Stuff We Love: Home Gym Equipment

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
2/15/2011 5:30 AM   :  45 comments   :  17,894 Views

Over the years I have built up my stock of home gym equipment. While I currently have a gym membership, I find having a variety of home gym equipment helps to add more choices to my workouts, especially during the winter months when I can't make it to the gym due to bad road conditions. I'll share with you some of my favorite pieces of home gym equipment.





Bender Ball ($12.98 and up. Price varies according to which DVD collection you purchase.)

The Bender Ball is a small and simple piece of equipment, but I find it very effective. I like the fact that it is simple and you don't have to do a long workout with it in order to see its benefits. Other reasons why I like the Bender Ball are that it is inexpensive, takes up very little space in my house, can be purchased on Bender Ball's website or can be found at your local Target store. Who else likes the Bender Ball? Coach Nicole, of course! Click here to see Coach Nicole's review about the Bender Ball.





SparkPeople Stability Ball ($20)

I had to replace my stability ball a little over a year ago when one of my cats popped it. I had that one for several years, but wanted to make sure I replaced it with a quality stability ball. I purchased one from the SparkPeople Store and am happy that I did! This stability ball is high quality, made from a tough, non-toxic PVC material, is anti-burst, and has a weight limit of around 250 pounds. It has survived being around my cats, along with me using it for many stability ball exercises. The stability ball is a great piece of equipment because it is so versatile!





Embark Triple Stepper Resistance Bands ($19.99)

Resistance Bands are a wonderful piece of equipment. They are perfect to take while traveling since they are light and don't take much room at all. Just throw them in your bag or suitcase and you have multiple strength training workouts waiting for you when you get to your destination! What I like about the Triple Stepper Bands is that there are multiple bands to increase the difficulty. It comes with 3 bands, light, medium, and heavy. You can choose which bands you would like to use. If you only want to use 1 band at a time, just quickly unsnap the other 2 bands. Need to add some more resistance? Just snap on another band. Easy and quick solutions with this product!





Weider 5 Position Step Bench ($49)

This is one of my oldest pieces of home gym equipment, but it has lasted through many uses! When I was looking for a step bench to use at home, I didn't have much space to store it. The traditional step benches come with pieces that you can add to the bottom of the step bench, but that requires a lot of space to store them. The solution for me was this 5 Position Step Bench by Weider! It is a step bench that has 5 notches (1 inch difference between each notch) that you can use to raise it, so there is no need to store extra pieces. If you are looking for a step bench that doesn't need extra space for storage and that will stand the test of time, this might be the step bench for you!





Century Wavemaster XXL Training Bag ($281.49)

This is a piece of equipment that I love using for kickboxing workouts. While you don't need this to do kickboxing, I really enjoy the fact that you actually get to kick and punch something. It gives a great overall workout each and every time! This has withheld over several years, many kickboxing workouts, and is perfect for those days that you need to let out frustration!





Everlast Training Gloves ($29.99)

I use these for my kickboxing workouts to help protect my hands. While there are other types of training gloves, I like these because they are comfortable, keep my fingers together, and none of my skin is exposed. These help pad my hands a great deal and I never have any problems of having sore hands after my kickboxing workouts. Those are all great features, but I also like that these training gloves have breathable fabric and don't irritate my skin at all.





Xerball Medicine Ball ($22 and up. Price varies according to the weight of the ball.)

The medicine ball helps add variety to my home workouts. It allows for me to add new exercises to my strength training program when I don't want to use the usual dumbbell and/or resistance band exercises. For me, I love to have many options available for my workouts. You can find medicine balls in any sporting good store, and usually you can also find them in your local Target or Walmart stores. Not sure what kinds of exercises you can do with a medicine ball? Check out examples here!





Go Fit Foam Roller ($24.99)

The foam roller is a great addition to any workout! I mostly use my foam roller for releasing tightness in my muscles, but you can use it in a variety of ways. I purchased my Go Fit Foam Roller in my local Target store a couple years ago and am still using it. There are many other types of foam rollers out there, but this is a good one to start with that I have found to hold up over time.





Go Fit Kettlebell ($24.99 and up. Price varies according to the weight of the ball.)

Kettlebell workouts are becoming more popular and I didn't jump on the kettlebell wagon until last year. If you want a great strength training and cardio workout all-in-one, you might want to give these a try. Again, these can be purchased at most sporting goods stores or your local Target or Walmart stores. I found the Go Fit Kettlebell at Target and have been happy about that purchase! Click here to see SparkPeople employees doing their first kettlebell workout.





