If you want to create a gym from the comfort of your own home without shelling any extra money for expensive gym membership, or if you are short of time due to busy schedule, these workout gears will help you sweat it out at home without much to think around. Also, visiting gym can be overwhelming experience sometimes due to complicated workout equipment – which is difficult to understand for someone with beginner to intermediate level experience. This post will list down the best home gym equipment for your daily use with basic options first followed up with good-to-have items.
Guide to best home gym equipment
Now before we list down our top picks, there are certain features that we have considered to categorize the products accordingly.
Equipment that can build body resistance
It includes all those equipments which helps you to use your body weight as one of the resistive forces to strengthen the muscles. It is generally space friendly and budget friendly as well
Equipment that involves weight training
It is similar to body resistance exercise with some distinction related to focus more towards building up of your lean muscles and gives you more sculpted appearance. The equipments used for weight training can vary depending on whether you want to use free weights (which is space friendly) or if your inclination is more towards using machines which might require lot more space.
Equipment that ensures cardio workout
Cardio exercises are important part of any workout regime which can include brisk walking, jogging, sprinting, high intensity exercises, interval training, skipping rope and many more. Generally, the equipments used for cardio exercises can be pricey and can be spacious as well.
So, with all the above considerations, there are other considerations as well which you should ideally factor in before making final purchase. Firstly, what is the budget you are looking at? Secondly, do you have enough space to keep both gym equipments along with daily chores item. Finally, what specific goals have you set for your body and what do you intend to do at home? Once you have answer to all this, you can go ahead and look out for all the options
Best home gym equipment for resistance training
Resistance Bands (Resistance Training)
Resistance bands are somewhat different from weight training exercises. You might feel at ease when starting off but the real deal is towards the end of reps. While in weight training, you might feel heaviest at the beginning and then slowly muscle starts bearing down more load. In both these cases, the specific part of body is moving against resistance which will strengthen the core of the muscles, but weight training is to be used for increasing muscle mass while resistance bands is meant to be used for strengthening lean muscle. There are multiple body parts that can be targeted using a resistance band – Triceps extension, front squat, leg bridge, bicep curl, shoulder external rotation, side plan leg lift, fire hydrant for glutes, donkey kick, squat with side raise and hip abduction. More information on resistance bands can be found here – Best resistance bands
Barbells (Resistance Training)
Barbells are long metal bars which can be used as resistance for strength training exercises. Mostly, it is used in variety of exercises ranging from body-building, weight-lifting and powerlifting. The weight of the barbell can be anywhere between 15-20 Kg as standard weight. When compared to dumb bells which allows great range of motions, barbells are generally to be used when you want to lift heavier weights.
Kettlebells (Cardio/ Resistance)
Kettlebells is a great way to tone up your entire body and is considered one of the toughest exercises if done properly. The shape of the kettlebell is such that the majority of weight is facing away from your body and hence it engages multiple muscles during movements. Because of its explosive nature, it is considered as both cardio and resistance training.
Best home gym equipment for weight training
Bench press is full body compound exercise that is generally used to gain upper body strength mostly for chest, shoulders and triceps. For an effective outcome, bench press has to be done 3 to 4 times in a week. It has to be combined with barbell mostly for barbell bench press kind of heavy lifts. The key thing for this exercise is to hold the weight for some time which will grind you to the fullest and make your muscle more advanced.
Dumbbells (Weight/ Resistance)
If you want to build your muscles, just go for dumbbells which is mostly used for biceps curl, chest flyes, triceps curl and shoulder raises. It is one of the most affordable and must-have equipment for weight-training exercises without occupying too much of space. Dumbbells are better than using barbells if you want to focus on specific muscle with lesser weight. For heavy weight training, just go for barbell.
Best home gym equipment for Cardio exercises
Weighted jump rope Or Skipping rope (Cardio)
Jump rope is a unique training cardio exercise which is quite versatile and engages you both physically and mentally. The good thing about jump rope is it does not entertain monotonous attitude of doing one particular exercise for long duration, but in fact it strives you to engage completely with all your effort for short duration of exercise which is quite effective. In fact, burning calories with a ten-minute workout using jump rope is equivalent to half an hour running on treadmill. More information on jump rope can be found in our separate post which can be found here – Best jumping rope.
