Squeezing in a quick workout at home is a great way to stay consistent on your fitness journey. However, not everyone has enough space to dedicate to a home gym.
That's why we decided to create a list of our top picks for the best compact exercise equipment to help you make the most of your home workouts without taking up too much space.
To make our guide easy to follow we have split the equipment into 2 main categories, cardio and strength equipment. So whether you are looking to lose a few extra pounds or do resistance training, we have something to suit everyone.
At A Glance
Compact Exercise Bike - NordicTrack S22i
Compact Treadmill - WalkingPad X21
Compact Rowing Machine - Concept2 Model D
Suspension Trainer - TRX All-in-One Suspension Trainer
Adjustable Dumbbells - BrainGain 32kg Adjustable Dumbbells
Pull-Up Bar - Hakeno Doorway Pull-Up Bar
Workout Mirror - NordicTrack Vault
Overall Best Type of Compact Exercise Equipment
For anyone looking for what types of equipment tend to be compact, we feel there are two main options when it comes to cardio equipment.
Firstly, folding exercise bikes are generally the lightest and smallest when folded, but there is a trade-off as they tend to have low resistance but can still deliver a cardiovascular workout.
Our other choice would be a walking pad, slightly heavier but still foldable they can generally reach speeds of up to 6kph, ideal for a quick walking pace that will get you sweating.
But if you are interested in strength training, then it is hard to beat a suspension trainer like the ones from TRX as they can be easily packed away into a bag when not being used and can target the whole body with a variety of exercises.
But we understand that these options might not suit everyone's training goals so we have broken down more options below that are compact but effective training tools.
Best Compact Cardio Equipment
Compact Exercise Bike
Exercise bikes are one of the most compact forms of cardio equipment available which make them a popular choice if you are short on space.
They also tend to be quite easy to move and some models can be folded to save even more space. But the foldable models generally have small flywheels which means they can’t generate as much resistance.
So we recommend going for a slightly bigger spin bike if possible to get the best workout in the space used.
Overall, the Nordictrack S22i is our top choice for an exercise bike as it can deliver a great workout thanks to the iFit workout app which has a wide range of cycling workouts, from studio classes to cycling through scenic destinations to picking your own route. But it also gives you access to extra classes such as yoga, strength training, meditation and more.
The 13kg flywheel produces plenty of resistance to challenge for an intense workout but also is silent thanks to NordicTrack's Silent Magnetic Resistance system. Although the downside of a high-quality bike like this is that the bike is heavy weighing in at 91 kg, it does have transport wheels which make it easier to move.
So if you want an immersive cycling workout and have the available space then we highly recommend the NordicTrack S22i. You can see a more in-depth look at the bike in our Nordictrack S22i review.
But if you don’t have the budget for the S22i and need something that can fold, then the AtivaFit Foldable exercise bike is a good choice and currently the best-selling model in the UK on Amazon. Just don’t expect the same level of workout intensity that you get from a bike like the S22i.
Compact Rowing Machine
The Concept 2 Model D rowing machine is renowned as the world's top-selling rower and for good reason. It is built to commercial specifications and can often be found in commercial gyms.
Priced at about £1000, it isn’t the cheapest option on the market but is the best value for money, especially when comparing the cost to commercial spec treadmills, which can easily exceed £3000.
But despite its commercial specs, it is foldable which makes perfect for a home gym that is short on space. Plus, it comes with Concept2’s PM5 performance monitor which offers precise feedback and advanced functionalities in addition to all the standard metrics you would expect.
Although the air resistance mechanism can be somewhat noisy, it provides plenty of resistance for even the most demanding of high-intensity workouts. Or the resistance can be reduced by sliding the dampener for a lighter session.
So if you want a compact rower that can deliver a challenging workout without taking up too much space then it is hard to find anything better than the Concept2 Model D.
But if you are on a tighter budget, then we recommend you check out the JTX Ignite rower which looks very similar at first glance, but just doesn’t have quite as advanced a console. But still delivers a good workout and is built to commercial specifications.
WalkingPad started with a goal to make exercise accessible by making good quality treadmills suitable for home use.
