Are you one of the millions of people who have pledged to take care of their bodies by exercising more in 2022? Whatever your reasons for upping your exercise game, the benefits go beyond just getting in shape.
According to the Mayo Clinic, regular physical activity combats weight gain, helps you fight disease and health conditions, boosts energy and mood and, perhaps most importantly, is a major de-stressor. So where to start buying home workout equipment without spending thousands for an exercise bike or elliptical?
If guidance is your thing, there are countless video apps and services to get involved in, many with free trials. Aaptiv, Fitbod, Sworkit and FitOn range from free to premium, or offer free trials to get you started on your running, cardio or strength training journey, and there are endless free workouts on YouTube.
However, you’ll still need some gear to help you get going, so we asked Jessica Rae, founder of Rae Studio in San Francisco and Fitterserve Anywhere, for some tips on low-cost equipment to enhance your DIY workouts. Turned to the trainer.
Simply add water — a little or a lot — to adjust the weight of this at-home kettlebell, which can help improve your balance and endurance.
These popular weighted bangles, which you have probably seen on Instagram, let you integrate fitness into your daily life. We put them on our wrists or ankles for a morning walk, and our workouts are instantly enhanced – you’ll definitely feel their effect!
This cooling performance fabric towel is perfect for wiping away sweat after a hot workout.
Highly rated, attractive to look at, and easy to pack and take with you – there’s not much we love about this mat that you can use for yoga, stretching, and floor workouts.
ProsourceFit Extra-Thick Yoga and Pilates Mat ($18.99, originally $31.99; walmart.com)
One of the highest-rated yoga mats we’ve found, this model from ProsourceFit comes in eight attractive colors and is 1.5 inches thick to give you more support and cushion during your workout.
“I have a huge background in MMA, kickboxing in particular, and jumping rope is a big part of our cardio warm-up,” Rae says. “It’s usually a few rounds of jacks, jumping rope and shadowboxing in the mitt work.” This electronic rope is surprisingly high-tech for the price. It features electronic calculation of calories, miles and kilometers, one-click button to view exercise results and anti-slip handles.
This lovely jump rope has handles that weigh .5 pounds each, adding to the intensity of your workout.
This heavy-duty rope will challenge your body and target your muscles, helping you burn fat at home.
“If you like investing in workout accessories that are well made, this is your rope,” writes one 5-star reviewer of this smooth-spinning, premium jump rope.
You’ll need performance-motivated trainers for whatever jump-starting, jumping, and running you’re going to be doing. This pair from New Balance is by far the lightest trainer we’ve worn, and they slip on easily without any fuss.
The adidas NMD has long been our favorite comfy sneaker for workouts, athletic looks, and everything in between. Find more of our top-rated, super-comfortable sneakers here.
“I see the benefits of a trampoline dedicating exercise to balance, coordination, mobility, core and overall cardiovascular fitness,” says Rai. This 36-inch trampoline, which can hold up to 250 pounds, folds up for easy storage and weighs only 14 pounds. Reviewers love this thing, too, with over 4,000 5-star reviews.
Easy to store in a closet or behind a door, a mini trampoline takes up little space and provides a great calorie-blasting workout. Get your bounce on with this nearly silent rebounder—supporting up to 450 pounds—which you can “feel in your feet after five minutes,” according to reviewers.
Rai also suggests an exercise barre, sliders, and resistance bands to complement your home workout.
Underson Fitness Resistance Loop Band, 5-Pack ($78.95; amazon.com)
This set of bands comes with access to a training program that will start you with rows, pulls, lifts and flyes to exercise your arms, back, hips, legs, chest and abdominal area.
Bala Resistance Bands, 5-Pack ($15, originally $20; amazon.com)
The set includes five resistance bands of various strengths, with inspirational sayings like “don’t stop now” and “keep going”—plus a bag to store them neatly.
Smooth on the bottom, the sliders let you glide along a smooth surface, like a wood or tile floor. They work by trying to balance your body, which strengthens your core muscles.
Thirty48 Gliding Disc Core Slider & 5 Exercise Resistance Band ($15.95; amazon.com)
This set of sliders and resistance bands includes everything you need to run a core and strength routine.
BalanceFrom Bike Trainer Stand ($40.49; amazon.com)
If you’re off the road for the winter but are missing the feel of riding your bike, this highly rated stand easily converts a road bike into an indoor bicycle. Take a spin class on an app, or just crank up some tunes and pedal away!
Ready to jump into indoor cycling but don’t want to spend a lot or don’t have a lot of space? Try this folding upright bike that Amazon shoppers love.
This under-desk pedal exerciser probably won’t make you sweat, but if you’re concerned about being too sedentary, this highly rated little machine is, according to one reviewer, “super quiet and even comes with resistance bands.” If you need a gentle workout, add upper body exercises.
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