Powerblock Dumbbells ($279/pair and up. Price varies according to the set.)

These dumbbells are the latest addition to my home gym. While these may sound expensive for dumbbells, they are worth it! They come as one pair of dumbbells, but you can change the amount of weight that you want to lift, which is quick and easy. Another bonus to this type of dumbbell set is that they don't take up much space. In order to get the variety of weights that you get with this set, you would need a lot of space to store them. These are also great if you have multiple people using them. My husband can use the much heavier options (ours go up to 90 pounds for each hand) and we didn't have to invest in multiple sets of dumbbells. There are other dumbbells similar to this style, which you may find as a less expensive option for your home gym.





Netflix ($7.99 and up. Price varies according to the subscription plan chosen.)

I have always enjoyed doing workout videos at home! Having a Netflix subscription allows me to try out various workout videos before purchasing them. I can't tell you how many times I have purchased a workout video only to be disappointed once I tried it out. With Netfix, it's easy to return the duds and I don't waste any money on them! The fun part is when Netflix adds videos to their instantly streamed collection so that I don't even have to wait for the actual DVD to come in the mail. When instantly streamed, I can watch it using my Wii console. How much easier can that be? For those of you that like to use workout videos, you may want to consider trying Netflix. (Currently, they have a free trial for one month.)

Do you have any of the items listed here? What is your favorite piece of home gym equipment?


