11 Best Home Gyms for Bodybuilding – With & Without Weights – Reviewed
Tytax M2 Home Gym
Our Top Pick
Tytax T1 x Home Gym
If you’re your a bodybuilder like I am, you’ve probably realized that a most public gyms just won't cut it for you anymore.
You’re tired of waiting for equipment, sick of the daily commute, and if you’re told once more that you can't deadlift that heavy, you might just lose it.
I was there once before, and like you I hopped on the web looking for equipment so that I could turn my garage into the gym of my dreams.
Unfortunately, things are never that easy.
As soon as I started searching I realized that getting together all the equipment needed for a bodybuilding home gym that’s up to my standards was gonna be harder than I thought.
Between picking the right equipment, the right accessories, the weights, bar, plates etc.
Waiting for everything to get to my house, setting up and the outrageous shipping fees, it looked as though it was gonna take a lot of money.. and I am note made of money. Far from it actually.
So I started doing my research
My Bodybuilding Home Gym Research
I started to do my research on just how much I was going to spend on a home gym and I started comparing different products and different strategies of how I could go about building my home gym that was going to allow for my style of bodybuilding.
After literally weeks of researching forums, products, prices, and reading literally a ton of blog post I finally narrowed down my search to 11 different home gyms that are suitable for bodybuilding.
Down below you are going to see the results of my research and hopefully this will be the be-all end-all guide to finding the perfect bodybuilding home gym.
First I have listed the 8 best bodybuilding home gyms with free weights. By this I hope you know what I mean but if you don't, this means the first 8 gyms are ones that work with weight plates.
Home gyms that are designed for the bodybuilding training style typically need.. or should require weight plates.
These are more hardcore, built to last, free compound movement style all in one home gyms.
And while these first 7 are the most hardcore best of the bunch home gyms for bodybuilding there was also 3 all in one home gyms that from my research and by my personal opinion will cut it for bodybuilding.
These are listed down below.
These are the home gyms that are without free weights.
They are less hardcore, but in my opinion unless you are training for Mr. Olympia, these will still cut it and are an excellent choice because they take up less room and are slightly cheaper on your budget.
Our Top Picks
Tytax T1 X Home Gym
Editors Choice - Best Overall Option For Bodybuilding
- Best Option For True Bodybuilders
- Literally The Best Built Home Gym I Have EVER Seen. The BMW of the Home Gyms
- This Is the One That I Personally Own - going on 2 years now
- Highly Rated & Raved About in the Bodybuilding Forums
- You Won't Need Anything More. 450+ fu**...freaking exercises
Marcy Home Gym
Most Affordable Bodybuilding Home Gym
- Best Budget Option For Bodybuilders
- Most Cost Effective Bang For Buck Option
- Built Way Better than the Price Suggest
- Again, Highly Rated & Raved About in the Bodybuilding Forums
- Provides You with all the fundamentals and enough to suit most
What Makes Bodybuilding Home Gyms Different?
There are a few things that make bodybuilding oriented home gyms different than the rest. This article is aimed towards beginners, here are some basics that you need to know if you are looking for a bodybuilding home gym.
Comes with Free Weights
While machines are great for beginners or injuries, when it comes to building muscle and bodybuilding, no one beats free weights.
I will probably offend some guys saying this. Yeah yeah machines are great for pumping the muscle but hey gimme a break. Free weights are where it's at if you want to kickstart serious muscle growth and build the body.
They require a bit of a learning period, but if you’re bodybuilder thinking about getting your own gym literally for bodybuilding..
I really hope you are way past that and get down to my list below to see the best options. If you are beginner, this is okay, and keep reading.
What are the benefits of free weighted home gyms?
Versatility for one, and compound heavy movements for two.
With plates, a bar and a rack you can train every single muscle in your body. Bench, Squat, Deadlift, Overhead press, the list goes on.
They also work for olympic lifts if that's your thing.
It doesn't end there though, the main benefit of working out with free weights is that you can do compound lifts with them. These are lifts that recruit several muscle groups at once, and are the key to growth.
Since these don’t isolate the muscle being worked, it is a lot easier to apply the principles of progressive overload and force your muscle to create adaptations AKA GROWTH!
Last but not least, as the name implies, the weights are “free” since they are not guided by anything but yourself.
Allow for Hundreds of Exercises
When someone is setting up for a home gym I often see the recommendation of just getting a squat rack, a power rack, a weight bench, a weight bar, and some plates.
