Best Adjustable Dumbbells
Choosing the best adjustable dumbbells used to be easier before the market was flooded with a ton of cheap models. Now it is difficult to decipher the originals from the knock offs which means you could be throwing away your money on dumbbell sets that will have to be replaced in less than a year. There is so much to consider when choosing adjustable dumbbells from weight to adjustment type that choosing the best set for your needs can be intimidating. Before you start to feel overwhelmed, check out our buyer's guide below to understand what makes up the best adjustable dumbbell for your individual needs.
Best Adjustable Dumbbells Overall:
Since their introduction, adjustable dumbbells have changed the way we do fitness. These fitness systems make it possible for individuals to have an entire rack of dumbbells in their home without taking up a lot of space. Since their introduction adjustable dumbbells have continued to evolve and become a little better every year with multiple brands out there claiming to be the best but in reality there are very few which actually earn that title. However, these best adjustable dumbbells were chosen as the best because of their great weight ranges, technology for increasing weight increments during a workout, and feature durable weight plates which allow little to no movement between them.
The Ironmaste Quicklock set is nothing short of genius and it's a shame this extremely durable adjustable dumbbell set isn't more popular. Though it doesn't use a traditional form of adjustment, it still only takes seconds between weight switches. Read Full Review
It would be nearly impossible not to see Bowflex as one of the best; they revolutionized the adjustable dumbbells and have made steady improvements on them since then. This particular set has a huge weight range which accommodates beginners and experts alike. There is no need to worry about shoddy manufacturing either as you also get a three year warranty to back up your purchase. Read Full Review
The Universal Power Pak is great because of its overall weight capacity along with its price. These weights are manufactured with durable parts and backed with a one year warranty. Read Full Review
Power Block made the adjustable dumbbell what it is and this is definitely their best. It offers a great range of weight along with the ability to add more weight over time. A lifetime home warranty offer additional peace of mind while you're working out. Read Full Review
This weight set is newer to the market but guaranteed to make a splash. It offers a wide weight range with a unique, yet easy to use weight selection process. The Twistlock is super durable too with a plastic coating which guarantees longevity. Read Full Review
Best Budget Adjustable Dumbbells:
Adjustable dumbbells are awesome because they save space and make it easy to strength train in even the smallest living spaces. The one tradeoff for their convenience is their high price which doesn’t often work for people who are living in smaller spaces to begin with. Budget adjustable dumbbells are hard to come by and ones that are worth their weight are even harder to find. These best adjustable dumbbells were chosen for their quality manufacturing materials, the minimal amount of movement they allow between plates during a workout, their maximum weight capacities and the amount of weight between increments, as well as the ease in which you can change the weights up mid-set.
The U33 is exactly what you are looking for in a budget adjustable dumbbell. It is not just the price that makes it so desirable, it is easy to adjust the weight with the pin system and you even have the option of adding more weight in time. The best part about buying a Power Block item is the history and quality of the product. Read Full Review
Bayou Fitness equipment is budget friendly, but they’re about as high quality as you will get from a budget-oriented company. These dumbbells offer nice chrome plated metal, acceptable weight increments, and quick change pin adjustments. Read Full Review
If you are just starting out this may be the best set of dumbbells for you. This set made out of high quality materials and offers more weight than you could ask for at an unbeatable price for adjustable dumbbells. While it may have its flaws you won’t find more weight at this price anywhere else. Read Full Review
Xmark Fitness’s 25 pound pair of adjustable dumbbells is on the higher end of the budget spectrum but this set offers heavy duty materials and thick weight plates which won’t wiggle during your workout. This pair comes highly suggested if you know that you won’t need more than 25 pounds for your dumbbell routine. Read Full Review
If you’re looking to get a pair of dumbbells that have some variability, but don’t cost an arm and a leg, these ones from Sunny Health and Fitness are a great option. They are made out of quality materials. The ability to purchase extra weights when needed makes this budget adjustable dumbbell set worth much more than its asking price. Read Full Review
Adjustable Dumbbell Buyer's Guide
When adjustable dumbbells first hit the market they immediately became popular partly because they condense an entire weight rack into a small yet efficient space. You will find adjustable weights of all different sizes and prices, but not everyone can be called the best. There are a lot of considerations to make when choosing which adjustable dumbbells will best fit your needs.
