Knowledge & Advice Gym Owners Advice

Best Gym Equipment for a Fitness Studio in 2023

Best Gym Equipment for a Fitness Studio in 2023

As a fitness studio owner you might be considering upgrading or expanding your current offering. With new equipment and trends to keep up with every year, it can leave you wondering what should you include in your fitness studio?

Fitness studios tend to be smaller than commercial gyms which can make it difficult to know exactly which equipment to change, due to limited space. This is why we wanted to create this blog as a handy guide to help you keep your fitness studio on trend. In addition, we also included some of our fitness industry insights into the top trends we are seeing this year.

We think that fitness studios have never been in a better position to succeed, so read on below for our top trends and top fitness studio products you should consider adding to your current offering.

Table of Contents

fitness studio
True Fitness Kilmarnock

HIIT Training is as popular as ever

In 2020 a survey by ACSM found that HIIT training was as popular as ever. While this form of exercise has been around for years, it was largely popularised during the CrossFit boom and demand for this style of training in 2023 is only trending upwards as shown below.

Moreover, many studios now combine strength training with traditional HIIT workouts to offer clients something different to their normal training routine. With this in mind, consider adding a new HIIT session variation to your current class list to keep things fresh.

Google Global HIIT Trend in 2023

Outdoor Training

If you're looking to expand your fitness studio, consider adding an outdoor workout zone if you have space available. This could give you the option to offer bootcamp style classes as a new way to engage with clients. Weather permitting, if the sun is shining it can be a great way to mix up regular classes in a fun new setting.

Outdoor Training with Origin Fitness

Functional Fitness Is On The Rise

While bodybuilding, powerlifting, and strongman training styles will always be popular, we are noticing a change in interests. Many people are now more focussed on the functionality of training, which can be thanked partly to the rise of CrossFit. If you're looking to expand your facility consider adding more functional training zones with circuits that include tyre flips, sledgehammers, battle ropes, and weight sleds.

MOD Royal Lancers Gym
MOD - Royal Lancers

Community is as important as ever

The increase in home gyms was expected throughout 2020-2021, but we seeing a growing a trend of people heading back to community focussed workout environments. Fitness studios such as Move Your Frame offer an inclusive workout environment for all where people can make friends, have fun and get in a great workout session at the same time.

Group sessions have become so popular as people want to feel part of an inclusive fitness community. It's a great way to make new friends, stay motivated and allows them to feel part of a supportive community. Inclusive group training is only going to continue growing in popularity, so try offering more of these sessions as a way to engage new clients or reinvigorate your current client base.

group fitness session Edinburgh
Synergy Group Fitness - Edinburgh

Recovery Focus

Research into workout recovery has significantly developed over the last few years. Every year new data emerges on the best methods of recovery to improve performance in the gym. A whole variety of recovery methods are now available to all from traditional foam rollers all the way to high tech compression boots.

One of the biggest trends we are seeing is the use of massage gun, as they shorten recovery time and help loosen nuisance knots. This recovery form is a favourite with top athlete's in cycling, football, and golf as seen below in our players gym at the 151st Open Championship. Consider offering something like Theragun to clients as part of their membership package.

golfer using Theragun recovery equipment
Theragun at the 151st Open Championship

Top 12 Gym Equipment Products for a Fitness Studio

Free Weights

Origin Studio Dumbbells

Our first essential fitness studio gym equipment items are free weights, more specifically Studio dumbbells or kettlebells. Both are popular with group classes due to incremental weight progression which allows clients to gradually make training more challenging.

They stand out with bright bold colour schemes making them appealing to even the newest of fitness studio members. In addition, they feature an anti-roll design which prevents equipment rolling across the floor during intense classes with frequent weight changes.

With this in mind, choose a mix of vinyl, rubber, or urethane free weight options to keep any client happy whether they're a HIIT enthusiasts, Zumba fan, or Pilates pro. 

