June 20, 2023
5 Reasons to Add the Strongman Sandbag to Your Training
Sandbags are like the unsung heroes of the fitness world. I gotta say, I’ve fallen in love with them lately. I’m specifically referring to the strongman sandbag that looks like big round sacks.
At the moment, I’m incorporating at least three sandbag workouts a week in my training. I added a video of one of the workouts below.
If we’re talking about functional fitness (training that prepares you for everyday life), I’m not sure there’s another fitness discipline that meets that definition better. Think about it, you’re lifting an odd object off the floor, carrying it in different positions, putting it overhead – the things we do in the normal course of a day. The last time you had to pick something off the floor and carry it (outside of the gym, of course), did it look more like a barbell or a sandbag?
The sandbags I use weigh anywhere between 50 and 200 lbs, but you can definitely go lighter or heavier depending on your preference. Just like any gym equipment, it's good to have a few different weight options to structure your sandbag workouts effectively. Some days, you might go for a lighter sandbag and do a longer, moderate workout for conditioning. On other days, you might go for a shorter, more intense workout with a heavier bag. Both approaches have their benefits, so if you're incorporating sandbag training into your routine, make sure to mix it up with different weights.
Why train with the sandbag?
- Strongman sandbag training emphasizes functional strength, as it involves lifting, carrying, and manipulating heavy and awkward objects. This type of training engages multiple muscle groups simultaneously, mimicking real-life movements and enhancing overall strength and power.
(CrossFit workouts, for example, often include similar functional movements, such as cleans, snatches, and carries, so sandbag training can directly transfer to improved performance in these exercises.)
- Sandbag training can be highly demanding on cardiovascular fitness and muscular endurance. The combination of heavy lifting, dynamic movements, and the unstable nature of the sandbag challenges both the aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. This improves overall conditioning, allowing athletes to perform better in high-intensity workouts commonly found in most sports.
- Strongman sandbag training requires athletes to push through discomfort and fatigue. The unpredictable nature of the sandbag, along with its challenging weight, can test an athlete’s mental toughness and resilience. This mental fortitude translates well not just to sports, but to life in general.
- Sandbag training engages multiple muscle groups simultaneously, providing a full-body workout. It can challenge your upper body, lower body, and core muscles in various movement patterns, leading to great overall strength and muscle development.
- Introducing sandbag training into your fitness routine adds variety and excitement. It breaks the monotony of traditional weightlifting exercises and injects a sense of adventure and playfulness into training sessions. This can help athletes stay motivated, engaged, and enjoy the training process, which can ultimately lead to better performance.
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