The Sandbag Workout Part 1

I’ve been trying new things with my workouts and my sister introduced me to the sandbag. At first it was difficult to maneuver and the constant shifting of the sand was very frustrating. I didn’t like it initially but as my body learned how to adjust to the changes of center of mass, I realized how awesome the sandbag was!

3 reasons why the sandbag is awesome

1. Cost effective

Making your own sandbag is relatively cheap and easy to use compared to some fitness equipment out there. My sister, Elisa initially bought the liners from Muscle Driver USA ($20 each) but the day after she used it, the sand was spilling out of it. It didn’t help that she threw the bag down on the concrete that day, but it doesn’t excuse the fact that it started leaking sand after the first workout! Instead of replacing the bags, Elisa went to Home Depot and bought some contractor bags and filled it with sand. Altogether it cost about $11 for the liners.

In the picture below, you can see that she put the sand in the bags and neatly taped it up with duct tape. 2 years and many workouts later, no leaky sand from the home made liner.


Elisa made 3 of these liners, each weight approximately 20-35lbs.  When there are only 2 liners in the bag, she fills it with old clothing to prevent the liners from moving too much.

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2. Portability

You can use the sandbag virtually anywhere! You can use it in your backyard, at the park, the beach or even in your living room.

3. Functional

The sandbag allows you to take simple movements like the squat or lunge and challenge your stabilizers on another level. The ever-changing movement of the sand within the sandbag requires your muscles to react and fight with every lift. If we live life in 3D, why would we limit our selves in single planar movements? It only makes sense for us to train and work in multiple planes.  The sandbag is a great adjunct to barbell lifting, kettle bell lifting and general weightlifting to unleash power. If you’ve ever gotten to a point in your training where you’ve hit a plateau and can’t seem to get over that hump, diversifying your training with the sandbag can help you get there.

Sample Workout #1

Do each movement 10x and repeat for 4-5 sets.


After Elisa sprained her AC joint, she has been quite hesitent to perform cleans with the barbell. This variation of the clean allows her to go through the full range of motion without compromising her AC joint.

Single Leg Deadlift

Bulgarian Split Squat

Stay tuned for more exercises with the sandbag and Elisa! 


Jessie Wong, Physiotherapist from the Physio Room


*The exercises provided on this website are for educational purposes only, and are not to be interpreted as a recommendation for a specific treatment plan, or course of action. Exercise is not without its risks, and this or any other exercise program may result in injury. They include but are not limited to: risk of injury, aggravation of a pre-existing condition, or adverse effect of over-exertion such as muscle strain, abnormal blood pressure, fainting, disorders of heartbeat, and very rare instances of heart attack.

To reduce the risk of injury, before beginning this or any exercise program, please consult a healthcare provider for appropriate exercise prescription and safety precautions. The exercise instruction and advice presented are in no way intended as a substitute for medical consultation. We disclaim any liability from and in connection with this program. As with any exercise program, if at any point during your workout you begin to feel faint, dizzy, or have physical discomfort, you should stop immediately and consult a physician.