10 Frequently Asked Questions About Weight Room Equipment Installation

September 5, 2017

Putting together a weight room can be a challenging project. From designing the space for the right athlete to lighting all the way to floorplan layout - there are many elements to consider. But have no fear, we want to make the process as seamless as possible from concept to completion. Take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions about weight room equipment installation and start planning your weight room today.

FAQ #1 | What Are the Gym Equipment Placement Standards?

When it comes to weight room equipment installation, the placement of machines and free weights is crucial. According to the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), the tallest machines within the gym should be placed on the perimeter of the gym along the walls to reduce the risk of injury. These machines are often squat racks, power racks and more. 

Dumbbells, barbells and racks should be placed along the walls or in front of the mirrors. Weight racks should have at least three feet of clearance and be placed next to plate loaded equipment such as squat racks or bench presses. Make sure other equipment such as Olympic platforms and circuit training machines also have at least three feet of clearance on each side. 

FAQ #2 | How Does Safety Play a Role in the Design of a Weight Room?

Safety is the most important part of the weight room equipment installation process. An unsafe weight room puts at risk not only the health and welfare of the athlete but presents legal liabilities for the facility and those operating it. To ensure safety measures are being followed, the NSCA states that exercise devices, machines and equipment (which also includes free weights), must be assembled, set up and then placed into the activity areas stated in the manufacturer's instructions. 

Introduce a Safety Procedure to Staff and Athletes

After ensuring the weight room equipment is installed safely, introduce the safety procedure to coaches and athletes. Post the safety considerations in the weight room for athletes to adhere to, such as rules pertaining to jewelry, clothing and the storage of equipment along with a maintenance list for anyone who has to service the equipment. The maintenance list may include information about the tightening of bolts once per month, lubricating the bars and more.

FAQ #3 | How Much Space Is Needed in a Weight Room?

Today, weight training facilities across the nation are spending a pretty penny to give their athletes not only the space they need but the equipment and staffing necessary to ensure a safe and efficient strength and conditioning weight room. Strength and conditioning weight rooms today start as ‘small’ as 900 square feet and run all the way up to 37,000 square feet, such as Alabama’s strength & conditioning facility. 

When designing a strength and conditioning weight room, the amount of space you will need depends on the type and quantity of equipment you want to incorporate, as well as the coaching style.  

Consider the space you have access to outside of your facility, such as a field for warm-ups and speed training. If you don’t have access to a large space like this, you’ll need to double your inlaid platforms pace for mobility and speed work. 

If groups of athletes will overlap in the facility, that will impact the space needed. The size of each group will also be a factor and should be considered as the facility is being planned. 

FAQ #4 | Where Should Lighting Go & What Type Should Be Used?

Strength and conditioning facilities should incorporate both artificial and natural lighting. Lights should be on the ceiling and between 50 and 100 lumens depending on the amount of natural light and the height of the ceilings. Natural light helps weight rooms and facilities feel more spacious and modern. Additionally, with the help of mirrors, light can be enhanced and reflected into areas where natural light is not possible.

High efficiency bulbs can be more effective in a weight room facility, as they take less time to turn on and off. If some light bulbs are turned off, they may not turn back on until they were cooled, which could take as long as 30 minutes in some instances. This would require lights to stay on all day. Instead, be sure to opt for an energy efficient option. 

FAQ #5 | Do You Provide Floorplans and Layouts Prior to Weight Equipment Installation?

Prior to any strength and conditioning weight room installation, Power Lift can provide a floor plan and layout design. It is our top priority to make sure you are receiving not only effective equipment, but also the optimal weight room design.

FAQ #6 | What Does “Full-Service Installation” Mean?

Full-service installation means we don’t just install the weight room equipment; at Power Lift, our representatives use their combined 75 years of experience designing strength and conditioning facilities to plan a safe and effective layout of your weight room. 

Our team provides insight and recommendations and works with architects and planning committees to ensure the weight room layout fits the needs of each individual organization. Our 2D and 3D weight room design layouts demonstrate the ideal placement of each machine and piece of equipment. 

Then when it’s time to get the equipment installed, our Power Lift products are delivered and installed by one of our three installation teams. While others may use subcontractors to do this work, we believe it’s important to see a project through to the very end. We have Power Lift employees whose job is strictly to safely deliver and properly install our American-made equipment around the country. 

FAQ #7 | What are Some Facility Features to Consider?

The great part about designing a new strength and conditioning weight room are the endless possibilities for additional facility features that can make your weight room stand out from others. Many weight room facilities choose to incorporate areas such as:

  • Offices for faculty staff and coaches
  • Medicine ball wall
  • Turf
  • Recovery stations
  • In-ground or above ground platforms 
  • Nutrition areas
  • And more

Whatever you dream up for your facility could be a reality. It’s our goal to help you create a comprehensive facility that meets your athletes’ every need.

FAQ #8: What Can We Do to Ensure the Weight Equipment is Safe?

First and foremost, you need to make sure racks, machines or any other weight training devices are secured to the ground or wall. For the devices that do need mobility (like a bench), non-slip flooring will help stop them from sliding around.

Next, you will want to verify that the machines you have selected for your weight room have safety stops in place. While everyone should always have a spotter, it’s necessary that each machine is safe in it’s own right. At Power Lift, our machines are designed with safety in mind. Each and every machine offers innovative design, unmatched durability and safety features to ensure the equipment is not only efficient, but safe as well. 

Lastly, every piece of equipment is easily accessible. This is similar to our “two feet of clearance” rule. Athletes should not be climbing over equipment or moving equipment regularly. 

FAQ #9 | How Do You Incorporate Pillars into the Space?

Pillars don’t have be a detriment to a facility and can be utilized within the space. A common use we see for pillars is the mounting of Power Lift wall mounted pulley stations such as a combo pulley or adjustable cable column to maximize the space. 

Another usage for pillars is as a storage area for bands, chains, weight belts and more. There are different types of wall mounted storage attachments that are available to make the best use of this space. Some facilities choose to mount TVs and post athlete announcement information on pillars for a prominent viewing location.

FAQ #10 | How Do We Choose Rack Stations?

Choosing the right station for your weight room comes down to the available space you have and how you want to utilize said space.  You need to think through what else you need in the space — possibilities include: turf, a running track or supplemental training stations. We offer a rack station that is guaranteed to fit within your space configuration.

Take Your Weight Room From Concept to Completion

Are you ready to transform your weight room? Power Lift’s Concept to Completion Process will guide you from planning and design to equipment installation to create an effective and efficient strength training facility.