If you're seeking workout equipment to build up your home gym, it's helpful to know that you aren't limited to expensive machines. There are many less expensive versions or items that are just as durable and functional. For example, if you've been wanting a Peloton, but don't have the budget for one, there are plenty of alternatives to pick from. It's also important to acknowledge that not everyone has the same amount of space, so you may be limited to equipment options.
You can build a solid home gym without taking up too much room or breaking the bank. As an apartment dweller, I know a thing or two about how to optimize a space with fitness equipment to help you get a good workout in. Pick up some of the affordable pieces below to create your own workout space at home.
Workout sliders (also known as gliders) are one of the cheapest yet most effective pieces of equipment you can own. They're typically flat and round, but are also available in different shapes. A set can cost less than $10 and can be found on Amazon or your local sporting goods store. These are a good tool to step up your core workouts at home, and because they're dual-sided, they are hardwood floor and carpet-friendly. All you need is a smooth surface to use these and go. If you need exercise ideas on how to use workout sliders, CNET has a comprehensive guide.
You've probably seen a high-step aerobic platform during step classes, but this tool can be used for more than that. The high step is a good way to make your workouts more challenging by including step ups, rear foot elevated split squats, hip thrusts, elevated push ups, tricep dips and more. Some come in a long rectangular shape, while others come in a square shape. I personally prefer a square platform because it takes up minimal space if you don't have the room for the longer version. Additionally, if you'd like to add more height to it, you can purchase extra risers separately.
5 to 52.5 lbs
16.9" L x 8.3" W x 9" H (43 x 21.2 x 22.8 cm)
Storage Base Included
Dumbbells are a common piece of strength training equipment to have at home. Typically they're inexpensive depending on the weight, but sometimes having multiple pairs around your home isn't the most convenient. That's why some people prefer adjustable dumbbells instead. Adjustable dumbbells can make up to 15 pairs of dumbbells in one set. However, they can be pricey. Some people prefer adjustable dumbbells since they save space and because sometimes they end up costing more or less the same as purchasing multiple pairs of dumbbells.
Whether you choose regular or adjustable dumbbells depends on the weight ranges you prefer and if you need extra space in your home. Either way, you can't go wrong with having one or the other in your home. Just make sure if you're going to buy regular dumbbells that you have various weights as you progress in your training. If you are considering adjustable dumbbells, take a look at some of CNET's favorite picks.
If you're just learning to master your body weight, a suspension training system like a TRX is a good tool to have. These lightweight straps are portable and can be anchored to a door, outdoor posts and trees. They're trainer-approved for assistance for full-body workouts -- no matter your fitness level. Suspension trainers can also withstand bodyweight up to 350 pounds so it's versatile for most people. There are many to pick from and price-wise can range as low as $30 to over $100.
Having a good exercise mat can improve your home workout experience. It's versatile enough to be used for yoga, pilates, strength training and even high-intensity exercises. I personally like a workout mat that is dual-sided so you have options to choose from. Additionally, making sure the mat has an excellent grip to withstand your yoga flow or bootcamp class is key. It should also have decent cushioning to absorb any impact created during your workout session. Although many expensive options are available, there are affordable selections that are just as good. It's also helpful to know the right way to clean it if you're planning on keeping it for the long haul.
If you're having a hard time finding dumbbells and still want a way to build up your strength, then another option would be with resistance bands. Resistance bands are long (or short) rubber bands that come in a variety of weights and colors. They are a good starting point to familiarize yourself with some exercises if you're a beginner and they are also useful to make some exercises harder if you're advanced. A resistance band workout can target the upper and lower body, core and more. Resistance bands are an affordable piece of equipment and can range anywhere from as low as $10 to more than $100, depending on the brand and weight. There are plenty of options to choose from so you can't go wrong with the set you choose for home use.
An exercise or stability ball is inexpensive equipment that helps with your pilates, yoga practice and more. It's a large, round, inflatable ball that comes in different diameter sizes that you can select based on your height. An exercise ball is a good way to challenge your core and relieve back pain, and it can even be used for prenatal exercises. It also doesn't take up much space and can be used in place of your home office chair, if you prefer.
If you're looking for a way to add extra resistance to low-impact exercises such as walking or your pilates class, then you may want to consider ankle and wrist weights. Although there are limitations with ankle and wrist weights, they are still helpful in strengthening your lower and upper body. A pair comes in several weight sizes ranging from a quarter pound to 20 pounds. Generally, experts recommend sticking with the lighter weights to get the most use out of them. Ankle and wrist weights are also inexpensive and can cost around $10 or as much as $40 -- if you're looking to splurge.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.