P90X promises that if you follow the 90-day at-home exercise program, you'll get in the best shape of your life. To do the workouts properly you will need some basic equipment, including dumbbells or resistance bands and a chin-up bar. Beachbody -- the company that markets P90X -- recommends additional equipment that may enhance your performance and results.
Many P90X exercises require some form of weight resistance. Beachbody recommends dumbbells or resistance bands. Resistance bands typically come in a set with bands of different levels from light to heavy. This is your most inexpensive, versatile, portable option.
Some people prefer dumbbells. If your goal is to build mass, dumbbells give you a more accurate way to gradually increase load. You can purchase an entire set of dumbbells, adjustable dumbbells or single dumbbells. What size dumbbells you need depends on your current fitness level and goals. Compared to resistance bands, dumbbells are more expensive and they take up a lot of space to store.
To complete the pull-ups and other back exercises, you will need a chin-up bar. Most bars fit inside a doorway in your home. Some need to be installed by drilling into the door frame, while others do not require hard installation. The latter type can also double as push-up stands for the chest workouts.
Regardless of whether you have carpeted or hardwood floors, you may want to buy a yoga mat. The mat will protect your hardwood floors or save your carpeted floors from being soaked with sweat. A mat will also help absorb shock during plyometric exercises and protect your joints during the P90X yoga and stretching routines.
If you’re not very flexible and can’t use your fingers or hands to support your body during the yoga sequences, you may want to invest in yoga blocks to provide extra support and stability.
Push-up stands elevate you off the floor so your nose doesn't end up in the carpet with every rep. They also put your wrists at a more natural angle to help alleviate pressure on these joints. If you have a removable chin-up bar, you can use that as a push-up stand, or you can purchase the specific equipment.
A heart rate monitor can come in handy during the three months you're doing P90X. You can use it before you even start the program to track your resting heart rate. You can continue to track this during the next 90 days to see how it changes. As you become more fit, you should see your resting heart rate decrease.
Another useful tracking tool is a body-fat tester. Using special calipers, you'll measure your subcutaneous fat -- the fat just beneath the skin -- to determine your percent body fat. As you progress through the program, you should see this change. If you're trying to lose weight, tracking body fat loss can be very rewarding and motivating.