While this barebones setup will get the job done and cost a little less, it will greatly limit your exercise selection and the amount of accessory work you can do. It is well known that variation is key for growth so this trade off is less than optimal.
This is where all in one home gyms shine. Well the ones that I have listed below. Most others do not.
Not only do they offer all the awesome benefits of a free weight setup like we described above, but they also come with hundreds of attachments and accessories so that you can switch up your training and keep forcing your body to grow.
You don’t have to settle for just compounds.
And when you are bodybuilding this is not ideal. You need more. You need contraction, you need pump, you need to be able to burn the muscle after a break down.
Compounds are great for a lot of things, but are a bit lacking when it comes to targeting smaller muscles like biceps, triceps and calves and are not good at all at fixing imbalances that may develop when training.
Finally, there’s also boredom; As the saying goes, variety is the spice of life. While we all love training, after a couple months of the same exercises it can get a bit dull.
Also important to note, with these gyms below you are able to switch things up, and trust me, speaking from personal experience, if you want to continue to grow you absolutely have to switch up the exercises or you will plateau.
Built for Abuse
These home gyms might be a bit on the pricier side, but don’t worry, there’s a reason for that.
And when comparatively speaking, from my research, when you start piecing everything together that you need for a body building home gym it is actually cheaper.
Whether you go for a beginner home gym or an advanced gym with leg press station, or a multi-station home gym, you are likely to spend quite less overall.
These gyms below are built like tanks. Like I said above, I have owned my T1-X for going on 2 years now and literally the paint is still intact.
It is built beyond what you can imagine.
These are built to last. This is what sold me completely on these kinds of setups. They are meant to be an investment for life.
You pay for it once and you’ll have a lifetime gym membership with the best home gym setup you could ask for.
Made with heavy duty materials, these will never break on you, no matter how hard you treat them. These are meant for bodybuilders. Ronnie Coleman couldn't break these.
Never again will you have to lower the weight on the bar because of weird grinding sounds, afraid of bending or even breaking your equipment. With these you’ll be able to pack on the pounds at your leisure, confident that your gear will take it like a champ.
In the end it all circles back to the same thing, these will not hold you back. Ever.
You can train as hard and as long as you want. Only your hard work will determine how far you get.
Best Home Gyms for Bodybuilding
Okay now listen, I have down weeks of research.. Weeks. This is no joke stuff and this post took me hours to draft up so enjoy.
Listed below are the top rated, most bang for your buck, highly reviewed bodybuilding home gyms.
1. Tytax T1 x Home Gym – Best Overall Home Gym For Bodybuilders
450+ Exercises. Everything you need. built to last.
Shipped in a bullet proof box...Nuff Said
TYTAX T1-X Home Gym Video Overview
TYTAX T1-X Home Gym Review
Without a doubt, one, if not THE BEST purchase I’ve made in my life. The Tytax T1-X is so jam packed with gadgets, gear, and equipment that I could probably write a whole article about this machine alone, but for your sake I’ll try to be brief.
Just by looking at it, you can tell that this is not just a simple power rack. In fact, it comes with four different training stations in the front and back.
Two of which can be used either individually or together for special exercises.
By having the stations spread out like that, it allows up to three people to train at once on the T1-X. So you can invite your friends over and have a blast working out together, without ever leaving the comfort of your own home.
Its a guarantee that you’ll never outgrow this beast of a machine, and you’ll definitely never get bored, since it allows for up to 300+ unique exercises, and that number goes up to 450+ exercises if you count variations.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been working out for years now, training myself as well as others full time, and I can’t even think of three hundred exercises! Let alone four hundred and fifty!!
Even better, Tytax knows this is the case, so they’ve compiled an exercise database with a dedicated video for each of the four hundred and fifty exercises to help you learn the right way to do them and get the most bang for your buck for their product.
What’s more, as the T1 comes packed with dozens of different accessories and attachments, they included a much needed accessory rack with every T1 so that you can keep the clutter to a minimum. All for the wonderful price of 0 dollars.
Yes you read that right! The accessory rack is free! Included with every T1!
Now, I could go through each of the stations and fawn over all the different things you can do with them, but we’d be here until next month, so I’ll go through them quick.
The front station includes the bench, the smith machine and the front pulleys. Let's start with everyone's favourite, the bench.
- Seat and Backrest are adjustable for multiple angles
- Can be adjusted for incline and decline bench press
- Wheel Bearings allow the bench to slide forwards and back.
