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16 Essential Pieces of Home Gym Equipment

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Some individuals prefer working out at home versus at a gym. The reasons are many: reduced commute, easier access, and the lack of an expensive gym membership,  just to name a few. Overall, home gyms offer convenience, flexibility, and a personalized workout environment. Therefore, there is no one-size-fits-all model for what a home gym should look like or what equipment it should have.

Nevertheless, there are some essential pieces that an effective home workout space should include. Here we’ve rounded up the best home gym items in 2023, no matter whether your customers are looking for cardio, strength training, or functional exercise equipment.

Table of Contents
Overview of the gym equipment market
Essential equipment for home gyms

Overview of the gym equipment market

The global gym market was worth US $7 million in 2022 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.8% to reach over US $12 million by the end of 2032.

The gym market’s exceptional growth is mostly due to a growing global awareness around health and fitness, with doctors and governments advising people to indulge in physical exercise to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Celebrities, influencers, and sports stars are also promoting healthy lifestyles, thus incentivizing young people to do the same. In order to maintain healthy physiques, people are increasingly investing in gym memberships or constructing their own at-home gyms, thus boosting the growth of the gym equipment market.

Essential equipment for home gyms

Some of the most popular home gym equipment includes cardio equipment, strength training tools, functional training gear, and workout recovery tools. Below we’ll take a closer look at each.

Essential cardio equipment

Incorporating cardio exercises into a fitness routine is important for achieving a well-balanced and healthy lifestyle. Cardio helps in improving heart health, lowering blood pressure, and burning calories.

Cardio exercises can be easily done at home, which makes it the first choice when setting up a home gym. According to data analyzing the US home fitness equipment market share, cardiovascular training equipment was the most in-demand product in 2022.

US home fitness equipment market share

Let’s take a look at the essential cardio equipment for home gyms.


tread mill is essential home gym equipment

Treadmills remain a favorite piece of gym equipment for losing weight and maintaining a daily cardio routine. Moreover, they make an ideal choice for individuals who wish to maintain their running routine regardless of weather conditions.

Here are the criteria for selecting a treadmill:

  • Frame: The frame should remain stable and the treadmill shouldn’t shake while running and walking. A sturdy frame should have a wide, heavy, and steel base.
  • Motor horsepower: Horsepower affects the quality of the treadmill and workouts. Find a motor with a minimum of 1.5 continuous-duty horsepower for normal use. Runners should choose a 2.5 to 3.0 CHP horsepower.
  • Belt size: The belt should be approximately 48 inches long and 18 inches wide for running. For individuals six-feet tall or above, it should be 52 inches for walking and 54 inches for running.
  • Control panel: The machine should feature easy-to-use controls
  • Cushioning: A high-quality running bed should absorb shock effectively, ensuring a smooth running experience. Additionally, the running belt should remain stable and not move excessively with each foot strike.
  • Incline and decline: The treadmill should have a minimum incline of 10% and a decline feature that provides a good simulation of outdoor running conditions
  • Speed: Runners should consider a treadmill that goes at least 10mph or higher 

Stationary bikes

stationary bike is must have for home gym

A stationary bike is a core piece for a home gym, offering low-impact cardiovascular exercises that strengthen lower joints by targeting quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and glutes. Moreover, it tones the lower body and helps in weight loss.

To find a perfect stationary bike for a home gym consider these pointers:


Stationary bikes will be priced according to several features, including their weight, resistance, and whether they have a built-in tablet or Wi-Fi connection.

  • Expensive bikes are heavier, have more settings, and have magnetic resistance
  • Less expensive bikes are lightweight and provide friction-based resistance, most often without tablets and other smart features

Stationary bikes have two main types:

  • Upright: These are like traditional bikes and have a narrow seat and pedals below. It offers a full-body workout.
  • Recumbent: These feature a more reclined seating position. This makes them more suitable for individuals with balance and mobility issues, providing good workouts without putting stress on the body.

A good exercise bike allows the user to adjust the seat height according to their height and body type. Select bikes whose seat height, horizontal position, and handlebar height are adjustable.

Resistance level

Choose bikes that offer adjustable resistance levels. Different resistance levels allow for changing the intensity of the workout.

Display console

Find a bike with a display console that displays metrics like speed, calories burned, heartbeat, distance, and time.


