More and more people these days are turning away from expensive gym memberships and setting up a home gym for just a fraction of the membership.
Even if you have a nice fat budget and a large space at home to set up your exercise equipment - your best bet is still to buy
Well, besides saving you some cash by combining multiple different types of workouts in one piece of equipment, one of these units will also use a lot less space, leaving you more room for other things to maximize your at-home workout options.
Before You Buy an All-In-One Home Gym
But before you run out and buy something, first you should identify and decide on your fitness goals.
Things to consider:
- Why are you looking to exercise – is it to lose weight?
- Do you just want to tone & tighten, be
heart healthyor do you want to build up muscle mass?
- How much time are you looking to devote to exercising?
- How much money are you planning to spend on all the home gym equipment you want to have?
After you've thought about those questions and decided on the answers, you will be much better prepared to narrow down the choices in the marketplace.
There are tons of all-in-one exercise equipment systems on the market and are almost constantly advertised on televisions, in magazines, and all over the internet.
The most popular all-in-one home gyms on the market tend to be those which are geared towards people interested in resistance training.
In other words: lifting weights.
Most often, these systems will include different stations that allow you to focus on different parts of your body and perform different exercises.
Many of these home gym systems will offer extra attachments that allow you to perform pull ups and an incline bench for you to do
The Most Popular All-In-One Home Gyms
Probably the two most widely known and also most popular brands of all in one gym are the
Both of those companies have created tried and true equipment for many, many years.
Another brand we believe you should consider looking at before you buy is Body-Solid.
Since we have found them all to have excellent, long-standing reputations with customers, we are going to focus on reviewing all in one home gyms from just those 3 brands.
Coming up, we will focus on:
- Home Gym Design
- Home Gym Overall Functionality
- Main Exercises & Accessories
- Customer Service and Support
- Overall Rating
Home Gym Functionality Comparison
No. of Exercises
Max User Weight
Max Lifting Weight
Bowflex Xtreme 2SE Home Gym
In general, Bowflex home gyms use resistant steel rods that bend instead of traditional weights that lift by cables.
Available to fit a wide variety of budgets and needs, the
The most basic version of the
However, the larger, more expensive
This provides you with an excellent home based workout on high quality equipment.
This Bowflex Xtreme 2SE is a full home gym in that will allow you to hit your body with exercises to tackle all the key areas.
In other words, you'll be able to completely work out your upper body, your lower body, and your core muscles.
There are over 70 exercises including:
- Leg Exercises: Build leg muscles from back to front and from your thighs to toes with squats, leg extensions, leg raises, hip extensions, hip abduction, leg kickbacks, deadlifts, and flexion exercises.
- Upper Body & Arms: Optimal chest, back and arm exercises by doing: bench presses of various types, pushdowns, pulldowns, arm extensions, various curls, rows, raises, retraction, kickbacks, and dips for the arms, back and chest.
- Core and Abs: abdominal crunches, oblique crunches, and trunk rotation exercises
What Many People Like About the Bowflex
We did some checking and found the Bowflex Xtreme 2 scores really high with reviewers for several reasons.
One big thing that many commented they liked was that it takes up a small amount of floor space compared to many other home gyms.
Other areas of praise were:
- It is really quiet
- Can be easily upgraded from 210 lbs. to 310 and even 410 lbs.
- Even though it was first came out in 2007 it's such a great design it is not outdated or less great than newer home gyms.
- It’s a high quality and solid machine that will last for many years.
What You May Not Like About the Bowflex
This is NOT the home gym for you if you are looking to build a lot of muscle mass. It was designed to get you tight and toned.
You will build some muscle mass but you will not get a big body builder's physique by just using the Bowflex.
Total Gym Fit
The Total Gym system has a been around for 30 years!
And all during that time it has been endorsed by martial arts legend, Chuck Norris.
The Total Gym is less expensive than the BowFlex and it uses gravity and resistance instead of traditional weights.
You have the ability to adapt the machine for a wide variety of exercises that will work on different areas of the body.
It continues to be an extremely popular machine and gets very positive reviews.
The newest model, the Total Gym Fit features twice the resistance levels of all the other Total Gym home exercise machines.
This means it has 12 resistance level settings instead of just 6.
