Fitness Gifts That Keep on Giving

We're here to help if you're searching for the perfect gifts for the health- and fitness-minded people on your shopping list. Look for these sure-to-please options, which cost $10 to $1,500, at stores, in mail-order catalogs or online.

Personal trainer

Six sessions with a personal trainer or sports pro. Most people who work out can benefit from sessions with a trainer, who can help them fine-tune their regimen and goals.

High-tech protective eyewear

A must-have for racquetball, tennis and squash players. Look for durable, wraparound frames.

New workout clothes

Opt for stylish name brands or bare-bones, rugged active wear, depending on the recipient.

Heart-rate monitor

A thoughtful gift for anyone into precision timing or who has a heart or health condition that requires monitoring.

Reflective vest, gloves and belt

Must-have safety gear for anyone who exercises outdoors at dusk or dawn.

Gear bags

These make good gifts for people who work out at a gym or health club, play tennis or racquetball, or skate. Look for bags made of durable material. Small-zippered pockets are helpful for storing wallets, keys, glasses and other items.

Lightweight snowshoes

Anyone who walks in the spring, summer and fall can snow-shoe in the winter with easy-to-use walker-weight snowshoes.

Sunglasses

Walkers, runners, golfers and tennis players can always use sunglasses. Sturdy frames with wraparound earpieces are best for active people. Lenses should be polarized and block 90 percent to 100 percent of UV rays.

Fleece vests or jackets

Walkers, runners and cross-country skiers will appreciate the warmth and versatility of front-zipped fleece jackets.

Fanny packs

Packs with large inner compartments, zippered outside pockets and places to hold water bottles are the most useful. Padded back panels and quick-release waistbands are helpful features.

Exercise videotapes

Hundreds of videos feature celebrities and exercise experts. Choose tapes that match the recipient's interests and fitness level.

State-of-the-art swim goggles

Lap swimmers need anti-fog, leak-proof goggles.

High-performance sports watches

Give watches that are rugged and water-resistant to 100 meters and that glow in the dark. A lap-timer function is a nice extra.

Home-exercise equipment

Many people prefer the privacy and flexibility of working out at home. Those who do may want a weighted jump rope, chin-up bar, dumbbells, resistance rubber bands, exercise mat, portable steps, stationary bicycle, treadmill, upright rider or stair climber.

High-tech pedometers

The walkers on your gift list can use pedometers that monitor time, distance, calories burned and number of steps.

Fitness-log computer program

These gifts are great for people who like to track their progress and performance. Be sure you get one that matches the recipient's operating-system requirements.

Personal water-carrying systems

Bikers, hikers, snowboarders and other outdoor fanatics rave about these systems, which help keep them hydrated while they exercise.

Sports sandals

Go low tech for those who want locker-room footwear or high tech for those into kayaking.

Sports-store gift certificate

A certificate from a favorite sports store is always a safe bet.

Tickets to a professional sports event

Get the best seats you can afford.

Magazine subscription

Choose a publication that focuses on the recipient's favorite sports activity.

Heat and cold packs

Flexible heat packs that can be warmed in microwave ovens provide long-lasting, penetrating heat for sore muscles and stiff necks. Some packs can also be frozen and used to treat pain and sprains.

Trial membership at a health club

Buy a one-, three- or six-month membership at a club convenient to the recipient.

Gift certificate for a one-hour massage

Pamper someone who's physically active.

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