These are power players when it comes to strength. You can use this exercise tool for a more concentrated, focused workout. Resistance bands can help improve your balance, help decrease joint pains that might be caused by weight-lifting, and help increase flexibility and mobility. Using a resistance band decreases risk of injury, because instead of using free-hand weights, your own body becomes the exercise equipment. Resistance bands are great for getting a deep stretch, too!
2. Foam Roller
Most commonly used to release tension in back and legs, foam rollers be recommended by your chiropractor or general physician as a way to relieve chronic pain in specific areas. Using a foam roller will also help release lactic acids in your muscles, which is great for loosening up your body pre-workout.
3. Gym Ball
Everyone has seen these standard gym balls. Aside from being impossible to resist for bouncing purposes, they’re also great for core workouts. You can sub in your gym ball for sit-ups, crunches, and back stretches. Adding the gym ball into your core workout will also increase your balance and stability, increasing the intensity level of your exercise.
4. Jump Rope
Channel your inner kid (or Rocky Balboa) with this classic childhood relic. Rocky had the right idea—jumping rope is a great cardio exercise, and can either be a high or low intensity workout. It’s a great full body exercise, and improves your balance and coordination.
5. Yoga Mat
Besides your morning sun salutations, owning a yoga mat comes with several other benefits. Not only can you use it for at-home Pilates, but it’s also great for back support during floor exercises and supplies grip for more strenuous physical movements, like planks and pushups. The cushioning of a yoga mat is also ideal for sit-ups! It’s also a great tool for pre- and post-workout stretching.