There’s no two ways about it, CrossFit is expensive. With most boxes charging per session, monthly bills can easily run into the $200 range. That’s not say that it’s not worth it to spend time at your box. The motivation and personal attention you receive during training sessions is extremely valuable and is a huge part of why CrossFit is so successful. But if you need to save some money, you can buy CrossFit equipment packages to use at home.
Learn the Movements First
Learning the proper techniques and form is crucial to performing the exercises that form the backbone of CrossFit workouts. Exercises such as the snatch, dead lift, and cleans, should be learned from a trained professional to insure avoid injuries. For that reason, joining a CrossFit box should be part of your initial learning process, at least until your comfortable with all the necessary exercises.
The Basic Equipment
First and foremost you need an Olympic bar. If you’re going to be doing Olympic lifts in your home gym, you need to make sure you get a decent bar. A good bar should last the better part of your lifting career, so don’t skimp here. This bar by Ivanko is great addition to any home gym. It may seem pricey, but it will endure the endless amounts of drops and punishment from Olympic lifting. If you want to spend less, just be sure to look for something that is designed for Olympic lifts. Some bars say they are, but will come apart after being dropped repeatedly.
The next item you’ll want is a rubber weight set. You can use steel plates to save money, but expect the noise level to be substantially higher. These plates from Troy are perfect for lifters of any experience level. They are all the same size, so you can start as light as you want. And they are durable, so they will hold up to repeated abuse.
No CrossFit equipment package would be complete without a pull-up and dip station. Depending on the amount of space you have available, there are a couple of options. For those with the floorspace, a pull-up/dip tower is a great solution. This tower from XMark is good for dips, pull-ups, and also has padding for leg lifts. It’s a solid piece of equipment that won’t rock and shake while you’re using it, and it comes at a reasonable price.
If you’re short on floorspace, a wall-mounted pull-up and dip station may be a better option. The Ultimate Body Press wall-mounted pull up bar is an ideal solution in this situation. It has foam grips over most of the bars surface. It also includes a dip station. Installation is reasonably straightforward. Just make sure it is mounted to the studs in the wall. All in all a great product.
Basic CrossFit equipment packages should include all of the aforementioned equipment. Now we’ll discuss the equipment that would be nice to have if you’ve got the space and the cash.
The next thing on your list should be a squat rack. As with the Olympic bar, don’t skimp here. Go with something that is easy to work with and easy to adjust. Also make sure it can handle weight you’ll be loading up on it. This squat rack from Deltech is a nice piece. The weight hooks can be used inside or outside of the cage depending on your preference. There are safety bars for use inside the cage. It’s made of heavy gauge steel tubing so it’s built to last. Finally, it has a built in pull-up bar.
Unless you’re looking to spend considerably more, this piece from Deltech is a pretty decent option.
A flat bench is also a nice piece of equipment if you’ve go the floorspace and room in your budget. But since it’s sort of a one-show pony, it doesn’t rank high on the list. I personally prefer pushups to bench press nowadays anyway. But if you’re set on getting a bench, you can’t go wrong with this Olympic bench from Body-Solid.
There is NO more efficient way to perform cardio than with rowing. And the hands down best is the Concept II Rower. This machine is a beast. It’s construction is top notch. And it is literally the perfect way to wear your ass out. The console on the rower allows for any number of configurations, including intervals such as Tabatas, or just rowing for time or distance.
The flywheel design makes it extremely quiet. And it can even be stowed on end to take up almost zero space. If you’re going to spend your money on a piece of cardio equipment, this is the one you want.
If you’ve still got room in your garage and room left in your budget here are a few other items you might want to explore. First and foremost would be some floor mats. Olympic lifting involves dropping a lot of weights. Mats will extend the life of your weights, and your floor.
Dumbbells and kettlebells are also an option. Certainly not as important as the equipment previously listed, but they have their place.
Olympic rings offer cheap thrills and are probably one of the best methods available of attaining massive upper body strength. We’ve covered some nice CrossFit rings in a previous post.
Last but not least, make sure you’ve got proper footwear. CrossFit shoes offer good cushion and support with a minimal heel-to-toe drop encouraging proper form and technique during lifts. They are a worthwhile investment.
And remember, good CrossFit equipment packages start with the basics. Get the necessities first, then worry about the rest down the road.