Stretching $1,000 will allow you to prioritize serious strength, explosiveness, and recovery—and all these items are also a lot of fun.
Powerblock adjustable dumbbells
Adjustable bells transform a spartan home setup into an honest-to-goodness permanent gym. These Powerblocks go up to 90 pounds, which will get most people most of the way. This Reddit dumbbell routine is a good place to start.
Rogue Post Landmine and Rogue Echo bar
Landmines require a barbell and offer explosive workouts that target the posterior chain without stressing the spine. They don’t fit into apartments, unless they’re Liberace-sized places, but they’re perfect for a backyard or a garage. Check this account for exercises; start with the corkscrew switch, then go from there.
Baseblocks big bar
Muscling up—achieving a pull-up, then raising your waist to the bar—is the Occam’s Razor of strength: If you can do one, you’re probably mobile, lean and strong enough to do anything else. This bar is stable, doesn’t require super high ceilings and folds away after use. If you can’t yet reach a muscle-up, build up to nailing 20 pull-ups and 20 dips in a row, then, try out this YouTube routine.
There are infinite options for spending correctly if you’re dropping $5,000, but the priority here is creating a more organic and demanding conception of strength than it is about real heavy weights.
Rogue Abram glute ham developer
Glute-ham developers isolate the posterior chain while leaving the spine alone; they should come standard in every gym in America. But they don’t. If you feel like becoming bulletproof, buy this thing then charge admission for your friends to come use it.
The fan in a good fan bike adds resistance the harder you pedal, which pushes workouts past cardio into hybridized strength training. There are more workouts with this thing than you might think, though sprints—one minute on, one minute off—are the best place to start.
Rep Fitness push-pull sled and two 45-pound bumper plates
Prowler pushes are elite recovery: an easy 40-yard push with 90 lb. attached will, over time, just about do everything. They require more space than a landmine—at least a driveway, most likely a road—and are not found at most commercial gyms.
Titan Fitness T-3 series tall squat stand
Lots of people like barbell squatting; I’m only a fan of the exercise if the lifter is coordinated and strong enough to do it safely. But if you’re building a home gym, why not? This squat stand is the simplest, best option. Use your landmine barbell and prowler weights, and work up to a heavy single at the end of your workouts.
Assault Runner Pro manual treadmill
Gait—how we walk—is a hot fitness buzzword, with good reason: if we walk funky then everything else we do probably is. Manual treadmills are great tools for assessing our movement—but what’s more, they offer a very enveloping workout. Running—and staying balanced—on one is qualitatively different than anything else at the gym.
Functional Patterns 10 week course
Not exactly a gadget, but Functional Patterns’ introductory course is a worthy home workout investment for someone who might feel too sore or too stiff to begin working out with heavy weights. It’s hard to explain what they do—but it’s mostly knocking out gunk in the body at first, then re-tooling it, then making it stronger, without much equipment.