Benefits of Free Weights:

  • Bright colours are more appealing to new clients
  • Anti-roll design stops equipment rolling away during group session
  • Help clients stabilise muscles, correct form, and reduce muscle imbalances
  • Vinyl, rubber, and urethane coatings make it easy to wipe clean after every studio session

Studio Barbell Set

group class with studio barbells
Origin Rubber Studio Barbell Set

No fitness studio is complete without a studio barbell set, the perfect bit of kit for group exercises sessions. Offering something different to traditional barbell sets, they are the perfect lightweight tool for helping clients tone, strengthen, and condition their body.

Built to handle intense studio classes, they are made from durable rubber or urethane materials which can withstand constant usage. These materials help reduce the amount of wear and tear that occurs with constant handling, and helps them maintain a clean look and feel for years.

If you're considering a studio barbell set we recommend using a quality Studio Barbell Storage rack to keep your space organised. This has the added benefit of making it significantly easier to change equipment in a flash, helping to keep your class on schedule and reducing wasted time changing weights in between sets.

Benefits of a Studio Barbell Set:

  • Durable design built to withstand constant use
  • Urethane and rubber materials reduce wear and tear effect
  • Quick weight change helps maximise training time
  • Vibrant colour schemes are more appealing
  • Simple weight identification

Origin Urethane Studio Weight Set

Aerobic Step

aerobic decks
Origin vs Reebok Aerobic Decks

One of the more popular pieces of gym equipment in modern fitness studios, aerobic steps or aerobic decks are great for whole body training. Consider offering clients a step aerobic class to develop their core muscles, increase strength, and improve cardiovascular endurance.

Two of our favourite are the Origin Aerobic Deck or Reebok Studio Deck, both are the ultimate conditioning tool with a range of benefits not to miss out on. They feature adjustable platforms, multiple seating positions, work with resistance bands, and have enough storage space for two studio dumbbells.

Benefits of an Aerobic Step:

  • Compact design reduces storage space requirements
  • Adjustable positions increase the number of exercises it can be used with
  • Anti-slip workout surfaces prevent clients slipping as they break a sweat
  • Use alongside dumbbells and resistance bands for a more versatile workout

Origin vs Reebok Aerobic Decks

Foam Roller

Origin Core Foam Roller
Origin Core Foam Roller

Foam Rollers whether short or long, give your clients the ability to perform self-myofascial release by giving themselves muscle massages. It's no surprise we included foam rollers on this list, they are a basic but essential tool clients should be making use of.

Foam rollers are one of the best injury prevention methods. Before exercise, clients should use one to properly stretch out muscles and ensure the body is activated. Doing this increases tissue elasticity, range of motion, and blood circulation for a more effective workout.

Post training they are a fantastic recovery aid that reduces muscle fatigue and can help clients to recover quicker from training. If you want to maximise training performance then we recommend pairing them with an exercise mat for ultimate comfort.

Benefits of a Foam Roller:

  • Invaluable tool for helping clients recover from training
  • Great for warm-up and cool-down sessions which prevents injury
  • Compact design makes it easy to store in any size of fitness studio

Gym Mats

gym mat
Origin EVA Fitness Mat

An essential for all fitness studios is a good quality gym mat that can provide a stable base for clients to workout on. The main benefit to gym mats is that they provide soft cushioning that protects the body, in particular joints, compared to a hard gym floor.

They offer a comfortable space for performing all kinds floor work that reduces injury risk and can be used before, during, and after a workout. Each space is different, but we recommend having at least two types such as a general fitness mat, stretch mat, or a yoga & pilates mats.

A quality gym mat isn't just for clients, they are also great for protecting gym flooring or equipment. For example, placing a CV Floor Protection Mat underneath strength equipment is just one way to reduce damage to machines and prevent flooring from getting scratched.

Benefits of Gym Mats:

  • Soft cushioning protects body, great for clients with joint related issues
  • Prevents damage to your gym flooring and equipment
  • Easy to store when not in use
  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Reduces noise

Yoga Blocks

yoga blocks
Origin Yoga Blocks

No fitness studio would be complete without a good quality yoga block or brick. As the name suggests they are the go to gym equipment for studios offering yoga or Pilates classes. They provide additional support on the hips when working on the floor, reduce spinal pressure, and help with overall body alignment.

