A home gym is one of the most if not the most convenient way to work out and bring yourself closer to the person you’d like to be. You don’t have to wait for other to finish their sets or feel somehow watched by other people working out. Additionally, you don’t have to take the bus or similar to get there, which makes it a lot easier to get up and start working out.
But very often Home Gyms doesn’t get used to the extend they could be. This might be due to external motivation e.g. being in the “contagious” atmosphere of a traditional gym or the fact that your Home Gym isn’t equipped well enough to satisfy the requirements to become the best version of yourself.
Therefore, we want to give you the perfect checklist to put your time and money to maximum use and create the best Home Gym possible:
There is nothing as effective and easy as using barbells for your workouts. Since you can use barbells for compound liftings, such as deadlifts, squads or bench-press this is the cheapest and most effective way to train your whole body. You can either go for regular barbells or Olympic barbells. Both allow you to progressively overload and therefore get the results you dreamed of.
Regular barbells are more for beginners since the pole itself doesn’t weigh as much as the Olympic barbells and they are cheaper than the Olympic version. I would recommend to choose the Olympic barbell and just take less extra weights, which is more cost effective than buying regular barbells and a high amount of extra weights. When you want to choose the barbell just for exercises with less weights such as overhead press the regular barbell is just as fine.
Olympic barbells are for the more advanced or as I say for the more motivated people. They measure 7 feet in length and are built especially for heavy lifting. If you acquire a cheap barbell set it usually comes with a Olympic barbell pole, which can hold up to 400 lbs. When you want to focus on compound lifting with heavy weights such as deadlifts and squads this one is the best choice to go for.
As I said barbells are the most important parts of your home gym. However, dumbbells are almost equally important. Sure they cannot reach the same effects for compound lifting as the barbells do, but are the perfect free-weight exercises to isolate specific muscle groups and get the maximum results. The best way is to get yourself a set of adjustable dumbbells with additional weights, so you can choose the perfect weight for every single exercise.
They are durable, ergonomically designed for convenient and usually come with padding to protect yourself from getting blisters. Therefore, you can start working out easily the next day or after one day of rest without having to worry about potential wounds on your hands. Additionally, they also come with a stand which makes storage easy and your Home Gym more structured in general (No one wants to have weights lying around the floor without any order). You can switch easily from weights between 5-30 lbs in a blink of an eye.
3.Racks are not bad either
Once you’ve got yourself a decent amount of barbells + weights and the same for dumbbells you are good to go. You can start doing a lot of exercises now, which should be challenging already especially for beginners and new members of the CrossFit society.
When you want to step it up a bit you should get yourself a power rack next. Sure the investment is a bigger one now and you need more space for that, but we’re building a home gym here so no excuses! First of all the rack gives you safety when you start lifting heavier weights and do not have a friend around, who can spot or help you in case you need it. By having the safety pins you can avoid any serious injury even when you lose strength and aren’t able to lift the weight anymore.
Some of them additionally include a dip and pull up bar, which is perfect to warm up or do some sets of exhausting body workouts. Especially your triceps and back are going to work hard on these kind of exercises and in later stages you can get a weight belt to add additional weight and make these exercises even more challenging.
When looking for a power rack I wouldn’t recommend you to take the cheapest one. Since it is an investment and you want it to have good quality and last for a decent amount of time I would start looking in the price segment between 500-600$. At this price you’ll easily find power racks, which satisfy the needs of an ordinary cross fit athlete.
Costlier racks come with more extras as like a pulley, pegs etc. but for the beginning a regular should be more than enough.
4.Bench to grow the chest
When you want to start doing inclined or declined chest exercises a bench is a must! Here it is very important, that you look for a bench with the appropriate weight capacity and the ability to easy adjust positions. BowFlex and Ironmaster are good addresses for durable and convenient weight benches.
Also, keep an eye on second hand products, lots of gyms are looking to sell old gear and sometimes offer for the perfect deal which huge discounts online. If you still don’t have the financial resources to get yourself a bench relax, it is not the most important equipment for your home gym. Furthermore, most of the seated exercises can also be on the floor and if you’ve got the skills why not just build one yourself? It’s straight forward and way more cost effective.
Check out for a guide to build your own bench press!
As you can see setting up your own home gym isn’t as complicated and difficult as one might think. To get started a set of barbells and dumbbells is enough and once you got tired of the reoccurring exercises or want to put more weight on you can get yourself a power rack and a bench.
Share your opinions and experiences about your home gym. What brands did you use? What exercises would you recommend for beginners?