There’s never been a better time to set up a home gym than this very moment and for obvious reasons. That also means distinguishing the best exercise equipment and gym gear from the rest. We’re talking weight benches, rowing machines, knee raise stations, resistance bands, and more. Given the cost of most gym memberships, you’ll likely save money in the long run, no matter how much gear you buy. Here is the best in-home gym equipment.
Setting Up Your Home Gym
Naturally, the nearest gym has a few advantages over your domestic space. However, if you take a conscious approach toward exercise equipment and home gym sets, you can still leave that membership behind. Before making your first purchase, consider the following:
- Cost – Buy only the equipment you can afford and if you’re tight for cash, supplement your fitness routine with bodyweight exercises and outdoor cardio (jogging, hiking, biking, etc).
- Function – Determine which home gym gear serves the most function in relation to your personal goals.
- Space – Don’t just take physical space into account, but the equipment designs as well. For instance, a lot of home gym gear can be folded up and stored away for later use.
Features of a Good Home Gym
We won’t waste too much of your time telling you how to set up a home gym. What we will say is that you want to strike the perfect balance between layout, flooring, aesthetics, and construction. More to the point, an ideal home gym will feature the following components:
- Quality gym gear
- A lack of overall clutter
- Proper surface
In summary, you want modern exercise equipment and enough physical room to move around. You also want a proper surface like an exercise mat, which will prevent skidding and protect the flooring beneath it.
Best Home Gym Exercise Equipment At Home
Treadmill exercises provide exceptional cardiovascular exercise that can significantly improve heart health. In fact, treadmill workouts are a popular form of cardio exercise due to the ability to maintain a steady heart rate throughout the entire exercise. This can be particularly beneficial to individuals with cardiovascular issues or those with high cholesterol. Treadmill exercises are effective at increasing heart rate to a healthy level, so they are also very beneficial as a warm-up exercise. Elevating your heart rate to a healthy level will enable you to perform other exercises, such as weight training or other cardio exercises, with increased safety and success.
Like many cardio workouts, treadmill exercises engage multiple muscle groups to provide a full-body workout. The leg muscles bear the brunt of the work during a treadmill workout but the abdomen, back, buttocks, and arm muscles are also engaged. Maintaining proper posture while running on the treadmill will engage core muscles even further and provide a more well-rounded workout. Additionally, pairing the treadmill exercise with light strength training will help engage arm muscles during the workout. Many people choose to hold weights while exercising on the treadmill to further increase the intensity of the workout.
Resistance training is vital to optimal health and fitness, and Edwards notes that among other things, it improves balance, blood glucose management, sleep, heart tissue health, metabolic rate and body composition. “Dumbbells are great for strength training, specifically loading the skeletal system to improve bone density,” she explains. “They also challenge the muscular system to enhance lean mass, metabolism, and ultimately function.”
Another benefit to using dumbbells in your strength workouts: Unilateral training. Working out with dumbbells helps to balance strength since they provide equal load to both sides of the body. Dumbbells can be the ideal external resistance when doing isolation exercises for specific muscle groups—like the biceps in your arms, and they’re just as useful for multi-planar movements—such as walking lunges—to work several muscle groups simultaneously.
Kettlebells require you to practice ballistic exercises that combine strength, cardio, and flexibility training for a full body workout. They’ll add extra weight while doing squats, twists, or swings, which help you build strength but also up your cardio. They also improve range of motion while burning fat.
Kettlebell exercises target multiple muscle groups that help with everyday tasks and daily life. For example, the Russian twist with a kettlebell improves both back and core strength, which will help with posture, as well as your ability to balance and lift heavy items.
Kettlebells are small, and you only need one or two to train you entire body. Because of their size and shape, they are easy to store and carry to and from the gym if desired.
Kettlebell exercises offer a wide range of movements that target every muscle group for a total body workout. There are many exercises that can be combined in various ways to keep your everyday workout routine interesting.
