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Working out takes motivation, courage, and self-discipline, and it's hard to get yourself to the gym after a long day of work or if the weather is bad. That's why home gyms have become one of the most sought-after home features. Sometimes, though, having a gym downstairs still isn't enough to motivate you—but good design just might be. The best home gym ideas actually make you want to work out by blending style and functionality. Picture a chic yoga studio or a soothing lap pool. Don't you want to don your swim cap now?
Designing a home gym can feel daunting because it takes much more than a nice-looking set of dumbbells and an aesthetic yoga mat (although those definitely do help). If you're wondering about home gym equipment and essentials, think about what goes into your favorite workouts. Maybe it's a chic set of kettlebells or cork yoga blocks. If you do Pilates or yoga, a rope wall might be worth installing. We also recommend resistance bands, a small set of dumbbells, and your aerobic machine of choice for maximum versatility.
A home gym is worth it in the long run since it'll save you money on gym fees and expensive group classes. To organize your home gym, we love open shelves to keep your most-used equipment within easy reach and baskets for occasional or seasonal things you don't use the time. Ahead, we highlight 28 home gym ideas to spark your inspiration and get your blood flowing.
Home gyms can often feel like a hodgepodge of unsightly equipment and functional storage. To make the space feel more intentional, match the colors of your decor to your workout equipment.
Buy Now Green Floating Shelf, $51
Move It Outdoors
If your climate allows, move your weight rack outside for a luxury gym vibe. This is not only a great way to get in your strength training, but it also lets you get a little sunshine and enjoy your outdoor space.
Buy Now Pink Exercise Mat, $99
Create Serene Focus
To minimize distractions while you swim your laps, pare down the design elements. This brutalist take on an indoor swimming pool is the perfect setting for a centering morning swim.
Buy Now Chrome Pool Ladder, $211
Choose Soothing Colors
There's nothing worse than going to the gym for a relaxing workout only to be greeted by abrasive colors and neon signs. At home, opt for neutrals or tones that calm you to provide a restful place to focus on yourself.
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Leave Room for Relaxation
Part workout studio and part meditation pad, this home gym designed by Sherry Hart and Jennifer Jones Condon does it all. See those pretty gold and white decorative objects? They're actually weights that double as sculptures. Seagrass meditation cushions and a daybed are there when a head-clearing is preferred to sweating it out on the Peloton.
BUY NOW Peloton Bike, $1,495
Create Outdoor Access
If you're someone who prefers exercising outside, then make sure you design a home gym you'll actually use by choosing a spot with plenty of direct sunlight. In this converted barn by General Assembly, the accordion doors open all the way up for fresh air exposure. You can always just install a fan for the effect of a cool breeze if real exterior access isn't an option!
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Elevate the Color Scheme
Heather Hilliard made this home gym look elegant by painting it a cool shade of gray and opting for exercise equipment in a similar tone. The consistent color story makes everything feel chic without compromising on functionality. Also, a wall-to-wall mirror can help you work on your form while also making a stuffy basement or small home gym feel much larger.
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Serve Double Duty
This pretty home gym designed by Cass + Nico is tasteful, calming, and practical all at the same time. We love how it can double as a home office when it's not being used for workouts.
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Crisp white paint isn't the only option! In fact, sometimes a moody deep tone enhances the sense of intimacy and simply makes the space cooler. Here, design firm Sunny Circle Studio used Farrow & Ball's Hague Blue, hung abstract art, and incorporated decorative seating.
BUY NOW Farrow & Ball Hague Blue, $142
Optimize It for Yoga
Leanne Ford transformed a backyard barn into a striking home yoga studio. The leaning tree branch is the perfect wabi-sabi addition (it's a great plant choice when you're on a tight budget). If you don't have a backyard garden shed or barn to convert, consider painting the floor and walls of an unused garage white and then furnishing the space with stylish cream meditation cushions and mats.
BUY NOW Half Moon Meditation Cushion Set, $184
Pack It All in
You don't need a massive space to create a great home gym you'll actually use. Nestled into a corner with a single wall designated for storage, this home gym by Kelly Finley of Joy Street Design packs all the essentials into a small would-be storage room. A painted yellow ceiling makes for a sunny atmosphere, and colorful Flor tiles are easy on the knees.
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Make It Luxe
Mirrored walls are a gym design staple, but why not let your home workout space speak to your grand sense of style? Instead of plain mirrored walls, take note of this space by Ken Fulk and install an elaborate floor-length gilt mirror, hang pendants, and secure pretty wall sconces for task lighting.
BUY NOW Antique French Standing Mirror, $339
Consider an Indoor Pool
Now, this is a good use of basement space. In this home designed by Breegan Jane, the indoor swimming pool area feels sexy and stylish as well as serene thanks to a circadian rhythm light system that changes color to moderate your internal clock. Opt for a long, slim design that stretches from wall to wall to accommodate a narrow floor plan and allow you to get in those laps. If you can't make yours long enough for laps, install a jet that allows you to swim against the current in place.
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Separate It With a Pocket Door
If your media room shares a space with a home gym and/or home office, consider creating more separation with a sliding door. It'll help delineate the hobbies done there and add a little privacy without taking up all the space a swing door would. Another space saver? An exercise machine that lets you get it all done with one piece of equipment.
BUY NOW ProForm Hybrid Trainer, $599
Have fun with design treatments like wallpaper and decorative paint on windows and ceiling moldings. In this former bedroom turned home gym designed by Brad Krefman, "plaid wallpaper adds whimsy," he says, and a view of the backyard makes it feel fresh and inviting.
Set the Right Mood
Think about what you'll be using the space for so you can create an atmosphere that'll actually inspire you to, well, do it. In this space, Regan Baker Design incorporated plenty of nature-inspired decor to create a calming environment, from the hanging greenery to the decorative wood wall piece and wave-like wallpaper. It's perfect for yoga and other restorative mat routines.
BUY NOW Oak and Reed Yoga Blocks, $20
Add Spa Features
If space and budget allow, add some bells and whistles like a home sauna for some post-workout detoxing. Here, Studio Griffiths gave this wooden paneling an inky stain, and then back-lit the walls for added drama (heat-resistant lights are a sauna essential). This ensures an easy transition to the edgy concrete materials used in the adjacent space.
BUY NOW Kolo Spa Bucket and Ladle, $75
Brighten It Up
Dress It Up With Lighting
Design couple The Novogratz turned their sunroom into a personal gym. The large windows give the effect of being outside—but with air-conditioning! To ensure the room can also be used for other activities like reading, resting, meditating, or even as a mudroom, they kept the useable floor space mostly bare and dressed it up with whimsical lighting, floating shelves, and some artwork.
BUY NOW Everlast Heavy Bag, $55
Make Room for Storage
Choose a modern dresser or sideboard to store your belongings in style, then opt for a statement piece to jazz up the walls as Nicole Hollis did here. Set up equipment near a window, if you can.
BUY NOW Gladiator Overhead Gear Storage Unit, $85
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