It’s that time of year again! The gift-giving season is just around the corner. And if your 2020 has been anything like mine, you’ve had to make do with working out in the garage or basement. And you’ve probably had a hard time finding any equipment for it since dumbbells are sold out, barbells back-ordered, and benches non-existent. So today, I’m sharing my top ten fitness gift ideas for your favorite gym buddy (or maybe yourself!)
These recommendations are based on equipment that I already have or want to get next. It’s not my medical opinion that these are better than anything else, just my personal opinion that these are fun alternatives to the traditional home gym routine! And I’ve found that they are more readily available than standard weights you may be used to.
Dr. James Larson is an orthopedic surgeon specializing in sports medicine and arthroscopic surgery. He also holds a CF-L1 certificate and is a Certified BFR Specialist. He supports weight training and high-intensity exercise throughout the lifespan. He started LSO to keep more people moving better, longer.
Inverted Row Bar
Inverted rows are a great alternative to standard pull ups. You work many of the same muscles (maybe not in the same direction, but that’s okay) and they are a lot easier for most people. And don’t we all need something a little easier in our lives lately? Well this portable Inverted Row Bar requires no installation, won’t damage your door frames, and folds up easily for storage
Weighted Jump Rope
Do you love to jump rope? Do you also destroy everything you take pleasure in by pushing it too far? Then, baby, have I got the product for you! A weighted jump rope is just what you’ve been looking for if double-unders are old-hat and fancy skipping has become blasé. It’s amazing what an entirely new and devastating experience jumping rope can be when you switch over to this body-and-soul-crushing one-pound heavy rope. Try the two-pounder if you really want to finish 2020 with a bang!
Soft Plyo Box
Think back- when was the last time you actually jumped? If you can’t remember, you should probably change that! Jumping is both a great way to get in shape and a primary measure of your functional capacity. And a nice padded box will help you work on those leaping skills without wrecking your shins on a missed jump.
Fitness Sand Bag
Doing a clean and jerk with a barbell is a great way to build strength. But let’s be honest; the stuff you have to lift everyday is big, awkward, and totally unbalanced (wait, I feel personally attacked by my own writing…) And what better way to work on your functional lifting capacity than by practicing on something big, awkward, and unbalanced? That’s where fitness sandbags come in. This big duffel is filled with adjustable, sealed bags of sand that shift and move while you try to lift, lunge, squat, and twist with them.
Being strong is great, but it won’t translate into athletic ability unless you couple it with speed and agility training. Sports don’t move at the speed of a Bulgarian Split Squat. But your feet will have to if you want to keep up on the court. Take a step out from under the squat rack and learn to move those feet now that you’ve mastered having them planted.
This one hits close to home for me, since my teenage son said that my quarantine beard makes me look like “Fat Thor” from Endgame! So what better way to get rid of that “Quarantine-19” than swinging around a 35 lb pound mallet? Or a pair of them! Besides, it’ll be good practice for when the coronavirus inevitably mutates to cause zombies and you need to crack some undead skulls!
Maybe you’ve realized that the soul-crushing gravity of 2020 has done wonders to build your mental resilience? After all, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! Well the same can be said for the low pressure tourniquets used in Blood Flow Restriction Training. These allow you to build strength and muscle with low weights and high reps nearly as well as lifting heavy. So with a set of BFR bands, you can still build muscle even if you have a bad back, arthritic knees, or just a four-month back-order on your set of heavy iron for the garage gym!
The Kettle Gryp let’s you expand the functionality of your home gym. By clamping this over the handle of your regular dumbbells, you can turn them into kettlebells for double the fitness duty. Maybe that will help you get a handle on something else in your life, like the anxiety of staring into the hellscape of 2021!
We’ve all had to start balancing many different roles this year, whether it be home-schooling-remote-worker or simply stacking your coping mechanisms into the rough shape of a functional adult. Either way it reminds me that balance is the key to life, and that includes fitness. Adding these pods to your workout ups the degree of difficulty to any movement by forcing your body to actively stabilize. That lets you add core work to just about any exercise, and really helped my see a big change in my abs!
You may have seen our previous post on how to bring the workout with you by using pull-up assistance bands for strength training. Well the Gorilla Bow takes it one step further. By attaching resistance bands to this bow you can get in a full body workout. It allows you to do lifts from chest press to deadlift and everything in between with equipment that can be stored in the corner of your room! Plus we all know the coolest post-apocalyptic characters all use a bow. May as well start practicing now!
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