My first job after graduating from University was working at the Post Office headquarters. I had access to gym where a spent a couple of hours most evening pumping iron. In the space of a few months I turned from a skinny graduate to bulked up man! Looking back at those days I wish I had access to more functional training equipment. 

In my opinion functional training is a more sustainable and useful form of training. Furthermore the home gym / functional training combo can turn a standard gym workout into a lifelong fitness endeavour.

There is a wide variety of beginners' functional training equipment for the home. They include barbells, cable machines, dumbbells, and kettlebells. Less conventional gear includes Bosu balls, battle ropes, and ViPR. Functional training exercises ensure your body is prepared and ready for everyday tasks.

Functional training has taken the fitness industry by storm. So investing in the right beginner gear can nurture long-term health. To learn about what functional training is and the best beginner's functional training equipment for the home, read on!

What Is Functional Training?

Functional training goes beyond the average strength or muscle-building (hypertrophy) workout. The difference is in the "why." Instead of training for mass or lower-body power, you'll be targeting the daily tasks you perform throughout the day:

  • Carrying shopping bags
  • Pushing and pulling doors
  • Squatting to pick something up
  • Walking upstairs
  • Getting into (and out of) a car
  • Playing sports (tennis, soccer, basketball)

Squats, lunges, and dead-lifts are prime examples of functional training exercises. Just envision doing these activities without a heavy barbell on your back or dumbbells in your hands, and you'll quickly see why! Squats mimic sitting on the toilet and lunges come in handy when tying your shoes. Dead-lifts are proper "lifting form" for carrying large boxes.

functional training equipment_deadlifts

Compound, Multi-Joint Exercises

With a functional training routine, you'll rarely perform isolation exercises. Unlike targeting one muscle group at a time (like a dumbbell bicep curl). Aside from perhaps lifting a soda can to your lips, curls offer little more than muscular growth in those beloved glamour muscles.

Instead, you'll shift the primary focus to more compound, multi-joint exercises. These get your elbows, wrists, knees, or other joints active, all at the same time. As in the case of medicine ball twists, you're activating nearly every joint in the body while also re-enacting a household task. In that case, the movement is comparable to pulling ingredients from the pantry and placing them on the counter.

Sometimes, the emphasis isn't on a particular muscle group but rather a more generic goal. Core stability, lower-body balance, or full-body flexibility.

Benefits of Functional Training

Functional training and the appropriate gear can build upon your athleticism and nurture health. There is some strong evidence supporting functional training's benefits:

  • Low-impact: Unless you're a dock worker, home-builder, or trash collector, your daily tasks are likely relatively tame. This low-impact training style is gentle on sensitive joints in the rehabilitated, injured, or older adults.
  • Realistic: The leg extension machine can strengthen your quad muscles, but how often will you ever rely on your quads alone? Functional compound exercises better mimic your household chores. So you have enhanced athletic performance when it matters most.
  • Coordination, agility, balance, and stability: Given this newfound focus on how your body moves, you can be more intentional about your activities. That could mean being more mindful about lifting heavy objects (using your knees to lift, not your back!).
  • Lower risk of injury: How many times have you stood up too quickly, reached for a high shelf, or bent-over and felt like you pulled a muscle? By practising those same movements often, you can make those crucial muscles stronger and more flexible.

Loads of Variety

Best of all, functional training can be whatever you make of it. If you suffer from osteoarthritis, a water aerobics class with light dumbbells might be more your speed. What if you are looking for higher intensity workouts? A CrossFit course with box jumps, dead-lifts, and speed ladders will better suit your physical fitness needs.

functional training equipment_variety

But if you'd prefer to do your functional workouts at home and on your own time, you can always create and fill a home gym. Set aside some space in your garage, basement, or spare bedroom, and start filling it with functional fitness gear!

11 Great Functional Training Equipment For Beginners

Some generic gym equipment can double as functional training equipment. It just depends on how you use them. The common theme with functional gear is less rigidity and more freedom to move. The leg curl machine restricts motion to a guided pathway. So use a resistance band for leg curl which requires more hamstring control and stability.

