There’s just nothing better than working out in a pitch-black room where you’re always striving to avoid your many pieces of workout equipment, said NO ONE ever! When we’re doing our workout routines, we want to actually see what we’re doing, see where all of our equipment is, and exercise in a room that doesn’t make us want to fall asleep. We know the key to that is in the lighting, but how should we light up our home gyms?
After Natural Light, the best way to light up a home gym is to use bulbs between 4600K - 6500K, in Kelvin, and emit a light output that’s between 2,000 and 10,000 lumens. This kind of light resembles daylight, making the owner alert and ready to focus on their workout routine.
To learn how to imitate your favorite gymnasiums and health centers in top lighting, we’ll go over what lights have the best light spread, what color light works the best, and more.
Why do Gyms Have Good Lighting?
Really professional gymnasiums and fitness centers take the effort to invest in the best lighting for their particular building. It’s crucial for them to get the lighting right because members can decide to look for another fitness center or gym if the lighting makes the area look unappealing or dangerous.
Here’s an extreme example for you, because I’m always extreme. Would you work out in a place with dingy-looking yellow lights that are spaced out so far apart, only half the area looks lit? If you like to go to the gym at night would you work out in a place that would make you feel like you are about to be mugged? Gyms need lighting that imitates daylight.
The idea behind this is that we follow a circadian rhythm, as many creatures do. That’s our wake/sleep cycle in a period of 24 hours. Since most of us are awake during the day and asleep during the night, our bodies are accustomed to this routine and then control our wakefulness by pumping us with energy as the day gets brighter, and then with melatonin as it gets dark, to help us sleep. What the lights in gyms need to do is imitate daylight to trigger our internal clocks and reinvigorate our bodies and get us ready to work out.
To do the same, consider two factors: the color of the lights, and the brightness of the lights.
What LED Light Color is Best for Working Out?
First is the color. It’s been documented in numerous studies that color influences your mood and alertness with consistent success. Now that we know we want bright daylight-mimicking lights to wake us up and keep us alert, what color does it the best?
Would you be surprised if I told you it wasn’t yellow? Sure, it might help improve your mood which would give you a slight energy boost, but if those yellow lights are fluorescent bulbs they aren’t going to give you the lumens you need to flood your space with energizing brightness, and rather than lift your spirits, they look dingy and suspicious.
According to multiplesources, installing blue lights stimulates the best focus and gets the energy flowing through you. Now, I’m not talking about a deep blue light. What I’m actually talking about is the blue light that is actually white light that has such a high Kelvin temperature that it has a blue hue. Are you staying with me? Kelvin is the unit of measurement for color temperature in light, abbreviated as K.
This color of light simulates daylight, which is why you become more energized in it. You’ll start to get a bluish tint at 3500K but you won’t get the benefits until the Kelvin reading for the bulb is between 4600K and 6500K. Past that will give you a terrifically bright blue hue that commercial businesses use for warehouses and such.
How Much Light do You Need?
Whether you’re converting your garage space to be a home gym or hijacking a room in the house to be a workout room, we’ve talked about how you can actually calculate the amount of light you need in a similar article on our website. Let’s see if I can give you the cliff notes. One of the most common sizes of an American garage is 12ft wide by 20ft. We’ll use these dimensions for our example.
If one candle flame has the equal light output of 12 lumens and we want the space to be nice and bright, we need to be able to measure how many lumens we need per square foot. Luckily for us, lux do just that. One lux is the equivalent of 1 lumen per square ft.
The gymnasium used for a high school campus will usually be about 50ft x 84ft and typically lit somewhere between 322 and 536 lux. You may have a smaller space, but if you want the same measure of brightness, you just have to use a simple formula.
Use x = y/z where x is the lux desired (say, 370 lux), y is the amount of lumens you would need to reach the lux you want, and z is the area of your space in square meters. So for our example, it would be (370) = y/(30m2). Multiply both sides by 30 and the amount of lumens we would need are about 11,100.
If that sounds like a lot, it is. A home gym really only needs somewhere between 2,000 and 10,000 lumens distributed through multiple lights so that you have several strong sources of light.
I know I could have just told you that, but then you wouldn’t have been gifted with the formula that helps you with all sorts of spaces. You’re welcome. If you’re still confused about lumens and how many you might need, I go into a little more detail in this article here.
What is the Best Lighting for a Gym?
Now that we have the number of lumens we need, we can get to the lights themselves. So, we want lights that are bright white, with 2,000-10,000 lumens, and if possible, are stupid easy to assemble. What lights would those be? I’m so glad you asked!
For larger spaces, like garages, the ultimate solution is the Multi-Point Illumination fixture from STKR Concepts. Instead of one source of illumination, you have five, eliminating dark areas entirely. Don’t bother with the idea that these are five pathetic little points of light. You’ve got 7500 total lumens at your disposal. And installation? I just have one question for you. Can you screw in a lightbulb? If yes, you’ve already got the main light down. The rest just need two screws each and your set.
For those who have smaller gyms and don’t feel like being blinded, may I introduce you to the TRiLIGHT Ceiling Light. Coming in at 4,000 lumens, its installation is just as simple as twisting a light bulb into a socket, and you can even aim the light where you want thanks to its three pivoting aluminum heads. This one may only be one point of light, but you still get 5 times the illumination those Edison bulbs will give you.
In short, it would be really nice to have an energy-efficient light that doesn’t force you to compromise in luminescence or eyesight. That’s why I and everyone at STKR make the things we do. We know how irritating - and frankly creepy - it is to work out in the dark just because you want your own personal space. Don’t worry, we’ve got you.
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