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Whether they recently started working out at home or are lifelong runners, there may be loved ones on your shopping list who would be more than happy to unwrap fitness gear or apparel during the holidays. From equipment like exercise bikes and ankle weights to clothing like leggings and sports bras, there are a plethora of options you can gift to the fitness fanatic in your life. But if you want items to arrive by Christmas, be sure to order soon — many brands and retailers currently list dates on their websites telling you when to order by to ensure gifts get to recipients in time.
To help guide your gift shopping, we rounded up workout gear and apparel ranging from massage guns to sneakers based on our previous reporting and Select reader favorite brands.
The best fitness gifts in 2021
We sourced the gift ideas on this list by consulting our previous reporting and expert guidance. Plus, we included options from Select reader favorite brands and retailers. As a fitness fanatic and runner, I also included some of my favorites purchases for loved ones or gifts that I have been gifted over the years.
Select writer Lauren Levy said she uses this massage gun before and after workouts like Orangetheory to ease her tight muscles. The handheld device features three levels of vibration and comes with five different head attachments to target specific areas of the body. You can pair it with a companion app via Bluetooth to control the massage gun’s speed. The brand also said you can pack this device in your carry-on when traveling.
I invested in the Booty Kicker Exercise Barre in March 2020, when my favorite barre and pilates studios shut down due to Covid. I began taking online fitness classes at home, which I’ve grown to enjoy too much to return to the gym in person. Thus, my exercise barre has gotten more use than originally expected, and I’m pleased to say it’s held up to constant use.
The Booty Kicker Exercise Barre is versatile, making a great gift for those looking to expand their at-home gym setup. It folds flat when not in use — I store it under my bed in my studio apartment — and features wheels that engage when the barre is assembled, so you can move it around your home. In addition to a wooden barre, the Booty Kicker features removable weight racks to store dumbbells. You can also purchase a tablet and smartphone holder, sold separately.
Available in men’s and women’s sizes, the new generation of On’s Cloudswift sneaker boasts the brand’s Helion superfoam for added cushioning, as well as enlarged Clouds in the back of the shoe for softer landings, the brand says. According to On, the shoe’s rocker outsole provides traction and optimizes the natural rolling motion of your feet together with the Speedboard. While it took me a day or two to get used to the rocker outsole when I first started wearing this shoe, I’ve found that it’s supportive and offers the stability I was looking for, leading me to gift a pair to the other runners in my family. Additionally, the sneaker boasts a padded tongue and collar and a recycled engineered mesh upper.
I was recently gifted this running jacket, and it’s become my go-to when I head outdoors during the colder months. The down-filled baffles provide insulation to keep me warm, and the jacket sports reflective details, as well as mesh-lined venting on the back. The jacket is available in sizes ranging from XS to XXL and it comes in two colors: Pink Oxford/Sail and Black/Atomic Orange.
Compression socks offer benefits like relief for muscle soreness and increased circulation, according toComrad. You can add them to a stocking or gift them to those who may be looking for workout recovery options. These knee-high socks provide 15 to 20 mmHg of true graduated compression, the brand says, and they come in a pack of three. In addition to multiple tie-dye colors, the socks are also available in patterns like Stripes, Ombre and Space Dye.
The best item I gifted myself in 2021 is my Bala Bangles. I wrap the 1-pound weights around my wrist or ankles while doing Pilates, yoga, barre and cardio workouts, and it’s no exaggeration to say I use them every day. You can also purchase 2-pound Bala Bangles (which I also own and swear by). Bala sells other fitness equipment you can gift to fitness buffs, too. The brand’s offerings include The Power Ring, Bala Beam and Bala Bars, and it recently launched three new items: The Play Mat, Balance Blocks and The Hourglass Roller.
The weightlifter in your life may already own a collection of dumbbells, but kettlebells can add difficulty to exercises like lunges and squats — they change your center of gravity, according to personal trainer and Select writer Stephanie Mansour. Bowflex’s adjustable kettlebell allows you to adjust the amount of weight you’re lifting between 8 pounds and 40 pounds.
