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Seeking recommendations for home gym equiptment

2

Replies

  • MikePfirrman
    MikePfirrman Posts: 2,875 Member
    edited October 2020
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    Also stay away from total gym (more junk)

    I had a Total Gym for nearly 10 years. Loved it and so did my wife. I've also done freeweights and could hit all the typical "benchmark" ranges when I was younger. But I'm 56 with a bad back from old injuries and a bad auto accident in my 20s (and a right knee that needs replaced within a few years), so I don't do a lot of barbell work any more. Amazon has a G5 right now for like $500 that's rated 4.7 stars out of 5.0. I think it's a very good option for people. Very similar to a Pilates reformer. Are some of the machines that Dogmom mentioned more commercial quality? Sure, but they are also huge and bulky for most home gyms. There's a reason that TotalGym has been around 25 years and that they have great ratings on Amazon and online.

    You can get them used sometimes for cheap, but the only ones I've seen (that aren't broken down used) are around $250 or more. The G5 is a decent model one with a footplate, which I prefer.

    NordicTrack has a new machine, but it's so new and the ratings are iffy. NordicTrack, Nautilus, Schwinn and Bowflex are all now the same company. Some of their machines are good (I have an AD Pro, which is an Assault Bike) and love it. But their customer service is HORRIFIC. I paid $1000 for the AD Pro (I would have gone with a Rogue Echo, but it was my wife's pick) and it broke after 2 years of very heavy use. When it came time to fix it, it was very hard because their customer service is horrid.
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    You can actually get them free often BECAUSE they are junk. If you like yours, good for you. For those of us who know quality from junk, I would NEVER encourage someone to get junk if they can afford not to and the OP says her budget is 4K. She can get something pretty good within that allotted budget easily.
  • MikePfirrman
    MikePfirrman Posts: 2,875 Member
    edited October 2020
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    You can actually get them free often BECAUSE they are junk. If you like yours, good for you. For those of us who know quality from junk, I would NEVER encourage someone to get junk if they can afford not to and the OP says her budget is 4K. She can get something pretty good within that allotted budget easily.

    Have a nice day. All your disagrees and you thinking you're the end all be all of fitness advice doesn't bother me in the slightest. I'm also not going to insult the OP, who might want to make her own choices. 1000s of 5 star ratings and 25 plus years in business say something.
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    You can actually get them free often BECAUSE they are junk. If you like yours, good for you. For those of us who know quality from junk, I would NEVER encourage someone to get junk if they can afford not to and the OP says her budget is 4K. She can get something pretty good within that allotted budget easily.

    Have a nice day. All your disagrees and you thinking you're the end all be all of fitness advice doesn't bother me in the slightest. I'm also not going to insult the OP, who might want to make her own choices. 1000s of 5 star ratings and 25 plus years in business say something.

    Yeah it says that there are tons of people who don’t know any better. I’ve been working in the fitness industry for years so yes, I try to use my expertise to help people buy quality equipment. I’ve used 100s of machines to compare and contrast quality, functionality, mechanics, etc. So, if I know what I’m talking about, I’m going to keep trying to help people make better decisions.

    You have used 1 Total gym and liked it. Good for you. But, in this area, I have far more experience than you, so I will continue to give advice to people who need it and I will continue to point out that I know more than you about THIS topic.

    Thanks though 😊
  • rheddmobile
    rheddmobile Posts: 6,694 Member
    52 year old woman here... I would say don’t be afraid of free weights. As you get older all those little muscles you use to stabilize yourself, the ones that the machines are set up to keep you from having to use, are what’s going to keep you safe and injury-free in your day-to-day life! If you’re worried about form, progress slowly enough that you are able to maintain proper form.
  • Go_Deskercise
    Go_Deskercise Posts: 1,589 Member
    Save yourself a bunch of money and just get yourself a tire and start flipping .... best exercise ever! :D:D





    **Totally kidding ... just said this in jest from a previous thread I was in that's now been removed**
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    @Go_Deskercise 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂
  • IronIsMyTherapy
    IronIsMyTherapy Posts: 482 Member
    Check out Powertec leverage gym. You may be able to find one used near you.
    https://www.powertec.com/workbench-multisystemtm-black
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 22,329 Member
    52 year old woman here... I would say don’t be afraid of free weights. As you get older all those little muscles you use to stabilize yourself, the ones that the machines are set up to keep you from having to use, are what’s going to keep you safe and injury-free in your day-to-day life! If you’re worried about form, progress slowly enough that you are able to maintain proper form.

    OP, please do consider this ^^^^.

    You don't need to visualize yourself struggling to achieve your 1 rep max with some gargantuan weight on the bar. Especially for your goals (which are not maximum bulk or even maximum strength, but some strength improvement, bone density, appearance improvements . . . if I understand you correctly), that's not the One True Approach. Progrerssive challenge is important, but risk can be minimized.

    You have options to reach challenging workload by changing things other than simply increasing weight (or more accurately, *before* increasing weight) to make gradual but gratifying progress. Yes, form is important, but there are many resources about freeweight form, including generic (YouTube, written materials, etc.), semi-personalized (places, including here, that you can video yourself and ask for form critique, or small-group classes if you have pandemic-safe options in your area, for example), or very individualized (personal trainer in person or virtual).

    Machines are not a magical guarantee of proper form and injury avoidance. There are body positioning issues even with a machine, that can create unnecessary stress. I'm not trying to scare you, but no mode is totally risk-free, and form is always a factor.