Here's a quick look at 11 of the best functional training equipment for beginners. You'll also find 3-5 functional training exercises, the approximate cost, and a basic overview of each.

Barbells

Barbells, 45-pound (20-kg) weight plates, and spring collars are all staples in any home gym. This versatile 7.2' steel bar can support over 200 pounds or 91 kilograms (in addition to the bar itself — about 45 pounds or 20 kilograms). Classic barbell exercises like bench presses and back squats are so popular that 28+ million people use this traditional gear!

functional training equipment_barbells

But while barbells are the lifeblood of gyms and the pinnacle of strength-building routines, these barbell exercises target functional fitness best:

Barbells are the epitome of functional training equipment. This because they add stable resistance to all full-body exercises, like deadlifts! It's impossible to infuse barbells into your routine without also bolstering core stability and strengthening your left and right sides equally.

They also settle one end of the barbell versus dumbbell debate: Muscle imbalance. Even if you're too weak to carry a 15-pound (7-kg) bag in each hand, piling both bags into a box seemingly lightens the load. Barbells mimic this teamwork by forcing all muscles to work together.

How Much Does It Cost?

Barbells, weight plates, and spring collars are some of the biggest home gym investment. If you have willing to spend $500+, I would recommend buying a carefully crafted bar boasting oxidised steel. The CAP Barbell 300-Pound Olympic Set on Amazon is extremely durable and could last you a lifetime. Alternatively if you have a tighter budget, the below recommended products could be ideal for you.

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Power Systems Studio Pump Set

Overall Rating: 4.8/5

Light commercial grade cardio pump set - priced for the home user!

Features:
Precision, solid-cast core
Rubber plates with hand grips for use as free weights
No-roll plate design
Set includes: (1) Chrome Bar, (2) Power Systems Spring Collars OR Lock-Jaw Collars, (2) 1.25kg, (2) 2.5kg, (2) 5kg rubber plates

ProElite Pump Set w/Lock-Jaw Collars

Overall Rating: 4.7/5

Features:
Durable urethane plates with stainless steel inner ring
Specially designed grip locations for plates to be used on and off the bar
Bevelled edge design to keep the weighted bar from rolling away when not in use
Colour palette provides easy weight identification at a glance
Set includes: 6 plates (pair of 2.5, 5 and 10 lbs.), 51" steel 5 lb. bar, 2x1.25" Lock-Jaw collars.

Body-Solid Tools Fixed Weight EZ Curl Barbells

Overall Rating: 5/5

Body-Solid Fixed-Weight EZ Curl Barbells eliminate the need for weight plates and are a perfect fit for any home and garage gym.

Features:
Available in 10 weight options High-quality weighted steel encased in durable rubber
32mm / 1.26” grip diameter
Set includes: 1 Each of 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 lb. Barbells (5 Total) or 1 Each of 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 110 lb. Barbells (10 Total)

Kettlebells

As the push for functional training equipment approached warp-speed, kettlebells quickly rose in the ranks. These cast-iron steel balls with a near-indestructible exterior share just one handle and look like archaic code locks. With a single or double-hand grip and modest swinging motions, you can fine-tune balance, cardio, and joint strength. The hottest functional kettlebell exercises include:

Kettlebells are a spectacular addition to home gyms. They don't take up much space and have near-unlimited exercise variations. The fitness benefits also far surpass that of dumbbells or barbells. The swinging momentum forces you to stabilise your core to remain balanced and on your toes. And after 15-20 reps, it'll quickly become a true calorie-igniter.

functional training equipment_kettlebells

The latest kettlebell-focused research only amplifies why kettlebells are key functional training equipment for any beginners home gym. This 18th-century era gear can boost cardio fitness by nearly 14% and strengthen the core muscles by an astounding 70%. A rapidly-changing centre of gravity can provide full-body balance on slippery ice or after bumping into a table.

How Much Does It Cost?

