Getting to the gym can be difficult, especially when you have a long day at work ahead, or you’ve just finished one. First thing in the morning, or when you’re at work, you don’t want to be worrying about what you need for the gym. This makes life stressful, and life is stressful enough as it is. Having a list of everything you need for the gym will help you stay calm, and will mean you’re more likely to go, as you feel happier and in control. And that’s what we love to see.

Here’s the top 10 essentials for your gym bag from Sports Samurai:

  1. Workout gear. Well… duh! How are you going to work out without gear? Depending on preference, this usually includes shorts or tracksuit bottoms or leggings, t-shirt or vest, gym socks, and gym trainers. On cold days, consider wearing more layers, especially if you’re planning to do anything outdoors.
  2. Reusable water bottle. Drinking water throughout the day is important to have a good gym workout. This is because water regulates your body temperature and lubricates your joints. It helps transport nutrients to give you energy and keep you healthy. Make sure you’re getting in enough water by keeping a reusable water bottle with you at all times, especially whilst you exercise.
  3. Gym towel. For those sweaty workouts, everyone needs a gym towel. Gyms aren’t the most hygienic of places, so let’s improve this by wiping our own sweat when we’ve finished using equipment. You can either sit or lie on the towel, or use it to wipe things down with – either works. You could even invest in a gym towel with a built-in pocket to put your padlock keys or small valuables in.
  4. Toiletries (especially deodorant). Put on some deodorant before your workout. This will mean you’re likely to sweat less, and you’ll also smell better. Also, if you shower at the gym, toiletries are a must. Keep some shower gel, shampoo, face wash (if you use it!), and some after shave in your bag so you can look and feel great after your workout.
  5. Padlock. Some gyms can be unsafe. You’ve spent a lot of money on your phone, watch, clothes, and other valuables. Why risk not locking these up properly? A padlock is essential for your bag, and a heavy duty one is best. This will stop the majority of thieves from getting into your locker, and give you peace of mind whilst you exercise.
  6. Flip flops. If your gym has a swimming pool, a sauna, or a steam room, consider putting in a pair of flip flops in your bag. Some people also wear flip flops to shower, because gym changing rooms are usually filled with germs (sorry to say!). Without flip flops, these can stick to the bottom of your feet, and potentially cause infections. Keep a pair handy at all times.
  7. Skipping rope. This is one of our favourites – and is a great tool for warming up when time is limited. A skipping rope is a great way to increase your heart rate, and burn calories. Skipping ropes can also be more fun and creative compared to warming up on standard cardiovascular machines. They’re ideal to purchase because they are light and portable, which means you can use them anywhere you go. Here are further benefits of using a skipping rope, and this contains some ideas for workouts you can do using one.
  8. Gloves or liquid chalk. For those who lift, gloves or liquid chalk (if your gym allows it) is essential. Either of these should help you to lift heavier weights. Liquid chalk soaks up the moisture on your palms and fingers, whilst gloves can help with callous prevention, improved grip strength, and comfort. Further information on the advantages of gym gloves can be found here.
  9. Headphones. Some people prefer not to listen to music while they work out, but for those who do, headphones are a must for any gym workout. Music can help people feel happier and more motivated. Consider buying some bluetooth headphones and leave your phone on the side (in a safe place), so it’s not constantly distracting you whilst you exercise.
  10. Spare clothes. Once you’ve showered, you’re going to need some spare clothes, unless you want to get back into your sweaty gym clothes again… No, didn’t think so! Keeping spare clothes on you can help if you’re heading somewhere straight after the gym.


We aim to make your life easier with the top 10 essentials for your gym bag. Some of these items may seem like common sense, but it’s worth printing off the list, or writing it down, and keeping it in your gym bag to make life easier. Being in control will help keep you motivated to work out. If you don’t already own a gym bag, or feel like upgrading, check out our selection of quality gym bags.