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Strength Training Buying Guide

Strength training includes both home gyms and free weights and is a vital part of any workout routine.

 

Home gym systems and free weights (including dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells and resistance bands) provide a quality strength training workout in the comfort of your own home. Benefits include: improved muscle tone, better bone density and increased metabolism. Make sure you weigh your options and choose your equipment based on your requirements for increasing your overall body strength.

How to Choose

Free Weights vs. Home Gyms

Free Weights
Free weights include dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells and resistance bands. They are effective since you have to use your own balance to support the weights which can lead to better overall strength and increased calorie burn. They are inexpensive and ideal to use at home where space is often limited. Using free weights may increase some risks though, as they may be lifted improperly, and they can be dropped and cause injury to yourself or your floors.


Home Gyms
Home gym machines are great for beginners. The machine keeps the weights on a fixed path so you are more likely to use good form and the restricted movements can be easier. Your chances of injury are lessened as the weights are supported by the machine, and if you are doing heavier lifting you do not need a spotter. They are designed for specific exercises so you can have an easier time getting started with your strength training. They are more expensive than free weights, and will take up more space in your home.

 

Price

Your strength training program does not have to be limited if you do not have a lot to spend on equipment. If you are on a budget, then you can start your strength training with some dumbbells, resistance bands and a weight bench. This will get you started with minimum cost. If you have more money to invest in your strength training regime then you may want to consider a home gym system. You can get a quality home gym for under $1000.

 

Space

When you are setting up an area in your home for your strength training, be certain to measure the space before you purchase a home gym or a bench and free weights. You want to make sure there is enough space to use the equipment effectively. When measuring your space, be sure to include width, height and length. A home gym will have a larger space footprint than a basic weight bench and free weights.

 

Weight Capacity

The important thing to remember when it comes to strength training is that you must give you your muscles more weight than they can handle - that's how muscles grow. Whether you are purchasing free weights or a home gym, consider buying multiple weights so that you can adapt your routine as your muscle strength builds.