For a fitness buff, no home improvement project is more exciting than turning a room at home into a fitness center.
With the right equipment, enough space and proper upgrades, you can have the fitness center you’ve always wanted on your very own property.
Before you can get started with this project, you’ll need to decide which characteristics of a good fitness center are important to you and what you would like to prioritize in your center’s design.
Once you’ve decided how you would like to proceed, then you can work on implementation of your project.
Make a List of Must-Haves
Before you can begin your home upgrade, you’ll need to decide your priorities for your fitness center. The most common elements of a good home fitness center are listed below.
Some of these elements are simple to implement while others are complex, requiring changes to the house or garage where the fitness center will be located.
Space for Workouts on the Floor
Do you do Pilates? Yoga? Aerobic dance? These activities require space.
To ensure you have room for these activities, leave a large, wide open area in the middle of your center. Position your gym equipment around the open area.
Test the area by engaging in work outs before finishing your home fitness center to ensure that the space is large enough to meet your needs.
A home fitness center must have the proper equipment for your daily work outs. To decide what kind of equipment you’d like to use, research potential types of equipment by visiting gyms in your community.
Shop for sales at athletic stores to keep the price reasonable. Consult with your doctor, chiropractor and personal trainer to determine which types of equipment meet your health and fitness needs.
Proper Climate Control and Air Flow
Proper climate control and air flow is important for staying comfortable in your home gym.
If you’re planning to convert your garage into a home fitness center, installing a small heat pump or air conditioner and insulating the walls may be necessary for maintaining good temperature control.
Even if the room that you’re turning into a fitness center is already connected to your home’s central heat and air conditioner, it may still feel warm in the midst of a hard workout.
To stay comfortable while you’re working, plan to install ceiling fans to keep the air flowing.
Durable But Comfortable Flooring Material
Durable flooring material is important if you plan to engage in activities like running and jumping in place, however, aerobic exercise and yoga are best done in a room with carpeting to pad the feet.
If the space where you’re installing the fitness center has hard flooring made of concrete or hardwood, lay down a rug with a pad underneath, or consider installing carpeting.
Most people prefer to stimulate their minds as they exercise. Installation of a television, a stereo and speaker system, or both can help you make the room fun to work out in for hours on end.
Soundproofing may be necessary if the stereo system is especially powerful. Place the television up where it can be seen from all pieces of equipment.
There are many small details that can make a home fitness center a better place to spend time.
- Mirrors are helpful for people who enjoy doing aerobic exercises or yoga.
- Window coatings on the windows of the room can block UV rays and heat, thus preventing the room from becoming uncomfortably warm during a workout.
- A small refrigerator for holding drinks can make it easier to stay hydrated while exercising.
DIY Installation Vs. Professional Fitness Center
DIY installation can save money and is a fine option for homeowners who are motivated to make their own home improvements.
However, not all homeowners are qualified to install features like a heat pump and ceiling fan. Knowing your own limits can help you decide when you need help from a qualified contractor.
If you do need a contractor to install your home fitness center, working with a licensed contractor is important. A capable licensed contractor should follow local building codes and pull permits as necessary to ensure that the work done to your home is permitted.
This will ensure that all upgrades made to your home are safe and that your home fitness center will be an asset and not a problem when it’s time to sell.
Tips to Find a Licensed Contractor
Finding a licensed contractor for your home improvement project can be a challenge. Start by asking friends and family for referrals.
You may even ask your personal trainer for referrals as well, because your trainer may have clients who taken on the same project.
When meeting with contractors, ask them about similar projects they have performed and ask to see photos of home fitness centers they’ve constructed.
Check references if possible. Finally, ask each contractor if he or she can make suggestions for your project. The contractors you interview will likely have ideas for making your home fitness center more comfortable and more functional.
Even if you don’t hire that particular contractor to do the work, it’s still a good idea to get as many ideas as possible as you move forward with your project.
Keeping it DIY
If you’re planning to do the entire fitness center on your own, the easiest way to finish the project is to focus on non-structural changes.
Installing a rug vs. carpet, for example, can help ensure that the floor is comfortable, clean and safe if you fall without requiring any construction work to be performed on your home.
Even after your project is finished, continue to make regular upgrades to the equipment to ensure that your fitness center stays up to date and relevant to your needs.
Doing this will help ensure that your home fitness center will be an asset that will help you enjoy your time in your home for many years.