Best Home Gym: Effective, Convenient Workouts From the Comfort of Your Home

best home gym


Incorporating exercise regularly can improve brain health, reduce the risk of illness and disease, and improve your overall ability to stay active every day. While this all sounds well and great, getting to the gym can sometimes be difficult given how busy our lives are. Plus, we all have those days when we're just downright unmotivated. It's also possible that once you get to your gym or class, it's crowded or you find yourself wasting valuable time waiting your turn for popular exercise machines.

This is why more and more people are opting to have their own home gyms. Working out at home can help you skip the headache of wasting time in overcrowded classes and comes with a number of other perks. Picturing what you want for your home gym can be overwhelming since some people might prefer to have a variety of weights and equipment while beginners might want a more minimalistic setup like a smart mirror with accessories. Aside from all that, finding budget-friendly options is always a good idea if you're just starting out. Here at ACTIVE, we've hand-selected a variety of the best home gym options to help you find the best setup to suit your needs.

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The Best Home Gym - Our Top Picks

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Best Overall Home Gym - lululemon Studio Mirror

lululemon Studio Mirror

SPECS

  • Key features: Instructor-led workout classes, minimal to no additional equipment needed

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We love the lululemon Studio Mirror as the best overall home gym because it provides all the equipment, space, and programming you need to get a good workout in at home. Aside from being one of the most affordable smart mirrors, upon purchasing you subscribe to a lululemon Studio Membership which gives you access to more than 10,000 classes from over 60 different fitness categories. You can choose a class that will give you a full-body workout using no equipment or one that builds strength using dumbbells or resistance bands.

Aside from the high-quality content that is offered, the Mirror takes up a minimal amount of space, which makes it a great option if your home gym space is limited. It also doubles as a full-length mirror when not in use, so it fits seamlessly into your decor. If you choose to enable the Mirror’s front-facing camera during one of the live classes, their Studio Trainers can see you and provide feedback or cheer you on.

What We Like

  • Instructor-led workout classes
  • Option for live classes or streamed classes
  • Sense of community from the instructors and other participants
  • Running, strength building, and other programs offered
  • Personal training available (at an additional cost)

What We Don't Like

  • Must have lululemon Studio subscription
  • No programming for powerlifting or CrossFit

BUY: lululemon Studio Mirror

Best All-In-One Home Gym - Force USA X20 Pro Multi Trainer

Force USA X20 Pro Multi Trainer

SPECS

  • Key features: 6-in-1 strength training system

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The Force USA X20 Pro Multi Trainer combines six strength training machines into one unit the size of a power rack. This means you can do all the squats, pull-ups, bench presses, and more in your all-in-one home gym. If you like to incorporate Olympic lifting, there's a place to store your barbell when you're not using it on the rack. There's also a suspension trainer that helps you work on stability and muscular endurance using the multi-grip pull-up bar.

There are upgrade kits to add even more versatility, such as an attachment for dips, a multi-grip lat pulldown bar, and Jammer Arms, which can help you perform lifting movements with stability and control when using free weights. These are not included in the base price and are considered upgrades for an additional cost.

What We Like

  • Strength-focused full body workout station
  • Customizable to your needs
  • Incorporates pulleys, weights, and cables
  • Base model includes a ton of accessories

What We Don't Like

  • Assembly may be tedious or some may need to pay to have it assembled
  • Additional cost for upgrade kits

BUY: Force USA X20 Pro Multi Trainer

Best Compact Home Gym - Tempo Move

Tempo Move

SPECS

  • Key features: Compact storage for weights, trackable smart weights, instructor-led classes, live feedback

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If your space is so limited that you're questioning if a smart mirror is a good fit, you might want to consider the Tempo Move. It offers storage for up to 90 pounds in smart weights within just over a square foot. Its magnetic cover and natural finish fit into any decor so it can be out in the open instead of in a designated workout room. So what are these smart weights for? These pair with an included device called the Core, which scans and recognizes Tempo's smart weights to track your reps and provide feedback and guidance.

When you purchase the Tempo Move, it includes everything you need aside from an iPhone, which connects to the Core to access the Tempo Studio workouts. With your Tempo Studio subscription, you gain access to more than 1,000 workouts that include a variety of class types for streaming. There are also live classes if you are looking for feedback in real-time and a community feel.

What We Like

  • Discreet storage for weights
  • Great value for what's included
  • Core device is portable so it can be used away from home
  • Live classes provide a sense of community

What We Don't Like

  • Only available for iOS devices
  • Must have a Tempo Studio subscription
  • Only up to 42.5 lbs. per dumbbell—may not be enough for some lifters

BUY: Tempo Move

Best Home Bowflex Gym - Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym

Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym

SPECS

  • Key features: Total body strength workout from 5 to 210 or 310 pounds of resistance

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The best home Bowflex gym is without a doubt the Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym. With the ability to perform over 50 different exercises, this piece of home gym equipment is extremely versatile. This means you can do a great variety of workouts, including full-body or targeting specific muscle groups. Even though it doesn't come with explicit programming, it does come with an extensive exercise manual and an attachable chart to highlight some fundamental movements.

