It’s never been easier to find great gift ideas for fitness enthusiasts. Athleisure has taken hold of our fashion choices. We’re tracking our steps and heart rates with wearable technology, and working out from home is part of our new flexible fitness routines. 

If you have an avid fitness fan on your gift list this holiday season, or maybe you’d like to drop some hints for your own gifts this holiday season, here are some suggestions for some practical but fun items.  

New fitness gear

People who work out on the regular tend to go through exercise gear fairly quickly. New sneakers are a great idea, especially ones that are designed for your favourite classes or exercises. Workout tops and bottoms might be an easier gift option. Look for clothing that is comfortable, fashionable and offers features specific to physical activity – like sweat wicking, extra support, minimal seams and more. For an even safer bet that doesn’t require sizing, consider giving accessories like a hat, sunglasses, gloves, hair ties for whatever exercise the recipient loves most. New gear is not only functional but can boost workout motivation.  

A yoga mat

A good quality yoga mat can be a special treat for yoga lovers and floor exercisers alike. Thinner mats can help increase stability for styles of yoga with more active poses or balanced, focused poses. Look for mats with textured surfaces to maintain better grip when the poses get more strenuous. Thicker mats provide extra cushioning and are best for more therapeutic practices. Thicker mats are also more comfortable for forearm and kneeling poses and for yogis with tender knees or achy joints. But they can be more difficult to balance on during standing poses. 

A water bottle

A new water bottle is a staple for most people who exercise regularly and want to stay hydrated. But not all water bottles are equal. Plastic ones are less expensive and light but can start to smell over time. Glass is hygienic but can break easily. Metal water bottles are a great option because they can be washed in the dishwasher.  

Foam roller

Foam rollers of different shapes and sizes are available at most sports stores and even regular department stores. If you’re not sure what’s best for a gift, go with a medium firm, standard size roller. They come with extra firmness and in different lengths and widths to massage different muscles and part of the body. Some even have bumps and ridges to push more into the muscles and work out those kinks. 

Wearable tech

For your friends and loved ones who like to stay on the cutting edge of technology, there are lots of options for wearable technology that will complement a fitness routine. A smart watch is an obvious choice to track heart rate, steps, sleep and more. Wireless earbuds are also a really good option to keep the tunes running while you run. Or consider a heartrate monitor, like the MyZone, that can monitor your workout intensity and enable you to compare your exertion over time and with others.  

An active mask

There are lots of breathable face masks out there for active people looking to protect themselves and others. Well-known athletics companies like Under Armour, Reebok and Adidas have designed lightweight, breathable face masks with physical activity in mind. There are water repellant, antibacterial, mesh versions, like the one from Masqd that allow extra breathing room and still hug your face. Some clothing companies like Hanes have stepped up to offer well-fitted, protective face coverings in cool styles and colours to suit every taste. Even disposable masks are lightweight and come in fun colours.  

Giving fitness equipment and gear to keep your friends and loved ones moving into the new year is the gift that keeps on giving. You can’t go wrong encouraging healthy habits and supporting activity well into the new year.