Find a bike that doesn’t produce noise. Noise can cause distractions during workouts and disturb others nearby. 


Source bikes that have a lock feature so that children cannot accidentally turn on the bike, potentially causing injury.

Strength training equipment

Strength training involves exercises that focus on strengthening and toning muscles.

Strength training is crucial for improving metabolic rate, reducing body fat, and increasing bone density.

Strength training doesn’t require much equipment, making it easy to stock a home gym with just a few essentials. These include:

Adjustable dumbbells 

adjustable dumbbells are must have for home gym

Dumbbells are the most versatile and important piece of home gym equipment. They are perfect for strength training, building lean muscles, and improve overall fitness levels.

They are often used for bicep curls, tricep extensions, and shoulder presses as well as more intensive exercises like lunges, squats, and deadlifts. They are effective for toning, shaping, and strengthening muscles for a more toned and defined psyche.

Adjustable dumbbells are especially good for home gyms as they are affordable and don’t take up too much space.

When selecting dumbells for a home gym, consider the following factors:

  • Most dumbbells weigh between 10 to 90 pounds, in 5-pound increments
  • Adjustable weights can carry anywhere between 4.4lbs (2kg) to 88lbs (40kg) 

Steel and heavy-duty plastic dumbbells are the most durable types of adjustable dumbbells. They are compact and easy to use, cost-effective, and the quickest to load and unload. 

They can be adjusted to the desired weight, making them ideal for beginners and advanced fitness enthusiasts.


When choosing adjustable dumbbells for a home gym, prioritize comfort and grip. Opt for dumbbells with ergonomically designed handles that offer a comfortable grip, reducing strain on hands and wrists. 

Additionally, look for dumbbells with a non-slip surface or textured grip, as this can improve stability and help prevent accidents while exercising.

Resistance bands

resistance bands are important tool for home gym

Resistance bands are lightweight and easy to transport, making them a great choice for working out at home. Resistance bands are versatile tools for strength training and rehabilitation.

They offer resistance when stretched and target specific muscle groups. They are gentle on joints and provide an effective workout option.

Resistance band workouts can be adjusted to match the intensity of any fitness level, which makes them ideal for people of all ages and fitness levels. 

When shopping for resistance bands, look at these factors:


Resistance bands come in two main types:

  • Closed-loop design: These are preferred for their versatility
  • Open-ended design: These offer the ability to add other accessories like handles and ankle straps, offering increased comfort and grip

Resistance bands use a color-coded system to reflect their strength, and brands provide their own color codes. 

However, a a simple trick to remember is: light-color bands have low strength (5-10lbs or 2.3-4.6kg) while dark color bands have high strength (25-30lbs or 11.4-13.6kg). Opt for thick-resistance brands.


Fabric bands offer lower-body workouts while latex bands provide more stretch, hence making them more ideal for upper body exercises, stretching, and joint stability exercises.


kettle bells are essential equipment to create home gym

Kettlebells are another favorite home gym essential for strength trainers. Unlike traditional weight-lifting equipment, kettlebells use dynamics and blastic movements that engage multiple muscle groups at once, making them effective and efficient tools for building strength and improving cardiovascular endurance. They therefore make for great for full-body workouts targeting major muscle groups such as the arms, legs, back, and core.

When shopping for kettlebells, look for these factors:


Oval-shaped cast iron balls come in various weights, allowing for a range of excercises to be performed.


Look for a polished steel or stainless handle that should be sturdy, smooth, and not too wide or too narrow.


Kettlebells come in a wide range of weights, from around 8-24kg.

Pull-up bars 

pull up bar is essential equipment to create a home gym

Pullup bars are designed to help people achieve a stronger, healthier upper body. They are a simple yet versatile tool that can be used to perform a wide range of exercises that target muscles in the back, arms, and shoulders.

Consider these factors when selecting a pull-up bar for home gyms:


Doorway-mounted bars, wall-mounted bars, ceiling-mounted bars, and free-standing bars are the most common types of pull-up bars for home gyms. Select according to space and desired exercise needs.

Number of bolts

A pull-up bar’s safety directly correlates to the number of bolts that it has. Secure pull-up bars should have at least six bolts.


Find a pull-up bar that has different grip options, like wide grip, neutral grip, and close grip. Pull-up bars with foam padding and grip covers enhance comfort and reduce strain on the hands and wrists. High-grade steel or heavy-duty metal bars tend to be more long-lasting and durable.

