Anyone who works out sometimes feels that a home gym would be the perfect solution – a convenient, comfortable way to squeeze in a few minutes of physical activity between other tasks, without leaving the house. But how do you choose which pieces of home gym equipment are worth the investment in terms of time, cost and space in your home?
Here’s a closer look at the pros and cons of buying fitness equipment for your home, as well as our picks of the most efficient and effective items to choose.
Pros and cons of a home gym
There are many benefits to having gym equipment in your home. Even for the most dedicated gym-goers, there are days when you’re busy and simply lack the time or energy to go to the gym. Similarly, when it’s hot for 3-4 months in a year in Dubai, even those who are obsessed with an outdoor workout may be discouraged from heading outside.
Aside from the quickness and ease of access, home fitness equipment is also particularly helpful for those too self-conscious to work out in public, or for beginners who’d prefer to establish a base level of fitness before facing their peers in the gym or the local park.
However, there are some drawbacks to the arrangement. Gym equipment can be pricey and take up a lot of room in your home, and it’s hard to match the variety and quality of equipment available in a gym. If you’re a social sort, you may find it boring to work out alone at home, while others may need a more public arena (or the help of a personal trainer or fitness instructor) to feel sufficiently motivated. Plus, with some more specialized exercise gear, it’s better to have expert instruction to make sure you’re using it correctly, both to avoid injury and to get the most out of your workout.
The best fitness equipment for your home
If you are keen to purchase some pieces of workout equipment to use at home, it’s important to consider your workout habits, fitness goals, budget and physical living space before taking the plunge. Most people don’t have loads of space to devote to their workout gear, so it can help to choose versatile equipment that allows you to work a variety of body parts. Plus, try to find something that suits your personal interests and aims so that you will use it regularly (and not leave it to gather dust in a corner).
With this in mind, here are a few pieces of home gym equipment you may want to consider that are generally worth the investment in terms of versatility and effectiveness. Bear in mind that a home gym doesn’t necessarily have to involve massive pieces of cardio equipment or complicated resistance machines – sometimes simple exercise accessories can be the most effective:
1. Resistance bands:They’re inexpensive, easy to combine with other gym equipment, and take up virtually no room.
2. Jump rope: While some people may dismiss the humble skipping rope as a child’s toy, it is in fact a space-saving fitness tool that provides an outstanding cardio workout, as well as honing your reflexes and coordination.
3. Adjustable dumbbells or free weights: Dumbbells or free weights may take up slightly more space than resistance bands, but if you buy a compact, well-designed set such as the free weights swing tower or free weights swing board from WaterRower, they should still fit it neatly into an average sized home.
4. Exercise ball:Enable you to stretch and strengthen your entire body – they’re particularly good for improving core strength and balance
5. Folding treadmill: Admittedly, this one does require a little more space and money, but it is possible to find models that are reasonably priced and surprisingly compact.
6. Elliptical machines:Uses significant amount of muscles and the number of calories you can burn is very similar to the treadmill, but it’s considerably easier on the joints.
7. Stationery bikes: Low impact workout. Burns the least calories: only around 100 for every for 4 miles.
8. Rowing machines: If you want to build muscles, have a great cardiovascular workout and improve your coordination, the rowing machine is the best bet for you. So far, rowing machines are said to be the most effective fitness equipment. Generally, water-based fitness equipment or those that create resistance through water such as the popular rowing machine brand, WaterRower, have very little impact on your knees and joints thereby giving you a safe way to workout at home.
9. Wallbars: This is one of the most multi-functional and versatile workout devices you can buy for your home. With 14 bars, the WaterRower wallbars have numerous grip possibilities from different angles for stretching and body weight exercises including pull-ups, hanging and swinging. Additional equipment fixtures such as the Waterrower combi-trainer or extension pieces can be used for performing abdominal exercises on the WaterRower wallbars.
Based on the types of workoutprograms you will be following, either one or a mix of the above fitness equipment can be selected for optimum performance. Most of these devices are available in Dubai.