The 20 Best At-Home Workout Equipment Items to Buy in 2021
2021 is here, which means setting and meeting those New Year’s resolutions — and exercising more is always a fan favorite. Since the start of the pandemic, many of us have shifted our regular fitness routines from the gym to at-home workouts or outdoor activities; and truth be told, at-home workouts are here to stay, especially when half the battle is getting ready to head out to the gym in the first place. Plus, one of the greatest perks of investing in your home gym (or backyard, garage, sidewalk, living room — wherever you like to move at) is that you can handpick workout equipment you actually like to use.
As a personal trainer, I can tell you it’s important to purchase equipment that complements movement you genuinely enjoy and not because it’s the hottest trend. With my own clients, I seek out equipment and accessory pieces that fit their personal health and fitness goals and work lifestyle. Some clients only own dumbbells and resistance bands, while others prefer access to wall balls and step boxes. The common denominator with all these pieces is that you’re able to perform a large range of exercises and they help you get results — be it to lose weight, build muscle, move more, get fit, etc.
Multi-purpose equipment is a key factor to consider as you build your home gym to get the most bang for your buck. Also, you’ll want foundational pieces for your warm-up/activation, workout, and cool down. With that in mind, below are my top 20 picks for the best at-home workout equipment to buy in 2021 that won’t break the bank.
1. Core Training Sliders
Buy It: Celebrita Pair of Gliding Discs Core Sliders, $7.49 at Amazon
Sliders are a great challenge for your stability because they require more focus on core engagement throughout movements. They can be used for a variety of exercises including planks, squats, and push-ups. These lightweight pieces are great for at-home workouts and can be used on multiple surfaces including wood and carpet.
2. Adjustable Jump Rope
Buy It: Mind Reader Adjustable Jump Rope, $16.99 at Lowe’s
Incorporate jump roping into your cardio or HIIT routine to increase your heart rate and improve your cardiovascular health. You can mix up your jump rope routine by focusing on rep count or including timed intervals in your routine for 30 seconds of work and 15 seconds of rest based on your workout goal for the session.
3. Resistance Band Kit
Buy It: Mind Reader Resistance Band Set, $34.99 at Lowe’s
Perform a variety of resistance workouts including bent over back rows to standing kickbacks. You can easily increase the total body work by attaching additional tubes to a handle or door anchor.
4. Fitness Aerobic Step Stepper
Buy It: Adjustable Workout Trainer Exercise Stepper with 4 Risers, $37.99 at Walmart
This is a great piece of equipment to have especially if you’re tight on space. You can use it for traditional step movements, power moves, and also incorporate it as a tool to intensify your strength routine. You can perform a range of movements including squat pop-overs, toe taps, and bulgarian split squats.
5. Fitbit Charge 4
Buy It: Fitbit Charge 4 Rosewood Band, $149.95 at Macy’s
Life can get busy, so stay on track by receiving reminders to move throughout the day, and monitor your sleep patterns at night. If you do choose to venture outside for a run or a swim, you can use the GPS, as well as use it under water. Tracking your overall health and wellness can be beneficial to keeping you consistent and motivated.
6. Double Lacrosse Peanut Massage Ball
Buy It: Peanut Massage Silicon Double Lacrosse Ball, $17.89 at Walmart
Whether it be from a workout or carrying stress in the body, relieving tension can be done with a double lacrosse massage ball. This is especially useful for releasing tight traps, shoulders, back, hip, and glutes.This small self-massage tool works wonders to increase your range of motion and alleviate pain points.
7. Folding Treadmill
Buy It: Superfit 2.25HP 2 in 1 Folding Treadmill, $499.99 at Walmart
The shock-absorbing belt for added cushion for your joints is a major plus for regular runners. For those looking to create better habits without too much fuss, this treadmill provides a more enjoyable experience with its bluetooth speakers and its ability to become an under the desk treadmill. You can get your steps in while you’re on a work call and ensure you’re hitting your step goal for the day!
8. Medicine Ball
Buy It: SPRI Medicine Ball, 8lb, 10lb, 12lb, starting at $25.97 at Walmart
Medicine balls are multi-functional in that you can work on your strength, stability, endurance, and power. Perform upper body exercises like a medicine ball push-up, or a medicine ball burpee for an explosive full body move. Nothing is better than slamming and throwing a medicine ball for fun or stress relief during your workout!