This new Total Gym fitness system features:
- Best-Selling AbCrunch Accessory
- Ab Workout DVD: Get the Abs of your dreams!
- Updated 2-Piece Wing Attachment for wider range of motion
- New Ergonomic Glideboard with extra comfort system
- New Auto-Lock Height Adjustment System for easier transition between exercises
- Upgraded Steel Frame Reinforced Slide Pivot Assembly for extra strength and durability
- New Custom Fender System delivers a smoother ride
- Upgraded Pulley and Cable system
- Leg Pulley Accessory with Detachable Bracket Flexible nylon strap handles
- Upgraded Squat Stand
What You May Not Like About the Total Gym
Just like the Bowflex, this is NOT the home gym for someone with the goal of building big muscle mass. This home gym WILL assist you to build some muscle mass an will help you get toned and sculpted.
This is a more traditional multi-gym system that combines several different types of components.
It uses a series of weights lifted in a vertical motion.
The Body-Solid G series home gyms use their highest manufacturing standards and only the finest quality pulleys, cables, and upholstery.
Their entire unit is backed up by one of the best warranties in the home fitness industry. The Body-Solid In-Home Lifetime Warranty covers everything. Forever!
In this case, we have chosen the Body-Solid G1S as the one of their best home gyms in terms of value for the money.
Here are the 5 Main Stations and Workout Features:
- Lat Pulldown / High PulleyStation: Adjustable hold down pads stabilize your body for lifts beyond your body weight.
- Ab Crunch / Mid Pulley Station: this strength training station is biomechanically engineered for smooth, comfortable, full range of motion crunching movement. Specifically designed for isolating the entire abdominal area.
- Leg Extension / Leg Curl Station: Build muscular legs and stronger knee joints, with this leg developer. Has a biomechanically correct pivot point ensures ergonomic body positioning for natural and complete hamstring and leg biceps development.
- Chest Press Station: Optimal chest concentration and muscle development. Comfortable, multi-position handgrips to allow you to focus on distinct areas of the chest and triceps. Adjustable seat height assures perfect positioning.
- Seated Row / Low Pulley Station: Rows are essential for well-developed backs. Doing a seated row exercise will build depth in the middle back and train the harder to reach lower lats. The low pulley swivels smoothly and fully to provide perfect resistance for cable curls, upright rows, shrugs, leg abduction, leg adduction and more.
- 160 Lb. Alloy Steel Weight Stack: High strength alloy steel weight stack plates are machine drilled to exacting specifications and employ state-of-the-art nylon bushings for super smooth and quiet operation.
Accessories Included with Body-Solid G1S
Along with the base unit itself, you will also get the following accessories to use:
- Lat bar
- Ankle strap
- Towel holder
- Water bottle holder
- Training DVD to get the most out of your workouts
List of Main Exercises to Do With the Body-Solid G1S
- Pec Fly
- Bench Press
- Pull Over
- Upright Row
- Deltoid Raise
- Wide Grip Front Lat Pulldown
- Close Grip Front Lat Pulldown
- Bent Over RowSeated Row
- Shoulder Shrug
- Ab Crunch
- Oblique Bend
- Biceps Curl (standing)
- Tricep Press Down
- Tricep Extension
- Tricep Kickback
- Leg Extension
- Glute Kick
- Standing Leg Curl
- Outer Thigh Abduction
- Inner Thigh Adduction
- Reverse Fly
Consider Cardio Machines for your Home Gym
Also, consider cardio machines that combine the movements of several other machines.
For example, a rowing machine is perfect for anyone looking to engage more in cardio exercise and for getting a total body workout.
Many people really like rowing machines for their no impact movement which saves your knees, hips, ankles, and back from the damaging wear you would get from running.
A rower will provide you with an excellent overall toning and cardio workout.
Get the Ultimate Home Gym Combination
If you have the room in your home and in your budget, your best bet would be to buy a BowFlex or Total Gym along with a rowing machine.
That would allow you to work on your muscle mass, all over toning and increased cardio health.
It would also offer you a bit more variety than just using one machine.
The Final Word
Remember to round out your home gym with a few other little things like:
- a pair of dumbbells
- an exercise ball
- a yoga mat
Just those 3 things in addition to your all in one exercise machine can allow you to perform hundreds of different exercises and effectively workout your entire body at a fraction of the cost of a gym membership.