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Comments

  • READYTOMOVE39
    45
    I have the mat for floor exercises and the P90X for brave and eager days to work-out, a Pilates CD for core and strength...again need the mat. I have a jump rope, resistance band (you can do biceps, stomach, legs, etc.) and a medicine ball...all I can hide in the closet when company comes over. When I am too tired from work to change to go to the gym or go running I do some type of work-out at home which then you don't feel bad. - 8/22/2011   4:18:21 PM
  • BABSWORLD
    44
    I really want to try one of those Bender Balls! - 2/22/2011   8:30:49 PM
  • 43
    I use my Tony Little gazelle which I've used for years and I just added the abdoer twist. I have the Tony Little easy shaper and a portable elliptical trainer. I have some videos as well but found that Comcast has a fitness on demand and you can work out to a lot of different workouts there. I had a stability ball but got rid of it after the one I used in a gym exploded while I was on it. - 2/19/2011   12:56:47 PM
  • 42
    I do most of my work at home. This has been very helpful! Thanks! - 2/17/2011   11:48:38 PM
  • 41
    I just recently went on Craigslist where I live and found a private owner selling his punching bags....50 lbs and 90 lbs with chain and stand...it also came with a speed bag holder. I love to box and was thrilled to find all of this at a very cheap price (and almost looks brand new) I agree it is an awesome workout and great for stress reduction on those days when you want to scream!!! - 2/17/2011   4:44:10 AM
  • 40
    I never thought about using my Netflix membership to try work out videos. Brillant! - 2/17/2011   12:09:06 AM
  • 39
    First, let me say how much I love the "Stuff We Love" series! I have found a few key workout tools reading the blogs! I have a stability ball which is probably my favorite home workout tool. I have a SP resistance band, and 3 sets of handweights/dumbbells. I also have a subscription to Netdlix, but had forgotten to try out workout videos! I did when we first got it, then I got away from it.... Thanks for the reminder. I am blind, so really appreciate trying out a video to see if I can follow along before purchasing it! I know there is only so much all of you can love, but I do hope to read more "Stuff We Love" blogs! I just want to remind people to make use of the SP videos too! What a fantastic and free workout at home tool! - 2/16/2011   10:54:03 PM
  • GQCC78387
    38
    I am very interested in the resistance band, the step bench, and the medicine balls. But, I don't have a lot of space in my home and the only place I can do my exercises are in the living room. - 2/16/2011   8:53:37 PM
  • HVIOLETTE
    37
    Right now I only have a sticky mat, resistance bands, 3# dumbbells and a few videos, but they're enough to keep my going with some variety. I'm looking forward to trying kettlebells in a few months...looks fun! - 2/16/2011   8:27:09 PM
  • SARAHJ521
    36
    I really enjoy going to the gym, but sometimes it's nice to work out at home too! I look forward to purchasing some of these items. Thank you for the Netflix idea...I just signed up and didn't even think about doing workouts from there. - 2/16/2011   4:43:40 PM
  • 35
    I have quite a bit of this equipment, but I really wish I had the space for a kickboxing bag like that! I take classes at a studio and love it. I wish I could practice at home on a bag. Instead I just punch into the air and try to work on my form. - 2/16/2011   4:06:30 PM
  • EMMKAYC
    34
    I workout at home using exercise videos from On Demand. There is a huge selection and variety. - 2/16/2011   9:59:39 AM
  • 33
    I just got the wii fit plus board for christmas and ive been having a blast on it i havent even made it through everything on it but im loving it you get to fake rid a bike all over this island i fell over a lot at first and crashed int walls n such plus i walk with the boys a lot thats why i love the tracker for distance here on spark people ive lost 100 lbs and blab all the time bout how ive learned to eat better and gotten more envolved in life . how. sparkpeople.com - 2/16/2011   9:47:29 AM
  • 32
    I don't do home things except xbox or zumba tapes. I get bored easy with the home stuff and end up walking away and not putting my all into it. - 2/16/2011   9:01:44 AM
  • 31
    I just discovered Netflix's collection of fitness videos too and am super psyched. I've been wanting to try out some new Jillian Michaels DVDs but have not wanted to purchase them. I can also stream YouTube to my tv to get my SparkPeople workouts:) - 2/16/2011   8:40:19 AM
  • 30
    You can also get great workout DVDs at your local library. We have a number of them using different exercise styles - something for everyone. - 2/16/2011   8:06:36 AM
  • SARAHIDC1180
    29
    I never knew that Netflix had the workout DVD's. I think I am going to consider subscribing to Netflix because since I have a 5 year old and a 2 year old, doing my work out at home sometimes is more convenient. Thanks for all the tips! - 2/16/2011   7:46:10 AM
  • 28
    LOVE LOVE LOVE my home gym. I have a stability ball, weights, resistance bands, an elliptical trainer, yoga blocks, mat, and straps, and a LOT of dvds. So great to have so many options during the cold Michigan winters. - 2/16/2011   6:37:18 AM
  • 27
    I didn't know about Netflix having workout videos - and I've had a subscription for months! Looking forward to trying them. Thank you! - 2/15/2011   10:46:06 PM
  • 26
    What a great idea getting workout videos with Netflix. I don't have a subscription, but that is a great reason to consider it! I find it's pretty impractical for me to buy videos in general because I get bored with them easily. With Netflix I could constantly switch it up and even rent old favorites. Thanks for the tip! - 2/15/2011   10:40:54 PM
  • 25
    I can NOT do the bender ball. Bought it long time ago, and can NOT tolerate that at my back. Much too painful. I DO have the Kettlebell worx, and LOVE the workout I get from that. Also recently bought the ZUMBA videos from zumba.com, and can hardly wait to try them. - 2/15/2011   10:26:33 PM
  • 24
    The medicine ball is on my shopping list! - 2/15/2011   3:31:16 PM
  • 23
    I have to mention that Coach Nicole's DVDs are not available through Netflix... - 2/15/2011   1:31:31 PM
  • 22
    I was curious about the bender ball but had seen mixed reviews about it, it's great to know that it works. - 2/15/2011   1:04:28 PM
  • 21
    This is a great help to me. I have been considering buying a few of these items for home workouts. Thanks for the info! - 2/15/2011   11:41:00 AM
  • 20
    I have 2 peices of fitness stuff I love. my treadmill of course. And I love my easy shaper by Tony Little. It's a one pound bar with stretch bands on each end. It can go up to 65 pounds of resistance just by winding the stretch bands around the bar. It comes a part and can be put into it's own carry case. So you can take it with you. I have other things but these are my favorites. - 2/15/2011   11:00:51 AM
  • 19
    I am considering the kettlebells. I use a couple at the gym and like them, but I'm never sure if I need to add more to my home collection. My next purchase is definitely going to include heavier dumbells, because I am getting too strong to be challenged by my heaviest ones. - 2/15/2011   10:58:15 AM
  • SP_COACH_NANCY
    18
    Love your favorites! AWESOME review! - 2/15/2011   10:57:42 AM
  • 17
    I found the bender ball at Sport Authority about 2 weeks ago. I'm still feeling Sunday's workout (and it was MAYBE 15 minutes long). It's truly a great tool for strengthening the abs, and in my opinion it's as effective - or better than - the Ab Lounge. It's more versatile than the Ab Lounge and takes up WAY less space.

