Home gyms have become more popular than ever. While they were always a great option for those who wanted a convenient place to workout without having to drive to a fitness center, with the COVID-19 lockdowns, they became essential for many.
An article in the Washington Post reports that the “home-fitness business took off like wildfire” as soon as the lockdowns took effect, with sales of all things fitness-related skyrocketing. If you’re looking to do the same, you’ll want to be sure your home gym includes all the necessities, like these.
Resistance bands take up little room, are cheap, and incredibly versatile. You can do everything from a full-body workout that targets every major muscle group, and they’re available in a variety of levels, from very light to heavy. The bands exert force on the muscles when they are stretched and can be used for both lower- and upper-body training as well as improving flexibility and joint mobility. Check this post for more resistance band workouts.
You don’t have to practice yoga for a mat to be essential. Mats can be used for more intense exercises like core work and plyometrics. Jump mats have more cushion to help prevent injuries and double as a yoga mat, ideal for setting up a home gym on a hard floor.
A medicine ball is an all-around fitness tool that can be thrown, lifted, or even slammed to enhance conditioning and strength.
At Least One Piece of Quality Cardio Equipment
Cardio machines aren’t cheap, but a home gym really requires at least one quality piece. If you’re on a limited budget, you might consider searching local Facebook or Craigslist ads as so many people tend to buy them and never use them, selling them at a much lower price than any retailer. It is possible to find a new indoor stationary bike for under $500, and while a quality treadmill can be hard to come by for less than $1,000, there are some more affordable options that are highly rated. The XTERRA Fitness TR150 can be had for under $400, and it even folds up, ideal for those with limited space.
If buying a pricey cardio machine is out of the question, a jump rope can provide a killer full-body workout. You can burn a ton of calories while enhancing heart health, improving bone density and coordination.
Dumbbells or hand weights are inexpensive and an essential part of regular exercises, working to tone muscles and build strength while allowing for a wide range of exercises. If you want to save space, consider adjustable dumbbells that have the ability to go light or heavy.
An Ice Bath
An ice bath, also referred to as cold water immersion, is a form of cryotherapy. You’ll sit in the chilly water for up to 15 minutes, which helps to quicken recovery and reduce inflammation. It aids in flushing out metabolic waste after a workout to improve recovery time while also preparing you mentally for other difficult conditions. Challenging your body by being exposed to different stimuli and stresses will make you more resilient, and it can even improve your mood and support brain health.
You won’t have to spend nearly as much as you would on other recovery options like a hot tub, as you can find a high-quality ice bath for sale online at less than $1,200. Plus, there’s no need to freeze to reap the benefits, a temperature that’s anywhere between 50 and 59 degrees Fahrenheit will work.