HOME GYM BUYING GUIDE
Home gyms are a very convenient, compact and safe way of exercising with weights. Weight training is an extremely effective method of strengthening not only muscles, but bones and joints as well.
YOUR GOALS AND THE GOALS OF OTHERS IN YOUR HOME
Understanding and discussing each user’s goals will protect you from buying a unit that will not withstand the use of multiple family members or have the proper adjustability for a variety of user sizes.
MAKE SURE IT IS VERY STABLE (NOT WOBBLY)
A heavy-duty steel frame construction will provide a long-lasting, safe and stable machine. Machines built with strong robotic welds are preferred.
EASY TO SWITCH FROM ONE EXERCISE TO ANOTHER
Home gyms should be easy to use. They should not require any cable or pulley adjustments when moving from one exercise to another. In addition the weight stack should be adjustable with just the push /pull of a pin.
The cables should be of aircraft quality with a 2000 lb test strength and coated in nylon, while the pulleys should have sealed ball bearings for durability and smoothness. Non-coated cables and pulleys without bearings do not last as long and are not as smooth to use.
CAN BE EXPANDED TO ACCOMMODATE MORE EXERCISES.
Many of today’s gyms allow for an attachment for doing leg presses, squats, and calf raises.
FITS (AND CAN OPERATE) IN THE ROOM YOU INTEND TO PUT IT.
Be sure to measure your space thoroughly. Home gyms can be very small, but can also grow to almost 10 feet wide by 10 feet deep. Some models have an adjustable height to allow for clearance in rooms with lower ceiling heights.
WHAT KIND OF WARRANTY DOES IT HAVE?
Most quality gyms carry a lifetime warranty on their frames. For other components, look for warranty coverage for at least 1 year on labor and a minimum of 2-3 years coverage on the parts. (The most popular home gyms on the market carry a 10 year parts warranty.) Make sure your warranty includes key “wear-and-tear” components (pulleys, cables, upholstery.)
ARE THE SEATS AND PADS COMFORTABLE AND EASY TO ADJUST?
Since most people are of different heights, the seat should adjust to ensure proper positioning and support for every exercise.
ARE YOU COMFORTABLE IN EACH WORKOUT POSITION?
The padding should be comfortable and supportive while exercising. The motion during the exercise should also be bio-mechanically correct. Better engineered machines will allow for specific adjustments in different exercises. These 'range of motion' adjustments accommodate different levels of flexibility for the user.
COME IN AND CHAT — AND LET’S TALK HOME GYMS
Make your local Chicago Home Fitness Store your personal fitness information centre. Bring your questions on stationary bikes — or any aspect of fitness and exercise. Our certified fitness professionals are walking encyclopedias of information and you’ll have all of their attention. They’ll be glad to share their knowledge and help you make informed decisions that will get you the results you want.