    I have been on the "kettlebell wagon" for about 2 years now. I've read a lot of articles and purchased a few videos. I currently own 3 Go Fit kettlebells (because they are cheaper than the higher quality kettlebells). I also have 4 Ader kettlebells and am about to purchase 2 more Ader. Though I've purchased all this stuff, I didn't get serious about my kettlebell workouts until just recently. Kettlebells are a serious fitness tool and shouldn't be taken lightly. A person can be injured if they don't have proper form, so they must be careful. I believe kettlebells are the number one best fitness tool out there, and I am going to a workshop with an RKC (Russian Kettlebell Certified) trainer on Feb 26th. (I can't wait!) If you want to learn about the history of kettlebells (which appear to date back to the 1700's), check out DragonDoor .com/kettlebells. DragonDoor has the most comprehensive information on kettlebells, along with kettlebell merchandise (DVD's, etc) and will point you in the right direction. - 2/15/2011   10:23:57 AM
  • 16
    I use some workout DVDs at home, I have a Bender ball that would work if I would remember to actually use it! Oh and I have foam roller that is the same way! - 2/15/2011   10:12:17 AM
  • 15
    I'm building my hme equipment and will add a bender ball! - 2/15/2011   9:52:17 AM
  • 50PLUSBABY
    14
    I just realized that I have a lot of equipment that I do not use from the blog. Thanks, I have to dust some of it and begin to use more. - 2/15/2011   9:49:24 AM
  • SWTKANDI
    13
    this was really helpful. - 2/15/2011   9:48:02 AM
  • ERNAFLOWER
    12
    I love that your favorites are mostly affordable and can be hidden in a closet for those of us with small spaces. Thanks - 2/15/2011   9:29:04 AM
  • 11
    I never thought of streaming workout videos from Netflix via the Wii console. Great idea!
    - 2/15/2011   9:23:16 AM
  • 10
    I have triple resistance bands,not by Embark, and they are great; a stability ball, step board, weights, roller and one of those things that's sort of like part of a BOSU ball, used for practicing core stability while standing. I also have a treadmill, given my by a friend who moved on to half-marthons.
    No idea what a bender ball is different from a stability ball, and since I've no one to show me how to use a kettleball properly, I'll give that one a pass. KickBoxing's not my thing, so I don't need to worry about that sort of equipment - 2/15/2011   9:14:47 AM
  • 9
    I don't have the exact product brand names that are listed, but I do have a set of resistance bands, a step and a foam roller. And while I love my foam roller, I prefer a PVC pipe. ;) - 2/15/2011   9:13:40 AM
  • 8
    I wish that step gave a weight limit. We've been looking at different steps and I've only found on for about $100 by Cathe that supports 300 lbs but it's HUGE. We've lost all of our weight doing at home workouts so I'm a big fan of anything that makes it excuse free to get off your rump! ;-) - 2/15/2011   9:04:00 AM
  • 7
    Thank you Denise for sharing your favorites with us. - 2/15/2011   8:45:11 AM
  • STEPFANIER
    6
    GREAT blog, Denise. Thanks for sharing all of your favorites! - 2/15/2011   8:38:27 AM
  • 5
    I'm another big fan of using Netflix for my workout videos. I'm still fairly new to working out (a long way to go on weight loss, due to falling off then getting back on the exercise wagon), so I love the ability to try a DVD to see if it fits my fitness level. If it doesn't, I can look for something else for the next day's exercise. Plus, as my fitness increases, I'm hoping that I'll be able to choose new DVDs that fit better without having a DVD sitting on my shelf that I've gotten too used to. - 2/15/2011   8:24:12 AM
  • 4
    It's too bad the resistance band has such poor reviews, I like how it's adjustable. - 2/15/2011   8:18:55 AM
  • 3
    Love my Stability ball, plain old cheap dumbbells, and resistance bands. And of course my SparkPeople DVD's - 2/15/2011   7:32:58 AM
  • 2
    Thanks for the information about Netflix as I have been a customer for a couple of years and never thought about the exercise DVDs!! Will give these a try before buying. - 2/15/2011   6:59:37 AM
  • 1
    I only have the stability ball, but I will get the kettlebells. I saw a members blog and she was using the kettlebell. I use a regular weight and the moves were fun. That is a must get. The Benderball is another must. Thanks for the heads up! - 2/15/2011   6:29:02 AM

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