Sandbag Training

Are you ready for a new challenge?  Do you feel like your strength sessions at the gym are not translating to results on the field?  Or would you just like to avoid the gym all together?

Sandbag training may be the answer you’re looking for.  Sandbag training is a challenging way to strength train.  The concept is simple:  swap dumbbells for sandbags.  Though the initial idea of sandbag training is straight forward, this method of exercise has it’s own unique set of challenges and advantages.

sandbag training

What makes sandbag training special?

Sandbag training is very affordable.  Would you like to workout at home but you have a small budget?   Avoid buying expensive dumbbells and benches by training with sandbags.  To get started all you need is a duffel bag, some builders’ sand and a few garbage bags.

You can progress an exercise without adding weight.  In traditional weightlifting when you want to increase the difficulty of an exercise you add weight.  Sandbag training gives you other options.  Of course you could choose to use a heavier sandbag but there are more nuanced ways to progress sandbag exercises.  For example, you could change the way you hold the bag.  You may start squating with the bag held close to your chest but as you get better at the exercise you could hold the bag on one shoulder to challenge you balance and core stability.

Sandbag training is very functional.  The term “functional exercise”  is one of the most over used in the fitness industry.  However in the case of sandbag training the shoe fits.  Think about it;  how often in real life do you have to pick up an awkward object.  By training with sandbags you can become better at this task.  Sandbag training will help you become better at lifting your luggage, your children, and your golf bag.

 Start sandbag training

Are you ready to mix up your strength training routine?  Here are two sandbag exercise to get you started.

Sandbag bear hug squat

  1. Grip your sandbag in a bear hug so it rests high on the chest.
  2. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, core taught and chest proud.
  3. Inhale, bend your knees and flex the hips as you lower your seat back and down until you thighs are at least parallel with the floor.
  4. Exhale, keep your torso stiff and upright as you press the feet into the ground, extending knees and hips until you are standing again.

Sandbag floor press

  1. Lay down on the floor, on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Place the sandbag across the hips and then bridge your hips to lift  up the bag, place it onto your chest.
  3. Firmly grip of the sandbag from underneath
  4. Exhale, press the bag up over your chest until your arms are fully extended.
  5. Inhale, lower the bag back down toward the chest with control.

Sandbag training is an affordable and challenging way to get a full body workout.  In addition to these two exercises you can use sandbags for lunges, overhead presses, deadlifts and rows.  The combinations are endless!


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