5 must-do exercises to do with workout sandbags

If there are only 5 exercises you should do with workout sandbags, here they are.  If you are like me, sometimes you just want to hit the high spots and move on.  Pushups, pullups, situps, and stair climbing, and stepups or stepovers are some of the best exercises there are.  With workout sandbags, you can make them in to superman training.

Many fitness experts think that the bench press is one of the main training exercises.  I am not one of them.  I think bench presses are highly overrated.  And they are highly dangerous.  Every year hundreds of mostly young men die by being strangled with a bar.

Fortunately, pushups work the same muscles and more.  They are actually better for functional fitness than bench presses.  Placing sandbags on your back when doing them elevates pushups to the point of being

fitness sandbags pushups

extreme training.The photo at right shows how to do them with our small workout sandbags. To take the exercise to its limit, put your hands on basketballs and your feet on small stools. You will  need to use some sort of padding for your knees.  Kneel down, grab the bag, pull it over your head, place it down your spine as pictured, and put your feet on the stools.  Then put your hands on the basketballs and do your pushups.  This is a low rep exercise.  You might want to warm up without the sandbags first.

Pullups are, in my opinion, the best back exercise there is.   Throw in the fact that they work the arm muscles (yes, the biceps) and it makes them one of the best exercises

pullups with exercise sandbags

there are.  By putting a small bag between your thighs and holding on, you can elevate pullups to superman status. Of course, any of these exercises done with workout sandbags weighting them are to be done in low reps.  This is serious strength training, and should be mixed in with a program that also includes higher-rep power training.

Situps can be done with workout sandbags also.  Be sure to use some sort of lower back support.  Even if you just use a small pillow, be sure to support the curve in your lower back.  Just sit on the mat, pick up a sandbag, hold it

training sandbags situps

with your arms underneath it, under your chin, and do situps. Again, this is for low-rep strength training.

Stair climbing is one of the best leg exercises you can do.  With workout sandbags, it becomes a total body exercise.  This is because holding the bag on

exercise sandbags stair climbing

one shoulder forces the core's stabilizer muscles to balance the offbalance load.  Do first one shoulder, then the other.

Another great leg exercise is the stepup.  The picture has me stepping up from one porch to another.  But there is another way to do it, that is even better.  I call it the giant stepover. To do a giant stepover,

stepups with fitness sandbags

step over either a chair seat or better yet a plyometric box.  The height of the stepover is up to you.  The benefit of the giant stepover is that it works the backside of your legs going up and the frontside of your legs coming down.  If using a chair, be sure it is sturdy.  Also, alternate which leg does the stepping, and which shoulder carries the bags.

All of these exercises are pictured with me at home using a small bag.  If you can use a medium or larger bag to do them, congratulations.  I sold my barbells and dumbells 7 years ago.  My workout time is valuable, and I want to use it to do the best exercises I can.  For that reason, sandbags are the way to go for me.  They are safer, quieter, more compact, portable, but best of all, much more effective.

Here are our workout sandbags.