Top 15 Christmas Gifts For Fitness Lovers

Having trouble picking out gifts for your fitness lovers? Imagine knocking their gifts out of the park! Let me help with todays article and video!

I am traveling to 3 popular stores to show you the top 15 Christmas gifts to get for your secret Santa! We’re not stopping there, I am guiding you through online gift shopping for this holiday season!

I took a poll on the gym’s social media page (@Ironstrengthandconditioning) and in the gym with my clients to come up with the top 15 gift ideas they desire for this Christmas!

Let’s get to the real reason you came here; the 15 items!


#1 Massage guns

Massage guns are an amazing gift idea that can help reduce muscle soreness and stiffness from sitting all day or working out. Here’s the only downfall… They get EXPENSIVE. This is why I take you to TJ Maxx to help you find the best bang for your buck!

#2 Workout bands

This is a great option because it is very versatile. You can use bands for stretching, strength training and much more! It is worth noting that closed bands were more asked for than bands with handles.

#3 Workout belts

A good workout belt is vital in any serious lifters bag! These in the video are great options but if you have a serious powerlifter then you may want to look at 11mm or 13mm powerlifting belts. Belts may be a good one to ask them about because some people are picky.

#4 Subscription Boxes

These are such fun gifts! I get a monthly box from Iron Crate , It feels like Christmas every month when my subscription box comes in! They always bring great items I can use in the gym such as wrist wraps, shaker bottles, protein snacks, workouts and more! They even make cool themes each month! Use code “IRON30” at checkout for 30% off your 1st subscription box!

#5 Wrist wraps

I have a lot of younger athletes that ask about these in the gym. I think they can be a useful tool to help do more weight on certain exercises when your grip starts to give. It can be found in most lifters bags!

#6 Dip belts

If you have someone that likes to do pull ups, dips and other body weight exercises then you can’t go wrong with a dip belt to add more weight. If they cant do pull ups or dips yet then this may not be a useful gift right away.

#7 Knee sleeves

These are such a great gift for serious lifters. Powerlifters, CrossFit and anyone that does a lot of leg days will love them! These will keep the joint warm through their leg day to help increase performance! 

#8 Yoga mat

Great for those who do a lot of home workouts, ab workouts and yoga! You may want to get a slightly thicker mat if they are using it for exercise. If they are doing yoga then you can use more of a thin mat!

#9 Dumbbells

This is a great piece of equipment to have in the house. If you have a home gym then people typically like to get adjustable dumbbells to save space unless they have enough space for more. 

#10 Fitness trackers

The amount of people that have these now are crazy! If you are looking for one for your loved ones or friends then this can be a great tool to help them track some of their journey and keep them accountable.

#11 Supplements

This is a tricky one but if you know what brand and what supplements they use then you should be all good! If they are a beginner and wanting to try something for the 1st time then you may want to reach out to someone for guidance. A good starting point is typically a good protein powder, BCAAs, creatine and a good multivitamin.

#12 Meal prep container

This is good for the fitness lovers that really track their meals and always take food with them. It can also be a motivator if they don’t because it’s a new gift and people want to use new gifts!

#13 Bottles

Bottles are a necessity for fitness and nutrition. Shaker bottles, blenders and water bottles all play a big role. In the video, I explain in further detail about what bottle may be the best fit for you!

#14 Bluetooth headphones

These are a game changer and I was late to the party when I invested in bluetooth headphones. With normal headphones, the cord is cold at first if you put it in your shirt and if you leave it out and dangling, it’s always getting caught on stuff in the gym. Having cordless bluetooth headphones will save frustrations and those embarrassing moments when your headphones unplug and your Taylor Swift starts playing out loud.

#15 Fitness games

This was a unique one and really has caught on in the last few years. When I first saw these, I wasn’t impressed but now I have them on my wish list to switch it up and have some fun!


Well, that’s a wrap on our Top 15 Christmas Gifts For Fitness Lovers! I hope this helps! If you have questions, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to help! 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

-Alex Costa-

Arm Blaster Review

Today I am bringing you a review over a popular product in the fitness industry. The arm blaster is a fun tool you can use on arm day, watch todays video and see what you think about this product!

