Total Gym has been around since 1974 – that’s 46 years!
Total Gym was the first to market a bodyweight style home gym.
It not only uses your body weight for resistance, but you can also adjust the incline to intensify your workouts. Add to that some of the many accessories, and you have a complete gym in a very small space.
Is Total Gym the home gym for you?
There are several models to choose from, so let’s take a look at the best Total Gym for you!
In a Hurry? Here is our top pick:
Best Total Gym
- Total Gym Fit – Best Overall
- Total Gym XLS – Best For Fitness Enthusiasts
- Total Gym 1400 Deluxe – Best For Seniors
- Total Gym GTS – The Best High-End Total Gym
- Total Gym Supreme – Best For Beginners
- Total Gym Apex G1 – Best Budget Total Gym
- Total Gym Apex G3 – Best Intermediate Model
- Total Gym Apex G5 – Best For Bodybuilding
Reviews – The Best Total Gym
Total Gym Fit – Best Overall
Total Gym Fit is the newest Total Gym model. It arrives completely assembled and features a lifetime warranty on the frame with a 2-year warranty on parts.
The Total Gym Fit can handle up to 450lbs user weight. There are 12 levels of resistance and more than 85 available exercises.
The Fit comes with the AbCrunch accessory, the ribbed squat stand, wing attachment, and leg pull accessory. There’s also an exercise chart, the Total Gym training deck, and a nutritional meal plan.
The Total Gym Fit is designed to help you have effective yet fun workouts.
- Over 85 Exercises
- 12 Levels Of Resistance
- Includes Several Accessories, Including The AbCrunch
- Some Users Have Experienced Quality Issues
Total Gym XLS – Best For Fitness Enthusiasts
The Total Gym XLS is a well-built, easy to use home gym. The XLS has a user weight capacity of 400 lbs. and you can do 80 exercises.
There are 6 levels of resistance, and accessories include a squat stand, leg pull, and a wing attachment. There’s also an exercise chart, training deck, and a meal plan.
The XLS comes fully assembled, so you can work out as soon as you unpack it. It also features a lifetime warranty on the heavy-duty steel frame and 6 months on parts, making it a good fitness investment.
- There are 6 Levels Of Resistance & 80 Exercises
- User Weight Capacity Of 400 lbs.
- Includes Squat Stand & Wing Attachment
- May Be Too Heavy To Move For Some Users
Total Gym 1400 Deluxe – Best For Seniors
The Total Gym 1400 Deluxe provides over 60 exercises and 8 levels of resistance. It comes completely assembled, so you can unpack it and jump right into your workout.
It includes a squat stand, a leg pulley accessory, and dip bars. This unit also includes a workout DVD, an exercise chart, and a nutrition program. It has a 250lb. user weight capacity and comes with a 3-year warranty.
The Total Gym 1400 Deluxe folds up for easy storage in a closet or corner. The features of the 1400 Deluxe make it the best choice for seniors.
- Comes Fully Assembled
- Folds For Easy Storage
- Features 8 Incline Levels For Progressive Resistance
- May Feel Unstable To Some Users
Total Gym GTS – The Best High-End Total Gym
The GTS is a commercial-grade Total Gym that’s available for home use. The GTS has a user weight capacity of 650lbs.
There’s a 5-year warranty on the frame with 1 year on parts and upholstery, plus 90 days on the rubber and foam. This is a downside when other models feature a lifetime warranty on the frame.
Still, the GTS lets you do over 200 exercises and has 22 levels of resistance. This unit has commercial level accessories that include a 3-grip pullup bar, and a weight bar that you can add weight plates to.
There’s also an ab attachment, squat bar, press bar, and dip bars. The Total Gym GTS has a heavy-duty glide board that’s well-padded for comfort. It also folds for easy storage.
- Over 200 Exercises
- There’s An Extensive List Of Accessories
- 22 Resistance Levels
- Folds For Easy Storage
- Offers A Weak Warranty
- Too Pricey For Some Users
- Some Accessories Are Extra Cost
Total Gym Supreme – Best For Beginners
The Total Gym Supreme is a budget-friendly model that features 12 resistance levels and 60 exercises.
