Finding the perfect rack isn’t easy. Should you get a squat rack, a power rack, a squat cage, a power cage? I’m going to use all four of those terms interchangeably because they’re all practically* the same thing.
I’ve narrowed down some of the best weight racks to these 5.
*I’m covering my ass by saying practically. Yes, there are official/technical differences. Yes, there are people those differences matter to. If you’re one of them, sorry, but you’re in the minority around here. For our purposes, just buy what will work best for you regardless of the name.
|Sunny Health & Fitness Power and Squat Rack|
|F2C Adjustable Rack Pair|
Best for Tiny Spaces
|Fitness Reality 810XLT Super Max Power Cage|
|Body Champ Bench and Squat Rack Stand Combo|
Best with a Bench
|CAP Barbell Rack Stand|
Best on a Budget
Our Best Weight Rack Picks
What did we choose as our 5 best? Check it out – along with some pros and cons!
Best Overall: Sunny Health & Fitness Power and Squat Rack
Weight Capacity: 880 pounds | 399 kg
Height: 7 feet | 213 cm
Pull-Up Bar: yes: 500-pound / 226kg weight capacity
Plate Storage: yes, Olympic
The Sunny Health & Fitness Power and Squat Rack is a high-quality, feature-packed rack. This rack has so many amazing features: a knurled pull-up bar, spotter arms, exercise-band attachments, highly adjustable, and more.
|Safety: the rack offers 2 excellent safety features. It has 16″ spotter arms and J-hooks to make sure your bar never rolls off the rack.|
Height Options: the rack has 30 adjustment points that you can set the bar at. This is great for people of all heights but also great for a wide variety of exercises.
Extras: there are so many extras on this rack! It has a landmine post that swivels (great for core exercises), there are posts to attach resistance bands (great for adding additional resistance), the pull-up bar is knurled for added grip, and it has storage for your weight plates.
|Olympic Storage: This rack has storage (yaay) but it’s only for Olymic plates (boo). If you have Olympic plates (2″ hole), this will be no big deal for you. If you have standard plates (1″), you’ll have to store them somewhere else.|
You can make a post wider but you can’t make it thinner. IMO, this should have Standard Plate storage with an optional attachment to make it usable for Olympic plates. Then, it would be usable for everyone.
The Sunny Health & Fitness Power and Squat Rack is a great option rack for almost everyone. It offers a ton of features that will make your home gym amazing!
Best for Tiny Spaces: F2C Adjustable Rack Pair
Weight Capacity: 550 pounds | 249 kg
Height*: 40-66″ | 101-167 cm
Pull-Up Bar: no
Plate Storage: no
If you’re low on space for a home gym, this adjustable rack is going to be your best friend. Instead of a one-piece rack, this is two pieces that you can easily move around. This makes storing it out of the way much easier.
|Safety: the rack has 6.5″ spotter arms and J-hooks to make sure your bar never rolls off the rack. These are great safety features!|
Free Standing: each side of the rack is free standing. This means you can move them closer & further apart. It also means you can store them much easier than fixed racks.
|Stability: as you start to use it for heavier weights, it can become a touch unstable.|
The simple solution is to put some weights (or sandbags) on the base of each stand. This will not interfere with your workout, however, it will make it less convenient to move/store the stands.
*This is only an issue for some exercises when you get into those triple-digit weights.
The F2C Adjustable Rack Pair is a great choice for a small home gym or a tiny home where it will need to be stored. It works great with (or without) a bench and will give you many additional exercise options.
Best Cage: Fitness Reality 810XLT Super Max Power Cage
Weight Capacity: 800 pounds | 362 kg
Height: 7 feet | 213 cm
Pull-Up Bar: yes
Plate Storage: optional add-on
A power cage is great if you want to perform heavy lifting. It’s also the safest option for working out alone. This Fitness Reality cage is a sturdy (but basic) cage with plenty of add-on options.
|Safety: The cage has 2 safety bars across the back to add strength and stability to it. It also has a set of safety bars that stretch the entire length of the cage.|
Pull-Up Bars: This cage has a multi-position chin-up/pull-up bar system at the top. There are two bars in each direction giving you multiple places to put your hands for a variety of Ups.
