T Nation

How Much Room Is Needed...?


Been looking @ homes for some time now here in MN (Northern twin cities). Primarily townhomes.

I would really like to have my own gym. I'm curious though how much room is needed? So when I'm looking I have an idea if place A or B has enough room to build my own gym.

Don't really want to put it in the garage as winters here are brutal, and I have several cars that need sheltered parking. Hence garage is out of ?. Looking for a place with a unfinished basement.

Here is what I would ideally like to have:

power rack
bench press
enough room for deadlift and explosive lifts
cable row machine ( lat pull and low cable pull )
couple extra benches
rack of 5-100 .lb DB.s
plate tree
GHR & or hip thigh leg extension
leg press
preacher curl
leg ext / lurl
stationary bike
row machine

and a good 10' x 10' minimum for control drills and stretch work

That should be all? Like I said above how much roomw ould I need for all that? I don't want to be crowded. Would like plenty of room b/w equipment.

PS: what do you all think all this would cost.
And any good links for decently priced equipment other then NY barbell.com?


What I have done in the past is figure out the dimensions of each piece of equipment and either draw it out on the computer or do miniature cut outs that simulate the size. You probably won't be able to specify the exact size because the layout could take many configurations and some will fit better than others given the same square area. With regards to your list I see a few things that take a lot of space but are limited in what you can do.

In my opinion the leg press, preacher bench and leg curl/extension would take a lot of room compared to the exercises you can do with them. I would look at those as nice to have if you have extra room. I've always had a lot of fun doing the planning for the gym and coming up with different configurations. I suspect that you could get all that stuff in without the 3 pieces I mention in a 20' x 20' space. Your platform (for deadlifts and olympic lifts) would also serve as you 10x10 area you mention.

As far as cost goes this could vary widely depending on how much time you can spend looking. A lot of good deals can be had on craigslist and garage sales. I would suggest you start looking right now and trying to pick up bargains as you can.


Do you really need all that?

I'd go for a full power rack and platform, adjustable bench, adjustable cable column and chin up bar.

In addition to that a rack of dumbbells would be nice, a bunch of olymic plates, a kettlebell or 2, a swiss ball, ab wheel, tubing, dragging sled, sandbag or 2, sledge hammer, tornado ball, medicine ball or 2.

Most of that doesn't take up much space. You could probably set that up in a single garage, but maybe a bit of a squeeze for olympic lifts.

Even if I had the cash, I wouldn't buy the additional machines, just more bells, plates and handles.


Oh, I just saw garage was no good, but if you got a good gas heater I'm sure you'll be fine.

Toughen up!