Earlier this year, TRX launched handles to snap on to any resistance bands, offering a comfortable grip and increased control while working out. The TRX Bandit comes with a set of two handles, and they’re compact, so you can take them to the gym or office or travel with them. You can purchase the handles by themselves if your loved one already owns resistance bands, or if not, the TRX Bandit Kit comes with the handles, two blue TRX Strength Bands and two green TRX Strength Bands.
Select writer Claire Tighe recommends the Jade Yoga Harmony Mat for its anti-stick properties, which help prevent your feet and hands from slipping while using it. It’s reversible and designed with natural rubber for extra grip while you work out, according to the brand. The mat comes in colors like Teal, Raspberry, Purple and more.
Whether your loved one spends a lot of time at the gym, on hikes or riding bikes, this reusable water bottle can help them stay hydrated. It comes in four sizes — 20, 32, 40 and 64 ounces — and you can purchase it with different caps and lids. The water bottle is constructed from stainless steel and features double wall insulation, which, according to the brand, can keep liquids cold for up to 24 hours.
Buying gifts for my dad and brother is always challenging, but gifting Lululemon’s Surge Warm Half-Zip for the holidays was a recent win: They wear it to the gym, on the basketball court and while running. The top is designed from Lululemon’s Rulu fabric, which the brand says is lightweight, sweat-wicking and offers four-way stretch. It boasts a zippered pocket in the seam for small items like earbuds, as well as thumb holes on the sleeves.
Someone in your life may be in need of a bag to pack their workout clothes in when they’re going from the office to the gym. This can be worn over your shoulder or as a backpack, and it features a trolley sleeve to slip over your luggage handle while traveling. The brand says the bag was designed to fit in a gym locker, and it includes an interior bag for dirty clothing and shoes. The bag also offers multiple interior and exterior pockets and comes in Black and Beige.
Classpass is a monthly fitness membership that gives you access to a variety of in-person or virtual fitness classes, as well as wellness and beauty options. You can purchase your loved ones a gift card to the program and customize your gift amount, which corresponds to how many credits and classes the recipient will receive. The gift card is sent to recipients via email on a specified date you select.
Jabra’s Elite Active 75t earbuds are IP57-rated, offering sweat, water and dust resistance, and they are built with a grip coating to help them stay in place while you’re working out. The earbuds pair with a companion app, which allows you to switch between Active Noise Cancellation and HearThrough modes, depending on how much outside noise you want to let in. They boast four microphones and are compatible with Siri, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, according to Jabra.
If you know someone who recently began boxing, perhaps they have a pair of boxing gloves on their wish list. These ones are constructed from synthetic leather, and the brand says they’re designed to conform to the natural shape of your hand. The gloves feature a wraparound Velcro strap closure, as well as foam layers and padding to protect your hands. They’re also made with an anti-odor treatment, according to the brand, and have mesh fabric around the palm area for added breathability.
Amazon’s newly released Halo View fitness tracker records workouts, daily activities, steps walked, calories burned and more. Built-in sensors report health metrics like heart rate and blood oxygen levels, and you can receive text notifications, start workouts and get reminders to move. The Halo View sports a color touch display and pairs with a companion app that helps you learn more about your body and health, according to Amazon. The fitness tracker offers up to seven days of battery life on a single charge, according to the brand, and it’s water resistant up to 50 meters. The Halo View is available in Small/Medium and Medium/Large sizes, and you can choose from three band colors: Active Black, Sage Green and Lavender Dream. You can also purchase additional bands, sold separately.
Outdoor Voices’ Exercise Dress was revamped in 2021, adding adjustable T-back straps and a second pocket on the leg liner to hold items like a phone or your keys. The Exercise Dress features a built-in bodysuit liner, and leg grippers help prevent the leg liner from scrunching up when you’re moving around. The dress is available in multiple colors and patterns, including Black Polka, Deep Taupe and OV Blue. Select editor Morgan Greenwald owns this dress and wears it even when she’s not working out. “It’s a great athleisure look,” she said.
Many may still be working from home this winter, and an under desk elliptical machine allows you to add some movement to your day while sitting at your desk. As recommended in our guide to under desk ellipticals, this option from Cubii features a built-in LCD display that shows stats like calories burned, distance traveled and move. It offers eight resistance levels and comes in colors like Aqua, Purple and Yellow.
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