Adjustable dumbbells: 5 flexible models in comparison

Fitness Train flexibly: Compare adjustable dumbbells for at home

Adjustable dumbbells are a practical option for working on your strength and fitness in your own home. And the best thing about it: Because the weights can be replaced in a flash, they are suitable for the whole family.

© BowFlex

Biceps, abdominals and flexors. May it be a little bit more? In the weeks after hibernation, the first ones dream of a presentable beach body again. If you don’t feel like playing music, you have to do it at home. Adjustable dumbbells are currently very popular. Five training tools in comparison.

Just over seven million Germans aged 14 and over regularly trained in a fitness studio in 2023. According to a current market analysis by IfD Allensbach, that is around 600,000 fewer than in 2020. The reasons are certainly varied. What is certain, however, is that quite a few people now train in their own four walls instead of cycling to the gym. This not only saves time, but also protects your account balance. If you don’t just want to work with your own body weight at home, you need suitable equipment and tools. And they should take up as little space as possible. And that’s exactly where the manufacturers of adjustable dumbbells come in. Here you can find out what the big advantage of these dumbbells is and for whom the investment is worthwhile. Five adjustable dumbbell sets in comparison.

BowFlex SelectTech 552i

Weight dumbbell handlehere. 2 kgWeight levels/dumbbell15 (2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 16, 18, 20, 23, 24 kg)Storage baseandInstructionsyes (including practice examples)ExtraJRNY Testabo (mit Motion Tracking)

We’ll start with one of the top models of adjustable dumbbells. The BowFlex SelectTech 552i is a statement: a powerful 25 kilograms of high-quality coated iron, ready to hand in a compact and therefore space-saving storage base. The Americans want to replace up to 15 individual dumbbells with this training tool. And that is exactly the appeal of the 552i, which can easily fit into smaller apartments. The trick is as simple as it is ingenious. You first decide which exercise you want to do and with which weight. Then the adjustment wheel on the outside of the dumbbell is turned to the appropriate number so that the wheel clicks into place. Clockwise increase the weight. Locking pins lock this mechanism if the barbell is not positioned correctly in the base or is removed. The SelectTech 552i is equipped with five weights per side. Depending on which number is selected on the dial, the mechanism locks or releases one or more discs.

Positive: In addition to a detailed operating manual, BowFlex provides twelve pages of exercise suggestions for training arms, legs, back, chest and shoulders. Optionally, you can train with the in-house JRNY app. Anyone who treats themselves to the dumbbell set will receive a two-month trial membership on top. The app tracks training via the camera on a tablet or smartphone, counts repetitions and offers guided live coaching.

At well over 200 euros, the 552i is an expensive pleasure. Since you usually train with two dumbbells, you end up with just under 500 euros. However, you also get 30 dumbbells between two and 25 kilograms in one piece. So if you want to do dumbbell training and play flexibly with weights, you can’t go wrong with the BowFlex SelectTech 552i.

Christopeit CS 12 Hantelset

Weight dumbbell handle2 kgWeight levels/dumbbell2 kg/4 kg/7 kg/10 kg/12 kgStorage baseandInstructionsyes (German/English)

The CS12 dumbbell from Christopeit works according to a similar principle. However, this tool can only be used to set five different weights between two and twelve kilograms. Christopeit Sport was founded in 1976 in Velbert (North Rhine-Westphalia) by a former Bundesliga goalkeeper and specializes in all kinds of fitness equipment. This also includes tools for free weight training. With the CS12, too, the desired weight can only be selected and adjusted using a rotary wheel if the dumbbell is correctly positioned in the storage tray. An audible click indicates that the corresponding discs made of plastic-coated metal are securely placed on the dumbbell bar. A pair of CS12 dumbbells costs around 250 euros. You get ten dumbbells in a compact package. From our point of view, it’s also a good deal, although the price at BowFlex (30 dumbbells for around 500 euros) is a little better in purely mathematical terms. For those who are experienced with free weights, Christopeit also has the CS25 dumbbell (3 to 31 kg) in its range.

NordicTrack dumbbell set 25

Weight dumbbell handle2 kgWeight levels/dumbbell15 (2, 4, 5, 7, 7,5, 10, 11, 12,5, 14, 15, 17,4, 20, 22,5, 25 kg)Storage baseandInstructionsyes (German/English)ExtraFree training app iFit

NordicTrack has implemented the idea of ​​adjustable dumbbells in a set of 2. However, it doesn’t have a rotating mechanism like some competitors. Instead, with the “Smooth Weight Selection System” you insert an orange bolt into the bar from above to select the weight to be applied. Instead of using the rotary control, the weight is read from the storage tray. In addition, you can fine-tune using another slider. According to the manufacturer, this results in an astonishing 15 weight options per dumbbell. This means that the NordicTrack dumbbell set 25 is on par with the 552i from BowFlex in this respect. The two dumbbell sets from the high-price segment are also very similar in other ways. With NordicTrack, the steel discs are also covered with washable plastic. The virtual coach can be activated via the iFit app. This interactive extra is free at NordicTrack.

Yes4All Dumbbell Set

Weight dumbbell handlehere. 2 kgWeight levels/dumbbell2 kg / 6,4 kg / 9,2 kg / 13,6 kg Storage basenoInstructionsnot specified

This pair of adjustable dumbbells from Yes4All is completely classic and not nearly as comfortable as the dumbbell sets with a storage base. The weight plates made of robust, powder-coated cast iron are pushed onto the dumbbell bar and removed again by hand. A screw fixes the weights. The scope of delivery includes four discs each weighing 2.2 and 3.6 kg. The dumbbell handles weigh around two kilograms. There are not particularly many options for distributing the weights. If you don’t just want to train with the handles, you need to weigh at least 6.4 kilograms per dumbbell. A maximum of 13.6 kilograms is possible if the weights are distributed equally. In contrast to the models with a storage base, you should also consider a place where the panes that are not needed can be stored.

Crivit dumbbell set

Weight dumbbell handle1,5 kgWeight levels1,5 kg / 4 kg / 6,5 kg / 9 kg / 11,5 kgStorage baseandInstructionsyes (including practice examples)

The last dumbbell set with adjustable weights in this comparison comes from Crivit, the discounter Lidl’s own sports brand. It is the cheapest and allows you to select or deselect the weight plates while the dumbbell is in the storage block. The eight discs included weigh 1.25 kilograms each. If the bar is fully equipped, you can train with a weight of 11.5 kilograms. Beginners also have the chance to start with 1.5 kilograms, because that’s how much the 35 centimeter long, non-slip dumbbell handle weighs. The desired weight can be adjusted using a rotating mechanism at the ends of the handle. The weight plates that are not required (deselected) remain in the storage block. For experienced athletes, Lidl also has this dumbbell set in its range with a maximum training weight of 25 kilograms (eight discs of 2.75 kg each plus dumbbell handle). Here is the slightly more demanding version, the Crivit dumbbell set 25 kg.

Sources: Statista (IfD Allensbach)

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