Best Home Gym for Apartment

Share this!

It is so easy to come up with excuses not to have a home gym, and lack of space is a really valid one. Even in a small overcrowded apartment though, you CAN build a home gym that works and is highly effective, you just have to be a little creative. Learn how to build the best home gym for apartment designed by a Certified Personal Fitness Trainer.

**This post might contain affiliate links, please read the full disclosure here.**

best home gym for apartment small space gym

Why You Should Build a Home Gym in Your Apartment

If you have a home gym you are 73% more likely to exercise. That’s some pretty drastic stats. The reason is that having a mini gym right in your home makes it so easy to just sit down (or hop up) and get to business.

You don’t have to change your clothes, you don’t have to pack a gym bag, you don’t have to get in your car and possibly fight traffic getting to the gym, and there is no judgment when your are working out at home.

Having a home gym is a secret to those who successfully stay active and in shape.

You DO NOT need to have a lot of bulky equipment that takes up a lot of room to have a highly effective home gym that can help with strength, mobility, and weight loss. In fact, you don’t need much space at all.

I’ve spent a lot of time in crowded apartments with my family which means all the “extra” room ends up for toys and food and there is no designated home gym space for my stuff.

But I made it work anyway and actually had more home gym equipment in a small apartment than most people I know were keeping in their designated space in their garages. Here I’ll be breaking it all down and sharing my small home gym secrets today.

Things to Exclude from a Home Gym for Apartment

If you are really short on space there are a bunch of items that you do not need to have to build an effective small home gym in your apartment. Envision a gym set up in your head.

Those big bulky machines like treadmills, ellipticals, lat pulldown machines, leg presses, etc. are extravagances you don’t need. In fact, you never need them even if you have a bigger dedicated home gym space.

Don’t get me wrong, they ARE nice to have and can be a fun and simple way to get a great workout, but you by no means need them to stay in shape or to lose weight if that’s your goal too.

You can have a highly effective home gym in your apartment that takes up very little space and can help you reach all your fitness goals without any expensive big bulky machines.

If you ABSOLUTELY want to include a cardio machine there are a couple lower priced versions of stationary bikes and treadmills that fold up for easy storage. They work alright but even I only had those once I was in a house, not an apartment. However, if those are important to you you could consider a small folding stationary bike like this or a How to Set Up a Home Gym for Apartment

You will need a space to use as your home gym, however it doesn’t have to always be a home gym setup.

One of the biggest and best things you can do is have a storage space for your home gym equipment that is easily accessible and you can bring out as needed.

You do not want this stuff to be completely hidden from view though, that’s setting yourself up to ignore it and exercise less.

You know, out of sight out of mind.

You can pick up a small workout gear cart, mount a workout gear hanger on the wall, use a bookshelf, or even just have a corner where you keep everything.

How pretty your mini home gym storage area is is up to you.

I find that keeping the home gym equipment in the TV room is the most helpful in an apartment because when you subscribe to a workout app like Bodi it makes you even more likely to complete really effective workouts at home.

For many years I just tucked all my workout equipment in the corner next to the sofa’s end table. It wasn’t pretty, but it was effective and got a lot of use. Now I’ve got a wall mount thing I picked up on Amazon super cheap that holds yoga mats, blocks, my foam roller, my huge variety of resistance bands, and even more.

Items to Include in the Best Home Gym for Apartment

1. Yoga Mat

how to build a home gym for apartment yoga mat

Whether doing yoga, Pilates, or any other form of floor work, using a yoga mat is ideal. The cushion that a yoga mat provides alleviates a bit of strain on your joints. The stickiness of the mat increases stability and allows for exercise with or without a good pair of workout shoes.

Yoga mats vary quite a bit. So that you can pick the best mat for your apartment home gym here are Amazon’s 100 best selling yoga mats to browse.

2. Resistance Bands

best home gym for apartment resistance bands

Resistance bands are my personal favorite piece of small gym equipment. You SHOULD have a set of dumbbells or two, but chances are you don’t have room for too many in your apartment, that’s where resistance bands come in. They are small enough to be stored anywhere and so versatile that you can exercise almost any muscle in the body with resistance bands.

By utilizing resistance, as opposed to gravity (as traditional weights do) to apply pressure on your muscles, resistance bands lower the strain on your joints when compared to most weights.

There are a couple types of resistance bands that are very cheap for your home gym. You should have a set of looped resistance bands and a set of resistance bands with handles for the most workout versatility.

3. Dumbbells

best home gym for apartment dumbbells

One amazing nonnegotiable piece to have in your home gym is a set of dumbbells or two. Ideally you would like to have at least two sets for targeting different body parts and for increasing resistance as you gain muscle strength.

Dumbbells are ideal for body sculpting and can be used in and endless variety of ways. (Anywhere between 7 and 35 pounds is a typical weight range for dumbbells in your home gym.)

If you have just a little bit more to spend, the best and most versatile set of dumbbells that make the most of your small apartment space are adjustable dumbbells. With varying weights from 3 to 105 lbs you will have the ability to constantly vary your workout.

Whichever type of dumbbell you pick, it is mandatory to include it in your home gym!

4. Kettlebell

best apartment home gym ideas kettlebell

A kettlebell is a single weight that you can grasp in one or both hands and use for working out your entire body. When first beginning exercising with a kettlebell women should start off with a weight around 10 lbs. A common weight for your kettlebell to have in your home gym equipment is 15 or 20 lbs.