Kettlebells tend to be costly because they're not re-loadable (like a classic barbell). This means you'll have to invest in heavier kettlebells as you build strength and confidence. As expected, heavier gear (30 pounds or 14 kilograms) come with heftier price tags. A 3-piece set could cost $50-$100.

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ProsourceFit Adjustable Kettlebell

Overall Rating: 5/5

The weight classes you need all in one kettlebell! The adjustable kettlebell allows you to adjust weight between 10 lb and 40 lb by easily attaching/removing 5 lb disks.

Features:
6 removable weight plates of 5 lb each with 10 lb core
Quick lock feature secures weighted disks in place
Rubber sole to prevent scratches on floor
Heavy-duty cast iron and steel 

KBX Xtreme Training Kettlebells 4-36kg

Overall Rating: 4.8/5

Body-Solid Tools KBX Training Kettlebells are built with durability and performance in mind and feature a matte black chip-resistant powder-coated finish providing superior grip during strenuous workouts.

Features:
Matte black chip-resistant finish
Stylish embossed logo
Easy-to-read weight distinction
Color-coded weight designations

SPRI® Kettlebells

Overall Rating: 4.9/5

The kettlebell has an authentic style hand that allows for a generous grip to eliminate hand pinching. The flat face ball provides comfort and stability when coming in contact with your arm.

Features:
Handles are designed for comfort
Fully vinyl-coated iron
Color-coded weights ranging from 5-50 lbs.

Dumbbells

Every fitness enthusiast's first piece of gear is a light dumbbell set. Over 51 million people use dumbbells to build strength and sculpt a more muscular physique. These 14" (36cm) steel bars fit nicely into one hand, boast deep knurling for better grip, and look like mini barbells. Although curls and triceps kickbacks are standard dumbbell exercises, these are functional-focused:

Affectionately known as "free weights," dumbbells are more than just arm-sculpting machines. These handheld weights also forfeit a barbell's convenience. In doing so, you earn a greater range of motion, less awkward (or uncomfortably rigid) reps, and amplified muscle activation.

This combination mimics daily tasks where stability and strength are situational. An example is lifting a cumbersome jug with one hand to put it on top of the refrigerator. Dumbbells also defeat the glaring barbell pitfall: Overcompensation. A weak left arm can't rely on a strong right arm to take the brunt of the load during bent-over rows (or when keeping a good grip on the dog leash).

How Much Does It Cost?

Pricing a dumbbell set can be challenging because cost depends on weight and material. An adjustable (or re-loadable) dumbbell set supporting up to 55 pounds (25 kilograms) per handle could cost $150. Otherwise, dumbbells typically run $1.50 to $2 per pound for individual bars.

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SPRI Deluxe Rubber Dumbbells

Overall Rating: 5/5

The Deluxe Rubber Dumbbells are quality-engineered, deluxe-grade and built to last a lifetime. Black rubber-encased 8-sided dumbbells with chrome contoured handles.

Features:
Weights ranging from 3 to 25 pounds. Sold in pairs
8 sided and chrome contoured handles

Rubber Coat Hex Dumbbell Sets

Overall Rating: 4.2/5

Durability that can't be matched! Made from cast iron in a hex shape design and encased in virgin rubber. The ends are cast with a through hole to secure to the handle.

Features:
Sets are pairs of Rubber Hex Dumbbells increasing in 5 lb. increments, in groups from 5 to 120 pounds.

Body-Solid Tools Vinyl Dumbbells

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Perfect for a variety of individual and group workouts. No-roll hex-ends allow for easy stacking and convenient storage.

Features:
1-10 lb. Vinyl Pairs Set of 20 or 1-15 lb. Vinyl Pairs Set of 24.

