Home Gym or Gym Membership?
A common question weight training enthusiasts ask at some point is whether or not it makes sense to continue renewing a gym membership or whether to invest in weight training equipment for a home gym. There is no straightforward answer as what works for one does not for the other. By simply outlining the pros and cons of each expense, however, you will hopefully be able to make up your own mind.
Advantages of buying equipment for a Home Gym
Having a home gym or workout room within your home is becoming increasingly popular because it brings along several benefits:
- Weight training equipment: There is a wide range available and there is no need to go for the more complicated machines to get started. A few sets of weights and accessories (such as a weight bench, training gloves and possibly an exercise ball) are a great start to a home weight training program. For advice on the sort of equipment, you could have in your home gym visit Garage Gym Planner.
- Convenience: You can work out in your home gym whenever you please, without restriction and within the comfort of your own domain. Use your weight training equipment for as long as you please, play the kind of music that gets you in the mood to push your limit and enjoy the privacy if that is what you prefer. Above all, there is no need to travel - Simply change and off you go
- Hygiene: Exercising at home means you do not have to rely on others to take hygiene into account. Your equipment is used by only the people in your household and there is much less danger of contracting some kind of disease you could do without
- Motivation: There are legions of reasons why people get discouraged from following through their weight training program at the gym and having the equipment to work out within the comfort of your own home takes away a number of those reasons.
- Expense: Home gyms can be pretty cheap if you are comfortable working with free weights and basic accessories. If you are serious about weight training equipment and are in it for the long haul, it is probably more economical buying a multi-gym or more advanced equipment in general. Although quite an expense to get into, you can save money in the long term by avoiding expensive gym memberships.
Disadvantages of a Home Gym
- Motivation: Some people simply work better in a training venue that is away from home. It can simply the change that makes a difference or the fact that effort has already been made to get to a gym, so might as well follow through and do your workout properly and completely. This is a personal thing - Which situation least hampers your motivation?
- Social aspect: For some, there is a social aspect to weight training or perform better when training in pairs or in groups.
- Everyday life: Getting away from home and other normal situations in everyday life can be rewarding in that it allows you to switch off and focus on your weight training program.
- Distractions: Being at home it is easy to get distracted by the simplest of things and living in a household with kids will make that worse
Advantages of exercising at the gym
Now that we have covered the (dis)advantages of investing in a home gym, let us take a look at what pays and what does not about renewing a gym membership and training with weights away from home.
- The range of weight training equipment: There is more equipment to work with, to cover a larger range of exercises and training a wider selection of specific muscles and muscle groups
- Supervision: All gyms require certified fitness trainers to supervise and safety check exercise execution but also to provide advice on how to use weight training equipment properly and avoid injury.
Having that expertise available to you if you are a beginner to intermediate weight training enthusiast can be worth the expense of a gym membership
- Amenities: Besides having the usual changing rooms and showers, a lot of gyms also offer amenities such as a sauna, and an indoor pool with a Jacuzzi pool as well. It can be an added benefit if you like to relax that way after exercising
- Motivation: If you have paid a gym membership for a long term it can be a strong incentive to keep going with your weight training program. Would it not be a waste otherwise?
- Expense: If you are simply exercising to lose weight and shape up but not make exercise a regular part of your life, it probably makes more sense to get a gym membership rather than purchase weight training equipment that will end up collecting dust in your garage
Disadvantages of Exercising at the Gym
- Choice: Although gyms may have a wide range of equipment, it is pretty useless if the gym is overcrowded and your weight training program is interrupted by constant waiting for machines to become available for use
- Gym rats: Every gym has them - People with poor hygiene in the changing rooms, hogging weight training equipment at busy times, constantly looking for conversation
- Expense: If you take exercise seriously, then renewing a membership can be expensive and with the knowledge that basic weight training equipment is not too expensive, it might be worth investing in that instead
So how do you figure out what the best solution is for you?
Go through these pros and cons and figure out what type of person you are, what your preferences are and where your priorities lie.
Consumer Affairs compares different fitness equipment, features that come with each and also who should consider buying home exercise equipment.
Jim Roose's home fitness purchasing guide - the content on this website covers everything you could ever imagine about creating your very own garage gym.
If you quote information from this page in your work, then the reference for this page is:
- MACKENZIE, B. (2004) Home Gym or Gym Membership? [WWW] Available from: https://www.brianmac.co.uk/homeorgym.htm [Accessed
The following Sports Coach pages provide additional information on this topic: