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Sandbag Bear Hug Hold

May 16, 2023 | Joel Runyon

Sometimes you just need to hold some heavy weight. This might be the least complicated movement in our database, but don’t discount it. This is a spicy movement that can be really effective at building muscular endurance and mental fortitude.

You will need a heavy sandbag – or some other heavy object that you can wrap your arms around for an extended period of time.

How to do a Sandbag Bear Hug Hold

Start with your heavy sandbag on the floor in front of you. Bend down and pick up the sandbag. This should be heavy so be sure to use your legs (and not your back) to move the weight.

Get the bag to your chest with your arms around it in a hug position. Feet should stay beneath you the entire time.

Now, you hold.

This will start to feel heavy on your chest and fatigue your arm, back, and leg muscles. Avoid arching your low back by thinking about pulling your rib cage down.

Sandbag Bear Hug Hold Workout

We recommend doing a max effort hold to see how long you can last. This will really test your mental grit. You can also pick a time window (for example 5 minutes) and hold the bag for that amount of time.

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Joel Runyon

Joel is the founder of IMPOSSIBLE® and MoveWell. In addition to free fitness resources on Impossible Fitness - you can buy performance apparel and supplements on