Equipment for an Awesome Home Workout: Focus on Sandbags

The shifting sands within the bag provide for a variable and unpredictable workout that results in an ocean of sweat pouring off your face.
  • Variable Weights
  • Filled with inexpensive play sand
  • Seven different grip positions
  • Two internal bladders for durability and modularity
  • Super Durable Outer Shell
  • Won't Leak Sand

I'll cover building your own sandbag at a later date, but if you've got roommates, a girlfriend, or anyone who doesn't want to risk dumping twenty or more pounds of sand on the carpet, you may want to consider buying a real sandbag.  This is the Ultimate Sand Bag from Henkin Fitness and, as far as sandbags go, it definitely lives up to its name.  Mine is of the “strength” line which means it can be filled up to a weight of about 85lbs through two internal bladders.  Once I filled mine up I tossed it on the scale and it measured about sixty-two pounds.

You don't want to overfill the bladders or the bag as this could eventually lead to a failure.  Because of the quality construction, heavy stitching, double closure bag, I wouldn't be worried about sand coming out, however I would be sad to have destroyed the bag through overloading it.  The bag has at least seven different handles on it which allows you to grip it any number of ways for any number of exercises.  It's a versatile tool that doesn't take up much space and is one of the heaviest things you can keep in your home without getting a full weight set.

The core workouts here revolve around shouldering, squatting, and pressing, which are your big three moves for gaining mass or losing weight.  There is an especially brutal workout where you shoulder the bag, squat, stand and press over the head and bring the bag down on the opposite shoulder.  Then squat and repeat.  This will have you sweating and panting in no time and is the most effective exercise to do with the sandbag.  I'm also a big fan of utilizing the bag for power cleans and overhead presses.

The only downside to the bag is the price: $126.99 retail.  What you get for this is a really durable bag that won't break.  You're basically paying for the peace of mind that you're not going to dump sand all over your house, which may be very worth it to some.  If you compare it dollar for dollar against other weight systems, it's not even that expensive.  A fifty-some odd pound kettlebell is $80 and is a one handed instrument.  The sandbag can do other exercises, recruit both hands, and weighs more.  You do have to buy your own sand, though I got good, clean play sand from Home Depot.  For a total of like $10 I got 80lbs of sand which filled my bag to sixty pounds and left twenty pounds for me to create my own smaller sandbag out of a book bag and trash can liners.

All in all, the price may be prohibitive to some, but the variety and intensity of the exercises make it a valuable tool in the home gym.

I got mine at Henkin Fitness Systems.

Sandbag squat

Robert Fure

Robert Fure is a fitness, lifestyle, and entertainment writer living in Los Angeles. He is also a certified Personal Trainer and the Creator/Editor of Fit and Furious, an online outlet dedicated to the pursuit of a fit lifestyle. His entertainment work can be viewed at Film School Rejects.