Bowflex Dumbbells - Do They Live Up to the Hype?
Bowflex specializes in producing never-before-seen fitness equipment. Think of the Treadclimber or the Bowflex Revolution to name just a couple.
When they came out with Bowflex dumbbells called Selecttech, I wondered if these free weights would really live up to the hype. Here's my take on that question.
First of all what are Selecttech dumbbells?
Well, they are a set of specialized free weights that let you turn a dial and select the right amount of weight you want for the dumbbells. Then you lift them off the base plate and go.
You can choose from 10 up to 90 lbs - all in one set of free weights. Basically these dumbbells replace the need for 15 - 17 sets of different free weights.
Advantages of Bowflex Dumbbells:
First of all to be able to shrink 17 pairs of free weights down to 1 is amazing. If you don't want to be tripping over free weights or you have space limitations in your home gym, these dumbbells come in very handy.
Secondly, you also save money. When you compare what it would cost you to buy all of these free weights separately vs what one set of Selecttech dumbbells costs, it saves you at least a few hundred bucks.
Thirdly, if you're into showing off while you work out (or just want to impress the ladies who stop by your home gym), these are sleek, attractive looking free weights. They look a lot better than some other free weights out there, which may or may not be important to you.
Plus, the weight changes on these dumbbells come in small enough increments (5 lbs) that you can change up your workout every day to add new variety and challenges.
Lastly, the new 2009 dumbbells (there haven't been any new 2010 models released) use metal tabs on the weight plates to lock them in place. This is a huge improvement - both aesthetically and construction-wise - over the older models which used plastic tabs on the weight plates.
Are there any drawbacks? It depends on who you are and what you want.
Some people have found that the lengths of these dumbbells are a bit long (16 - 17 inches) so it can feel a bit bulky when you first try them out.
Plus as stated above, the older models used plastic tabs and there were some people who felt the weights could come lose if these tabs broke. However it seems that Bowflex has fixed this problem with the newer models.
These dumbbells are not meant to be dropped on the floor from standing position - like some people do with standard free weights. It's better to buy the weight stand for them which makes it easier to place on the stand, change the weight dial and slide them out again.
So do they live up to the hype?
In my opinion, yes they do. I think the construction quality is quite good, they're cost-effective and will also save you space. You don't even really need to have a designated "home gym" in your house to use these.
If you want an all-in-one free weight solution, you may want to consider Bowflex dumbbells.