- Moving bench can be used for rowing, hack squats, leg presses, dips and more
- Multiple Add ons can be used to perform preacher curls, lat pulldowns, ab crunches etc
- Can be used as a rack for free weights
Some of these features work in tandem with the smith machine, so let's move on to that one.
Smith Machine Features:
- Can work as a weight stack for multiple exercises like Leg Press, Shoulder press, Lat pulldowns, and more.
- Has dozens of sockets to use the machine with different attachments
- Handles don't intersect with your body to ensure your safety if you drop the weight.
- Lack of intersection with the body allows for better stretch at the bottom of the rep
- Handles can be connected to act as a bar if needed for conventional bench press, close grip press, etc.
- Includes counterbalance system to use weights in the opposite direction of gravity.
- Comes with a weight reducer to work smaller muscle groups like triceps and biceps.
- Beginners can perform assisted pull ups to help them get started and figure out the number of pull-ups they should be able to do, over time, you'll be able to hit 20 pulls ups, or even 50 pull-ups a day.
Alright now let's talk about the front pulley system that works along the bench and smith machine. It includes an upper gate, a lower gate and a middle pulley:
Front Pulleys Features:
- Can be stored when not in use.
- Different angled pulleys allow for incline, decline and neutral chest flyes and other pulley based exercises like glute kickbacks - the kickbacks work like magic for those who want to tone up their mom butt into a bubble butt or a jiggly bum.
- Middle Pulley can also be used for tricep pushdowns, lat pulldowns (in case you don't have a lat pulldown machine already) etc.
Okay, now that we’re done with the features on the front side of the T1. Let's move on to the back station. Relax, even though it’s called the back station, it's not just for working on your upper or lower lats.
Now remember, the stations on the either side work independently of each other, so they can be used simultaneously
Back Station Features:
- Station B is a lever that can be used for leg raises, leg curls, abs for building core strength, and more and can work with the bench for more comfortable seating.
- Section C is a butterfly that you can use for chest presses, and rear delt rows and other exercises.
- Pulley system can also be used with the back station.
- Can be used as a rack for free weights.
By now you should be pretty much sold on the T1. When I say its a bodybuilding home gym, I literally mean you’ll have all the amenities of a commercial gym LA Vegas gym in your home.
The most common thing I see people complain about when working out at home is that since you’re alone, in case of an accident, there’s no people to bail you out.
But Tytax of course thought of that too, so here are the tech & safety features of the T1-X.
Tech & Safety Features:
- Safety Pins on both racks to keep the bar from crushing you if you fail a lift.
- Steel cables for dumbbells so that you can rack them on handles and start the exercise from an optimal position.
- Bench Folds into the machine to save space
- Can attach roman chair and dip bar
- Dimensions 169 in x 118 in x89 in height, 640kg
Finally, I feel like I should mention that Tytax will ship this product to anywhere in the world, and they will do so in a bulletproof box.
Yes, bulletproof. You can even workout in a warzone! But being serious it means your machine will never be damaged during shipping.
2. Tytax M2 Home Gym
Best Budget Minded Tytax Bodybuilding Home Gym
- 400+ exercises
Tytax M2 Home Gym Review
Tytax once again bringing a top notch product. This time a bit more budget friendly and smaller, but don't think for a second that its any worse for it.
This time with two training stations instead of three, the M2 still manages to bring over 400+ exercises to the table, even with a smaller form factor and lower price.
All of them are listed on their website, with tutorial videos and a useful filter for better browsing.
You will also get the accessory rack completely free, like mentioned above.
In fact, the M2 was designed specifically to bring a full gym experience and the ability to perform as a full body workout machine to those who don’t have the space for one of their bigger options.
They’ve certainly achieved it, as this piece of equipment can be used completely in rooms as small as 157 inches in length by 79 inches width and only requires 85 inches in height!
If you live in an apartment or small space this could be the perfect bodybuilding apartment home gym. And for those with a low-ceiling basement gym, the height on this machine is just perfect.
Once again, thanks to the multiple training stations, the M2 allows for two people to work out at the same time without getting in each other's way, even working different muscle groups!
The M2’s front station also features a bench, so let's get down to business and see what it's all about.
Bench Station Features:
- Seat and Backrest are adjustable for multiple angles
- Can be adjusted for incline and decline bench press
- Wheel bearings make it so that you can slide the bench closer or further to the machine and even use it for rowing, leg press (in case you don't have a leg press machine) and more.
