Last updated on September 24th, 2021 at 08:08 pm
Ever think about training at home and say to yourself “Hm, I wish there was inexpensive fitness equipment I could quickly buy to make my training more efficient and effective in my home gym!”?
Well look no further. Your time has come. You’ve landed on the exact article that you’ve been waiting for.
Was that dramatic enough?
Okay, well either way I’m going to tell your right off the dang bat that we’re going to be featuring some pull-up bars in this article because there’s been too many workouts here on SHJ (we have the most comprehensive workout database around, if you didn’t know) that revolve around calisthenics or some kind of “prison workout” where I’ve had people question whether or not they need to do the pull ups.
Although, please note that this article will also talk about some hacks for weight training as well.
Sidebar: If you’ve come here searching for the answers on how to get better at calisthenics, or pull-up alternatives for scaling your way up to them, look no further.
And, what I mean by that is I already answered those questions…so you don’t have to search for the answers…because we got em!
Oh, and if you’re looking back on this little conversation saying to yourself “Okay, yeah, but now I’m also curious about all those workouts you’re talking about.”, you can start by going through The Workout Database that I mentioned above, but I will also name a few for you here as well.
Some workouts to try with this in-home equipment:
- Stephen Amell Workout (Version One is Calisthenics)
- Jason Statham Workout
- Charlie Hunnam Workout
- Ian Somerhalder Workout
- The Nightrunner Workout (Our SHJ Parkour Guide)
And, those are just my top five CALISTHENICS workouts.
Maybe we’ll see a more official listicle for them [and more] at some point in the future…
This article will also give you some ideas for weight training as well, so don’t worry.
But let’s get into the reason why you’re here. I’m going to start with one of the least expensive pieces of equipment that also happens to be one of the most effective.
1. A Jump Rope (Or Speed Rope)
I personally prefer a speed rope.
But I wouldn’t force you to go out and buy one if you’re not used to jumping rope. If you guys have been to our YouTube Channel you might have seen how awful Brandon is at jumping rope, which is why he did our jump rope challenge with a more basic jump rope; which was even purposely too long and heavy for him!
The one I linked to above (in both the title and the smaller text below) is one I personally own and can vouch for, but there are even cheaper options available on Amazon as well: like this one (which looks really nice and has good reviews).
One really cool thing about a jump rope (or speed rope) is the amount of calories you can burn.
Don’t have a treadmill? Don’t want to spend a ton of money on a piece of equipment like an Elliptical or Concept2Rower?
Have no fear! Your handy jump rope is here!
Here’s some jump rope stats from CaloriesBurnedHQ:
For example a 150 lb person jumping rope at 1 jump a second (60 per min) for 10 minutes will burn just over 100 calories. Whereas a 200 lb person jumping rope at 2 jumps a second (120 per min) for 15 minutes will burn almost 300 calories.
That means, if you read our article on the secret to a flat stomach and six pack abs, jumping rope is actually an extremely effective way to get in some quick calorie burn to throw you under your daily intake!
Let’s stick with 150 lb person for a second and do some #QUICKMATH!
Assuming you have your rope handy (I’m calling it a rope now because I don’t want to have to keep reminding you I prefer speed ropes) while you’re playing video games. If after every single Fortnite, League of Legends, Hearthstone, or [Insert Popular Game Here] loss you did 2 minutes of jumping rope, and every win you did 1 minute of jumping rope; by the end of the night you’d burn like 250-500 calories easily.
Okay, that wasn’t really math, but it was meant to be a funny joke about how you probably lose a lot.
Don’t @ me unless you want to VS me.
2. Doorway Pull Up Bar
Okay, let’s not get crazy.
No, Stephen Amell is clearly not on a doorway pull-up bar.
If you thought that, whatever. You know what? I’m just trying to spice up the images a bit here and have some fun.
Speaking of Stephen Amell, though….he is known for his pull-ups and salmon ladder, including showing it off on American Ninja Warrior.
So give me a break, okay?
I actually have that exact $19 doorway pull-up bar [that I linked to above] and it works like a charm.
I’m around 175-185 pounds (depending on how much Chipotle I eat), and the only issue I ever ran into was that it leaves marks within the doorway so I was forced to give it some extra padding by wrapping some socks onto it with rubber bands.
But at least now I can say I’m part of the DIY craze, right?
And, since I know you guys really liked my #QUICKMATH segment in the last section, I’ll keep it going.
Let’s just say you do 5 pull ups or chin ups every single time you lose a game. You’re DEFINITELY going to lose 5 games a night.
That starts you at 25 pull ups a night until you can work your way up to sets of 10.
And guess what?….Then you’ll be doing 50 a night. BOOM. #QUICKMATH.
But all kidding aside I do recommend this for anyone looking for an extremely inexpensive route for pull-ups, although my next suggestion is my most recent purchase for my current home-gym setup after moving SHJ down to Florida and gaining a lot more space.
3. Pull-Up and Dip Station
This is the exact pull-up/dip station I just recently purchased from Amazon on September 7th.
If you want proof you can even check the pics of the initial share on my Instagram.
Or a little further into this article I’ll share an image of me building it and Gimli (my pup) just watching.
To answer the question you’re now thinking: I can’t share it now because I don’t want to spoil anymore items on this list!
