When I was young and limber, I could walk into the gym with nothing more than my phone, headphones, and the clothes on my back, and I was good to go.
But as I’ve gotten older, wear and tear has begun to take a toll on me. All of a sudden, it was like I blinked and now I’ve got to haul around a back brace, knee braces, wrist braces, lifting gloves, and who knows what else.
Then there’s all the lotions, muscle rubs, and grooming products needed for my post-workout shower. Add in a change of clothes and a shaker bottle with a supplement or two, and I’ve got an armful and a half.
And that’s why gym bags are so essential to my #gymlife. With a good bag, I’ve got space enough to carry around all of my equipment everywhere I go. I can be ready to hit that training session hard knowing I’ve got everything I need to head home or get back to work post-workout.
In my pursuit of the perfect gym bag, I tested as many as I could get my hands on, talked to all my gym bros, and combed through hundreds (maybe even thousands) of product reviews.
My research has led me to put together this list of the best gym bags below. Check it out, and you might just find the perfect size and style option for your gym lifestyle. I’ve also tested quiet a few gym backpacks if you would rather go that route.
Note: Not all gym bags contain a shoe compartment. We recommend the best shoe bags for just that purpose.
Worried about your clothes, gadgets, and other gear getting wet in the rain, snow, or sleet? Not with this bag, you’re not.
The RAINS gym bag is built with a mix of polyurethane and polyester that makes it fully waterproof, complete with 8,000mm water column pressure. I swear, it could be raining buckets and everything I’ve got zipped up inside the bag—even in the waterproof front pocket—will stay dry and clean.
The boxy shape ensures I’ve got plenty of storage space for all my essentials, and the minimalist design makes it easy to access everything I need at a glance.
The main compartment is large enough to fit my (Size 13) gym shoes, a change of clothes, supplements, shaker bottles, a back brace, and even a towel for my post-workout shower.
Best of all, it’s versatile enough that I can take it on my weekend jaunts to visit family or my (very) occasional holidays. It’s sized perfectly to fit not just in gym lockers, but as a weekender bag in airplane overhead bins and under seats.
With 25.7L of storage space, this is one of best mid-sized gym bags I can recommend.
It’s built with an exterior made of hyper-tough 1000 denier nylon, with a nylon pack cloth inner lining that adds additional water-resistance. The interior zipper pockets makes it easy to keep all your smaller items (AirPods/headphones, charging cable, armband, etc.) organized, but the main compartment offers space aplenty for all your gym gear.
I’m particularly fond of the natural leather handle and lash tabs; to me, they elevate it from more than just “another gym bag” to a beautiful piece of luggage I’m proud to carry on whenever I travel.
And for guys who are worried about the bag breaking down on you with hardcore use, you’ll be glad to know it’s built to last. Between the durable hardware, heavy-duty seatbelt strap handles, and sturdy zipper, you can trust it’ll handle anything you can throw at it.
Sling this bag over your shoulder for your commute to and from work, home, and the gym, and you’ll always travel in style.
The bright color of the bag really stood out from all the bags I researched. It’s eye-catching and classy, and features a striking pattern that makes it stand out from the rest of the bags in this list.
The canvas bag is nicely sturdy to begin with, but the leather bottom adds even more reinforcement to the base so I never have to worry about it breaking or fraying anywhere I go.
With 54L of storage space, I’ve got more than enough room to pack in all my gym clothing and essentials, and a great deal more besides.
Fair warning: the bag is so popular that it (sadly) often sells out. That should prove just how great a choice it is, though.
Living in a household of tradies (mechanic and welder sons), I’ve come to love Carhartt’s work-friendly and ultra-tough products. I initially bought this Legacy bag for my mechanic son to pack his work gear in, but loved it so much I kept it for myself and got him another bag.
The 35-liter size is nicely spacious without being too big, and I’ll gladly take it to the gym as well as on a weekend trip. Organization is made easier by the interior zipper pocket, but the main compartment is open and nicely roomy so I can store as much as I need to carry.
The 1200-denier polyester is tough and abrasion-resistant, and it’s finished with a Rain Defender water repellent coating to shrug off rain, snow, and damp.
And, thanks to the top and side handles and the removable shoulder strap, I’ve got plenty of carry options.
If you’re already wearing Lulus to the gym, it just makes sense to stay on-brand with your gym bag. Featuring 37L of storage space and an interior divider perfect for separating your gym shoes and sweat-soaked clothes from the rest of your gear, it’s a gym-goer’s dream bag.
The bag is made using a polyurethane-coated water-repellent fabric, with a polyester mesh and interior lining that maximizes ventilation to prevent smell build-up. It also features a dedicated laptop pocket sized to hold up to a 13” laptop, so you can head straight to the office once you’re finished with your run or lifting session.
Adidas is known for making hardcore, high-quality training gear, which makes this bag not only a great choice, but one you’ll instantly recognize from…well, every sports movie ever.
With the “adidas” logo emblazoned on the side, it’s perfect proof to everyone who sees it that you are a dedicated athlete.
