How to Choose the Best Exercise Equipment for You

best workout equipment for home

So you are thinking about purchasing fitness equipment to train at home. It is not easy, I know. There are so many types of products out there. If you browse Amazon, there are millions of stuff you can choose from. If you are new to workout, it is hard to decide which one is the best workout equipment for you.

Should I buy a home gym? Or free weights? Or purchase a cardio machine such as a treadmill or a stationary bike?

For a newbie, it is hard to decide.

That is why I write this guide to help the average men to find the right type of exercise equipment for their workout programs. After reading this guide, I’m sure you will be able to decide what is the best home fitness equipment for you.

But before jumping into the details, I would like to congratulate for you because you have made the first step towards a healthier and fitter life. It is a fact that regular exercising is vital to a healthy lifestyle. And if you have something to work out with at home you can train whenever you want. You do not need to go to the gym wasting time and money.

Well-chosen exercise tools for home will provide you years of training. I can say you that for sure because I have been working out at home for about four years having the same results, or even better ones, as if I went to a gym.

Ok, now let’s focus on the various fitness and exercise equipment you can get to train at home.

What types of exercise equipment are there?

home exercise fitness equipment

To pick the right type of equipment, you have to decide how you want to work out and what your aims are.

There are two basic sorts of exercises: aerobic (cardio) and strength training (lifting weights).

Cardio Exercise Equipment to Burn Fat

cardio equipment

Do you want to lose weight, so you need something to burn calories? Do you wish to enhance the capacity of your lung and strengthen your heart? Would you like to increase the metabolism of you body naturally? Do you need an alternative to running?

Then, you need something that allows you to do cardiovascular training (aerobic exercises.) You should choose from trainers like:

  • Exercise bikes or recumbent bikes
  • Rowing machines
  • Treadmills
  • Elliptical trainers
  • Stair steppers or tread climbers
  • Cross trainers
  • Pedal exercisers

Of course there are a few more, but these are the best gym equipment for cardio.

Now let’s get into details of the mentioned fitness equipment.

1. Treadmills - Enjoy the Benefits of Running Whenever You Want

treadmill for running

There are two kinds of treadmills, the manual and the powered.

The manual treadmills are simple and more affordable than powered ones. The belt on the manual treadmill moves as you walk on it. So, there is not an engine that drives the belt, but you do it with the pressure of your feet.

The problem with manual treadmills is that they provide limited usage. They are not suitable for running, just walking. If you exercise regularly, you are going to outgrow it sooner or later as your endurance develops.

Powered treadmills are very popular these days, and there are hundreds of models out there with different functions.

Why are they better than the manual ones? Firstly, because there is a motor that moves the belt, so you have to run or walk at a constant speed. By setting it, you can choose from various programs to run faster or slower. And most of the models lets you change the angle of the working area making your workout more challenging as if you run uphill.

And there are so many other functions they provide such as the display panel that shows you all sort of information about your training such as calories burned, the speed, distance, etc.

Top 3 Best Selling Treadmills

SaleBestseller No. 1
XTERRA Fitness TR150 Folding Treadmill Black
265 Reviews
XTERRA Fitness TR150 Folding Treadmill Black
  • Large 16" x 50" walking/running surface
  • Large 5 inch LCD display is easy to read and keeps you updated on speed, incline, time, distance, calories, and Pulse
Bestseller No. 2
NordicTrack T 6.5 S Treadmill
796 Reviews
NordicTrack T 6.5 S Treadmill
  • Dimension: 73x35.75x67.5 inch
Bestseller No. 3
Merax L510C Easy Assembly Folding Electric Treadmill Motorized Running Machine
34 Reviews
Merax L510C Easy Assembly Folding Electric Treadmill Motorized Running Machine
  • 【0.8-10 KM/H Speed levels & P1-P12 Programs】With the quick touch of a button or use the easy-access handlebar controls you can adjust speed from 0.8-10KM/H to manipulate workout intensity and reach your goals with pre-set 12 programs
  • 【5" LED Display & 16" Wide Tread Belt】5" LED display screen tracking progress in speed, distance, heart RATE and calories burned and 16" wide running tread belt give you best workout experience. With Integrated Tablet Holder and Dual Cupholders are featured on both sides of the LED display

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2. Elliptical Trainers 

Another typical cardio equipment that sculptures several muscle groups at once are the elliptical trainers. These machines have adjustable resistance as well. The better models can be used in reverse mode, and their display panel shows you detailed information about your workout. The high-quality machines provide smooth and natural motion, and they are quiet.

Watch the video below to learn more about elliptical trainers.

