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Setting Up a Home Gym

With all of us mostly confined to quarters, here are the key steps to consider in setting up the home gym you’ll want to help you through these times:

  1. Search the closets, attic, garage, and any other spots those ankle weights from the 80’s might be hiding.  Any padding you might have, such as a yoga or camping mat, is especially helpful.  You’re likely to find some hidden gems.
    • Get creative!  “Exercise equipment” is usually just heavy stuff, pads or stretchy things. If you have stuff that isn’t intended for exercise, but is heavy, padded, or stretchy, it can be useful.
    • The simplest, most broadly useful thing is a sandbag.  Rather than buy sand, you can simply put cans, a bag of cat litter, or books in a duffel bag or backpack.  Anything that might leak or produce dust should be at least double, preferably triple, bagged.  
  2. Assemble your findings.  Is it all usable or does anything need repairs, is unsafe or unusable?  Err on the side of caution.  If you’ve loaded a duffel or backpack, regularly inspect the seams.
  3. Now that you know what you have, find a space.  It should:
    • Be at least 6’ x 9’.  That’s about 2 yoga mats side-by-side. Move furniture (using good technique!) if you need to – we’re in this situation for a while, so it’s worth it.
    • Allow you to move safely, including picking up and putting down equipment.  This means safe for you and your property – as in not damaging your floor if you drop a dumbbell or punching out a light with a push press.  Jumping rope takes up more space than you think – be sure to try it out before getting too far into your set-up if you have multiple locations to choose from.
    • Allow you to remain on camera for our online workouts.  If you have to cut something off screen, make it your head.  Your hips and feet are more important for your coach to see.  Plus, you’ll be down on the floor often for at-home workouts.
    • If you tolerate running workouts, offer access to the outside so you can run during workouts.  “Outside” can include your apartment building patio or roof, if available.  A long hallway is also useful.
    • Give it a try with some common movements – jumping rope, kettlebell swings, strict press, jumping jacks, and burpees cover the range of movements pretty well.  If you can fit those into your space without worrying about breaking something, you’re good to go!
That’s all you need!

Questions?  Let me know, I’m happy to help!  info@crossfitslipstream.com.

—John Bryant

Founder & Head Trainer