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Building a home gym is an exciting and fun experience that will ultimately help you grow into a better version of yourself. A home gym will help you develop healthy habits, save time and money, all while achieving your fitness goals.
We know that getting started may look overwhelming, especially with so many options available on the market. While it may be tempting to switch to a more expensive, less personalized approach to fitness (joining a gym), once you read this article you’ll see why building a home gym is the better, simpler alternative.
Ultimately, it all boils down to your personal needs and fitness goals. Whether you’re a fitness fanatic or a total beginner looking to set things in motion, there’s a way around every challenge and end goal. Let’s explore each option below!
Why Are Home Gyms So Popular Compared To a Gym Membership
Home gyms are becoming increasingly popular for numerous reasons, such as:
- They provide a convenient and affordable way to stay active. You get to save money and time with no back-and-forth commute.
- They offer a more private, personalized experience, allowing you to work out in your own space, on your own time.
- You can work out whenever you want without worrying about how late it is or what time it is outside. It’s always convenient because you have the entire gym in your home.
- There’s no need to worry about being judged by other people at a gym because there won’t be any.
- You’ll find that using the same equipment over and over again will allow you to see results in that muscle group faster than ever before.
The best part is that you can practice at your own pace, without having to worry about peak hours and missed appointments.
Just spend 30 minutes each day working out at home instead. All it takes is a little bit of time and dedication every day until those results start showing up.
There are many different types of home gyms available to suit your needs. You can choose from machines that target specific muscles or create an entire workout area with all kinds of equipment.
Don’t worry—we’ll go through all that in a moment.
Home Gym Equipment: Good Gear vs. Bad Gear
When choosing the right equipment for your setup, there are a few key factors to consider:
1. Durability: look for items with sturdy metals or plastics, as well as rubber grips on handles and other spots where hands may come into contact with them during exercise.
2. Adjustability: good equipment will allow you to adjust the height and width of different pieces of equipment so they fit your body perfectly, while bad equipment will require you to buy multiple sizes of each piece if you want it to fit correctly (then store them all).
3. Ease of Use: if an item isn’t easy enough for you (or someone else) to operate with minimal skill required then it’s probably not worth purchasing at all.
Disclaimer: don’t buy second-hand equipment, as no one can really know how long it’s been used or what harsh chemicals the previous owners used to clean it before it ended up in your possession.
5 Types of People in Sports: Pick The Best Home Gym For Your Goals
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states that sports and recreational injuries from workouts and exercises are approaching the number 500,000/ a year.
Therefore, when selecting equipment for your own home gym, it is important to consider your current fitness level before setting any goals.
- For absolute newbies: it’s best to start with basic equipment such as a multipurpose smith machine for beginners. If you’re tight on the budget, opt for a jump rope, resistance bands, and a yoga mat.
- For more advanced exercisers: look for equipment that can provide a full-body workout, such as a pull-up bar, a squat rack, a home gym machine, and a leg press. For budget-friendly options, try a rowing machine, kettlebells, and a medicine ball.
Now, if you want to create a home gym that meets your fitness objectives, here are five creative options to consider depending on which category you fit into:
1. The Full-Body Workout Enthusiast – Best Reviewed Home Gym Gear For Full-Body Exercises
If you’re the type of person that stays active in their daily life or has a job that doesn’t allow for much time off but wants to get a full workout at least a couple of times a week, this section is for you.
Regardless of your job or other responsibilities, it’s essential that you get your strength training in for optimum health levels.
If your goal is to get toned or lose weight, you might want to consider one of our best home gym options: Body-Solid Free-Weight Leverage Gym. It has a squat attachment and a flat incline-decline bench integrated into its system, so you can kickstart your full-body workouts right away.
This machine is a smart home gym choice, as it targets multiple areas of exercise at once. Keep in mind that this one is a bit large in size, so it would sit well in a garage gym.
- If you’re short on your home gym space, this multifunctional compact home gym piece is an option you should seriously consider.
- If budget is an impediment at this time in your life, check out some other best-reviewed full-body workout gym equipment pieces we’ve put together for you!
Nevertheless, you can always try to work out on your yoga mat using a full-length mirror, although the results may differ.