- Bench orientation can be switched to face the machine or away from it.
- Has plenty of accessories for different exercises, like preacher curls, leg curls, ab crunches and more
- Handles can be joined to simulate a bench press bar.
One of the best features of the M2 front station is the arms, these can move around in various angles, to act as weight stacks, handles and more. Lets dig into their features
Front Arms Features:
- Handles don't intersect with your body for safety and better range of motion.
- Includes “bumpers” that can limit range of motion of the arm for safety or completely block the arm to perform other type of exercises
- Arms can be connected to be used together or with cables
When it comes to pulleys, the M2 comes equipped with four of them, one in the back and three in the front. Of those, two are at the top and one at the bottom.
These are integral to the workings of most exercises and are often used in conjunction with the arms and bench to hit different muscles, but there are a few standout features that I felt should be mentioned.
Pulley System Features:
- Rotating pulley accessory with 360º range of motion is included, it can be attached to any of the pulleys.
- Upper and lower gate attachments allow you to extend and change the angle of the pulley for exercises like chest flyes.
- Can be accessed from the back station as well and used on both lower and upper positions.
- Counterbalance system can be used to perform assisted reps (negative weight) or simply have them travel opposite to gravity like when performing a lat pulldown.
Of course, the M2 has some other features, like a multi directional pull up bar, that don’t really fit within any of those categories, but if I wanted to list every single thing these all-in-one gyms have, we’d be here for days!
Like always, my main priority when advising people on home gym equipment is to stay safe, so let's talk tech & safety for a minute.
Tech & Safety Features:
- Dumbbell Steel Cables so that you don't have to lift them from the ground and can rack them safely after
- Arms have a bar holder for compound lifts
- 157 inches length by 79 inches width and 85 inches in height
- 750 lbs
What if you don’t have the budget for a bigger machine, but you know you’ll eventually want more equipment and options for working out? Then worry not, Tytax has got you covered!
They offer up to ten different add ons for the M2, so in a way, it can grow with you! As you get stronger and more experienced you can purchase different add ons to keep your workouts interesting and your muscles growing!
3. Tytax M1
Budget Tytax Home Gym
- Budget Friendly all-in-one home gym
Tytax M1 - Budget Tytax Home Gym Review
The Tytax M1 is the smaller cousin of the M2 I reviewed above, slightly smaller and lighter, it has almost all of the things that make the M2 great, but lacks the training station in the back and a few others.
So if you know you’re training by yourself, you don’t mind having one less pulley, you liked the M2 but wanted to spend a bit less money, you might just be able to have your cake and eat it too by getting the M1!
Don't worry though it still offers over four hundred different exercises AND ten different addons to bring even more variety to your workouts.
Alright so by now you must be wandering, What makes the M1 and the M2 different?
Not very many few things to be honest, for starters it's smaller, it can fit in a room that's as small as 150 in in length, 79 inches width and 81 inches tall! Not only that, but it's also lighter, at 665 pounds to the M2’s 725 pounds.
That means you’ll get to save a bit on shipping too!
The main difference however, comes with the pulleys, it doesn’t have a back pulley, which doesn’t hinder functionality by much, but means only one person can use it at once.
In fact, according to tytax’s guide, the only exercise the M2 can do, that the M1 can’t, is butterfly pulleys with the upper gate.
All in all, not a bad option for someone in the right circumstances.
4. Marcy Gym
Cheapest Home Gym Suitable For Bodybuilding
- Smith machine allows you to do presses and smith machine squats safely without a spotter.
- If you don’t want to use the smith machine, there are movable safety catches to place the bar and do compounds.
- Pulley System allows for arm presses, cable crossovers, rows and more.
- Calisthenics or bodyweight training can be performed thanks to the multi grip pull up bar and dip bar with adjustable handles.
- Comes with a useful manual that details the principles of muscle building and how to apply them with the SM-4033
- The included bench can be moved around and its angle can be adjusted from -27º to 76º so that you can hit different muscles
- Includes a detachable preacher curl pad, triceps rope, short bar, two cable handles and a landmine attachment.
Marcy SM-4033 - Smith Machine Review
What do you get when you combine a power rack, a smith machine and a power tower? The Marcy SM-4033...a great, cheap option for anyone looking to do away with commutes and annoying pop music and instead continue their fitness journey at home.
