If you're considering to train at home, you need to look into some home workout equipment that allows you to do a fair variety of exercises so that you can train, basically, all the muscles of your body.
That is just going to give you problems in the future.
If you work out your chest but ignore your back guess what, your body will curve forward because your back muscles can't compensate your pectorals mass.
So consider training every part of your body, or at least the most important parts:
and get the necessary home workout equipment.
Basic Home Workout Equipment
We all know, more or less, what exercises we can do without any equipment, right? Here are some immediate workouts that come to my mind:
- Sit ups
- Push ups and close hands push ups
- Body weight squats
- Body weight lunges
but clearly it's not enough to cover the majority of our muscles.
But if you can't afford to get a gym membership, or don't have time, or for whatever reason your only option is working out at home, you don't really need very much to get in shape.
I'd say that all you really need is:
- A pair of dumbbells
- A workout bench
and all the rest is a "plus".
With dumbbells you can pretty much do all kinds of exercises, you don't even need a barbell. You would get a barbell just as a variation.
Of course at the gym you want to use both because they make your muscles work differently, but at home, jeez, we want the basic equipment.
I did some research, and I have dumbbells and workout bench myself, and based on my experience I would suggest you to get adjustable dumbbells.
It's a pair of dumbbells where you change the weight with the turn of a dial.
The second best solution is adjustable cast iron dumbbells where you change the weight by loading/unloading actual plates. You need to buy the weights that you need.
I said you should get yourself a workout bench too. I think it's a must have, at least because it allows you to do your exercises in a flat, inclined and declined position.
With a bench you can do exercises that it would be impossible to do, like:
- Flat/incline/decline dumbbell bench press
- Decline sit ups
- Leg raises
- Incline dumbbell bicep curls
- Incline one arm shoulder lateral raises
and several others like one arm rows and tricep dips that you could also do using a chair.
When you buy a bench make sure the frame is stable and the pads are soft enough to be comfortable.
There are several types of workout bench that you can choose from. The one above is one of my favorites, it's a Bowflex, and it costs more than 100$, depending on where you buy it.
There are others that are cheaper but also the quality is proportioned.
Home Gyms for Home Workout Equipment
Home gyms are great and provide the possibility to do many exercises like leg extensions and curls that you can't do with a bench and dumbbells.
Most home gyms have a vertical bench and seat, and almost all of them come with:
- Seated bench press
- Seated chest flys
- Lat pulldown
- Seated leg extension
- Standing leg curls
- Preacher bench for bicep curls
and work with cables and a stack of weights.
I owned two home gyms so far and I was very pleased with both, especially with the second, that I love by the way.
My first home gym was a Marcy Home Gym, this is it:
The only muscles that I couldn't train with this home gym were my shoulders. Yes they work a little bit when you do chest press, but that's not enough in my opinion.
Actually taking advantage of the low pulley I could do front raises and one arm lateral raises, but I like to be able to do shoulder press.
Now I own a Bowflex Blaze that I absolutely love. I mean....LOVE.
With this one I can do any exercise I want, including:
- Leg press
- Bent over rows
Here is my new jewel:
A home gym is not a must have to train at home, let's be clear.
It's only that usually it happens that you start with dumbbells and bench...and then you want to be able to do more, especially when you see a home gym assembled and ready to be tested at the store, or if you see one at your best friend's house.
Now that I have it I couldn't do without. And I love the fact that when, for some reasons, I can't go to the gym I have all the home workout equipment that I need to effectively replace a gym workout session.
The flexibility of a Bowflex is awesome. Who invented it had such a great idea, also "engineering speaking".
Best thing ever? I can fold it up when I don't use it, and it literally occupies something like 3 square feet!
Other Home Workout Equipment Accessories
Once you have dumbbells, a bench and...maybe...even a home gym I would say you are missing nothing, you have much more than you need.
This is true for men, mostly. Usually girls don't care about heavy weights, benches, home gyms etcetera...
If you don't want anything of the above (I understand that not everybody has even the room for it) here is another great invention that can help you exercise very well: resistance bands.
Resistance bands are such an easy home workout equipment.
Light, you can store them anywhere, they don't occupy room at all. It's just an elastic band with a handle (or handgrip however you call it) at each end.
This is a classic resistance band set:
You can't believe how many exercises you can do with resistance bands, and they're good.
You can even do squats and rowing!
Resistance bands are a really interesting home workout equipment option for all the exercises that you can do with them, for the insignificant price and storage space required.
If you want you can also get a door attachment which I find very useful. If you attach the resistance band to a door you can use it as a pulley.
Pull Up Bar
Pull up bars are for heavy workout. you have to be strong to lift yourself just with your arms (ok actually you use your lats more than your biceps).
But it can also be used for leg raises to work your core.
They usually are attached on a doorway, but some can just be screwed onto the wall:
Pull up bars are useful for:
- Pull ups
- Chin ups
- Leg raises
Not too many exercises I know, but they're hard! And they're compound exercises. I wouldn't get just a pull up bar if I had to choose. I think it's more an accessory than a "must have" home workout equipment.
Another piece of home workout equipment that is becoming more and more popular these days is kettlebell.
Kettlebells are nothing more than a cast iron ball with a handle on the top and they're used for weight lifting exercises.
I've never had kettlebells in my home, but I heard great things about them. At least I know that they're proven to stimulate your whole body workout.
Exercises with kettlebells, in fact, usually involve more than one muscle group, and are effective for building strength and endurance. In particular kettlebell exercises can strengthen you core fast because it's almost always involved, and of course grip.
For more information about kettlebells and how they can help you build strength and endurance, visit Kettlebell Workouts.
Home Workout Equipment Links