Hope everyone is having a great Monday!
-Alex Costa-

Safety Squat (Yoke) Bar

Safety Squat (Yoke) Bar         hbs

 

The safety squat bar can be a good tool to use. Unfortunately I have seen many people in the gym use the bar incorrectly or just not know what it is for. I am hoping that this post will help you gain a better understanding on how you can start using this bar today.

First off, if you are new to lifting and squatting then I would not recommend the safety squat bar to start off with. The main reason for this is because that when you get underneath this bar compared to a normal olympic bar you will notice a couple differences.

  1. A safety squat bar tends to be about 60-70 lbs as where a standard olympic bar is 45lb.
  2. The safety squat bar will load up your anterior chain where a normal back squat will load more of your posterior chain.

Lets talk about some of the benefits that the Yoke bar can give you, shall we?

 

Increases deadlift

On the other hand, if you have some experience then I would throw this into the mix. This can be a good tool if your deadlift is lagging and you need to bring it up. The reasoning for this is because of how this bar front loads your body. The posterior chain will have to really work to help stabilize everything. This will help build the leg strength transferring into the ground as well as increase the strength of the back because your back is trying to hold up the load as you descend into the squat. As most of us may know, a strong posterior chain (hamstrings, glutes, back) will really skyrocket your deadlift.

 

Great for athletes & powerlifters

If you are a powerlifter or athlete then this is right up your alley, with it being a good tool to add strength. Of course if you are not one of these and just are a gym goer that is looking to switch it up then have at it! Athletes need to have a strong core, hamstrings, glutes and back to be a more powerful athlete. When you are a more powerful athlete then you have a better chance of having the upper hand on your opponent.

 

Fights around injuries

One point that I have not yet mentioned but is a very solid point about this bar is that it can work around injuries! What I mean by this is that you can still squat if you have an upper body injury depending on what the injury may be. As an athlete plays through the season, injuries are always possible during season and even off season. With this bar, you can fit underneath the pad and still perform a squat. This can be extremely beneficial because you can still strength train to a certain degree (always check with your athletic trainer). If you have tight deltoids and pectoralis muscles then getting underneath a straight bar to take some squats can be stressful on those muscles and joints. This bar has the handles that you can hold on to during your squat which in turn will take the excess stress off of the shoulders.

 

Quad dominate

As I have mentioned in some of the article above, this will front load your body. This means that this will increase activation of the anterior chain like the quadriceps. The quads will really be working hard in this movement due to the stress placed upon them. Branch Warren, a pro bodybuilder says that this bar is one of the greatest tools he’s ever used to develop his thighs.

 

Numerous exercises you can do with this bar

A unique thing about this bar is that it has a spot to place your head and neck into the pad. On the sides of the pad, there are handles so you can hold onto the bar and keep it stable. With the handles being there, this opens up this bar to more exercises than just a safety bar squat. There are more things you can use the bar for like the list of the following:

  • Lunges
  • Back extensions
  • Split Squat
  • Box squats
  • Good mornings
  • Use suspended chains on this bar a lot easier

ssb lunge

This is why a powerlifter would love this bar. These are some of the more common uses of this bar as a powerlifter.

 

In conclusion

This bar is a useful tool for any gym. Although it stands out for athletes and powerlifters, anyone can try it out and I definitely recommend it! It is always fun to try something new in the gym, this bar may help you in more ways than I posted in this article. With  that being said, I hope you enjoyed this article and find this helpful. If you use the safety squat bar for anything else or know other benefits of this bar then comment below and let me know!   

 

 

Resources:

http://primalstrengthcamp.com/why-you-should-be-squatting-with-a-safety-squat-bar/

http://www.muscleandfitness.com/workouts/leg-exercises/safety-bar-squats-jacked-quads

http://www.stack.com/a/why-every-gym-should-have-a-safety-squat-bar

Pictures: lunges