Balance ball (Cardio)
Balance ball is an effective exercise ball that requires your body to balance itself thereby activating trunk muscles and engaging your core muscles, thus increasing core body strength, improving overall posture of the body and overall power. It is mostly used in physical therapy and athletic training exercises. Fitness experts and physiotherapists recommends sitting on balance ball instead of chair in order to maintain a good posture. If you are finding it difficult to exercise with balance ball, it is recommended to deflate it slightly for better experience. It can occupy some space as well depending on the size, so that factor must be considered before making purchasing decision.
AB Wheel Roller (Cardio)
At first glance, AB roller may look like a simple device but when you jump on it, you will come to know that it’s an advanced tool which delivers next level core challenge. It is one of the toughest and most effective tools for your six-pack abs. AB roller not only engages abs, but also strengthens up your erector spinae, latissimus dorsi, deltoids, chest, triceps and biceps. It is recommended for someone with good core and upper body strength to effectively do the ab wheel exercise, else you won’t be able to make most of this tool. Still, it can easily be accommodated in your limited space and is one of the recommended toolkits for home gym equipment.
Pullup bar (Cardio)
Pullup bar can be normally set up in a doorway of your home. Pull-up exercises is a well-known form of compound exercises which can work on multiple muscles from back, forearm, rhomboids and other important parts of the body too. Pullup exercises builds the strength of your entire upper body naturally and you can do it on an everyday basis without going to gym. Pullup bar exercises are to be used if you are at intermediate to advanced level. It is generally tougher and your arms can easily give out in few reps only.
Indoor cycle bike (Cardio)
Indoor cycling is a great form of cardio exercise which can help you shed fat, improve muscle endurance and heart health. You can set the intensity level of the exercise as per your comfort which provides adrenaline rush and releases endorphins which relieves body stress levels and enhances body immune system. Often people who are recovering from orthopedic injuries can use indoor cycling from the comfort of the home and recover quickly with minimal impact.
Punching bag (Cardio)
Punching bag in your workout regime can improve your fitness levels and overall health to a great level. When you punch bags your body engages all core muscles and strengthens your stamina with each punch. It is a great way to lose overall body fat at once. The key things to focus while playing around with punching bag is technique, speed, power and duration of the boxing round.
Treadmill is an indoor sporting equipment which allows you to do both walking and running to burn those extra calories from the comfort of your home. To increase the intensity of cardio level, you can also increase the incline and then walk. Usually a professional athlete would go for elliptical treadmills but at a beginner level, you can go for any treadmill which furnishes basic requirements of walking and running. As a good practice, you can gradually increase the amount of time you are running on a treadmill from 15 minutes to 30 minutes at least for 3-4 days a week.
Other good to have equipments for home gym
Yoga mat is an essential part of any workout regime that helps you perform yoga or any other exercises without having any direct contact with the ground. It is made up of special fabrications that prevents slipping of hands or body due to sweat. Yoga mat is usually around 6 feet long and can have varied thickness. Normally it is PVC made, but there are other kinds of natural rubber materials as well which provides better traction and is environment friendly as well. It is both cheap and space friendly compared to other home gym equipments. If you have made a commitment of practicing exercises and yoga on a daily basis, then yoga mat is sure shot pick.
Stepper provides low impact exercises that can strengthen up your bones and joints along with the benefits of cardio workout. Generally, it comes with risers that you can put in to make stepper lower or higher according to your intensity level. Stepper is bound to improve your stability, leg strength, overall balance of the body, burns calories and reduces stress levels.
Foam roller is a great way of doing exercise both in pre and post workout sessions. Also, it can be helpful to increase blood flow, back-pain, improves joint rate of motion, decreases soft tissue density, relaxes tight muscles, relieves muscle soreness and back-pain and helps you to relax. If you involve foam roller in your workout regime, you will feel less sore in the days following.
Final recommendation on home gym equipment
Obviously with multiple options at hand, you might buy certain equipments that does not necessarily serve the wholesome purpose of the change you were looking forward to. It is recommended to go for combination of equipments serving common purpose, and go slow rather than bulk buying at once. Hopefully, we have narrowed down the search for your home equipments in this post. Have a great day and fitter future!