Top 3 Elliptical Trainers

SaleBestseller No. 1
Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer
3,874 Reviews
Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer
  • PORTABLE, QUIET AND EFFICIENT CARDIO: This mini strider is compact and lightweight, making it easy to use and transport to any home or office space. It's quiet and unintrusive, too.
  • ADJUSTABLE TENSION WITH MONITOR: Vary the intensity of your workout by turning the adjustable dial while you stride. See your stats while exercising with the display monitor.
SaleBestseller No. 3
Stamina Inmotion Compact Strider
558 Reviews

3. Rowing Machines - The Total Body Cardio

Well, I have to say that after running I think rowing machine is the best fitness machine for cardio. I love it, but unfortunately, I have not been able to buy a professional one such as the Concept 2.

Rowing machines are perfect since during the use almost all the muscles are engaged and that is why it boosts the heart rate and burns fat efficiently. The better models provide smooth and steady motion. You feel as if you row in a boat, especially if you buy a water rower.

I have tried both cheaper, and more expensive models and the difference is huge between them.

Best Bu​​​​​y Rowers

Bestseller No. 1
Concept2 Model D with PM5 Performance Monitor Indoor Rower Rowing Machine Gray
2,008 Reviews
Concept2 Model D with PM5 Performance Monitor Indoor Rower Rowing Machine Gray
  • Low impact workout that engages all major muscle groups; work legs, core and arms with a smooth, high calorie-burning motion
  • Track your progress with real-time reliable data; the Performance Monitor 5 (included) self-calibrates for comparable results; connect wirelessly to heart rate belts and apps (not included)
SaleBestseller No. 2
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine with LCD Monitor by SF-RW5515
1,071 Reviews
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine with LCD Monitor by SF-RW5515
  • DIGITAL MONITOR - The large LCD console displays time, count, calories, total count, Scan. The convenient scan mode displays your progress to assist you in tracking all your fitness goals
  • FOAM GRIP HANDLEBARS - Help prevent calluses with the improved Sunny Health & Fitness Handle Bars. Non-Slip foam grip handlebars offer comfort while enduring those long rides. Slide rail inseam: 44 inch
SaleBestseller No. 3
Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 12 Adjustable Resistance Rowing Machine Rower w/ Digital Monitor
777 Reviews
Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 12 Adjustable Resistance Rowing Machine Rower w/ Digital Monitor
  • 12 levels of adjustable resistance
  • Comfortable, smooth running seat

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4. Exercise Bikes - For Low Impact Cardio

Bikes are great to strengthen and tone your leg muscles. And of course, to improve your cardiovascular system. They can be used while you are in the living room watching TV.

There are a few types of exercise bikes out there. You can choose from traditional ones, recumbent bikes, and pedal trainers. What is the difference between them?

Ordinary stationary bikes are almost the same as a bike, but you can increase or decrease the resistance, and they show you details about your workout such as the distance, burnt calories, etc.

The recumbent bike is better for those who have lower back or spine problems since they put less stress on these areas. Simply, you pedal in a supine position.

exercise bike comparison

And the simplest equipment is the pedal trainer that you can use if you have problems with sitting on a bike. Also, it is ideal for those who sit too much every day since it can be put under the table.

Which is the best? If you have no joints or other problems, a traditional quality bike is the best option.

Best Buy Indoor Bikes

Bestseller No. 1
Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike with Resistance ME-709
2,653 Reviews
Marcy Recumbent Exercise Bike with Resistance ME-709
  • STEP-THROUGH DESIGN - Featuring heavy-duty construction 14-gauge steel tubing with a powder coated finish, the step-through design allows maximum mobility during training for quick mounting and dismounting that is created easier for the knees and back.
  • EIGHT RESISTANCE LEVELS - This stationary bike uses a magnetic resistance mechanism with 8 levels of resistance. The tension knobs control the difficulty to simulate riding on different terrains and customize your workout according to fitness level!
SaleBestseller No. 2
Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike with Bluetooth App Tracking Option
5,844 Reviews
SaleBestseller No. 3
XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike, Silver
387 Reviews
XTERRA Fitness FB150 Folding Exercise Bike, Silver
  • Solid x-frame design folds to just 16.75" x 18" of floor space when not in use
  • Large anatomically designed seat and multi-grip padded handlebars are designed for long lasting comfort and support

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5. Stair Steppers

If you use the stairs instead of the elevator, you know how tiring it can be, and that is what a stair steppers imitate. They perfect for shaping your legs.

They come with adjustable resistance so you can do your workouts harder as your endurance and strength develop. The better models come with unique hydraulic systems that provide smooth motion.

And if you want the real stair climb feeling you can purchase a tread climber which is the combination of a treadmill and a stair stepper.

