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How to Set Up a Home Fitness Studio

Traveling from client to client is the norm for trainers who lead at-home workouts. I usually bring equipment to my clients’ homes, but I have a handful of clients who own their own fitness equipment that we incorporate into training. I am super excited to bring to you a post about how to set up a home fitness room or home gym.

I personally think it’s best to stick with the basics by having weights, resistance bands, mini loop bands, a mat or comfortable flooring, a flat bench and investing in a quality piece of cardio equipment that works your whole body like an Arc Trainer, SPARC or Hydro Rower.

Let’s break down my go-to home fitness equipment:

Resistance Bands

Resistance bands are one of the best things you can get for your at-home gym. You can do basic moves like bicep curls, shoulder presses, rows and tons of core work with simple resistance bands. You can also usually “anchor” the resistance bands in between a door or loop it around a pole, which makes it even easier to use.

Dumbbells for Resistance Work

In addition to resistance bands, I also recommend using dumbbells for resistance work. Dumbbells are the base of many training programs and can be utilized in so many ways. I suggest getting a set of 5-, 10- and 20-pound dumbbells to start. You can use the lighter ones for movements like straight arm lateral raises, the medium ones for overhead presses or bicep curls, and then a heavier set for dumbbell squats, lunges and rows. The muscles involved in these last movements are often the strongest muscles in your body and can pull heavier weights.

Mini Loop Bands

I love mini loop bands! These are basically a mini circle resistance band that you can loop around your legs, ankles or wrists for some awesome exercises. Mini loop bands are great for squats, squat form, plank jacks and so much more. They are also great to utilize in your mobility and warm ups to reallyactivate the glutes with moves like a lateral band walk.

A Mat For Floor Exercises

A simple yoga mat or padded mat would be a great choice for your home gym. You’ll be thankful to have some type of cushioning for movements when you’re on your hands, elbows or on your back.

Flat Bench

flat bench or a wood box would be an awesome idea for plyometric “jump training” moves, bench presses, tricep dips, core work and especially step ups. Look for a bench that is sturdy and has a decent weight capacity so you know you’re getting durability and  quality in your home gym.

Full Body Cardio Equipment - Top Three Pieces 

I recommend a piece of cardio equipment that works the full body and not just the legs. I personally have used all three of these in my training and can give each the 5-Star Trainer Stamp Of Approval.

Arc Trainer

The Cybex Arc Trainer has been a favorite of mine for years! I remember back in college when there would seriously be a wait list for the 2 Arc Trainers we had in our gym (which was nicknamed the ARC) while the other conventional ellipticals stood empty. The Arc Trainer allows your body to move in a more natural motion than regular ellipticals and is easier on the joints. I love cranking up the resistance and climbing angle for some intervals and sprints.


The Cybex SPARC is one of the coolest new fitness products to hit the market! I am obsessed with this thing any time I can get my hands...and feet...on one. You basically take the Arc Trainer and combine it with a Rower and you’ve got a SPARC! It is so easy to use; you just set it, get on and GO! Your lungs will be challenged, but your body will thank you. It’s easy on the joints while still delivering a full high performance workout.

Hydro Rower

The Cybex Hydro Rower is the ideal solution for a total-body, non-impact workout from the comfort of your home. I recently did a shoot with Cybex featuring the Hydro Rower that you can find here on YouTube to show you how to get started. The Hydro Rower features four resistance levels that can be adjusted on-the-fly to accommodate and challenge every rower. You can row for time, distance, or add it into a circuit with dumbbells and resistance bands for a total full body workout

If you need help sticking to your fitness goals, use these tips to stay on track and try out a new workout move, like toe taps.

Looking For A New Workout To Try?
The Cybex Workout Center has free workouts organized around the four most popular fitness goals. Try them at the gym or in your home workout studio space.

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