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You don’t necessarily have to go to the gym every other day to get in a good workout and work on your figure. Especially in the beginning, you can get by comfortably with what you have at home. And if you’re already an advanced athlete, you can equip your home gym with a few basic tools to give your body an effective workout. You’ll be able to lift heavier weights, gain muscle or lose weight from the comfort of your home. Let’s take a look together at what fitness equipment you shouldn’t be missing at home. We’ll also give you tips on how to replace your favourite exercise equipment with items you’re sure to have at home.
Effective fitness accessories for full-body workout at home
Let’s learn about the basic fitness accessories that will help you lose fat, gain muscle and get in shape.
1. Exercise mat
An exercise mat is an absolute essential that you should get for your home gym for several reasons.
- Ensures stability – home exercise mats usually have a “sticky” bottom layer that adheres to the floor. This keeps them securely in place and keeps you safer. You don’t have to worry about slipping during intensive exercises.
- Prevent blisters and bruises – for example, yoga mats are made of soft foam that prevents bruising of different parts of the body. It is thus a perfect accessory for sit-ups, push-ups and low planks to ensure maximum comfort.
- Protects your home – if you have soft flooring, for example, you definitely need to protect it from dumbbell scuff marks. A Puzzle Mat in any size can be a great way to protect the floor surface, so you can enjoy your workout without restriction. And if, for example, you exercise in shoes at home, a mat will help you prevent any black spots on the floor during exercise.
- It will please your neighbours – this point is essential for all those who live upstairs and share the building with neighbours. If you think they can’t hear you stomping when you exercise or are hitting the weights, you’re probably mistaken. They can hear, and they hear very well. So be considerate and use the pads not only during strength training, when you are loudly placing the dumbbells on the floor, but also during cardio, HIIT and other exercises where you are jumping and impacting the floor.
If you don’t have a yoga mat at home, you can use, for example, a camping mat that you may have hidden in your closet. But keep in mind that it might not have a grippy surface. It could easily become slippery. Similarly, a softer blanket and towel can also help to partially replace the mat. In case you use them, think about your safety and be more careful during exercise.
Looking for inspiration for home workouts? Then you shouldn’t miss our article 12 Body Weight Exercises that Will Get Everyone in Shape.
2. Resistance bands and expanders
The category of resistance bands and expanders will help beginners and advanced athletes in their training. They can be used in several ways.
- Resistance bands can be used as a means of making various exercises such as squats, lunges, push-ups and so on more difficult.
- Especially beginners can use them as an additional aid for exercises they cannot yet do on their own. Resistance bands can, for example, make it easier to do push-ups or dips. This will also allow you to focus on the correct technique. Over time, you will see yourself getting stronger and using the bands with less and less resistance. Eventually, you will get to the point where you won’t even need the help of the expanders when exercising.
Looking for inspiration for exercises with a resistance band? Then you shouldn’t miss our article 30 Full-Body Exercises with a Resistance Band.
You can target your upper body with the exercises you can find in our article 11 Resistance Band Exercises on the Pull-Up Bar for Strong Arms, Back and Core.
3. Fitness suspension system
The suspension training system is the most compact home fitness equipment. It fits into a small bag that you can store away or take with you anywhere. That’s why it’s popular with members of the Marine Corps, for example, who want to keep fit and strong without a gym.
The great advantage is that you can use the fitness suspension system practically anywhere:
- at home – hanging in the door frame, for example
- outdoors – hooked practically anywhere, e.g. on a bench, railing or pull-up bar on a street workout park
- at the gym – almost each gym has a suspension trainer
This versatile device has the advantage that with its help you can target practically each muscle group. By varying the inclinations and adjusting the straps, you can make any exercises more difficult or easier. You can thus use the suspension training system for several years and constantly improve individual exercises. Similarly, the AB Straps suspension system will also do you a great service, which will help you to strengthen the core of the body.
Wondering how to exercise with a suspension weight training system? Then you shouldn’t miss our article How to Exercise with A Fitness Suspension System? Discover Effective Full-Body Exercises.
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And what would an article about fitness equipment be if we didn’t mention the very foundation of the strength-training athlete – heavy weights, the lifting of which stimulates muscle growth. Dumbbells and weights however, can have many forms.
Olympic bar with weights
The Olympic bar is a classic that should not be missing in any gym. It can give you a good workout with squats, deadlifts and other complex exercises. How heavy a weight you put on it is up to you. But don’t forget to secure it withbarebell collars so it doesn’t slide down and cause injury.
Kettlebell is another universal accessory, with the help of which you can exercise almost all muscles on the body. It will make complex exercises more difficult, or it can also replace dumbbells in various pulling and pushing exercises.
If you don’t know how to set up a kettlebell workout, try some of the exercises we’ve put together for you in our article 8 Best Booty & Legs Exercises with Kettlebell.
Thanks to dumbbells you can do countless exercises for biceps, triceps, shoulders and entire arms. They can also be used as a weight for squats or deadlifts or instead of kettlebells for swings. They will easily become one of the most used aids in your home gym. How about giving hexagonal dumbbells a try? Thanks to a rubber coating they won’t roll away between sets.
And if you are just starting out with strength training and don’t want to buy dumbbells right away, you can start with bottles filled with water or sand.
Slam ball and medicine ball
Both types of balls are weights that can be used for home strength and cardio training. They are available in a variety of weights, so you’ll feel the burn even during a short workout.
