The 10 Best Gym Bags

Updated June 14, 2017 by Quincy Miller

10 Best Gym Bags
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 34 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. If you've ever had to lug sweaty, stinky clothes to the office in a plastic grocery bag, then you know how handy a good gym bag can be. The right one can keep all of your gear organized, so you can work out without worrying about losing your keys or wallet, and some of these options can double as excellent weekend travel bags, as well. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best gym bag on Amazon.

10. Everest Gym Bag

The Everest Gym Bag is a medium-sized choice that has a useful layout with plenty of compartments, including a very handy water bottle pouch. It won't hold anything bigger than 16 ounces, though, so expect to make several trips to the fountain for refills.
  • great for martial arts gear
  • exterior pockets zip shut securely
  • not as durable as we'd like
Brand everest
Model S223-RD/BK
Weight 2 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

9. Ogio Crunch

With its unique styling and innovative design, the Ogio Crunch makes a great multifunctional bag. It has a wide, U-shaped opening for easy access, and there's a pocket with a headphone port, so you don't have to stop your music or podcast just because the workout's over.
  • durable plastic handle
  • slip-resistant straps
  • zippers are poor quality
Brand OGIO
Weight 2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

8. Mier Barrel

If you want a bag that can be stored in a locker when you're pumping iron, the Mier Barrel is compact enough to be put away while also offering plenty of room for your essentials. What's more, the sleek, modern look will make you the envy of everyone else in the gym.
  • good value for the price
  • high-quality zipper
  • shoe pocket is small
Brand MIER
Weight 12.8 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

7. Runetz Sport

Count on the Runetz Sport to meet the rigorous demands of your daily routine, as it has reinforced-stitched seams that make it extremely durable. It doesn't have much in the way of pockets, but that gives it more room in the interior compartment for larger items.
  • well-padded shoulder strap
  • machine washable
  • not good at keeping moisture out
Brand Runetz
Model Bago Duffle Bag-DuffelN
Weight 1.6 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Thule Chasm

Made of a waterproof tarpaulin fabric, the Thule Chasm lives up to its name thanks to its cavernous main compartment. This makes it ideal for sports with bulky equipment, like tennis - but it's also great for camping, as you can fit an entire sleeping bag inside.
  • easy to access your gear
  • full-length internal mesh pocket
  • pricier than other options
Brand Thule
Model 221404-P
Weight 3.1 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

5. Lug Puddle Jumper

If you're having to shower and do your cosmetic routine at the gym, then the Lug Puddle Jumper is built for storing toiletries and makeup. There's a compact mirror inside it as well, so you can make sure you're presentable before heading back to the office.
  • 2 water bottle slots
  • big enough to hold a laptop
  • seams are prone to ripping
Brand Lug
Weight 2.3 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

4. Adidas Team Speed

The Adidas Team Speed features a polyester rip-stop fabric with contrasting accents, and has a ClimaProof water-resistant bottom, so you can set it down and not have to worry about nasty moisture soaking through to wreak havoc on your clothes or equipment.
  • front fob keeps keys safe
  • ventilated end cap
  • available in 10 color options
Brand adidas
Model Team Speed Duffel Mediu
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

3. Bago Travel Duffel

Sometimes you have to pack gym gear for more than just yourself, and in those instances the Bago Travel Duffel is the perfect choice. It's absolutely massive, with nearly three cubic feet of interior space, and yet when empty it folds up for easy storage.
  • can still access pockets when folded
  • excellent for backpackers
  • convenient corded zippers
Brand bago
Model Duffel-85-Blue
Weight 1.5 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. Cobra Grips Duffel

If the thought of stuffing smelly, sweaty gym clothes into a bag you carry with you every day grosses you out, then the Cobra Grips Duffel has a separate ventilated compartment for storing your used gear without allowing the funk to spread to the rest of the bag.
  • can also be worn as a backpack
  • made of durable pvc-coated polyester
  • big enough for use on short trips
Brand Grip Power Pads
Weight 3.8 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

1. Under Armour Undeniable Storm

The Under Armour Undeniable Storm stands your sneakers upright, as opposed to burying them under all your other clothes, thus helping to extend their lifespan. It's got plenty of room, but is also small enough to be used as a carry-on while flying.
  • interior compartment for valuables
  • mesh pocket holds items securely
  • handy d-ring on the front
Brand Under Armour
Model 1256533
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

How Do I Choose the Right Gym Bag For ME?