In addition they can be used to help improve range of motion, build flexibility, and make it more comfortable to ease into challenging poses. Even if you don't offer a yoga or Pilates class it's well worth having a few on hand for helping clients with mobility issues.

The Origin Yoga Block and Bricks are a great tool for helping clients get a deeper stretch in their muscles. Manufactured from a high-density lightweight foam, they are extremely durable and feature rounded edges for extra comfort.

Whether you're studio that is completely new or are a yoga pro, blocks or bricks can't be overlooked as a tool to help clients improve balance, mobility, and flexibility.

Benefits of Yoga Blocks:

  • Help clients build flexibility, reduce spinal pressure, and improve range of motion
  • Provides extra support when performing difficult yoga or Pilates poses
  • Lightweight durable design

Resistance Bands

resistance bands
Origin Resistance Bands

Resistance bands are a versatile bit of gym equipment that are a great addition to any fitness studio. A great alternative to free weights they are highly effective for targeting lower and upper body muscle groups.

With a range of resistance levels, clients can gradually increase the amount of resistance they face as their strength develops. If you have clients that have never set foot in a gym, resistance bands are a fantastic training aid for certain exercises such as pullups until they can use their own bodyweight.

The adaptability also makes them great for any clients where rehabilitation and injury recovery is the goal. When used in a controlled manner they can be help on the road to recovery with torn muscles, ligament damage, and knee injuries.

Our Resistance Bands or Mini Power Bands, are ideal for all of the above and come in a range of resistance levels. With numerous benefits they're a great tool for helping anyone reach their fitness goals quicker and can be used for muscle activation, stretching, and recovery.

Benefits of Resistance Bands:

  • Range of resistance levels makes them suitable for all levels of client ability
  • Great for rehabilitation, strength training, or weight loss
  • Use with weighted exercises for additional resistance on the bench press, squat, or deadlift
  • Lightweight, portable, and easy to store

Gym Balls

Origin Anti-Burst Gym Ball

Gym balls are perfect for helping clients improve their stability, posture, and overall balance. As they don't remain in a fixed position it helps stabilise core abdominal muscles groups. If you haven't tried it, use a gym ball at a desk instead of a seat. It will improve your posture, reduce spinal pressure, and help to stretch out back muscles.

Anti Burst Gym Balls or Weighted Gym Balls both have a textured surface which provides additional grip and support when performing exercises. This can allow your clients to complete a range of movements including leg lifts, abdominal crunches, and bridge lifts without slipping!

Depending on the coaching you offer clients its worth also looking into an Air Balance Trainer or Air Balance Disc, as both are great for helping clients work on their balance and strength. They are a popular tool for rehabilitation as the difficulty can be adjusted by adding more or less air, making them especially effective for feet and ankle work.

Benefits of Gym Balls:

  • Help clients develop strength and balance
  • Great for rehabilitation and injury recovery
  • Recommend clients use instead of a seat at work to improve posture

Fluidity Studio Barre

height adjustable ballet barre
Fluidity Studio Dual User Barre

The newest addition to our list of fitness studio equipment is the Fluidity Studio Barre. It is the worlds first height-adjustable ballet barre, however it's not just for ballet dancers! Unlike wall mounted barres, this version is completely portable as a freestanding unit.

It is uses bodyweight resistance making it perfect helping clients develop strength, flexibility, and mobility across their whole body. This piece of gym equipment would be especially useful for clients with rehabilitation needs and features a powder coated finish to prevent chipping, has comfortable high density foam padding, and can easily be stored when not in use.

Benefits of the Fluidity Studio Barre:

  • Great for stretching, flexibility, mobility, and strength work
  • Height adjustable makes it suitable for different clients
  • High density mat padding for maximum comfort
  • Powder coated finish reduces flaking and chipping that can occur with high use
  • Lightweight ridged design provides maximum stability
  • Easy to clean and maintain vinyl mat covering

Boxing Equipment

girl exercising with boxing bag
Origin Boxing Equipment

Circuit training has many different variations and is still one of the most popular training styles in fitness studios today. Is there a better way to improve client fitness than in an exhilarating Boxercise or Box Fit training session?