Functional training equipment

Functional training involves the utilization of multiple muscle groups simultaneously, promoting harmonious coordination for everyday tasks. Functional training improves body strength, balance, and mobility.

Functional training requires more ground space to perform exercises.

Buy initiative equipment that requires minimum space but offers a variety of exercises. Here are the types of functional training equipment for home gyms:

Medicine balls

medicine ball is must have tool for home gym

Medicine balls are a budget-friendly and efficient piece of equipment for home gyms that improve core, posture, and spine health. They are mainly used in core workouts alongside exercises like crunches, rollouts, and Russian twists.

Look for these factors for buying a medicine ball:


Beginners should start training with a 4-5-pound medicine ball. Individuals with some functional training experience can opt for 7-8-pound balls. Advanced-level trainers should buy a 12-pound ball.


Rubber balls provide more grip and durability. Synthetic balls are affordable and beginner-friendly. Select a ball with a textured surface as it gives grip during exercises when the user’s hands become sweaty.


Medicine balls come in bouncy or non-bouncy varieties. Bouncy types are used for exercises like throwing and rebounding. Non-bouncy types are preferred for stability and control exercises.

Suspension trainers

suspension trainer is essential equipment for home gym

Suspension trainers are a great investment for home gyms. They use body weight to deliver a comprehensive and versatile strength training experience for the entire body. They can be used for push-ups and pull-ups for upper-body routines or for glutes, hamstrings, and core routines for the lower body.

When selecting a suspension trainer for your home gym, consider the following factors:


When choosing a suspension trainer for your home gym, prioritize longevity by opting for a set that can withstand rigorous use. Look for straps that are strong and thick, and ensure that the handles are made of high-quality rubber or foam to help them withstand constant wear and tear. 

Additionally, select mount hardware and anchors that are sturdy, versatile, and easy to attach. These features will contribute to the overall durability and reliability of your suspension trainer.


Safety is very important for suspension trainer workouts. Look for industrial-grade materials, reinforced strap stitching, and sufficient load-bearing weight-capacity suspension trainers.

Make sure their buckles, clips, anchors, and mounts are made of sturdy, durable metals like zinc alloy or aluminum, and that any pins or fabric stitching at connecting points are uniform and undamaged.


Look for suspension trainers with rubber handles to avoid blisters. Rubber handles with grip treads are best, as opposed to harder plastic or cheap foam which can be irritating and cause blisters. Anchor design should be geared toward providing comfort during moves, as well as weathering wear and tear. 

Battle ropes

battle ropes are important equipment to create home gym

Battle ropes offer fun, versatile, and high-intensity workouts. They’re effective for lower-body workouts that improve explosive power, burn calories, increase endurance, improve coordination, and build muscles.

Consider these factors before buying a battle rope:


Look for battle ropes that are made of poly dacron, a durable material that is resistant to wear and water.


Battle ropes are available in three main lengths: 30 (recommended if space is limited), 40 (generally good for beginners), and 50 feet (for those with medium to advanced fitness). 


Battle ropes are available in two thicknesses: 1.5-inch and 2-inch ropes. A 1.5-inch rope is ideal for cardio workouts, while a 2-inch rope is good for body strength and improved grip for those with smaller hands.

Bodyweight training equipment

Bodyweight exercises use body weight as resistance and require minimum tools, making them a good type of exercise for beginners.

Bodyweight exercises help to build lean muscle, strengthen joints and bones, and maintain a healthy metabolism.

These are the best bodyweight training equipment for home gyms:

Yoga mats

yoga mat is essential equipment to create a home gym

Yoga mats are an essential component of any well-equipped home gym. They provide cushion support for floor-based and stretching exercises and are easily packed up and stored up after a workout.

Factors to consider before buying a yoga mat include:


Choose a thick mat that provides cushioning and support during workouts. An ideal yoga mat is 4-5mm thick.


Yoga mats are available in three main materials: PVC, TPE (thermoplastic elastomer), and natural materials (i.e. cotton and jute). PVC is the most durable material, while TPE is eco-friendly. So too are cotton mats but they require frequent washing.


The texture of a yoga mat plays a significant role in enhancing personal comfort during practice. Sticker mats have a rough texture, making them suitable for intense yoga poses. Meanwhile,PVC mats are smooth, potentially leading to slippage during sweatier workouts.

