There are several categories of home gym equipment that one can choose to include in a home gym. Generally, home gym equipment can be broken down along the following classifications, free weights, weight machines, resistance machines, and equipment geared towards cardiovascular exercising. Home gym equipment should be chosen based on careful consideration of individual abilities and needs.
Free weights are an important staple in many home gyms. They come in various forms. For instance, free weights can be used with barbells, which consist of a bar that has free weights on both ends and is made for use with two hands. Similar to barbells, only smaller, dumbbells usually hold less weight and are designed for use in one hand. Fee weights are useful for performing a myriad of resistance exercises targeting muscle development such as bicep curls and bench presses.
Similar to free weights, weight machines are designed for resistance training that builds muscle. Weight machines are machines that use weight stacks for resistance. They come in numerous forms including the leg press, designed to strengthen the legs, and the bench press, designed to train the arms. More sophisticated weight machines combine various types of exercises and, with a little manipulation, are capable of transforming from a leg press into a bench press or a pectoral fly device.
Resistance machines are designed to work in the same manner as traditional weight machines, only they do not utilize weight stacks for resistance. Rather, resistance machines consist of either composite rods or a series of cables that provide resistance. It is possible to perform many of the same exercises on resistance machines as free weights and weight machines, but there are some exercises that cannot be done on certain types of resistance machines. For instance, it is impossible to perform squats and lunges while working on most cable machines.
The other important type of home gym equipment is cardiovascular equipment. Cardiovascular home gym equipment is designed to use during a cardiovascular workout and can range from complex machines to simple mats. Machines come in a variety of forms including treadmills, which are suitable for running and walking, stair-climbers, which simulate climbing stairs, and stationary bikes and elliptical machines. Each of these machines works by increasing the heart rate. Other types of cardiovascular home gym equipment include mats for aerobics, jump ropes, and steps that are designed for use during a step aerobics workout.