Each week Mansion Global tackles an interior design topic with an elite group of designers from around the world who work on luxury properties. This week we look at how to design a chic home gym.
Having an exercise facility right in the comfort of home is not only incredibly convenient, but it also enables you to work out in privacy—and not to mention have your equipment all to yourself.
And when it’s yours, you can design and customize it exactly the way you see fit, so maybe you’ll be even more motivated to use it. For ideas on layout and flow, follow our tips from the design pros.
Make It Feel Inviting
“I like the gym to be a non-sterile place to work out and hang. We use either laminated or hardwood flooring for non-weightlifting areas. I like to add insets of patterns for weight areas in thick padded rubber flooring. This way it feels more like home. If you have space, add a sitting space with area rugs. Section out the weight area under padded flooring to give the room some dimension, and add extra-large mirrors on the walls.
"Ceiling-mounted modern lighting is really fun, and a few pendant lights hanging very low in the corners create ambience and look modern and homey. Floor-to-ceiling windows are ideal for cardio machine areas—people want to work out more when they can look at the view, listen to their music, and feel at home.
"Air should be constantly circulating and cool. For a smaller gym, always have windows and doors to allow fresh air in and out with a small aromatherapy infusion station in a corner to produce a great smell like patchouli or peppermint. ”
Photography by Grant Frazer
— Los Angeles and Colorado-based designer Kari Whitman of Kari Whitman Interiors
Kari Whitman Interiors
“You should put a home gym anywhere that keeps you motivated. Whether it’s off of the master bedroom, in the basement, in a guest house—somewhere that makes it easy and desirable to workout.
"Since I always like to look out a window while working out, my team and I try to create this for clients. … To make the whole experience more spa-like, we try to incorporate a wall, window, or door that opens up to the outside.
"We always use either a cork or rubber floor in the gyms that we design. It’s just kinder under foot, and to other people in the house who may want a quieter experience.
"Always include mirrors. While they don’t need to be standard clear mirrors, mirrors are as much for vanity as they are to maintain proper form.
"Take colors into consideration. Go with a theme that will motivate you. Some people like industrial and sexy. Some like light and spa-like. Think about what may motivate you at the best vacation hotel gym you’ve visited, and then go with that. Chances are you’ll be more likely work out at home if you like the space.”
—Dan Mazzarini, founder of BHDM Design in New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles
Give It Professional Features
“Investing in state-of-the art equipment will help your space feel and function like a real club.
"The type of flooring you choose will help soundproof the room and absorb impact from cardio machines and weights. A softer floor also helps prevent injuries.
"Sprung timber works well for studio areas where you’ll do aerobics and dance; very thick, dense rubber is best for the weights areas, and isolated floors are good for running machines.
"Natural lighting is a must; you don’t want a direct spotlight shining in your eyes—which is often a big gripe for members of a professional gym.”
—Lesley Lawson, head of design and planning for England-based Galliard Homes
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