Bjorn Nilsen

The Top Inexpensive Fitness Tools You Need




Some people opt to use stair machines to get an incredible workout. Fortunately, having one of these expensive machines is not necessary to get a good workout. Any set of stairs can provide the same effect as this costly gym machine, and one study done in 2000 showed that doing stair exercises has numerous beneficial results, including better breathing and heart function.


A towel is a great replacement for resistance bands, which can often be a costly addition to workout gear. Using a simple towel in place of one of these bands provides the same effect, but at a much greater convenience and a much lower cost. A towel can be used a wide variety of stretches and exercises.


Perhaps the most underrated everyday exercise tool is the chair. It can be used to perform a vast array of exercises, such as leg and arm workouts.


Foam roller

While this tool is probably not an everyday household item, it can prove to be an invaluable help. It can be used to sooth sore muscles after a workout, or to prepare vulnerable muscles prior to an intense workout.

A rope is a helpful tool in performing some stretches, such as active isolated stretches, which must be performed before intense exercises in order to avoid damaging muscles.


Resistance tubing and bands

Resistance tubes and bands are one of the most inexpensive workout tools, and they are very portable for those who travel a lot. They can used to increase the difficulty of virtually every workout, and they come in various resistances to provide different degrees of difficulty.

Jump rope

Perhaps one of the most old-fashioned and basic ways to exercise is also one of the best. Jumping rope could be a great exercise on its own, but it is also a great way to warm up before a more intense workout, like a sprint or a long run.

Medicine ball

A medicine ball is a cheap way to help build your muscles’ flexibility and strength. They come in sizes from two to 25 pounds, so there is a medicine ball that is the perfect size for virtually every workout buff.

Bosu ball

Even though bosu balls are a little on the expensive side with one ball costing about $100, they are a great exercise tool that can help to improve core muscles, as well as balance.



Kettlebells are specially designed to provide the user with quick, efficient workouts that improve virtually every basic function in the body. A quick workout with kettlebells can get the heart pumping, as well as improve muscle strength and range of motion. Kettle bells are a great solution for people who want to work out, but do not have a lot of extra time.
Measuring tape

Despite the fact that a measuring tape is not necessarily a workout tool, it can provide invaluable insight into the makeup of one’s body and how working out is changing it. It can show how much abdominal fat there is, which is key to ensuring optimal health.


Inexpensive treadmills

While some treadmills cost hundreds of dollars, it is not too difficult to find one at a secondhand store, or to buy a cheap one for $100 or $200. A gently used treadmill can still provide years of great exercises, and there is so much versatility that it would be difficult to pass up such a good deal.

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About Saltstraumen Adventure

Bjorn Nilsen is a personal trainer and adventure tour leader near the Saltstraumen whirlpool in Bodo, Norway. He is the Founder and principal operator of Saltstraumen Adventure, personalized adventure tours for all ages and capabilities.

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Reader comments

"Bjorn are you also a kayaking guide? Also, do you offer nutrition coaching in addition to personal training?"