Redesigning your home space into a home gym has become all the rage in recent years, especially if you can sneak in a workout during your lunch hour when working from home. But in order to properly transform your space, you’ll need to stock up on the best home gym equipment. So where do you start? “It’s important to accept that you are building a home gym, not a commercial fitness center,” says Doug Sklar, a certified personal trainer and founder of PhilanthroFIT in New York City. Simply put, less is more in your home gym. A streamlined repertoire of equipment can reap the same benefits as a machine-packed gym floor. After all, how much do you really need for a solid workout?
Sometimes one single piece of cardio equipment—like your beloved treadmill—can give your home gym the edge. Roll out a yoga mat and toss in a dumbbell or two, and things will begin shaping up.
Before you narrow it down to the best home gym equipment to purchase, consider what your training sessions require for a workout boost without invading your space. This can save you dollars on impulse buys that may sit gathering dust.
We scoured a list of products recommended by several fitness experts—and added a few choices of our own—to help you select the top gear for your home gym. From high-tech machines designed to level-up your cardio to portable accessories that will leave your muscles quivering, these are the best pieces of home workout equipment to amplify your space.
Best All-In-One Home Workout Equipment
A Compact Package That Rivals A Gym Weight Room
The Tempo Studio puts an entire weight room, trainer included, into one compact package. The main component is a self-standing touchscreen for queuing up classes anytime, anywhere. But what really sets it apart is its AI, which tracks your moves via 3D sensors and gives you real-time feedback on your form. There’s also automatic rep counting, weight guidance and personalized training plans that’ll help you make the most of your workout, as if you were working with a live trainer.
The Tempo Studio is available in three different packages, from the basic Starter set to the weight room-worthy Pro package. To stream workouts, you’ll have to purchase a Tempo membership, too (it’s $39 a month and offers up to six accounts). That said, both the app and the entire Tempo Studio are eligible for a 30-day trial period so you can feel confident about your investment.
Best Home Gym Equipment For Rowers
A Smart Rower That Offers An Immersive Experience
Although rowing machines are known for giving an upper-body burn, they also offer total-body training. That makes them an excellent alternative if you’re looking for something beyond the typical treadmill or elliptical. And in the overarching realm of cardio machines, the fan-favorite Hydrow Rower is giving Peloton a run (spin?) for its money.
People love the Hydrow for its immersive and realistic rowing experience. Between the motion of the rowing, the machine’s built-in HD screen and the challenging but scenic Hydrow workouts (membership sold separately for $38 a month), outdoor enthusiasts can get a taste of nature while working out indoors.
Best Home Workout Equipment For Total Body Training
An All-In-One System That Offers Dozens Of Exercises
As long as you have a solid interior door, a hook screwed into a stud or a sturdy tree branch, you can execute dozens of different exercises—every one of them tailored to your abilities in terms of strength and mobility—using TRX straps.
Danielle Hirt, an NASM-certified personal trainer and RRCA-certified running coach with Formula Running Center says: “TRX straps offer a total body workout for any level. They’re a great foundational piece of equipment because all workouts can be modified. TRX straps are also great for recovery and mobility training, allowing you to use your own body weight to stretch your muscles more than you can on the floor alone.”
Jess Glazer, former celebrity personal trainer and physical education instructor, adds that she’s “also a huge fan of the TRX home suspension system because it allows you to focus on all body parts and a variety of workouts from cardio and plyometrics to strength and stability.”
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Best Home Workout Equipment For Cardio-Enthusiasts
A Gym-Like Option That Won’t Clutter Your Space
An elliptical is a form of low-impact cardio that can be “good for those with knee, ankle or back issues that find running uncomfortable or painful,” Sklar says. To choose the right one, Albert Matheny, R.D., C.S.C.S., co-founder of SoHo Strength Lab, recommends basing your decision on what you’ve liked using at the gym and the features you’ll most likely need for an impactful workout.
The Bowflex Max Trainer M9 delivers all the extras, including smart features for an efficient and powerful workout. Not only is it sleek in its award-winning design (it received the Plus X Award across five categories), it also boasts 20 resistance levels, 4-grip handlebars, heart rate hand grips and a Bluetooth armband to track your heart rate and other metrics. Bluetooth speakers allow your favorite songs to blare as you workout. It also has bragging rights to an HD touchscreen (Wi-Fi enabled) to catch up on your streaming.
