Written by James Cooper
Last Updated

Preparing yourself for a workout is like getting ready for a battle which requires you to have the proper “ammunition” to help and support you through your workouts. Some of these gym essential items vary depending on if you’re going out to a commercial gym or working out at your own home gym. A home gym can provide you all access to your own private shower, your preferred gym environment, and equipment that no stranger touched. Whereas, if you go out to a commercial gym it is inevitable that you will have to deal with other people and share a workout space, and pretty much everything inside the gym with them. Hence, bringing your own gym essentials will be convenient for you to avoid sharing items that should be personal.

Having your own gym at your house has its advantage such as convenience and privacy, but it could be very expensive to set up. While commercial gyms offer a wide variety of workout equipment and trainers available around to help you out when needed. So, whether you are working out at your home gym or commercial gym, these are the “must-have” gym essentials.


Home Gym Essentials

If you want to have a gym workout but you’re reluctant to go outside for whatever reason, setting up a home gym is an optimal option for you. Again, it could cost you a lot but it would be a good investment in the long run as long as you pick the right gym essentials for home use. If you’re just beginning with picking your home gym essentials, you can start with basic weights and tools to accommodate your planned workouts and strength training. But you can always just add a piece of equipment that is specific to your needed training.



Other than the area where you will put your gym equipment, you will also need a space to allow you to perform free body movements as some exercises require such space. You will also need storage space for your gym weights and items to keep your home gym organized.



This piece of equipment is pretty basic as it offers various workout possibilities. Even if you’re not setting a specified home gym space, This home gym essential is pretty much a staple workout tool from beginner to professional. For a home gym set-up, get at least 3 to 5 sets of various weights that you can use for numerous exercises and obtain strength. Dumbbells don’t also take too much storage space which can also be an advantage.


Fitness Ball

A fitness ball or medicine ball is a great home gym equipment to provide you with many body workouts. It could work with your arm muscles, core, and many more.



Kettlebells are also one of the staple weights to have on your home gym especially if you are looking for more challenge when it comes to weight movements that dumbbells can not provide.


Jump Rope

Jumping rope is a fun yet effective cardio exercise you can do at home. If you haven’t done it since you were a kid, you will find it challenging to come back to this activity. There are different types of rope you can choose from. The lightweight ones can help you coordinate with speed and timing while the heavier ones can help you with building strength.

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Yoga Mat

Whether you’re into yoga or not, an anti-slip rubber mat is one of the home gym essentials that can serve as a cushion when working with your abs while lying down on the floor. It can support your back from hitting a hard surface and this equipment can be rolled up for storage.


Resistance Bands

Using resistance bands for your workout will improve your flexibility and mobility. There are different types of resistance bands so make sure to identify which one you will most likely use for your workouts. And because of its compact feature, this equipment is also considered to be a gym essential item if you’re going to a commercial gym.

Grab Your Gym Essentials

If you prefer to hit the gym outside of your home, you should bring just enough bring essentials to avoid bringing in unnecessary weight and items that could only bring distraction and disruption to your workout.


Bring a Bag

Where else you will put your gym essentials but in your gym bag. There are only a few requirements to make a bag a perfect gym bag. First, material and construct. You must remember that you will bring clean items and take home used and probably dirty ones. So, it is ideal to choose a washable gym bag with compartmentalizing space that you can separate soiled items into clean ones especially if you’re planning to take a shower at the gym.

Second, consider the bag size. As mentioned earlier, if you’re going to the gym think as if you are going to a battle. Make sure that your gym bag can accommodate all your gym essentials without giving you the hassle of bringing it around especially if you’re taking public transportation.

Lastly, comfort. Make sure the straps are comfortable to wear around your shoulder to avoid unwanted muscle pain before and post-workout.


What's Inside the Bag?
Gym Lock

There are gym facilities that offer lockers with a self-locking feature but there are also some that require you to bring your own. Bringing your own set of locks can give you a sense of assurance that all your valuables inside the locker are well secured. However, not all lockers have a standard lock size. It is best to ask beforehand so you can prepare your own padlock because if not, you will have no choice but to lug around your bag at the gym with your essentials.

Gym Shoes

There’s a variety of athletic shoes to choose from but you have to find the specific shoes that is suitable for your specific training. Although there are all-purpose workout shoes you can use for exercises but the specified ones can provide the support that you need especially on weightlifting workouts.

Having more than a pair of shoes you use for workouts is also recommended. This will prevent your shoes from being torn and worn in a short period of time.


After rigorous training and exercise, your body will be drenched in sweat and you will be needing the towel for drying yourself from the sweat and drying yourself after you hit the showers. Make sure you have a separate towel for each. Facilities may provide you with a towel but if you don’t like sharing this personal item, you can always bring your own.

Personal Care Stuff

Gym facilities will be filled with sweating strangers in a closed space – a perfect breeding ground for skin fungi to form. Therefore, personal hygiene and protecting yourself from this danger are really important. Your personal care kit must include your own slippers for when taking a shower, anti-fungal spray, soap or body wash, deodorant, and feminine hygiene kit.

Water Bottle

When you sweat a lot through your workout, you need to keep yourself hydrated as soon as possible. Instead of lining up to get water, always bring your own so you get quenched right away. There are bottles designed to keep your beverage cold for long periods of time.

Earphones and Music Gadget

Did you get to have your own music right? If the tunes in the facility is not to your liking, bring your own playlist through your phone or any music player that will get you pumped up while you lift the weights, perform strength training, and cardio workout.

Health Monitor

All thanks to technology, you can monitor your heart rate immediately through a wristband. This will help you to identify if your body is taking too much toll from your workout so you can take a rest.

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Energy Bar

Energy bars will supply you the push you need before your workout and a replenishment once you are done. A high-carb bar is great for pre-workout while a high-protein bar is excellent after a workout to feed your muscles.

Weightlifting Gloves

Although gym facilities would normally clean and disinfect the gear and equipment, you still wouldn’t want to get your hands in contact with a metal that’s been held by other people you don’t know. It is safer to protect your hands with a glove when holding weights among other things when you’re at a commercial facility.

Also read: Best Weightlifting Best for Heavy Squates – 2021 Reviews



Home gym essentials are different from commercial gym essentials. Getting your home set up will be expensive but it will give you convenience and comfort. Going out for a workout will require you to bring a number of things to ensure a pleasant and hygienic experience while in a commercial gym.


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