If compound barbell exercises like bench press and squat are part of your fitness routine, then waiting half an hour for your turn at the rack is likely also part of your routine.
There are a number of reasons why building a home gym can be preferable to working out at a big box gym, but this is near the top of the list.
If you’re ready to take the plunge, this Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack review will give you a good idea of what’s out there.
Is it the best power rack money can buy?
Many users gave it a 4 out of 5 stars.
And depending on your circumstances, it might be a good choice for you.
- Relatively compact, even for a half-rack; great for small spaces
- Can be adjusted for squats, benches, deadlifts, and everything in between
- Sturdy and stable without being nailed down
- Easy to put together by yourself and avoid assembly fees
- Pull up bar
- More limiting than a full rack
- 14-gauge steel is weaker than the standard 11-gauge of most competitors
Your first question when considering any power rack is probably how much weight it can support. The Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack’s weight capacity clocks in at a respectable 600 lbs.
That might seem low considering many power racks advertise a 1000 lb weight capacity, but 600 lbs is still a reasonable limit.
Especially considering that there have been many cases where other racks break at weights well under the supposed 1000 lb max. The Fitness Gear Pro, on the other hand, consistently holds up at 600.
You may not use all 28 levels of adjustability, but it’s nice to have the range. No matter how tall you are, this half rack should have a setting that allows you to do any exercise comfortably. The same goes for its multiple grip positions for pull-up and grip training.
The rack’s wide, flanged feet lend it plenty of stability even without being nailed down or fastened in any way.
Though it does not come with a bar or any plates, it does have 6 horizontal posts for olympic plate storage.
Finally, it has spotter arms designed to catch dropped bars. These should never be relied on completely and it is still wise to have a human spotter present, but the added touch of safety is always nice.
The Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack is solid overall, though it is stronger in some areas than others.
Capacity and Versatility
Constructed of 14-gauge steel and built for a 600 lb capacity, this is definitely not the most powerful rack out there.
After all, it is a half rack.
This rack might be more limited than a top-of-the-line full rack, but that will not make any difference for any but the most monstrous powerlifters.
If you’re a beginner benching under 200 lbs, you will get way more out of this rack’s adjustability than you would out of a higher capacity unit.
When you buy a power rack, you usually end up paying an extra $100 or more just to have someone put it together for you. However. this rack can be easily put together yourself in under half an hour.
Even for a half rack, it is relatively compact, so if space is an issue this might be a good choice for you.
The included pull up bar allows you to grip the bar in several different configurations, which will add a great deal of versatility to your vertical pull workouts.
Finally, the ample storage for olympic plates means you will not have to buy another piece of equipment just to store those.
Durability and Safety
It might be constructed of 14-gauge steel, but this rack will still hold up to normal use for years.
The flanged feet keep it stable even with rough use, and the spotter arms provide additional safety.
As long as you do not exceed the intended weight capacity, you can use this rack with confidence.
This is probably the least of your concerns when buying a power rack, but this one does look nicer than most of its competitors.
That might come in handy if you share your space with family members who are hesitant to have large gym equipment in the house.
Admittedly, to those who don’t work out, most power racks look like medieval torture devices. But at least the Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack has a more appealing look to it than most.
How Does It Compare?
The most obvious competitor is Fitness Gear’s own full rack (no longer available)
If you have the space for it and just have to have that extra power, you might spring for that instead.
The York 48053 FTS Power Cage is less adjustable than this rack but does offer the option of a Hi-Low pulley.
If you are especially short or tall, the Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack will be more comfortable, but the Power Cage’s pulley offers a more complete workout with a single machine.
Finally, the Titan T-3 Series Power Rack is a beast of a machine constructed of 11-gauge steel that comes with J-hooks and a 1000 lb capacity.
Serious powerlifters might get more out of that rack, but beginners might be better served by the Fitness Gear Pro Half Rack.