These are the lessons from Westridge Barbell Club, Salt Lake City. The “club” is actually Dan John’s suburban garage, where he and his fellow
athletes do high-level training with basic equipment. John’s gym setup was once so extensive that it included a pair of Nautilus machines to work biceps and triceps. But when he relocated a few years ago, he learned just how minimal a home gym can be.

Start Small

John downsized to a single 28kg kettlebell. “That was my home gym,” he says. “I could press, swing, squat, snatch, and do many other
moves, including body-weight exercises.”

His advice: start with a piece of equipment that allows all those exercises.

Build Slowly

Considering a new piece of equipment? Think of the range of exercises it allows you to do. For John, it was a TRX suspension trainer, followed
by an ab wheel that he picked up for R60. For you it might be a chindip station. Or, if you have enough space, invest in a barbell set.

Don’t Splurge

“Rich guys who buy a huge facility never seem to use it,” John says. “Every good home gym I know of starts small and then grows.” The biggest waste of money? High-end cardio machines. “People rarely use them, and a good walk trumps most of the expense.”

Looking for ideas for what to include? Check out 6 pieces of fitness equipment we love to use.