A JRNY membership gives you access to on-demand classes as well as 200+ scenic routes to inspire your workout. Rather than pay upfront, BestBuy has the option to pay in installments of $83 a month (over 24 months).
Best Home Workout Equipment For Running And Walking
A Bestselling Treadmill At A Great Price Point
If you have the space, a treadmill can be a great piece of cardio equipment to have at home. “Look for durability above all else,” Sklar advises. “Treadmills take a pounding, and they’re not cheap. Investing in something with strong reviews on longevity with minimal repair will give you a solid return on investment.” Another important thing to consider, if you like to go fast: Check the machine’s speed capacity. “Ability to incline and simulate hills is also a great perk, and fairly standard,” Sklar says.
The NordicTrack T Series is an Amazon bestseller featuring 10% OneTouch incline, belt speeds up to 10 mph and a foldable design for easy storage. Most notable, though, are its smart capabilities. It has a built-in 10-inch touch screen (there’s also the 5-inch screen model, if you want to save a couple hundred bucks) and is compatible with iFit, a service that lets you stream workouts. As mentioned above, an iFit subscription costs extra, but this package includes a free 30-day membership so you (and the fam) can try it out.
Best Home Workout Equipment For Ballistic Training
Vinyl-Wrapped Kettlebells That Won’t Ruin Your Floors
Plenty of people love ballistic and strength training with kettlebells thanks to their versatility. While you can use them as free weights, you can also easily swing kettlebells during jumping and explosive exercises. “If you do a lot of movements like planes and snatches, and train with kettlebells more often, you’ll want to look at buying three or four weights of standard,” says Matheny.
Another thing to consider: your floors. Kettlebells are often made of cast iron which, while incredibly durable, can damage floors if handled roughly. Kettlebells from Yes4All run from 5 to 50 pounds with vinyl coating to help protect your flooring.
Best Home Gym Equipment For Low-Impact HIIT
A Mini Trampoline That’s Easy On Joints
Jumping on a trampoline that’s specifically designed for workouts—rebounding, as some call it—sets your heart racing and torches calories, fast. Whether it’s a HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workout or challenging your balance with weights, it’s fun. The BCAN 40-inch mini trampoline is foldable to one-quarter of an inch (ideal for popping under the bed) and safety tested for up to 330 pounds.
It also has a heavy-duty handlebar (foam covered for grip) that adjusts to four levels, closed anti-scratch steel springs and a 40-inch bounce surface, providing plenty of space for a bouncy workout.
One customer commented: “Easy to assemble and sturdy. I hate exercising, this makes it fun and I actually look forward to my time on it!”
Best Home Gym Equipment For Strength Training
One Piece Of Equipment That Takes The Place Of Five
Glazer calls adjustable dumbbells “great at home equipment because they don’t take up a lot of space and can be used for almost any type of strength workout.”
Flybird’s adjustable dumbbell effectively eliminates the need for five sets of dumbbells, saving you space and money too. You can adjust each weight to as little as 5 pounds or as much as 25 pounds, with myriad incremental options between the minimum and maximum. If you need more weight, there’s also a 55-pound option.
Best Home Gym Equipment For Core Training
Simple Accessories That Help With Core, Strength And Balance
You can use gliding discs on carpeted or hard surfaces to help with core training, strength training and/or balance training, which enhances core and muscle strength in and of itself. Hirt advises gliding disc users to “activate your core by incorporating these lightweight discs into your routine. By adding a balance challenge you can increase the intensity of your workout without adding impact.”
Inexpensive and compact, gliding discs are worth considering even for occasional use, and you can tuck them away pretty much anywhere. They’re also super portable for continuing your core training when you’re on the road.
Best Home Workout Equipment For Beginner Yogis
A Yoga Kit To Kick-Start Your Practice
If you’re new to the world of yoga, a quality yoga mat and accessories are essential in elevating your practice. And it doesn’t need to be flashy. Gaiam’s beginner kit is $30 and includes a 4mm colorful mat (latex-free), foam block and a yoga strap—along with a one-hour yoga workout to get you started.