Cable Machines

That monstrosity at the gym — with 2-4 weight stacks, a thick cable, and a handful of attachments — is a cable machine. But these eyesores also come in smaller-scale versions to better compliment a garage home gym. By lodging a pin into a labelled weight stack and grasping your chosen handle, you can rely on cable machines to perform less restricted:

A cable machine's functional fitness benefits are practically unmatched for rookies. It can build foundational strength where even body-weight exercises are too challenging. An example is lightweight lat pull-downs instead of standard pull-ups). And with the sheer range of handles, seats, and heights to choose from, you can transition from upright rows to crossovers in mere seconds.

Cable machines also highlight both eccentric (lengthening) and concentric (contracting) movements. This near-equal focus teaches your muscles stability throughout the entire rep. So like picking up a box, carrying it for a few years, and then placing it down. The rope, V-bar, and stirrup handle selections are bonuses to personalise your workout better.

How Much Does It Cost?

Cable machines might account for ½ to ¾ of your total home gym budget (and space), but it also tackles nearly every exercise. A run-of-the-mill two-stack cable unit will cost about $2,000. However, a more niche rig with just lat pull-down and curl capabilities might be closer to $300.

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Powerline Cable Crossover

Overall Rating: 4/5

High and low pulleys to perform a multitude of functional exercises with compound complex movements.

Features:
Includes two cable handles and one ankle strap. Optional Pull Up Attachment. Dimensions: 37" L x 113" W x 83" H

Best Fitness Functional Trainer

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Adjustable pulleys have 19 vertical positions and swivel 180 degrees to provide a wide variety of starting positions.

Features:
Pulleys swivel 180 degrees Attachment. Single 190lb. weight stack, Integrated Straight Chinning Bar Dimensions: 55" L x 61" W x x 84" H

Balance and Bosu Balls

Once you work through the desire to punt them across your gym, balance and Bosu balls might become your favourite gear. These inflatable 26" (66cm) domed rubber balls supply an uneven squishy platform for your back, feet, or hands. On top of building muscular strength, you'll slowly perform each rep as you try to remain balanced. Nearly any exercise can transfer to Bosu, including:

Although these domed balls are versatile (both sides up), the true allure adds a challenge to even the most simple exercises. When push-ups, crunches, or single-leg squats become too easy or flat-out boring, infusing a Bosu ball can target your muscles and joints in new ways.

But it's the functional fitness aspect that makes balance balls an absolute must-have. By enhancing coordination and precision, you can better respond to unpredictable circumstances. You'll be more comfortable walking on clumpy grass and traversing staircases. The strength gains might lag, but the revived balance (and lower fall risk) is hard to top.

How Much Does It Cost?

Given the high-end construction of brand-name Bosu balls, this balance-saver will cost you about $100 to $150. You can swap the Bosu ball for a classic yoga ball (or stability ball). So it is more like a $20 investment, though the non-domed version requires more balance.

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BOSU® NEXGEN™ Pro Balance Trainer

Overall Rating: 5/5

Functionality Meets Performance! Featuring an updated design for new exercises and usage. Designed for enhanced grip with either hands or feet on the dome.

Features:
Textured markings allow for precise body positioning and cueing. Maximum user weight limit – 350 lbs. Dimensions: Product diameter – 65 cm. or 26”

Bosu ® Home Balance Trainer

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Ideal for basic balance training, core workouts, cardio or full-body workouts. It is designed with six non-slip feet and meant to withstand normal everyday home-usage.

Features:
Latex-free, burst-resistant material. Holds up to 136 kg (300 lbs.) Dimensions: Weight: 18 lbs, Product diameter – 65 cm. or 26”

Bosu Elite Total Balance Trainer

Overall Rating: 5/5

A firm dome designed to spring load your body and intensify core exercises. The new Elite comes with a more rugged high density dome and has a reinforced base for platform side exercises.

Features:
High density, durable, rugged dome for greater force production lbs. Dimensions: Weight: 18 lbs

Exercise (Resistance) Bands

If any functional fitness equipment earns an unfair reputation, it is exercises (or resistance) bands. These 4' long latex rubber tubes — or flat or loop-shaped bands — are self-explanatory and offer up to 150 pounds (68 kilograms) of resistance. Grab the handles (or ends), step onto or lodge the middle into a door attachment, and perform any weighted functional exercise, like:

Exercise bands return convenience to at-home workouts. Most 5-band sets come with carrying bags to keep them from tangling or taking up floor space. But they also allow for a completely custom resistance every time. Widening your stance will shorten the band and activate even more muscle fibres. And some even allow you to double up on bands to add extra pounds.

