Envisioning your own gym is one of the most fun steps: at this point in the process, you have nearly limitless possibilities. Yet, all of these options can seem overwhelming.
Envisioning your wall begins with selecting the space into which you will put your wall. This decision is followed by a careful examination of this space. A thorough examination will involve the following questions:
- Where will I put my wall? In a basement? In an attic? In a garage? Outside?
- What are the exact dimensions of the space?
- What are the fixed conditions of the space? Are there any pipes, ducts, wires or other structural items that will be in the way of my wall? Where will your wall stand relative to the entryway or door? Where are the wall studs located?
- What are the structural limitations of the space? To what will I anchor my wall’s frame? If I’m building a wall in my garage, will the existing framing be strong enough to support the wall?
- How much ventilation does the space have? Where are the light fixtures? Power outlets? Does the space have heat (or AC)?
After considering all of these questions carefully, you can begin to design your own wall. We recommend using a combination of your own ideas, your friends’ input, and sources of inspiration (your favorite gym walls or home gyms). Keep in mind the limitations and assets you will have such as:
- Your own carpentry skills
- The amount of help you will be able to attain, including grunt labor and design expertise
- The tools you’ll be able to use
- The materials you’ll use (i.e. be able to afford)
Unless you’re an engineer or skilled carpenter (in which case, you probably wouldn’t be reading this page anyway), you don’t want to go overboard with too many wall angles; not only will the frame be difficult to construct on a multifaceted wall, the various surface planes will be difficult to correctly cut and smoothly assemble together.
If you’re basing your gym off an existing wall or set of walls, it would behoove you to take photos of your source(s) of inspiration. As you’re drawing up concrete plans for your own gym and acquiring materials, these photos would serve as a great source of concrete information.
Once you have a general idea of your future gym, you can move into the more concrete design phase.
Habit Climbing recommends consulting with an engineer whenever building a home gym. Our ideas are for consideration only, and should not replace advice of an expert.