As your skills develop, you can purchase add-ons when you need them—yoga balls, knee pads and grippy socks included. But as you begin your journey to gaining the title of ‘yogi,’ save on the clutter and narrow it down to the necessities.
Best Home Workout Equipment For Advanced Yogis
A Yoga Mat That Stands Up To Sweat
With nothing more than your body and a yoga mat, you can execute hundreds of exercises, from planks to lunges and crunches to yoga poses, safely and comfortably. Glazer encourages exercise using your body as the gear, saying: “I personally believe you can have incredibly effective workouts at home with your own body weight. Being a competitive gymnast my entire life, I know the importance, power and function our bodies have on their own.”
This yoga mat from Lululemon has a moisture-absorbing top layer, a rubber base that prevents slipping and an antimicrobial additive that protects it from mold and mildew. Note: It’s made of latex, so people with natural rubber or latex allergies should avoid use.
Best Home Gym Equipment For Lower Body Training
Resistance Bands To Target Every Muscle Group
If you’re in a pinch for space or plan to workout in your yard, resistance bands pack a weighty punch for strength training. Veick Resistance Bands come in a pack of five, each with a different width and a total tension ranging between 8-125 pounds.
One of the main advantages is you can alternate between muscle groups in a flash and challenge your entire body, such as a squat overhead press to bicep curl. In fact, your exercise catalog is endless. And don’t forget to use them to stretch out from head to toe after.
Lightweight for transporting, compact for storing, made from natural latex and skin friendly, these resistance bands more than pay for themselves.
How We Chose The Best Home Gym Equipment
We’ve conducted thorough research to find the best home-gym equipment to stock up your space. Aside from combing through customer and expert reviews, we also spoke to industry professionals for their scoop on what to invest in.
This article is reviewed regularly to bring you updated availability, prices and ratings. We also re-evaluate the selected products to bring you the best options to level-up your home gym. This story was last updated in November 2022.
What’s The Best Home Gym Equipment Brand?
The home gym equipment market is a treasure trove of brands such as Peloton, Mirror, Tempo and Hydrow touting sleek products to streamline your fitness space. But these brands can rack up a hefty bill. Truth be told, the price of equipment only reflects its quality to an extent. There are plenty of lesser-known home exercise bikes on the market that compete with big brand names for less money, and the same goes other home fitness products. Rather than splurging on high-end gym equipment for the sake of brand recognition, think about the layout of your home gym, what types of exercise spark your motivation and the essential pieces you want to feature in your gym, while sticking to your budget.
What Equipment Is Most Essential For A Home Gym?
If you’re carving out a design for your home gym, think about the layout and where equipment can fit without overwhelming your space. Then ask yourself—what do I want to achieve from exercise and what do I really need for my workouts? If yoga is your forte, an assortment of cardio gear won’t be top of your list. Rather, a mat, blocks and yoga bands will be the priority. Whereas, if you’re working on pumping thos muscles, you may consider investing in a barbell, plates and a weight bench.
When starting out, keep it simple with a non-slip exercise mat, a set of resistance bands and adjustable dumbbells. These are key items that have a place in a diversity of workouts.
Is It Cheaper To Build Your Own Gym At Home?
Depending on what a gym membership will set you back, a home gym may or may not be a cheaper option. On average, a gym membership is about $600-ish a year. Weighed against the cost of kitting out your home space—especially if you invest in cardio or lifting equipment—you might just find it equals out over the years. Another factor is how often you work out. If you’re dedicated to daily workouts, your gym cost per use declines. If you go through phases of hard workouts or no exercise at all, you may find it a wasted expense.
But it’s not only about saving money. If you work remotely, a home gym can be a huge advantage when you’re crunched for a spare moment. Whether it’s a quick sweat session before opening your inbox or a lunchtime lift, there are many benefits to building your own gym at home.
Of course, there’s a flip side to that argument as well. Leaving the house to go to a physical gym can separate your home space from your workout space, and provides a social aspect if you attend classes or develop a community at the gym. Perhaps you can find a balance between your own setting and a low-cost, flexible gym membership to enjoy the best of both worlds.
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