Limited Space Workouts
Maybe you’re just planning on using your gym for some simple cardio. If you’re just looking for a space to do some yoga or aerobics without any equipment then the room size needed could be as little as 36 square feet. There are plenty of exercises that can be done in small spaces. Here’s just a few:
- Jump rope – Jumping rope is a mega blast cardio workout. It’s an upper and lower body workout and all you need is a jump rope. The thing is, you don’t even need that. You can skip the jump rope altogether and just mimic the motion, it’s just as effective.
- Bodyweight – One of the best ways, not to mention the cheapest, to get fit is to use your own body weight. From lunges and squats to tone legs, push-ups and tricep dips for arms and mountain climbers and planks for your core, your own body weight may be the best equipment needed.
- HIIT workouts – HIIT workouts stand for high intensity interval training and combines short periods of intense exercise with less intensive recovery. You can scour the internet for all sorts of different HIIT exercises that can all be done in a small space. Cardio moves like jumping jacks and high knees following by pushups and wall sits are perfect for small spaces and will still have you breathing hard and sweating buckets.
How much space do you need for a home gym?
According to the American Council on Exercise (ACE), there are certain guidelines for the amount of space needed, based upon the equipment and exercise you want to do. A simple 10 to 50 square feet of space is all that is required for some cardio equipment and free weights.
Home Gym Equipment Dimensions
If you’re planning on using cardio equipment and have determined where it will go in your space then also think about the type that will get the most use. Don’t buy a treadmill if you hate running. Get a machine that will make you want to work out. For cardio equipment, the ACE recommends reserving 10 to 30 square feet for the machinery. Listed below are common cardio equipment machines and their average sizes to help you find the one that would be perfect for your gym:
- Treadmill – The average size is 64 inches long and 28 inches wide
- Rowing Machine – The average size is 72 inches long
- Exercise Bike – The average size is 35 to 48 inches long and eighteen to twenty-six inches wide
- Elliptical – The average size is 72 inches long and 30 inches wide
If lifting weights is more your thing then you need to be cognizant that the recommended space for weights and weight-lifting equipment is 20 to 50 square feet. Below are averages of such equipment:
- Weight Bench – The average size is 50 inches long and 19 inches wide
- Single Station Home Gym – The average size is 60 inches long and 55 inches wide
In order to save some space, instead of purchasing dumbbells at different sizes consider investing in adjustable dumbbells. With a simple click, you can go from ten pounds to twenty. These dumbbells will save you a ton of space but be aware they can be pricey and you may be shelling out a couple of hundred dollars for a good pair. Another space saver would be an adjustable bench. Benches are necessary for weightlifting to work out different muscles in the body so a bench that can incline or decline in a variety of positions would be helpful. Most are reasonably priced and can usually be stored in a flat position when not in use. With all this weightlifting going on, it would also be prudent to install a full-length mirror so you could keep an eye on your form. Bad form can lead to injury so keeping an eye on yourself can help prevent that.
Choosing An Area
Where will your home gym go? That question, along with what exercises do you plan on doing, are the most important. Home gym measurements can range anywhere from 10 square feet for a bike or stair climber, all the way to 200 square feet if you’re looking for a multistation gym. Planning ahead for the equipment you want, along with options for the best flooring, is imperative. While basements can be a great option – they’re usually cooler; they can also smell musty or have poor lighting. A spare room might work too but it should be a square or rectangle, oddly shaped walls may just waste potential storage space. Maybe the garage would work? It has higher ceilings but may be much hotter in the summer months. Whatever space you decide on you need to be prepared to make a plan for the equipment and flooring.
Home Gym Flooring
One important factor to think about in your home gym is flooring. Since you’re going to sweat a lot, it’s best to have flooring that can be cleaned, durable and is low maintenance. Not only that but you’ll need it to be comfortable and easy on your body. The following options make for some great choices:
- Rubber Tiles – easy to install and keep clean, the rubber is also an excellent shock absorber.
- Carpet Tiles – simple to use and move around but may wear out faster.
- Soft PVC Vinyl – very durable and easy to install but may not be the best shock absorber.
Remember, you’re planning on using this space often so you want the aesthetic to be pleasing so you keep coming back.
Don’t be fooled into thinking you can’t exercise if you have a small space. There are many different types of exercises to do, along with plenty of space-saving equipment to keep you fit and healthy. It’s important to plan your space accordingly so it becomes a gym that you frequent often.