|Price||Ease Of Use||Effectiveness|
|They’re a little pricey compared to single weight dumbbells, but the upshot is you’ll only need this ONE purchase vs an entire set of multiple dumbbells.||The weights are clearly marked, and easy to “dial” in and change during workouts.||The weights are accurate, and have a wide variety of weights. As such, these are a GREAT addition to your home gym!|
Hey guys! Today, I’m trying something a little different. For a long time now, I’ve wanted to do product reviews on things that I’ve found that I think are worth buying – or avoiding – for your home gym. These are NOT sponsored reviews (although I’d be open to trying out manufacturers products!), and I pledge to give my honest opinions, pro’s and con’s so that you can make an educated decision about adding something to your home workout arsenal! So now that I’ve explained myself, let’s dive in!
I thought it best to start with a product that I love – the Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells. Talk about versatility! I’ve had mine for years now, and I’ve loved having them! In fact, if you could only buy a single piece of equipment for your home gym, these are what I would recommend buying. In fact, they were my recommendation – albeit not by brand – in my post in April of 2019 What Equipment Should I Buy For The Greatest Return On My Fitness Investment? There are a lot of adjustable dumbbells on the market, and admittedly, I haven’t had experience with many of them, but the ease of use these offer is pretty hard to argue with!
On that note, let’s take a look at how they work! The idea is fairly simple, you have a 5 pound “handle” with grooved ends, and capping each end is a dial with various weights marked on it. The handle is around 1.5″ in diameter with a rubber grip, so it is easy and comfortable to hold. Additionally, you have a “base” storing the multiple weight “plates” that interact with the handle to give you the desired weight you want to lift. The base neatly spaces and arranges the plates so that they always align with the handle properly, allowing for easy switching of the weight up or down. The weight plates themselves are shaped loosely like a letter “U”, with a slot at the top to accommodate the handle, and they include a notch that locks them onto the handle when the plate is needed.
To use the dumbbells, you slide the grooves on the handle into the arrangement of weight plates on the base, then turn the dials on the end to the amount of weight you want to lift. The handle automatically locks the needed weights in place, leaving behind the unneeded plates. When finished, you simply slide the weight back into place, and dial up the next desired weight.
The weights go as low as 5 pounds, and as high as 52.5 pounds with 15 different weight settings. The weight can be incremented in 2.5 pound increments, up to 25 pounds. From 25 up, the weights are incremented in 5 pound differences – except for the final 50 to 52.5 pounds (I’m guessing this has to do with the way the locking system works). This allows for a huge range of uses! Whether you need a lighter weight for full extension work – like a side lateral shoulder raise, or a heavier weight for something like a one-arm dumbbell row, this one piece of equipment will cover your needs!
There are less expensive options, such as traditional weight plate dumbbells with locking collars that hold the weights in place, but quite frankly, the speed with which you can change the weight on the Bowflex model makes the standard versions not even an option in my book. Plus, there’s a storage issue with keeping the traditional weight plates organized, and often they’re filled with sand which can leak. The Bowflex models are solid weight plates coated in plastic, so they slide easily on and off of the handle, and minimize any noise.
|Great range of weight! Perfect for most users!||It would be nice if there were higher weight options (although, Bowflex does sell another option that goes as high as 90 pounds per dumbbell)|
|Easy and quick to use!||Has the ability for the locking system to break (although mine haven’t in over 5 years of regular use by 2 people).|
|Doesn’t take up a lot of room||Some of the older models used a plastic clip to hold the weights and were more prone to breaking. Make sure yours are the newer model and use a metal clip to hold the weight plates.|
Note: One reviewer on Amazon in 2019 points out that the newer models are shipped with a locking feature to keep the weights from coming apart during shipment. Their instructions to unlock the dumbbells state:
“Essentially you turn the weights upside down with all parts attached to the base, smack the base with your hand and turn them to 5lbs, after smacking upside down they should release. Take the plates out after pressing a hidden release button on the bottom of the dumbbell, inspect, and place the plates back in the base. Place the handle back in the base and the dumbbell should now be unlocked.”
I didn’t have this issue with mine, but it’s possible that this is a new feature that wasn’t around when I purchased mine, so I wanted to share in case you decide to purchase a set.
If you’re still with me, you can buy a set of these from my Amazon associates link (below), and it will GREATLY help support the blog!
I hope this was helpful if you’re looking for something to take your workouts to the next level. If you’re serious about your workouts, I don’t think you’ll ever regret this investment!
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