Watch the video to learn more about stair steppers and its benefits.

Best step exercise equipment

SaleBestseller No. 1
Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper with Resistance Bands
1,080 Reviews
Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper with Resistance Bands
  • TRACK YOUR FITNESS: LCD monitor measures the steps, time, total and calories, making your exercise more reasonable and effective
  • TOTAL BODY: Equipped with removable training bands, this high-quality stepper tightens over 20 different core muscles and using low-impact aerobic exercise to help tone your chest, back, and shoulders
SaleBestseller No. 2
Sunny Health & Fitness NO. 059 Twist Stepper Step Machine w/Handle Bar and LCD Monitor
990 Reviews
Sunny Health & Fitness NO. 059 Twist Stepper Step Machine w/Handle Bar and LCD Monitor
  • LCD MONITOR: Monitor displays your Time, Calories, Count, and Scan, you will be able to see your results to keep you motivated and on pace.
  • BALANCE: This stepper has Handle Bars to help keep you balanced while you step. Great for beginners who are new to the stepping world.
Bestseller No. 3
Sunny Health & Fitness NO. 045 Twister Stepper
1,689 Reviews
Sunny Health & Fitness NO. 045 Twister Stepper
  • TWIST ACTION: Twist action helps you tone thighs and buttocks, while achieving a challenging cardiovascular workout; work deep muscles in hard-to-reach places without putting stress on joints.
  • DURABILITY: Heavy-duty steel construction provides years of reliable use; oversized, slip-resistant foot plates keep you firmly planted during workout.

Strength Training Equipment to Build Muscle

weight training equipment

1. Home Gym Machines

Home gyms are maybe the most popular pieces of home exercise equipment since they are very versatile. The better models such as the Bowflex Revolution or the Marcy Diamond Elite home gyms come with all the features to have total body strength training at home.

Since there are a wide variety of models, I have already written a detailed guide about how to buy a home gym here.

Home gyms are maybe better for beginners since while you do the exercises, the motion is controlled by the machine. That is good until you get used to training with weights. However, I believe free weights are also vital for proper strength training.

home workout

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2. Workout Benches, Barbells, Dumbbells, and Weights

If you cannot afford to buy a professional home gym, then free weights can be a better choice for you.

Dumbbells are versatile and heavy duty exercise equipment since there are a large number of exercises you can do with them for all the muscles at home. You can choose from various sizes and if you can afford you can buy a set of adjustable dumbbells that combine multiple dumbbells into one.

A barbell with weight is another powerful tool to do compound exercises such as deadlift, presses, curls, etc. but to get the most of it, for example, to do bench press or squats, you will need a sturdy adjustable weight bench or a squat rack.

Adjustable weight benches are perfect for chest training since you can increase and decrease the angle of the board hitting your pectoralis muscles from different angles. And, of course, you can use it for several other exercises.

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3. Power Rack - Lift Weight Without Spotter Safely

If you have a barbell and weights, a squat rack is the piece of equipment you consider to buy. The squat is one of the most beneficial exercises that has an effect on the entire body, but you can use the squat rack for many other exercises.

For example, for deadlift which is another powerful compound exercise, or for shoulder presses, or with a simple bench you can use it for bench presses.

PowerLine PPR200X

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4. Abs Workout Equipment

One of the biggest dreams of most of us is to get six pack abs. And there are many types of workout equipment out there that you can use to strengthen your abs and to get rid of the belly fat. I think the best two tools are the adjustable sit up bench and the ab wheel. Which is the best for you? Read the following post.

Recommended: The best 8 Abdominal Equipment

5. Calisthenics Equipment for Bodyweight Training


Let me finish this the strength training equipment section with equipment that requires your bodyweight. If you have read other posts on this site, you may have discovered that I combine bodyweight training with lifting weights. And it works for me extraordinarily well seeing my strength, endurance, and muscle mass. Bodyweight workouts or calisthenics has many benefits.

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Now you can decide what is the best equipment for you depending on your aims. If your primary goal is to lose fat than buy a cardio machine if you want to put on muscle, then get a strength training equipment. However, to get superb results, getting both is the best option (in case you can afford).

But be careful! Avoid buying low-quality and ultra cheap pieces of equipment that broke after few usage or do not work smoothly. Always check the customer reviews and the length of the warranty. If an elliptical trainer comes with a 30-day guarantee, I’m sure it is not the model we want to buy.

Pick a little bit more expensive products with a long warranty and, at least, 4-star reviews. A well-working equipment is going to make your home workouts enjoyable and efficient for long years.

In case you have questions, feel free to ask in the comment section below.

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Last update on 2019-02-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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