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  1. #1
    Registered User gcourtois's Avatar
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    Question Home Gym Minimum Size ?

    Hey,

    I've been working out doing mainly weighted bodyweight exercices for the past 7 months. I've put on 6 kg of LBM and am satistfied of my physical/ performance changes. I am 5"11, now at 165 pounds for 10% body fat. However, I want to introduce some change and mix free weights with machines along with keeping some bodyweight exercises.

    I'am currently searching for a house to rent, in which I plan to have a home gym. I plan to keep this house for several years at least and so would like for the home gym to have all the space that is needed for equipment and for it to be comfortable to move around. I understand as far as free weights and bodyweights exercises go a 20 * 20 feet room would be comfortable enough.


    However, I am completely unfamiliar with machines. My question is, what machines would be most useful ? I have heard there is debate between freeweights vs machines but I ideally want the "best of both worlds". Hence, what machines should I plan for that can get the job done better than freeweights in certain cases? (Knowing my my main goal is mass and aesthetics rather than strength, although I understand both are related)

    Would be great if you could make a list of machines with this in mind :

    Why do these movements get their job done better than their freeweight counterpart considering my objectives? Any machines that isolate muscles in ways freeweights cannot, an important consideration for aesthetics?

    According to these lists, I'll plan for the right space.

    Thank you for your time : ),

    gcourtois
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  2. #2
    Registered User urbjhawk21's Avatar
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    All you really need is a power rack with a bench and 300 lb olympic set. I have my "home gym" in a room that is about 10 foot by 8 foot. All I have in it is a power rack with adjustible bench, elliptical machine, and a set of powerblock adjustible dumbbells. I can do everything I need with that.
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  3. #3
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Take a look at this thread: my small 6.5ft x 8ft gym area. I think that owasM, the original poster in that thread, has done a great job of outfitting his space with the essentials. He has:
    • A barbell
    • Olympic weight plates
    • A rack (though it would be safer if he had a power rack)
    • A bench
    • A pair of adjustable dumbbells

    He's managed to save some space by using a 5 ft bar.

    If you have the space, a 7 ft Olympic bar would be preferable. You'll need (at least) a foot and a half on each side of the bar so you'll need a minimum of 10 ft in that direction. I would think that 7 or 8 feet would be about right for the other dimension. So, a 8x10 room would be about right for a rack, bench, barbell, plates, and dumbbells (if you want them). The room would have to be dedicated for that purpose, however.

    If you want other equipment such as a GHD or lat/row machine, you'll have to budget more space.
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  4. #4
    Registered User gcourtois's Avatar
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    Good to see it can be done. However, I'll be able to get more space. My question revolves around planning for the amount of space for machines I'll actually need :

    I am not familiar with machines yet for I have been training at home using bodyweight and plan to continue home training in a new house, this time also using free weights and machines. Hence I am looking to estimate the space I'll be needing for any machines I might need on my road to building more mas

    This is why I am asking for a list of machines that are perfectly complementary to freeweights in the way that the freeweight "version" of it is not as efficient or does not exist, so to calculate the space I'll eventually need and hence rent the right housing space.

    All in all, wanting to know of these machines/a list of the most commonly found machines in bodybuilding gyms around the world so to calculate the space I'll eventually need and not overcalculate it.

    Thanks

    gcourtois
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  5. #5
    Registered User ruckuz27's Avatar
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    Whats your budget?
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  6. #6
    Registered User gcourtois's Avatar
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    Budget for the moment allows for the full free weight set and maybe one or two machines. But my budget will grow and I will be keeping this house as it grows, so I'd like to plan for potentially unlimited budget for machines(as long as it can significantly enhance workout) and hence the right space.
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  7. #7
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Pick up a copy of Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe. If you find that style of training to be compelling, all you'll need is a power rack, bench, bar, and plates. Dumbbells and a GHD can be useful for assistance exercises.

    If you plan on doing cardio inside, budget some space for whatever kind of cardio equipment you like - rowing machine, bike, elliptical, treadmill, ... You can even do cardio by doing kettlebell routines or barbell complexes.