2. The Jogger & The Marathonist – Best Reviewed Home Gym Pieces For Runners
This one goes without introduction. Are you a fan of cardio? Do you love running, going for a walk, or maybe you’re a marathoner? You’re in the right place!
Here are two of our best-reviewed home gym pieces of equipment for runners like you:
- The TrueForm Runner Treadmill: it is a rather expensive option, but worth the price tag. This treadmill is not motorized, but it works based on the athlete’s pace and movement. It has the highest settings available, simulating the road perfectly, which makes it our best home gym treadmill recommendation.
- The Progear 190 Manual Treadmill: this one sits on the other side of the price spectrum, but comes with far fewer integrations and options. While it does the job, this treadmill is not the most advanced piece of equipment.
So, which one is it going to be?
If you haven’t decided yet, check out our full list of treadmills worth your attention. We’ve tested and compared all of them, so you don’t have to.
3. The Muscle Builder – Best Reviewed Home Gym Equipment For Strength Training
If you’re in the game of building muscle and getting stronger, check out our top choices for a home gym that targets all major body areas:
- You know what they say: don’t skip leg day! For starters, you’re going to need a leg press, so this is the one we recommend for lower muscle strength training.
- Adjustable dumbbells: they’re essential for anyone who trains the upper part in their workout. When it comes to making the most of your home gym space, weight lifting using dumbbells is a good option.
- Pull-up bar: you can install this one right above your doors. That’s where pull-up bars usually go, which makes a pull-up bar another smart option when you have limited space or little to no floor space.
Nevertheless, a smith machine is always a good idea when it comes to home gyms, as it can target multiple areas of your body at once and aid you in your body workout.
A smith machine can help you get a more efficient workout and develop muscles more evenly than with free weights or other weight training techniques.
4. The Motivated Newbie – Best Reviewed Home Gym Equipment Overall
There are a lot of options out there for home gyms, but we think we’ve found the one you’re looking for as a beginner who is ready to change their life for the better. The Bowflex Revolution is one of our favorites, as we consider it the overall best home gym equipment.
Bowflex offers a wide range of equipment, on-demand classes, trainer-led workouts, and other useful resources for anyone who takes their fitness objectives seriously and doesn’t just count the calories burned.
Overall, this machine has a series of key features that make the difference.
5. The Pro-Athlete & The Sports Enthusiast – Best Reviewed Home Gym Setup For The Dedicated Fitness Fanatic
If you’re looking for a home gym that’s going to take your training to a whole new level, you’re going to need some serious home gym machines.
Here are some of our recommendations for a complete setup, similar to a commercial gym:
- A weight bench: the one from Rogue is a budget-friendly weight bench, while the Marcy MD857 Diamond Elite Olympic Weight Bench with an integrated squat rack is a more functional and robust choice.
- An inversion table for back stretching and decompression
- A pull-up bar
- A leg press
- A home gym power rack such as the Rogue R-6 Power Rack (with free-weight barbells)
- Any dip bar
For cardio training:
- The Max Trainer for HIIT training
Congratulations! You know now why home gyms are a better alternative to traditional gyms and also just got your hands on all the resources you need to get started with building your very own compact gym.
Instead of driving to the gym and working out with dozens of other people, consider investing in your private space to exercise and have time more time for yourself or your family members.
As a pro tip: It’s always a good idea to consult a fitness professional or even an online tutorial from a certified expert before setting up a home gym, as they can provide advice and help you get started with your fitness journey at home.
To ensure you get value for money when buying gym equipment, make sure to check out our all-in-one free resource and do proper research before shopping.
Nadia is a USA-HomeGym.com Senior Editor with 15 years+ experience in the health, supplement and nutrition niches. Nadia became a health & fitness evangelist after rebuilding her gut health in 2008 using the Weston A. Price method. She developed a Facebook group that grew to more than 15,000 members sharing information on diet for allergy reduction, eczema & psoriasis cessation. Since 2011, Nadia has been an avid stair climber, achieving race times in the top 5% of her age group and maintaining average times of 3’40 – 3’55 minutes per 12 floors.