How Do I Lighten Up My Basement Gym?

October 24, 2022 8 min read

female working out using oversized ropes in a dark basement gym setting

A home gym is every weight watcher’s and physically active individuals’ dream. However, there’s always the question of where to put the gym. For many homeowners, the best available spot may be in the basement. 

But let’s face it, your basement is probably covered in darkness and obscurity. Nevertheless, you don’t have to worry since you can put up a simple yet powerful lighting system in your basement gym with ease. 

To lighten up your basement gym you can upgrade the lighting with easy to install retrofit LED lighting, paint the walls and floor, install mirrors, and just clean up and declutter your space. 

Retrofit lights work well with an unfinished basement where you don’t have to perform professional-level lighting installation.

Lights used in home gyms need not be fancy or complicated. It simply has to meet the basic requirements in terms of the degree of illumination, ease of installation, bulb type, power source, etc. 

Nonetheless, it’s great to know that lighting fixtures like STKR Concept’s MPITriLight, and TriLight Shoplight cover both aesthetics and efficiency.

Learn more about lighting up your basement gym as you read on. 

 

unfinished basement

How Do You Lighten an Unfinished Basement?

Let’s face it. It’s rare for natural light to reach the basement. So, of course, you’ll just have to rely on artificial lights. 

But you can ditch the standard flashlight when lighting an unfinished basement because innovative lighting solutions are here to stay.

To light an unfinished basement, you’ll need modern bulbs or lighting devices you can install without needing a technician. 

Look for bulbs, lighting fixtures, or devices that can simply be hooked or screwed to a regular light bulb socket. Otherwise, you could face some trouble with needing to hire an electrician to come out and hard wire in specialized lighting.

How Can I Lighten My Basement Gym?

With an area that’s a bit distant from natural light like a basement gym, you need to carefully think about your lighting options. After all, it could be a critical factor in your regular use of the home gym. 

So, to make sure you get enough light in your basement gym, consider the following tips. 

  • Go for a powerful bulb or lighting system

When natural light is out of reach, your best choice is to maximize the use of artificial light.

However, unlike your living room or kitchen, lighting in the basement may have to take another direction. 

For one, the bulb has to be installed with ease and the entire system needs to secure enough coverage leaving no part of the basement unlit. 

That being said, you can rely on the following lighting systems,

man installing an MPI multi point illumination on his ceiling

Multi-Point Illumination (MPI)

You can forget about having a professional electrician install your lighting system when you can do it yourself. 

The Multi-Point Illumination (MPI) consists of five points of light providing full room illumination from a single standard bulb fixture. 

All you have to do is twist that old standard light bulb out and then twist in the base of the MPI. Then you can attach the four satellite light pods to the base, pull them away from the base up to 9.5 feet, and then attach them to the ceiling drywall or bare floor joist using the two provided screws, and you’re done.

You can spread light out with these five points to every corner of the basement. This means you can do your workout routine or exercise under grand light that illuminates up to a total of 7500 true lumens. That’s a whole lot more than that standard bulb that usually comes in at 800 lumens.

If you have a small basement, you can still position the light points without loose cable as the satellite pods have a built-in cable management system. 

Additionally, MPI has a motion sensor that you can easily adjust that lets you walk into a lit basement without fumbling for a light switch. You can just walk into the basement ready to start your workout.

 

gif video of a Trilight screwing into a standard lightbulb socket

TriLight Motion Activated Ceiling Light

Once you understand the importance of good lighting in a basement gym, you won’t want to settle for less. Now here’s a light that’s essentially a super-bulb and is the easy button of basement/garage lighting upgrades. 

The TriLight Motion Activated Ceiling Light is made of LED lights attached to three adjustable aluminum heads. Those 3 heads all pivot from a base that has standard light bulb threads on the bottom. This way, you can position the heads to direct the light into different beam angles that best match the space you need lit up.

The ease of installation is an area where this light really shines. There are no tools required as you just unscrew the old standard lightbulb by hand, and then twist the Tri-Light up into the socket also by hand. This upgrade can literally be done in less than a minute. 

With 4,000 lumens, you’re sure to get the much-needed light for your basement gym. 

It also has an added bonus that your electrical bill won’t blow up despite the high-intensity lighting of the TriLight considering how energy efficient it is using only 24 watts of power. 

Likewise, it has a motion sensor eliminating the need for turning it on and off manually. 

 

gif video of a product 360 rotation of a Trilight shoplight

TriLight Shoplight

The TriLight Shoplight is not your average shoplight. With its durable and sturdy construction, you get the assurance that this shoplight lasts for a long time. It takes is design cues from the Tri-Light mentioned above but instead of screwing into a light bulb socket, it has grip handle with a power cord coming out the bottom.

Likewise, it’s built with a hook on its end so you can hang it without the need for professional installation. 

