Bodyweight exercises are a great way to stay fit and healthy without the need for any equipment. These exercises use your own body weight as resistance, making them a perfect choice for people who don’t have access to a gym or expensive workout equipment. One of the most popular methods of bodyweight training is the 4 4 12 rule. This rule has been gaining popularity in recent years and is often recommended by fitness experts for those who want to build muscle and strength.


What is the 4 4 12 Rule?

The 4 4 12 rule is a method of performing bodyweight exercises that consists of performing four sets of four different exercises, with 12 repetitions of each exercise in each set. This means that you will be doing a total of 48 repetitions of each exercise.

Let’s break it down further. You will choose four exercises, such as squats, push-ups, lunges, and planks. You will perform 12 reps of squats, followed by 12 reps of push-ups, 12 reps of lunges, and 12 reps of planks. After completing one set of all four exercises, you will rest for a minute or two before starting the next set. Repeat this pattern for a total of four sets.

Why is the 4 4 12 Rule Effective?

The 4 4 12 rule is effective for several reasons. Firstly, it ensures that you are performing enough repetitions of each exercise to stimulate muscle growth and strength gains. Secondly, by performing four different exercises, you are targeting multiple muscle groups, which helps to create a well-rounded workout. Thirdly, by taking a minute or two of rest between each set, you are allowing your muscles time to recover, which is important for muscle growth and injury prevention.

Example Exercises for the 4 4 12 Rule

Below are some examples of exercises that you can use for the 4 4 12 rule:

Exercise Target Muscle Group
Squats Quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes
Push-ups Chest, triceps, shoulders
Lunges Quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes
Plank Core

How to Progress with the 4 4 12 Rule

Once you have mastered the 4 4 12 rule, you can progress by increasing the number of repetitions or sets. For example, you can increase the number of repetitions to 15 or 20, or you can add an extra set, making it a 5 5 15 rule. Another way to progress is to make the exercises more challenging. For example, you can do weighted squats, push-ups with your feet elevated, or walking lunges.

Benefits of Bodyweight Exercises

Bodyweight exercises have several benefits:

  • They can be done anywhere, anytime.
  • They don’t require any equipment.
  • They are great for beginners and experienced athletes alike.
  • They can be modified to suit any fitness level.
  • They help to build strength, endurance, and flexibility.


The 4 4 12 rule is a great way to incorporate bodyweight exercises into your workout routine. By performing four sets of four exercises, you can target multiple muscle groups and stimulate muscle growth and strength gains. By progressing with the number of repetitions or sets, you can continue to challenge yourself and see results. So, next time you are looking for a quick and effective workout, give the 4 4 12 rule a try!