Your Options for Home Exercise Equipment

What type of home exercise equipment are you looking for?  There are all sorts of options available, limited only by your budget, your space, and your needs. So check our guide now to get a flavour of the types of equipment you may be looking for.

Whether you are buying exercise equipment for the home or for a commercial facility, the same rules apply – you need to know what it is you are looking for, know the options available, and have a good idea of prices.

The First Thought - Cardio Machines

The most expensive types of exercise equipment are generally cardio machines. With lots of lots of moving parts, they can take a high level of abuse and typically have some fairly sophisticated electronic accessories attached.

From treadmills to steppes, climbers to rowers, stationary bikes to cross-trainers, there are plenty of options for cardio machines.  While people often debate which one is "best”, the honest answer is that there are no absolutes.

Treadmills, bikes, and steppers primarily work the lower body, while rowers, climbers and cross trainers can work both, but that is not the be all and end all of a good workout.

What Do You Actually Enjoy?

In many ways, the ultimate question is what do you like doing? 

While a gym or health club will need a variety of machines to cater for all clients and to offer variety, someone buying for the home will usually only have the space and budget for one cardio machine – the best machine is therefore the one that you will use, over and over again.

Assess your own boredom threshold honestly. This should give you some clues as to whether rowing 5,000m will really happen (about 30 minutes?) every time you want to workout.

Bear in mind this may not actually be cardio. You may really enjoy the strength workout using a bar and weight plates and know you will do this 3 or 4 times a week, every week.

Strength Equipment & Accessories

Strength training equipment offers similar options.  The simple choice between free weights and machines has become a much wider debate, with alternatives now including resistance bands, kettlebells, and suspension systems.  Many people consider these to be more natural ways to train that either machines of free weights.

There is also the consideration of money. Buying cheaper and smaller individual strength equipment is easier for the vast majority of us. You only need buy the equipment you are going to use then and there, saving heavier and more complicated equipment for when you are ready.

In Short

Cardio Machines are secure and stable, but have a limited range of exercise available to you. For home use, a small multigym is likely to be the only possibility, while for a commercial establishment, the decisions will revolve around which system to use, how many machines, and so on.

Free Weights are much simpler – if you have a limited space, dumbbells are a great choice, while for those with a bit more space, barbells allow you to perform more exercises and use heavier weights.

Suspension systems are growing rapidly in popularity.  Using just your bodyweight, suspension systems like the TRX allow you to effectively work the entire body, including a superb core workout.

Alternatively, you could try using kettlebells.  These chucks of iron come with easy grip handles that allow you to swing and move them around in ways that simply aren't possible with dumbbells, providing a satisfying workout for your whole body.

Whatever you are looking for, the choices are endless.  Just take your time, do your research, and enjoy your workouts!