Written by Kevin Nelson, Guest Writer
Doing fitness at home can be just as effective as exercising in the gym, even if you don’t have special exercise equipment. It is enough to get creative and take a fresh look at things around you. To let you know where to start, we’ll tell you what items can replace special equipment and help your home workout get a serious athletic attitude. Stay tuned to find out more.
Home workout safety
But, first of all, we draw your attention to the issue of security. The choice of exercise equipment from the items available at home should be approached no less seriously than the choice of professional sports equipment. Choose only those items in which you are completely sure and check them directly before training. The equipment should be suitable for you in weight and not slip out of your hands, and various analogs of platforms and gymnastic belts should hold your body weight. Spend a little time doing preliminary tests and be careful while doing the exercises to eliminate the slightest chance of injury.
If all the precautions do not scare you and you are ready to comply with them, then it’s time to move on to choosing sports equipment. Several kinds of DIY exercise equipment are possible here.
Exercises with extra weight help develop muscle mass, strengthen joints and ligaments, and eliminate excess weight. Additional weight workout list includes such exercise equipment as dumbbells, body bars, weights for arms and legs, barbells. But for most exercises, only simple dumbbells are enough. Or their substitutes.
At home, ordinary plastic bottles will be an excellent analog of dumbbells, used for strength training or as cardio exercise equipment. You can fill them with water, sand, or salt, and by changing the amount of filler, you can adjust the weight. Adding water to salt or rice will add even more exercise equipment weights.
Weight is selected depending on the number of repetitions. If you perform the exercise 15-20 times, then the weights should allow you to do exactly this number of repetitions. If you are doing strength training, then the weight should be significantly higher, but then the number of repetitions will be less.
Simultaneously, people with excess weight do not need to burden themselves with the additional load of at-home exercise equipment but should be engaged in using their weight. Only after stretching, stabilizing the joints and the entire musculoskeletal system you can perform more complex exercises.
With dumbbell substitutes, you can perform various lunges or arm raises. Make sure that such homemade things are convenient to hold and you will not be distracted during exercise. Carefully approach a bottle’s choice – the one with an hourglass shape will be the most optimal.
If you are looking for a replacement for a barbell or kettlebell, then try the following. Take a suitcase, put in as many books as you need, and the squat weight is ready. Holding the suitcase on your chest, you can do squats, regular lunges and lunges to the side, and glute bridges. Besides, a backpack filled with books and other heavy items will be an excellent assistant. Wear it on your back while squatting or lift it by the straps in the deadlift.
Several exercises do not require additional types of exercise equipment to perform. The muscles’ load is provided by maintaining balance in an unstable position and overcoming the equipment’s resistance.
For example, athletes often use a gymnastic roller to work out the abs and lower back. Rolling it forward, it is possible to achieve a position in which the core muscles are tense as much as possible, which means that they are better worked out. A similar technique can be used at home, using household products like a rolling pin with rotating handles or towels that slide easily on the floor instead of a roller.
You can also replace fitness and exercise equipment with towels. You can imitate sliding movements like a skater or roller while working out the legs’ muscles. Experts advise putting palms and feet on the towels and performing various planks and lunges: the sliding surface will make the position even more unstable and make more muscles work.
Instead of an expander, you can use an elastic bandage. Stretching it and overcoming resistance, it will be possible to work out the chest and shoulder girdle muscles, back, and even legs well. For overweight people, resistance bands are especially suitable for working out all joints, especially the shoulder and hip joints.
Using additional surfaces
Additional surfaces can perform different functions. For beginners, they serve as a stabilizer; and for those who have been practicing for a long time – give additional load. For example, an ordinary door will serve as necessary support for everyone who feels unstable when performing squats and lunges. It is enough to hold on to the door handle and “move” the door along during the exercise.
At the same time, the doorway will be a great place for push-ups. You need to put your hands on the sides of the doorway and move back so that the body forms a straight oblique line.
A simple interior door can also be used as exercise equipment for home, such as a support or a place for attaching a belt, a special yoga rope. Also, experts advise using books for push-ups. By stacking several books, you can perform reverse push-ups to work out the biceps. An ordinary book or several at once can fulfill the role of a supporting block in yoga, and all kinds of push-ups can be complicated with the help of such a device.
Stable chairs and small benches will replace the step platform and can also be used for push-ups, lunges, squats, folds, and leg raises. However, we do not recommend using soft furniture like a sofa or bed. Only a solid, stable surface will allow you to perform exercises and get the best quality.
If you don’t have home exercise equipment, you can still have a great workout. Professional equipment can be replaced with ordinary items that are found in almost every home.
To have an active sports life, first of all, you need a desire. Even without having everything you need at hand, you will find a way to train regularly, effectively, and with pleasure.
Tell us how do you replace exercise equipment at home? What item do you find most beneficial for home workouts?