Affordability and portability aside, resistance bands are a functional fitness dream. With far less restricted movements, you can mimic household chores, like wriggling a filled garbage bag out of the can. But it's the versatility that truly seals the deal. On top of full-body movements like squat presses, reps progressively get harder as you near the top, building strength and power.

How Much Does It Cost?

Resistance bands are among the most affordable home gear for functional training. A 5-piece set offering up to 150 pounds (68 kilograms) of resistance might cost less than $25. Prices generally remain the same whether the set has detachable handles or not, but door attachments cost extra.

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Brazyn Resistance Band Kit

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Lightweight, portable, versatile, and...colourful! Spice up your workout routine with Brazyn bands which are a convenient addition to any home or travel fitness kit.

Features:
15 different resistance combinations. Bands are made from the most reliable, comfortable and durable materials out there.
Set includes: 5 x Latex Bands, 2 x Cushioned Handles, 2 x Ankle Straps, a Door Anchor, Exercise Booklet and the Travel Pouch

SPRI Total Body Resistance Kit

Overall Rating: 3.6/5

Perform any functional-resistance pulley exercises with this simple and unique interchangeable tubing system.

Features:
5 color-coded clip in resistance cords, ranging from very light to ultra heavy. Strong and durable construction, built for repeated use.
Set includes: 5 color-coded clip in resistance cords, 2 resistance cord handles, 1 ankle strap, 1 door attachment and storage bag

Slastix Resistance Bands

Overall Rating: 4.9/5

A durable resistance band that adapts to your training needs. Clips on each end make it easy to use any Stroops attachment for workouts.

Features:
Multiple lengths and resistance levels from light, medium, or heavy.

Plyometric Equipment

"Plyometrics" is your standard fitness buzzword, but only a select few trainees put it to good use. More commonly referred to as "jump training". Plyometrics focuses on explosive lower-body movements like vertical jumping and full-speed sprints. Some examples of plyometric equipment that moonlight as functional training home gear include:

  • Plyometric boxes (particularly for box jumps)
  • Training hurdles
  • Jump ropes

You might be curious about how clearing 2' boxes and a criss-cross jump rope pattern translates to daily life. With more powerful and speedier leg muscles, it might take you just 10 seconds to walk upstairs without developing achy, heavy legs. And on the endurance end, jumping rope is a low-impact activity that makes daily walks and exercises less tiresome.

functional training equipment_jump rope

How Much Does It Cost?

Authentic plyometric gear might cost as little as $40 (for adjustable hurdles) to more than $300 (for a sturdy wooden box). But you can also DIY plyo equipment if you're crafty and have the right materials on-hand (i.e., Wood, screws, and PVC pipe).

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Plyometric Jump Box

Overall Rating: 4.9/5

An easy-to-assemble, 3-in-1 design is versatile for various heights and exercises to improve speed, power, and performance.

Features:
Durable plywood box holds up to 300 lbs. All edges are sanded and rounded for safety, and two cut-out carrying handles make it easy to move around. Comes in 3 sizes: Measurements: 30L x 20W x 24H-inch, 24L x 16W x 20 H-inch, and 16L x 12W x 14H-inch

Raised Agility Ladder

Overall Rating: 3/5

Looking to increase your speed and agility in your athletic performance? The ProsourceFit Raised Agility Ladder is designed for high step footwork training, speed drills and cardio workouts.

Features:
6 collapsible 4” hurdles transition to flat ladder for more diverse workout Measurements: Elevated measurements: 84” L x 18.75”W 3.5”H; Flat measurements: 84” L x 25 3/4”W x 1/2”H

Body-Solid Tools Cable Speed Rope

Overall Rating: 4.1/5

Durable rope uses sealed ball bearings for unsurpassed rotation. The comfortable handle allows you to perform double and triple-unders unlike any other jump rope on the market.

