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Bowflex
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Marcy
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How We Decided
  • 57 Models Considered
  • 39 Hours Spent
  • 2 Experts Interviewed
  • 228 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Shopping Guide for Best Home Gyms

    The best home gyms on the market offer durable, quality construction and useful features that promote fitness. 

    There are hundreds of home gyms available on the consumer market, so how do you tell which is the right one? With so many kinds of options, it can be tough to sort the wheat from the chaff.

    That's where we come in! At BestReviews, we want to help you pick the perfect home gym.

    We're dedicated to writing the most honest and unbiased reviews out there. We never accept free products from manufacturers. Instead, we buy products off of store shelves, test them in our labs, consult experts, and examine feedback from product owners.

    Our ultimate goal: to become your go-to source for trustworthy product recommendations whenever you’re faced with a buying decision.

    At the top of this page, you'll find our five favorite home gyms on the market. These highly rated products all qualify for our top-contender list.

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    Building a home gym to counter monthly gym bills can be a good idea. However, this will depend on how much you spend in buying the equipment versus the monthly costs of a gym.

    Considerations

    Considerations

    Features

    Each home gym unit has its own features to assist with a workout and satisfy specific needs. Examples of popular home gym features include a sliding seat rail for cardiovascular training, multi-use hand grips for added flexibility, stations that target specific areas of the body, stress-free setup, and various other storage and versatility options.

    Considerations

    Personal Goals and Needs

    When examining various products, ask yourself why you are interested in purchasing a home gym and what you will use it for. If you're looking to bulk up, a machine with free weights could be your best choice. If you're primary goal is to get your blood pumping, a product with a sliding seat bench is useful for cardiovascular activities such as rowing.

    Considerations

    Space

    For many consumers, space is an important consideration when buying a home gym. A compact unit that stores easily may be ideal for some, while others have a dedicated space in their home for a permanent gym. It is useful to measure your available space before purchasing in order to to determine the best fit.

    Considerations

    Price

    Although home gyms can be quite pricey, many fall within a range of just over $100 to around $1,000. Components such as state-of-the-art electronic equipment, stainless steel construction, and leather accents can increase the price of a unit. Certain features, such as built-in cardio rowing machines, can also drive up the price.

    Products we Considered

    • Marcy
      Diamond Elite Smith Cage
    • Bowflex
      PR1000
    • Best Fitness
      Body-Solid Sportsman
    • Powerline
      Short Assembly
    • Weider
      Power Tower

    Features

    Features

    Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System

    The Marcy Diamond Elite Smith system comes with smooth, linear bearings and quality leather accents. The machine sports a heavy-duty, tubular steel frame with a seven-degree slant designed to accommodate the natural movements of the upper and lower body. Options to hold both traditional and Olympic weight plates provide users with a well-rounded workout. Many consumers praise the smoothness and quality of the machine's linear bearings. A durable, powder coated finish makes this machine gleam, as many impressed consumers pointed out to us.

    Features

    Weider Power Tower

    The Weider Power Tower features both a pull-up and push-up station with padded hand grips. Many owners of various heights and sizes told us that the tower provides ample stability and room to successfully complete upper body workouts, although a few shorter customers found that the arm rests were too far apart and could not be adjusted closer. In general, customers appreciate the fact that, unlike most modern machines, the Weider Power Tower has a pull-up bar in the back, allowing more room for other types of exercises.

    EXPERT TIP

    When working out at home, do you want to focus on your upper body, lower body, or go for a full body workout? Choose an exercise equipment that addresses your priority functional areas.


    Staff  | BestReviews
    Features

    Powerline BSG10X Home Gym

    The Powerline BSG10X Home Gym offers a noteworthy, 160-pound weight stack and an 11-gauge mainframe construction for ultimate durability and function. Consumers interested in lifting more weight may purchase an extra 50-pound weight stack for this machine. The Powerline sports a chrome-plated, telescoping seat post for fast and efficient adjustments and body positioning. Several consumers told us that the added convenience of being able to quickly change from one exercise to the next was a selling point for them. Potential buyers should be sure to note that this machine's leg extensions and curls are sold separately. Some owners we talked to were frustrated by this, as they believed the product they were ordering came with these features.

    Features

    Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym

    The Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym features a natural arc similar to that of a free weight bench. Most consumers found the 150 pounds in stacked weight to be suitable for their needs; consumers who desired more resistance recommended purchasing additional free weights for the machine. Other notable Best Fitness features include a press arm/pec fly dual design and a high pulley with a wide-grip lat bar for bio-mechanically correct lat pull-downs. Some consumers noted that the arm bars seem a bit uneven, creating a lopsided feel, and that the plastic caps for the bars tend to fall off the sides. The heftier users we surveyed noted that the Best Fitness seems to be geared toward smaller individuals, citing difficulties and/or limitations with some of the arm exercises.

