This time of year, many are looking to buy home exercise equipment…here are some must do’s and don’t do’s.


This time of year, many are looking to buy home exercise equipment…here are some must do’s and don’t do’s.


Full disclosure I owned a commercial gym and sold it this year.





Here are some of the pieces equipment I have.

1). Power block dumbbells.  They take up very little space.  One set to 50 lbs. and one to 90 lbs. Plenty for at home for 99% of the population.  The 90 lb. power blocks are a commercial set, and this is one occasion where I think the standard home version is made better. ($150-$200 on Facebook)

2).  Diamond trap bar for deadlifts and heavy carries.  This makes the deadlift idiot proof and will allow most to safely train the posterior chain with significant weight and do so SAFELY.   No spot needed. ($60-$150 on Facebook)

3).  Slam ball.  Great for metabolic work. ($20-$30 on Facebook)

4). Olympic bumper plates.  You only need a few full-size diameter plates.  Then you can use cast iron 35, 25, 10, and 5 lb. plates without destroying your floor. ($90 for a pair of bumper 45 lb. plates…. The cast Iron I would find on craigslist)

5).  Barn mats from your local ag supply store…  $20-$30 each… get the 3/4-inch-thick ones.

6).  Optional:  Land mine for unlimited functional movements.

.$500 would get you the above set up.

Each of these are pictured.


Most of these items can be found for CHEAP on Facebook marketplace or craigslist.  Commercial equipment will outlast the user, check your local gym, Xfit box or the likes.  Mine came from my club.



I also have cast dumbbells, a commercial life fitness tread, STOTT Pilates Reformer, Cable crossover and more.  Most of this is unnecessary.


Avoid these 3 Mistakes


1).  Shop for used and save.  Do not buy new and if you do try and negotiate on price or at minimum delivery!

2).  You, your sig other or whomever SWEARS they are going to use a treadmill or other piece of cardio at home… Won’t!  Take the money and spend it on a nice weekend getaway.  The getaway will be more fun and memorable… and you will not have to list it on Facebook or craigslist in a few months.  OR…  consider getting a to scale cardboard cutout printed and set it in the spare bedroom or the basement….  this way they can see it….no worry about not being able to use it as they are not going to use it anyways.   There is always that one person that reads this and uses their treadmill at home… one person you are the exception.

3).  If you are not buying commercial equipment make sure it is not unsafe, low quality or unusable.  Home treadmills are narrower and have a shorter deck than commercial treads and some people are too wide and have too long a stride length to run on them.  99% of home cardio has NO replacement part market or service… so if something breaks the whole unit is JUNK.  Once per year someone would call the gym asking for help repairing a home piece of cardio equipment…  even the problem could be diagnosed there was no place to get parts…. Home benches and racks are not well made or have bolts where there should be welds for safety reasons… and they shift, shake and wobble during use.



Must Do’s

1). Check Facebook marketplace and craigslist

2).  Talk to the local mom and pop gym or xfit box…  used commercial is far better than the highest quality home equipment.

3).  Google used equipment suppliers in your market…  look into buying used commercial from them or even contact Life Fitness they will sell certified preowned for 40-50 cents on the dollar of new… Companies like sell replacement parts and have a great support staff to help with repairs.



I sold plenty of used commercial equipment to members, former members and people in the community over the years.  Even gave it away on occasion.




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