Setting up a home gym is one of the best steps you can take for your physical (and financial!) health. Not only do you get to avoid sweaty machines, long lines and annoying fellow gym customers, but you can work out any time you like in total privacy.
Read on for the basics of setting up a fitness center. We’ve gathered the basic pieces of home gym equipment you’ll need to get a total-body workout.
A Quiet Place
Ideally, your home gym should be situated someplace where you can have relative peace and quiet. You may still want to blast your stereo, but you shouldn’t be interrupted by screaming children if possible. The purpose of a home gym is partially to save time, and interruptions waste time. Find a spare bedroom, a corner of the garage or even the basement – anyplace you can set up your home gym equipment and still have space to move around. In addition to traditional equipment, consider a full-length mirror (to check form and posture, not check yourself out!) and a large yoga mat or other pad for floor exercises.
Dumbbells are a classic for any home gym setup, but purchasing new sets in different weights as your fitness level rises can get costly. Instead, invest in a good-quality set of adjustable dumbbells. These sets are some of the best investments you can make when it comes to home gym equipment because they grow as you do. Be sure to find a quality, respected brand, as some cheaper versions have been known to come loose and drop a heavy weight unexpectedly.
If you’re not familiar with this ultra-versatile and cost-effective piece of home gym equipment, it’s time to do yourself a favor. These balls are great for many different types of exercises, including stretching, core strengthening and more. They’re relatively inexpensive, even when purchased from a fitness store (avoid the cheap varieties sold elsewhere – they can pop). They take up very little space, and are easy to move around. Stability balls come in different sizes, so be sure to choose one which is right for your height.
When it comes to setting up a smart collection of home gym equipment, large, expensive machines are a personal choice. For many people, they simply don’t make sense. Sure, they look nice and they promise loads of workout potential – but think hard about the chances that they’ll actually get used. On the other hand, for some people they make a lot of sense. For example, if you’re a die-hard jogger but you live in a cold climate and want a cold-weather option, you’ll probably get a lot of use out of a treadmill. Be sure you think these big decisions over carefully before making a huge purchase.