Okay, so you might be wondering, "What are the favorite sandbag exercises of someone who makes workout sandbags? That is a good question. Before I took up sandbag training, I used barbells and before I used barbells I used dumbbells.
The first thing any of us do with sandbags is try to mimic barbell exercises with them. And while sandbags will do almost any barbell exercise, I think that they lend themselves to other, more complicated moves that enlist the stabilizer muscles into the action. And this is the benefit of sandbag training.
This is not meant to be a restatement of the directions for the exercises on our sandbag workouts page. Rather, it is a commentary on the benefits of each of what I consider to be the "top 10" of the 41 exercises described there. These "top 10" are the ones that I have illustrated. They are included in this post and are also on a page that I include with each purchase.
The harder the exercise, the smaller the sandbag you can use. For that reason the many of the small sandbag exercises are the toughest moves you can do with a sandbag. And, in my opnion, the most beneficial.
The X-lift works the core, legs, and arms in a sideways movement that is central to sandbag training. It makes either a great workout move or warmup move.
The turkish getup is not my idea of a warmup move. It is a total body workout in one exercise. I often do it with pushups, both using the small sandbag.
The pushup is my substitute for bench presses. In my opnion, bench presses are far overused in this country. We should do more pushups, both with and without a sandbag on our back. Do high reps without a sandbag, and low reps with a sandbag.
Also, do low reps with sandbag situps, and high reps without a sandbag. The sandbag is held with both arms under the bag, under your chin.
Swings can be done with a sandbag instead of a kettlebell. The shifting sand of the sandbag makes it even more effective.
The waist roll is one of the easiest moves of the small sandbag exercises. But it is vital to strengthening your core by strengthening your lower back.
Most guys buy our medium sized sandbags. They are probably the one bag to buy if you are going to buy only one. The most important moves can be done by guys with a medium bag. Gals can just drop down a size, or drop down in reps.
My favorite sandbag move for the medium bag is the smackdown. It is sorta like a twisting snatch. It works the whole body.
The back row is a good back exercise. Just bend over and row. Be careful not to hurt your lower back.
Another of my favorite medium sandbag exercises is the lateral throw. Just pick up a medium sandbag from beside one side of you and throw it laterally across your waist across the other side of you. A great core and gut exercise.
The large sandbag can be used for some of the above exercises, by lowering the rep[ count. It of course depends upon your size.
Another bench press substitute and I think improvement I call the chest press. LIe on your back and press the back up and down. You can also do this with one hand at a time using a smaller bag.
My main large sandbag exercises is the clean and jerk. This is the exception to this colleciton. It is done almost exactly like a barbell clean and jerk. Its total body benefits are many.
Extra large sandbags can e used either fairly full or very loose to weigh about the same as a large sandbag. That way you can do exercises from the large or even medium lislt. But let's assume that you are an average size guy like me. So the main exercise you can do with an extra large is the twisting deadlift.
For the twisting deadlift, a sandbag gives even more benefit by adding the 3 dimensional motion. Instead of picking it straight up and down, you pick it up from one side and put it down on the other. This brings even more muscle groups into play, giving even more benefit than a barbell exercise.
There are your top ten sandbag exercises. There are many more. Feel free to email me your favorites. I look forward to hearing from you. To see our complete list of sandbag exercises and workouts, visit our sandbag workouts page.