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"Home Gym" things to consider?


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as my gym membership comes to an end in little more than a month I'm becoming more positive that it would be best to get some stuff and start lifting heavy, at home.

Now, are there any specifics I have to pay attention to?

I've been looking around on internet shops and found some nice gear but I'm not really sure what to look out for.

The bench of my desire is adjustable in 3 different heights, 4 different positions (making it suitable for flat bench press, incline and even decline! ) with a max loadabilty of 250kg (conside my bw at roughly 80kg and that's more than enough for some time). The pricing should be fine with 80€

The squat rack is 87x120cm and 7x adjustable in the height between 100 and 170cm, weight 25kg itself and has a loadability of 350kg. There are also 3 holder on lower positions and you can put keep your weights on a mounting. Price 140€ and gummi feet.

A 187cm barbell with 30mm. I don't have a lot of space but I was told that a long bar is important if you want to rack up weight. 30€

A neck pad 14€

a chair mat that covers the space where I'd lower the weight ~20€

regular weights 130kg; 170€


I already have some dumbbells with up to 15kg weight that would fit.


The overall price would be little more than an other year in the gym and probably more worthwile.

Are there things I have to consider purchasing these articles that I'm not aware of?

It might be wort mentioning that my max bench press is roughly 85kg, with the deadlift at 80kg and the squat at 100 (although I have to go lower again to get better form).

There's probably some imbalance between my lifts, I started squatting and dl-ing quite late.


Thanks for any input, I can't provide links to these articles right now so I made the description. And sorry if there will be some inconvenience with the kg/ cm data ;)

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Is the barbell you are speccing an Olympic barbell or standard? A 6 foot bar could go either way. Make sure it is an Oly bar with 2 inch rotating sleeves on the end, not a thin bar from end to end. Standard bars are usually only good to about 150-200 pounds and cheap Oly bars aren't a whole lot better. I just had to invest in a better barbell because my cheap package bar just bent (permanently) from a 315lb sumo pull. If you have the cash laying around see if you can get a Capp Texas Power Bar if available on your side of the pond. If not, I don't know what quality brands there are over there. A bar for 30 pounds seems really, really cheap and suspect.


Skip the maxi pad and get your traps used to the weight of the bar. It only takes a couple sessions and it ends up sitting much more securely.


You might also want to pick up a pair of Olympic style dumbbell handles. It makes any future buys of dumbbells unnecessary since you'll be able to use your Oly plates. It's not such a big deal with curls and such, but db pressing and Kroc rows get light fast.


Is the squat rack a pair of stands,  squat rack, or a power rack? If it is a power rack then see if you can get a chin-up bar for it. If not then see about getting your paws on a chin bar of some kind, or something like Blast Straps or a TRX knock-off.


Don't forget a place to keep your chalk. Since you don't have to worry about any pussies whining about chalk, then use it... LOTS of it!

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Thanks for your reply!

The barbell I'm speccing is a standart one that is listed with up to 200kg weight use. The plates thus fit with my current db.

If I look to the 50mm versions, the olympic bars, a decent one would cost 150€ which is quite a lot. But the weights are the same pricing so I'll think about it.

Also, there is one listed as black oxid - ball bearing (up to 450 kg) and one chrome, needle roller bearing (up to 400kg)

They're of different steel, I guess that makes the difference, but do you know something about the bearing and the coating?

There's also an explanation to the max load for different exercises, eg bench press up to 450kg and squat up to 200kg but I don't know how that would translate to the standart bar. It probably doesn't allow for a lot of progress lol


The rack looks like this: ms-s004-1.jpg

I have a chinip "bar" (you have to stick it onto the doorframe) that allows shoulder width (or closer) chins and pulls.

I wouldn't want to do weighted chins with it however ;)

Isn't it possible to do chins from the barbell on the rack? I can remember someone saying that.


We do have some TRX straps (or whatever) that come down from the ceiling, if that's what you mean. My dad uses them but I could never figure out what to do with them.

For that matter, we also posses a 16kg kettlebell I could use.


Btw, I'd mainly do squats, bench press, deadlifts, sitting military press. I haven't touched techniques like clean, snatch etc nor do I plan on dropping the weight.


As for chalk, I haven't thought about that. I don't think it's that important (yet)

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You should really go with an Olympic barbell and plates. Eventually you will outstrip what your standard bar is capable of and will be stuck buying your bar and plates all over again and have wasted the money initially. You don't need either bearing type unless you are planning on doing a lot of Oly lifts like the snatch and c&j. A bushing bar would be much cheaper and serve the purpose just as well. If you get a black oxide bar you'll need to oil it periodically to keep it from rusting, but the knurl will be better. Chrome or zinc plating makes them more corrosion resistant but at the cost of a loss of traction.


I was just suggesting the TRX as a chin-up bar alternative. I like mine for doing suspended pushups as an assistance lift to bench press.


Chalk here is like $2 for a block. Get some and see what you've been missing.

My training log




Hudson Valley Strongman presents Lift for Autism (USS), April 16th Contest report


Hudson Valley Strongman presents Lift for Autism (NAS), April 18th Contest report

Eighth Annual Vis Vires Outdoor Strongman Competition (Unsanctioned), August 1st Contest report


"What's the difference between an injury that you train around and an injury that you train through?"

"A trip to the hospital"

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definitely go for the proper bar (and make sure any extra plates fit it...) also with cleans etc you don't have to drop it, i do cleans and snatches and always lower each rep down, even with the rubber plates we've got at my gym, i'll also second not using the pussy pad :) makes you more unstable, something you don't want when squatting heavy, if you can't find a good high bar position after some concerted effort then go low bar, it's my preference

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I just picked up some rubber floor mats for our garage gym.  I have bumper plates, but if you have steel plates, you don't have to worry about damaging your floor if you accidently drop them.  They are horse stall mats that I got at TSC (Tractor Supply Company), not sure if you have something like that over there.  They were on sale for $40 each and are rubber 4' x 6' x 3/4" thick.

A good bar is a must.

No tampon (neckpad).

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When i built mine i started with a good set of oly plates and a bar and expanded from there buying it a piece at a time.  You can get a really good home gym set up for under a 1K total.  I so far expanded out and bought k bells, a full rogue squat rack, another oly bar, rings, rubber bands, racks to put the oly plates on.  Next i want to get a rowing machine and maybe some medicine balls.  I also have a tire to flip and a couple of sledghammers

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On 10/24/2013 at 2:17 PM, jesuschristmoose said:

Definitely go for an olympic bar and weights, they are worth the investment. Also, a great option for flooring is barn mats, they work amazing for flooring and are pretty cheap.

see them here


Couldn't agree more! My simple home gym setup with a bar, good plates, and floor mats is all I need to workout. The only thing I would like to add is a squat rack, preferably with a pull-up bar attached. Let me know if you have any suggestions.

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