The standard model has up to 210 pounds of power rod resistance and if you need more you have the option to upgrade to 310 pounds for an additional cost. Speaking of the power rods, these are said to be less stressful on joints and also come with a seven-year warranty.

What We Like

  • Compact design
  • Able to perform over 50 exercises
  • Purchase includes access to a library of workouts and exercise plans

What We Don't Like

  • Extra cost to increase 210-lb. resistance
  • Not suitable for those who prefer to use free weights

BUY: Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym

Best Smart Home Gym - Tonal

tonal

SPECS

  • Key features: Wall-mounted machine with 2 adjustable arms for push and pull exercises, structured program and classes, form feedback

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Tonal is a smart home gym machine that is wall-mounted so you can follow along with your workout using the 24-inch interactive display. Each side has an adjustable arm that can move at different angles to accommodate a variety of exercises. They also incorporate resistance by using electromagnetic technology that enables up to 200 pounds of resistance. The arm grips can be swapped out with two handles, a bar, or a rope, opening up a larger range of exercises.

If you prefer bodyweight workouts or want to focus on different muscle groups, you can customize your chosen workout by types of exercises, sets, or weight modes. While you work out, 17 sensors track your movements and provide feedback on form. Your strength analytics and other data are tracked on the Tonal mobile app, and you can compare your data with other users in your age group if you'd like.

What We Like

  • 17 sensors provide feedback on form
  • Strength analytic data can be compared to other users in your age group
  • Diverse classes offered to suit different preferences
  • 30-day, at-home trial

What We Don't Like

  • Arms stand out—do not blend in well with decor
  • Less tech-savvy users may feel overwhelmed

BUY: Tonal

Best Budget Home Gym - Marcy 150 lb. Stack Home Gym

Marcy 150lb. Stack Home Gym

SPECS

  • Key features: Multi-functional workout station that works every muscle group

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The Marcy 150 lb. Stack Home Gym is a multi-functional machine that takes the place of over 12 machines you'll find at major gyms, without the annoying wait times or need for expansive space. The frame itself is made with a heavy-duty 14-gauge steel tube frame that's extremely stable. The foam roller pads and back pads provide comfort and support during your sets.

There are a variety of movements you can choose from to target either specific muscle groups or full body, depending on your preference. You can easily choose the appropriate weight for each movement with the selector pin up to the maximum weight, which is 150 pounds.

What We Like

  • Stabilized design with a powder-coated steel frame
  • Budget-friendly
  • Compact design

What We Don't Like

  • Max user weight of 300 lbs. could be exclusive
  • 150 lbs. may not be enough for heavy lifters

BUY: Marcy 150 lb. Stack Home Gym

Best Cable Machine - REP FT-3000 Compact Functional Trainer

REP FT-3000 Compact Functional Trainer

SPECS

  • Key features: Compact, easy-to-use, commercial-grade cable machine, weights up to 180 lbs.

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Fun fact: the REP FT-3000 Compact Functional Trainer can fit through a standard doorway. Even though it's suitable for smaller spaces, that doesn't mean you're losing any benefits. The FT-3000 Compact Functional Trainer has 15 cable positions with dual-weight stacks. You can easily adjust the weight up to 180 pounds using the magnetic-tipped pin and you can quickly adjust the column handle up or down in between sets if needed.

The heavy-duty frame has a double-layered powder coating that's chip resistant, so this home gym setup is long-lasting. The cables move smoothly, thanks to the fiberglass-reinforced pulleys. It also has built-in pull-up handles and attachment storage so everything is in one place.

What We Like

  • 15 cable positions
  • Double powder coating
  • Easily adjustable pulleys and weights
  • Compact design
  • Free shipping

What We Don't Like

  • Limited attachments included
  • Not suitable for those who prefer to use free weights

BUY: REP Fitness FT-3000 Compact Functional Trainer

Best Portable Home Gym - TRX Home2 System

TRX Home2 System

SPECS

  • Key features: All-in-one fitness powered by your body weight, lightweight and portable

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We love the TRX Home2 System because it's a great option to optimize your workout in different locations. The TRX Home2 System can be utilized to complete simple, effective workouts no matter where you are because it can be attached to doorways or anywhere else you can find a suitable anchor. Thanks to the quick setup, you can get to your workout right away. The locking loop design keeps the straps even and the carabiner clips are stable and strong.

The TRX Home2 System is a Suspension Trainer that uses your body weight to perform strength, cardio, and mobility exercises. The TRX app provides exercises for everyone from beginners to more experienced users.

What We Like

  • Can be set up and taken down quickly
  • Mesh travel bag can be utilized for travel
  • Packs light
  • Adjustable for all fitness levels

What We Don't Like

  • Free access to the app ends after 1 year
  • App can be difficult to navigate, per reviews

BUY: TRX Home2 System

Best Home Gym for Beginners - NordicTrack Fusion CST

NordicTrack Fusion CST

SPECS

  • Key features: Trainer-led interactive classes, beginner-specific class options, automatically adjusted resistance

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If you're just starting out, feeling a bit lost, and longing for some guidance, we recommend the NordicTrack Fusion CST. This machine incorporates cardio and strength training led by instructors who talk you through each movement. The beginner classes are always a good place to start and as you get more comfortable, you can feel free to explore one of their many other class options. During a class, you don't have to worry about adjusting the resistance when the instructor wants to ramp it up, since it's adjusted automatically.

