- What is a half rack gym?
- Half rack vs. full rack gym
- Benefits of half rack gym
- Buying guide for half rack gym
- 10 Best Half Racks for Your Home Gym
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final words
Power racks are one of the gym staples. But for home gyms, these pieces of equipment can be pretty cumbersome and bulky. To answer this need, the best half rack for your home gym was made. It has a smaller build than full-fledged power racks, but not short of functionality.
If you’re in search of the best half racks, you’re at the right place. We’ve reviewed 10 of the best options in the market together with some added tips so you can make the most out of your purchase.
What is a half rack gym?
A half rack is a piece of gym equipment composed of a solid base where the two vertical bars extend upward. There could be another bar at the top that can be used for pull-ups and other exercises.
So why is it called a half rack ‘gym’ if it’s just a single piece of equipment? Since you can perform multiple exercises on a half rack, it’s then called a mini gym. For deadlifts, it serves as a spotter for home use when no other person is present to watch over you.
Half racks are the preferred option of many home gym owners because of its smaller size. And since it’s a trimmed-down version of full racks, it’s a much cheaper choice as well.
Half rack vs. full rack gym
One of the common questions we often receive is about the difference between a half rack and a full rack. As their name suggests, we assume that most of you will have an idea about the difference. But for beginners, here’s a quick rundown of these racks’ differences.
So which one should you buy? It all boils down to your workout needs. Both half racks and full racks are functional, but each one isn’t for everybody. For most home gyms, half racks will be an ideal addition due to its smaller size, versatility, and more workout area.
Benefits of half rack gym
If you’re thinking twice about getting a half rack, the following benefits may help you decide:
It offers a full-body workout. Depending on the construction of the half rack, it can be used for weight lifting, pull-ups, bench presses, and other exercises from head to toe. In just one piece of equipment, you can tone your body easily.
It’s easier to install. Unlike full racks that come with dozens of parts, half racks are much simpler. There are only several bars that you need to put together. Also, most half racks don’t require additional floor support for the installation.
You can work out alone. One of the biggest benefits of using a half rack is you can work out alone without compromising your safety. It usually comes with weight racks to serve as your spotter.
Buying guide for half rack gym
When looking for the best half rack for your home gym, you must first consider the following aspects:
Your workout goals
Before you put your money on a half rack, make sure that it’s in line with your workout goals. This pertains to the purpose of the rack in your home gym.
Are you planning to lose weight? Build muscles? Such fitness goals have to follow a specific workout regime, which will directly affect the features of the rack you will purchase.
For building muscles, you need a power rack with solid bars and additional features. This way, the equipment can endure the extensive force associated with weight and strength training.
Next, you have to take exact measurements for the half rack. Sure, half racks are smaller than full racks, but it can get really bulky for a tiny home gym.
Always measure the floor area first as well as the overhead clearance of the rack against the installation area. Aside from the inch-by-inch measurement, there should be additional space for you to move around.
Remember that half racks aren’t limited to weightlifting purposes alone. Make sure that whatever exercises you’re going to do in it will be comfortable with the space in your home gym.
The quality of the materials used on the half rack should be durable enough to withstand extreme force. Make sure that the bars are made of high-grade steel with an anti-corrosion finish.
Also, decide if you want a half rack that you can fix on the floor or one that you can move around. Half racks that can be bolted on the floor offer the best stability and safety. However, you have to be sure about the installation area first.
Most of all, check the weight capacity of the half rack. Most half racks made of thick steel can carry more weight. To give you an idea, half racks can support a weight capacity of about 300 to 1,100+ pounds. The more intensive your workout is, and the heavier your weights are, the higher the weight capacity you’ll need.
Half racks have increments on its vertical bars that let you tweak your weight’s position. This way, you can have a safe starting position as well as more efficient isolation.
The more increments there are on the half rack, the better. It will allow you to set your J hooks in the best possible position to increase your safety. This portion also removes the need for trial and error.
Half racks are versatile pieces of equipment, but each one isn’t made like the other. Its versatility is rooted in the types of exercises you can perform in this mini gym.
The following are some of the exercises that a versatile half rack will let you perform:
- Bench press (you need to purchase the bench separately)
- Overhead press
- Military press
These are just some of the routines you can in a power rack. If paired with other workout equipment, you can do more to unleash your rig’s full potential.
