A home gym may be easier to set up than you think. This may look more like a mini workout area than a full room dedicated to a gym. All you really need is a small space and a few pieces of versatile equipment.
With gyms closed nearly everywhere during the current “shelter in place”, it’s worth the small investment to purchase your own equipment. Even when the shelter is lifted, we don’t know how long it will be till gyms open up again. I suspect (and hope!) small studios like ours will be one of the first to open while big gyms make take longer. Plus you may find that working out at home is a lot more pleasant than dealing with the crowds in big gyms.
Minimal set up
This is the set up I recommend for my clients with the goals of health, wellness, and weight loss. We use medium to light weights, bands, and common exercise equipment. Here is the basic shopping list as pictured above and further details written below:
Sold out items
Home fitness equipment is selling out fast, so best to act quickly. If you are have trouble finding the basics we can help. We have certain items in storage we can lend to you if you choose to work with us online. They will be properly cleaned prior to pick up or delivery.
Dumbbells are very versatile and can pretty much be used to work every muscle. I recommend a medium weight if buying one pair. If buying two, a medium-light and medium-heavy pair are good choices. 5lbs and 10lbs respectively for women, 8lbs and 15lbs for men. This of course, can vary widely.
Another versatile weight to have around. A medium-heavy one is sufficient. 15-25lbs for women, 25-45 for men. The links below have some great equipment.
Get the exercise tubing with handles. These are super versatile, easily attachable, and have handles. We like the “First Place All-Purpose Exercise Band” from performbetter.com. A medium band (level 4 for these) is a good choice if buying one. If buying two, get a medium light and a medium. A door anchor is also a good addition. Other bands are can work fine, but these are just preferred.
Mini Band XL
These are small, inexpensive bands that are most commonly used for squats and band walks. The green (medium) and blue (heavy) are the most commonly used. Or just get the 4 pack, they are cheap enough.
Don’t buy the ribbon bands
For fitness workouts these are hard to work with. They work well for rehab exercises and typically have these given to them by physical therapists for home use. Theraband has good products and their “CLX” bands work well, but a strip of ribbon band doesn’t give us many options for exercises.
A great piece of equipment for challenging your stability and working your core. They vary in quality, but any will do for home use. The size of the ball is based off your height: <5’4” = 45cm, 5’5”- 5’9 = 55cm, 5’10”- 6’3” = 65cm, 6’3”+ =75cm. I find that some charts are a little off, so that’s my recommendation.
Yoga or foam mat
Yoga mats are the most versatile mats out there. They grip easily, provide adequate cushioning, and stay put. If you need a mat with extra cushioning, get a thicker foam mat. Cheaper foam mats may slide and not lay flat. The best foam ones are thick, stick to surfaces, and lay flat. These are often the most expensive.
Many useful pieces of equipment can be added to your home gym like BOSU balls, benches, medicine balls, and a wider variety of weights. Foam rollers and other self massage tools are also worth buying for recovery purposes.
Jerry Yuhara, CPT, CSCS, CMT #75123
299 California Ave, Suite 120
Palo Alto, CA 94306
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