The first thing to realize about
purchasing a Home Gym is that they all do virtually
the same exercises. Whether you spend $7000 on an
elaborate 4-Stack model of $500 on a Taiwan made unit,
you will generally be able to perform a few exercises
for each muscle group. Try to fit your space and
budget with the best unit to fit your needs.
Remember that it is not necessarily
what exercises the gym can perform. It is how they are
performed. For instance, a shoulder press may be done
leaning forward on the entry-level unit. Doing an
overhead press with a lumbar support on a more
advanced model may be a better way to perform the same
exercise. If you are suffering from back problems it
may be worth your while to go for the more expensive
machine so that you will have the proper support. The
same thought process goes for exercises such as the
standing leg curl versus a seated or prone leg curl.
Advances in Home Gym technology
have evolved this industry from the chrome
space-eating monsters of 10 years ago to the sleek
vertical-press machines of today. Feature like
free-floating handles that can mimic the feel of
dumbbells are allowing users to experience a
converging axis of movement, producing a more sculpted
body. The body has a natural intuitive path of
movement for each of the functions that it performs.
For a Home Gym manufacturer to attempt to re-create
those same biomechanics is a very difficult task.
What’s even more difficult, is to produce 30-40
biomechanically correct movements on a single machine
that fits into 25 square feet of less.
So what should you focus on to
make a smarter purchase? Stick to the basics.
Start by trying the 10-12 most important movements and
listen to your body. Do your feet rest squarely on the
floor? Does the roller pad roll up or down your leg on
a leg extension? Can you do lat pulldowns with a full
extension? If you are comfortable with the answers to
questions such as those, you will want to look at the
construction. What gauge steel, cable stretch,
bushings, bearings, etc.
Try to select a machine that
suits most of your needs. Since this process
usually involves the whole family, it may be necessary
to compromise and find alternate ways to train a
muscle group. You sales professionals online as well
as those in fitness specialty stores will be happy to
walk you through your first workout.