It might not look as fancy as the Marcy MWM 988 or the 990, but don't let looks deceive you.
This is a great device for anyone looking to train at home, its fairly compact, so you could fit it in a garage or extra room, and offers many different options for different styles of workout.
Compounds, cables, calisthenics. The SM-4033 can adapt to the needs of most gym goers without any trouble, but as always, I like to do a deep dive into what makes this machine great so here go the best features of the SM-4033.
Looks pretty damn good doesn't it? Doesn't matter how you wanna train, this piece of equipment can do it all, so let's move on to the technical side of things and see if you can actually fit this puppy in your home.
- Dimensions when the cage is assembled: 83.5” x 68.8” x 86.2”
- Dimensions when the bench is assembled: 63” x 26.4” x 53.9”
- Maximum Smith Machine weight: 300 pounds
- Maximum Safety Catches Weight: 300 pounds
- Maximum User weight: 300 pounds.
As you can see, it can handle 300 pounds in most forms, which means 99% of us will be fine when using it, but if you’re one of the 1%, the strongest of the bunch (the likes of Ed Coan, for instance) you might consider going for our next option.
5. Marcy Pro SM-4903
- Smith machine, Power Rack and Pulley System packed into one
- Lower price point
- Can hold up to 600 pounds!!
- Safety catches and Smith machine stoppers ensure safety when doing smith machine deadlifts or other workouts
- 2000 pound tensile strength cable!
- Double overhead pulley system allows for cable crossovers.
- Includes Pull Up bar and Dip bar
The SM-4903 is quite similar to our previous entry, but there are some key differences. I’d say that this is the better option for someone more committed to traditional weight training; Compound lifts and heavy weights.
It is slightly less versatile, than the SM-4033, but that doesn't mean it's any worse. At a lower price point, it might even be better! Depending on what style of training you’re looking for, because this one can hold up to 600 pounds.
Yes you read that right! Double the amount of the SM-4033, So if you’re a beast that's squatting 315 for reps, this one's for you. It trades a bit of the fanciness and versatility of our previous entry in exchange for raw strength and power for those who need it.
Made out of powder coated steel, you can be certain that no matter what you throw at it, this all in one home gym will take it with ease and remain with you for a long, long time.
- Powder Coated Steel tube construction
- Cage assembled dimensions: 86"L x 73"W x 85"H
- Bench assembled dimensions: 48"L x 27"W x 49"H
6. BodySolid FreeWeight Leverage Gym
- Extremely safe thanks to controlled range of motion
- Can perform over 40 different exercises for different muscle groups
- Comes with a bar and a squat attachment
- Each Station can be adjusted to fit your body right and be comfortable.
- Includes a bench
BodySolid FreeWeight Leverage Gym
Our fifth entry might look a bit different from what you’re used to seeing in home gym equipment, but don't worry! If anything, it goes to shows BodySolid’s commitment to innovation and staying at the forefront of advances in fitness.
In this case, they created something completely unique, with the objective in mind of giving people an intense workout where they can max out their strength and power, without putting their bodies at risk at any moment.
They’ve achieved this by creating a machine that allows you to go through 40 different exercises, without ever needing a spotter.
Thanks to their specially designed and machined devices, you never put yourself at risk of injury by dropping the bar or bad form, and can be on your way to gains without worry!
I know what you’re thinking, “This sounds great, but what if something breaks? Will my gym become useless?”
Don't worry! Not only is their stuff made with premium powdered coated steel, but it is also covered 100% by their lifetime guarantee!
Yes! Everything, cables, bearing, leather, the whole thing! If it breaks, BodySolid will replace it!
- 3"x 3" 10 and 11 gauge steel mainframe with all-4-side welded construction
- Commercial grade ball bearings for a frictionless performance.
- Safety pins at every station to ensure you’re not crushed by weights
- Powder coated finish to avoid scratches and blemishes
- Dimensions without bench 104"L x 107"W x 83"H
- Bench Dimensions 72"L x 28"W x 32"H
7. BodySolid Corner Leverage Gym
- Press Arm can be locked at the top to act as a pull up or chin up bar.
- Press Arm can also be used for Squats, shrugs and more.
- High and Low pulley come with multiple attachments to perform different exercises like biceps curls, lateral raises and more.
- The bench angle can be adjusted to work out in a inclined, neutral or declined position.
- Covered by the BodySolid lifetime warranty.
