5 Must-Haves for an in-home gym
Whether you’re new, or a long time member of “team fitness”, you may not want to need to go to the gym (for various reasons) so here are a few must-have multi-use items that are beneficial for every fitness level & for all fitness goals.
- Skipping Rope – if you’re “not a runner”, and don’t feel like leaving home, a skipping rope is a perfect piece of equipment to perform intervals or steady cardio. By adjusting speed; choosing unilateral or bilateral jumps (1-foot/2-foot); or doing double (or triple!!) unders, you can change the degree of difficulty, and can maximize your efforts. Already have a rope? TRY THIS
- Kettlebell(s) – with their offset handle, which allow you to manipulate the kettlebell much differently than you could with a dumbbell, or any other training device; the shape and the handle allow you to perform ballistics (fast, explosive momentum-based movements) and “grinds” or slower (tempo-based deliberate, or stationary) movements. You can LITERALLY work every muscle group with these awesome tools. Curious as to how? TRY THIS
- TRX – Originally developed by a Navy SEAL the TRX (“Total-body Resistance Exercise”) system was created to work Every part of your body out [anywhere that you can hook it up (ceiling hook, high rail, or door anchor)] with the resistance of body weight vs. gravity. Want some ideas? TRY THIS
- Equalizers – Whether you are looking to lose weight or gain strength, adding these versatile bars to your mini-gym & workout plan are a good call! They can be used as a dip (tricep) & abs station (elevated/hanging leg raises); they can ramp up your plyo/floor work by adding an obstacle; and most importantly, if you don’t have a place to attach a pull-up bar, they allow you to work your back by performing modified pulls. PLUS, they can be used in place of a barre, if you like flexibility or dance-based workouts. For more exercises TRY THIS
- Resistance Bands – if you don’t have space or money for a whole set of dumbbells, you can find varying levels of resistance with different band tensions or combining bands. You can work EVERY muscle group with a single set of bands, and they’re portable and fairly cheap (cost-effective), and found everywhere. Need some ideas TRY THIS
And if you absolutely NEED Dumbbells – look for a “click-adjust” set, like Drake says: you can go “from 0-100, REAL QUICK” or more likely 5-25, or 15-50 (pounds, that is) with some quick clicks and twists of the wrist. Minimize space and doesn’t necessitate buying an entire rack of dumbbells.
Aside from a (yoga) mat, there isn’t much more you would “need” to hit every muscle group and get a KILLER pump!
A few additional options, you may want to check out:
- A medicine ball: a weighted ball (some bounce, some don’t – “dead ball”/”wall ball” style – varying sizes and weights) great for throws/slams; adding weight to squats and lunges; adding levels for floor work.
- Balance ball: excellent for core work and balance; you can elevate your upper body or lower body, adding an element of instability. (*Can also be used to decrease difficulty of squats and lunges, for rehab work)
- BoSU: “both sides up” – one side: the unstable element of a ball, with a flat bottom, so it doesn’t move; the other: a platform, adding instability with the ball-side on the floor. Also great for core work and balance; excellent to add a degree of difficulty to Plyometrics, upper and lower body.