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If you want to build a home gym but you’re not sure if you have enough space, I’m going to show you how you can create one with just 100 square feet.
Is it possible to build a 100 square foot home gym? It’s possible to build a 100 square foot home gym. We hired Camila Lyons, the co-founder and lead designer of ALVA Interior and Architecture, to create a floor plan for a 100 square foot home gym. You’ll need to pick just a few key pieces, but you can build a functional workout area with some careful planning.
In this article, I’ll talk about:
- The 100 square foot floor plans our architect created
- What you can and cannot fit into a 100 square foot home gym
- How to customize your home gym based on your training goals
- Exercises you can do in a 100 square foot home gym
100 Square Foot Home Gym Floor Plan
Below are the floor plans our architect designed for a 100 square foot home gym. This theoretical home gym is for individuals with strength-based goals, but you can also build a home gym in this size room if your goals are more endurance-based.
Here is a 2D version of the 100 square foot home gym:
Below is a 3D overhead look at the floor plan:
Here is how the room looks when viewed from an angle:
And here are two views of the floor plan from the front of the room:
Check out our complete guide to Small Home Gym Layouts.
What Can Fit Into A 100 Square Foot Home Gym?
While 100 square feet is a small space, you can still fit a few essential pieces of equipment.
Based on the floor plans above, the following pieces of equipment can fit in a 100 square foot home gym:
- A squat stand
- A bench
- A punching bag
- A gymnastics ladder or wall-mounted pullup bar
- Wall-mounted storage posts for items such as bands, belts, and jump ropes
What CANNOT Fit Into A 100 Square Foot Home Gym?
As you can tell from the floor plans above, you’ll need to stick with the basics when building a home gym in a small space. As such, the following items won’t fit in a 100 square foot home gym:
- Most cardio machines
- Bodybuilding machines
- A full power rack
- A lifting platform
Extras & Substitutions Based On Your Goals
Powerlifters will have just enough room in a 100 square foot home gym for a squat stand, bench, barbell, plates, and a few dumbbells. You won’t be able to fit a full power cage, however. If safety is a concern, you’ll have to look for a squat stand that you can attach spotter arms to.
Since squat stands don’t have pullup bars, you’ll also need to purchase a wall-mounted pullup bar or door-mounted pullup bar.
CrossFitters will need to maximize every inch of space in a 100 square foot home gym so you can do a WOD without your equipment getting in the way.
For that reason, I recommend that you stick to just a few basics: a barbell, plates, a few pairs of dumbbells, and one or two kettlebells. You may also want to consider a medicine ball for wall balls and a jump rope for double unders, and you’ll need a squat stand in order to work on back squats, front squats, overhead presses, and jerks from the rack.
Even though CrossFitters are notorious for not bench pressing enough, I’d also recommend a bench if you do strength training outside of your daily WODs. Plus, bench presses do occasionally show up in WODs like Linda.
A Concept 2 rower won’t fit in a 100 square foot home gym. Due to its length, you won’t have enough space to leave it out during a WOD and also have room for other movements such as thrusters, power cleans, or double unders.
However, if you want to add a piece of conditioning equipment to your home gym, you may want to consider a ski erg or Echo bike, both of which have smaller footprints.
For weightlifters, a squat stand, a barbell, and plates will comfortably fit in a 100 square foot home gym. You can also fit a few pairs of dumbbells if you need them for accessory movements as well as a set of jerk blocks.
Since most weightlifting platforms are 8’x8’, you won’t be able to fit one in a small home gym. It wouldn’t leave you much space to walk around, and it may partially block the door or entryway to your gym space.
You can protect your floors by lining the room with a few sheets of layered ¾ inch-thick plywood and securing them with 1.25” screws and liquid nails. You can place horse stall mats on top of the plywood, which will help absorb the shock and vibrations from dropped weights.
