Selecting Equipment for a Home or Garage Gym

By |2017-06-05T13:16:42-07:00April 1st, 2011|Categories: Equipment Guides|0 Comments

The following are common combinations of equipment we’ve put together to make your choices easier when setting up a home gym. As always, contact us for assistance if you aren’t sure about a particular combination of equipment you plan on getting.

Home Gym Machine

Ideal For: People who prefer the simplicity of machine-based exercises or are new to weight lifting.

  • Home Gym – See the Home Gym Comparison Guide
  • Floor Mats – Just lay them down over your carpet, concrete, wood or tile floor to protect your equipment and the floor.

Freeweight Setup 1: Barbell-Based

Ideal For: Minimum 11′ x 8′ area to comfortably fit everything. This is the most highly recommended freeweight setup, due to its flexibility in providing for a wide range of exercises, including the squat, bench press, deadlift, pull ups, overhead presses, curls, and lots more.

  • Power Cage – This is a simple frame you walk into that lends itself to performing a variety of freeweight exercises. The main feature is the adjustable safety rods on either side that will catch an out-of-control bar, thereby safely reducing or eliminating your need for a spotter.
  • Bench – An adjustable flat/incline or flat/incline/decline bench will give you the widest range of positions for bench presses, incline presses, decline presses, crunches, and a nice seat for dumbbell curls.
  • Olympic Weight Set – Includes a bar, a full range of weight plates, and collars to secure the weights on the bar.
  • Weight Tree – Or do you plan on throwing your plates on the floor?
  • Floor Mats – Just lay them down over your carpet, concrete, wood or tile floor to protect your equipment and the floor.

You can expand from there, depending on what exercises you want to perform. A couple suggestions – Adjustable Dumbbell Handles or a Dip Belt, both of which can use the weight plates you purchase above.

Also see the Olympic vs Standard Weights article.

Freeweight Setup 2: Adjustable Dumbbells

Ideal For: A constrained space with room only for a bench, or anyone on a limited budget.

  • Dumbbell Weight Set – A couple of weight sets have been put together specifically for dumbbells, as dumbbells will need lots of 10-lb plates instead of the larger plates used on bars.
  • Bench – An adjustable flat/incline or flat/incline/decline bench will give you the widest range of positions for bench presses, incline presses, decline presses, crunches, and a nice seat for dumbbell curls.
  • Olympic Weight Tree – Or do you plan on throwing your plates on the floor?
  • Floor Mats – Just lay them down over your carpet, concrete, wood or tile floor to protect your equipment and the floor.

Freeweight Setup 3: Fixed-Weight Dumbbells

Ideal For: Space along a wall to fit the dumbbell rack(s). For anyone who doesn’t want to spend time adjusting weights. For anyone lifting heavy dumbbells. These don’t poke into you while resting on your legs like adjustable dumbbells would.

  • Dumbbells – Get a set, or else pick and choose the individual weights you want.
  • Bench – An adjustable flat/incline or flat/incline/decline bench will give you the widest range of positions for bench presses, incline presses, decline presses, crunches, and a nice seat for dumbbell curls.
  • Dumbbell Rack – You really don’t want a pile of dumbbells on the floor.
  • Floor Mats – Just lay them down over your carpet, concrete, wood or tile floor to protect your equipment and the floor.

About the Author:

David Kiesling
David founded Adamant Barbell in 2007 and Two Rep Cave in 2018. Lately he spends his free time practicing archery and hang gliding.

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