T Nation

Sandbag Kicked My Arse

Man, just finished a small session with the sand bag. i dont know how much i loaded it with, but plenty would be the answer (will weigh).

Shouldering, picking off the floor stone style, OH squats just killed me. sweating, breating hard, back working hard, abs bulging at the exertion of supporting the weight arter ripping it off the floor to shoulder it 1 last time.

Cheap (would have been if i hadn’t bought from iron mind but army surplus and hardware store, book is good though), i pinched the gravel from a council site…free!

Lots of variation, drag/lift/grind.

Has anyone else tried this, what kind of response/training effect, and did it hve any cross over (grip/bar strength/stability).

Any great tips?

I have one. Get an army kit bag ad sandbag 2x a week. now my hands are seizing.

Sandbags seperate the men from…well, everybody else. A 100 lb. sandbag is not the same as a 100 lb. barbell or DB. I find it better to buy what is called “play sand” at Home Depot, etc. It’s clean and sifted. No stones,sticks, etc. these will put small cuts in the bag over time. A bag of play sand is about 40 lb. Wrap in in another heavy duty plastic bag (at least 6 mil) and duck tape it. Then wrap an old t-shirt around it and duck tape that. HERE’S THE SECRET! Now wrap it with industrial grade stretch and seal (saran wrap) this will make it rip proof. Now put it in your army duffle bag. Try 1 arm overhead carries.
Actually anything overhead with a sandbag is just plain brutal.

TNT

I played around with a sandbag for a couple of months I didn’t have the money for the gym.
Have you tried turkish getups with the sandbag.
I did clean and presses,turkish get ups ,overhead squats,snatch. I had 100 lbs of sand but it wasn’t heavy enough so I bought a bunch of 5 lb plates.It is a good change of pace.

Sandbag training will kick anyones butt.

I have a few sandbags of varous weights. It seems like a 90lb. sandbag weighs about 200lbs. at times.

On of my favorite movements is to grab the thing off the ground and shoulder it as fast as I can, then drop it and do it again. I do this as many times as I can.

I rest maybe 2 min. between sets. it’s ugly…very ugly.

Hang a “small” sandbag on each end of a 5’ bar or heavy dowel. Use about 12-18" of rope so that it can swing. Try overhead lunge walks. The bags start swinging and not necessarily in unison.
Terrific for core and balance. Be prepared for “an involuntary lateral pole vault” when one of the bags wacks you along side of the head. More fun than a barrel of monkeys. Walking up the grandstand steps is just as bad.

TNT

Oly styles lifts are GREAT
Power Cleans, Hang Cleans, Clean & Jerks, Snatches etc. I made one so heavy that I would put it in the back of my truck outside my gym. We would go outside, I would unload it, clean it and shoulder it, then drop. I then challenged my MALE clients to get it off the ground! (not clean it) just get it off the ground. That was how I explained real “functional” strength to them and to make sure they got rid of their love for stability balls. It’s trully addicting! By the way, no one was able to lift it before the winter set in!

the other thing I forgot to mention was that I used to do complexes with the sandbag you can make up endless variations. I used to do snatch(hang), overhead squat,press,front squat,press

checkout Bear Season by John Davies in the search function

I have become a huge fan of wheelbarrow runs and walks. Take any cheap wheelbarrow and start loading it up with bags of playsand. The ones I get around here are 60lbs each at Home Depot. The street in front of house has a perfect incline - not too steep, but steep enough to be challenging. I run sprints with either one or two bags, long trudges with 3-5 bags. I also like to do pyramids - run with 1, run with 2, walk with 3, walk with 4, walk with 5, then head back down the other side. Great way to get your cardio in.

Haha!
I made an adjustable sandbag (several small sandbags inside of a large one) with max weight of 120 lbs.
Absolutely humiliating.

Shadow

Hey guys,

How tightly packed do you make the sandbags? DO you leave a little room in the bag to allow the sand to move around, or do you pack it real tight to minimise movement?

Thanks

I think you can do both. My sandbag (from iron mind) has lots of smaller bags (will hold around 60 lb, like water barrier sand bags). I have used gravel to take up more room, and just collect in the rest in grip or squeeze.

I am going to make a smaller, more compact but equally heavy bag for a change.

I weighed up the individual bags in the big-un (which looks as if it will hold 200lb plus), and it was abolut 40 kg (88lb).

Man, picking it up stone ball style just crused me.

These tips are great. keep em coming.

