Running a Bootcamp guide

May 03, 2023 7 min read

Running a Bootcamp guide

Do I need equipment for my Boot camp, well it is possible to run a boot camp without spending any money at all, and it is excellent if you need to start your business from scratch. However, this doesn't mean that exercise equipment is unimportant.

Why You Should  Consider Purchasing Equipment

Investing in fitness equipment will make your boot camp stand out from the competition. It can refresh your classes and greatly broaden the range of activities you can choose from. One of the best ways to keep your clients and get recommendations is to keep your exercise classes interesting and enjoyable. Increased cardiovascular fitness and calorie burning are two benefits of boot camps.

However, what if some of your participants want to increase their muscle mass? In that case, body-weight exercises might not be sufficient. To add resistance in the form of kettlebells, slam balls, tyres, dumbbells, and barbells may really assist those participating get stronger, which is why equipment can be so helpful.

Battle ropes, skipping ropes, and plyometric boxes are additional pieces of equipment that can enhance athleticism and make exercise more enjoyable.

Factors to Influence your Equipment Selection

,Your bootcamp equipment list depends on a number of factors:

  • What space you have available, inside or outside
  • How portable is  the equipment
  • Your budget
  • What your clients need
    • Your Proposed Space - If you have a large indoor space which you can call your own, then you can basically have any piece of equipment you fancy. If you're renting a small room in the local village hall then you may not be able to use anything.

      Think about the space you have available, and the practicalities of bringing equipment and using it safely. If your boot camp is outdoors then you may have unlimited space, but what is the practicality for equipment?

      If your outdoor space  is muddy, then a sled/ prowler might not be practical, In the event you have no strong trees or posts around, then you may not be able to use suspension trainers or battle ropes?

       Bootcamp Equipment Mobility - If your boot camp is part of public land then you will have to bring your bootcamp equipment with you to every session. This may not always be easy to do.

      If its just you then assess how far your carrying equipment from vehicle to bootcamp space. 

      However jump ropes on the other hand, are light and easy to transport, as are suspension trainers. While having a sled or prowler,  can be used to transport other pieces of bootcamp equipment.

      What is Your Budget For Bootcamp Equipment -   Good quality fitness equipment is often quite expensive. So its worth building up your equipment as your client base grows. While it is of course your decision as to when to start introducing equipment, we would recommend doing so once your boot camp has a reliable income. 

      What Bootcamp Equipment Do Your Clients Expect - Before purchasing everything on your bootcamp equipment list, it is probably a good idea to make sure that your current clients actually want what you're buying! If your clients already love your amazing bodyweight routines then bringing in new equipment and changing your session structure may not go down well. 

      Now, most clients won’t have an opinion either way, so only listen if your current clients are dead set against it. If that is the case, then you can always consider setting up a separate boot camp where you use equipment. Then look at attracting new clients, or just catering to the clients who are interested.

      What Fitness Equipment Should You Get?

      This a an outline of options of bootcamp equipment to give you an idea of what you may be interested in bringing to your classes, with consideration to cost, variety of usage and portability.

      • Battle Ropes
      • Slam Balls
      • Kettlebells
      • Tyres
      • Suspension Trainers
      • Farmer’s Walk bars
      • Sleds/Prowler
      • Plyometric Boxes
      • Skipping Ropes
      • Dumbbells/Barbells


      Escape Battlerope

      Battle Ropes

      it is simple to understand why battle ropes are so popular with boot camps these days. They have a really nice physical appearance, can be fun to use, are simple to add into circuits, and are reasonably priced. If you have the space, you can utilise battle ropes for both tug-of-war exercises and HIIT training.


      • Versatility – variety of exercises 
      • Easy Storage
      • Excellent for HIIT or circuit training
      • Inexpensive 


      • Take up a lot of space when in use
      • Require good technique to be performed, so you will have to teach this to your members before incorporating it into your sessions
      • Difficult, so can’t be used for longer than 30 seconds by most people
      • Need a sturdy tree/ pole to wrap the rope around, 


      Agility cones for bootcamps

      Agility Markers And Cones 

      These plastic  agility marker cones should definitely be part of your initial spend They can be used for circuit training, help  to measure distance (I.e. shuttle sprints), , playing group games, agility training, zoning out areas.

      • Highly Versatile – numerous ways you can use marker cones
      • Small, compact and light , very portable
      • Excellent for marking out different circuit training formations
      • Inexpensive and long lasting.
      • Can be difficult to clean if you use a permanent marker
      • Can deform and damage easily if you buy a cheap set


      Escape femail slam ball twist

      Slam / Medicine Balls

      There are different types of  balls, whether Medicine/Slam or Wall Balls which can be used for different exercises. Rubber or leather, small, medium, or large. Check out  you’re buying the right ball for the exercises you want to do.


      • Inexpensive
      • Easy to add to your boot camp
      • Don’t take up much space when stored or in use
      • Can be used by multiple people at once (throwing to each other etc)


      • May need to use several at a time
      • Portability  from your car to the bootcamp area, might be challenging


      Jordan Lifting Club kettlebells for bootcamps


      Kettlebells are very popular to use, easy to teach, versatile, improve fitness, and increase strength. They are a great all-rounder.