Add-Ons: There are several add-ons you can purchase to make your cage even better.
You can purchase Olympic weight plate storage holders (unfortunately, no Standard).
There is an optional lat-pulldown attachment that can be purchased. It’s a pricey add-on but a quality pulley system.
You can also get dip bars and a landmine attachment to add some versatility to your cage.
|Hooks: It comes with standard hooks. If you want J-hooks (which are a safer option), you have to purchase them separately.|
Height Adjustments: This rack only has 19 height adjustment holes. For most people that will be more than enough but I think they should have drilled some more to be comparable with other options.
Add-Ons: I know I wrote this as a PRO, and it is. It’s great that you can get these things. However, if you want them all it feels frustrating that you have to pay and pay and pay. They should offer an all-in-one package (at a discount).
The Fitness Reality 810XLT Super Max Power Cage is a solid cage with plenty of flexibility to suit you and your home gym needs.
Best with a Bench: Body Champ Bench and Squat Rack Stand Combo
Weight Capacity: 600* pounds | 272* kg
Height: 6’9″ feet | 175 cm
Pull-Up Bar: no
Plate Storage: no
If you don’t have a weight bench already, the Body Champ Combo is a great way to get a bench and a rack at the same time. They’re detached from each other so you can use each piece independently, or use them together!
*Weight capacity maximums are 300 pounds bodyweight + 300 pounds of weights. The leg extension has a maximum weight of 150 pounds.
|Safety: The rack uses J-hooks to keep the barbell from ever rolling off and squishing you (or your foot, or hitting the floor, etc).|
Value: The price you’re paying for a bench and rack is a great value.
Easily Moved (and Stored): the bench has wheels and a foldable design so it can be easily stored in a small space. The stand is a separate piece and also easy to move out of the way for storage.
|No 90° Angle: The bench doesn’t adjust to a 90° angle. This isn’t a position that’s used very often, so it’s probably not something critical. But you should be aware.|
Low Weight: A 300-pound weight limit for the rack is pretty low compared to other racks on the market (and this list).
The Body Champ Bench and Squat Rack Stand Combo is a great entry level rack (and bench) combo to start furnishing your home gym.
Best on a Budget: CAP Barbell Rack Stand
Weight Capacity: 500 pounds | 226 kg
Height: 7 feet | 213 cm
Pull-Up Bar: yes (750 pounds / 340 kg weight capacity)
Plate Storage: limited (only one vertical post which stores Olympic plates)
If you’re on a budget and want a simple rack, this one will do. There’s nothing special or fancy happening here. Just a basic stand for all your barbell (and pull-up) needs.
The CAP Barbell Stand is made of 11 and 12 gauge steel.
|Safety: The stand has J-hooks to keep the barbell from rolling off the rack and damaging your or your floor.|
Price: This is a basic, no-frills, budget rack option. It fulfills the basic needs quite well and is inexpensive.
|Wobble: If you don’t bolt this into the ground (and how many people are actually doing that?!), it can be a bit wobbly. Not dangerously-so but enough to make you tighten your core for some added stability (so maybe a hidden pro?).|
The CAP Barbell Rack Stand is a solid budget option in the weight rack field. Give it a try!
Weight Rack Buying Guide
Here are some of the most important features to consider when buying a squat rack.
There are things in life that you can go with cheap or inferior quality construction – your weight rack shouldn’t be one of them. This is a piece of equipment that you are going to load hundreds of pounds of weight on. Then, you might get under that weight in some way (bench presses, squats, whatever). The last thing you want is your rack breaking. Quality constuction matters, but what does that mean?
The gauge of steel is how thick it is – smaller gauges are thicker.
7 gauge (3/16″) is the thickest steel you’ll find for a rack. This is what commercial gyms purchase but your home gym isn’t a commercial gym so you don’t need to go this far. 7 gauge steel construction will come with a very premium price tag.
11 gauge (1/8″) is the most common steel used in quality home gym racks. Keep this in mind because it’s a selling feature of inexpensive racks. If the rack doesn’t mention the gauge, it’s because it’s thinner than this.
That’s not to say that a thinner gauge isn’t good enough for your home gym. But, this is something to be aware of – especially if you lift very heavy weights.