Ab wheels 

ab wheel is essential equipment to create a home gym

Ab wheels are a superhero in the world of ab workouts. A strong core supports the entire body, and ab wheels are a powerful tool for toning the midsection and upper body.

Factors to consider when buying an ab wheel include:


Durability depends upon the material used for manufacturing the ab wheel. A thick, stainless steel ab wheel is more durable than a plastic one.


Look for handles that are easy to hold, like foam handles and non-slip handles.


Ab wheels have one to four wheels, providing more stability the more wheels they have.


parallettes is essential equipment to create a home gym

Parallettes are another important tool for home gyms. They build strength and muscle through high-impact upper-body workouts and improves wrist mobility.

Consider these factors before buying parallettes:


Wood parallettes are considered more comfortable, PVC are more affordable, and metal parallettes are more durable. Choose the material that suits your needs.


The weight capacity of parallettes typically ranges from 200 to 450lbs.

Height and width

Choose parallettes that have a height and width suitable for your fitness level and intended use. Standard heights range from 12-24 inches, while widths can vary from 12-18 inches. Consider your comfort and the exercises you intend to try.

Workout recovery tools

Workout recovery tools are important to increase blood flow and circulation and prevent body soreness after a workout. They also help to reduce tightness and inflammation, speeding up tissue repair.

Here are a few workout recovery tools that make for a great home gym:

Foam rollers

foam rollers are important equipment to create a home gym

Foam rollers help to heal muscle soreness after exercise, targeting tense and overworked muscles through tissue massages.

Use a foam roller on the back, hips, legs, arms, as well as other parts of the body to reduce muscle knots.

Consider these factors before buying a foam roller:


Beginners should use a soft (less dense) foam roller before moving onto denser (harder) rollers. Dense rollers are preferable for their added durability.


Choose a size that suits your needs, such as a longer roller for full-body exercises or a smaller one for targeted muscle groups.

Massage guns

massage gun is important equipment to create a home gym

Massage guns also help to heal muscle soreness by targeting specific muscles. This massage tool offers an easy solution for achieving muscle pain relief from the convenience of a home gym.

Factors to consider before buying a massage gun include:


A massage gun with multiple pressure settings and attachments is best as they can be used both for general physical maintenance and therapeutic relief.


Most massage guns’ amplitudes range from 6-16 millimeters. The sensation is directly proportional to amplitude. Most individuals tolerate 10-12mm messages comfortably.

Additional home gym features

Some other home gym essentials are:

Wall mirrors

wall mirror is essential equipment to create a home gym

Wall mirrors are an important part of home gyms, allowing individuals to check their posture during workouts as an incorrect posture can lead to injury.

In addition, fitness enthusiasts can check their progress, check their form, and improve their fitness. Moreover, mirrors reflect light, which brightens up the room and can make them look bigger.

Size and thickness

Three by five feet is a good size for home gym mirrors. They can be hung vertically or horizontally. Meanwhile, 3-5mm-thick mirrors make for ideal gym mirrors.

Dumbbell and kettlebell racks 

storing dumbbells and kettlebells

Storing dumbbells and kettlebells is important for their upkeep. Moreover, they should be organized so they can be easily accessible and don’t take up much space. If these tools are not stored in a place, they may also cause an accident.

Consider these factors before buying dumbbell and kettlebell racks:


Racks should be sturdy and durable. Therefore, look for racks made of a material like steel.


Also consider the design and layout of the rack. Look for features like rubber-coated holders or non-slip surfaces to protect your kettlebells and dumbbells from damage and provide stability.


Retailers in the fitness industry recognize the growing demand for home gym equipment as consumers increasingly prioritize health and fitness. Here, we’ve highlighted a range of essential home gym products, encompassing cardio equipment, strength training tools, functional training gear, bodyweight essentials, workout recovery tools, and storage solutions.

Understanding the diverse needs, preferences, and budgets of customers is key for retailers. By carefully curating a selection of high-quality, durable, and safe home gym equipment, retailers can cater to this expanding market. Remember that consumers value convenience, personalization, and flexibility in their fitness routines.

Armed with these insights into what makes an effective home gym setup, head over to Alibaba.com to browse the thousands of available home gym products.

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