Read further for a way to use a deck of playing cards to build a workout!

Workout Cards Take the Guess work out of Equipment Needs

One of the reasons that people tend to turn down certain workout plans is a lack of equipment or space. The equipment may require anything from a spinning bike to a treadmill. If you are in a small space, then this can really limit your choices. With workout cards, you don't need major equipment. In fact, most of the decks out there are based on body weight. They give you the full body workout without the full body equipment. If you do have space for a stability ball, kettlebells, dumbbells or resistance bands a deck can help you plan a satisfying exercise session.

You Choose the Time and Location of your Workout

Getting to the gym when you have a busy schedule already can feel like too much. Using a deck of cards at home, you already have your clothes, shower, music, and equipment ready to use. If you are traveling, you can also do most of the workouts in any location. This makes them ideal to do at home, outdoors, in a park, or wherever you find yourself with the time and space. This also opens you up to more workout options that you may not have expected. Get a few friends involved and make it a fun workout party!

Innovate your Workout: Grab your playing cards

Want to go super low tech? Use a deck of playing cards. Assign an exercise to each suit.

For example:

  • Squats = Diamonds

  • Push-ups = Hearts

  • Jumping Jacks = Spades

  • Sit-ups = Clubs


Draw a card for your repetitions. Let the cards fall where they may (sorry, I couldn’t resist)

  • Ace = 1 rep, 10 or 14 reps, player's choice

  • 2 = 2 reps

  • 3 = 3 reps

  • 4 = 4 reps

  • 5 = 5 reps

  • 6 = 6 reps

  • 7 = 7 reps

  • 8 = 8 reps

  • 9 = 9 reps

  • 10 = 10 reps

  • Jack = 10 or 11 reps, player's choice

  • Queen = 10 or 12 reps, player's choice

  • King = 10 or 13 reps, player's choice

Have fun!

Keep in mind there are several decks available that can help your workout. Some of them are complete beginner decks with body resistance workouts. Other decks use kettlebells, jump ropes, agility ladders, and other equipment. Try a few of them and use them in your routine to figure out which ones work best for you.

Workout Decks I Recommend

  1. FREE and High Quality! These have good illustrations that help me understand the exercise. As a visual learner this is a key thing for me. Plus they seem to be a geek, which is a bonus. :D

    2. If you want to peruse Amazon The Workout Lab Deck seems to be pretty good. You can purchase a male or female deck.

    Tip: If you buy a really cheap deck, you may get a deck in really bad english. Ask me how I know this. lol

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