Whether your goal is to lose weight, build muscle or simply to get fit – the right home fitness equipment is key. The detailed reviews, comparisons and guides here at Fitness Review will get you results, fast!
Scroll down for the most popular guides – or use the menu above to zoom in on home gyms, treadmills, exercise bikes and more. For readers new to home fitness, the guides to activities, food and nutrition are designed to get you up to speed fast.
To say that the world of home fitness equipment is complex would be an understatement. There are 1000’s of different items in 100’s of categories to choose from. Even when you have decided on a particular type of equipment or accessory, you’ll need to decide from many models and options.
Fitness Review takes the guesswork out of choosing the best fitness equipment for you. There are three parts to this process:
If you would like to improve your fitness, and are not sure where to begin, then I recommend you start with this Guide to Choosing Fitness Equipment. This takes you through a simple process to quickly narrow your choices. The ‘deciding factor’ will often be the machine you enjoy using the most – this always has been the single biggest determinant of how long you will stick to your fitness plans!
Many of you would like to lose weight while on the path to fitness. This can be achieved in a number of ways. Combining a healthy diet with a machine or workout routine that you actually enjoy will make reaching your goals a lot more enjoyable. You’ll find many articles covering healthy eating in the Food and Diets section. There are also detailed guides to the best equipment for those looking to burn some fat.
Broadly speaking, you can divide fitness machines into three categories.
Cardio Equipment: This category includes items such as treadmills, elliptical trainers, exercise bikes, rowing machines and many more. These items can be used at home or in the gym. You’ll be amazed at the number of variations, and the way that technology has been integrated to make this type of sports equipment more enjoyable to use.
Strength Building: from free weights to Kettle Bells, full Smith Machines or Multi-gyms to smaller items like pull-up bars – there are many ways you can build up your muscle while at home. Fortunately, these items can be ordered online and delivered right to your door.
Accessories and Gadgets: This is a wide ranging category, though we should acknowledge that not all forms of fitness even include heavy equipment or tools. For example Pilates and Yoga need only a quality mat. Often a smart watch or an app which tracks your progress towards your fitness goals will make a real difference in maintaining the drive and motivation to get there. We have you covered with detailed comparisons of the leading fitness accessories.
Some of the leading online retailers will go out of their way to make delivery and setup of your fitness equipment easy. At Fitness Review, this is a requirement for listing. You can be sure that your chosen machines will be ready to use quickly and easily, whether you live in a busy city or a quiet village. Once you get your home fitness routine set up, crowded gyms will be a thing of the past.
Everyone will have different ideas when it comes to the perfect piece of fitness equipment. Some people want to enjoy the outdoors, with running gear or trampolines. Others would prefer machines which can be safely stowed away between uses, for example rowing machines or steppers. How much room you have available makes a big difference to your choice of kit. You’ll find information in the guides and product overviews here at Fitness Review which will help you make the best choice for your setup.
Fads come and go – though the humble treadmill stays popular year after year. You’ll be amazed at the technology they can include these days, with automatic incline (check the latest 40% models in my NordicTrack Treadmills guide), sensors, app and music player compatibility and cushioned surfaces. You can get a basic treadmill for around £100, and a very good one for >£200 – if you want the proper gym-spec machines, you’ll have to dig a little deeper. For more information on the different options, see my detailed starting page for Best Home Treadmill Reviews. Things to look for include incline, padded running surfaces and the ability to fold your treadmill between runs.
Many people starting their journey to fitness or wishing to lose weight choose an exercise bike. There are a lot of advantages – though the main one is that you can start gently and work up to more intense workouts as your fitness level improves. You can also cycle in front of the TV! The real budget models can get you started for around £65, though I recommend you check out the mid-range at least – as you’ll get some serious kit for your money there. My detailed starting page covering Exercise Bike Reviews has all the information you need.
Some people call these ellipticals, other’s cross-trainers. Whatever you call them, the workout is going to be very intensive. With both legs and arms working hard at the same time, these machines really do burn through the calories. Some models also include pedals, making them exercise bike – cross trainer hybrids. Expect to pay around £100 for a basic model and up to £300 for a higher spec fully featured one. You can find out more in my Elliptical Trainer Reviews section.
Many people look at the high calorie burn rate of a stepper and jump right in. What you’ll find, especially if you are just getting started, is that these are best in short bursts. An hour on a stepper might be tough unless you have a had a lot of practice! Great for cardio and fat burning, and ideal for those looking for toned legs – steppers are also a lot cheaper than most types of fitness equipment – starting at just £25 for a budget model (and going into the thousands for a gym-spec stairmill). Check out my page covering Stepper Reviews for the full run-down.
You can combine cardio with a whole body workout with a rowing machine. The sitting position might look relaxed compared to other equipment – though I can assure you that these can give an intensive workout. Folding models are popular, as rowers can take a lot of floor space otherwise. The top end rowing machines use ‘authentic’ water-resistance, whether this is a gimmick or really adds to your experience I will leave you to decide. You can find links to a lot of reviews and comparisons of the main features in my Best Rowing Machines page.
More Home Fitness Equipment Types: The categories above cover the most popular types of home fitness equipment, though there are plenty of niche products. One that is growing in popularity recently are vibration plate exercisers. These give you a very intensive workout by forcing you to brace against different shaking movements. Separately, abs belts use electrical stimulation to tone up those stomach muscles.
There are broader categories when it comes to home multi-gyms. Key with these is deciding what you want to achieve before you buy. For example, some people want options to work different muscle groups between their main commercial gym sessions – while others want to replace trips to the gym altogether by building their own home gyms. I also include abs and core equipment in this category.
You’ll find plenty of options, reviews and information on weights and home multi-gyms here at FitnessReview.co.uk – in the following broad categories:
Here I include everything from full multi-seat gyms with all the options and big metal frames to hold them in place – down to simple benches with a rack and pulley system for your legs. A basic setup (along with some extra free weights) can be had for a reasonably price (£100 for the better spec bench type gyms and up from there). If you are serious about weight / strength training, and have the space – then some of the higher end equipment is amazing. Check out my Home Weights Gym Reviews section for information on how to narrow those choices further.
These ingenious machines get around the issue of not having a spotter at home by providing a mechanism to stop your weights falling down onto you for presses and squats. The concept is simple enough, with levers and double bars to have the barbell between. As usual you will find a wide range in the quality available.
Think all free weights are the same? Better think again! I have reviews of the popular kettlebell, dumbbell and barbell ranges. You will also find lots of related accessories, including ‘shake weights’, resistance bands and more. Check out my Best Free Weights section for more on this.
Losing some fat, building tone or even going for that coveted 6-pack is top of the list for many home fitness fans. You might be surprised just how many types of equipment you can get for this. Sit up benches are the mainstay, though machines you lay down in on the floor and crunch from there are more popular these days. You can try a roller, or even get more adventurous and go for something like a power-tower. If you covet trimmed abs, check out my Abs and Core Fitness Equipment reviews page here.
A common question with Abs equipment is do ab toning belts work? The answer is a qualified yes (see the article, they are best for the finishing touches, together with a healthy diet). You can find out more about the different options in this area on my Best Abs Belts page.