Tips for Home Gym Design: Fostering Physical and Mental Well-Being in Interiors
The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being.” If one or more of these aspects are compromised, quality of life and happiness can be severely affected. In recent years, and particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, this has proven to be especially challenging. Commuting restrictions forced many to stay indoors and businesses to pause in-person operations, aiming to prevent the virus from spreading but inevitably sacrificing psychological, emotional, and even physical health in the process. As a result, people’s lifestyles shifted to find new ways to address their well-being, including adapting their living spaces accordingly. Home gyms, for example, became a popular initiative.
Although home fitness has been around for decades, it has evidently taken on a new role in recent years –and its benefits are now clearer than ever. Transforming residential spaces into small-scale exercise studios can be extremely convenient, allowing building occupants to exercise their bodies and mentally escape from the chaotic outside world. All of this from the comfort of their own home, in a controlled environment, and while saving the time one would typically spend to pack bags, travel to the gym, find a locker and get the right equipment.
Home gyms can be set up in a multitude of creative ways and with a wide variety of equipment, whether it’s the traditional home gym with high-end machines, or simply a clear area with smaller accessories. Regardless of the layout, it should become a safe place that adapts to users’ specific needs and fosters their health in every aspect, from physical to mental. So, how to design a good home gym? A lot comes down to personal preference and workout style, but there are general tips to follow to ensure an attractive and motivating space. We dive into some of these below, aiming to inspire architects, designers and homeowners looking to integrate health and fitness into the home.
Choose a comfortable space
Because they often have leftover space, basements tend to be a popular alternative when selecting a gym space. Other options include an unused guest room, a home office that doubles as a gym, or even adding a mobile gym set to move around wherever there’s any available space. Of course, the space must be big enough to circulate comfortably, but its size will depend on availability, personal goals and needs. A small yoga studio, for instance, will require less room than a fully equipped gym with a treadmill, weights, etc. As a general rule, the American Council on Exercise recommends around 20 to 50 square feet (2 to 5 sqm) of space for exercising with free weights, 30 square feet (3 sqm) for a treadmill, and 50 to 200 square feet (5 to 19 sqm) for a multi-station gym. In addition, another point to consider is a room’s flooring and walls, as they should ideally be durable, comfortable and easy to clean. This can be addressed by cladding with materials like rubber tiles and vinyl, or simply by using cushioned surfaces that can be rolled out individually, like these handmade leather fitness mats.
Pay attention to the layout
The size of a home gym will be subject to space limitations, but it can be optimized with the proper layout. Larger equipment like weight benches or wall bars must be located in a way that there is enough room to navigate between them, and any electronic machines must be placed near electrical outlets. Functionality is key; spaces should be zoned and organized to ensure all exercises can be undertaken adequately. For example, in larger rooms it can be useful to have a yoga area, a weights section, a cardio corner and a free space for floor exercises, stretching, or solely to make a room feel less cramped. Contemplating storage space to hold equipment can also be a big plus, which can be easily solved by adding shelves and vertical sets for weighted balls, dumbbells and kettlebells –or even organizing each of these accessories in one complete setup.
Prioritize lighting and ventilation
It’s not necessary to flood a home gym with the kind of light one would find in a commercial gym, but there must be enough to create an inviting atmosphere. If possible, light fixtures should be positioned in relation to the workout zones and light levels should be adjusted for various activities, often requiring a combination of diffused and direct LED lighting. Although artificial lighting can be perfectly effective, the ideal setting will always be a room with windows and natural light –especially if the workout tends to be done during the day. Besides boosting mood and energy levels with sunlight, having a window enables natural ventilation and clean air to enter, which in many cases is a must. Of course, a similar effect can also be achieved by using air-conditioning, ceiling fans or even a dehumidifier to get rid of condensation.
Select the right equipment
All of these space-related factors are crucial for a well-designed home gym. However, the equipment also plays a big role, both in terms of functionality and aesthetics. Even if the gym has an optimum layout, it will not be the most motivating space for users to exercise in if it includes low-quality mechanisms with an outdated look that doesn’t fit the room’s aesthetics. On the contrary, using equipment such as that developed by PENT Fitness creates the opposite effect. PENT Fitness provides luxury, customizable gym equipment for homes (as well as personal studios, hotels and spas) that blend craftsmanship with ergonomic design. Through timeless natural materials and an elegant appearance, these strive to act both as fitness equipment and high-quality furniture pieces.
Each piece is made from manually crafted wood, genuine leather and stainless steel. Different combinations and finishes are available to suit different styles; while the Scandinavian Ash Collection creates a warm look, the Gold Collection translates into a sleek, contemporary aesthetic. Moreover, the range of products adapts to various workout needs, whether it be for weight lifting, cardio exercises or yoga routines. The SCALA Wall Bar, for instance, allows users to perform most exercises created for standard gym ladders, whereas the COLMIA luxury dumbbells set or RACKA accessory set is ideal for various resistance and cardio routines.
All in all, combining high-quality equipment with a well-designed space makes the home workout experience a lot more engaging for building occupants, ultimately promoting a healthier (and often, happier) lifestyle.
Learn more about PENT Fitness luxury gym equipment here.