So they worked hard to create a range of foldable machines and the X21 is a great example of a compact treadmill that takes up a minimal amount of space.
It has a unique double-folding design which minimises the footprint to just 100cm (H) x 71cm (W) x 22.5cm (D) when stored vertically, making it the most space-efficient treadmill we've found.
But it is still able to reach a top speed of 12kph which is a brisk jog and considering the foldable design, it has a surprisingly long running deck at 1210mm long.
Plus, it comes with a sleek LED display built into the front rail which is easy to see as you workout.
Another benefit to the double-folding design is that it comes almost fully assembled. You just need to plug it in and it is ready to be used.
If you are looking for a compact, stylish, and effective treadmill, then the WalkingPad X21 is an outstanding choice.
Compact Cross Trainer
When it comes to cross trainers, they are generally quite large and take up a lot of space, even when the flywheel is mounted on the front.
But this is where the ProForm Hiit L6 stands out as a compact alternative to traditional cross trainers, offering an effective workout in a smaller footprint.
The elliptical movement is more vertical than horizontal but is still low impact and also has moving arms to help engage your upper body.
It also comes with a 6" built-in screen for interactive workouts via iFit, helping to keep your workouts interesting and efficient.
While it includes a 30-day free iFit trial, you will need to pay a monthly subscription to continue using it once it has run out.
But you can still use the hiit L6 without iFit but will be limited to manual mode.
So, although some people will argue it isn't your standard cross trainer we feel this is the best of both worlds if you are limited on space and need a compact option.
Vertical climbers are a cardio option that not many people have seen or had the chance to use but they are a great compact cardio option worth considering. Especially as they can burn between 600 to 800 calories an hour.
And when it comes to vertical climbers it is hard to choose anything other than the MaxiClimber.
It simulates climbing a ladder non-stop which can be very challenging, but the vertical nature of the movements means the machine has a small footprint of 25.4cm (L) x 15.2cm (W) but is quite tall at 144.8cm (H) and can’t be folded for easy storage.
But if you have a corner of your garage that you can dedicate to cardio, then the MaxiClimber is worth considering especially as it only costs a little over £100. So it is hard to beat in terms of workout intensity to price.
Best Compact Strength Equipment
Resistance bands are possibly the most compact strength training tools available. They are lightweight, cost-effective, portable and easy to store.
Due to their simple design, many brands have produced resistance band sets, but one of the best sellers in the UK is a set by FitBeast.
They offer sets from 4 to 6 bands offering resistance from 2.5kg to an impressive 90kg. You can also get a door anchor to attach the bands to the door to perform exercises from different angles.
Although these bands are very simple, they can be used to target every major muscle group.
But if you have allergies, be careful as the bands are made from latex.
So if you want a cost-effective and compact option for strength training then resistance bands are worth considering.
If you’ve visited a commercial gym in the past 20 years, you might be familiar with TRX classes that offer bodyweight workouts.
Suspension trainers gained popularity for their simplicity and effectiveness. They are very user-friendly and can be adjusted to match any fitness level, allowing both beginners and seasoned athletes to adjust the exercises to their desired intensity.
The equipment is straightforward, made of just a few straps and handles, making them affordable and perfect for home use. Especially with the additional door anchors, you can use them on any suitable door.
TRX are the brand that originally came up with the suspension training system and is still our top recommendation for a suspension training set. Their products are good quality and durable and will last for years to come.
For home-based free weight training, adjustable dumbbells are hands down our number one choice as you get the versatility of an entire rack of dumbbells condensed into one pair.
Our top pick in this category is BrainGain, which is a UK-based company known for its wide range of models catering to different strength levels and preferences.
We particularly like the 32kg round model that can be adjusted in 2kg increments starting from 2kg. This means you essentially have 16 pairs of dumbbells in one compact, space-saving pair.
They conveniently rest in their weight tray, ensuring they occupy minimal space in your workout area, making BrainGain adjustable dumbbells a superb choice for compact strength training.
Plus, BrainGain has great customer service which adds extra peace of mind to your investment.
Following on from dumbbells we have also included adjustable kettlebells for users who enjoy functional, full-body workouts.