Doorway Pull Up Bar
Installing a pull up bar in your room is an efficient idea to get more exercise into your daily life. The pull up bar is meant to encourage you to perform pull up exercises, exercises that are characterized by an upper body compound pulling action. The usual motion involved in a pull up is that your body is suspended by your arms while your hands are gripping a fixed bar. You then pull your body up using your arms until your head gets to be higher than your hands and your elbows are bent. A properly executed pull up relies on not swinging your body at all, but depends on solely your upper body power
Pull ups are a compound exercise due to the fact that you need more than one joint to perform them; similarly, you get to work out more than one muscle with each repetition. Most of the work during a standard pull up is focused on your lat muscles, yet at the same time, a secondary exercise is also given to your biceps, rhomboids, traps, chest and forearms. In this way, you can see how a pull up exercises a lot of muscles.
The ab wheel—you’ve seen it featured in infomercials and there’s probably one lying around in the corner of your gym. Some of you may think it’s a gimmick or even dangerous, but when used correctly it’s one of the best tools to strengthen your core.
Ab Wheel Rollouts—the primary exercise performed with an ab wheel—are a form of anti-extension core training. As you roll forward, your abs work overtime to keep your back from arching into extension.
Ab Wheel Rollouts provide a better ab workout than traditional flexion exercises, creating stronger and more defined abs—if improving your looks is a goal. Also, strong abs protect your spine and prevent energy leaks, which sap power and strength from your sports skills.
To protect your spine, gradually strengthen your core with beginner Rollout progressions before performing more advanced Rollouts. To get started, follow the progression below. Complete each variation with perfect form before moving on to the next exercise.
Thick Yoga Mat Fitness & Exercise Mat
There are many benefits to using an exercises mat. Benefits of an exercise mat
- The padding protects your knees, elbows, and tailbone during floor work
- Gives you the necessary balance in Yoga and protects hips and tailbones in Pilates.
- An exercise mat is long and will accommodate full-length prone exercises
- Keeps the floor and carpets clean by keeping sweat away from it
- Can be doubled over or rolled up to provide additional padding
- More portable and storable as compared to thicker puzzle-board floor mats
- Closed-cell foam is tough, durable, easy to clean, and doesn’t “dent” like other materials
Pull up Assist Band Exercise Resistance Bands
A classic pullup involves gripping an overhead bar and using your upper body strength to raise your body until your chin is above the bar. It’s considered to be a difficult exercise for most people, partly because you must overcome gravity to lift your body.
Benefits of regular pullups
The benefits of pullups include:
- improved grip strength
- enhanced fitness ability
- enhanced mental health
As part of a strength training routine, pullups can also improve:
- bone strength
- overall quality of life
- symptoms of chronic conditions
Since pullups are a compound exercise, they use multiple joints and muscles, which allows for great muscle growth and fat loss.
Benefits of assisted pullups
Assisted pullups let you build strength and perfect your movement and body positioning.
While these variations may not give you the same strength as regular pullups, you’ll still be gaining strength and targeting the same muscles. Plus, you can work on:
- building grip strength
- improving your stability
- perfecting your form
As long as you’re improving your fitness level and moving toward your goals, you can count the variations as progress.
Incorporate these exercises into your strength-training routine. For each variation, do 2 to 5 sets of 3 to 8 repetitions.
Resistance band pullups
This exercise trains you to use proper form, build strength, and improve stability. It also teaches you to learn the correct movement pattern. Maintain straight arms as you lower down and a bend in your knees.
Start with a strong resistance band and gradually use lighter bands. As you progress, you can place one knee or foot in the band at a time.
There’s a reason why the Swiss ball is also called a gym ball, Pilates ball or yoga ball. Maintaining core strength is extremely important, as these are the muscles in your body that stabilise and support all your movements.
The three muscle groups in your midsection are:
- Deep abdominal muscles (Transverse Abdominus)
- Back muscles that support the lumbar spine (Tultifidus)
- Lower back muscles that maintain spinal and pelvic balance (Quadratus Lumborum)
Training with an exercise ball, whether during Pilates, yoga or simple stretching exercises, is an excellent way to work this group of hard-to-reach, deep muscles.
The benefits of jumping rope are many. Here are a few you might not have known about
- Improves Coordination
- Decreases Foot and Ankle Injuries
- Burns Major Calories
- Completely Portable and Fun
- Improves Bone Density
- Improves Cardiovascular Health
- Improved Breathing Efficiency
- Makes You Smarter
- Improves Your Ability to Stay Calm