Gym equipment can seem daunting at first. Especially if you’re new to weight training. What equipment do I need? How do I use it right? What weight should I lift? There are three ways to find out the answers to these questions: 1. Ask the staff at your gym, 2. Ask the person training next to you, or 3. Read this article.
First, let’s introduce you to the list of equipment you will need in order to train with the Freeletics Weight Training Journeys. The good news is that you won’t need much equipment and almost everything can be found in the free weights area.
- Power racks with a pull-up bar and dip bar
- Weight belt
- Rowing machine
There are different kinds of barbells. Below are the most common ones you will find in almost every gym.
Olympic Weightlifting Bar
The men’s so-called Olympic Weightlifting Bar, used in standard men’s weightlifting competitions, weighs 20kg, or 45lb. While the women’s version weighs 15kg or 33lb. A powerlifting barbell weighs 25kg or 55lb. These bars are suitable for all workouts in your Freeletics app.
Weight: Usually 20kg / 45lb
Most Gyms also provide a shorter and less heavy version of this barbell, especially suitable for women who start training with lighter weights in the beginning.
Weight: Between 7kg and 15kg. Ask staff for the exact weight before you start using this.
This bar can be used for tricep extensions or barbell curls.
Weight: Between 7,5kg and 10kg. Ask staff of your local Gym before you start using this.
This bar should not be used for Freeletics workouts.
The so-called standard barbells, ironically, do not come in standard weights; if your gym uses standard weights ask the staff how much the barbells weigh first.
General note: For safety reasons always use the weight stoppers. Sometimes one side of your body can push a bit harder, making the bar become uneven and causing the weights to slide off the end. Be safe and secure the weight with stoppers.
If you cannot find the right barbell, you can also train with plates only.
In most gyms you will find the following plates that are necessary to perform Freeletics weights workouts. Olympic plates range from 0.5kg (1.1lb), to 30kg (66lb). Powerlifting plates begin at 0.25kg (0.55lb), and go up to 25kg (55lb). Standard weight plates come in a variety of weights. The weight of the plate – for Olympic, powerlifting and standard weights – will be displayed on the side of the plate in kilograms, pounds or both. To convert kilograms into pounds simply multiply by 2.2.
Please note that the weight suggestions given to you always include the bar.
Figuring out which weight to lift can be a challenge at first. But don’t worry, over time this calculating this will become a routine.
How to calculate the weights
Calculating the weight of your barbell and weights is a matter of basic arithmetic. The total weight includes the weight of the barbell and the weight of the plates. That is, if the suggested weight in the app is e.g. 50kg, you first have to deduct the weight of the barbell (e.g. 20kg, you can ask the staff if you’re not sure about the weight of the barbell) and then split the remaining weight (i.e. 30kg in this case) up into two parts to get the weight of each plate (i.e. 15kg per plate, the weight of the plate is written on the plate).
There are three kinds of racks typically found in gyms that can be used with Freeletics Gym app. Ideally, the rack includes a dip and a pull-up bar attachment. If you set the bar up to perform back squats or front squats it should be positioned at the midpoint between the top and the bottom of your sternum.
Note: The main function of a rack is safety. For this reason, you should always use the safety bars. Adjust them, so they are just a bit below the bar during your deepest squat position.
For certain exercises, you will require a bench.
If your gym does not have a dedicated weight belt it may instead have a chain with a karabiner. If this is also not available, just position the weight (plate or dumbbell) you need between your legs and squeeze your legs together to hold it in place.