    There are also different benefits from different modes, and Rhedd's advice is excellent. If you're concerned about bone strength as you age - which is very sensible - it's also worth considering that balance is a key variable. That's not just a "stand on one foot" or even core strength thing, but there are stabilizers all over your body, and working with freeweights in a variety of positions helps develop those, not just strength-wise, but "waking them up" in a neuromuscular sense and making them allies in avoiding falls and injuries.

    When you write "I need machines that keep you in alignment. I don't like free weights for that exact reason. The pulley systems are so loosely goosey I KNOW I will injure myself.", I empathize. It's a bit scary to take on, a psychological challenge in addition to a physical one.

    If you prefer a machine, I'm not really trying to talk you out of it, but simply asking you to consider whether the additional benefits from freeweights (in context of your personal goals) might make it worthwhile to take on the challenge of becoming a woman who can lift freeweights and avoid injury. (Overcoming that sense of limitation might be rewarding and empowering in itself.)

    P.S. Comments from the perspective of a woman who turns 65 next month, didn't start becoming routinely active until mid-40s, and who already has osteopenia/osteoporosis (related significantly to a past medication regimen).

    Initially, I took a group class. This was not one where everyone's doing the same lifts at once or circuit style, but a small-group setting where there was group lecture/demo on basic form, help building a basic routine, then individualized instructor attention as we went through those starter routines, for personalized form monitoring/correction. Over a period of weeks, the instructor helped us add lifts to our repertoire, and build a more personalized routine that branched out from the initial basic one.
  • CipherZero
    CipherZero Posts: 1,420 Member
    I would strongly recommend a barbell, plates, squat rack with safety arms, bench, and a sheet of plywood to act as a base for dealifting.
    • Barbell - Cap OB86PB or OB86PBCK
    • Rack - Rogue or Titan Fitness
    • Plates - any Olympic plates you can find, 250 lbs + total
    • Bench - Flat, 600+ lb capacity
    • Plywood - OSB, four foot by eight feet

    With this setup (approximate cost USD 1500) there are roughly 1000 different lifts you can perform. The best part is in gym memberships you won't be paying for it'll cover its cost in about two years, and be good for use for two decades barring some major disaster.
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    CipherZero wrote: »
    I would strongly recommend a barbell, plates, squat rack with safety arms, bench, and a sheet of plywood to act as a base for dealifting.
    • Barbell - Cap OB86PB or OB86PBCK
    • Rack - Rogue or Titan Fitness
    • Plates - any Olympic plates you can find, 250 lbs + total
    • Bench - Flat, 600+ lb capacity
    • Plywood - OSB, four foot by eight feet

    With this setup (approximate cost USD 1500) there are roughly 1000 different lifts you can perform. The best part is in gym memberships you won't be paying for it'll cover its cost in about two years, and be good for use for two decades barring some major disaster.

    At least 20 years. Some of my commercial pieces are over 30 years old and are still in perfect shape.

    Titan has some quality control issues, some of their racks are hit or miss (have seen some reviews where the upright holes didn’t line up correctly).
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    Sigh, mfp won’t let me edit the above. My rogue rack had 0 issues and I haven’t heard anyone complain about quality with their products, but they do cost more than Titan.

    I
  • Theoldguy1
    Theoldguy1 Posts: 2,171 Member
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    Also stay away from total gym (more junk)

    I would not say universally Total Gym is junk. My physical therapist's office which is affiliated with a well respected orthopedic surgeons group has one. Now there are various models available some better than others.
  • Theoldguy1
    Theoldguy1 Posts: 2,171 Member
    Nice article about what Dean Somerset, a well respected trainer put in his basement gym. Especially like how he justifies various pieces of equipment:

    https://deansomerset.com/building-the-basement-of-champions-how-to-build-a-legendary-home-gym/
  • Theoldguy1
    Theoldguy1 Posts: 2,171 Member
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    Also stay away from total gym (more junk)

    I would have gone with a Rogue Echo, but it was my wife's pick

    We have a Rogue Echo and love it and experienced exceptional customer service from Rogue. While I was putting the bike together I found one of the handlebars had a hole drilled incorrectly so it would not go together. I called and a replacement handle was air shipped arriving the next day and Rogue sent a $50 gift card for my trouble.

    Can't ask for anything better IMO.
  • MikePfirrman
    MikePfirrman Posts: 2,875 Member
    The OP seems to have started a new thread asking about a Bowflex specific machine.
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    The OP seems to have started a new thread asking about a Bowflex specific machine.

    She did and then responded on this thread re bow flex on first page.

    I recommended working on form prior to ordering anything....
  • Dogmom1978
    Dogmom1978 Posts: 1,583 Member
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    Dogmom1978 wrote: »
    Also stay away from total gym (more junk)

    I would not say universally Total Gym is junk. My physical therapist's office which is affiliated with a well respected orthopedic surgeons group has one. Now there are various models available some better than others.

    While some or better than others, when compared with say a cybex bravo ft or even an inspire FT1, either of those functional trainers is clearly the far superior machine just in materials alone. Ergonomically they are also superior.

    I have worked with many different physical therapy studios over the years and have never seen one with a total gym of any kind. They don’t always have high end equipment, but I’ve never known one who would get something like that to use with clients. While I get that some of the line is obviously better than others, for the same or slightly more money, there are many different, better, options out there.

    If someone is happy with theirs, great. The OP wanted an all in one machine and had previous experience with gym quality machines based on her post. A total gym, is NOT and never will be a gym quality machine, so I was suggesting she get something more like what the gym has to offer.

    As it turns out, this particular OP probably should work with a personal trainer before making the leap into buying any equipment as they want a machine to dictate their form. She should work on form and then potentially spend the money on an ever better setup that includes free weights.
  • eatpolerepeat
    eatpolerepeat Posts: 25,917 Member
    Kettlebells and perfect your form