Most people create their own home gym because they no longer want to deal with the hassle of commuting to and from the gym, or pay the high membership fees. Typically, a home gym will include a treadmill or stationary bike, a free weight set, and a weight bench or a multi-station weight machine.
The type of equipment and machines you purchase are based on both your budget and the amount of space you have to work with. There are also a ton of accessories to choose from, all of which are designed to improve your workouts and many of which you might have seen at the gym.
Accessories that help you lift Heavy
Ab straps are designed to work the abdominal muscles and consist of a couple of straps that hang from a bar. The user places their arms through the straps, hanging from them. The user then pulls their legs up to their chest. If you don’t have any equipment that works your abs then these straps can offer a challenging workout. They’re also recommended for people with back injuries who have a difficult time doing basic leg raises or crunches.
If you strength train, lifting chalk can improve your grip as you work out. Chalk is typically used by powerlifters and provides a rough surface for the hands, working to minimize slipperiness that’s caused by sweat. Because it’s kind of messy, most public gyms don’t allow it, but if you’re relatively new to lifting heavy it’s a must-have for safety reasons.
A lifting belt is commonly used to provide lower back support, helping to stabilize the back and prevent sudden jerky movements when lifting. These belts are typically used for squatting, however, some heavy lifters prefer to wear them during their entire strength training workout. The only downside to using a lift belt is that they can limit your range of motion and may even negatively affect your form.
Gloves used for lifting can serve a couple of purposes. First, they can improve your grip and prevent the bar from slipping out of your hands due to sweat and they can also act as a nice cushion for your hands and prevent blisters.
Lifting straps help to minimize the need for a strong grip when you lift. These straps are helpful when the lifter’s poor grip is the reason they can’t lift heavier weight. The straps tie around the wrists to the barbell, taking the pressure off the hands and putting pressure on the wrists instead. However, if you rely on using the straps too much your hand grip strength won’t improve, which means you’ll have to use the lifting straps every time you work out.
Wrist wraps are used to keep the wrists secure and steady while you lift. They help the wrists much in the same way that a lift belt helps the back. These wraps can also reduce your chances of straining or injuring your wrists and can minimize wrist pain. However, they can also affect your range of motion so you won’t be able to use them during certain exercises such as pull-ups and kipping pull-ups.
How to Stay Motivated During a Workout
Your workout also won’t be complete without your iPod. Music can be a big motivator and the perfect distraction. Music can make working out fun and takes your mind off the pain, allowing you to push th
rough it and finish a tough session. Create a playlist that gets you pumped up and can keep you motivated throughout your workout. So you don’t have to hold your iPod and because most styles of exercise pants don’t come with pockets, purchase an Apple armband that can hold your iPhone or iPod while you work out.
Top Four Workout Accessories that are a Waste of Money
A bench press shirt is a type of suit that’s worn in order to help the pectoralis contract so you can lift more weight. Wearing this suit will only increase your chances of injury. When lifting it’s important to take it slow and focus on improving your strength not just the size of your muscles. Bench press shirts will only encourage you to lift too much too fast, so steer clear of this weight lifting accessory.
A body fat tester is used to estimate your current fat to lean mass ratio. These devices come in the form of calipers, electronic scales or measuring tape and they’re not very accurate. The only accurate method used to measure body is fat is hydraulic dunking, which isn’t a hundred percent accurate. If you use calipers you’re likely to get a variety of readings depending on how much skin is grabbed. Electronic scales are very inaccurate and will commonly provide different readings every time they’re used. Don’t waste your money on these devices. Just looking in the mirror can tell you if you need to lose a little weight or bulk up if you’re too skinny.
Head harnesses are designed to train the neck. This device fits over the head and is equipped with a chain used to hold weights. These harnesses can be difficult to move around with and can cause neck injuries if you place too much weight on the chain too quickly.
A heart rate monitor is an electronic device that’s strapped to the chest or wrist in order to read your heart rate. If you’re lifting, you don’t need to use a heart rate monitor. These devices are more designed for cardio bunnies who need to get their heart rate up in order to burn calories and fat. But even if you do cardio you don’t really need to use a monitor if you’re eating right and working out for thirty minutes a day, four to five times a week. These devices will only show you how hard your heart is working. If you’re sweating and out of breath during a workout, then you’re definitely burning calories, you don’t need a fancy device to tell you this.