      • Durable, 
      • Excellent way to build fitness and muscle
      • Don’t take up much space


      • Expensive if you have a big class and need to buy  a lot them
      • Need to teach kettlebell technique separately before adding to a class.
      Jordan Tyre tunut for bootcamps


      They have many benefits, but as with kettlebells, they can force your boot camp down a path you may not want to go. However they are a great addition and brilliant for team work / relay races. We really like the Jordan TufNut


      • Cheap or even free, depending on where you get them
      • Lots of fun for clients and coaches
      • Make your boot camps look more enjoyable and hardcore
      • Versatile, can be used for numerous drills and workouts


      • Difficult to transport
      • Take up a lot of space
      • Storage can be an issue
      Nohrd Sling for bootcamps

      Suspension Trainers

      Suspension trainers such as the TRX  are a highly popular go to product for personal trainers. With suspension trainers it really does depend on your location. They need a sturdy pole, beam, branch or equivalent to be attached to. If you train people indoors then this generally is not going to be a problem. Particularly if your boot camp is situated in a studio.

      However Bootcamps outside will be more problematic, if you’ve got goalposts or a tree (just don’t damage them).


      • Good value for money, 
      • Storage and transportation are extremely easy
      • Highly versatile - Lots of exercises you can do with them


      • You NEED to be able to secure them to a frame to use them
      • Many exercises need to be fully coached, 


      Primal Strength Farmers Walk Bars

      Farmers Walk Bars

      For more strength based weightlifting boot camp, Farmers Walk Bar  are a great addition, changing the plates to give your clients personalised weights for there sets.
      However they are limited to just the one exercise (Farmer’s walk obviously) which is great for burning calories, improving grip and upper back strength, as well as improving fitness.


      • Excellent  for relay racing – allowing the whole class to get involved
      • Excellent for improving fitness


      • Difficult to store/transport
      • Single-use, not versatile
      • May put some people off
      • Very niche exercise

      You  do not need a Farmer’s walk bar. you could use a kettlebell in each hand, or a dumbbell. 

      Jordan performance sled for bootcamp

      Sleds & Prowlers

      Sleds and prowlers are different pieces of bootcamp equipment, yet we’ve combined them into one section here because they are similar in a number of ways. Sleds are usually smaller than prowlers, and are better on grass, while prowlers are better on concrete. Other than that, they are basically identical.

      If you have an outdoor boot camp in a field or park then a sled would be the better choice. If you have an indoor boot camp or a boot camp on concrete then a prowler might be better.  We really like the Jordan Performance Sled


      • They can be used to transport your equipment from car to boot camp location
      • Can be pushed or pulled
      • Aerobic and anaerobic workouts possible
      • Fun, tough,
      • Great for teamwork and camaraderie.
      • Potentially attach other equipment such as battle ropes or suspension trainers to them


      • Expensive
      • Storage can be akward
      • Require a lot of space


      Plyometric Boxes

      A very popular piece of equipment for boot camps. They provide a superb cardio workout, and plyometrics is an excellent specialist form of exercise. The video shows the ease of the Escape Multiplyo to provide 3 heights in 1, thus saving on space taken up and ease of transport


      • Numerous plyometric exercises
      • Variety with regular bodyweight exercises such as step ups
      • Durable and inexpensive 
      • Easy to transport and store between classes


      • Plyometrics is a highly technical and difficult form of training
      • Most people do not need to do it, so be prepared to adapt exercises



      Escape Jump rope for Bootcamps

      Skipping Ropes

       Skipping ropes are inexpensive, can improve cardio, don’t take up too much space, and are easy to pick up and learn.

      The chances of injury are low, and if they don’t turn out to fit your boot camp,. Skipping ropes could be one of the first investments you make.


      • Cost
      • Most people already know how to skip, 
      • Easy to store and transport between classes
      • Fun and interesting to use
      • Lots of variations available to make them easier or more difficult


      • Some people struggle to master the technique and may require an alternative exercise
      Primal Rubber dumbbells for bootcamp

       Dumbbells And Barbells 

      Needless to say, if you are running an outdoor boot camp then dumbbells and barbells are not a great idea. You would find it difficult to transport them, you would need a variety of weights for different people, and you would need to teach people how to perform each exercise with flawless technique.

      However, if your boot camp is indoors, dumbbells or barbells certainly have their place.

      But as we mentioned earlier, it will take you further away from your original boot camp. You need to make the decision whether this is what you want or not.


      • Unlimited number of exercises and variations for you to incorporate into your boot camp
      • Burn lots of calories, build muscle, increase fitness


      • Expensive
      • Not that portable, ok if stored though.

      Concluding thoughts

      Outdoor exercise is gaining popularity. At the moment in England, Wales and Scotland organised outdoor activity can take place for up to 30 people, so it’s also an excellent opportunity to spend time with friends, family and meet new people.

      To get started with delivering Bootcamps there’s plenty of training equipment that will help you extend the variety of exercises and intensify your workouts, making your training challenging, interesting and motivating. If this doesn't appeal keep your bootcamps indoors.


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