Best Home Gym Setups (Expert Layout & Planning Advice)

Working out at home is an excellent way to get in shape.

Home gyms can be a luxury or a necessity depending on your budget, and you will experience numerous benefits from installing one in your home. 

The best home gym setups are the ones that get used. It's as simple as that.

If a gym isn't in a convenient place, or if it doesn't have all the right equipment, it won't get any use.

This article will show you some of the best setups for every type of gym you can create at home. 

1. Small Room Home Gym 

The biggest obstacle to maintaining a home gym is space, so you'll have to do a bit of planning if you're lacking room.

In the image below, this person has all the home gym equipment they need to work every muscle group.

They also happen to have my absolute favorite rowing machine, the Concept2 Model D to get a cardio workout in.

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The image below shows, in my opinion, excellent use of space even though there isn't much to spare. This home gym owner left enough space to get in and out of the power rack with ease. 

They also appear to be using a Rogue R-3 power rack, which is an excellent option for home gyms. 

small room home gym with power rack and rowing machine

2. Bedroom Gym 

If you don't have a separate room you can give up, all you need is a simple corner of a room. 

In a bedroom, you'll want to make sure you can pack away your equipment after use to keep it from looking cluttered. 

In this gym space, the owner put a small squat rack and bench in the corner of the room. The squat rack also has a pull up bar at the top with some overhead room. 

They were even able to fit a compact exercise bike, which is perfect for a quick cardio session.

The other thing I really like about this gym space is the storage options for barbells and weight plates.

They even bought some foam tiles to put under their heavy equipment. This will protect the flooring and add a layer of sound and vibration absorbing material. 

It keeps everything off the floor when not in use, so this room can go back to its day job when no one is working out; whatever it may be.

small home gym in the corner of the room with a squat rack and exercise bike

3. Apartment Gym 

The key to building an effective small apartment gym is to invest in a few pieces of equipment that you'll use often and correctly. 

The owner of this apartment built this gym during the pandemic as they could not use their gym membership. 

You can see they went all out and took over a portion of their living room. They moved their couch and TV towards the front of the room and removed their dining table to make a small gym space.

They invested in high-quality equipment such as a Rogue Monster Squat Stand 2.0 where they can work on compound lifts such as squats, deadlifts, and bench press.

You can also see a pair of Powerblock dumbbells on a stand, which is perfect for working on isolation exercises. We're huge fans of these dumbbells!

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To complete this home gym, the owner has a full set of REP Fitness weight plates that are nicely tucked on a weight plate storage rack. 

apartment home gym with rogue squat rack, powerblock dumbbells, and rep fitness weight plates

4. Garage Gym

Have a little extra room to work with? No problem! If you can spare some room in your garage, it's a perfect place to build a gym. Check out our guide on how to turn your garage into an amazing gym.

To get started, you only need a few essential pieces of equipment. We recommend the following items regardless of your goals: 

  • Olympic Barbell 
  • Squat Rack 
  • Free Weights (Dumbbells Or Kettlebells) 
  • Weight Bench 

These pieces of equipment will enable you to maximize the number of different workouts you can perform. 

As you can see in the picture below, this owner used some of the space in their garage to build an effective workout space. 

You can see this owner opted for a power rack with lat pulldown, which greatly increases the number of exercises they can do in a training session.

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They also have a high-quality adjustable bench for both flat and incline exercises. This allows you to hit different parts of each muscle group. 

They almost have an entire gym worth of equipment in a small corner of their garage.

small garage gym with a power rack, lat pulldown, and weight plates

5. Power Lifting/Weightlifting Home Gym 

If you're a powerlifter, you'll want to focus on the big three - the bench press, squat, and deadlift.

There's a very good reason why these are the big three – they work more muscles than any other exercises, and they're also the most versatile. 

For these, you'll need to make sure you have a power rack, bench, weight plates, and a barbell.

This homeowner built a powerlifting gym with these items in mind. They opted for a heavy-duty power rack and a full set of weight plates.

They also have quite a few accessories like a plyobox, weightlifting belt, resistance bands, and lifting chalk. 

You can see they didn't forget about dumbbells. They have a pair of Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbells in the corner for working on accessory movements.

powerlifting home gym setup with power rack, bench, and weight plates

6. Rooftop Home Gym 

Building a home gym on your roof is an excellent idea for several reasons.

Your workouts will be more convenient because you won't have to drive to the gym, and you'll also get to enjoy the natural sunlight and fresh air.[1] 

Rooftop gyms are a great way to get a workout in when the weather makes it impossible for you to want to stay inside. 

This rooftop gym has a fantastic setup for multiple users to get in a workout. They have two Rogue Monster Lite Power Racks, barbells, and covered storage.

They even went one step further and added small rain coverings over the power racks so you can use them during inclement weather. 

rooftop gym with two power racks and covered storage

7. Backyard Home Gym 

If you have access to an outdoor space, consider buying a shed and turning it into your own personal gym. Jump over to our complete guide on the best sheds for home gyms.

