What makes a good Powerlifting Gym?
There are some key things to factor in:
- Location: Obviously this is completely personal, but as a Manchester resident the chances are you will rely on public transport to get around. So it needs to be easily accessible and not in the middle of a rancid industrial park
- Cost: Pretty obvious, but a powerlifting gym shouldn’t be too expensive. The equipment doesn’t need to be state of the art, but we need racks and platforms. They should provide a free taster session for anyone interested and a monthly no frills membership should be sub-£50.
- Quality: Quality in this scenario doesn’t simply refer to the quality of equipment on offer. I don’t mind something rough and ready as opposed to sparkling when it comes to weightlifting. This is also to do with changing room and toilet quality, staff friendliness, pre-workout and protein stock, atmosphere etc.
- Cleanliness: For me a powerlifting gym doesn’t have to be perfect. In fact I want some scrapes and scratches on the equipment. A little grit, sweat and spit never hurt anyone. What I hate is dusty floors and weights left scattered all over them.
- Equipment Availability: An empty weightlifting gym is a ship without a captain. Soulless. Devoid of a certain energy that ironheads need to reach their peak. It’s got to be gritty, but friendly. Encouraging, but also a little intimidating.
So that’s my quality rating for each gym. Each will be marked out of 5 with relevant links to review pages and links for one off session purchases.
I’ll then give a total score out of 20 to celebrate the overall winner.
I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed collating it.
The 7 Best Powerlifting & Weightlifting Gyms in Manchester
Manchester has a rich tapestry of powerlifting and weightlifting gyms. From the budget (£3.15 / session) to the premium (£10+), there’s something to fit everyone’s budget and style.
|Gym||Cost||Equipment Availability||Equipment Quality||Cleanliness||Average Rating||Shop|
|Fighting Fit Strength & Performance||£££|
|Nuffield Health Print-works||£££|
|P1 Fitness Studio||£££|
|Olympic Sports Gym||£|
|Energie Fitness Cheadle||££|
Each link takes you through to the gym’s hussle.com page where you’re able to find out a little more about the gym and book a day, weekly or monthly session.
Cumulative Score: 18.5
Almost akin to a crossfit gym, Fighting Fit Strength & Performance has top notch equipment for powerlifting and weightlifting.
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6 years ago the unit was a huge empty shell. Hard work from staff and members and sticking it out through some tough times and we have a gym that we're very proud of #fightingfit #manchester #bjj #boxing #mma #fitness #strength #gym #martialarts #kickboxing #kobudo #powerlifting
Numerous squat racks, proper plates and platforms aplenty, you won’t be missing out if you train here. Especially if you’re after a centrally located gym.
It is on the pricier end, but it’s a great place to train. Especially if you’re interested in martial arts or combat sports too!
Cumulative Score: 17
A chain on the more premium end of the scale, Nuffield Health do a fantastic job catering to the weightlifting community.
Squat racks, platforms and powerlifting specific warmup equipment make this Manchester gym a surefire winner. The bodybuilding specific hypertrophy machines are typically (close to) top of the range.
Well maintained and good quality, if a little expensive.
Cumulative Score: 17.9
With top quality Olympic weights, platforms and squat racks P1 Fitness Studio is a great option for those looking to get legitimately strong.
It’s central location makes it ideal for commuters and city dwellers. The Eleiko platforms, free weights and welcoming atmosphere make it an easy first step for any wannabe lifter.
With excellent warmup space and equipment, there’s absolutely no excuse if you get injured. So don’t skip the important bit.
Cumulative Score: 19
With possibly the best equipment on this list, Gymgame is the editor’s choice.
A seriously well-equipped gym with multiple platforms, racks and free weight areas it looks and feels fantastic. Recently rebranded, Gymgame should be top of your Mancunian list.
You won’t be waiting for equipment. It’s never dirty and it’s beautifully central. A tricky gym to best in my opinion (and not just for powerlifters)!
Cumulative Score: 16.9
Not a huge gym, but TYR has chalk, squat racks and bodybuilding machines aplenty.
I’ve always been a fan of old-school equipment for certain exercises. Seeing the dents and scratches of sets past is a great way to build atmosphere and history inside a gym.
At busier times you may struggle to get a squat rack or platform instantly, but it won’t be a long wait. But the amazing value makes it all worthwhile.
Cumulative Score: 17.3
The cumulative score is weighted based off how little this gym actually costs for a single session. A real Ashton-Under-Lyme bargain find!
Whilst the equipment isn’t quite as premium as others on the list, the exceptional price makes it an excellent option for students and beginners alike.
The array of platforms and squat racks make this absolutely ideal for powerlifters and weightlifters. A real spit and sawdust version of a good quality gym.
Cumulative Score: 16.6
Energie Fitness have done a good job making a mid-range chain of gyms with decent quality equipment. Typically you’ll have to wait a little while if you’re keen to use the squat rack or platform as they aren’t bountiful.
Personally I am not a huge fan of these really commercial style gyms for powerlifting, but Energie Fitness is a solid option for those on a budget who want something more all-encompassing.