Another option that is pretty affordable for your home gym equipment and really allows for your gym to grow with you, is a set of adjustable kettlebells. When making a home gym in an apartment where space is the most limited, the more adjustable pieces you have the better.

On most adjustable kettlebells you can change the weight from 10 -50 lbs to accommodate your strength gains. Imagine getting 6 different weights for the price of 2 kettlebells!

5. Core Sliders

Sliders are a fun and easy way to get in a great full body workout. You can exercise your core and entire body effectively by adding in this small affordable piece of exercise equipment into your apartment gym.

Core Sliders make your workout more challenging by adding slippery disks to your hands and/or feet. Sliders challenge your balance and engage more muscles in your core more than you would otherwise.

6. Yoga Block

Yoga blocks are helpful to your yoga practice but can also be used as a balance trainer in your small space. Chances are that you can’t fit a Bosu ball in your apartment home gym, but you can surely fit a yoga block.

Yoga Blocks can be used to help you get into proper alignment in yoga practice, for other types of stretching exercises, as well as balance training.

7. Yoga Strap

If yoga or stretching is part of your workout routine (which is should be, recovery is important too), a yoga strap is extremely helpful for increasing your comfort by allowing you to properly align your body. A yoga strap is a great way to ease into difficult poses without causing strain or injury.

Your spinal alignment can be much more easily held into place as you advance your yoga or any stretching practice.

8. Medicine Ball

medicine ball for apartment home gym

If you’ve picked up all the gym equipment listed above consider adding in some other small pieces that can make your workouts more fun and add variety. A medicine ball is a weighted ball perfect for all sorts of exercises that you can do at home. This weighted piece of equipment is great for a full-body workout.

There is a lot more that you can do with these weighted balls beyond throwing and catching to increase physical preparedness for athletes. You can clutch the Medicine Ball while doing all kinds of of exercises to increase the intensity of your workout.

10. Chin Up / Pull Up Bar

A chin up bar literally takes up no extra room in your apartment as it hangs in a doorway.

A pull up quickly works your shoulders, arms, back, and core in one simple motion. Just be careful when beginning a pull up on a chin up bar that it is fully secure on the door frame when placing your weight on it. The first time I tried a Chin Up Bar, I flipped it off the door frame and went flying. Somehow I luckily landed on my feet!

11. Weighted Arm Bands

Weighted arm bands are a simple way to take exercises to a higher level of intensity. You can switch up any workout or up it’s intensity by simply strapping on some wrist or ankle weights.

These Weighted Bands can be strapped on either your ankles or wrists to increase the intensity of your workout.

12 .Foam Roller

foam roller

Recovery is equally important as vigorous workouts. Include some recovery equipment in your apartment home gym too.

A foam roller can improve your fitness levels and exercise routine because they aid in myofascial release. A foam roller is much more affordable than massage and other treatments.

Having a simple Foam Roller at home, you will be able to somewhat release your fascia; increase blood flow; and increase range of motion. Not only that, but you will also decrease recovery time and decrease risk of injury in the comfort of your own home.

Find the perfect foam roller for you by browsing Amazon’s top 100 foam rollers. I actually use a soft foam roller as it works better on fascia while a firm one is better for muscles.

13. Fascia Blaster

fascia blaster for muscle recovery in your home gym

If you have heard of the Fasciablaster you may have heard of it’s amazing ability to eliminate cellulite, but that is really just an amazing side effect.

It was originally created to release tight and mangled fascia, the root cause of much of the aches and muscle pain we suffer from when injured. The Fasciablaster is the most effective tool I’ve ever used to immediately release fascia and thus muscle spasms and is an irreplaceable piece of workout recovery equipment. There are many different sizes and models but the original FasciaBlaster is a great place to start.

14. Massage Gun

The most popular recovery tool to see on the sideline of sports games these days is a massage gun. These handy little tools cut down on recovery time and can keep you in the game (even if only in the home gym workout game).

With multiple speeds and multiple massage heads, a nice recovery massage gun can help you keep pushing on your workouts each day.

15. Exercise Programs

While this isn’t a piece of equipment, it’s something you absolutely should include in the best home gym for apartment.

So to be sure your home gym is successful you may want to get your own Health Coach, join an accountability group, and find a workout plan that works for you! (Coaches help you with that too.) My favorite workout programs are from Bodi for so many reasons, but mostly because they really have EVERYTHING all in one place; over 1500 workouts.

You can find almost any type of workout, for any length of time, and stream it easily across all your devices. Give Bodi home workouts a try now, plus if you sign up through me you are automatically hiring me as your personal coach and getting a pass into my virtual fit club! So feel free to reach out directly at vigoritout@gmail.com before signing up if you want to see if there are any promos or deals I can score you.

Wrapping Up How to Make a Perfect Home Gym in an Apartment

You don’t need all of these pieces of equipment for the perfect apartment home gym. But I would include a lot of them. You should have a set of standard weights (like dumbbells or kettlebells) and resistance bands too. You should have a mat for stability and to protect your joints, and also at least one piece of recovery equipment. Lastly, try to add in as many small pieces from this list that you can fit in your designated workout space and that you can afford.

All the equipment on this list also happen to be super affordable. I’ve accumulated every single one of these throughout the years and they really don’t take up too much space until you start adding multiple sets of things like dumbbells and such.

Share this!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.