4. General fitness
If you train for general health purposes, you may want to consider getting a set of adjustable dumbbells, a bench, and a treadmill, spin bike, or elliptical machine. There won’t be enough space in a 100 square foot room to fit multiple pieces of cardio equipment in addition to a squat stand.
If you do want a squat stand as well as a cardio machine, I’d stick with a spin bike since it won’t take up as much space as a treadmill or elliptical.
Training for bodybuilding is a bit more difficult in a small home gym since you can’t fit a lot of isolation machines. Even if you get a multi-purpose machine that allows you to train both upper and lower body, it will still take up a lot of space in your home gym, and you won’t have room for any other equipment.
You can still develop a well-rounded physique just by training with free weights, but if you compete in bodybuilding, you may want to keep your gym membership so you can use machines at the gym and use your home gym for supplemental training.
Equipment For A 100 Square Foot Gym
Must-Haves for a 100 Square Foot Home Gym
The eight must-have pieces of equipment for a 100 square foot home gym are:
- A squat rack
- A bench
- A barbell
- Resistance bands
- A jump rope
1. A Squat Rack
For a 100 square foot home gym, I recommend a squat stand instead of a power cage or a foldable squat rack like the PRx Performance Profile Squat Rack. When it’s fully extended, it only comes out 4 inches from the wall, so it still takes up less space than a freestanding power cage. The only drawback is that your ceilings need to be at least 95”.
For a squat stand, I recommend the Rogue SML-1 70” Monster Lite Squat Stand. It’s made out of 11-gauge steel and has a 1,000lb weight capacity, which is more than enough for most home gym users. You can also get a separate wheel bracket for it so you can move it around your home gym with ease.
2. A Bench
Whether you get a flat bench or incline bench depends on what kind of bench presses you like to incorporate into your routine. I like having an incline bench because it’s more versatile, but it really just comes down to personal preference.
For an incline bench, I recommend the Fringe Sport adjustable bench. It has a weight capacity of 1,000lbs and can be adjusted to seven different positions. It also has wheels so you can easily move it around your home gym if it gets in the way.
For a flat bench, I recommend the flat bench from Fringe Sport. It has an 800lb weight capacity and is built with a 12” wide foam pad. The base is wide and stable so the bench won’t wobble when you’re doing bench presses, and the rubber foot pads help prevent it from sliding.
For most home gyms, a bar such as the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is a good choice. You can use it for most barbell movements, including squats, bench presses, deadlifts, overhead presses, and rows.
CrossFitters and weightlifters should look for a bar with more whip, which makes it easier to perform snatches and clean and jerks. I recommend the Rogue Bella Bar 2.0 for females and the Olympic WL bar for males.
The Bella Bar weighs 15kg and has a 25mm diameter, which makes it easier for females with small hands to use the hook grip. The Olympic WL bar weighs 20kg and has a 28mm diameter. Even though they’re both designed to be used for the Olympic lifts, you can still use them for the three main powerlifting movements.
Although there are different kinds of plates, I generally recommend bumper plates for home gyms. They’re less noisy and tend to do less damage to your floors. They’re also necessary for CrossFitters who do a lot of high-rep touch-and-go movements and weightlifters who drop weights from overhead.
I like the Rogue HG 2.0 Bumper Plates because of their high-quality construction and durability. I’ve had mine for about four years and there’s still no significant damage to them. I also like that the weights are accurate to within 1%, so you’ll always know exactly how much you’re lifting.
When it comes to buying dumbbells for a 100 square foot home gym, you’ll have to get just a few pairs or get a set of adjustable dumbbells so you have space for other items.
I think hex dumbbells over round dumbbells are ideal for most types of training because you can lay them on the floor and not worry about them rolling, and it’s easier to do movements such as renegade rows with them.
I recommend the rubber hex dumbbells from Titan Fitness. They’re durable, reasonably priced, and available in weight increments from 5-100lbs. They also have a knurled ergonomic handle that prevents your hands from slipping.
