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At-Home Fitness Equipment Must-Haves

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At-Home Fitness Equipment Must-Haves

Looking to conquer your fitness goals in the comfort of your own home and without having to buy a gym membership? If so, be sure to get these affordable, portable and easy-to-use equipment items to build your at-home gym!

1. Jump Rope

When it comes to cardiovascular exercise, this is practically a necessity! Jumping rope is a great alternative to walking or running to get your blood flowing and heart rate revved up. Because it requires a fast pace and high intensity, you can torch fat and burn calories in a shorter period of time than if you were to do cardio at a constant, moderate intensity for 30-plus minutes.

Not only is jumping rope a source of cardio, but it also utilizes all major muscle groups while also improving balance and footwork. Plus, a jump rope is lightweight and easily portable, meaning you can fit it in your suitcase next time you go on vacation. Now you’ll have no excuse not to work out while you’re travelling.

2. Medicine Ball

This is a fitness staple, as it can be incorporated into exercises that target all major muscle groups. You also have the flexibility of selecting different weights according to the level of difficulty that you’d like to add to your workout. Here’s a look at the exercises you can do with a medicine ball:

  • Total Body: Lunge with Overhead Press
  • Total Body: Lunge with Twist
  • Total Body: Squat Press and Throw
  • Legs: Single Leg Squat
  • Legs: Single Leg Hip Bridge
  • Chest and Back: Rolling Push Up
  • Chest and Back: Weighted Superman
  • Arms: Shoulder Press
  • Arms: Triceps Extension
  • Core: Russian Twists
  • Core: Overhead Slam
  • Core: V-Up

3. Stability Ball

This is an awesome piece of equipment for strength and balance exercises. Note that stability balls come in different sizes. A way of determining which size is best for you is by sitting on the ball and making sure that you form a 90-degree angle from your hips to your knees. Additionally, stability balls are worth having if you plan to do Pilates workouts. You can do these moves with a stability ball:

  • Lower Body: Squat and Reach
  • Lower Body: Standing Ball Squeeze
  • Lower Body: Overhead Squat
  • Upper Body: Back Extension
  • Upper Body: Pike
  • Upper Body: Plank

4. Kettlebells

This is another equipment item that everyone should both have and use! As with many other pieces on this list, kettlebells are wonderful for performing strength-based exercises. They range in weight, so be sure to pick up one that will challenge you without being too heavy. With a kettlebell, you can do these exercises:

  • Total Body: Kettlebell Swings
  • Total Body: Single Arm Kettlebell Swings
  • Total Body: Kettlebell Lunge and Press
  • Back, Arms and Shoulders: Kettlbell Rows
  • Back and Legs: Kettlebell Goblet Squats
  • Core: Russian Twists

5. Resistance Bands/Tubes

Resistance bands or tubes are fantastic for adding resistance to your workout routine. They come in different strengths, lengths and sizes, so be sure to find ones that will work best for the specific exercises you want to do with them. These are also very portable, so next time you go on vacation, include them on your packing list. Do these moves with resistance bands/tubes:

  • Back: Bent Over Row
  • Back: Lat Pull Down
  • Chest: Standing Chest Press
  • Shoulder: Overhead Press
  • Shoulder: Lateral Raise
  • Shoulder: Upright Row
  • Arms: Standing Bicep Curls
  • Core: Woodchoppers

6. Exercise Mat

Exercise mats serve a dual purpose. You can use them for pre- and post-workout stretches in addition to using them for a cushioned surface when performing various ab exercises.

7. Dumbbells

There are few exercises that can’t be done using dumbbells. They come in a variety of weights and can be used for exercises involving all major muscle groups. Here’s a glimpse at some of the many exercises that involve dumbbells:

  • Legs: Lunges (many variations)
  • Legs: Squats (many variations)
  • Back: Bent Over Dumbbell Raise
  • Chest: Chest Press
  • Arms: Shoulder Press
  • Arms and Shoulders: Bent Over Reverse Flies
  • Arms and Shoulders: Upright Rows
  • Arms: Bicep Curls
  • Arms: Tricep Extensions and/or Kickbacks
  • Core: Russian Twists
  • Core: Renegade Rows
  • Core: Crunches with Weight Behind Head

8. Ankle Weights

Ankle weights add a challenge to any cardio or strength training workout! If you’re walking or running, wear ankle weights to increase the intensity and amount of calories burned. If you’re looking to tone up your leg muscles, then ankle weights will do the trick. See this list of ankle-weight exercises below planning your next leg day:

  • Squat Jumps
  • High Knees
  • Hip Extension
  • Side Leg Raises
  • Front and Rear Leg Raises
  • Split Squats
  • Lunges
  • Seated Leg Extensions
  • Squat to Leg Lift
  • Single Leg Bridges

9. Abdominal Wheel

The abdominal wheel is your ticket to washboard abs! Not only does the ab wheel tone, tighten and sculpt your abdominal muscles, but it also helps with core stabilization. Core stability is key for total body exercises that involve the engagement of your ab muscles for balance and added strength. For example, you need to have a stabilized core to be able to squat heavy weight. Incorporate abdominal wheel rollouts into your fitness plan and you’ll notice yourself getting stronger in all your lifts.

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