Top 7 Best Fitness Machines at the Gym


APRIL, 2022

You will find a selection of fitness machines at your local gym—which one will be your favourite? We think these are the best fitness machines, but you should try any and all of them out and see what works for you.


What Are the Best Fitness Machines at the Gym?

Your local gym probably has a whole selection of ace workout equipment to choose from. Don’t know where to start? Let’s do some research.

First thing to remember: It’s okay to pick a favorite!  Even elite athletes find that they prefer some machines over others. Everyone’s opinion of the best fitness machines is subjective. So, when it comes to choosing the right exercise machines, several elements will come into play.

Your personal fitness level, gym experience, desired results, and athletic preferences will all factor into which machines are the best for your workout, as well as which you most enjoy.

Once you have determined which type of workout machine best suits you, there’s still some research to be done.

Not all fitness machines are created equal, and you probably would prefer to work out on a modern, well-constructed piece of equipment rather than something ancient or flimsy.

After realizing your ideal workout platform, whether it is cycling, lifting, or running, take some time to research the popular makes and versions, and then find a gym that offers them. Likely, their other workout machines will be of a similar caliber—win-win!

The Basics: What Are Some Classic Fitness Machines?

Trying to sort out the best fitness machines for your next gym sesh? There are heaps of options for you to choose from. Here, you can read about some of the most popular fitness machines available at the gym.

You may find that you do not only pick one as a favorite, but several—after all, each machine has its own merits and works different muscle groups and body parts.


1. Climbing Machines

Are you an avid climber? On the days where you can’t hit the crag, you can still get your climbing action in at the gym. Climbing machines are a workout staple at gyms across the world! This type of vertical machinery has been built and designed to imitate the movements you would make while scaling a cliff. This offers a full-body workout, and is a great form of cardio.

There are some excellent makes out there, like our long-standing favorite, the Versa Climber. We know athletes who have been singing the praises of VersaClimber workouts for 30 years!

climbing machine

2. Treadmills

Treadmills are a fantastic example of effective gym machines for beginners and pros. They are a great tool for warming up or cooling down, and can also be used as a short cardio routine. These machines have been a popular gym staple for decades, and we don’t think they will go out of style any time soon.

If you are lucky, you can visit a gym with Woodway treadmills. This piece of high-end machinery promotes great form, burns more calories than classic running machines, and has the unique ability to work with your pace.

3. Workout Bikes

Stationary workout bikes are a classic piece of gym equipment and offer a fantastic low-impact, lower-body workout. They are an excellent form of cardio, to boot!

If you are looking for an especially exciting version of an exercise bike, we have the answer for you. These days, lots of gyms also offer air bikes due to their rising popularity  in athletic circles, especially CrossFit enthusiasts. While they look very similar to your standard fixed workout bike, air bikes have moving handlebars, which help offer a full-body workout that is part cycling, part elliptical training.

stationary bike

4. Ellipticals

Speaking of elliptical training, we think this piece of machinery is one of the greatest of all time! For years, athletes have climbed aboard the elliptical for a low-impact, high-results training session.

It is a great piece of equipment for anybody seeking a cardio workout, it trains both your lower and upper body, and even beginners find it easy to use.

5. Weight Machines

Looking to lift? If you are planning to build strength through weightlifting, you will have plenty of options at your local gym. At most fitness centers, you will find a selection of weights.

Some gyms offer a variety of free weights, which can include dumbbell racks, kettlebells, barbells, resistance bags, medicine balls, and sandbags. You can move these weights around as you like.

Other gyms offer dedicated weight machines, which are large, stationary, and offer the opportunity to train specific muscles.

Generally, these machines have stacked weights which can be customized according to your fitness level and needs. Some classic weight machines include the overhead press, lat pull, and leg curl.

best weight machine

6. Rowing Machines

Whether you were on the crew team at school or you have just heard it’s a killer workout, you will get great results from a rowing machine.

This classic piece of gym equipment remains a stalwart for a reason—while the rowing machine seems simple, it actually uses 86% of your muscles!

As you mimic the actions of rowing a boat, you will end up training your obliques, abs, quads, glutes, arms, calves, pecs, and upper back.

Phew! Plus, did we mention that this full-body workout is also a low-impact option? No wonder it’s a favorite amongst elite athletes and newbies alike.

7. Skiing Machines

Dreaming of hitting the slopes, but can’t leave town? No worries—just rock up to your local gym and hit the skiing machine.

While the ski machine can’t recreate the clear skies and snowy goodness of the real thing, it can absolutely provide the same athletic advantages. In fact, it was originally developed as a training tool for skiers themselves!

We love that it offers a full-body workout, as well as how accessible it is; a skiing machine can be used from a seated position, making it a favorite training tool for athletes who use a wheelchair.

Found a potential new favorite among these? Time to put it into action—happy training!

Written by Vic

Melbourne-based Personal Trainer, Calisthenics Athlete and the Founder of Street Workout St Kilda. Super passionate about bodyweight training and the art of movement.
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