BodySolid Corner Leverage Gym Review
We’ve all been there, you see a piece of equipment online that sounds tailor made for you, the right attachments, the right movements, the right price, there's only one thing wrong. The Size.
It doesn't matter how versatile or powerful a home gym may be. If you can't fit it in your house, you’ll be stuck with commercial gyms for the time being.
BodySolid goes around this and bring fitness to everyone’s home by creating an all in one home gym with one thing in mind, saving space. This way, even those of us living in smaller houses or apartments can say goodbye to gym fees once and for all.
Honestly, they did a wonderful job, they managed to cram four different stations into a small form factor of only 95"L 67"W x 83"H while always staying true to their “safety first” approach to weight training.
What are these four stations you ask? a Lat pulldown/High pulley, a Press/Squat arm, a low pulley and a bench; There’s a lot to say about these, so let's not waste any more time and get right to their best features.
- AirCraft Grade Cables
- Nylon Pulleys.
- 600 pound capacity.
- Rounded metal tubing.
- 95"L 67"W x 83"H
8. Marcy SM-4008 Smith Machine
- Smith machine and Safety pins ensure you can do compounds safely
- Includes a pull up bar for bodyweight training or calisthenics
- Chest press doesn't need a weight stack, uses standard plates
- Upper pulleys allow for cable crossovers
- Bench position can be adjusted
- Has a “Leg Developer” for leg curls and extensions
- Lower Price point.
Marcy SM-4008 Smith Machine
Last but not least, we have the Marcy SM-4008. I would say it's the most basic form of the previous Marcy gyms, great for anyone serious about training, but not willing or able to spend as much on a home gym.
It still includes the classic smith machine, the safety pins for free weight training and a few uses of a pulley system, plus a chest press and a bench. Let’s do a deep dive into its best features.
- Maximum user weight: 300 pounds
- Maximum weight bar capacity: 300 pounds
- Maximum Leg developer capacity: 100 pounds
- Maximum Lat pulldown and crossover capacity: 200 pounds
- Assembled Cage Dimensions is 65”L x 79.25”W x 84.5”H
- Assembled Bench Dimensions is 68.25”L x 26”W x 45.5”H
Best All in 1 Home Gyms Without Free Weights
While free weights are awesome, they also have some drawbacks, like storage, compatibility issues and that if you want to switch between weights quickly (In a superset for example) it can be a pain.
It makes sense that some of us would like to forego free weights all together. That’s why I’ve also compiled a list of the best all in one home gyms without the use of free weights.
1. BowFlex Revolution
Best Overall Bodybuilding Home Gym Without Free Weights
- SpiraFlex Technology provides resistance independent of gravity and without inertia
- Arms move independently with up to 170 degrees of rotation and 10 different positions.
- .Leg Press offers up to 300 pounds of resistance, with upgrades available.
- Bench can be adjusted to press in different positions.
BowFlex Revolution Review
With a small form factor but a surprisingly large selection of exercises, the BowFlex Revolution is the definitive answer for anyone looking to simplify their home gym set up, without missing out on the benefits of a larger device.
Just one purchase, one package, one set up and you’re good to go. Train arms, legs, chest, back, shoulders. You name it, the revolution can do it, without having to move heavy plates or equipment around.
- 10 year warranty
- Minimum Work out area: 10’L by 7’ W by 6’1 H
- Maximum capacity: 300 pounds
- Extra 300 pound upgrade available.
2. Bowflex Home Gym Series
Base Model the Pr1000 Best Features:
- offers over 25 different exercises.
- Up to 200 pounds of resistance.
- Cardio training
- Multi Angled pulleys
- Adjustable Bench All the way to their top model, the Xtreme SE, with over 70 exercises and up to 410 pounds of resistance.
Top Model, the Xtreme 2SE Best Features:
- Over 70 exercises
- Up to 410 pounds of resistance
- Includes 7 free workout regimens
- Includes ab training strap, lat bar and squat bar.
- Adjustable bench and multi angled pulleys
Bowflex Home Gym Series Review
Over the years BowFlex has released multiple instances of their Home Gym Series, with five different models targeting different folk who might be interested in their fitness and personal health.
No matter if you’re just getting started or you’re competing in shows, BowFlex has a gym for you.
Marcy 150 lb Multifunctional Home Gym - Best for Beginners
- 150 weight stack
- Adjustable bench
- Removable curl pad
- Leg developer
- Lat pulldown machine
Marcy 150 lb Multifunctional Home Gym Review
If you’re just getting started, a regular home gym might feel a bit intimidating. Learning compound movements and the intricacies of muscle building by yourself is quite a challenge.