It has a user weight limit of 275lbs. It arrives fully assembled with a 1-year warranty on the frame and 6 months on parts.
This Total Gym version includes the AbCrunch accessory, ribbed squat stand, and tri-grip shaper bars. There’s also the leg pull accessory and the nutrition program with a meal plan.
The Supreme is a good place to start if you’re on a budget and new to using a Total Gym.
- 60 Exercises
- 12 Levels Of Resistance
- No Assembly Needed – Just Unpack It & Train!
- May Not Be Easy To Use For Some Individuals
Total Gym Apex G1 – Best Budget Total Gym
The Total Gym Apex G1 is the entry-level model and it’s similar to the Supreme. It features 6 levels of resistance with over 60 total exercises.
Included with the Apex G1 are the wing attachment, leg pull accessory, and an exercise wall chart. You will also get access to Total Gym TV and a DVD.
Another great thing about this Total Gym is that it has a padded board for comfort, and it features a strong steel frame which can withstand a user weight capacity of 300lbs.
The Apex G1 comes with a 6-month warranty and folds for easy storage. This is the best Total Gym for anyone on a budget.
- You Can Do Over 60 Exercises
- 6 Levels Of Resistance
- Budget Priced
- Limited Resistance, Many Users Will Outgrow The Apex G1 Quickly
Total Gym Apex G3 – Best Intermediate Model
The Apex G3 is the next step in the Apex series. This unit offers 8 levels of resistance and 70 exercises. It has a user weight limit of 300lbs.
There are several accessories such as the wing attachment, dip bars, squat stand, and leg pull. There’s an exercise flip chart and access to Total Gym TV.
Total Gym TV provides access to trainer-led workouts that users can follow along with. There’s also exercise & nutrition guides, and a DVD.
The G3 has a steel frame with auto-lock height adjustment, and it folds for easier storage.
The Apex G3 comes with a 1-year warranty. The Apex G3 opens up more exercises by allowing users to perform chest dips and triceps dips.
Also, users can perform a complete lower body workout by doing squats and using the leg pull to isolate the quads and hamstrings.
- Features 8 Levels Of Resistance
- You Can Do 70 Exercises
- Several Accessories Included
- Some Users Feel It Takes Up Too Much Space When In Use
Total Gym Apex G5 – Best For Bodybuilding
The Apex G5 has 10 levels of resistance and offers 80 exercises.
It has a durable steel frame and holds up to 375lbs user weight.
Like many Total Gym models, this one includes the wing attachment, a bigger squat stand, and the leg pull.
There’s also dip bars, the training “card” deck and access to Total Gym TV. Users can perform dips, and they have access to numerous exercises using the card deck.
Also, they can take advantage of Total Gym TV , which streams workouts that users can follow along with. Plus there’s an exercise & nutrition guide and DVD.
The glide board is padded with a pillow headrest for comfort and features an auto-lock for security when adjusting the height of the glide board.
It folds for storage and comes with a 1-year warranty.
If you’re a bodybuilder and need a compact home gym, the Apex G5 is the best choice.
- There Are 10 Resistance Levels
- You Can Do 80 Exercises
- Good Selection Of Accessories
- May Be Difficult To Unpack For Some Users
Buying Guide – How To Choose The Best Total Gym for Your home?
What Is A Total Gym
As noted above, the Total Gym is a popular home gym that uses body weight and an adjustable incline for resistance. It has evolved over the years and now includes quite a few models.
It also features celebrity-endorsed TV ads featuring Chuck Norris and Christie Brinkley.
The Total Gym uses a height-adjustable padded glide board that slides along a steel frame. You can do a variety of exercises on a Total Gym, and the number of exercises increases as you go up in models.
All Total Gyms use a pulley system to perform the exercises. The Total Gym is space-saving, most models can be folded and easily stored.
What Are The Differences In Total Gym Models?
The differences among models include resistance levels, total exercises, and included accessories. It also includes user weight capacity, the warranty, and last but not least, the price.
As expected, the higher-priced models offer the most features and accessories. Of course, the choice you make will be largely determined by your budget and the space you have available.
