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Jim's Bodybuilding Guide - Intro
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Home Gym Exercise Equipment

Choosing a Home Gym Guide - 1
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Choosing a Home Gym Guide - 4
Total Gym Review
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Power Rack Review
Power Rack Exercises

Home Gym Exercise Equipment Guide

Part 4: Choosing The Right Exercise Equipment For Your Home Gym

We're on the final part of our home gym exercise equipment guide, and we'll cover the final 2 points listed previously. If you've missed the previous 3 parts, read them here:

Part 1: Personal Home Gym Guide
Part 2: Choosing A Home Exercise Equipment
Part 3: Choosing The Right Workout Equipment For Your Home Gym

5) Choosing weights based machines vs. band resistance based machines

Okay, I'm sure you've all seen infomercials for band resistance machines like the Bowflex, Bandflex, or soloflex, be it rubber bands, or plastic rods. What these machines offer is an alternative to the more 'traditional' weights based exercise equipment. Like the workout stations, these band resistance based exercise equipment also offer a wide range of exercises.

Band resistance machines offer little advantage over weight based exercise equipment. So what are some advantages and disadvantages of band resistance exercise equipment? Let's take a quick look.

Advantages of band resistance exercise equipment:

  • ease of use, and easy accessibility right in your home
  • easily adjustable and versatile
  • you're less prone to injury
  • offers a number of exercises
  • requires no spotter, allows for quick workouts
  • great for general fitness, but not for serious muscle building
  • requires less space than most weights based exercise equipment

Disadvantages of band resistance exercise equipment:

  • inferior to weight machines and even more so than free weights for muscle gains
  • rod based exercise equipment like the bowflex has variable resistance, which is inferior compared to non-variable (most weight machines) and free weights - see below for more details
  • has a jerky, somewhat hard to control motion
  • can be very pricey

Okay, let's talk a little about the variable resistance stuff mentioned above. What does it mean, and why are variable resistance exercise equipment inferior? Take the Bowflex for example, it uses these plastic or rubber rods as resistance. now lets say you're doing a bench press rep. on your way up. The resistance is always the lightest, simply because the rod is just starting to bend. about half way, the resistance increases, because the rod bends more, and at the top of the rep, the resistance is the greatest because the rod is almost fully bended. You won't be able to get the most out of your muscle like this.

In a comparison study done in "Weight Training: A Scientific Approach", various exercise equipment were compared, and variable resistance scored at best mediocre; however, it did score very well on likeliness to injury and ease of use. Free weights, of course ranked the best overall.

6 ) Buying exercise equipment for a home gym vs. going to a gym

Here's what I think, if you've got the time, join a local gym. You'll have much better benefits not considering the motivational factor joining a gym provides - seeing everyone else in the gym work their butt off make you wanna do just the same. ;-) But many people are short on time, like me. That's why I went shopping around for a home gym.

In the end, I ended up not getting a power rack and a set of weights, and decided to stay with going to the gym. But, I did buy a barbell and dumbbell weight set for those days when I just can't make it. I got about 200lbs of cast iron plates with it, it total, it cost me around $160. I figured it was enough for me to get in a 30 minute quick workout for days when I'm real busy. In the end, I felt it was best for me to make it to the gym.

For many people, going to the gym a few times a week isn't possible, so buying some exercise equipment for a home gym is the best choice. Depending on your situation, it might be better to join a gym, or just get your own home gym going. Money wise, if you're spending over $1000 for a home gym, that can buy you membership at a gym for over 3 years. ;-) So it really comes down to your particular situation.

Hate dealing with sales people? Why not shop online for a home gym?

>> Click here for the BowFlex Home Gym

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