Many people out there would like to get in shape with weight training. However, many people have trouble getting started because they find the wide variety of weight training equipment available quite confusing and overwhelming. This article will help you learn about the basic types of weight lifting gear out there, so you can know what you are dealing with at the gym.

The first piece of equipment I would like to discuss are dumbbells. These are an essential building block of any weight training program. Dumbbells are simply short bars with weight at either end designed to be gripped with one hand. They are typically a one piece design, which yields a fixed weight (hence the name "dumbbells"). However, adjustable dumbbells are available. As a whole, dumbbells are great because they allow you to do all different types of exercises. Since they are held with one hand, you can use them for on armed exercises, or hold two and work both arms at the same time. To support a dumbbell in each hand, your body must recruit all sorts of balancing muscles, which gives you a better workout. Make dumbbells a part of your training routine now if you haven't already.

If you're looking to build serious strength, barbells might be up your alley. A barbell is simply a long bar to which weight plates can be attached at either end. These weight plates can be stacked to create massive amounts of weight. While many of the exercises you can do with a barbell can also be done with dumbbells, barbells allow you to lift heavier weights. Since there are few better ways of getting strong fast than lifting heavy (squats and deadlifts in particular), barbells are a part of most serious strength building programs.

However, barbells will often require special benches and racks to achieve properly, since the weight must be supported. A bench press bench holds the bar above you on a reclining bench that allows you to perform the exercise for which it is named. Similarly, a squat rack holds the bar off the ground, allowing you to step beneath it and squat the weight. There are many other weight lifting racks/benches available, but the bench and squat rack are the essentials for sure.

Your gym should have all of the weight training equipment mentioned above available, but if you are building up a home gym, you will want to focus on the basics. For many people, a basic set of dumbbells will serve to provide them with a broad range of excellent workout options. For those looking to take things to the next level and lift bigger, you will want to get a barbell, some weight plates, a bench, and a squat rack. Once you are equipped with all this equipment, you will be ready to do as much serious as weight training as you like. Best of luck in your workout endeavors.