That’s why for beginners I always suggest going with something like the Marcy 150 lb home gym. It has enough load to be challenging but not enough to hurt you, and by doing the exercises on machines, you’ll get a feel for them without the risk of bad form and injury.
Top Home Gym Brands
Tytax was started over 25 years ago with one thing in mind, creating a world where people take care of their bodies and thanks to that can improve their health quality of life, especially for those of advanced age.
To achieve this, they’ve constantly expanded and developed more and more solutions for bringing fitness to everyone, and that is why they now can boast to ship their equipment anywhere in the world.
Tytax is so invested into quality and durability that the boxes they use for shipping are bulletproof! If the boxes are so durable, imagine what's inside!
A subsidiary of the IMPEX brand, Marcy is one of the most well known brands in the home gym space. As part of a very select group of brands, they take on fitness in a different way to reach everyone no matter what.
As you’ve seen from the products we’ve showcased they cater to everyone, from beginners to experts, so that all of us can say goodbye to long commutes and gym payments once and for all.
Founded in 1989 with the mission of selling value priced, high quality fitness equipment, they have come a long way.
Their name is synonymous with quality, and it shows. They there the first fitness brand to introduce lifetime warranty in 1996 and still offer it today.
The company stands by their “built for life” motto and are even ranked as an A+ by the better business bureau.
Most well known for their innovative way of creating resistance without weight stacks by using the tensile strength of their trademark bows. Bowflex brings over 30 years of experience in the home gym space to help you reach your fitness goals as easily as possible.
They pride themselves on their diverse crew, not just bodybuilders and personal trainers, newbies, pros, athletes, everyone gets a say in their design and it shows in how their products appeal to pros and beginners alike.
BodyBuilding Buyers Guide
How To Buy the Best Home Gym
Straight going to say, if you buy a gym that is not in my list, you are not making a smart move. If you choose to do so though, please make sure to do your research, like tons of research to make sure you buy the right gym and pieces of equipment so you are not kicking yourself later.
Here are a few things you must be on the lookout for.
Pretty basic I know, but you’d be surprised at how many beginning bodybuilders assume that all home gyms come with free weights, olympic bars, accessories, and more. It doesn’t help that the less respectable vendors out there usually don’t make it very clear to begin with.
They prey on those who don’t pay attention and once you pay for the base model and complain you didn’t get your weights, they’ll charge you more to get them.
That’s it, just be careful that you’re getting what you think you are. Especially for Bodybuilders, since compounds are an essential part of most workout routines, which brings me to my next point.
Compounds are a must for any serious bodybuilder. They are exercises you can load up heavy and progress consistently by applying the principles of progressive overload.
Like I mentioned above, they engage your stabilizers and accessory muscles as well, causing widespread hypertrophy.
Even if it is not in the same way you would perform them in a regular gym setting, you need to have some way of performing the basic four, bench press, shoulder press, squats and deadlifts - more so for those who love to squat and deadlift or squat and bench on the same day.
Maybe using a smith machine bar, dumbbells or machine presses, just make sure you have some way of doing it.
Even if you have the most advanced home gym available, it's pointless if it doesn’t challenge you, so weight should be one of your primary concerns when buying home workout equipment.
Yes, there are a few ways to get around this like supersets and increased reps, but even then there will come a point where your progress will stop because you can't keep piling on the pounds.
You should also be wary of how much weight comes included with the gym.
I’ve seen countless cases of people having to go way over their budget because their gym didn’t have any weights included and they didn't realize it when they bought it.
Some people disregard pulleys as a gimmick or second hand compared to compounds and other heavier lifts. These people are wrong. Pulleys are extremely versatile add ons to any gym that will add variety to your training and help with isolation.
Especially with 360 degree pulley systems, there are a few muscles that can't be worked with them, lat pulldowns, curls, chest flyes, cable crunches, you name it.
Yes, compounds should be the main exercises on your regimen, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't make space for isolation. Shoring up weaknesses and fixing imbalances is very hard to do with a barbell, but fairly simple with a pulley system.
Speaking of variety, let's move onto our next item.
Exercise selection is one of the most important aspects of training, in fact, many training systems use what is called concurrent periodization, which basically consists of not only utilizing heavy loads, but also changing exercises often to avoid complacency and to stimulate the muscle further.
