Dec 6, 2022
Matt & Niki explore helpful strength equipment that helps you
solve problems, make strength training more fun, and build your
home gym. They share specific pieces of equipment and for whom this
gear might help the most. This isn't equipment to get started
or gear 101
, but rather equipment and gear for those who are
continuing on the path of strength and voluntary hardship.
Helpful Strength Equipment
You need a few items to begin strength training properly,
though you can also start exercising today.
As you progress and build the habit of strength training (and
simultaneously get older) some equipment can help solve common
problems you will likely encounter.
Some of these items help add variety and make training more
Other gear helps deal with common injuries or pain points.
Regardless, this list of items can help you build compliance
and improve your training. If you use it, it is ultimately an
investment in yourself and your health.
Accessories for Accessory Work
repetitive if all you have is a barbell. A few pieces of equipment
can multiply the potential hypertrophy and accessory work you can
Adjustable dumbbells allow you to add dumbbell variations and
accessory lifts without taking up a ton of space (and saving money
compared to a full set of dumbbells).
Not only can you perform dumbbell variations of the main
lifts, you can also perform more accessory work that you simply
cannot perform with barbells (e.g. dumbbell flies or lateral
A similar example of helpful strength equipment is a pulley
system. This enables lat pull downs as well as using the pulley
system for hypertrophy work (triceps, biceps, etc.).
The last helpful items that focuses primarily on the upper
body is getting a dip attachment to your power rack or an
adjustable bench. They allow variation for pressing movements, and
you can also perform accessory lifts on the bench.
Enabling lower body accessory work comes in handy as you
become more advanced, as deadlifts and squats don't only get
repetitive but if you face a big injury, you might not be able to
perform one or both of these lifts for awhile.
Some helpful strength equipment for this area are a reverse
hyper, glute ham raise, or leg extension/leg curl attachment. Some
of these take up a lot of space, but getting just one of them can
provide additional leg stress and make a big difference in your
lower body training.
Supplying Supplemental Lifts
This might be the widest area, as we're talking about
different types of barbells and other items that can modify the main lifts
A deadlift bar can really help your deadlift 1RM, as it has a
smaller diameter and more whip (which reduces the range of motion).
An axle bar for the press or bench press reduces your ability to
grip the bar but enables good pressing variants. It is also
necessary if you're considering Strong Man training.
Getting a slingshot or board attachment can help overload the
bench and work on the top portion of your bench. The slingshot can
also help if you have shoulder pain.
The safety squat bar
football bar (and variations of both) not only add supplemental
variations to the lifts but can also prevent pain for the shoulders
and wrists specifically.
Convenience & Climate
The last area of helpful strength equipment includes items
that add convenience to your lifting or improve the atmosphere of
The monolift attachment allows you to not have to take a step
bar or move the bar from the pins to the shoulders on the bench. It
provides the most benefit to the most people for the bench press,
as many find it reduces or eliminates shoulder pain. Niki also uses
it for the RDL.
A deadlift jack makes loading and unloading plates easier for
any lift that has the barbell on the ground, especially the
A 1-arm deadlift jack is smaller and more mobile - you can put
it in your gym bag. A 2-arm deadlift jack makes more sense if you
have a decent amount of space in your home gym or for public
Ammonia or smelling salts help bring focus and intensity to
A timer or watch can ensure that you don't waste time in the
gym between sets and make the rest time consistent. This is
especially important at a public gym or if you're a coach, because
the lifter isn't paying you to tell them stories.
Last but probably not least for most people is something to
help with climate control, specifically heating or cooling your
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