Things To Consider Before Buying a Total Gym
For many users, a Total Gym may make a lot more sense than other home gym options. While some models can be expensive, depending on your goals and available space, they are a great way to get in shape.
If you’re a bodybuilder or strength athlete, this is not your best choice. Sure, maybe some of the higher-priced models could work in a pinch, but you’re better off with a power rack and a bar.
However, if you’re a fitness enthusiast, new to exercising, trying to get in shape, or a senior, the Total Gym is a great option.
Here’s what you should consider before you buy your Total Gym:
The frame determines the strength of the machine. The frame on a Total Gym is typically made using steel and is quite durable. The strength of the frame increases as you go up in models.
User Weight Capacity
As each model goes up in price, the user weight capacity will also increase. When choosing your model, it makes sense to go with one that can support 100lbs more than your weight.
One of the most important considerations of a Total Gym or any home gym is the amount of available space you have to use it. With a gym like this, storage is not a problem, and height is not a problem.
However, you will need to have enough length for the machine. You will want to measure your intended space and make sure you have enough room.
Folding & Storage Capability
This ties into the space-saving capacity of the unit.
If you have a designated exercise room, that’s one thing, but many people don’t. For those people, your Total Gym needs to be able to be stored out of the way.
The number of incline levels increases as you go up in models. You’ll need to make sure you choose a model with enough resistance for your experience level. Wirth a range of 6 levels all the way up to 22, there’s enough resistance for anybody. On some higher-end models, there’s also a weight bar that lets you add weight plates for even more resistance.
Every Total Gym uses a pulley system that uses either two D-handles or any of the bar attachments. If you have ever watched the commercials, you can see the user performing various cable-style moves using the D-handles.
Depending on the model, you can use various bars to hit your muscles differently. Some of these bars include a Press Bar for overhead press-style exercises.
There’s also the Tri-Grip Shaper Bar, Triceps Rope, and Upper Body Bar.
The number of exercises you can do on a Total Gym vary per model. The commercial level GTS provides 200 exercises, while the Apex G1 offers 60. As noted, you’ll want to base your choice on your experience levels and your goals.
As you gain more experience, you may want to do more exercises, so choosing a mid-level unit that offers 70-80 exercises may be a good choice.
On the other hand, if you just work out a few times a week and have no plans to add exercises, something like the Apex G1 may be your best choice.
Full Body Workout Including Cardio
It should be noted that you can work your entire body using a Total Gym. With the number of exercises you have at your fingertips, you can incorporate a lot of variety into your workouts.
The only thing that may be difficult is cardio. There is an extra-cost attachment for this, the CycloTrainer. This device attaches to every Total Gym model except the GTS.
It’s a pedaling-device that allows you to imitate a recumbent exercise bike. The only downside to this option is that you can’t involve your upper body while cycling.
This means that you will burn fewer calories than you would if you could work your arms and back like you can on many recumbent exercise bikes.
Still, this option makes the Total Gym a complete home exercise system.
There’s a lot of available accessories that are offered on a Total Gym. The top-end models feature attachments such as a squat handle, a 3-grip pull-up bar, a press bar, and dip bars.
There’s also access to Total Gym TV, the Deck of training information cards, a DVD, and a nutritional meal plan.
The biggest consideration along with space will always be budget. How much are you going to spend on fitness? Your available budget will determine the range of models you can choose from.
A Total Gym can be a satisfying home gym option that will serve you well for years to come. If you’re in the market for one and want the top of the line regardless of cost, the Total Gym GTS is the best choice. This unit has 22 levels of resistance and gives you 200 exercises to choose from. It’s a commercial-level unit so you will need to have space for it because it does not fold.
If you’re a bodybuilder and can’t get to the gym right now, the Total Gym Apex G5 is the best Total Gym for you. This unit has 10 levels of resistance and offers 80 exercises. More importantly, you can do bodybuilding basics such as squats and dips. Plus, it folds for storage.
If budget is a primary concern, the Total Gym Apex G1 is the Total Gym for you. There are 6 levels of resistance, and you can do 60 exercises. Like the G5, the Apex G1 folds for easy storage.
You have your choice when it comes to the best Total Gym.
The bottom line is that there’s one for everybody!