During the initial COVID-19 panic, lots of gym-goers stocked up on at-home workouts equipment like dumbbells, kettlebells, and resistance bands. Not everyone was so assertive, or lucky, and might have missed out! Some faced dwindling stock levels, but others simply don’t have room in their homes for this kind of gear. And now, nearly a year later, there’s a new wave of at-home fitness for new year’s resolutions.
But hey, as personal trainers, we are equipped to roll with the punches. We all know they can still get in great workouts! Just by using items they have lying around the house.
If they’re having a hard time doing their at-home workouts because of a lack of equipment, these tips will inspire them to continue working toward their fitness goals.
1. For dumbbells: Water bottles, wine bottles, or canned goods
Like any hiker knows, water is not light. Bottles of water, bottles of wine, and canned goods are some of the best options to consider for everything from weighted lunges to biceps curls. Most people have at least some of them… and if the wine gets drunk, the bottles can be refilled for workout purposes!
If your clients need lighter weights, have them use a couple of small plastic water bottles… or just fill their regular workout bottles!
2. For sliders: Tea towels or paper plates
Your clients might not be able to deadlift a barbell right now, but they can still work their hamstrings by getting creative with hand towels or paper plates. Using these everyday objects as sliders gives them a chance to target their glutes and hamstrings from the comfort of their own home.
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3. For wrist weights: Stacks of silverware
For clients who need light weights, such as those used in barre or pilates classes, a small stack of silverware tied together with a rubber band can provide a sufficient amount of resistance.
Make sure clients are using the same number and type of items in each stack. This will help them ensure they don’t create any imbalances.
Clients can also use these light “weights” for prehab or warm-up exercises. This is an especially good alternative for traditionally banded exercises like external and internal shoulder rotation.
4. For cardio machines: Stairs or the great outdoors
Your clients can’t use being stuck at home as an excuse not to get in their cardio workouts. If they have stairs in their house or in their apartment building, running or walking up them is a great way to get their heart rates up and burn some extra calories.
Encourage them to walk or go for runs outside, too. As long as they practice good social distancing etiquette and don’t get too close to anyone else, there’s no reason why they can’t go outdoors and enjoy the sunshine while exercising.
5. For kettlebells: Kids or pets (!)
Your clients’ kids can actually make great alternatives to kettlebells. If they have a small child they can hold with ease (make sure their child is able to hold their head up on their own first), they can use them as a makeshift kettlebell to do swings, cleans, squats, and other exercises.
This is also a good option for clients who want to get their kids involved in their workouts and need help keeping them entertained during the long days out of school.
No kids? A willing canine or feline can also do the job, or a gallon jug of water. Have them hold the handle of the jug like the handle of a kettlebell for swings and squats.
6. As sandbags: Bags of rice
Finally, if you regularly have clients do a lot of sandbag work, consider having them use another heavy bagged object in place of a sandbag. A bag of rice works great, as does a large bag of dried beans or even pet food. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to stock up on these items in uncertain times!
Using these bags can help your clients work on their core stability. It also allows them to build functional strength.
Inspire your clients with these at-home workout equipment alternatives
Your clients don’t need tons of expensive fitness equipment to get in good at-home workouts. All of these are good alternatives that you can tell your clients about to help them get creative and continue making fitness an essential part of their lives.
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