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    07 / Jan / 2022

    7 Tips on Safely Assembling and Using Your Squat Rack

    When setting up your home gym, you’ll need to take one other key factor into consideration: assembly. Almost all forms of large fitness equipment require installation or assembly.

    7 Tips on Safely Assembling and Using Your Squat Rack

    When you are planning out your home or commercial gym there are many barriers and questions you’ll be asking yourself.

    Other than the obvious of what kind of equipment you’d like to include in your workout space, you’ll need to take one other key factor into consideration: assembly. Almost all forms of large fitness equipment require installation or assembly.

    In some cases, depending on what you purchase you may be fortunate enough to have a fitness expert deliver and install select products for you. But in some situations, you may be faced with having to do some assembly, repair, or large-scale maintenance yourself.

    Since 1989, Akfit has operated as a Canadian specialty fitness store serving consumer and commercial clients. Our fitness experts are always here to help you understand what you are investing in, how to find space for your equipment, how to install it, and how to safely use it.

    Akfit also houses a large inventory of squat rack and power cages. Squat racks are a common piece of fitness equipment when it comes to strength training. They allow you to perform a variety of different strength training exercises safely and can provide even more versatile options for you when you pair your squat rack with a workout bench.

    In this article, we take a look at some key factors to consider when it comes to safely assembling and using a squat rack.

    In this article……

    1.       What is a Squat Rack?
    2.       Assembling Your Squat Rack
    3.       Equipment You Need to get the Most Out of Your Squat Rack
    4.       Proper flooring for Your Squat Rack
    5.       How to Safely Perform Squats with Your Squat Rack
    6.       Reach Out to Akfit

     

    What is a Squat Rack?

    Used for strength training, squat racks are a durable and versatile type of workout equipment that can be used  for weight lifting. Depending on how they are used, a squat rack can help people of all fitness levels achieve their goals. 

    Squat racks provide the ability to perform a wide variety of strength training exercises. They’re metal frames with J-hooks are designed to hold plates and lifting bars at a height you’re comfortable with, providing you with safe options to workout if you don’t have a spotter.

    Squat racks are a popular type of gym equipment most commonly found in a commercial gym. With this being said, squat racks are a great weight lifting option for a home gym as well.

    The most popular style of weight training that is commonly associated with squat racks is implied by the name … squats!  In addition to squatting exercises, you can also perform barbell lunges, standing overhead presses, deadlifts, and more, especially when paired with a workout bench.

    Safely Assembling Your Squat Rack: 7 Tips

    Whether it’s a rack, adjusting weights on an Olympic bar, assembling a treadmill or an elliptical, all forms of workout equipment are assembled differently. It’s always important to refer to your owner’s manual if you don’t have an expert helping you with the installation.

    However, if you choose to assemble your squat rack on your own, there are a few important tips that you should abide by.

    Ask for Help

    To ensure you are setting up your squat rack safely, consider assembling your rack with a friend or someone who can help you. With a second set of eyes, you will be able to spot any problems during the assembly process and avoid injury. 

    Make Sure the Rack is Levelled

    Lay your squat rack down on a flat surface to ensure that your rack is levelled. If your product is not levelled or on a levelled surface, your equipment may not be safe to use.

    Install Bolts Correctly & Use a Wrench

    When assembling your squat rack you should be inserting the bolts from the outside to the inside, with the large washer on the outside, and the lock washer and bolt towards the inside.

    Use a wrench to tighten all the bolts. This will stop bolts from coming loose.

    Assemble the Beams in Steps

    First, set the upright posts aside, and lay your two mounting beams on each side of the crossbar. Do this on the floor.

    With assistance, stand up the first upright on the middle of the side floor beam, match the appropriate spaces for the bolts. Next, assemble the bolt, washer, lock washer and nut to each space.

    Install the J-Hooks to Match your Height & Strength Level

    Make sure your J-Hooks are set up at an appropriate height that is safe and comfortable for you. These J-Hooks won’t be adjustable once installed so it’s important to measure out all height possibilities that are applicable to your strength training workouts.

    Adjust the Safety Pins to Your Lowest Squat Level

    Make sure you adjust your safety pin catches to your lowest squat level. This will ensure they won’t interfere with your lifting bar while you squat, but are still at an appropriate height in the event that you fall.

    Test Out the Durability 

    Finally, checkout the durability of your equipment when you are finished assembling the rack. You want to be absolutely positive that your squat rack is capable of withstanding the amount of weight that you intend for it to hold. Since these racks are meant to act as a spotter, you’ll want it to support even more weight than what you are lifting.

     

    Equipment You Need to Get the Most Out of Your Squat Rack

    Once your squat rack is safely installed, you will need the proper equipment to engage in a weight lifting workout routine. Some basic equipment include:

    • Multiple J-hooks
    • A weightlifting bar
    • A set of weight plates
    • Clips
    • Cushion / Bar Pad

    Proper Flooring for Your Squat Rack

    Although this may be overlooked, proper flooring is a very important element of a squat rack. Proper flooring not only protects the floor itself, it also protects the equipment and you!  

    At Akfit, we offer a few different rubber flooring selections for you to choose from. Generally the thicker the floor is, the more it is going to cost you. Considering that you will most likely be doing heavy lifting with your squat rack, you’ll want a very thick rubber floor so it can absorb the impact of your workout.

    The bare minimum thickness for Olympic lifting is ¾ inches, however if you can budget a flooring option that is 1 inch thick you will be providing yourself with a significantly safer option.

     

    How to Safely Perform Squats with Your Squat Rack

    As previously mentioned, the most common type of strength training associated with squat racks are squats. After all, the equipment’s name is inspired by the activity. However, there are some key elements you need to consider in order to perform squats safely and get the most out of your workout.

    •         Place your bar and plates on the j-hooks that are just below your shoulder height.
    •         Make sure to stand under your barbell to ensure it’s resting on your upper back.
    •         Your knees should be slightly bent so you can fit under the bar.
    •         Make sure your feet are shoulder widths apart.
    •         Extend your legs into an upright position lifting the bar from the hooks.
    •         Next you’ll want to stand back, moving the barbell away from the hooks.
    •         Once you are finished with your reps, step forwards towards the squat rack where the bar will          be resting along the frame.
    •         Bend your knees to bring your weight safely back to the hooks.

     

    Reach Out to Akfit

    If you feel like you are ready to invest in a squat rack (or a power rack) Akfit has got your back. We house a large selection of racks to choose from.

    If you are unsure about if a rack is right for you, we recommend you contact us and express your fitness goals, and concerns. Our fitness experts have specialized themselves in the fitness industry over the last three decades. They're able to help you find the proper equipment that is right for you.

    You can even request a delivery or an installation for your workout equipment. At Akfit, we don’t only assemble and deliver, but we also show you how to safely operate your equipment.

    If you choose to self-install your equipment, we highly recommend you book a virtual meeting with our representatives to help safely guide you with information you need to know when assembling your brand new strength training rack.


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