There are a lot of cool exercises out there that, for a long time, I thought were outside the domain of the home gym owner.
Then I was introduced to the landmine. From the first moment I saw it, I knew I had to have one in my home gym setup…though I didn’t have a home gym at the time.
When I started building my setup, though, I knew damn good and well that I needed a landmine.
Thanks to Titan Fitness, though, I was able to get one for nothing. I mean, literally nothing. You see, when you buy from Titan’s website, you build credits. You can then use these to discount gear. I had enough built up that I could get the landmine attachment for free, so I did.
Here’s what I think of it.
The landmine is a pretty simple concept, so it’s kind of hard to screw it up. However, “hard to screw up” doesn’t mean impossible to do so, which was a concern.
Then again, it’s not like I actually put money down for this.
Luckily, I’d have been delighted with this purchase even if I’d paid for it. At just $33.00, it’s hard to beat for the price.
When the landmine arrived it was in a disassembled state. Despite the simplistic nature of a landmine, you may need a reference guide to assemble it properly. Titan doesn’t send one but instead sends a paper with a URL that has the instructions. I’d prefer that paper just be a quick assembly guide, but it wasn’t a major issue.
It comes with two different mounting bolts, one longer than the other. That means it makes it a universal attachment that should work in pretty much any rack regardless of company. I still have the longer bolt because I do intend to get a new rack at some point and it might come in handy then.
For now, though, it fits fine in the yoke. The action is nice and smooth and you can set it at whatever height you want it for your training.
When it arrived, the packaging was actually intact–a bold, new frontier for Titan–and the powder coating was good to go. The welds looked good enough too.
All in all, it’s pretty much all you could ask for from a company in this regard.
But What Good Is A Landmine?
Look, a landmine isn’t actually essential. You can accomplish most of this just by putting a bar in a corner. However, if you can’t or don’t want to do that for whatever reason, a landmine does a lot of good for your training.
Frankly, there are a few exercises that are awesome that you can’t really do without something like this.
- Viking Presses – This is something they do at strongman competitions in various ways, but basically you take the end of the bar in one hand and lift it up. Because of there being a pivot-point, it won’t go straight up. Instead, it goes at an angle, an angle which seems to mimic an incline press but without a bench. It’s also good for your shoulders and triceps. Also, various companies including Titan sell an attachment that will let you make this a two-handed exercise.
- Landmine Front Squats – On this one, take the bar in both hands and hold it at chest level. Adjust your feet so you’re slightly leaning forward, then squat down. This puts a lot of work on your quads, which may be a weak point for some people. I like to go down until my elbows touch my quads.
- T-Bar Rows – This is a staple of the gym and one of my favorite exercises ever. While you may need to buy an attachment to make this a true T-bar row, you can do this with a towel if you want. You straddle the bar and with a slight bend in your back, you simply row the weight up. You can just interlock your fingers and row it that way, but I found that I lacked clearance. An aggressive row would have me singing soprano, so I use the towel.
- Meadows Rows – These were created by pro bodybuilder John Meadows, and they’re awesome. You simply take the end of the bar in the landmine in one hand, stand at a 90-degree angle to the bar, then row it up. You’re not going to do a whole lot of weight on these, but they’re quickly becoming one of my favorite exercises too.
Of course, these are just a few of the exercises I’ve done with mine and I’ll be honest, I love doing landmine exercises. I could easily envision myself doing nothing but landmine workouts if I allowed myself.
That said, I don’t think that would be a great idea. It’s still a restricted bar path, after all, much like a machine, and that means it limits things just a bit. However, it’s not as limited as a machine, which means if you do nothing but landmine exercises, you could be making worse mistakes.
Is It Essential?
Is the landmine an essential bit of gear for your home gym? No. There’s really nothing you can train with a landmine that you can’t train in some other way.
What it does, though, is give a ton of options for very little cost.
However, if you don’t want to attach something like this to your rack or yoke–and mine has to be removed if I try to use it as a yoke–there are other options. Various companies make post landmines, where the landmine fits into your bar holder or into a stack of plates. There are also options that are floor-based versions with plates that can be put in a corner for anyone who has issues with just putting a bar there. Some folks seem to like a version that mounts on a rack’s safety pin, which is pretty straightforward.
Most of these other versions seem to be a bit more pricey, which is fine if you want to spend the money. Personally, I like the rack mounted version myself, though if I had a traditional rack, I might like the safety pin version as well. Flexibility is always appreciated.
All in all, I’m very happy with this bad boy and it’s quickly become a staple of my training. I highly recommend this one in particular due to its low cost.