One of the major problems with home gym equipment is that it is bulky and often requires a dedicated room of the house to use. That is why, in my opinion, the future of home gyms will be equipment that is designed to blend in with the decor. A few weeks ago I came across a concept that attempts to tackle that design challenge, but the final product leaves much to be desired. I'm a certified personal trainer-and if I were to design a piece of functional exercise furniture, I would like to think that it would be something similar to Gabriel Prero's Otto-Bench.

The Otto-Bench conceals an adjustable bench with an Olympic press and free weights inside a stylish ottoman-it even looks as though a leg press could be incorporated into the design. Obviously, it does not give you all of the variety that a commercial gym can offer, but it does offer a good set of basics-which is a good thing because there are plenty of manufacturers out there that try and cram too much into a design making it confusing and impractical to use. To be honest, you would be surprised at the amount of things you can do with a simple bench and some weights. It even won a design competition put on by Life Fitness, so don't be surprised if you see an actual product based on the Otto-Bench design sometime in the future. [Otto-Bench via Born Rich]