This one only cost me about $150-$175 (and I think there might have been a coupon for it at the time as well), but I would personally recommend spending an extra $50-$100 if you’re any heavier than I am (again: I’m 175-185 pounds), or if you are going to want a super-duper-sturdy rig.
Ryan and my girlfriend, who are both lighter than me, have a harder time on it because they struggle with some of the bodyweight movements and can’t keep it as sturdy with all their squiggling around, but it still gets the job done!
4. A Kettlebell
I’m going to dive right into the meat of this one: I recommend getting either a fairly heavy kettlebell or having 2-3 kettlebells for the different types of training you can do.
I linked to the Bowflex kettlebell above because, while it’s a bit more expensive, it’s an invaluable tool being able to go from 8-40 lbs. with a kettlebell.
You can do consistent full body workouts while being able to change the weights this much.
That being said, there are also Amazon Basics Kettlebells that you could just grab a set of (or even one really does do the job) and do virtually the same thing..you just won’t have as much flexibility.
If you go out and buy a kettlebell I promise to continue making more kettlebell workouts.
We recently saw a Thor Inspired Kettlebell Circuit (and video guide) and I have been more consistent with adding kettlebells to our workouts; but I promise to do even better.
That’s how strongly I feel about this recommendation.
5. A Set of Dumbbells (or Two)
Let me start by saying that above is the images that were promised.
You can see there that I have my pull-up/dip station, two sets of dumbells, my jump rope (it’s there, just blending in) and a kettlebell (this one is roughly 40 or so lbs. and I also have a 20 lb and 10 lb kettlebell as well).
A set of dumbbells can get nearly every single workout routine on SHJ done.
Maybe not when the workout calls for very specific movements, but definitely when you’re okay with scaling those movements into different variations of the same.
I personally opt for 30 lb dumbbells and 10 lb dumbbells so I’m able to do all different kinds of lifts.
I can do overhead presses, snatches, cleans, and curls (to name a few) with the heavier dumbbells, while I can do all kinds of raises (front, side, lateral, incline chest flyes, etc) with the lighter set.
Oh, and by the way: this time I linked differently than the kettlebells on purpose.
The link above is to the Amazon Basics dumbbells that I recommend grabbing a pair of, while this link here is to the Bowflex Adjustable Dumbbells, simply because I think the $298 price range is a bit steep when you can really just grab a pair and get it done.
6. Gym Mats and/or a Yoga Mat
Okay, this one is by no means mandatory, but I just personally think it’s necessary for my own sanity.
Having my gym mats under helps me do different sliding movements with the kettlebells and dumbbells while doing planks and push ups, and it’s also much nicer to do the planks and movements like push ups and wall climbs/handstand push ups with them as well.
That being said, some yoga mats could be an alternative to the gym mats, but I personally own both.
I grab my yoga mat, heavy kettlebell and jump rope for my road trip and I basically have an on-the-go-gym.
Simple, but awesome.
I personally grabbed two sections of these gym mats and I was good to go.
As for the yoga mat, I promise I’m really simple: I stick with the AmazonBasics Extra Thick.
They even have awesome colors!!!
That was fake enthusiasm, by the way.
7. Weighted Vest or Body Armor
That’s Josh Bridges.
He’s basically as short as I am, and is a total badass, so I felt it was only right to share how awesome short people are in that image above.
Oh, and he’s wearing a weighted vest. Would you look at that coincidence.
My weighted vest isn’t in the image with my home gym equipment, but I have shown off some videos in it during my push up challenge on YouTube.
It’s also a must have if you’re looking to take on The Murph Challenge which we’ve seen with in Chris Pratt’s workout, John Krasinski’s workout (actually, they even did it together), and some other celeb workouts as well.
I personally like it because it’s super versatile if you’re looking to add it to all around training.
For example, I throw it on to train on the dip station, to go for a run, to just devote a day to simply calisthenics work, etc.
It makes life easy.
Heavier, but easy.
I personally own this one (also linked to above) but there are definitely tons of options out there, and the price range is all over the place depending on the supplier and how much weight you get.
8. Yoga Blocks
This one is just a personal preference, and something I use to make stretching and yoga poses more comfortable for me.
That being said: they are also really nice to have for some calisthenics movements as well.
Things like L-Sits and certain holds become easier with these, and they can even be used for changing up other movement variations like push-ups for example!
You can grab a set of these for as cheap as ten bucks and start using them to help reach those pesky movements.
I personally own these, but of course they have different options and packages for everything.
Thankfully yoga blocks are usually just yoga blocks! 😛
That’s personally everything I have at in my home gym.
Back home in NY I had a full garage gym, but I personally get it done with just these tools; and there’s even some things you can cut from this while still getting a sick workout in.
If The SHJ Army likes this article enough I can make some follow up articles like it, and I can even do one on some higher priced tools and pieces of equipment you guys might like as well.
For now, get moving, hit The Workout Database, upgrade it with our Upgrade Your Workout Tool, join our Academy, and level up your lives in any way you can!
Over and out.
SHJ’s Nick Fury
SUPERHUMAN SECRETS V.2
NOW UPDATED AND EXPANDED WITH A NEW SECTION & SEVEN BONUSES