Once you've made a sandbag of the appropriate weight, hopefully using bags that are tough enough not to split open and cover your floor in sand during the course of an exercise session, you will have a superb tool both for enhanced, rapid aerobic conditioning and for strength training and muscle building. How you set up the training sandbags give you depends on what your goals are, so identifying those goals clearly is the first step towards developing a sandbag workout routine.

The most well-rounded approach is to try for both conditioning and muscular development. The strength training will give you physical power, and the conditioning training will give you the endurance to use that muscular force over an extended period of time. If you want to develop your fitness in this way, you will need to decide how to work both elements into your routine.

Some possible methods include doing conditioning and strength training on alternate days; doing a session of one type in the morning and a session of the other type in the evening; or alternating between the two in a single session. Each has advantages and disadvantages, and the best method is probably to test several and see which “feels” right for you.

In lieu of attending to both types of exercise with the training sandbags provide, you can also focus exclusively on either conditioning or strength. This is best done when you only need one or the other, already having a lot of muscle mass or being conditioned to a high level of endurance.

The secret to making your sandbag workout routines fruitful is to make them anything but “routine”. At a very minimum, you should have three to five different sessions worked out, with a range of various sandbag exercises listed, so that you will use different muscle groups and continue to build your fitness without needing to extend each session into a multi-hour marathon.

At best, you should apply your ingenuity to ensure that you never do exactly the same exercise session twice. In this case, your sandbag exercises and repetitions are a framework rather than a hard and fast guide, and you “improvise” to a considerable extent on these themes.

Sandbags suggest unusual and one-time exercises through their very flexibility – so you can add variety to the mix by altering angle, position, and motions within the broad boundaries of a few basic exercises (lifts, lunges, squats, walking, etc.). Carrying out an intensive set of exercises with as many variations as possible will ensure that your fitness program continues to progress, rather than just maintaining you at your current level of strength or conditioning.