The Best Compact Home Gym

home gym with equipment

A new year has begun, and you might be thinking it’s time to invest in a compact home gym. Your schedule could be keeping you from visiting your local gym, or maybe your membership is about to expire. 

Sometimes it’s hard to find the motivation to leave home when it’s cold and snowy or pouring rain, and work and family commitments can throw off your fitness routine.

If this sounds like you, at-home gyms could be just the answer. As with everything, there are pros and cons; however, the advantages of owning a compact home gym are plentiful. 

Here are just a few of them: 

  • No more sharing equipment with random strangers 
  • You get to work out at your own pace without having to wait for others to finish
  • Picking your own tunes when working out is much more motivating than getting forced to listen to the same songs in the gym 
  • It saves you time, gas, and money in the long run.

What To Look For When Buying A Compact Home Gym?

But, how do you know which equipment to buy? Let’s take a look at some of the factors to consider when buying a home gym: 


The size will depend on the space you have in your home. Consider what equipment you want and where it will go. Take measurements, and bring them with you when you shop. 

If you are weight training and intend to purchase a power rack or other heavy equipment, you’ll want to ensure your structure can hold the additional weight. Check with your local building codes office to determine the maximum weight allowed on the upper floor. 


The price you pay will depend on the equipment you want. You will find that home gym costs range from $300 to $3000. Keep in mind that cost doesn’t necessarily mean better quality. Stay within your budget. You can always upgrade later. 


If your goal is more geared toward toning and fat loss, you will want a resistance-based gym. If later you decide you want to build muscle, you should lean toward a weight-based gym. Home gyms with resistance are also best for beginners and those with limited mobility. 


The features you will get largely depend on your allotted space and your preferences. The best home gyms are versatile enough to allow you to do a variety of exercises. 

If you want to train your different parts of your body, you can find one with a pulley system, squat rack, or power rods. There are even some that already allow you to do a bench press without purchasing a separate bench (although they do come in handy). 

You’ll want to review what is offered before making a final decision carefully.

5 Best Compact Home Gyms

If it’s in your budget, the Bowflex Xceed is our first choice for resistance-based compact home gyms. The only downside to the Bowflex Blaze is that the resistance system will need to be replaced after a few years of use. 

The power rod has a lifetime warranty; however, normal wear and tear are excluded from coverage. 

Best Features

  • The Bowflex Blaze and work out your entire body with its 60 exercises. 
  • It offers 210 pounds of resistance, and it can be upgraded to 310 or 410 pounds. 
  • It offers sliding seat rails and triple-function hand grip and ankle cuffs. 
  • It as all of the features that you’d want in a home gym at an affordable price. 

#2 Weider Ultimate Body Works

If you want a home gym but can’t afford the cost of the Bowflex Blaze, the Weider Ultimate Body Works is a low-cost alternative.

Best Features

  • It’s a wheel/pulley machine with an incline bench with 50 different exercises. 
  • It has the capability to add up to 50 pounds of the additional weight stack.  
  • It does fold away easily because it weighs 250 pounds. Some might need help moving it. 
  • It is easily assembled and durable.

#3 BodyBoss Home 2.0

What sold us on the BodyBoss Home 2.0 wasn’t only the price tag, but its portability. With the weight of 15 pounds, this is one compact machine that you can take on vacation, so you’ll never have to go a day without a fitness workout. 

Best Features

  • Using resistance bands, it has a folding base and comes with a door anchor. 
  • The company claims you can do over 300 moves with this system; however, that’s a bit of a stretch. 
  • They do offer plenty of instructional videos and the one-year warranty is a plus.

It boasts the ability to provide users with both resistance training and a cardiovascular workout. 


Best Features

  • The machine offers 80 exercises and transitioning is a cinch. 
  • The Total Gym has a 400-pound weight capacity and arrives with instructional DVDs. 
  • Although it’s one the high-end side, it is versatile so that you can do short or long workouts, and it’s easy to use.

Our fifth pick is the most expensive, give or take a few dollars. The machine offers five stations for a complete workout.

Best Features

  • It comes with a 160-pound weight stack that can’t be upgraded. 
  • The machine has a lifetime warranty for the original purchaser. The warranty is non-transferrable. 

compact gym at home

We have provided you with a range of options for the best home gym. From the least costly to the most expensive, each will give you a well-rounded workout in the privacy of your home. 

No matter which model you choose, in the long-term, the best home gyms will cost less than renewing a gym membership year after year.

Indeed, fitness has never been more accessible!

PS! If you’re looking for an even cheaper solution – check out my Bodygym review article. Or, if you simply want a compact weight bench, check out our top 5 compact weight bench options!

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Article by:

Daniel DeMoss

I’m a personal trainer based in Denver (Matrix Gym) and a true fitness nerd. If I’m not training clients or working out at my home gym, I’m probably skiing, cycling or hiking with my dog Rufus.