Can an All-in-One Trainer Replace a Gym? (Brought to You by Force USA)

You could save space, commute time, and money by switching to an All-In-One Trainer.

This piece is brought to you in paid partnership with Force USA. We may receive commissions on items purchased through links on this page.

Sometimes, the hardest part about staying consistent with your training is getting to the gym. A busy work schedule and home life is enough to deter even the most ravenous trainee from working out. Add in a 20-minute drive, and forget about it some days. 

One solution is to bring the gym to you. It’s the 21st century. Any dumbbell, kettlebell, or barbell you could ever desire is a mouse-click away. Or, if you’re looking for a complete set-up, you can, and should, consider an All-In-One Trainer. 

All-In-One Trainers have many of the benefits of a home gym while maintaining most, if not all, of the movement possibilities offered by a commercial gym…but can they actually replace a complete gym? Let’s break down how Force USA’s G-Series All-In-One Trainers offer users the ability to perform various exercises that cover the fundamental movement patterns — push, pull, squat, lunge, and hip hinge.

Force USA All-In-One Trainers
Force USA All-In-One Trainers
Force USA All-In-One Trainers

The Force USA All-In-One Trainers include up to 18 attachments and features could include a power rack, Smith machine, dip handles, low row, suspension trainer, and a lat pulldown station.

What Is an All-In-One Trainer?

All-In-One Trainers are what the name implies: a combination of, typically, five to 10 strength-training machines into one apparatus with a power rack at its base. More basic All-In-One Trainers often include a half rack, a cable crossover, a Smith machine, a landmine, and a chin-up station.

More deluxe versions, like Force USA’s G20, also include a vertical leg press, a suspension trainer, a lat pulldown seat, a dip handle, and a low row foot plate attachment. For example, Force USA’s G15 All-In-One Trainer features eight strength training machines with available upgrade kits.

Value of Convenience

An All-In-One Trainer can cost a few thousand dollars, but the short-term sticker shock is arguably worth the long-term investment given the cost of yearly gym memberships, traveling expenses (i.e., gas and parking), and time spent commuting. The extra floor space saved is also no joke. Imagine the amount of additional space taken up by eight different strength training machines rather than combining them into one tricked-out power rack.

Once you own an All-In-One Trainer, having free access to it anytime you want will likely increase the amount of exercise you do. Not only does having access to a gym lead to a healthier lifestyle than those who don’t, but it also leads to more overall physical activity by removing one of the most common perceived barriers to fitness: cost. (1)(2)

Combined with a diet consisting of 36 percent carbohydrates, 26 percent fat, and 38 percent protein that sustains a caloric deficit, those with access to a multi-exercise pulley system (aka an All-In-One Trainer) at home can lose significant weight and improve other areas of their health. Participants from a 2019 study in the International Journal of Exercise Science improved their resting heart rate and aerobic fitness and reduced their fat mass by an average of 6.8 kilograms (15 pounds) after 12 weeks of exercise. (3)

How an All-In-One Trainer Works

It’s understandable that some lifters may question the efficacy of an All-in-One Trainer. Big box gyms offer a never-ending oasis of free weights and power racks, so downsizing to a single machine with a few functions will leave your muscles wanting more, right? Not necessarily. 

Whether you want to get stronger or gain muscle, what matters the most is that you’re targeting each of the seven fundamental movement patterns: push, pull, squat, lunge, hip hinge, rotation, and carry. 

According to Sports Medicine, fundamental movements “are assumed to be the basic prerequisite motor movements underpinning coordination of more integrated and advanced movement capabilities.” (4) In Layman’s terms, they are the movements that people use to move through their range of motion and as a foundation for performing more complex exercises.

Force USA Gif

The fundamental movement patterns can be broken down further into planes of motion (e.g., horizontal push, vertical push, horizontal pull, vertical pull).

Equipment offered at commercial gyms, while usually presented as means to target particular muscle groups, are effectively machines that provide the user with the capacity to perform movement patterns for the targeted muscle group. For example, a leg press is fundamentally a squat, a deadlift is a hip hinge, any row is a pull, and any press is a push.

The point is this: As long as you have access to equipment that allows you to load your body across all seven of these movement patterns, then you shouldn’t have a problem achieving your strength training goals. 

The key to getting stronger or bigger is progressively loading the movements you perform over time. As long as you can add more weight to or more reps of any row, squat, overhead press, and so on, you will see gains. Having a variety of machines at your disposal is a fun way to change things up, but it’s not a necessity.

Force USA’s G15 All-In-One Trainer

Force USA offers seven different All-In-One Trainers that can be sifted into two categories: plate loaded and pin & plate loaded — three of the former (G3, G9, and G10) and four of the latter (G6, G12, G15, and G20) are in the series. Pin & plate loaded machines feature weight stacks typically seen on cable machines. Let’s look at the features of the G15 All-In-One Trainer and some of the exercises across the fundamental movement patterns it offers.