Our budget barbell choice (the CAP Barbell Rack Stand) is the only rack on our list that stated its gauge. It uses 11 and 12 gauge steel in construction.
Not all racks will tell you their steel gauge. But they will all tell you their weight capacity. The more weight a rack can hold, the stronger (and likely more durable) it is.
Our rack choices had a range of maximum weight capacities from 500 to 880 pounds.
Be safe – especially if you’re working out alone!
Every rack needs some kind of hooks to hold the barbell on the rack. There are two kinds: standard and J hooks.
Standard hooks are flat. J-Hooks are shaped like a J with the curved end going upwards so that your barbell can’t roll off the stand and smash your foot (or floor).
J-Hooks are a safety essential. If your rack doesn’t come with them (or comes with a poor quality J Hook), they’re easy to purchase.
Make sure that your J-Hooks have the same (or higher) max weight capacity as your weight rack. What good is an 800-pound rack capacity if your safety features (like J Hooks) are only good for 300 pounds? None.
4 of our choices come standard with J Hooks (the Sunny Health & Fitness Rack, the F2C Adjustable Rack Pair, the Body Champ Rack, and the CAP Barbell Stand). The Fitness Reality Cage has J-Hook add-ons you can purchase.
Safety bars are bars that extend lower than your barbell. They’re there to catch your barbell if you drop it. A cage-style weight rack will typically have bars that extend fully across the cage.
Like J-Hooks, you want safety bars that can hold the same (or higher) max weight capacity as your weight rack.
The more height increments your rack can be positioned in, the more precise you can be in training. This is especially important if it’s going to be used by people of different heights.
Bonus points if the increments on the rack are numbered (or have enough room for you to sharpie numbers on yourself).
Does the weight rack come with storage? Is that storage right for your equipment?
Weight racks can offer storage for a variety of things: weight plates, bars, chains, collars, and more. Check your needs and what each rack offers.
Keep in mind, if a weight rack has storage for plates, it’s likely for Olympic Plates.
Our best overall pick (the Sunny Health & Fitness Rack) comes with built-in storage for Olympic plates. Our budget pick (the CAP Barbell Stand) has limited Olympic plate storage and storage for 1 bar. Our best cage (the Fitness Reality Cage) has optional add-on Olympic storage.
Add-Ons & Extra Features
There’s an unlimited number of add-ons and extras available for racks. It’s up to you if you want some of these most popular ones.
Resistance Band Pegs
Having resistance band pegs increases the versatility of your rack. If they’re on the top, you can add resistance to pulling and pushing moves. If they’re on the bottom, you can add resistance to squats. If they’re on the bottom at the floor, you can use them for a variety of resistance band exercises.
Our best overall pick (the Sunny Health & Fitness Rack) has resistance band pegs along on the bottom.
It’s possible to perform pull-ups on the top of many racks. If this is something that’s important to you, make sure that your ceiling is tall enough and check the pull-up bars weight capacity.
Racks can also include many extras (permanently affixed or additional add-ons) like platforms, dip attachments, cable attachments, landmines, additional storage, and more.
Choosing the Best Weight Rack for Your Home Gym FAQ
Answers to your most frequently asked questions about weight racks.
Can I Buy a Used Weight Rack?
Of course! I love purchasing used and there are some great deals to be had.
However, be sure to examine it closely. Is everything straight, how much wear and tear do you see, are there are any cracks? Ideally, you’ll want to actually TEST the equipment. Does it wobble or feel unstable?
What are Some Good Exercises I Can Do with a Weight Rack?
You’re going to be so happy you added a rack to your home gym! Check out:
- 9 Ways to Use a Squat Rack from Mira Fit
- Top Rack Exercises from Fit Body Buzz
- Or this Full-Body Squat Rack video from Bodybuilding.com
It’s Selection Time: Pick the Best Weight Rack for YOU!
A weight rack is a great addition to any home gym. It will offer a ton of versatility to help you get into the best shape of your life.
Be sure to choose a weight rack that’s stable, fits your space, and your budget! Which weight rack did you choose and why? Let me know in the comments below!
Now that you’ve picked out the best dumbbells for your home gym, you’re going to want to Choose the Best Deadlift Wedge next.
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