To say there are 100’s of fitness accessories for those of us who enjoy weight and strength training would be a big understatement. It feels like new kit is being released every single week.
This page lists the top accessories, covering the smaller machines and training aids as well as things like belts, mats and stands. The main equipment is broken out – this is usually worth a separate review – you can find separate sections on the following areas via these links:
Back to accessories; this page lists the best selling add-ons and extras. Some of this equipment is reviewed right here, in which case I have included the links. For other types of training extras a full review is not really needed – in this case you will find a link to the category page over at amazon.co.uk. Remember to check for discounts, the ‘sponsored’ items at the top of many Amazon pages are not always the best value!
#1 – Hand Grip Exercisers:
These are small sprung levers, which you can use to strengthen your lower arm. Just having one lying around will often be enough to get you working on some hard to reach muscle groups. This category also includes bigger sprung devices (for example the Bullworker brand of old) which you can use for shoulder / arm work in general.
These can often be yours for under £10 – check out the category page at amazon for the latest offers.
#2 – Pull Up Bars:
A very popular accessory, all you’ll need to go with it is a door (and some motivation, since pull-ups are often a lot more difficult than the experts make them look). This is another accessory that ‘punches above its weight’, with a lot of value in terms of workouts for a very low price.
If you are looking for a good starting point, then the Powerbar 2 has over 100,000 sales and some solid feedback – though don’t expect to look like the guy in the picture without a lot of effort!
#3 – Foam Rollers:
Don’t be fooled by the bright colours of some of these, using your body weight to stop these tube shaped foam pieces from rolling away can be harder than it looks. These double up as a great way to stretch and warm down after a cardio type workout too.
See this category page for some very large discounts.
#4 – Gym Balls:
Another accessory which will surprise you with its versatility. If you thought of balls for just Pilates and situps, then you’d better rethink. The only downside is that these do take up space, though it is possible to deflate them.
I recommend the popular Reebok gym balls, which (at the time of writing) are at 35% off!
#5 – Belts and Supports:
If you are doing squats, then you’ll need support. This is not an optional accessory, you need to protect your back! Look out for a detailed article very soon here at Fitness Review covering the different types of belt and supports available – I will link to it from here as soon as it is ready. This article over at Bodybuilding.com explains why belts are so important.
#6 – Resistance Bands:
Another quick win for those extra workouts at home. Resistance bands are elasticated strips, with various shapes at the end for your hands and feet. Depending on your goals, you can get bands which provide a lot of resistance. Great for toning up and it is very much possible to use them to build muscle too.
Starting from around £8, resistance bands are a popular accessory – see the latest deals on them on the resistance band category page over at amazon.co.uk now
#7 – Push Up Stands
If you are serious about those pushups, then you really should invest (a very small amount) in some stands. These are plastic (can be metal in there too) discs with handles on them to hold. They ensure that you are in the right posture for push-ups, a quick-win to get maximum benefit.
The most popular push-up stands at amazon.co.uk with top rated feedback are these bargain items from York Fitness – check them out here.
#8 – Suspension Training:
Straps which you can fit to your door to do body-weight suspension type training, for example TRX. Another example of how a reasonably simple weight training accessory will come with a lot of potential benefits and uses.
#9 – PowerBalls:
This is a more recent addition to the must-have accessories list. Power balls are cleverly weighted small balls that you can hold in your hand. The magic is in the way the weight inside them moves. Just the ticket if you want an item of fitness equipment to keep at your desk at work!
The best known power ball brand is the Powerball Signature Series, check out this product page at amazon.co.uk for a full explanation of how they work.
#10 – Ab Rollers
Last (though definitely not least) on my list of must-have weight training accessories is the humble ab roller. I say humble, though there is nothing too humble about the workout this will give you your core and ab muscles. The design is simple, yet elegant – your body weight is the key.