Adjustable dumbbells come in all kinds of shapes and sizes that can better lend themselves to specific types of workouts and that is only one of your many considerations. Some have a max weight as low as 12.5 pounds while others go all the way up to 75 pounds and they all have different locking mechanisms including dial, pin, and switch. More importantly, they are all priced very differently.
All of this is important to your dumbbells, but it is only scratching the surface. To really be content with your adjustable dumbbell you need to focus on all of its features like a solid base, additional stand, and extended warranties. The most important aspect to consider is the quality of your dumbbells, no matter what you are using them for their reliability is their most important quality.
The switch type is by far the easiest to use because you simply flip a switch to change the weight although this adjustment method isn’t always the most reliable. The switches have been known to break off and depending on the product, the printed numbers can rub off with continual use.
The most popular form of adjustment is the turn dial which is still fairly easy to use but can get caught up every once in a while. Heavier weights often use dials located on the side while lighter weights opt to put the dial on top of the weights for the most part.
The locking pin method is only used in a select few models but works great and keeps the weights tightly together. Unlike the other models which use hanging weights, the pin system supports vertical weights so there’s no movement. The biggest downside to the locking pin method is it can get tedious to pull the pin out and stick back in, especially when inserting the pin into wrong slot more than once.
When choosing an adjustable dumbbell set, the weight is an important factor. Usually adjustable weights come in two variations with 2.5 to 25 pounds being the most popular. However, there’s also another popular variation starting between 5 to 10 pounds and caps out between 50 and 60 pounds.
There may be one or two companies out there offering adjustable weights over 60 pounds. However, given the nature of this products intended use, heavier weights are incredibly uncommon Lighter weight adjustable bells are great for cardio use but if you’re looking to build muscle you absolutely need an adjustable weight set that will go beyond 25 pounds. In all honesty, everything else is a waste of money.
It’s important to choose dumbbells which have a decent base to hold the weights which aren’t in use. Most bases are decent and manufactured with sturdy materials but every once in a while you come across something cheap that won’t hold the plates in place very well.
Some weights also come with a stand which is a nice way to store your weights when you aren’t using them. It also prevents you from having to bend down to grab them for every set.
One of the most important extra features for any adjustable dumbbell is the manufacturer’s warranty. There are a lot of moving parts involved and no matter how well these pieces of equipment are built, there’s always the possibility something could go wrong.
Your Weights, Your Workout
Dumbbells aren’t just for curls as you may know and not every adjustable dumbbell works for every movement. While weight is an important factor when considering how you’ll use your new weights, it’s not the only thing to think about.
If you are planning on a lot of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises which require substantial movements, you’ll want to get a solid pair of weights without a lot of plate movement; otherwise your dumbbells and plates will shift around, making your workout more difficult and less efficient. For HIIT exercises, you’ll want want to invest in a nice pair of pin lock weights in order to keep the plates where they should be.
With circuit training you’re going to want to choose a pair of dumbbells which allow you to switch between weights quickly and smoothly to accommodate the rapid rounds of multiple exercises. It’s tiresome taking a long time to switch weights and it could derail your workout.
If you’re doing a lot of overhead exercises, you absolutely want a superior set of weights because some cheaper sets have a weight slipping issue. The last thing you want is to be hit on the head by a falling ten pound weight plate during your overhead press. Any weight change system would work for these exercises as long as it’s a high-quality dumbbell set.
Price and Quality
The saying, “you get what you pay for,” is especially true when it comes to adjustable dumbbells. Even a decent set of adjustable dumbbells which max out at 25 pounds can easily run you $50 or more. Just like any other piece of exercise equipment, it pays to invest a little more money now than buying another set a year later when the cheap one falls apart on you.