What do you get when you combine a pair of hi-tech resistance bands with an easy to use, instructor-led fitness app? The answer is the Gear1 Home Gym System.
I was lucky enough to get my hands on the Gear 1 for a test drive and I have to say- this thing works.
I was pleasantly surprised by both the quality of the bands and how fun and easy the app is to use. I was also impressed by the vast library of exercises and workouts available through the app.
Long-story-short: I think HyGear has a winner here.
If you’re looking for an affordable, portable strength training system that can offer all the exercise variety you can handle, the Gear 1 is a smart choice.
But like everything else in life, Gear 1 isn’t perfect.
In this review, I’ll go over everything this home gym has to offer, including all the pros and cons I encountered first hand through my own experience.
After reading, you’ll know everything you need to in order to decide whether or not HyGear 1 is a good fit for your home gym.
Disclaimer: The good people at HyGear were kind enough to send me a Gear 1 system to use for this review. This review is based entirely on my personal experience and I wasn’t compensated in any other way.
The HyGear Gear 1 Home Gym System
I hadn’t heard of HyGear (formerly HyFit) before they reached out to me for this review- I hadn’t seen any commercials or marketing materials from them or anything like that.
I get the impression they’re a fairly new company, but based on the quality of their Gear 1, I would bet they’re here to stay.
At the time of writing this review, the Gear 1 system is the only product they offer (although it wouldn’t surprise me if they expanded their lineup in the future).
I’ll go into more detail below, but in case you’re not exactly sure what the Gear 1 is, it’s really just a set of resistance bands and a fitness app.
“Big deal” you might think.
Resistance bands are a dime a dozen these days and there are tons of fitness apps to choose from, so what (if anything) sets HyGear apart from the rest?
Well, as they say, the devil is in the details.
Speaking of which, I think the easiest way for me to organize this review is if I break it up and talk about each component separately.
Let’s start with the most essential component to the Gear 1, which is obviously the set of resistance bands.
- High quality bands
- Adjustable resistance
- High quality accessories
- Door and portable anchors included
- Large variety of exercises available
- Bluetooth enabled to pair with app
- Data tracking
- Instructor-led workouts
- Easy to set up
- Fair warranty
- Fair price
- Resistance a bit light for some exercises
- App could use more workouts to choose from
Above I was playfully talking about what, if anything, sets HyGear’s resistance bands apart from every other band you’ve ever seen before.
Well, several things.
I can say without exaggeration, that these are the nicest resistance bands I’ve ever used.
With the Gear 1, you get a pair of black, tube resistance bands.
The bands themselves seem to be of very high quality, but unlike every other band I’ve ever seen, these bands are equipped with bluetooth technology.
There’s a smart sensor at one end of each band (PS- this is the end you connect to the anchor) that syncs with their fitness app.
This sensor allows the app to track all kinds of metrics and info about what you’re doing with each band (each band has its own sensor, so you’ll get info from each one).
I’ll go over the data the app tracks in more detail down below, but what I really like is that the sensor measures how much resistance the band is providing in real time.
Resistance bands offer variable resistance, meaning the actual “weight” that you’re working against changes throughout the movement.
As the band gets stretched farther, you feel more resistance.
This makes it difficult to estimate the weight equivalent of what you’re working against with traditional bands, but the Gear 1 shows you and records it in real time through the app.
I found this to be a very cool feature.
I also want to point out that it was really easy to connect the bands to the app.
After I downloaded the app and got it running, I just simply pushed the little button on the side of each sensor and my phone found them immediately.
So, the bluetooth sensor in each resistance band is a game changer for sure, but these bands also have something else I’ve never seen before- the option to adjust the resistance.
And I’m not talking about adjusting the band by stepping farther away from your anchor point.
No, there’s a slide adjuster on each band that allows you to adjust the resistance.
It works by essentially changing the length of the band without you having to step farther away.
As you slide the adjuster up the band, it doubles the band up, which makes it shorter.
This is a cool feature and in theory it sounds great- but I did have a few issues with it.
Well, I guess I only had one issue with it- I wish it provided more resistance.
Each band can provide anywhere between 5 – 28 lb, depending on how far it’s stretched. Even with the adjuster slid up for max resistance, you can’t get more than 28 lb from a single band.
I found that the adjuster will slide down the band (making it easier) if I applied more than 28 lb of force to the band.
This was a little disappointing.
Don’t get me wrong, there are a TON of exercises you can do with this system where 28 lb is more than enough resistance (this was more than obvious when I tried to do resisted mountain climbers…)
But for me, I was looking for a little more when doing exercises like rows, chest press, and bicep curls.
With a max output of 28 lb, I would consider these bands to be in the light to medium grade range, in terms of resistance.
I haven’t tried this yet, but as I write this it occurs to be that I should be able to double the bands up on a single handle to perform single extremity moves against more resistance…
Anyway, my biggest complaint about the Gear 1 would be that it would be nice if the bands could provide more resistance.
Otherwise, I think they’re great.
The bluetooth works perfectly and I think the ability to adjust each band’s resistance (without changing distance) is brilliant.
In the future, I hope HyGear comes out with additional smart bands at higher resistance levels (I don’t see why they wouldn’t).
I’m really impressed with the quality of the resistance bands, but I’m equally impressed with the quality of the accessories that are included.