The NordicTrack Fusion CST is equipped with six independent pulleys at three pulley heights and 20 levels of resistance. You'll need an iFit subscription to access the coach-controlled interactive training sessions, but the first 30 days come free with your purchase. The base is sturdy and freestanding so you don't have to worry about mounting anything and there's a 10-year warranty on the frame along with a one-year parts and labor warranty.

What We Like

  • 30 days of iFit included
  • Comes with 6 handles and ankle straps
  • Bluetooth chest strap included to monitor heart rate

What We Don't Like

  • Resistance levels may not be suitable for more advanced athletes
  • Pulleys are not adjustable

BUY: NordicTrack Fusion CST

Best Home Gym for Heavy Lifters - Rogue RM-6 Monster Rack 2.0

Rogue RM-6 Monster Rack 2.0

SPECS

  • Key features: Power rack designed for free weights, built-in storage, customizable options

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The Rogue RM-6 Monster Rack 2.0 is our choice for the best home gym for heavy lifters because it's made with 11-gauge steel tubing that is extremely strong and durable. It also has six columns with just the right depth to keep you from worrying about bolting this rack to the floor. The back section has built-in storage for your bumper plates so you can keep everything organized and your workout space free of tripping hazards. You can customize the finish, front pull-up bar, J-Cups, and even the color of the rig.

Aside from the many included customization options, there are a ton of optional attachments that you can purchase to make this the perfect home gym to fit your needs. Every single hole in this rack is 1 inch, so you don't have to worry about choosing a permanent spot for pegs and accessories right off the bat—you always have the option to change it up later.

What We Like

  • Doesn't need to be bolted to the floor
  • Built-in storage for plates
  • J-cups rated for 1,000 lbs.
  • 1" hardware keyhole pattern throughout the rack
  • Durable, high-quality steel

What We Don't Like

  • Expensive
  • Not for beginners
  • Takes up more space than other home gym options

BUY: Rogue RM-6 Monster Rack

Benefits of Home Gyms

Home gyms can be beneficial in several ways. First and foremost, nothing beats the convenience of not having to leave your house to exercise and the flexibility of choosing the time you will work out. Sometimes, life is so busy it's hard to figure out when to squeeze this important part of your day in, so cutting out the travel time is helpful. Speaking of cutting down time, there's no waiting around for the class to get started or for someone to finish using the piece of equipment you need. You'll also encounter way fewer germs if the members of your household are the only ones using the equipment.

Another added benefit is that you'll save money on expenses like childcare and gym memberships. Depending on what you choose for your home gym, buying the equipment upfront can be expensive at first, but if you take into account how much you'd spend per year on memberships and other costs, your setup will likely pay for itself sooner than you may think.

How To Find the Best Home Gym


Budget

Overall, budgets will vary from person to person depending on how much equipment you need, what kind of equipment, and other preferences specific to you. If you're looking for an all-in-one setup, there are a variety of options to consider that may fit your budget. If you want to get several different pieces of equipment, you may want to map out what you will buy first and what you'd like to add later. Having an idea of all the equipment you want is also helpful so you can keep an eye out for sales and other deals.

Value and Quality

Since you'll be spending your hard-earned money, it is important to choose items that are high quality so they will last you in the long run. That means looking at the materials used to make the equipment, reading reviews, and researching manufacturer's warranties. We also recommend choosing equipment that fits the types of exercises you like to do, that way you're buying things you'll use in the long run.

Size

The space you have allotted for your home gym setup can influence what type of equipment you purchase. Before buying anything, choose the spot in your home that is best for you. From there, you can look at the dimensions of the products you're considering to see if they will be a good fit for your space. Keep in mind that you may need extra space for your body to move around without restrictions.

FAQs About Home Gyms


What are the different types of home gyms?

There are many different types of home gyms. For instance, some home gyms may have an elaborate array of cable machines, weights, and other strength equipment while others may include just a yoga mat and a subscription to programs with instructor-led classes. There are also all-in-one machines and smart mirrors that provide a total body workout with minimal equipment.

What is a home gym?

Any accessory or piece of equipment that assists in your exercise routine at home constitutes a home gym.

Are home gyms worth it?

Definitely! No matter if you're just starting to incorporate an exercise routine into your life or want to continue your routine from the comfort of your home, home gyms can make working out accessible and convenient for everyone.

About the Author

Rachael Gonzalez

Rachael Gonzalez is a Staff Writer for ACTIVE. She spent five years in education before she joined the ACTIVE team in 2022. In this role, she is still able to make a positive impact on others by writing about something she loves: health and wellness.

See More from Rachael

Rachael Gonzalez is a Staff Writer for ACTIVE. She spent five years in education before she joined the ACTIVE team in 2022. In this role, she is still able to make a positive impact on others by writing about something she loves: health and wellness.

See More from Rachael

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