Obviously, the first question you need to ask yourself before purchasing a gym bag is, "What do I need this gym bag to hold?" The answer might not be as elementary as you think. Purchasing the right gym bag requires taking into account whether you'll need to shower after a workout. It also requires considering whether you'll need compartments for medicine and toiletries and such.

As a general rule, you'll want a gym bag to have an insulated, and perhaps even padded, compartment for any items that are fragile, or that hold the potential to leak. Conversely, you'll want a perforated compartment for any items, like, say, a pair of gym socks, that might have the potential to stink.

Beyond that, you'll want to consider what your workouts consist of. If you're a weightlifter, you'll need a gym bag to accommodate gloves, powder, tape, a weight belt, and any other equipment that you're known to bring along. If you're a swimmer, you'll need a bag that can accommodate goggles, flippers, a bathing cap, eye drops, ear drops, and any other accessories that you commonly associate with going in the water.

The idea of a gym bag is to keep everything compact, which is what separates this type of bag from, say, a hockey equipment bag, or a bulky duffel. One of the benefits of owning a gym bag is that the bag itself is lightweight. More often than not, you'll want a gym bag that weighs somewhere between 12 oz. and 2 lbs. Durable, yes, and yet agile enough that you can carry it to the gym.

Several Little-Known Advantages to Owning a Gym Bag

Do not underestimate the power of a gym bag. Gym bags are designed by using strong, lightweight materials, many of which are waterproof at the very least. This, combined with the fact that any gym bag features multiple compartments, means that the bag itself can be repurposed for any number of things.

Gym bags can be used for weekend trips as they provide compartments for toiletries and make-up and medication and clothes. Gym bags can be used for a day at the beach as they provide compartments for magazines and sun block and inflatables and shoes. If you've got toddlers, a gym bag can be used for storing formula and wet wipes and diapers and toys. If you've got teenagers, a gym bag can be used for attending sleepovers, or going to any type of practice after school.

Gym bags are preferable to suitcases if you happen to be traveling somewhere by bus or by train. Along those same lines, a gym bag is considered more acceptable as a carry-on item, which is important if you like to keep everything at arm's length. If you live in an apartment, an empty gym bag can be tucked into a closet or a drawer. If you work in an office, a brimming gym bag can be tucked beneath a desk on the floor.

The point of all this being that a gym bag might hold more potential than you think. Gym bags are a tremendous utility for transporting cargo, and they're intentionally designed to make you look stylish and chic.

How The Duffel Bag Became a Gym Bag

Duffel bags derive their name from a town in Belgium where the bag's heavyweight cloth was originally manufactured. Early duffels were adopted by the military during World War II specifically because they could fit a great deal of cargo, and they were resilient enough to take a beating.

In the years immediately following World War II, American soldiers brought their duffel bags home, whereupon these bags continued to be used for easy storage. Duffels became particularly popular along the California coast, where a local surfing craze had taken hold.

Surfers gravitated toward duffel bags organically. These heavyweight bags were perfect for the day-to-day that accompanied living out of a Woodie, or chasing a wave out on some foreign coast. During the sixties, outdoor enthusiasts began using duffel bags, as did anyone who enjoyed a transitory life.

By the 1970s, the duffel bag had become a reflection of the bohemian culture. You packed a bag, you hit the road. It was around this time that physical fitness became a major trend throughout Southern California. Long-time gymrats were using duffel bags to carry gear and other equipment to and fro.

Manufacturers responded by introducing a much more stylized bag that had a mainstream look and appeal. These newer bags had a lightweight sheen, and they had multiple compartments. Gym bags, as they came to be called, meant athletes no longer had to be concerned about mildewed items or wrinkled clothes. A gym bag represented an all-in-one utility. A duffel bag, on the other hand, represented a no-frills valise for hitting the road.

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Last updated on June 14, 2017 by Quincy Miller

Quincy is a writer who was born in Texas, but moved to Los Angeles to pursue his life-long dream of someday writing a second page to one of his screenplays.

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