This is why you should pay attention to how many exercises the home gym you’re planning to buy offers, and how useful those are.
You should look for something that allows compounds like we said above, but also a high degree of isolation work for the different muscle groups.
Of course, not only will a limited selection of exercises impact your workout regimen, it may also lead to feelings of boredom and loss of motivation.
Its no fun to do the same four exercises for the rest of your life. So look for something that can keep things interesting.
Personally, I like cycling through my regimen. Say working my shoulders after chest day, working the arms after chest day, or combining the most of my chest and leg workouts to keep me going.
The final and perhaps most vital item in our list of must haves, especially if you’re not buying from trustworthy vendors like the ones we listed, is warranty.
Let’s face it, accidents happen, things break. Maybe during shipping, maybe during a workout. Simple wear and tear can often lead to breaks that render a whole machine useless, so having a long, expansive warranty is a great way to guarantee peace of mind.
That’s why I’ve always gone for known brands like BodySolid or Tytax, which often offer extended or lifetime warranties without any extra cost.
FAQ Most Bodybuilders Have about Home Gyms
Listed below are some of the most commonly asked questions by beginning bodybuilders when searching for the best home gym
How Much Should I Be Willing To Spend On A Good Home Gym That Will Last?
Like most things in life, there isn't one definitive answer. It depends on what it is you want out of a home gym. Bodybuilding home gyms are going to straight up just be more expensive. The style of training that we do, this is something that you should already be prepared for.
If you want to be the best of the best, maybe compete even, and have a home gym that will carry you through that journey, you’re probably looking at something upwards of $5000.
If you’re just a gym aficionado that wants to stop paying commercial gyms for something that gets the job done, then most gyms under $3000 will suffice.
If you’re just starting out and want the most basic training, around $1500 is a good number, though keep in mind you might want to upgrade later and this is something that can get costly because that 1500 you spent can end up being wasted. You may wish you just spent the extra.
How Much Weight Will I Need?
This is a tough one, I’ve seen plenty of folk over spending on tons of plates that they end up not using, and they not only waste money, but also space. They end up with gear cluttering their gyms and making a mess.
When people ask me how much weight they should buy, I tell them to think about how much weight they would like to lift in a year. Not how much you lift, but how much you would like to.
Be realistic, if you’re deadlifting 200 pounds, you won’t be hitting 405 just like that, but maybe 315 is a decent goal. Now, using that weight as a starting point, think about plate distribution.
You don't want to use all your plates when you max out, it would be a pain, so maybe get up to that number in big 45 lb and 35lb plates and then get a whole set of smaller (25 lb., 10 lb., 5 lb., 2.5 lb) ones to be able to progress and load up other stuff as well.
Where Should I Buy It From?
As always, I can’t help but recommend Amazon as the best place to buy weights and home gyms, especially if you’re going outside of our list (Even though you really shouldn’t).
Amazon is a huge company that always has the buyers back, so in case of any troubles, having them at your side is always a plus. They make returns and issues an extremely easy process.
How can I keep from destroying my floors?
There’s two ways you can go about saving your floors, floor mats and bumper plates. Depending on your situation, I might suggest both.
Floor mats are a given, not only they’ll protect your floors, but also your plates if you’re using metal ones. A pro tip is to look for horse stable mats instead of gym mats, they are exactly the same but much more reasonably priced.
Bumper plates are a bit controversial. if you’re in an apartment complex you might want to go for these since they are less noisy, the tradeoff is that they’re more expensive and you can fit fewer on the bar.
My Last thoughts & Recommendations
My main recommendation is to pick one and go for it. With so many options it can feel overwhelming and you end up doing nothing because you’re scared of making a mistake.
If you pick one from our list you’ll be safe, and the sooner you get one, the sooner you’ll be working out, getting healthier and closer to your goals.
Just find something that suits your needs and get going, there’s no point to doing all the research in the world if you end up with nothing.
Hi there! I'm Ben, main author and chief editor at Fitlifefanatics.com. I have been obsessed with Strength Training and Fitness for 16 years now.
My passion for living a happy fit lifestyle is what made me realize that fitness is what I wanted for my future.
I went on to earn my Masters in Sports Training & Biomechanics.
My passion for Strength training & fitness and my love of helping others is what made me start Fitlifefanatics.
Here, myself, and a team of specialist aim to provide the most accurate, and actionable information possible in hopes to help foster the fitness community forward.
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