Half racks are much easier to assemble than full racks. Still, you shouldn’t underestimate its assembly requirements. You may need some tools to put the pieces together as well as a drill to bolt it into the floor.
Personally, we don’t mind a strenuous assembly if it means we will get to work out on a sturdy and rugged piece of equipment. Anyway, if you’re not much of a handyman, you can always avail of white-glove service.
Using a half rack involves heavy weights. You should always look for safety features like adjustable safety bars, so your weights will not crush your feet should the bar slip from your hands. When performing bench presses, you can set the safety bars higher so it will be an emergency weight rest if you can’t finish the rep. This prevents the barbell from crushing your sternum.
Lastly, look for as many attachments you can get. Some of the staples are J hooks, bolt-on hardware, dip attachment, pull up bar, and so on. These extras add value to your half rack, not to mention that you’ll save more money from purchasing it separately.
10 Best Half Racks for Your Home Gym
1)HulkFit Exercise Half Rack
If you’re looking for the best half rack for your home gym, you’ll never go wrong with the HulkFit Exercise Rack. This one is made of 12-gauge steel with a whopping 800 pounds of weight capacity. Its 2.5-inch x 2.5-inch metal bars ensure stability at all times.
Moreover, this HulkFit rig comes with two pull up bars with diameters to suit your style. You can also tweak the height of these pull-up bars to match your workout.
Aside from that, this half rack is equipped with two J-hooks, two dip bars that also work as spotters arms, and a lock to keep the safety bars in place.
The H-shaped base of this rack keeps everything stable as you work out. There are also weight holders on the base so you can keep your plates organized. It also allows you to use your plates as additional weight to keep the rack stable for more rigorous routines.
We also like it that the vertical bars have increment holes from bottom to top. This rack also has rubber feet to prevent damaging your home gym floor.
Overall, this half rack is a champ for any workout. When assembled, it measures 81 inches tall, 44 inches wide, and 46 inches deep. It weighs 110 pounds, which is just right for its size and your stability needs.
Rugged and solid build
800 pounds of weight capacity
Excellent safety features
No instructions included in the packag
- CAP Barbell Power Half Rack
If you’re looking for another half rack option, we highly recommend the CAP Barbell Power Half Rack. This rig is made from a combination of 11 and 12-gauge steel tubing that can handle up to 750 pounds of user weight.
It’s also equipped with a myriad of features, including built-in weight storage at the base that adds stability on your rack. Nevertheless, if you wish to secure this rack on the floor, it comes with hardware holes on each corner of the base.
This is also a maintenance-free rack, thanks to its power-coated finish that resists rust. Also, the upright bars have excellent increments so you can adjust the included J-hooks based on your type of workout. There’s a built-in pull-up bar at the top so you can vary your routines.
CAP Barbell isn’t new to the weight training field. They have been producing weight training equipment for the past 30 years, so this rack will surely last long. It can double as a power rack and a squat stand. The squat rack also goes low enough so you can use it for bench presses.
Our only gripe is that the safety bars/catches are an add-on you have to pay for separately. Other than that, we’re impressed by the quality and build of this power rack.
- Sunny Health & Fitness Power Rack
If you’re serious about weightlifting, the Sunny Health & Fitness might be the perfect half rack for you. This rugged rig is made of thick metal bars as well as a knurled grip pull up bar for the best workouts.
Aside from that, this comes with a landmine barbell attachment so you can maximize this piece of equipment for rotation exercises and core drills. The landmine barbell attachment has a 360-degree rotation for added convenience.
This rack also has 30 height adjustment increments, resistance band posts on the base, a pair of J-hooks, and 16-inch spotter arms. This way, you can perform deadlifts with peace of mind.
To say that the Sunny Health & Fitness rack is a powerhouse unit is an understatement. It even comes with an 11-inch Olympic plate storage post and hardware holes to bolt the rig to the floor. Just take note that the assembly of this rig can be challenging.
When assembled, this half rack is 83 inches tall, 42 inches long, and 47 inches wide. With such features and build, we can say that this rack is made for regular weightlifters. It’s heavier than most half racks, but it just proves how sturdy and stable its construction is.
