All You Need Are These 6 Things In Your Home Gym

by Dec 11, 2019


Create a home gym easily with only these 6 things. This list of home gym essentials is less than $160 and will get you well on your way to making a healthy lifestyle change, which is the best gift you could ever give yourself. 

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.


Are you ready to start getting serious about working out and wanting to create a new home gym for the first time? Now that you have decided to actually make this lifestyle change, you may not know which equipment is worth buying for your workout space. I know that it can be a bit overwhelming deciding what equipment will fit correctly in your space and which equipment is actually worth the money before you get bored of it and pitch it in the trash.

I have been working out in my home since high school, starting with just dumbbells and therabands and over the years my home gym has evolved. Being a physical therapist allows me to learn which gym equipment is worth buying and which is junk. Let’s dive deep into what equipment is right for you and your home gym. 

What You Need:

1. Cardio Equipment

If you are looking to burn some major calories and shed some pant sizes, cardio will help you get the job done.

Cardio can be done in many different forms, but the most common is a treadmill. Whether you walk or run, a treadmill will inevitably get your heart rate up and help with your lifelong health goals. A treadmill is quite the investment though.

Another small, and more affordable piece of equipment that fits this category is a aerobic step or even a mini stepper. Not sure what that is? Click here to see how awesomely small this piece of equipment is.

Do some step aerobics and you’ll be sweating in no time. 

2. Strength Training Equipment


Cardio alone will not cut it for a fitness regime.

You definitely need to incorporate strength training into your routine.

It doesn’t have to be heavy weights, but find a mode of strength training that is right for you and your home.

And NO, soup cans will not work.

There are interchangeable dumbbells, therabands and home gym suspension bands such as TRX that are designed to improve your strength and tone your body. 

3. Balance and Agility Training Equipment


If you are going to get really serious about fitness, don’t skip balance and agility training. This will rev up your workouts far beyond what you can imagine. Balance training can easily be done with dyna discs.

All you have to do is put these under your feet when you’re doing any kind of standing exercise and instantly you’ve incorporated balance training. It intensifies your routine.

Agility training is a fun way to increase your heart rate without using a treadmill or bike. Try using an agility ladder that increases foot speed and is also collapsible (so it doesn’t take up a lot of space when not in use). 

4. Flooring

In any home, the flooring most likely is not set up like a professional gym floor. If you were to go to a gym where you would get a monthly membership, the flooring there would be quite shock absorbing. It would be easy to clean after a sweaty workout, and it would be comfortable on the feet. Your home most likely does not fit that criteria. Most home gyms have flooring with carpet, hardwood, laminate or cement (such as in a basement). This is not ideal for working out.

You will definitely want to consider whether you will be using a temporary space verses a permanent home gym space.

Two options are yoga mats and gym mats

A yoga mat is easy to roll up, lightweight and can go anywhere. 

A gym mat is bulky and somewhat permanent due to the fact that it is time consuming to install on the floor and take apart to store away yet is quite comfortable on the body. 

5. Footwear


Choose appropriate footwear, such as a running shoe, for support and shock absorption since your home floor may be non-absorbing material like hardwood or cement basements.

Definitely buy a pair of workout shoes that remain in the home and can stay clean. I keep a pair in my basement at all times and never move them from my workout space. It helps me to remember to avoid wearing them outside, and, therefore, I never track the dirt in to my workout room. 


6. Accessories

HR tracker: If you are  getting serious about your fitness journey, definitely invest in a heart rate tracker. An Apple Watch or Fitbit would be a great option to track your heart rate during your workouts but also when you are on the go. Amazon sells some cheaper options like this watch that still function just like a FitBit.

Mirror: If your space allows, definitely have a full length mirror in the room so that you can get feedback on your form during your workouts. It will also help you with injury prevention.


Hair ties, head bands, deodorant, water bottle, sweat towels, etc. Keep a basket nearby to keep all your little accessories and important items all in one place so when you go to workout, you will never forget anything. This will make for a smooth transition from your normal daily life to your workout time. I like to keep hair ties, head bands, sweat towel, extra deodorant and an extra water bottle in my basket. These essentials make for a good workout.

Cost Breakdown

I wanted to give you a brief summary of what a home gym consists of. It’s not overwhelming at all and is rather quite simple.

All you need is one piece of cardio equipment, one piece of strength training equipment, one piece of balance and/or agility equipment, proper flooring, good footwear and a small basket of accessories and you’re ready to go. 

Aerobic Stepper: $32.79

Resistance Therabands: $20.98

Dyna Disc: $18.99

Yoga Mat: $16.99

Athletic Shoes: $34.99

Fitness Tracker Watch: $31.69

As low as: $157 to create your very own home gym

So are you ready to go? I really hope so. Don’t let a few pieces of equipment stop you from a lifestyle change that will be the best decision of your life. What better gift can you give yourself than the gift of health and wellness? I’m so proud of you for taking the time to read this, to move forward and commit to working out at home. 

If you are looking for inspiration to stay committed to your workouts, continue reading these 25 motivational quotes to for the mom-fitness enthusiast!

Also, check back after New Year’s for a list of the ultimate home gym equipment “must haves” for (1) beginners (2) on a budget (3) moderately sized home gyms and (4) for the advanced home gym.


Keep Smiling,

Dr. Jena Bradley, DPT



This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.



**It is important to always consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program and get medical clearance. Always warm up thoroughly and stretch after all workouts. and Jena Bradley will be not be responsible or liable for any injury sustained while exercising at home, gym or elsewhere. Perform exercises at your own risk.

About Dr. Jena Bradley
About Dr. Jena Bradley

Jena is a mom of 4 darling little girls, a physical therapist and founder of Live Core Strong, a blog focusing on motivating moms to live a life that incorporates fitness and fun throughout their motherhood journey.  She aims to be the friend you always wanted to have who could guide you through the “fog” when faced with an “I don’t know what to do” mommy moment. At the most inconvenient time of her life, she embarked on a journey of sharing her story and expertise to inspire the next generation of healthy moms. You can learn more about Jena by visitng her ABOUT page. 

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Hi there, friend! I’m Jena, a mom of 4 and a Physical Therapist with a passion to motivate moms! I want to inspire you to be your best self by sharing my experiences and trusted advice on motherhood, health and fitness.

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