Features:
Adjustable up to 9’ 6”    Sealed bearing pivot Ergonomic handle           Weight: 2 Ibs

Speed Ladders

Speed ladders are an often misunderstood piece of equipment, as the name doesn't necessarily match the activity. They are also effective "agility ladders". The flexible floor squares with adjustable panels are usually 15' long and about 20" (51cm) wide (more than enough to fit both feet). With various footwork patterns as you hop, jump, and skip, a footwork workout might include:

Improving your footwork and agility with speed ladders requires a unique approach. There are many patterns and routines you can try. The video below overviews 15 footwork exercises to try today:

Conventional fitness-wise, nurturing quickness, speed, and agility can directly improve on-field performance. That's precisely why footwork is a staple in football and soccer training sessions. It gives you the ability to dodge an opponent so you can score a goal or evaded tackles.

Besides increasing your heart rate, speed ladders can build upon your coordination and balance. In other words, regular training can help you feel more confident on your feet. These benefits can help you avoid protruding tree branches when you are on a hike. Or stay upright with a cat weaving between your feet, and regain your balance quickly after slipping on water.

How Much Does It Cost?

Speed ladders won't destroy your budget! For less than $30, you can get an entire agility kit — a speed ladder, parachute, cones, exercise guide, and carrying case. Or you can draw boxes on your driveway with chalk for a DIY footwork workout.

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Rigid Rung Ladder

Overall Rating: 5/5

Built to withstand the most aggressive agility workouts. It features bright orange rungs that are easy to see so you never miss a step. Go hard and look good with this classic.

Measurements: 12"W x 12"L Weight: 2 Ibs

Roll Out Ladder

Overall Rating: 3/5

Made of heavy-duty, durable, non-skid rubber, this ladder quickly unrolls and lies flat, then rolls up for easy storage and portability.  The generous ladder area makes it perfect for all ages and ability levels.

Features:
Resists bunching and Stays in place on all indoor and select outdoor surfaces. Quickly unrolls and lies flat. Rolls up for easy storage and portability.  Measurements: 16"W x 180"L (15 ft) x 1/8" Thick. 

Speed Agility Ladder

Overall Rating: 5/5

Perfect for speed drills, foot work, and improving coordination and reaction time. A portable design that allows you to get a heart-pumping workout anywhere.

Features:
Lightweight, roll-up design is compact and travel-friendly. Comes in 3 lengths with flat adjustable rungs Measurements: 4m/8 rungs - 13.1’ (4m) L x 19.7”(50cm) W; 6m/12 rungs - 19.67’ (6m) L x 19.7”(50cm) W; 10m/20 rungs - 32’(10m) L x 19.7”(50cm) W;

Battle Ropes

After the warm-up, you will move on to the high-intensity portion of the workout. This section could have many variations, but it will consist of short bursts of a lot of effort for about 20-45 seconds. This is followed by a short rest or period of low-intensity activity. You might do this for approximately six or eight rounds, depending on the timing of the burst.

Battle ropes are a supreme full-body workout and a necessity in any home gym with horizontal space. Holding a squat as you pound those 30-pound ropes into the ground will ensure a gruelling quad and glute workout. And the harder you slam the ropes down with each rep, the more you're activating your upper body muscles and joints (elbows, wrists, and shoulders).

The battle ropes are remarkably self-explanatory, but did you know there are dozens of patterns and movements? The video below reviews 22 unique battle rope movements for all skill levels:

But on top of being a reliable calorie-torcher, battle ropes target movements rarely touched upon in the gym. With a unique whipping and slapping concoction, you can strengthen the muscles that help you do things like chop firewood or shovel snow. Just 60 to 120 seconds a day can build your cardiovascular endurance to make yard work or walking around the office easier.

How Much Does It Cost?