- RELIFE BUILD YOUR LIFE Power Tower
If you don’t have much space in your home gym, consider the RELIFE BUILD YOUR LIFE Power Tower. This is the perfect rack for strength training without consuming too much space in your home.
This rack is made with sturdy metal bars with a knurled grip pull up bar at the top as well as a safety locknut, so everything stays intact. Aside from that, we like the fact that this rack has nine levels of height adjustment, which can be set to let children perform some exercises.
It also comes with a backrest that you can adjust to four different levels. Within the backrest are the patented and adjustable handles with padded armrests.
This is a multi-function dip station where you can tone your chest, triceps, shoulders, legs, and every major muscle group.
The feet of this rack has suction cups to keep the rig stable and in place. Once fully assembled, this rack is 89 inches high, 35.4 inches long, and 26.4 inches wide. It’s much smaller than other racks, but it surely offers a ton of benefits for your small home gym.
And for your peace of mind, this rack is covered by a 1-year warranty on the frame and a lifetime warranty on all the other parts.
- HYD-Parts Power Tower
For those looking for a sturdier half rack, we recommend the HYD-Parts Power Tower. This is made of durable and reinforced steel to support up to 550 pounds of weight. Aside from that, this half rack has textured grips to prevent slippage while performing dips, pull-ups, and other routines.
Moreover, you can adjust the height of this rack to add variety to your drills. It’s very versatile that you can work out on a height of 64 to 84.7 inches tall. The dip handles are also adjustable to suit the user’s preferences.
At the top of the rack, there’s a built-in pull up with knurled handles. And for safe dips, there’s also well-padded back support and armrests.
With this rig, you can train your chest, shoulders, arms, back, abdomen, and legs. It’s a very versatile piece of equipment that will level up your home gym. It’s excellent and well-made for its purpose.
The only negative thing we noticed is it doesn’t give the option to bolt it to the floor. So if you have to perform strenuous routines, we recommend placing some plates on the base to make it more stable.
Overall, this half rack is worth the money for those who are setting up their home gym on a budget. It gives the best bang for the buck if you want a piece of equipment that lasts long.
- KiNGKANG Power Tower
If you’re not looking for a very rugged half rack, you can settle for the KiNGKANG Power Tower. This one has an adjustable height so you can perform dips, pull-ups, and other routines in 6 different settings.
What we also like about this is the soft pads on the armrests when performing dips. It also comes with a padded backrest and handles for your safety.
We also like that the base of this rack is curved for additional stability. The pull-up bar has a knurled grip that engages your arm muscles well. Just note that the armrests are not adjustable for this half rack.
This half rack can be adjusted from 72 inches to 92 inches tall as you wish. However, as you go taller, we recommend adding weights at the base to maintain the rig’s stability.
Overall, this is a useful half rack for a home gym. It can support up to 330 pounds of user weight, which is more than enough for most users. Just take note that this requires assembly, but don’t fret because the package includes an instruction manual to make things easy for you.
- BangTong&Li Power Tower
Another half rack for strength training that we like is the one from BangTong&Li. It’s made of thick ad durable carbon steel bars, high-density foam grips, and non-skid armrests. For such construction, this half rack can carry up to 330 pounds of user weight.
With this rig, you can perform chin-ups, pull-ups, dips, knee raises, and other muscle-toning drills. The best part here is that this rack is small enough to fit inside a small home gym or even your living room. You can also adjust the height in six different levels from 76 inches to 84 inches.
The rack is designed ergonomically so you can work out with ease and safety. There’s even an auxiliary rod just above the base for added stability. The cushion pads are thick at 5 cm for guaranteed comfort, no matter how heavy the user is.
Overall, this is a compact choice since it will only consume a floor space of 41 inches by 43 inches. It’s also very easy to assemble since everything is already included in the package.
You simply can’t beat the value of this rack. This might be one of the best options without dipping into your savings if you’re toning your body.
- Body-Solid Vertical Knee Raise Rack
If a full-sized half rack can’t fit in your home, your best bet is the Body-Solid Knee Raise Rack. It may not have the functions of a half rack, but it works well in toning your body through strength training. This is the best rack for abdominal and core training at home.
This piece of equipment has dip station handles as well as a large Durafirm back pad for support. The arm pads are also thick to reduce fatigue and prevent slippage while working out.
