There are several pieces of workout equipment that everyone should keep on hand in their home. These are all pieces that are portable and can be taken with you quite easily when traveling. No matter what your fitness level is and no matter the degree of your fitness commitment, everyone needs to have a few minimal items in order to maintain an active lifestyle and work toward optimal health. There is no need to break the bank purchasing expensive home gym equipment or spending your hard-earned money on monthly gym fees.
My first choice in the home gym arsenal is the exercise ball. You might have thought that free weights would have been my first recommendation but you can do so much more on an exercise ball with just your own body weight. It’s excellent when you’re first getting started and it’s fun to use which is why I feel it nicely falls into my first choice for home gym equipment. Exercise balls can also help to improve your exercises from a beginner level to an advanced level of training. For example, you can use an exercise ball to help you learn how to do pushups by lying over the ball and keeping it at your midriff which makes the pushups much easier. As you perform this exercise over a few weeks it will become easier and then you can slowly advance the ball slowly toward your feet until you end up doing pushups with your feet completely on the ball which is an advanced exercise that’s excellent for your upper body.
Exercise balls can also help you accomplish a proper squat movement which makes it easier for you to lower your body down while keeping your knees from falling inwards. You can keep your feet slightly forward to ensure your knees are always over your ankles and not creeping past your toes. Combined with resistance pieces such as bands, dumbbells, or medicine balls, you can really push your training to the next level and all of this can be performed in the convenience of your home. On a warm day you can even take your exercise ball to the beach or to your local park. Traveling with this equipment is very easy and you can take it to your local high school track or outdoor area which will allow for the option to include cardio intervals into your routine which will really maximize your workout session!
Exercise bands fall into second place. They are lighter to travel with than carrying around heavy dumbbells yet still add excellent resistance to your workout. They also offer much more variety than using dumbbells for different exercise options. I purchased ShapeFit’s exercise bands for one of my clients and also for myself at Christmas time and it is amazing how much this style of training is used by myself, my family and my clients. Some come with bands which can be attached to handles or ankle straps and you can use different combinations of the bands to increase the weight resistance. Some sets come in a convenient sack which has Velcro to secure the bag and has a door attachment so that your bands can be anchored enabling you to do exercises such as lying leg curls, multi hip extensions, lat pulls, rows, vertical pressing and tricep pushdowns. The package is affordable and shipping is not too bad if you live in the United States. Take a look here on ShapeFit or head over to Amazon for a wide variety of different exercise bands.
A set of dumbbells and a quality bench are the final pieces on the list for your low cost home gym equipment. You can use the exercise ball as a bench for many of the exercises but once you want to go up heavier in the weight you will need to upgrade to heavier dumbbells and an incline, decline or flat bench. These types of benches are useful and also very affordable. An upgrade from here would include a small squat rack and Olympic set, which works well with all of the equipment you have accumulated but it can get a little spendy so look on CraigsList for affordable options for used equipment. Of course, you want to make sure there is a pullup bar on the squat rack too since pullups are amazing for developing your back and upper body!