If you want to start and stick to a regular fitness routine, setting up a home gym or exercise area is a great place to start. After all, it’s harder to find an excuse to skip your workouts when everything you need is already in your house. Despite the cost of equipment up front, it could quickly end up saving you money compared to a monthly gym membership.
So, now that you’ve decided to work out from home, what fitness equipment is worth buying for your home exercise setup? The options are seemingly endless: high-end smart workout equipment, rowing machines, treadmills, cardio machines, squat racks, weight stacks, exercise balls, ellipticals — not to mention other home gym equipment options like resistance bands, foam rollers, yoga mats, medicine balls, weight plates, dumbbells and kettlebells.
No matter your fitness level or fitness goal, whether it’s to burn calories, lose weight, get your heart rate up, build muscle mass through strength training or just get healthier, we’ve got the best home exercise equipment you can buy.
Not only can this system attach to pretty much any door, but you can anchor it to rafters, trees or outdoor posts as well. No matter where you set it up, you can use it to practice and master TRX’s seven “foundational moves” (pushing, pulling, lunging, hinging, squatting, planking and rotating), all of which are meant to target core and resistance training.
The system’s accompanying exercise guide and online workout list help make it appealing to newcomers to TRX and seasoned practitioners alike. And, as CNET previously reported, this particular training system is fitness-trainer approved.
These durable resistance bands from FitCord pack a one-two punch when it comes to longevity. Made of dipped latex — the most durable material for resistance bands — the FitCord X-Over resistance bands feature a scrunched nylon safety sleeve that protects the latex underneath from UV damage and harsh weather. The sleeve also protects you in the case that your band snaps during use, but that’s unlikely with a dipped latex resistance band.
FitCord makes X-Over bands up to 55 pounds in resistance, which is plenty for the average person who wants to work out with resistance bands.
For those who might balk at this mat’s price, we’d like to highlight the reviewer who described it as the “Cadillac” of yoga mats — grippy enough for fast-paced vinyasa flows and cushiony enough for floor-based stretching. That said, that aforementioned grippiness may have to come with some time and effort on your part.
Some reviewers noted that the mat can get slippery during hot yoga. Manduka’s care instructions recommend a salt scrub to “break in” the surface of the mat, which can help.
The NordicTrack Commercial 14.9 really has it all — an adjustable stride length, a 14-inch color touchscreen, oversized cushioned pedals, auto-adjustment capabilities and Bluetooth compatibility. At 32 pounds, it also has one of the heaviest flywheels on the market, and when you combine that with magnetic resistance, the result is an impressively quiet machine with smooth movement.
This simple (read: nonvibrating, untextured) foam roller may seem a little basic, but that actually makes it perfect for a home gym setting. Praised by reviewers for its durability, this foam roller is firm enough to target soreness in the shoulders, legs, neck and back. Use it before or after a low-impact workout or a high-impact workout. You can also easily use it with other home exercise equipment, such as a stability ball or ankle weights.
Some reviewers specifically noted that this foam roller was perfectly suited for chest-opening exercises, since they could choose between three lengths (12, 18 or 36 inches) to fit their height.
Reviewers were big fans of the price point for this set of six kettlebells. But, this set’s best feature — and why it’s perfect for a home gym setting specifically — is its vinyl coating. Unlike cast iron kettlebells, these are designed for softer landings, in terms of both noise and impact, and with the longevity of the weight in mind, since the coating protects the weight from scratches and damage while training.
Jumping rope is a great workout for its range of motion, calories burned, weight loss and getting your heart rate up. This adjustable, tangle-resistant jump rope from Qwesen proves that cardio equipment as essential as a jump rope doesn’t have to be boring.
Its foam handles offer a comfortable grip on the jump rope while its steel wire rope provides enough momentum for a steady, smooth rhythm — in turn, reviewers write that it’s great for double- and triple-jumping. The rope comes coated with PVC for protection, ensuring long-term cardio workout use.
This foldable bench is about as customizable as it gets, with six back positions, four seat positions and the option to lay completely flat while weight lifting. Reviewers praise the bench’s ease of adjustment, the fact that it’s foldable for storage and its sturdiness (its weight capacity stands at 500 lbs.). Plus, the padded seat and foot holds make even a longer workout or training session comfortable.
The NordicTrack Speedweight gives you the versatility of an entire weight rack without taking up so much space. The weights start at 10 pounds and go up to 55 pounds in 2.5-pound increments, allowing you to get stronger over time without needing to buy more dumbbells. This adjustable dumbbell set is ideal for doing bicep curls and tones the muscles in your upper body and lower body.
In our testing, our favorite treadmill is Bowflex’s Treadmill 22. Built like an absolute tank, this treadmill has a 4-horsepower motor, a 22-inch-wide by 60-inch-long running path and Comfort Tech deck cushioning that helps absorb shock even at higher running deck speeds.
You can watch your favorite streaming shows or follow along with trainer-led workouts on the 22-inch touchscreen.