Workout Haven: A Gym in Your Basement
If working out is your favorite free time activity, then at some point you have probably wished to be alone in the gym. Don’t get us wrong, there is nothing wrong with exercising alongside other people but there are all kinds of weirdos. Some stare impolitely, while others do not use towels or fail to wipe the machine after use. Sometimes the music at the gym is either too loud or inappropriate and let’s not get started about the times when it is simply too crowded to work out normally. Since waiting in line for ten minutes to do 15 pull-ups is nobody’s wish, a home gym seems like a reasonable solution. However, a house is made for living, not working out, so the gym will have to go below ground, into the basement. If you are wondering how exactly you can create a workout haven in your basement, here are a few useful tips that include an estimated cost.
The ideal size
As we said, the basement is the ideal room for installing a gym and that is why most homeowners delegate this room for the home fitness studio. The basement does come with some issues of its own. For starters, many subterranean spaces are low in height, so a low ceiling could shatter your dream of a home gym before it has even begun. Even if the ceiling is set low, you can buy smaller machines but this means that the number of exercises you can perform (down) there becomes limited.
Furthermore, you have to decide whether to turn the entire basement into a gym or only parts of it. You always have the option to tear down a wall or two but first make sure that they are not the support columns, as this could jeopardize the structural integrity of your house. You can even erect temporary walls to divide the gym from the rest of the basement.
Design features to include
Presuming that you are not going to exercise surrounded by four bare walls, you are going to need some design features to make the whole space look more humane. You can start by installing a sound system, doing away with the need for headphones. A single hole can be drilled to connect the basement with your home entertainment system or you can make good use of the Wi-Fi connection. If you fancy a good distraction while jogging on the treadmill, then you can even hang a plasma TV on the wall.
Like in a commercial gym, there should be floor-to-ceiling mirrors in several places. Besides from looking at your body figure, the mirrors will enhance the light in the room and make it appear bigger. Finally, you could throw a small fridge inside to keep the smoothies and water bottles cool at all times.
No matter how useful the pieces of advice we provide here prove to be, some people are just not that good at furnishing and design. For them, it would be ideal if they could just pick up the phone and have their huge basement fitted out for them, and why not, for their friends, too! Believe it or not, but companies that do commercial fitouts, like Impecca Build include home renovation in their offer. Such a project is midway between a commercial and a home renovation because it includes segments of both.
Apart from having as much as possible natural light, a basement gym should have plenty of fresh air. The thing is you need fresh air while exercising, because it has numerous health benefits as your muscles need oxygen to function properly. That is why working out in a stuffy room full of mold and mildew is not an option. If an open window is not enough, be sure to install some kind of a ventilation system, even a makeshift one, into the basement so you will inhale fresh air at all times. Even a simple ceiling fan can make a huge difference in air quality during summer months.
Most basements have concrete floors which make the best surface for installing gym machines. It makes their installation easy because they can be bolted down to the floor for stability purposes. Of course, once the machines are in place, you are not going to leave the floors bare, as they will crumble over time, making them dangerous to tread on. Rugs and carpets will do the trick but the best flooring option that will make your gym look more professional, are rubber tiles. They can be purchased at a DIY center as their versions are used in kindergartens as suitable surfaces for children to play on. Rubber tiles are both sturdy enough to support any weight and soft enough to soften any impact, like the one from a falling dumbbell.
Finally, the issue of price rears its ugly head. Well, if you apply most of the solution we listed, the total cost for a home gym will range from $3000 to $6000, depending on the number of machines you install.
Sarah Jessica Smith is a guest blogger from Sydney.