But what’s interesting about this shoplight is that it could transform into a droplight giving about 360 degrees of illumination. 

Moreover, it can produce 3000 true lumens providing a sort of daylight atmosphere inside your home gym. 

If you’re using an unfinished basement as your gym or workout corner, then the TriLight Shoplight is a perfect match for the said condition. It’s also painless to install. Plus you can move it from one area to another with ease. 

 

female looking in a gym mirror at herself as she goes to pickup free weights

  • Place a mirror in the basement gym

Mirrors are pretty common in gyms. In fact, you would often see a gym surrounded by mirrors that almost cover the entire interior walls. 

However, contrary to popular belief, adding mirrors inside the gym is not just for vanity or keeping track of your progress. It’s also to maximize the light inside the gym. 

Hence, we take the same concept with an unfinished basement gym. 

Mirrors reflect light regardless of how low the level of illumination is. Therefore, adding mirrors in a dark room can intensify the light produced from even a single source. 

With that, you should consider installing mirrors on one side of the wall. If you have the time and budget to fill the interiors with walls, then, by all means, do it. Nonetheless, even a single medium-to-large-sized mirror will suffice to increase the brightness in your basement gym. 

 

paint brushes and roller

  • Paint the walls with a lighter color

Another way to invite more light inside your home gym is to ensure that the walls are painted with a lighter color.

Most basements start with a dark material like concrete or cylinder block. Giving those surfaces a bit of lite color will go a long way in brightening up the room.

Stir clear from colors that are too destructive that could absorb or block the spread of light such as red, dark blue, strong gray, etc. Instead, consider colors with warm neutral tones like powder blue, lavender, sage green, and more. 

But if you’re confused about which color to pick, you can always start with white or eggshell.  

 

very messy basement
  • Don’t forget to declutter

Most basements are meant for storage. Therefore, turning it into a home gym could require a bit of work in terms of clearing the room. After all, you will be putting up workout equipment and tools that aren’t exactly compact and portable.

So, if you leave items and other forms of clutter around, you might be hindering proper lighting as those items will create more shadows and also just make the room feel smaller.

Invest in or DIY some proper shelving and get the space cleaned up before making it into a home gym to really maximize your basement workouts.  

 

person out of frame installing new flooring. Illuminated by a Tri-Mobile from STKR Concepts

  • Keep your flooring color light

It’s easy to neglect the flooring in an unfinished basement. However, if you’re building a home gym in the basement, it’s time to pay more attention to the board or concrete you step on.

For starters, choose a floorboard capable of bearing the weight of everything in your home gym. You could go for wood or tiles depending on the material strength and your aesthetic choice. 

Next, make sure that the floorboard has a lighter color to invite more light. Otherwise, you miss the opportunity of maximizing light without the need for an additional lighting system - and by extension, additional investment. 

Floor color contributes to the diffusion of light or how you perceive light in general. Therefore, don’t forget to cover your floors when renovating the basement or turning it into a home gym. 

 

egress window in a basement

  • Add natural light by installing egress windows

This option is last on the list here because it is definitely is the most expensive option and the hardest project on the list. Adding an egress window starts with a lot of digging.

Before taking on something like this it will require you to obtain a permit and call to have someone come out and mark your undergound lines.

After hand digging a five plus foot hole on the side of the house, you then need a very expensive concrete saw that will let you cut out a giant window sized hole in your basement wall.

Now that a load bearing wall has just been cut into. You need to reframe that hole with the proper framing material making sure that your header is strong enough to hold that section of house up. All of these details will be lined out on the permit and each checkpoint along the way will need signed off on by a qualified inspector.

I’m sure you get the idea that this one is neither quick, easy, nor light on the budget. To get that daylight feel it can be a lot easier to just upgrade to newer LED technology.

Summary

Nobody likes to work out in the dark. So, when looking for unfinished basement gym lighting, always consider the installation procedure, illumination intensity, and other factors. 

The ideal home gym light does not simply improve your visibility but also provides an atmosphere that keeps you motivated when exercising. It has to be sturdy and incredibly efficient. 

Surely, you can find these qualities with STKR Concepts’ lighting solutions. Whether you go for the Multi-Point Illumination (MPI)TriLight Motion Activated Ceiling Light, or TriLight Shoplight, you’ll get optimized lighting using LED technology.

Related Products

gym skins hand reaching at camera poster

Like working out but not a big fan of the damage it can cause on your hands. Check out our Gym Skins right here at STKR Concepts. Unlike a full gym glove, the Gym Skins are designed to only cover your palm protect the areas that are most prone to calluses.

Because it’s not a full glove, your hands will stay cooler and your hand protection won’t collect all of that sweat down inside leading to buildup and smells. The Gym Skins eliminate those issues are easy to get on and off and stay cleaner for longer.

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