While boxing or MMA training used to be a specialist field, this is no longer the case. Offering this type of training can help your clients develop speed, strength, power, and cardiovascular fitness in an exciting new way.

As a variation of HIIT training, it is an aerobic workout that engages the upper and lower body muscle groups. This makes it great for weight loss, reducing stress, and lowering the risk of certain health conditions. Furthermore these sessions don't involve real sparring and are a fun way to keep your clients fit and healthy.

We know each fitness studio is different and some won't require a full range of boxing equipment. However even if you don't run this type of class it's always worth having a few essential items on hand such as boxing pads, speed ropes, and at least one leather punch bag.

Benefits of Boxing Equipment:

  • Develop clients speed, power, and cardiovascular endurance
  • Improve client health in a fun exciting new class
  • Increase client weight loss and reduce stress

Conditioning Equipment

person using speed ladder
True Fitness Kilmarnock - Speed Ladder

With a wide focus on what your fitness studio should include, we would be remiss not including conditioning equipment. If you're looking to create a more functional training zone then it's well worth investing in conditioning equipment.

We recommend starting with a speed rope or speed ladder as both provide a great aerobic workout. They can be used to help clients burn fat through HIIT training, improve coordination, and overall fitness. To add a strength element use a battle rope during training so clients can work on their power.

If you're looking for the best functional training tool, then a plyo box is what you need. They are great for developing explosive power across the whole body. A wide range of exercises can be performed including vertical jumps, step ups, calf raises, push-ups, and dips.

Each of these items are lightweight, easy to store, and can be set up for different training sessions. If you don't include one of these items in your fitness studio then you're sure to be missing out.

Benefits of Conditioning Equipment:

  • Offer clients sport specific training sessions
  • Improve client strength and power
  • Excellent way to enhance client footwork, endurance, and agility
  • Use HIIT circuits to improve aerobic and anaerobic capacity
  • Accommodate different ability levels by setting up different training stations

Fitness Studio Storage

fitness studio storage
Origin Studio Storage

With all this gym equipment in mind, it's worth considering gym storage to keep your fitness studio organised and ready to go for your next session. Depending on the size of your facility or equipment you have, you're going to require different types of storage.

At Origin Fitness we have a range of studio storage solutions including our studio barbell storage and gym ball racks. If you have larger bits of gym equipment we also have a range of free weight storage, gym mat storage, and functional equipment storage.


By now you should feel confident in knowing what the best gym equipment for your fitness studio is this year. While it's tempting to pack your studio full of new equipment, we suggest you choose wisely and only add pieces that will help you achieve your business goals quickest.

If you need further support you can get in touch with our friendly team by calling them on 0333 2000 750 or email us at [email protected]. Interested in seeing what we could do for your fitness studio space? Take a look at our gym design process or take a look at some of our recent case studies to see what our team could do for you.


Is this the only gym equipment my fitness studio would need?

While this is not an exhaustive list of gym equipment, we know each fitness studio may want to cater to different types of audiences. At Origin Fitness we stock a wide range of products so that you can offer your clients the best fitness equipment. Take a look at the rest of our range which includes free weights, strength equipment, gym flooring, cardio machines, and conditioning equipment.

Does the quality of my gym equipment matter?

By investing in top quality gym equipment for your fitness studio, it means you can offer clients an exceptional fitness environment. By using best in class gym equipment, it is likely to increase member retention over the long hall and by having the right equipment it's more likely to keep clients engaged, satisfied, and loyal to your studio.

What are the best fitness studio classes?

It really depends on what you want to offer clients, we offer a range of products that suit all types of fitness studio classes. From 1-1 sessions, Boxercise, conditioning circuits, HIIT variations, CrossFit training, Zumba, Pilates, Yoga, rehabilitation, or physiotherapy, the sky is really the limit with your fitness studio.

How do I setup a fitness studio?

Each studio is unique so depending on what you want to offer clients, this can vastly change what you need. It's always worth considering budget, space available, and any future goals for expansion. We have worked with a wide range of small to large gym owners, helping them create the perfect gym solution, take a look at our gym design page for more details about what we can do for you.

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