5 Household Items You Can Use As Weights For Home Workouts

With Singapore’s circuit breaker lockdown period temporarily shutting exercise facilities like weight gyms, swimming pools, Muay Thai gyms, boxing gyms, BJJ schools, and yoga studios, we’ve had to revert to doing home workouts for our daily exercise.

But who says you need to be at the gym to get a great workout? You may not realize it now but, seemingly normal household items that pretty much everyone has available to them can be used for your exercise routines. You just have to think outside the box, use your imagination, and make a few modifications.

Practice social distancing. Stay at home and stay indoors. And use these makeshift pieces of “gym equipment” for your resistance training. We’ve come up with a short list of ordinary items at home that you can try for your next workout.

Today, Evolve Daily shares five makeshift training weights you can craft out of ordinary items at home.


1) Rice Bag

Home Quarantine Rice Bag Workout

Multiple-time Muay Thai World Champion Nong-O Gaiyanghadao from the EVOLVE Fight Team demonstrates how to get a full-body workout using a rice bag! #StayHome

Posted by Evolve MMA on Saturday, April 25, 2020

Rice bags are perfect replacements for any exercise you would use a dumbbell, barbell, or kettlebell for. Rice bags can be found in many different weights and sizes, anywhere from a few hundred grams to 30 kg or more!

A benefit of using rice bags instead of dumbbells or kettlebells is that with rice bags being soft, if you drop them on the floor, you won’t need to worry about cracking your tiles.

The concept of working out with rice bags is obvious. Grab them by the handles and use them as you would a regular barbell/dumbbell/kettlebell. As the video above demonstrates, you can get a full-body workout with nothing but the rice bag.


2) Soup Cans/Water Bottles

If you’re a fan of training with small hand weights, let’s say while doing cardio perhaps, or even while shadowboxing, soup cans (or any canned goods) can be used as alternatives. You can also fill up empty water bottles, and they will have the same effect.

The video above details a few workouts you can do with hand weights. As you can see, there are so many compound movements and a variety of exercises you can perform just with hand weights.

Hand weights are great to tone and shape the arms, as well as add a little bit of resistance to your cardio.

Try to pick out some cans that you can grip comfortably with one hand. Don’t use cans that are too big to hold, because you might drop them. As for the empty water bottles, you can fill them up with just plain water, or sand if it’s available.


3) Laundry Detergent Bottles

If you miss using kettlebells, you can fill empty laundry detergent bottles up with water or sand, and you’ll have something much similar.

Kettlebell workouts are amazing and incredibly effective, as they stimulate many muscle groups and are a perfect complement to your cardio workouts. They not only get your heart pumping, but also increase your strength, your speed, and work on your endurance all at once. Kettlebell workouts help give you great conditioning workouts in a short amount of time.

Workouts are designed for fast, explosive movements performed quickly with minimal rest, much like those found in High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts.

If your goal is to burn fat, increase calorie expenditure, and develop strong, lean muscles, then using laundry detergent bottles is a great alternative for kettlebells. Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.


4) Backpack

Did you know that you could make a weighted vest out of your ordinary backpacks? Just fill it up with random things to make it heavy but comfortable enough to carry around, and you have yourself a terrific makeshift training tool.

One great backpack exercise you can do is weighted squats. Everyone who has ever done a squat knows how effective it is to really strengthen and tone your lower body. It directly engages your quadriceps, glutes, and hamstrings. It also works on the stabilizer muscles in your core. Squats are already tough to do, but adding resistance to the exercise takes it to a whole different level.

But apart from squats, the weighted backpack offers so much more in terms of versatility in your workouts. Check out the video above for more ideas.


5) Five Gallon Water Jugs

Last but not least, empty five gallon water jugs can be a great substitute for heavier weights.

They are already extremely heavy on their own and require quite a bit of strength to pick up. But if you can handle it, these water jugs offer a diverse set of home workouts that will truly push you to the limit.

If five gallons is too heavy for you, you can opt for the smaller one gallon jugs that are typically used for milk or juice. The concept remains the same, fill them up with water or sand, and use accordingly. They are excellent alternatives to traditional weights.

The bottom line is that water jugs are probably the most versatile of the makeshift home equipment.

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