With the pair of resistance bands, you also get:
- 2 handles
- 2 wrist cuffs
- 2 ankle cuffs
- Door anchor
- Portable anchor (wraps around stationary objects)
- Travel bag
The handles that come with the Gear 1 are awesome. They feel exactly like the high-end handles that came with my TRX and I love it.
The traditional handles are great, but the inclusion of the wrist and ankle cuffs really allow you to take your workouts to uncharted territories.
With these cuffs, you can anchor the bands to yourself, turning pretty much any kind of stretching/yoga/pilates move into a resisted exercise.
I mentioned the resistance mountain climbers earlier- I did this with the bands anchored on a door (near the floor) and connected to the ankle cuffs.
It was brutal.
Not only did I feel it in my hip flexors, but more core was on fire after a few reps on each side.
Speaking of which, I think the Gear 1 is very well equipped for core strengthening moves. And with these types of moves, you won’t need a lot of resistance.
It’s understandable that HyGear emphasizes the uniqueness of their bands, but honestly, I think the ankle/wrist cuffs are almost as good.
I could see using this system simply for the fact of how much exercise variety the cuffs provide- bluetooth or not.
Moving on, the door anchor is high quality too. It’s large, so you won’t have to worry about it slipping out accidentally (much like TRX’s).
I also like that they include a little door knob hanger you can place on your door, warning family members not to open during use.
The portable anchor allows you to take your Gear 1 outside, giving you a lot of options as to where you use it. Currently, my wife has ours anchored in our garage around a shelf post.
The charger (micro USB) and travel bag are fine too- I haven’t had to use either yet.
Overall, HyGear put a lot of attention to detail in their accessories and it shows. All of the cuffs and handles are high end and comfortable to use.
The HyGear app is free to download and easy to use.
The bluetooth connection from each band was easy to make, so once I got the order number from HyGear, it didn’t take long to get the app up and running.
One question that should come up immediately is whether or not HyGear is a paid membership program- the way I understand it is that it basically is.
You have 2 options when you purchase- you can do a one time payment of $199, which gets you 18 months of membership included or you can put nothing down and pay $15/month for a 12 month commitment.
How much does the membership cost after your initial 18 months?
I’m guessing $15/month, but I don’t know for sure.
The app itself is pretty sweet though.
I like how its organized- it’s very easy to navigate.
From the home screen, you can choose between “programs”, “workouts” or “exercises”.
The programs consist of several workouts and are designed to be performed over longer periods of time (21 days for example).
There are 5 or so to choose from at the time of writing this and they include things like strength, HIIT & Cardio, and weight loss.
The workouts section contains all the individual workouts that are parts of the programs. At the time of writing this, there are probably a few dozen to choose from.
The exercises section has short videos illustrating individual exercises and they’re organized by body part. Writing this, there are probably 50 or so to choose from.
All of the workouts/exercises are organized as instructor-led videos. The quality of the videos are good and the instructors obviously know what they’re doing.
Besides getting access to all of the workouts, membership to the app also allows you to track all of the workout data the sensors in the bands are tracking.
The app tracks a lot of different metrics- I haven’t been able to find the 25 metrics that HyGear reports on their website, but there are a lot.
During an exercise video, you’ll see the following metrics in real time: calories, max weight, total reps, pace, and power.
When you click on your statistics tab, you’ll find additional metrics like: total time spent, workouts completed, total rest duration, total reps, total weight, average weight, average pace, total calories, and total power.
The app also provides an ongoing tab for the amount of exercises you’ve done for each body part- pretty cool.
So far, I’ve found the calorie counter to be less than accurate.
Calorie burning stats are usually over estimated on all fitness machines, but according to the HyGear app, I burned like 8 calories doing 10 simple rows.
I wish I was burning those kind of calories.
Calorie over estimates aside, I’ve found the HyGear app to be really easy to use. The workouts they have are effective and it’s fun to see your stats throughout.
I would assume they’re going to continue adding new content, and I hope they do- right now their library is a lot smaller than the other big names in the fitness app world.
HyGear offers the following warranty on the Gear 1 system:
- 1 year hardware and parts
The way I understand it, this warranty covers everything- the bands, the accessories, and the sensors.
I think this is a pretty fair warranty for this product. Resistance bands, regardless of how nice they are, are going to break down with time and use- that’s just a reality.
Knowing this, (and considering the price) I think a year is a fair guarantee.
That about does it for the HyGear 1.
I’d like to thank HyGear for giving me the opportunity to try their home gym system out- I’ve enjoyed it so far and I plan on continuing to make it a part of my fitness routine.
Overall, I think this is a really nice resistance band system. It’s easily the highest-tech, nicest band set I’ve ever used before.
When I think about it, the Gear 1 makes me think of what you’d get if you combined a set of bands with a TRX. Like the TRX, you can use these bands anywhere with the door and portable anchors.
And the quality of the handles reminds me of TRX.
But unlike TRX, Gear 1 pairs with an app and tracks all of your workout data for you and stores it in an easy to read format.
And I’ll say it again- anchoring the bands to yourself with the ankle and wrist cuffs is a game-changer, especially when it comes to core workouts.
All things considered, I think the Gear 1 has a lot going for it- the quality of the system is high and I think it’s priced fairly.
My biggest complaint would be that I wish the bands were capable of providing more resistance, but I think that’s something HyGear could easily remedy with the option to purchase additional bands separately.
But if you’re looking for an affordable home gym system that’s easy to travel with, the HyGear 1 is a smart choice. (Use code “TheHomeGym” at checkout and save 15%).