Straight to the Bar

All Things Strength


Review of The Ultimate Sandbag
Written By : Scott Bird

I’ve loved sandbag training since first trying it a couple of years ago; despite my home-made bags not surviving quite as long as I hoped. When Josh gave me the opportunity to test out the latest incarnation of The Ultimate Sandbag, I jumped at the chance. And – as you’ll quickly see – I’m very glad I did.

First Impressions

With any kind of sandbag training, the bag’s going to take a fair bit of abuse. You know it’s not going to be put down gently after each rep, and that you don’t particularly want to be left standing in a pool of sand.
The first thing that struck me is just how well-built these bags are. Not only are they nice and heavy when empty, the sand is kept well away from the outer lining (see the filling section below to see how) and there’s almost no chance of spillage. In fact, there’s a very good chance that you’ll call it a day well before the bag does.

Filling the Bag

The general idea with loading the bag is to fill small, inner bags with sand/gravel and to place these in the main bag. These inner bags are tough, and well sealed using a pair of velcro tabs.
These filler bags are available in a range of sizes, making it simple to add weight to the main bag. Just throw in a 10, 20 or 50lb filler and get to work.

Holding the bag

There are several ways to hold The Ultimate Sandbag, and a number of built-in handles make this extremely natural. In addition to simply putting your hands under the bag itself, handles are available for gripping the bag by the sides, top or bottom.
These handles remain close to the body of the bag, and don’t interfere with training at all.

Using the Bag

There are a number of exercises and variations available with any form of sandbag training; many more than you might think.
In addition to the basic sandbag movements , The Ultimate Sandbag‘s handles enable several further variations. Josh demonstrates a number of them on his site, and there are also several on the High Octane DVD.

Final thoughts on The Ultimate Sandbag

I love this bag; both for indoor and outdoor training. Tough, well-designed and the right size for daily abuse. Just pick it up and get to work. Perfect.

Over to you. Drop us a line on Twitter ( @scottbird ), or add a comment below.



NB : if you love talking about strength-training as much as I do, you might also like to check out the weekly newsletter. A regular dose of fitness-focussed discussions, absolutely free.

And if you'd like to check out any of the stuff mentioned above (or in the comments), swing by Amazon. Huge assortment of fitness gear.


What's This?

Straight to the Bar is the online home of fitness enthusiast Scott Bird, and looks at the many training approaches, essential techniques, uncommon exercises and superb equipment to help you become as strong as humanly possible. In short, this site is the home of all things strength.

images of strength

'Napalm' Jedd Johnson.
Want to see (and learn) more Feats of Strength like this? Dive in.

Just Joined Us? Try These.

There are some incredible writers on the team here. To give you an idea, check these out :

If you enjoyed these, check out the complete ‘Best Of Straight to the Bar‘ list. Fantastic.

setting up a home gym?

If you’re getting ready to put together a solid Home Gym (fantastic thing), here’s how.

For more, swing by the full guide. Absolutely free.

And of course, you’ll find everything you need over in the SttB Strength Store. Massive range.

Ever Tried Kettlebells?

If you’ve seen people using them but never taken the plunge yourself, here are the ones I use personally. You can also pick up a book/DVD/course if you want to learn how to put them to work.

Ready To Learn Even More?

I love learning new skills, and the many seminars & workshops available are a great way to do that. If you’re looking for a specific type of workshop nearby, check out the ones on Dragon Door. Great mix of kettlebell and calisthenics-based offerings.

The Precision Nutrition Certification Program

The Precision Nutrition Certification Program

The Precision Nutrition Certification Program.

If you’re a fitness professional and love the Precision Nutrition approach, check out their certification offering. To say it’s comprehensive is an understatement.

Wherever You Are, We Are.

In addition to the main site, you can share your strength-training passion with a like-minded community on :

Wherever you like to hang out, get your regular dose of strength. Straight to the Bar.

Written By Scott Bird
Scott is a long-time fitness enthusiast (Jan 2004!), writer and photographer living in Sydney, Australia. If you share the passion for spending a bit of time under a bar, welcome. Love hearing how everyone else trains. You can connect via X (Formerly Twitter), Facebook and the various networks listed in the sidebar.
Drawing of Scott Andrew Bird performing a deadlift. Artwork by Vince Palko.