Why You Should Consider Getting An Adjustable Dumbbell Set

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Have you ever considered getting an adjustable dumbbell set? This could be a fantastic way to "upgrade" your workouts without sacrificing space. As the American Council on Exercise notes, dumbbells are more versatile than barbells due to their compact size. Barbells can be a great choice for compound movements, such as squats and deadlifts, but they take up a lot of space and may pose challenges for novice lifters. Dumbbells, on the other hand, allow for unilateral training and can be used for a wider range of exercises. Therefore, they may help reduce or eliminate strength imbalances and make it easier to build up your fitness.

This piece of equipment is suitable for most exercises that would otherwise require a barbell. Squats, overhead presses, chest presses, biceps curls, rows, and skull crushers are just a few to mention. You can even use dumbbells as part of your cardio workout — just make sure you keep the weight low. "Also, because you are able to manipulate and move dumbbells around more than a fixed machine, you can get a greater range of motion," says Andrew Tracey, a fitness editor at Men's Health.

If you go this route, you may be better off investing in adjustable dumbbells rather than fixed weights. These fitness accessories are on the pricey side but could save you hundreds of dollars in the long run. 

Adjustable dumbbells can save you money and space

Building a home gym in a small house or apartment isn't impossible, but it comes with its share of challenges. For example, you may need a barbell and several dumbbells, plus an exercise ball, weight plates, and other accessories, such as a weight bench and power rack. These accessories take up a lot of space, and the costs can add up.

Normally, you'd need two or three sets of dumbbells in different sizes for different exercises. Coach Mag, for instance, recommends using lighter dumbbells for bicep curls and overhead triceps extensions. However, you'll want to use heavier dumbbells for goblet squats, chest presses, bent-over rows, and other compound movements. Also, your needs will change as you get stronger.

Muscle growth, or hypertrophy, requires progressive overload. Simply put, it's necessary to increase workout volume, intensity, duration, or the amount of weight lifted to keep making progress, explains the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Therefore, a 5- to 10-pound dumbbell will likely become useless over time, as you'll need heavier weights to get results.

Adjustable dumbbells have a special mechanism that allows you to switch the weights almost instantly. Most models range in weight from 5 to 50 pounds, making them suitable for beginners and seasoned lifters alike, notes WebMD. Thanks to this feature, you'll only need a single set of dumbbells, which is more space efficient and costs less than a barbell and multiple dumbbell sets.

Take your home workouts to the next level

Whether you're short on time or have limited space, an adjustable dumbbell set could be one of the best investments you'll ever make. First of all, adjustable dumbbells save you the hassle of loading, unloading, and changing weight plates during your workouts, leading to increased efficiency. Your only job is to switch the weights by turning a dial or lever.

For example, Ativafit's Adjustable Dumbbell Set features a push-pull design that allows you to choose between five different weights ranging from 4.4 pounds to 44 pounds. This means you can gradually increase the load as your strength increases and move quickly from one exercise to the next. Other models, such as Vivitory's adjustable dumbbells, can also be used as a barbell or push-up board, allowing for a larger number of exercises.

Speaking of barbells versus dumbbells, these pieces of equipment are equally effective for building upper body mass and strength. In one study, college football players who used two 100-pound dumbbells had similar results as those training with a barbell of the same weight, reports the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. These findings may not apply to all exercises, but it's something worth considering.

Last but not least, you can get a full-body workout by only using adjustable dumbbells, says Coach Mag. This piece of gym equipment is suitable for both aerobic and strength exercises, from Russian twists and lateral raises to jump squats, keeping your workouts fun and interesting.