How to Move Exercise Equipment

Keeping gym equipment safe during a move

Having your own exercise equipment is a great way to keep in shape without leaving the comfort of your home. But, as convenient as it is to have a home gym, most exercise machines are heavy or oddly shaped, which can make them difficult to move. Before moving day, find out the best ways to disassemble your fitness gear to keep it safe during transit. 

Person riding a working bike.


Packing a treadmill

Treadmills are one of the most popular exercise machines because they’re easy to use and great for weight loss. But since they weigh at least a couple hundred pounds, moving them to another house requires some careful planning. Because each treadmill is different, we recommend referring to the owner’s manual for specific instructions. If you can’t find a print or digital copy, follow these general steps:  

  1. Set the treadmill’s incline to zero and remove the safety key (don’t lose it — place it in a zip top bag, label it, and pack it in a box with other parts)
  2. Unplug the treadmill
  3. Fold the walking deck toward the console until it locks into place
  4. Insert the locking pin or tighten the knob to secure it (this will differ depending on your treadmill)
  5. Wrap moving blankets or furniture paper pads around the treadmill to prevent damaging it, the walls and the door frames (consider packing the treadmill in its original box if you still have it)
  6. Tilt the machine backward about 45 degrees, slide a dolly underneath it, and then fasten it down with rope
  7. Once it’s secure, carefully tilt it toward your chest, and push it forward slowly
  8. Secure the treadmill in the moving trailer or container with rope or ratchet straps to keep it from shifting during transit

Note: If your treadmill doesn’t fold, you’ll either need to disassemble it into parts, or have someone help you carry it to the moving equipment.

How to move an elliptical machine

Elliptical machines offer another great way to work out, but can be challenging to relocate because of their unique shape. Start by taking it apart — they usually break down into four pieces: the handlebars, pedals, base and main console.  Wrap them individually in furniture pads, foam wrap or moving blankets. Then, pack the parts in the original packaging or in moving boxes. If you can’t disassemble the elliptical, follow these steps:

  • Secure the handlebars and pedal with rope or packing tape so that they don’t shift when lifted
  • Wrap it in a moving blanket for protection
  • Have someone help you lift and carry it to the moving equipment (have the stronger person lift the front)

Best way to pack dumbbells, barbells and weights

Weights come in a variety of shapes and sizes. When packing lighter weights (dumbbells or small weight plates), wrap each one in Bubble Wrap® or packing paper, and then place them in smaller boxes. Don’t try to pack all of the weights in one box because it will be too heavy to lift and could cause injury. Fill empty spaces with packing paper to prevent the weights from clinking together. For heavier weights and barbells, wrap them in packing paper, and place them directly on the floor of the moving equipment. Be sure to secure them with rope or straps to keep them from shifting during transit. 

Moving an exercise bench

Packing a workout bench is similar to packing furniture. Wrap it in a moving blanket or furniture pads, and then load it into the moving equipment. Don’t forget to use rope or ratchet straps to tie it down.

Other helpful packing tips

No matter how you decide to move your exercise equipment, keep these tips in mind:

  • Take pictures from all angles (this will make reassembly easier)
  • Wear work gloves to protect your hands
  • Keep screws, bolts and other small parts together in a plastic bag — label the bag and use tape to attach it to the equipment or place in a box with other parts
  • After reassembly, test each machine carefully to make sure everything is connected correctly

Do you need help packing other items in your house? Check out this complete packing guide

U-Pack® is ideal for moving large, heavy workout gear 

While some moving companies charge you based on weight, U-Pack rates are based on space. So you won’t be penalized for moving weights or heavy cardio machines. Get a free moving quote, or call us at 844-362-5303844-594-3077 to see how much space you’ll need, and get a free moving quote.