If you want adjustable dumbbells, I recommend PowerBlock dumbbells. I have these in my garage gym and I love how convenient they are. It’s easy to change weights for different movements in the middle of a workout, and I’ve never been concerned about them breaking.
Even though the floor plans above didn’t include kettlebells, you can still fit one or two in a 100 square foot home gym. You can just leave them on the floor in a corner of the room instead of getting a storage rack that will take up a lot of space.
For home gym use, I recommend the Rogue Kettlebells. Made out of iron ore and cast in one solid piece, they’re extremely durable. They also have a black matte finish that provides a lot of texture and makes the handle easy to grip even if your hands are sweaty.
7. Resistance Bands
Resistance bands are versatile tools that you can use as a substitute for many movements in a small home gym. For example, I like to use mine for banded hamstring curls and banded lat pushdowns.
For an inexpensive but high-quality set of resistance bands, I recommend the WODfitters resistance bands. Mine have lasted for several years and I haven’t yet had to replace any of them. I like having the set because I use different colored bands for different purposes, but you can also buy them individually.
8. A Jump Rope
A jump rope is a good tool for small home gyms because they don’t take up any space, and you can use them for cardio workouts if you don’t have enough room for a treadmill, bike, or elliptical. CrossFitters, in particular, should have one since a lot of WODs include double unders.
The WOD Nation Speed Rope is a good all-around jump rope that can be used by CrossFitters and non-CrossFitters alike. It’s affordable, comes in a variety of colors, and it comes with two different cables that you can swap out depending on your proficiency with jumping rope.
Optional Equipment for a 100 Square Foot Home Gym
Two pieces of optional equipment for a 100 square foot home gym are:
- A plyo box
- A medicine ball
1. A Plyo Box
Even though a plyo box isn’t essential, it is a great tool for practicing box jumps and improving explosive strength. It only requires a couple of feet of space, so even if you have a small home gym, you can find a way to store it.
I recommend the Rogue Foam Box since the foam padding will save your shins if you miss a box jump. This box has a dense foam core that’s wrapped in another layer of softer foam. It weighs 58lbs so it’s very sturdy and won’t tip over when you land on it. You can also flip it to change the height to either 20”, 24”, or 30”.
2. A Medicine Ball
I consider medicine balls as optional for most home gyms. There’s not much you can do with them that you can’t do with another piece of strength training equipment. But if you’re a CrossFitter, you may want to consider a medicine ball so you can do wall balls.
I recommend the Rogue medicine ball. It has a moisture- and scuff-resistant vinyl coating, and the seams on the heavier balls are double stitched to keep them from bursting. Unlike other medicine balls, the weight is evenly distributed so it won’t lose its shape over time.
What Exercises & Workouts Can You Do In A 100 Square Foot Gym?
Even with limited equipment in a 100 square foot home gym, you can still do a lot of exercises in the space, including:
- Bench presses
- Overhead presses
- Clean and jerks
- Isolation movements with free weights
- Bar muscle ups
- Some cardio
Other Gym Floor Plans
- 500 square foot home gym
- 400 square foot home gym
- 300 square foot home gym
- 250 square foot home gym
- 200 square foot home gym
- 150 square foot home gym
- 120 square foot home gym
The floor plans our architect created for a 100 square foot home gym should give you an idea of how you can build your own small home gym. You’ll have to stick with just a few key pieces of equipment, and what you decide to add to your home gym will depend on your goals, but it is possible to create a functional workout space even if you don’t have a lot of room.
About The Author
Amanda is a writer and editor in the fitness and nutrition industries. Growing up in a family that loved sports, she learned the importance of staying active from a young age. She started CrossFit in 2015, which led to her interest in powerlifting and weightlifting. She's passionate about helping women overcome their fear of lifting weights and teaching them how to fuel their bodies properly. When she's not training in her garage gym or working, you can find her drinking coffee, walking her dog, or indulging in one too many pieces of chocolate.