The bag is made with a water-repellent fabric, with special water-resistance incorporated into the fabric at the base so you can leave your bag on any dirty, wet, or damp gym or locker room floor and trust your gear will stay dry. Best of all, it’s backed by a lifetime warranty to guarantee that you get only the best quality bag for your training sessions.
Keep it simple—and affordable—with this Nike gym bag. It’s not just one of the most budget-friendly bags on our list, it’s also one of the most versatile, with a spacious main compartment and a ventilated pocket so you can store your sweaty/wet gear and shoes.
Sling it over your shoulder, and you’ll be ready for any sprint, HIIT, CrossFit, running, marathon, or weightlifting training session.
It’s also a great companion to take on weekend camping trips, business travel, or holidays. You can fit plenty of stuff inside without over-stuffing it, and it always looks sleek and stylish.
Wherever you travel, whatever you need to pack, this Osprey duffel and backpack hybrid will keep up with you no problem. It’s designed to be carried by the handles or worn on your back like a backpack, and features easy-access storage that makes it a breeze to get at your packed items in a matter of seconds. You’ve even got pockets sized for water bottles, shaker bottles, or your travel coffee mug.
The bag is built from GRS-certified recycled materials, with the main body fashioned from fabrics that are bluesign-approved (can you say “eco-conscious”?).
The fabric is tough enough to shrug off impacts and abrasions like they’re no big deal, and you’ll find it is beautifully resistant to ripping or fraying. Given its size (45L), you won’t find many better-priced, more wallet-friendly bags on this or any other list.
For those days I want to travel light and unencumbered, this is the perfect bag . It has an 18L capacity and is just 18 inches wide, 11 inches tall, and 7.5 inches deep—ergo, the perfect fit for any gym locker, office workspace, or airline storage compartment.
The non-slip shoulder strap keeps it securely in place whether I’m running through the airport or zipping to and from the gym on my e-bike or motorized scooter.
It’s compact enough that I like to take it commuting, because I don’t have to worry about it smacking or bumping into people sharing the bus or train with me. And it even features a trolley sleeve so I can slide it over my luggage handles when traveling.
On the inside, you’ll find both a spacious main compartment and a separate shoe compartment that features an antimicrobial lining that is breathable to let any bad smells escape. But for guys like me who train and travel in the rain, you’ll be glad to know it’s fully waterproof so your gear stays dry even in a heavy downpour.
The interior mesh pockets and bottle holder make organization a breeze, but the main compartment has room enough to store your daily gym essentials.
And the final cherry on the sundae for me? To make sure my investment is safe, every Troubadour bag is backed by a 5-year warranty.
I picked up this bad boy when I was hardcore into lifting, and I haven’t regretted the purchase once.
Built by dedicated lifters for dedicated lifters, this is THE bag to buy if you spend 2+ hours a day at the gym.
It has everything I need: space for a 13” laptop so I can get some work done between training sessions, a sealed shoe compartment large enough for my size 13 shoes, dual bottle pockets, plenty of storage space for clothes and supplements, and even an external weightlifting belt attachment so I can carry around my favorite lifting belt without taking up precious storage space inside the bag.
After hauling it around for over two years, I’ve come to see that it’s built insanely tough—and backed by a lifetime warranty to prove it.
Size-wise, I appreciate that it’s available in both medium (35L) and large (51L) sizes, giving me options depending on how much I want to haul to the gym or around town.
For the price, I have yet to find many better, longer-lasting options.
YETI has long been one of my go-to brands thanks to the durability and versatility of their products. I’ve already got the YETI coolers, travel mugs, thermoses, and water bottle, so why not a gym bag, too?
The Crossroads is a wonderfully spacious bag. Its 40-liter capacity gives me room enough to throw in pretty much everything I need for my kickboxing workouts, including 16-ounce gloves, shin pads, wraps, braces, and supplements. The internal divider panels make it easy to organize everything so I can find what I need at a glance.
As with all YETI gear, I can trust that it’s built tough, using a 700-denier nylon that’s “expedition-grade”—a.k.a. resistant to water and abrasions. The GroundControl Base keeps it from being scuffed or scratched when I set it down on hard concrete or the gym floor.
Though the Crossroads is a bit on the pricier side compared to some of my other picks, it’s an investment I haven’t yet regretted once.
If I’m zipping out for a quick Yoga class or going for a run at the gym, I’ll typically pack the United by Blue Revolution 27L Mini Duffle. Its smaller size makes it wonderfully portable, but I still have room enough for my running shoes or a Yoga block, as well as a towel, water bottle, and other “bare essentials”.
The multiple interior and exterior pockets give me lots of space to store my wallet, phone, keys, headphone case, and other small items while I’m working out. Thanks to the padding inside the bag and on the strap, it’s comfortable to carry and offers good protection for my gym gear.
Best of all, it’s a bag that can stand up to the heavy rains and snows of British Columbia, thanks to its DWR coating and tough YKK zippers. It’s also one of the best-priced gym bags on my list.