Starting out on your fitness journey is fun and exciting but it can also leave you a little bemused. Like any new skill or hobby, there can be a lot to learn and knowing where to start can sometimes be a little tricky!
Modern gyms have lots of kit to choose from – from cardio and weight machines, racks of dumbbells, TRX bands, squat racks, to slam bags and much more…but what do they all do? Which ones are better for muscle growth? Do you need to use all of them?!
Here’s your ultimate guide to the gym gear you’ll come across on your next visit and why you
should be using it!
These will fast become a staple in your training routine! Dumbbells are super versatile and you’ll be able to do loads of different exercises with them to work the whole body! You can use them as a pair or singularly.
Visited the gym during peak time and can’t get your hands on the dumbbells? No problem, grab a kettlebell instead! You’ll be able to perform lots of exercises with these too, like squats, one arm row, one arm overhead press, and weighted lunges.
If you’re really new to the fitness world and still learning the lingo, check out this beginners guide to gym chat
TRX Bands -
Bodyweight training routines are becoming super popular and more people are using suspension training as part of their weekly workouts. If you aren’t quite comfortable with grabbing the weights just yet, try using these to get started. Here’s how to make TRX your favourite training partner
Great for compound exercises, a barbell is mostly used for heavy weight training. You’ll see people using these for squats, chest press and deadlifts.
One of the most versatile weights in the gym, but often the most overlooked! If you do hit the gym during peak time you can grab one of these without much competition and get a great workout in!
With a sandbag, the body’s centre of gravity is always shifting because the sand moves around – this causes your core to engage in a different way than with a stable weight.
This is probably a piece of equipment that you’ll be familiar with if you take a boxercise class. It’s available on most gym floors and is great for releasing tension from a tough day! Grab a set of boxing gloves and give these a good punch - you’ll have toned arms in no-time!
If you’ve never used a punchbag before, be sure to ask one of the personal trainers for some advice – one misplaced hook or poorly wrapped glove could leave you with serious injuries.
Resistance bands –
these are great for adding into your routine if you don’t fancy using weights or if you want to add extra resistance into your routine. They make your muscles work even harder, are super versatile and well worth a go!
Once you’ve fallen in-love with training, you might benefit from taking supplements to help your body recover quicker from your workouts and help to build muscle. Most gyms sell popular supplement drinks to help fuel your workouts and protein power to aid muscle recovery.
What do you bring with you?
When you’re hitting the gym, you don’t need to worry about how you look: you’re there to work up a sweat, not to impress people! Plus, some branded gym clothes are super expensive!
Choose clothes that you feel comfortable in and you can move around easily in. A comfy t-shirt and shorts or jogging bottoms are ideal. You’ll also need a water bottle, towel and a pair of well-fitting trainers. Your foot-wear and support wear (sports bra and sports pants) are arguably your most important parts of your kit – seek out a professional to get the gear that suits your body and training.
Have you ever looked at the personal trainers in the gym and thought ‘I’d love to do that as a job!’ – you’re not alone! The fitness industry is booming and the demand for qualified personal trainers is high. It’s also one of the most rewarding career sectors to be part of as you’ll be able to spend all day, every day making other people feel amazing and help them reach their goals.
See how much you can earn as a personal trainer here