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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Basic Fitness Equipment to Build Muscle & Increase Strength

Basic Fitness Equipment To Build Muscle & Increase Strength
There are several workout equipment pieces that everyone should keep on hand at home. These are all pieces which can be traveled quite easily with convenience. No matter your fitness level, no matter how light or easy your training commitment is everyone needs to have a few minimal items in order to maintain an active lifestyle toward optimal health. No need to break the bank either because these workout equipment pieces come with very reasonable price tags with ease in availability.

My first choice is the body ball. You may think weights would have been first but you can do so much more on a body ball just with body weight to get you started and keep you going so because of this I feel it nicely falls into first choice. Body balls can also allow you to progress your exercises from a beginner level to advanced level training. For example you can use a body ball to help you learn to do pushups by lying over the ball and keeping it at your midriff making the pushups much easier. As you accomplish this over a few weeks until it is easy you can then slowly advance the ball slowly over time toward you feet until you end up doing pushups with feet on the ball which is an advance exercise.

Body balls can also help you accomplish a good clean squat making it easier for you to lower while keeping knees from falling inwards. You can keep feet slightly forward to ensure the knees are always over the ankles and not creeping past the toes. Combined with resistance pieces such as bands, dumbbells, water bottles, and medicine balls you can really push your training to new levels and all done at the convenience of your home or on a warm day you can take it to the beach or park. Traveling this stuff with you to a track or area outdoors allows the option for cardio intervals which would really maximize your session.

Exercise bands fall into second place. They are lighter to travel than dumbbells yet still add excellent resistance to your workout. They also offer much more variety than the dumbbells for exercise choices. I purchased the Bodylastics set for a client and for myself at Christmas time and it is amazing how much use this system gets from myself, my family and my clients. They come with bands which can be attached to handles or ankle straps and you can use combinations of the bands to increase the weight resistance. The set comes in a convenient sac which velcros closed and has a door attachment so that your bands can be anchored enabling you to do exercises such as lying leg curls, multi hip extensions, lat pull, rows, vertical pressing and tricep pushdowns. The package is affordable and shipping is not too bad if you live in the US. I am in Canada but even so it was still worth it in shipping costs.

Dumbbells and a bench are the final pieces on the list. You can use the body ball as a bench in many ways but once you want to get heavier you need to upgrade to heavier dumbbells and an incline/decline/flat bench. These benches are so useful and are also affordable. An upgrade from here would include a small squat rack and Olympic set, which works will all the equipment you have accumulated; of course you want to ensure there is a pullup bar on this rack too!

Now we are talking some serious weight training. If you were to being at the top and over a year or two work your way down this list while training the whole time at home you would have progressed nicely into an advanced fitness level and be very happy with the results, ready to go beyond them!


  1. Good thing you were able to provide a video here. I like your article. In fact, the video has inspired me that much to continue my fitness quest.

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  2. Nice to hear Stacey! I hope it helps you with motivation!