[quote]scrooge wrote:
Hey guys,

How tightly packed do you make the sandbags? DO you leave a little room in the bag to allow the sand to move around, or do you pack it real tight to minimise movement?

Thanks[/quote]

I like my sandbags loose. This is for the purpose of grabbing, the way you might grab a person, if you had to that is. :slight_smile:

If I wanted the bags tight I would use a rock instead. Rock lifting is an entirely different topic.

would it be a fair substitute for round rock/rock lifting, to get me started.

Getting stones in the uk is expensive (VERY!)

[quote]miniross wrote:
would it be a fair substitute for round rock/rock lifting, to get me started.

Getting stones in the uk is expensive (VERY!)[/quote]

You’ll have to adjust your technique a little with a real stone, but I’d say the sand bags are a great way to get started.

The best technique with a real stone is more of an over-the-top type grip rather than a bear hug. It takes the strain off the bi’s and puts it more on the upper back. Kind of tuff to simulate with something flatter like a sandbag.

Have you looked into buying or making your old molds?

I have seen something about moulds. how does the finished article compare with granite stones, and what mix of comcrete would you use.

What about them being smooth…

Any pro/con would help, and a good source.

how would you make your own?

Its weird how bagged materials feel way heavier than their weight, especially if they’re not packed tight.

Had to go help my dad out at his farm this weekend, unloaded several 50 lb bags of feed and corn for deer feeders and then grabbed a 50 lb bag of catfish food we put out in a pond. Both bags weigh 50 lbs, but the catfish food is packed much tighter in its bag, felt like I was picking up something half the weight of the bags of corn.

The point of this: If you load the sandbags a little looser, it’ll make you work harder. And I agree a 40 lb bag of playground sand feels way heavier than 50 lbs of corn.

I made some sandbags a couple summers ago. I have 4 x 50lb bags that I use mostly for grip work - grab by neck of the bag and farmers walk it - then grab 2 in each hand and do the same. I’ve also got 110, 130 and 190+ lb bags. When I weighed the 190+ it reminded me of Homer Simpson trying to get to 300lbs and weighing himself with his gut stuck on the towel rack… the bag sides were off the scale resting on the floor, but it still registered 190… it’s fun to deadlift and walk with, just a few seconds kicks your ass.

I’ve got somewhere between 250 and 350 lbs of sand in 3 lb increment bags.

I load these in a couple of heavy duffle bags and when I do a sandbag work I do alot of carries and drags at the football field along with the usual clean and presses and some overhead throws to simulate wrestling throws.

I am tired for 2 or 3 days after a hard core sandbag work out.

Great stuff.

My bags are from the design by Matt “Wiggy” Wiggins.

You put 1 1/3 up of sand in a quart zipper style siploc bag and then you put 3 quart bags in a gallong zipper style ziploc bag.

1 1/3 cup of sand is around 1 lb depending on wetness and the 3 lb gallong bags make it easy to change the load rapidly.

[quote]miniross wrote:
I have seen something about moulds. how does the finished article compare with granite stones, and what mix of comcrete would you use.

What about them being smooth…

Any pro/con would help, and a good source.

how would you make your own?[/quote]

Here are few links:

Check out this place first. I don’t know if they’ll ship overseas, but they have lots of good stone building tips. Be sure to checl out the FAQ and pics too.
http://www.slatershardware.com/stone.aspx

Another place that sells molds. Again, in the US, but maybe they can point you in the right direction.
http://strongmanequipment.com/stone_molds.cfm

Some DIY sites:
http://ontariostrongman.ca/Resources/stone/fibreglass_mold/fibreglass_mold_how-to.html

http://www.tc.umn.edu/~keen0018/makeastone.htm

http://www.ontariostrongman.ca/Resources/stone/stonemaking.html

[quote]TNT-CDN wrote:
Sandbags seperate the men from…well, everybody else. A 100 lb. sandbag is not the same as a 100 lb. barbell or DB. I find it better to buy what is called “play sand” at Home Depot, etc. It’s clean and sifted. No stones,sticks, etc. these will put small cuts in the bag over time. A bag of play sand is about 40 lb. Wrap in in another heavy duty plastic bag (at least 6 mil) and duck tape it. Then wrap an old t-shirt around it and duck tape that. HERE’S THE SECRET! Now wrap it with industrial grade stretch and seal (saran wrap) this will make it rip proof. Now put it in your army duffle bag. Try 1 arm overhead carries.
Actually anything overhead with a sandbag is just plain brutal.

TNT[/quote]

Good description for making a sandbag. Where does one get industrial grade saran wrap from?

thanks

anton