The Best Home Gyms 2 Belfast
The Best Home Gyms 2
Designed for: This gym is designed for a regular exerciser. He is in decent shape, but wants to add muscle and improve his sports performance.
Designed by: FitCorp. Visit fitcorp.co.uk or call 078 8765 6849.
With a £4,000 budget you might have to skip the wall-mounted HDTVs and monogrammed towels, but there’s no need to compromise on the quality of kit. Your priorities should be buying a good range of weights and at least one good cardio machine. ‘A lot of your cash is going to go on cardio gear, but it’s better to have a good-quality rowing machine, for example, than settle for something substandard,’ says FitCorp director David Gaule.
Although it’s more expensive than a normal barbell, Gaule’s spec includes an Olympic bar. ‘They’re sturdy when you’re lifting heavy weights and the sleeves on the ends mean the bar won’t shift awkwardly,’ he explains. Once you’ve invested in some heavy-duty kit, you can add variety to your workout with some relatively cheap extras. The FitCorp line-up includes a triceps rope, lat pull-down bar and V-handle, which will increase the amount of moves you can do on the Smith machine. ‘If I had another grand,’ says Gaule, ‘I’d probably include a dual pulley cable trainer. It’s quite an advanced bit of kit, but very functional.’
Gaule also advises on being aware of non-equipment costs, such as flooring, which for a set-up like this would cost around £250. As with all home gym design services, delivery and installation will also set you back a bit, but on the plus side FitCorp will probably be able to get the gear at discounted prices.
1 Lonsdale Maize Bag, Speed Bag and Floor To Ceiling Ball, £170
‘This is the kind of specialised boxing kit you wouldn’t see in an ordinary gym. At just under £200 for the lot, it’s pretty good value for money and it’ll add variety to your workout.’ sugarrays.co.uk
2 Lonsdale Heavy Bag, £55
‘When gyms have heavy bags, they tend to go for leather ones because they’ll take a pounding day in, day out. Get a leather one if you’re really keen, but this basic Lonsdale bag is a lot cheaper.’ sugarrays.co.uk
3 Medicine and gym balls, £53
‘A medicine ball is excellent for functional exercises such as woodchops, and the gym ball is good for working your core and for dumb-bell exercises.’ sugarrays.co.uk
4 Sugar Ray's Gym Timer, £50
‘Essential if you’re going to do boxing rounds and a nice gizmo to use if you’re going to do any kind of interval training.’ sugarrays.co.uk
5 Bodysolid Power Rack Smith Machine, £949
‘This model allows natural upper-and lower-body movements for maximum muscle interaction. Price-wise and for the amount of exercises you can do, there’s nothing as good as this. The alternative is to buy separate cables, a bench and a squat rack, which will be more expensive.’ fitness-superstore.co.uk
6 Jordan Olympic Bar, £62
‘An Olympic bar is essential if you want to lift heavy weights. With the plates on, it’s at the proper height for compound lifts. Also, the balance tends not to be quite right on barbells, whereas an Olympic bar is much more stable.’ jordanfreeweights.com
7 Powertec Adjustable Olympic Bench/Rack, £649
‘This bench works with an Olympic bar and lets you bench at varying angles. It also has lat pull-down attachments and an optional arm curl machine.’ fitness-superstore.co.uk
8 Jordan Kettlebells, £120
‘I’ve designed this gym for someone who’s quite experienced. They aren’t the easiest things to use, but they’re progressive and good for core strength and varying your training. This set includes 12kg, 16kg, 20kg and 24kg kettlebells.’ jordanfreeweights.com
9 Concept 2 Type D Indoor Rower, £899
‘If I could only have one bit of cardio kit, this would be it. You can do sprint training and it works your upper and lower body. Doing 500m interval training on this will make you super-fit.’ fitness-superstore.co.uk
10 V-Fit Spinner Cycle, £300
‘This is the next best thing to the spinning bikes that you find in commercial gyms. At £300, it’s brilliant value for money.’ fitness-superstore.co.uk
11 Sugar Ray's Skipping Ropes, Bag Gloves and Wraps, £30
‘Skipping’s a good warm-up exercise that there frequently isn't enough room to do in a normal gym. Even if you are in a regular gym, having your own gloves means you don’t have to put on someone else’s sweaty pair.’ sugarrays.co.uk
12 Bowflex Adjustable Dumb-bells, £399
‘This is a neat space-saving solution for people who don’t want a huge dumb-bell rack, but also don’t want to mess around with collars. The Bowflex set looks classy, too.’ fitness-superstore.co.uk
Total cost: £3,736