Deciding what space you will need for your home gym

So you may have decided to purchase some equipment, obviously depending on what you will be doing dictates how much space you will need available.

There are also concerns if you are going to be lifting heavy weights indoors, on your flooring. Especially if you live in a flat or plan to use the upstairs section of a house.

Their are two types of load when it comes to building regulations.

  • Dead Loads – Static items such as shelves, book cases that do not vary in weight or support the weight of a user
  • Live Loads – Equipment such as treadmills, racks and benches (or sofas etc..) where the weight is variable.

I will go further into flooring on a sperate article however I would strongly advise against any type of barbell focused motions be it controlled or explosive (such as deadlifting to clean and jerks) in a flat or upstairs environment if you are pulling loads of higher than around 125KG, Anything else should be in a purpose built environment or solid concrete flooring if you are lucky to have it, this is most commonly found in kitchens and laundry rooms.

Multi Gym equipment is more stable and designed for use in houses and flats alike and if you are more interested in bodybuilding / isolation exercises this is ideal and may be enough for you.

If you choose the right one to suit your needs and at best can take up a quarter of your room, this is very convenient.

You will find a lot of rubbish equipment when it comes to multi gyms, it is best not to cut corners with this for safety reasons as well as longevity of your purchase.

You can find equipment with well known brands that are solid, stable and have suitable weight if you do a little digging, again multigyms are something I will talk more on later as I believe they have a place in a home gym with their versatility and swiss army knife style space saving, and may be all you need if you are simply into lifting for bodybuilding or aesthetics.

Personally speaking I would advise against these kind of chin up bars as they will damage your doorframe over time and have a high chance of causing injury, You can find all sorts of examples on YouTube!

Best options naturally for creating a purpose based area for heavy training would be a garage or suitable outbuilding if this is available to you, use it.

motorcycle, motorbike, garage

This may not be the case for everyone, however if possible you will find you are able to create a space that will be strong and large enough to put any equipment in there, and is your safe bet for heavy lifting free weight exercises.

This was not possible for me but what i did have was a garden.

Avoid if you live in the UK dreams that you will build a cheap gazebo or awning and use the shelter from the rain to lift in, while this may work in summer it will do nothing but bring regret come fall and winter as your well earned equipment is rusted and you are left in a position where it is simply too cold and rainy or snowy outside to bring yourself to be out there using it realistically.

(Unless you train with stones, yokes, tractor tyres and the likes of course!)

Below was a measured rough sketch up I did for what space I would need:

Poorly sketched as it is I managed to work out what my dimension requirements would be at the time for creating an outbuilding in my garden.

  • For a treadmill you require a minimum of 50X24 Inches for a small to medium sized treadmill.
  • A multigym will work best with plenty room around the sides especially if fitted with fly arm attachments but as a minimum for most give yourself around 75 Inches to 50 Inches, and importantly a height of around 85 inches.
  • As you would find in a normal gym setup a safe recommended area for using a 7 foot Olympic bar is around 100 X 70 Inches giving yourself space for a rack and bench as well as a weight tree, which is not essential but nice to have.

For most people these three pieces of combined kit will give you the ability to do Squats, Deadlifts and Bench Press as well as all the isolation exercises and pulldowns on the multigym and cardiovascular training on the treadmill which is the barebones for a full gym set up as you are able to activate all muscle groups with this equipment.

If this is the kind of set up you are looking for aim to have about 14 Feet by 10 Feet minimum set aside.

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