Really, you need another gift guide? Well…

I often hear about or see fitness and movement related paraphernalia (wow- I don’t think I’ve ever spelled that word before- it’s not easy… thanks, spell check) and I wonder why anyone would ever buy that stuff. Like things that look like logs that someone attached handles to, and I think, why not just get a log, and attach handles to it?

However,  I realize that sometimes, people want to buy things for people they love. And they want to buy useful things, that are related to activities that those beloved people like to do. For example, people who like to take photos in the cold might want…ummm…warm boots for their tripods…I don’t know.

Anyway, some exercise related gadgets.

Note- I have recently signed up for affiliate links. Haven’t made any money from it yet, but you should know that if you click and buy with one of these links, I’ll make a little money. I don’t know how little…I’m keeping my day job.

Pull-up bars

I got this one last year- I had great plans to be able to do actual pull-ups by now.  I can’t. Yet. I do hang in the doorway when my coffee is brewing in the morning.It helps stretch out my back- it feels so good. Also, building grip strength is a good thing. I liked this model because it is relatively permanent and sturdy. It screws into the studs. Maybe not the best idea for rentals…



Really nice yoga mat

My husband scored big points when he saw that I had been pricing mats, and went ahead and ordered one for my birthday.  This has very dense foam, it is sticky even when I get sweaty, and it stretches.  It is also heavy, which some people could see as a negative for portability, but I am choosing to bright-side it and say that it helps build strength. If you notice your beloved is liking yoga, and the one from the discount store is losing chunks of foam, this might be a good gift.

Yoga blocks, straps and bolsters

These are great for supporting you while you are gaining flexibility. You know how people say, “I can’t do yoga, I can’t even touch my toes!” These tools help bring your toes closer, so you feel supported even while building flexibility.



This is the piece of paraphernalia that started the conversation about gifts- at lunch before Christmas, one of my colleagues was telling me that his son has requested one of these and to fling around. The Vipr is a heavy tube, with handles that can be lifted and swung, to build muscles in a different way than dumbbells or barbells do. Again, why not just get a log? But I get it, people like to buy presents.



This item came up at the same lunch discussion- if you ever thought you wanted to go medieval on someone, well, here’s your chance. It is a weight training, grip-strength-building, crazy work of art.  (Jeff, if you are reading this, I totally don’t want one… seriously, nope, not being passive about it, totally do not get me a mace for Valentine’s day. Just dinner will be fine. And chocolate.)

Hula hoop

I have taken some hoop dance workshops, and there are videos online. It is so much fun to just play, and it is really good for both concentration and ab work.  There are heavy ones that help you harness the power of physics to get them going around your waist, and they are a fun way to add more movement into your life.


Very thin and light ones are fun to dance with, and aren’t as scary to do tricks with like bending backwards and rolling them across your chest.  Much easier on the nose than a heavy one.


These are all ideas to play with- infuse more movement and strength into people’s lives. Please, please, please don’t use gifts like these to “fix” someone.  However, if the person you love already loves to move, consider these toys to change things up.

Oooorrrr… what if the person would really appreciate the gift of time? A sitter to take care of the kids guilt- free while they work out? A hike together? An afternoon of kayaking? Sometimes, people don’t need more stuff to work out with, just time and company.


Leave a Reply