Mechanical and Structural Requirements

Some exercise equipment and audio visual equipment require electrical connections and wiring considerations. Most home equipment requires 120 volts and 20 amps, but some commercial equipment may require dedicated 240-volt receptacles. Floor receptacles may be desirable to re­duce tripping hazards from cords. Some exercise equipment is oversized and the entry door needs to be planned to get the equipment in the room. Some exercise equipment is very heavy. Make sure the floor of the exercise area can handle the weight. In addition, the floor needs to be stiff enough to handle the stress of jumping and pounding from exercise activities.

Consider cushioning the entire floor with a dense mat to protect it and to help prevent transmission of sound to areas below, caused by jumping, loud music, or dropped weights. In addition, wall construc­tion and/or treatment should be planned to limit sound transmission to adjacent rooms. See chapter 2, "Infrastructure Considerations" for more information on sound transmission through walls.

Use indirect lighting to avoid glare when the user is in a variety of positions. Fluorescent lamps do not put out as much heat as halogen or incandescent lamps. Avoid ceiling-mounted or hanging light fixtures or pendants that could accidentally be damaged during exercises. See chapter 7, "Mechanical Planning," for more information about lighting.

Plan for proper ventilation that will remove moisture and odor released into the air by exercising bodies. Information about ventilation is included in chapter 7.

Space Planning for Exercise

Use the anthropometric stature and body breadth measurements found in Chapter 4, "Human Factors and Universal Design Foundation," as a guideline when figuring minimum floor space for exercises such as situps and pushups. Form 1: Getting to Know Your Client can help you obtain information about your clients’ measurements. The client’s side arm reach, forward thumb tip reach, vertical grip reach, and buttocks-leg length should also be considered when planning for stretching or calisthenics. These are a minimum.

Mechanical and Structural RequirementsПодпись: FIGURE 9.18 Consider the space needed to stretch out on the floor and to conduct exercise while standing. The range of measurements given is for small women to tall men. Based on Human Dimension & Interior Space by Julius Panero and Martin Zelnik, 1979, Watson-Guptill Publications.
When possible, use human body measurements from the largest percentile. If more than one person is using the space, plan for clearance between people. Human Dimension and Interior

Space recommends 3 inches (76 mm) to 6 inches (152 mm) between two persons’ arms extended to the side. Keep in mind that exercise implies movement, and someone who is exercising may not remain centered in the space. Be generous with clearances.

Ceiling Heights

In no other space in the home is ceiling height as critical as in the exercise area. This is especially true when an exercise program includes activities such as jumping jacks, jumping rope, or plyomet – rics, which may include jumping up and down on boxes or platforms. Dancing that includes lifts of another person requires a recommended ceiling height of 12 feet (144 inches; 3658 mm).


Sizes: To develop the space plan and to determine if the space is adequate, measure the existing equipment or obtain manufacturer’s specifications on new equipment, just as you would for other fixtures and appliances in a bathroom.

The American Council on Exercise (ACE) has guidelines that can quickly help determine the space needed for common exercise equipment.

• Treadmills: 30 square feet (2.9 square meters)

• Free weights: 20 to 50 square feet (1.9 to 4.6 square meters)

• Bikes, recumbent and upright: 10 square feet (0.9 square meters)

• Rowing machines: 20 square feet (1.9 square meters)

• Stair climbers: 10 to 20 square feet (0.9 to 1.9 square meters)

• Ski machines: 25 square feet (2,3 square meters)

• Single-station gym: 35 square feet (3.3 square meters)

• Multistation gym: 50 to 200 square feet (4.6 to 1.9 square meters)

Clearances: In addition to the dimension of the equipment, you must also provide a clear path of travel between each piece of equipment. There should be 30 inches (762 mm) minimum clearance or 36 inches (914 mm) if the client uses a mobility aid. Also consider how much additional space is needed for an exercise. For example, you may need to measure the length of the leg that extends past the bench during a leg extension strength exercise.

If a game system is used to provide instructions and feedback for exercise or dancing, generous clearance space should be provided for the space to work properly and for the movement involved in exercises. The user will need to be 3 feet (914 mm) to 10 feet (3048 mm) away from the sensor on the game system. Space in that area should also be large enough that the user can perform the movements promoted in the games. Also, these games are enjoyed by multiple users, requiring more space.


Like most activities, exercising requires "things" and they may need to be stored within, or close to, the exercise space. The section on closets provides some details for planning these spaces, but make sure you determine if the following are needed, and how they are being provided.

• Closets for equipment if it is stored after each use, or if an exercise area is to be used for a separate function

• A locker area for clothes, shoes, and accessories such as towels or water bottles

• A bench or place to sit for putting on shoes and socks

• A hamper for used clothes, socks, and towels

• Storage near exercise equipment for reading material such as books, magazines, or newspapers

• Storage for games, CDs, or DVDs the home spa

The luxury of the spa experience is being captured in the homes of many clients seeking re­laxation and pampering. The popularity of day spas and resort spas has many consumers seeking their own space for caring for mind, body, and soul. The home spa will be very indi­
vidualized, depending on the client’s desires. Different types of activities and equipment can be included, and the space can grow out of an existing bath or become a featured space in the home.

Some of the special features in a spa bath that provide hydrotherapy are a whirlpool tub, a soaking tub, a steam room, sauna, a massage table, and a chaise or sofa. Other spa activities could include chromatherapy and aromatherapy. Spaces for yoga and meditation might also be included in this space.

There are many considerations that must be addressed when designing a spa. Some of the infor­mation is gathered in the client assessment (chapter 5, "Assessing Needs"), but there may be some special questions such as:

• What type of spa activities would the client like to engage in? Clients may request activities that they have experienced in a resort or day spa, such as steam baths, massages, and saunas. Do they want to accommodate just one activity or multiple experiences?

• Who will be using the home spa? Will the spa be used by the adults or shared by family and guests? How many people will be using the spa at any one time? A soaking bath may be a private activity for one, while a spa tub might be used by a group. An assistant may come in to give a massage or pedicure.

Updated: October 11, 2015 — 5:54 pm