The Best Portable Exercise Equipment

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Whether you live in a small apartment and don’t have room for full-size gym equipment, or you need to stay in shape while traveling, you have plenty of options when it comes to portable exercise equipment. Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for adults, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity five days a week.

Exercise Ball

Exercise balls are excellent portable fitness tools, according to the Mayo Clinic. They are sometimes referred to as stability balls, and they come in various sizes –- the ideal size ball for you puts your knees at a 90-degree angle when you are sitting on it. You can get an effective core body workout using an exercise ball, and hundreds of exercises are available for targeting your muscles. You can deflate and inflate exercise balls for maximum portability.

Ab Wheel

An ab wheel not only exercises your muscles but also helps to tone your arms, shoulders and chest muscles. An ab wheel is a small, inexpensive piece of exercise equipment that you can use just about anywhere. Certified strength and conditioning specialist Jim Bathurst of states that the ab wheel is a simple and effective training device that helps improve your balance, strength and stability.

Stair stepper machines are great fitness tools, but they are rather large. You can purchase a portable version of the larger stair stepper machine that includes two pedals and not much else. These inexpensive alternatives to full-size stair steppers can easily fit under your desk at home or work, and they are small enough to travel with. A stair stepper even provides a convenient way to exercise while you’re watching TV.

Portable Exercise Bike

Much like the portable stair steppers, portable exercise bikes include just the essentials –- two pedals, a resistance wheel and sometimes, a built-in computer. They are small enough to fit beneath your desk or in the trunk of your car for travel. Prices range from $20 for a basic model to $100 for a pedaling machine with a built-in LCD monitor, based on 2011 pricing. These portable fitness tools help to shape and tone your legs.