We have stuck with BrainGain as they are a trustworthy UK-based company that produces good quality but affordable equipment. We always try to support UK businesses whenever possible.
They have two options available, a 9kg and 18kg models, we particularly like the 18kg version as it gives you the option to go heavier as your strength increases. In terms of weight adjustments, you can choose from 7 different weights which are 4kg, 6kg, 8kg, 11kg, 13kg, 16kg, and 18kg.
So if you enjoy kettlebell workouts but don’t want to buy 7 different weights, then the BrainGain kettlebell is an excellent investment.
Pull Up Bar
When looking to build a strong back, pull-ups are a must-do exercise which makes the Hakeno doorway pull-up bar a good choice.
It can be mounted in doorways from 33” to 36” wide and can be fitted in seconds as you simply hang it off your door frame. Plus, when you have finished your workout it can be folded flat making it easy to put away while you aren’t working out.
Although the maximum weight capacity is listed as 226kg, we recommend you don’t go that heavy as it will depend on your doorframe.
The reason we like the Hakeno model over some of the other options is that it comes with an anchor hoop and a suspension trainer set included. So you can perform a variety of other exercises with this one piece of equipment.
Compact Weight Bench
For anyone wanting to perform free weight workouts, then a folding weight bench such as this one from FlyBird is a great extra.
This top-seller in the UK is great for anyone short on space as it can be easily folded away and stored in a closet.
It offers 6 backrests and 4 seat positions so you can perform a variety of exercises to target specific muscle groups. Although its decline angle is pretty steep, it's still good for core workouts, especially with the foot anchor for added support.
When folded, it is 80cm (L) x 32cm (W) x 30cm (H) and lightweight at 10kg. Combined with a reasonable price tag of about £100 it is a compact and affordable bench option.
If you want to build strength with barbell exercises but don’t have space for a power rack, the Yaheetech Adjustable Squat Rack is an alternative option that will help keep you safe.
These squat stands are easily movable, making them easy to pack away in between workouts. Although they aren’t as stable as a full squat rack, they provide a safe way to load a barbell and get under the barbell.
The uprights can be height-adjusted so you can use them for a range of exercises from bench press to standing squats.
Although they come with small spotting arms for safety, relying on good bumper plates or protective flooring might be a better choice as the stands can tip over if pushed too hard.
In recent years we have seen several new workout mirrors arriving on the market and we expect more to arrive as their popularity continues to grow.
Out of the options available in the UK right now, the NordicTrack Vault is our top pick. Its slim modern design looks great and comes with everything you need, including dumbbells, kettlebells, resistance bands, yoga blocks and a yoga mat.
Plus, with the free iFit trial you get to follow along to professional trainers that will guide you through a range of workouts. From strength training to high-intensity interval training, iFit has workouts to suit a wide range of goals.
Then once you are sore, you can follow along to a Yoga class to improve your recovery and flexibility.
Although there is the extra cost of the iFit subscription to consider, we feel the extra cost is well worth it for engaging workouts that will help keep you motivated and on track.
Once you finish your workout, all the equipment fits neatly inside the vault and leaves a clean clutter-free space.
So if you want guided full-body workouts from home, then the NordicTrack Vault will be a great training partner.
We hope our list of compact exercise equipment has helped you find the right equipment for your training style and available space. No matter how much space you have available it is possible to have an effective workout from home.
Whether you want to get stronger, leaner or just a bit healthier, we have you covered with our top picks.
Why Trust Us
At Home Gym Supply, our goal is to help people create the perfect home gym for their needs and goals. To help us make the right recommendations we get the unique opportunity to test out a wide range of gym equipment but also see how it performs in real-world conditions with feedback from customers.
We have gained a wealth of experience over the years and often get asked for feedback from manufacturers to help them improve their products.
Plus, to help us stay up to date with the latest news and releases we regularly attend events like FIBOthe expo where manufacturers show off their latest releases and allow us to interact with the companies.
We have used our knowledge to hand-pick this list of compact gym equipment and hope it will help our readers create an effective workout space to help them on their fitness journey.