The BEST Compact Home Gym Essentials

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Thinking about working out from home and have limited space for equipment?

A common myth is that you will NOT achieve your goals while working out from home. But I’m here to tell you that it is possible, especially with the right equipment.

A home gym will save you money (in the long run) on gym memberships, but most importantly, working out is a great investment for your health.

We have many clients who prefer to workout from home as they want to find a routine they love that allows them to be consistent. Their goals can vary from weight loss, increasing lean muscle mass, increasing energy levels, to simply achieving a healthier lifestyle.

Below are some of our favorite products that we love to use, are great space savers, and we recommend to our clients who workout from home.

1. Pull Up Bar

On a proper door frame, this particular Pull Up Bar can hold up to 300 lbs of bodyweight. The soft grip on the bar allows you to perform pull ups with comfort and without slipping.

This particular model has a wide grip allowing you to perform various ranges of motion. 

When placing the bar on the floor, you can use it to perform push ups and dips!

If you’re looking for a pull up bar with some versatility, look no further.

2. Adjustable Dumbbells

This particular set ranges from 5 to 50 lbs (each dumbbell). This ultimately takes the space of 16 PAIRS of dumbbells! Talk about a space saver! 

Changing the weight is fairly quick and easy to do. The only CON would be when you are doing a timed superset. It takes a little more time to adjust the weight within 5 lb increments, but other than that, these dumbbells are essential for a home gym.

You can also purchase expansion sets that will allow you to lift up to 90 lbs per hand. If your goal is to increase lean muscle mass while working out from home, these dumbbells would be something to consider.

Out of all the adjustable dumbbells, this particular brand is consistently rated the best overall dumbbell.

3. Resistance Bands

Another essential piece of equipment to your home gym are resistance bands. Resistance bands are versatile and are even portable (comes with a travel bag, which is great for storage)!

There have been many vacations where we’ve brought our bands along for a quick hotel workout. These bands are lightweight, compact, and fit great in the front part of the suitcase (that no one uses).

This particular set comes with ankle straps, door anchors, and adjustable handles.

The weight ranges from 20 lbs to 50 lbs allowing you to adjust the weight for working out different areas of the body, as well as increasing your intensity.

Lastly, bands are great for warming up the body prior to your workout.

4. Fabric Bands

Now let’s talk about fabric bands.

Fabric bands also help to warm up the body, but specifically your legs and glutes.

Have you ever heard of glute activation? If not, it truly is what it sounds like. You are warming up your glutes, activating your muscle, so when you perform your squats or other movements targeting the glutes, the exercise will be more effective (increasing strength and reducing risk of injury).

This set comes with 3 different bands, each band having a different level of resistance, with an inside grip to avoid sliding down your leg while you workout.

Another piece of equipment that is lightweight and portable for your next work trip or vacation!

5. TRX Suspension Trainer

The TRX is by far one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can have at home. Talk about a full body workout. You can hang this trainer from the wall (via the carabiner) or through a door jam (hello portability). Another product Gavin and I travel with regularly on vacation and has a travel bag!

The TRX Suspension Trainer has been proven to hold up to 700 lbs… 700 lbs! Quite impressive for a suspension trainer. TRX has been the gold standard for suspension trainers ever since it came out on the market.

Another plus is that the handles are very comfortable. Whether you are using the trainer to perform a squat or push up, the handles will support you with ease and no pain.

The foot cradles are also a great feature to perform standing and floor based exercises.

I can talk all day about the benefits of this suspension trainer, but I won’t bore you. If you are looking for a quality product, this is the one.

6. Cushioned Gym Mat

I feel like I keep saying this, but this mat is truly one of the best products on this list. Coming from someone who suffers from tendinosis in both wrists and arms due to working on a computer all day. Performing any exercises using my wrists used to be a big no no… until I found this mat.

The amount of support this mat provides is like NO other. I never experienced any pain while using this mat. It truly is worth every penny.

The mat contains a sponge-like support with ⅝ inch thickness. I promise you’ll never feel the ground when your bodyweight is pressed against this mat.

The mat is also durable and has two sturdy rings that can hang your mat for easy use and storage. You can either use Command strip hooks on the back of the door or the wall mount to save space on your floor.

7. Wall Organizer

Alright, I know this one isn’t a piece or equipment, but it’s important to include on this list for a gym with limited floor space!

If you’re anything like me, everything in your home has a place, whether it’s currently in its spot right now or not. Organization is the KEY to life, am I right?

Working out from home can be tough without the right products and the perfect environment. Recreate a space within your home that inspires you to workout every time you pass it.

This wall unit will be able to store your resistance bands, fabric bands, TRX trainer (if not mounted), foam roller, and yoga mats!

This wall organizer works great in your office, basement, and even in the garage. You can purchase it in three different colors; black, white, and chrome.

9. Foam Roller

LAST, but not least… the foam roller! My absolute favorite piece of equipment you need if you’re working out in ANY space, no matter the size.

Would you believe there was a time I hated foam rolling? Why? Well, because it hurts. 

The good news is with repetitive use, it gets easier to use. Using a foam roller aids in releasing tight muscles.

I was constantly throwing out my back and experiencing shooting pains down my hips. The pain kept me from walking and/or sitting for long periods of time. After a few months of physical therapy, I learned how to stretch and the importance of foam rolling.

What keeps me coming back to the foam roller after tough workouts or in the morning when I wake up? The motivation to never go through that pain again. And let me tell you, it works.

Even if you’re going for regular walks with light exertion, you need a foam roller. The combination of stretching and foam rolling is beneficial to anyone who works out, walks, runs, or sits for long periods of time to prevent tight muscles and any potential future injuries.

Well there you have it; the essentials for your compact gym! If I left something out or you personally have one of these items at home, comment below!

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