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8 Inexpensive Fitness Tools Every Home Should Have

8 Inexpensive Fitness Tools Every Home Should Have

You don’t have to waste a fortune in order to look good. Being in shape is just a matter of will; you can hire the finest trainers and go to the best gyms, but if you don’t previously decide to dedicate yourself to your health, all of that will be for nothing.

With the right motivation, you can achieve that figure you always wanted in the comfort of your home and without worrying about unrealistic gym bills. Establishing a home workout routine is beneficial for several reasons – this small investment is here to stay and you’ll have every tool at your disposal forever. The whole family can use your little home gym, so that cuts bills significantly for your household, and you will have more time because there will be no home-gym-home traveling every time you want to exercise.

With this in mind, you should be feeling inspired to create your little home gym, so check out the following nine fitness tools that will boost your confidence and help you get fit in no time.

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1. Jump Rope

Although people avoid jump ropes because they usually have only two associations when those words are mentioned – little girls in pink dresses or tough boxers – using jump rope in your exercise routine is highly beneficial and it’s relatively easy for beginners to get used to the different exercises.

Apart from helping you burn a huge amount of calories (it actually can be more efficient than jogging), jumping rope makes you lighter on your feet. This means that your coordination gets significantly improved because this exercise is all about focusing on your feet. The more jump rope tricks you discover and learn, the more coordinated you’ll get.

2. Dumbbells

You should know that when compared to the barbell, dumbbells can be a bit more versatile, giving you a larger choice of exercises, and they are cheaper than a full barbell set and rack combo. They will provide you with plenty of variety in your workouts and they offer a more natural selection of movements, because unlike fixed machines and cables, they can move freely in all different directions.

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This exercise tool can be used to train both the lower body and the upper body, which makes them a worthy addition to your home gym, and one that’s quite efficient and simple to store at that.

3. Yoga Mat

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    The only difficult thing about yoga is starting to practice it – after that I’m sure you’ll fall in love with it just like everyone else. Of course, you should start with a beginner’s program and move up from there gradually. The list of benefits of practicing yoga is quite extensive. Other than the obvious benefit of increasing flexibility, it has a positive impact on your isometric strength and muscle tone, improves your respiration, decreases stress and increases your energy levels.

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    4. Foam Roller

    Your post-exercise routine is as important as the actual workout, and it’s quite important for you to take good care of your muscles. My suggestion is to go with a foam roller in order to prevent sore muscles and cramps, especially when it comes to your back. Lifting weights can burden your lower back muscles and if you don’t do something about it, you can be in pain for weeks.

    5. Stability Ball

    Speaking of spine alignment – stability balls are highly beneficial solution for this problem. It’s quite simple really. Because of ball’s instability, you need to work on balance and thus practice and achieve a proper posture. You can use it for stretches and simple workouts, but you should know there’s a ton of different tutorials that show you how to do a full body exercise with it.

    6. Ab Wheel

    Did you know that each rollout using an ab wheel actually moves over 20 muscles in your body? This smart tool is unbelievably efficient; if you’re persistent with repetition, you’ll get that six-pack you always wanted quite quickly. You should also know that using an ab wheel isn’t any more difficult than doing crunches – you’ll just need some time to get used to it.

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    7. Decent running shoes

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      The greatest problem I had with running is discipline – the most difficult part of this type of training is getting your mind in the zone and staying motivated, and if you do manage to be persistent in it, you will not only strengthen your body but your mind as well. Obviously, running helps you lose weight, but it also firms up your muscles equally and gradually. With a relatively decent pair of running shoes – which you can often get on sale – you’ll be ready to hit the road any time you feel like it.

      8. Mirror

      Having a mini gym is a pretty smart move, but you already know that you can hurt yourself by doing the exercises wrong. I’m sure you’ll go online and consult various tutorials and programs until you find the one that works for you, but you need to make sure your posture and your movements are reflecting those that you see – which is why a big mirror is an essential item in your home gym.

      Did you know that working out makes you happy? When you exercise, your mind tells your glands to release happiness hormones, because you’re doing a good thing for your figure, your health and your confidence. Exercising really contributes to the overall quality of your life and if you actually go through with your little home gym project, you’ll be a lot happier.

      Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/u/scott-webb-39047/ via pexels.com

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      Djordje Todorovic

      Blogger, Gamer Extraordinaire

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      Last Updated on May 22, 2019

      10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

      10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

      There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

      One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

      In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

      Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

      1. Cat Camel Stretch

      Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

      Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

      Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

      Here’s a video to guide you through:

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      2. Go for a Walk or a Run

      This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

      Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

      The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

      Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

      Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

      3. Jumping Jacks

      Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

      Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

      4. Abductor Side Lifts

      Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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      Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

      5. Balancing Table Pose

      This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

      Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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        6. Leg Squats

        Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

        Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

        The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

        7. Push Ups

        You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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        An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

        Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

        This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

        8. Bicycle Crunches

        There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

        Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

        9. Lunges

        Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

        Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

        This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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        10. Bicep Curls

        You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

        Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

        Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

        Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

        Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

        These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

        You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

        Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

        More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

        Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

        Reference

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