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Facility Outfitting. All Time Favorite Equipment? Other Suggestions?


Hello there!

My local rowing club is finally going to upgrade its facilities as there is a steady stream of new non-rowing members.
We’ve been looking forward to this for years, and now that its on the table, I will be doing some research on behalf of the club.

So the question is, what machines should we go for?
As this is a community of brutally bad ass people with years of accumulated knowledge of the commercial gym, I’m hoping you’ll have some suggestions and inspirations about equipment or spesific machines.
Do you have any all-time favorites? Is there any specific producers or product lines that are particularly noteworthy?
How about the dynamic machines, i.e. Hoist’s ROC-IT line? I seem to recall seeing a video of the Mountain Dog using one of these, commenting that it was a great piece of equipment.

I’m mostly interested in feedback on bodybuilding type machines, as we’re fairly certain of what strength and conditioning equipment we’ll go for. I.e. Reverse Hypers, Belt Squats, Chest Supported Rows etc.

Any and all replies much appreciated.
Merry Christmas,


Hammer Strength are regarded as the industry standard for bodybuilding machines


Used to train at a gym which had Strive equipment. I liked these because in addition to adjusting the seat, arms, etc. to fit your size, you could also adjust the position of the cam. Doing this changed where in the ROM the greatest and least amounts of leverage or disadvantage were.


x2 on the Hammer Strength. My gym got renovated about 2 years ago and put these in. Best machines I’ve ever used, they have ones with a built in weight stack (like most machines) and ones where you load on your own free weights. Both are great.


x3 on hammer strength. Some hoist machines are good though and the best of the two might depend on the exercise. Is there any way to try some of this stuff out ahead of time? I’m not sure what options there are for that since I’ve never bought commercial gym equipment. Save space for the power racks too, the worst thing for experienced gym users is to show up with all those occupied when its the core of their workout.


Thanks fellas, I’ve had my eye on Hammer. Hammer Strength does seem to be whats usually around here in Oslo as well.
@boatguy Thats seems cool, I’ll check out Strive. As this gym is going to somewhat limited it’d be nice with some machines that you could mix up at least a little bit.


Chest Supported Iso Row. This is the “Vertical” or “Mid-Row.” Hammer Strength also has a “High” and “Low” row. I like the mid.

Here is a plate loaded deadlift/shrug machine. It’s pretty cool, you can do idiot proof deadlifts/shrugs/split squats. This one is from “Legend Fitness.”

You gotta have a 45 degree back raise. This one from Elite Fitness Systems has all the fancy extras. The one at my gym is more basic, but still effective. You want it big and sturdy, so you can hold a barbell while you use it.


T-bar row and a 45 degree back raise (the Elite FTS one is really good). Cybex hack squat if you’re getting a hack squat. Beats hammer strength into a cocked hat IMO.


I’m not totally clear on what makes something “bodybuilding equipment” vs “S&C equipment”. Like, chest-supported rows can be a solid “bodybuilding” exercise. So, I’m a little confused on what you have compared to what you need.

For “bodybuilding”, I’d make sure you have plenty of racks, a good pulley system for pulldowns, rows, and crossovers, a good leg press, I prefer a standing leg curl over seated, and something for calves (probably seated). Dead-squat bar for presses, pulls/squats, and walks. I’d opt for a few landmine units so you can do t-bar rows, Meadows rows, and all sorts of presses/squats. Not sure how much room and budget you’re working with, so building the dream gym might only go so far.

Hammer Strength DY row. Dorian Yates consulted on the design. He has a big back. That means it builds big backs. (Seriously though, it’s an awesome machine.)