Worried About Space
We don't all live in 7,000 square foot mansions complete with our own home gym, racquetball court, and Olympic-size swimming pool. Maybe you're in a studio apartment, a cramped dorm or barracks room, or mom and dad's basement. If that's the case, then you want something that will not only utilize the space you have, but will also help you reach your goals.
The best recommendation for your situation is the Tower 200 by Body by Jake. Not only does it utilize resistance tubing and multiple angles of attack for your muscles, all you need is a door, a frame, and a little bit of hallway space. If the price tag ($137.95 on Amazon) of the Tower 200 is a little out of your range, another great space saver is the classic chin-up/push-up bar combo. The Iron Gym can be purchased online for $29.99, or some knockoffs can be found at your local dollar store in the "As Seen on TV" aisle.
Tried and True
Probably the best known and most widely used, the Bowflex has become synonymous with home gym equipment. Your standard Bowflex machine can be adjusted to lift copious amounts of weight as well as employ a total body workout, or concentrate on specific muscle groups. If you have the space for one, the Bowflex can become your go-to exercise equipment, eliminating the need for an overpriced gym membership or can substitute if you don't have a fitness facility close by. Some assembly is required, but most Bowflex models are able to be put up within a few hours. Bowflex also has several alternatives to their regular machines, including a slimmer version for tighter spaces and adjustable dumbbells to further add to your home gym. Be advised, however, that the Bowflex and other large at-home gym machines may stretch your budget--in Bowlflex's case, the price tag is around $800 (though Amazon has it for $449.)
The New Age
The majority of fitness infomercials now focus not on a specific piece of equipment, but on a type of workout that can be followed for a period of time. Whether it's the P90X plan, Insanity workout, or old school Tae Bo tapes, these workout videos require determination and dedication to achieve the results you see. Great for smaller budgets, people who travel, and found in most dorm rooms, these can be awesome alternatives for your wallet and your body. But just like any physical piece of home fitness equipment, you won't see results unless you stick with it.
Ryan Barnhart, MS, PES, is a certified Performance Enhancement
and Injury Prevention Specialist through the National Academy of Sports
Medicine (NASM). He also holds a master's degree in exercise science, as
well as a bachelor of sport management, both from California University
of Pennsylvania. Ryan has worked with numerous collegiate and amateur
athletes across many different fields. Ryan also has had the opportunity
to work with several professional athletes. Recently he has worked with
amateur and professional athletes within the emerging sport of Mixed
Ryan is currently the director of fitness at a 700+ member gym near Pittsburgh, PA. He enjoys working with weekend warriors, athletes, and everyone in between. You can contact Ryan at firstname.lastname@example.org.