    Features

    Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym

    The Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym is a cardio and weight-oriented machine with anywhere from 5 to 210+ pounds of resistance and over 30 unique strength exercises. A few users we surveyed felt the machine's maximum weight was too low, but the majority found it to be suitable for their needs. Several users noted that ordering the Bowflex exercise book along with this machine provided an even wider range of beneficial home exercises and workout ideas.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Purchasing each piece of gym equipment new can rack up the bills. Instead, look around for all-in-one systems, such as in our matrix above, or for second hand individual pieces which cost lesser.

    Personal Goals and Needs

    Personal goals and needs

    Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym

    With up to 210 pounds of resistance and a Power Rod component, the Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym works the upper body and arms. The machine specifically targets the abs, chest, arms, shoulders, back, and lower body. Some customers who felt that the maximum weight was not quite enough suggested slowing down the arm exercises or mixing up a typical routine to achieve better results. This is a great machine for general upper body toning, but it is not ideal for those looking to add serious muscle bulk.

    Personal goals and needs

    Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym

    The Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym provides a total-body, muscle-toning workout with a 150-pound weight stack and cable lines tested to 2,200 pounds. This compact machine is particularly useful for arm press and pectoral fly exercises. The low pulley station assists with shrugs, curls, oblique bends, adduction and abduction, front and side deltoid raises, and seated, bent-over, and upright rows. Weights are located on the side, which is handy for changing plates around, but some owners noted that pulling weight off the top or bottom makes the machine lift up on one side. Several of the users we surveyed noted that this home gym is ideal for maintaining tone but not for building bulk.

    EXPERT TIP

    Know that just buying a home gym does not guarantee that you will be able to habitualise yourself to use it for its money’s worth. So don’t go overboard with purchasing the costliest home gym on the market till you have worked out a dependable routine for your workout.


    Staff  | BestReviews
    Personal goals and needs

    Powerline BSG10X Home Gym

    The Powerline BSG10X Home Gym comes with a 2,200-pound tension strength and a 160-pound weight stack. Many of the owners we surveyed remarked that this is not a machine for people who want to do serious lifting. It is optimal, however, for individuals who want to get in shape or maintain their current fitness level. In general, the Powerline is best suited to those who typically lift two to three times per week. This machine is useful for upright rows, bench presses, bent rows, seated rows, standing curls, leg extensions, military presses, leg curls, and other basic moves.

    Personal goals and needs

    Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System

    The Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System with Linear Bearings works well for those who are interested in both upper and lower body fitness. Unlike some machines that cater only to the upper body, this machine features a dual-action leg developer with multiple, over-sized roller pads and a row/curl bar for a variety of exercises. Most owners agree that the linear bearings make all maneuvers on this machine smooth and fluid. Several of the owners we surveyed said they use Olympic weight plates several times per week for a more intense workout.

    Personal goals and needs

    Weider Power Tower

    Simplicity is what sets the Weider Power Tower apart from many other home gyms. This machine offers a pull-up and push-up station as well as a dip station and an option for vertical knee raises. Although the machine works for people of all sizes, larger owners praised the machine's stability and sturdiness during a workout. A small number of customers had problems with the setup, noting that the gym would "rock" or become otherwise unstable during use.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    A home gym in the garage or other such areas can get pretty cold. To neutralise the temperature and so reduce the shock of cold to the heat your body builds up while exercising, get a few space heaters.

    Space

    Space

    Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym

    The Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym folds up for easy storage and generally suits people of most heights and sizes. At least one user noted that this home gym fits nicely into a compact space, such as a spare bedroom. Several owners praised the extensions on the sides for adding additional weights.

    Space

    Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym

    The Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym caters to rooms or homes with low ceilings and basement workout rooms with at least a 79-inch clearance. Several owners specifically chose this product because of its ability to fit into small spaces. Although some larger owners we surveyed found the unit to be a bit small for their body type, they appreciated the adjustable hand bar levels.

    EXPERT TIP

    Personalise your gym space by adding a music system, entertainment unit, lighting, or any other such accessories that will pump you up for exercising.


    Staff  | BestReviews
    Space

    Powerline BSG10X Home Gym

    The Powerline BSG10X Home Gym caters to users who prefer a compact machine with plenty of versatility. Several of the owners we surveyed told us that this home gym fits well in a designated workout space, such as a garage or basement. Owners who have moved or relocated their machine appreciate the fact that the weights, bracing feet, bars, and seating are all removable. Some taller owners told us they felt that this home gym is best suited for smaller individuals.

    Space

    Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System

    The Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System is a large, sturdy machine that can accommodate more weights and exercise programs than smaller home gyms. This machine is approximately eight feet tall and requires ample room for storage. Some users commented that, in spite of its size, this gym is relatively compact for all that it offers. Several owners remarked that the rubber parts at the front of the bench come off when the machine is moved, requiring duct tape or a similar adhesive.

