All-In-One Trainer machines offer a lot of options in a single piece of equipment to provide you the environment for your best, possible workout.
Below, we have identified the individual components that make an All-in-One Functional Trainer. Perhaps you won’t need all the equipment that comes with a Functional Trainer, or maybe you are only looking for one or two of these functions. So, we broke them down into individual categories so you can decide whether you need one, some, or all the functions of a Functional Trainer.
For instance, perhaps you are interested in a Smith Machine but also like the versatility of a cable machine. Though not listed in the “Types” section below, you can find machines that you can mix and match to find the perfect balance to meet your needs. But by looking at the individual pieces of equipment, you may find something new and/or different that meets and/or exceeds your expectations.
Perhaps you are a fan of the Landmine Press, Dip Station, or Hip Thrusters? Functional Trainers provide opportunity to add these features to the rack.
- Single Stack or Multi-Stack
- Plate Loaded Cable machines
- Leverage Gym machines
- Smith Machine
- Smart Home Gym
- Smart Home Gym Alternatives
- Best Home Gyms combining the best of the above
- Additional options that do not include weights
Many Add-ons can also further provide variety and versatility.
- A bench
- Anchor points for Resistance Bands
- Anchor points for Suspension Trainers
- Chin up / Pull up bar
- Landmine attachment
- Dip bars
- Barbell J-Hooks for free weight options
Single Stack & Multi-Stack (Cable)
A stack of weights allows for quick weight changes with a pin. Having more than one stack of weights allows for more available weight.
Take note… the pulley system attached to this weight may have a ratio which makes the weight lighter than what is stated on the weight plate. You will typically find 2:1 or 1:1.
2:1 = 200 pounds will feel like 100 pounds. This movement feels smoother, but limits the amount of weight available to work. 1:1 = 200 pounds will feel like 200 pounds.
Plate Loaded Cable Machine)
Just like with the Stack option, a lesser expensive option allows you to bring your own plates.
Be sure to budget for barbell plates when selecting this option.
Leverage Gym Systems
A Lever gym machine has a pivot point.
The lever can be moved to different areas to pull or push down, pull or push up, etc.
Lever gyms machines are typically built with the plate only option.
The Smith Machine is a very popular option. The barbell is guided along a vertical rod and has hooks that allows the user to quickly stop the weight from moving by the turn of their wrist. Many Trainer machines have this function and allow for greater safety when working out alone.
The limitation is that the weight moves along a path and does not allow the user to fully stabilize. Smith Machines are an effective tool when compared to free weights with the added benefit of safety and reduced risk of injury.
Smart Home Gym
The newest type of home gym equipment. Many can be attached to a wall.
Most require a monthly subscription to their coaching services for most of its features to work.
Uses magnets to provide resistance. So, it will feel somewhere between the resistance of the Power Rods and the Function Trainer (Cable).
Take note that most models provide two cables.
Smart Home Gym Alternatives
Let’s face it… Smart Home Gyms are expensive! And they require a monthly subscription to their service.
If you are looking for the adjustable, two pulley system that is attached to the wall but don’t want the “smart” part, here are your best options.
Combine the best of the above for the best all in one Functional Trainer
The true All-in-one Trainers provide enough attachments, exercises, and weight to provide a workout for 1-3 people at a time.
It may be an ample investment to start with, but the variety and versatility are endless.
At these stages, you are looking at commercial grade equipment with stronger steel, well thought out designs for easy exercise changes, as well as many included parts that others would require as additional purchases.
Additional machine options that do not include weights
The most popular manufacturer of this style is Bowflex.
The rods offer an amount of tension, providing a constant resistance.
It does not feel the same as a typical weight, but some people enjoy this style. For instance, a 100 lb. weight may feel like 50 lb. at the beginning of the exercise, 75% halfway through the motion, and then all 100 lb. pushing against you at the top of the repetition.
Another option, with a similar feel would be Resistance bands.
Incline Body weight Machine
The most popular manufacturer of this style is Total Gym.
The resistance is a percentage of the user’s weight. The more the incline, the more the resistance.
The challenge with this style of machine is the weight is only a percentage of your total bodyweight. As you get stronger, you may outgrow this machine.