Weighted battle ropes, wall anchors, and appropriate screws will cost you a decent sum. Most authentic 1.5" (4cm) thick, 50" (127cm) long ropes sell for $50 to $100. An additional anchor strap to prevent excessive wear and tear or fraying will add about $15 to your subtotal.

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Son Of The Beast

Overall Rating: 4.9/5

The Son of The Beast is the improved spawn of Stroops original elastic battle rope, The Beast. The PRO kit comes with two ropes with handles on each end and a belt.

Set includes: A pair of 10 foot Slastix battle ropes, Power Pull Belt, two Carabiners, two Cloth Anchors,
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Battle Rope ST®

Overall Rating: 5/5

Two great training methods in one awesome system! This unique system combines Body Weight Strength Training and Battle Rope training in ONE fun, engaging and effective workout! The BRST handles are 6lbs. each so we were able to cut the length of the rope in HALF!

Set includes: 6 lb. handles, 10′ rope, 1.25 inch static nylon braided rope

Power Training Rope 2"

Overall Rating: 3/5

These 2" diameter ropes come in two colours and three lengths to accommodate a wide range of fitness levels. Rope anchors and hanger available.

Features:
2 inch diameter and rubber grip. Choose from 30’, 40’, or 50’ lengths

Suspension Trainers

Suspension trainers don't look like much but the opportunities are endless (even for beginners). These heavy-duty straps attach to a sturdy, permanent object, like a pull-up bar, tree, door frame, or ceiling hooks. Just grasp onto the dangling handles as you work against gravity to strengthen your muscles. Essential suspension trainer exercises include:

Despite the borderline-acrobatic appearance, suspension training straps have unlimited potential. For example, chest flies can better isolate the chest muscles for a brutal upper-body workout. An incline push-ups are better-suited for starter strength in the chest. And because you'll almost always be at an angle and balancing yourself, core stabilisation is an ongoing need.

Working against gravity helps nurture flexibility, balance, muscular endurance, and coordination. Whether you're hanging from or propping yourself up on those handles, you can improve daily task performance. That includes pulling doors open (inverted rows), getting out of bed (crunches), and tying your shoes (lunges). For this reason they should be one of your first purchases of functional training equipment.

How Much Does It Cost?

Since most suspension trainers attach to an already-existent tree, pull-up bar, or door frame, your only expense is the strap itself. Suspension training straps typically cost between $50 (for a standard kit) and $200 (for an official TRX model).

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Stroops Body-weight Gym

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

The Bodyweight Gym is a Slastix driven suspension trainer. The built-in Slastix increase your muscular stability by letting you train functional movements in an unstable environment. The Slastix can be removed when you want to train in a more stable environment.

Set includes:
Removable Slastix attachments, 2 independant attachment points

TRX PRO3

Overall Rating: 4.8/5

The PRO3 System is used by Professional Trainers, Pro Athletes, Olympians, and Fitness Pros worldwide. It is made with the highest grade webbing, extra-durable components, and commercial grade materials.

Set includes:
PRO3 Suspension Trainer, 3 Suspension Anchors, Durable Textured Rubber Grip Handles, Padded Foot Cradles

Recoil S2 Pro

Overall Rating: 5/5

RECOIL S2 has the largest primary adjustment range on the market. The straps can be adjusted all the way from head to toe and everywhere in between. Around double the range of other Suspension Training Systems, enabling you to perform more exercises than ever before.

Set includes:
Lashing strap, User’s Guide, Exercise Guide, Bag/Door Mount and Recoil Mount

Final Thoughts

A home gym stocked with functional training equipment can leave you with no excuses not to exercise. However, the only way to enhance your strength, balance, and flexibility through training is by putting your flashy new gear to good use.

Create a full-body functional fitness routine that you can repeat once or twice a week. But don't side line your other exercise goals (like running a sub-30-minute 5K or increasing your bench press by 50 pounds or 23 kilograms). Most of your functional training equipment — like barbells and jump ropes — can nurture these other goals too!

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