Do you want advice on how to work out with a slam ball? Then you shouldn’t miss our article Improve Your Strength and Physical Fitness. Try Slam Ball Workout.
For tips on working out with a medicine ball, see our article 10 Exercises with a Medicine Ball to Strengthen the Abs.
Another practical accessory not only for home training. Its big advantage is its relatively soft material, which makes it good to perform, for example, repositioning and other CrossFit elements. The power bag is equally comfortable to handle if you put it on your back as a weight during lunges, squats and other exercises.
Weighted vest in different weight versions is another element that can make any of your workouts more challenging. Whether you do squats, lunges, or dips on the bars, you will see that with a weighted vest, your workout will be much more challenging. And for your muscles, such a workout will in turn be an additional stimulus to grow and get stronger. But you don’t necessarily have to use weighted vests only for strength training. They can also be a great aid when running or walking, where they can again make the activity a little harder and thus improve your fitness and performance.
If you don’t have these weights at home, it certainly doesn’t mean you can’t do an honest strength workout at home. You just need to improvise a little and create weights from what you have at home. For example, a backpack filled with books, a big water bottle or a 6 pack of mineral water will do you a great service.
5. Other equipment for your exercise corner
However, heavy weights, dumbbells or weight training systems may not suit everyone. That’s why we’ve put together a list of other exercise accessories to help you make your home workout more varied and effectively exercise your whole body.
Balance training equipment
Balance and stability training is important, for example, for those who practice yoga. However, virtually all athletes can benefit from better balance, as it can help them improve specific skills they need for their sport.
You can work on your stability and balance with the help of:
Skipping rope is definitely not an activity that only primary school children engage in. It is just the opposite. This accessory has rightfully earned its place in the training of boxers, crossfitters and other athletes who want to improve their physique or warm up before training. In addition, when jumping, you burn a large number of calories, improve explosivity and can also firm up problem areas. To make jump rope training more fun and easier, you can try a smart skipping rope that counts your skips and tracks your time.
If you want to learn more about the benefits of skipping rope and how to incorporate it into your training, you shouldn’t miss our article Weight Loss, Fitness Gain and 8 More Reasons to Start Jumping Rope.
The big colourful ball doesn’t have to be just for exercise. It can work great as a chair replacement for those who spend a large part of the day sitting at a computer. Since it has no backrest, it forces the middle of the body (core) to become more involved when holding the body, which helps with strengthening it. And perhaps not surprisingly, a stronger core usually means less back pain too, right?
However, you will see greater results if you use a fit ball for your workouts. If you don’t know how to do it, our article may help, 10 Effective Belly and Butt Exercises with a Fit Ball.
Parallel bars are especially popular with people who are involved in workouts and training with their own weight. That’s why they will also win your favour. However, with a little creativity, you can do the exercises you would do on them with the furniture you have at home. How about trying tricep push-ups with your hands behind your body? Instead of using the bars, you can use a sofa, chair or any other furniture.
Another versatile aid with which you can easily exercise your arms, back, chest, shoulders and the entire middle of your body at home. There are also pull-up bars available that don’t need to be drilled, so they can be removed and transported at any time. To make pull-ups and other exercises easier for you in the beginning, you can help yourself with resistance bands. Similarly, you can also hang various strengthening systems behind the trapeze. If you don’t want to keep the trapeze bar at home, you can also work out on it outside. In fact, it is a common part of various workout playgrounds. However, outdoor climbing frames for children can also be used.
For tips on exercises you can try with the pull-up bar, see our article How to Exercise on the pull-up bar? 10 Exercises for Beginners and Advanced.
Core slider or sliding pads
Sliding pads are one of the innovative fitness aids that are affordable, portable and great for a full-body workout. How about incorporating them in various lunges or knee extensions? You’ll see that even seemingly ordinary exercises take on a new dimension with the slide pads.
If you don’t have this at home, you can easily make one. Just put an unused cloth under each foot and practice on a slippery surface. In addition to enjoying a fun workout, you’ll also perfectly polish the floor.
Those who have more space in their home gym will appreciate the practical innovation in the form of an adjustable bench. You can set it in 8 different positions, so you can reliably get a quality strength training workout. It can be used just as well for HIIT. Try incorporating different types of skips, jumps or bench presses into your workout, thus making it a little more fun.
You may be wondering why you should have mirrors in your home gym. You want to work out, not see if you look good. But remember what the main walls at the gym look like. Yes, they’re covered in mirrors, but they are not there just so you can look at your physique.
Wall mirrors are the best way to monitor your technique immediately when working out. You don’t want to be squatting with your back arched and increasing the risk of injury, do you? With mirrors, you can be sure you’re exercising correctly and doing the maximum to get closer to your fitness goal. And the fact that you can see your pumped up muscles after your workout is just another added benefit.
What should you remember?
As you can see, there are a good deal of different fitness accessories that you can use for your home workout. Some of them are very compact, which you will appreciate especially if you live in a smaller apartment. However, if you have a garden, garage or other room in which you can create your own home gym, you have many more options. In addition to a variety of dumbbells, you can also get power racks, stands and benches to enjoy you a full-body workouts.
Do you have anyone amongst your friends who says that you can’t have an effective workout at home? Share our article so they can learn about the range of exercise equipment available for quality strength and endurance training.