    Another machine that's handy, though not strictly necessary is a lat/low row machine.
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  8. #8
    Registered User clockwork247's Avatar
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    you can try to make a DIY squat rack, and move the stuff in/out everytime you use them... all that stuff probably take like 2'x2' to store at most (foldable safety arm, and the stand is just 1 stand straight up), stand the bar up ect... that setup is the most space efficient IMO... you just have to set it up every time... which is about 5 min, think of it as a warm up lol.

    the only thing that wont' work is that you can't do pull up with them, you have to find some other way to do pullup.
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    Registered User miker84's Avatar
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    I think the topic title makes helping you a bit confusing. Are you more concerned with space or type of equipment to use? I think you figure out the space and then decide on equipment dependent on that or vice versa by deciding on equipment then you know how much space you need.

    I think a 10'x10' room is pretty standard sized room and that's what I have for my gym room. I have enough space to comfortably fit a power rack(no lat attachment), a stationary bike and adjustable dumbbells with stand. I could squeeze in lat attachment to the rack but it would be much tighter.

    Two start off points would be the thread with home gym pics which kind of gives you an idea of what you may strive for and also utilize some graph paper to plan a layout based on dimensions of equipment you select.
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  10. #10
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    If I had to pick 2 machines to go with a power rack, they would be a leg press and a lat machine.
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  11. #11
    Registered User SamWatson87's Avatar
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    My room is 12x12 and is more than enough for my needs. I have my homemade rack, FID bench, Two dumbbell racks, Some mirrors, A weight tree w/ 8 45's 2 25's 4 10's 2 5's and 2 2.5s. I can do dips in my rack with homemade dip bars I can do pull ups even w/ a very low "Ceiling" (no actual ceiling, just rafters). Any barbell exercise can be done in the rack besides OH press (ceiling) and overhead power cleans (ceiling).

    Bottom line, unless you really need cardio equipment or "fancy" selectorized machines, a 12x12 is more than enough.
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  12. #12
    Registered User owasM's Avatar
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    KB, the bar ive got in there is actualy a 7ft, the thick bar resting in the corner is 5ft
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  13. #13
    Registered User permabear86's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    If you have the space, a 7 ft Olympic bar would be preferable. You'll need (at least) a foot and a half on each side of the bar so you'll need a minimum of 10 ft in that direction.
    I just got my home gym all setup and I was wondering how much space I would need on each side of my 7ft barbell. Honestly I was surprised at how little extra space was necessary. I could probably get away with 6 inches on each side (8ft total) however I still think more space is always preferable. Extra space helps when removing the bar from the rack. You kind of have to maneuver the bar out of the rack.
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  14. #14
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by owasM View Post
    KB, the bar ive got in there is actualy a 7ft, the thick bar resting in the corner is 5ft
    That impresses me all the more.

    You've demonstrated that what permabear86 says is true, all you need is 6 inches of space on either side of the bar. I would guess that you're working your shoulders in interesting ways when loading and unloading plates.
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    Registered User owasM's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    That impresses me all the more.

    You've demonstrated that what permabear86 says is true, all you need is 6 inches of space on either side of the bar. I would guess that you're working your shoulders in interesting ways when loading and unloading plates.
    Haha yeah, thats the reason why i've chosen not to get 2x 110lb plates, my left shoulder already feels a little dodgey lol.
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    Originally Posted by gcourtois View Post
    Budget for the moment allows for the full free weight set and maybe one or two machines. But my budget will grow and I will be keeping this house as it grows, so I'd like to plan for potentially unlimited budget for machines(as long as it can significantly enhance workout) and hence the right space.
    I think you're kind of missing what people are trying to tell you. Rack, barbell and plates can work all of the same muscles that you'd need 8-15 machines to work. The rack, barbell and plates (and more plates) will work forever. If you're using machines and decide to try a different workout you may need to buy several new machines. Unless your workout room is the size of a stadium eventually you will run out of space. The rack, barbell and plates need the same amout of room year after year.
    Do I even lift?
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