This is an affordable option with plenty of room for lots of useful gym equipment. The best part is that you won't have to worry about distractions from others while working out. 

This homeowner built an outdoor home gym with many different types of equipment. They seem to focus on calisthenics and other CrossFit-style workouts. 

They incorporate a punching bag, a climbing rope, monkey bars, pull up bars, and resistance bands. 

Best Cheap Home Gym Setup

Why Setup A Home Gym? 

If you don't have a lot of time to go to the gym, don't have a lot of money to spend on a personal trainer, or are just not that good at going to the gym, a home gym setup is a perfect option for you. 

Some of our favorite reasons to set up a home gym are: 

Time Efficiency 

A home gym is a great way to save time.

Instead of driving to a gym, finding a parking spot, changing, exercising, showering, changing again, and then driving home, you can skip all that and head straight to your designated space. 

Cost Efficiency 

Building a home gym is one of the best ways to save money.

Instead of joining a gym and paying exorbitant monthly fees, you can buy the equipment you need to exercise at home.

It does require an initial upfront investment, but over time this will pale in comparison to typical gym fees. 

Related Article - Working Out At Home Vs Gym


Home gyms are much more private than working out in public gyms.

You don't have to share equipment with anyone, and you don't have to worry about people watching you. If you're body-conscious, a home gym is a great place to get fit. 


A home gym gives you the ability to work out whenever the mood strikes you.

When you go to a gym, you may have to wait for equipment, and you're subject to the whims of the gym's opening hours. 


You can perform your workouts whenever and wherever you want to, which is excellent because it means you don't have to wait until you have a free hour to head to the gym.

You can do your workout right after you get home from work or school, while you're watching TV, or straight before you go to bed. 

yoga mat with dumbbells, a jump rope, and shoes

Important Features & Equipment For A Home Gym Set Up 

Let's look at the most essential features you should pay attention to when setting up your home gym. 

Find The Right Space 

No matter the size of your home, you can still set up a home gym.  All you need is a small area in your house you can dedicate to your fitness goals.

Ideally, it should be a space that you can close off, like a room or a corner. It'essential to make sure that your space is comfortable, inviting, and, most importantly, free from distraction. 

You'll also need a space that is well ventilated with sufficient lighting and makes you feel comfortable. 

Read Also - Home Gym Size Guide

Stock The Home Gym 

When you are setting up your home gym, you should always start with the basics. You can begin with gym essentials such as a pull-up bar and some resistance bands.

Then you can add a weight bench, some dumbbells, and an exercise ball.  

Once you have all of that, you can start adding more advanced equipment such as treadmills or ellipticals. 

Have Enough Storage 

The key to a great home gym is making it easy to get to everything you need, which means creating a good storage system. 

When your gym is set up, you should have all your equipment in a logical order and ideally within arm's reach.

Having all the accessible means you can change from one exercise to the next as quickly as possible. 

Also Check Out - Home Gym Storage Guide

Design Your Setup 

The first step in designing your home gym is to figure out precisely what kind of gym you're going to build and what you intend to do in it. 

If you're an avid yoga fan or a wannabe bodybuilder, the setup and layout of your room will be very different. 

Spend some time working out what it is you enjoy before kitting out your room with the essentials.  

If you're working on a budget, focus on inexpensive gym equipment that is versatile, such as dumbbells, kettlebells, and a basic weight bench. 

Common Home Gym Setup Questions

Does a home gym add value to a house? 

home gym is a great way to add value to your home.[2] If you're interested in making your house sell faster, adding a gym is a great way to do that, as it can make your house more attractive to prospective buyers.

Just remember that whether a gym is attractive or not will very much depend on who is buying your home. 

What is a good size room for a home gym? 

If you have space, a good size room for a home gym is about 14 feet by 15 feet.

That will give you plenty of room for a rack of dumbbells, a bench, and a few other pieces of equipment. If you're short on space, you can always make do with less equipment. 

What is the best floor for a home gym? 

The best floor for a home gym should be shock absorbing, be able to take a lot of abuse, and be durable. The floor should also be easy to clean. 

Your home gym should be built on a solid foundation, whether that's a concrete slab or a wooden floor. A solid foundation will ensure that the equipment is stable and that everything is level, which makes it easier to work out.

What is the best color for a home gym? 

It depends on the type of training you're doing. If you're working with heavy weights, you'll want a darker color because the color will help hide scratches and scuffs from collisions.

If you're doing cardio or yoga, then a lighter color will help you feel more open and spacious. 


Working out at home is a great way to stay in shape. It can save you money, and it's a great way to meet new people who share your interests.

Ready to start your own home gym? Check out some of our other articles to get started.




Last Updated on July 10, 2023

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Andrew White

Andrew White is the co-founder of Garage Gym Pro. As an expert fitness professional (gym building nerd) with over 10 years of industry experience, he enjoys writing about everything there is to do with modern fitness & the newest market innovations for garage gyms. When he isn’t testing out products for his readers, he’s usually out surfing or playing basketball.