Per Force USA, here are the G15’s features:

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Routine gym-goers might recognize the G15 as a Smith machine, power rack, and cable machine combo. Here are some of the exercise options within the fundamental movement patterns it could support:

Push

Pull

Squat

Lunge

  • Reverse lunge
  • Bulgarian split squat (w/weight bench)

Hip Hinge

Aside from specialized machines for heavier movements like hack squats, pendulum squats, or chest-supported T-bar rows, the G15 encompasses a wide enough range of movements to support a full workout that included all the fundamental movement patterns. Since it is an All-in-One trainer with weight plates and an adjustable weight stack, the user could even perform supersets and drop sets.

[Related: What Is the X-Frame In Bodybuilding and How to Get One]

Training at Home

While training consistency should be maintained for higher physical activity levels, training at home can provide the same health benefits as training at a communal gym, assuming equipment access is comparable.

When testing participants over 10 weeks, a November 2021 study in Clinical and Experimental Hypertension found that home-based training has been shown to “improve functional fitness and body composition” as well as gym-based training and are “advisable substitutes” for each other. (5)(6)

Per JAMA, “access to home exercise equipment facilitates the maintenance of short-bout exercise, which may improve long-term weight loss.” Those who had exercise equipment at home maintained higher levels of exercise at the 13-month and 18-month checkpoints than their counterparts who did not have the same home-gym access. Home-based exercise appears effective for improving muscle strength, muscular endurance, muscle power, and balance. (7)(8)

May the Force USA Be With You

Access to a home gym that can provide you with the capacity to perform exercises across the fundamental movement patterns can be just as effective as training at a commercial gym. Force USA’s G-Series All-In-One Trainers are effectively an entire gym in a single weight-loaded pin & plate-loaded apparatus. 

If you want to invest in a research-backed way to increase your training consistency and all the health benefits that come with that, acquiring a home gym like the All-In-One Trainers offered by Force USA is a great option to consider.

Force USA All-In-One Trainers
Force USA All-In-One Trainers
Force USA All-In-One Trainers

The Force USA All-In-One Trainers include up to 18 attachments and features could include a power rack, Smith machine, dip handles, low row, suspension trainer, and a lat pulldown station.

References

  1. Ready AE, Naimark BJ, Tate R, Boreskie SL. Fitness centre membership is related to healthy behaviours. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2005 Jun;45(2):199-207. PMID: 16355081.
  2. Kruger J, Carlson SA, Kohl HW 3rd. Fitness facilities for adults: differences in perceived access and usage. Am J Prev Med. 2007 Jun;32(6):500-5. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2007.02.003. PMID: 17533065.
  3. Roberts CK, Segovia DE, Lankford DE. Effects of Home-Based Exercise Training Systems, Combined with Diet, on Cardiometabolic Health. Int J Exerc Sci. 2019;12(2):871-885. Published 2019 May 1.
  4. Tompsett C, Sanders R, Taylor C, Cobley S. Pedagogical Approaches to and Effects of Fundamental Movement Skill Interventions on Health Outcomes: A Systematic Review. Sports Med. 2017 Sep;47(9):1795-1819. doi: 10.1007/s40279-017-0697-z. PMID: 28213755.
  5. Schumacher LM, Thomas JG, Raynor HA, Rhodes RE, O’Leary KC, Wing RR, Bond DS. Relationship of Consistency in Timing of Exercise Performance and Exercise Levels Among Successful Weight Loss Maintainers. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 Aug;27(8):1285-1291. doi: 10.1002/oby.22535. Epub 2019 Jul 3. PMID: 31267674.
  6. Islami F, Saghebjoo M, Kazemi T, Hedayati M. Gym and home-based combined training in men with primary hypertension: are they equally effective on functional fitness profile, body composition components, and biochemical parameters of hypertension? Clin Exp Hypertens. 2021 Nov 17;43(8):758-771. doi: 10.1080/10641963.2021.1960365. Epub 2021 Sep 1. PMID: 34467787.
  7. Jakicic JM, Winters C, Lang W, Wing RR. Effects of intermittent exercise and use of home exercise equipment on adherence, weight loss, and fitness in overweight women: a randomized trial. JAMA. 1999 Oct 27;282(16):1554-60. doi: 10.1001/jama.282.16.1554. PMID: 10546695.
  8. Chaabene, H., Prieske, O., Herz, M., Moran, J., Höhne, J., & Kliegl, R. et al. (2021). Home-based exercise programmes improve physical fitness of healthy older adults: A PRISMA-compliant systematic review and meta-analysis with relevance for COVID-19. Ageing Research Reviews67, 101265. doi: 10.1016/j.arr.2021.101265