9. Total Gym 7
Buy It: Total Gym XL7 Home Gym with Workout DVDs, $299.98 at Sam’s Club
Build lean muscle and total body strength using your own bodyweight for resistance. This gym set-up is perfect for active users of all levels, and includes a nutrition guide and exercise programs for additional support.
10. Weighted Stability Ball
Buy It: SPRI Weighted Stability 65CM Exercise Ball, $14.88 at Walmart
You can perform a variety of exercises for stretching, mobility, and strength that challenge your core, back, hips, and glutes. A stability ball is great for bodyweight work like a glute bridge, but you can amp up your strength workout by adding weights and perform a glute bridge with a dumbbell chest press. It’s a great piece of equipment for every fitness level.
11. 12lb Slam Ball
Buy It: Yes4All 12lb Slam Ball, $14.41 - $34.99 at Walmart
You can get a total body workout by performing power movements like overhead slams and strength exercises like Russian twists to name a couple. Slam your way to a stronger heart and body.
12. Non-Slip Yoga Foam Blocks
Buy It: Mind Reader Non-Slip Yoga Foam Blocks, $21.99 at Macy’s
While you may think yoga blocks only serve a purpose in yoga, they double up as great pieces for strength training. They can be used to provide support and assistance to increase mobility, and ensure proper form with more advanced movements. For instance, you can use them to increase core engagement with the dead bug exercise or stack them to use them as a visual and physical cue to work on increasing your squat range.
13. Foam Roller
Buy It: Stamina 18" Foam Roller, $8.47 at Walmart
The foam roller is an effective tool to help release trigger points, which are also known as knots. A roller is a valuable recovery piece to release commonly tight areas like the back, hips, and glutes. It can be used before and/or after a workout, and even on “off" days to keep your body functioning at its best. Recovery is key to maintaining a regular workout routine.
14. Exercise Bike Workstation and Standing Desk
Buy It: Wirk Ride Exercise Bike Workstation and Standing Desk, $169.98 at Sam’s Club
Work can come with unpredictable hours, so battle that by pedaling throughout the day to improve your cardio. You can also improve your posture by adjusting your seat to the proper level.
15. Multi-Purpose Bench
Buy It: Marcy Multi-Purpose Bench, $64.98 at Sam’s Club
A multi-purpose bench supports bodyweight and free-weight training. For beginner to intermediate users, a bench is great for support and to ensure quality form. For intermediate and advanced workout enthusiasts, this bench allows for heavier lifts to help tone and strengthen the entire body.
16. Adjustable 25lb Dumbbells
Buy It: 25 lbs Adjustable Dumbbells with Weight Plate, $95 at Walmart
Adjustables dumbbells are especially valuable to have in homes with multiple users. You can create an endless amount of strength routines using traditional strength exercises like an overhead shoulder press and compound movements like a deadlift to high row.
17. Yoga Mat
Buy It: Sivan Yoga Mat, $29.99 at Macy’s
Mats are not only important for yogis, but also those who perform strength workouts. A thicker mat provides for more support to protect knees and joints, which supports more complex and loaded movement. It’s also beneficial to have the added comfort during stretching sessions.
18. Rower Machine
Buy It: FITNESS REALITY 1000 PLUS Magnetic Rowing Machine Rower, $279 at Walmart
Not only do you get a low-impact cardio workout, but the versatility of this rower allows you to perform exercises like curls and shoulder raises, to name a few. You get a total body workout on one machine!
19. 7kg Kettlebell
Buy It: Mind Reader Mind Reader Kettlebell 7 KG, $37.99 at Lowe’s
Create workout flows that help burn fat, tone muscles, and improve heart health. The kettlebell swing is the most well-known exercise to increase your strength and power. You can also interchangeably use a kettlebell for movements you’d traditionally use a dumbbell for like bent over back rows, overhead tricep extensions, and loaded squats, to name a few.
20. EDX 9-piece Full Body Workout Kit
Buy It: DX 9-Piece Full Body Workout Kit, $29.98 at Sam’s Club
These pieces can be utilized interchangeably for cardio, mobility, and strength training. Beginners can start with bodyweight workouts utilizing the mat and increase at their own pace to intensify workouts with a jump rope, resistance loop bands, and ankle weights.