The dip handles are 54 inches from the floor, which is more than enough height for most users. Also, when fully assembled, this rig will only consume 24 inches x 34.5 inches of floor area. As for the vertical clearance, this piece of equipment only needs five feet.
What we really like about this workout rig is its very solid base. It’s made of a heavy-gauge steel frame put together on a 4-side welded construction.
Assembly is also a total breeze since the rack will be ready for use in just 20 minutes. For its quality and function, we can say that this is a commercial-grade knee raise rack. It’s solid and guaranteed to last for years.
- Stamina Outdoor Power Tower
If your home gym is located on your garage or other outdoor spots in your property, we recommend the Stamina Power Tower. This is made to withstand all seasons, thanks to its rugged construction of heavy-duty steel frame.
This is a multi-station rig with a pull-up station, push up station, and dip station. We also like that the pull-up station has three different grip options instead of one knurled grip bar.
Aside from that, there’s a plyo box on one side of the rack where you can perform lower and upper body exercises. This measures 16 inches x 24 inches, which is suitable for almost all users. You can also adjust its height for different drills. You can also bolt this into concrete for total stability.
Overall, we love the tough construction of this power tower. Although it has a simple design, it packs multiple stations that can give other options a run for its money. It’s even treated with a UV protection layer so the rack will retain its color even if installed outdoors.
Our only gripe is that the handles are not padded, so you may need to wear a pair of workout gloves. Also, it’s a little heavy at 144 pounds, but considering its quality, this is may not be an issue at all.
- Diophros Barbell Power Rack
Lastly, if you’re looking for the best half rack for your home gym, consider the Diophros Barbell Power Rack. This one is a power tower and a half rack in one, which allows you to perform a slew of strength and weight-training drills.
In this rack, you can perform deadlifts, squats, bench presses, push-ups, pull-ups, and other exercises. It has a double tube spacing for added stability on its structure. Both of these tubes are made of heavy-duty steel that can support up to 880 pounds of user weight.
There are also adjustable J&K hooks on the package so you can rack and unrack your barbell at the height you prefer. It also has L-hooks that cushion the barbell weight for a protective effect.
Once assembled, this half rack will be 84.65 inches tall, 40 inches wide, and 42 inches deep. This half rack is compatible with a bench press.
Overall, this half rack/power rack is a powerhouse workout rig. Its quality is hard to beat, not to mention that it’s covered with a 6-month free replacement guarantee. For those setting up a home gym, this half rack is a worthy investment. This is a versatile rig for all levels of workout.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I need to bolt down my half rack?
A: The answer is yes, especially if you’ll be lifting very heavy weights. Bolting the power rack to the floor will guarantee stability and safety. This will prevent the rack from topping or losing its balance. Most half racks nowadays will come with bolt-on hardware for your convenience.
Q: Can I do a deadlift in my half rack?
A: With the versatility of a half rack, deadlifts are possible. Just make sure that the rack is bolted on the floor and assembled properly. Remember that this equipment will serve as your spotter when someone isn’t around.
Q: What can you do with a power rack?
A: With a power rack, you can do barbell squats, pull-ups, bench presses, rack pulls, and inverted rows. It’s a very versatile piece of equipment that you can add to your home gym. It also comes with a variety of features and accessories.
Q: Can I install a half rack on the second floor of my house?
A: You can install a power rack on an elevated floor. However, you have to factor in the weight of the equipment, the dimensions, and the support it may need for the installation. Aside from that, you should also consider the working weight or the racks’ weight plus your body weight and added force.
Q: Which is better, half rack or full rack?
A: Both the half rack and full rack are very useful, but if you don’t have space at home and the extra budget, half racks are the way to go. Still, it rolls off some of the amazing features of a full rack. Nevertheless, half racks are still useful and amazing pieces of equipment for your home gym.
The best half rack for your home gym will add instant function to your wellness room. It allows you to perform multiple exercises and routines in just one piece of equipment. Just make sure that you purchase one that’s made of durable steel. Above all, you should consider the dimensions, design, features, and extras that come with it.
When it comes to this type equipment, investing a few more bucks will go a long way. So instead of sticking to cheap and fragile options, you can put your money on a rack that will last for years.
What do you think of the half racks and power towers we reviewed here? Let us know below!