    Space

    Weider Power Tower

    The Weider Power Tower is an upright machine designed for small spaces. That being said, its Olympic-sized width ensures stability for larger users. Some owners noted that although the Weider Power Tower feels somewhat "crowded" in smaller areas, this home gym is relatively lightweight and has a generally small footprint. Some taller owners cautioned us that when the Weider Power Tower is placed in a room with a low ceiling, head space can be compromised.

    If you feel lonesome when working out, create a fitness hour with your friends and invite them over to join you in your home gym. This will not only keep you energetic but peer comparison can be a positive motivator.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Price

    Price

    Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym

    A price of $543 puts the Bowflex PR1000 in the middle of the expense range for most home gyms. Many users felt this price to be adequate, especially when compared to the company's more expensive counterpart, the PR3000. We like the fact that the Bowflex PR1000 is a durable piece of equipment; owners who have had the machine for over a year report that it continues to hold up well. Customers appreciate this machine's versatility and range of potential exercises, especially for the price. However, a small number of the owners we surveyed wished they had spent the extra money on a more expensive machine to obtain a better workout.

    Price

    Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym

    With a price tag of $475, the Best Fitness BFMG20 Sportsmans Gym is another mid-range price option. Although several users expressed frustration with the amount of time and effort required to assemble this product, they all appreciated the quality results. Owners who purchased this home gym for easy to moderate workouts a few times a week felt it to be durable enough, but some larger customers told us they found the Best Fitness BFMG20 to be a bit flimsy.

    EXPERT TIP

    Rubber mats on the floor of a home gym are essential to keep the coldness of the floor from seeping into your legs when exercising. Yoga mats or children’s play area foam blocks work as well.


    Staff  | BestReviews
    Price

    Powerline BSG10X Home Gym

    At a cost of $769, the Powerline BSG10X Home Gym is one of the pricier options on our shortlist. Many owners purchase this home gym for its versatility and stability and are happy with the results, even after a year or more of ownership. Several of the users we surveyed praised this product's sturdy construction and easy assembly. A few cosmetic concerns surfaced as we conducted our research: some customers reported difficulties with the paint chipping or smudging, but they praised the touch-up paint that comes with the machine.

    Price

    Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System

    At a cost of $999, the Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System with Linear Bearings is the most expensive product on our home gym shortlist. Customers who purchased this gym were generally happy with the overall quality of the machine, noting that it has the stability and versatility of a professional-grade product. Although a few owners said they disliked the complicated/unclear set-up instructions, most of the owners we surveyed gave high ratings to the overall quality and value of this home gym.

    Price

    Weider Power Tower

    At a cost of $115, the Weider Power Tower is priced several hundred dollars lower than the other home gyms on our list. Many customers appreciate the value and durability of the Weider Power Tower, especially considering its budget price. They admitted that they expected a relatively flimsy product for the money but were pleasantly surprised by this gym's durability. That being said, some owners did express frustration over the difficult set-up and poor customer service that accompanied this product. Although the Weider Power Tower does not offer the extensive exercise options of some pricier home gyms, many of the Weider owners we talked to find this machine to be more than adequate for upper body workouts.

    Mirrors in a home gym may sound pompous, but they can be extremely helpful. Aesthetically placed, they can make a small space look bigger to help with claustrophobia. Physically, mirrors help you with visual appraisal of your form and if your exercise routine is focusing on the areas you want.
    Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System

    BEST OF THE BEST

    The Marcy Diamond Elite Smith System with Linear Bearings earns our "Best of the Best" award for several reasons. Despite its relatively steep $999 price tag, which some potential customers might find off-putting, those who own this machine tell us it's definitely worth the money. This product offers flexible options for all types of users, from beginners to more advanced athletes. We love the fact that owners have the choice of using traditional Olympic weight plates if they so desire. Several owners commented that this versatility makes the Marcy Diamond Elite home gym a great long-term investment. Another noteworthy feature is the Marcy Diamond Elite's linear bearings, which many owners laud for their smoothness. Although some users noted a slight range-of-motion limitation, many were able to adjust their exercises slightly to get the desired results. Aesthetics are another highlight of this product; several owners told us that the Marcy Diamond Elite's durable powder coating and leather finishing touches add a look of sophistication to their workout setting. All in all, this is without question the best home gym on the market today.

    Whether you're a beginner or an advanced athlete, the versatile Marcy Diamond Elite Smith workout system offers just what you need.

    Staff
    BestReviews
    Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym

    BEST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK

    The mid-range Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym earns our praise as the "Best Bang for Your Buck."

    This machine suits budget shoppers who want the flexibility and durability of an expensive home gym without the lofty price tag. One of the highlights of this product is its durability, with many owners noting how well it holds up to routine use even after a year or more of ownership.

    A wide resistance range between 5 and 210 pounds provides adequate challenges for a variety of sizes and fitness levels. Although some users expressed disappointment that the machine couldn't be upgraded to 310 pounds for a more advanced workout, most found that simply altering their workout routine led to satisfactory results.

    Many of the owners we surveyed considered the more expensive Bowflex PR3000 machine at first but ultimately concluded that the PR1000 offers more value and versatility for the money.

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