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One of the best things about online shopping is that you can run errands while sitting (or standing) at your desk, giving you more time to pump in your home gym. You can also stock up on fitness equipment, including a versatile home fitness staple: adjustable dumbbells.
Adjustable dumbbells save space and money. They take entire sets of dumbbells and combine them into just one or two pieces of equipment. With just a few turns of a dial you can move from a 10-pound weight to a 35-pound weight. This boosts your workout and gives you more options for strength training.
Our ACTIVE Reviews Team put in the work and found the six best adjustable dumbbells available on the market.
Top picks for the six best adjustable dumbbells:
- Best Cheap Adjustable Dumbbells - CAP Strength Adjustable Cast Iron Dumbbell Set
- Best Mid-Weight Adjustable Dumbbells - FLYBIRD Adjustable Dumbbells
- Best Splurge Adjustable Dumbbells - NordicTrack Select-A-Weight Dumbbell Set
- Best Value Adjustable Dumbbells - Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells
- Best Loadable Dumbbells - Rogue DB-15 Loadable Dumbbell
- Best 2-in-1 Adjustable Dumbbells - KISS GOLD Adjustable Dumbbells Set
Best Cheap Adjustable Dumbbells - CAP Strength Adjustable Cast Iron Dumbbell Set
While you can always grab your cast iron cookware for a quick kitchen workout, if you’re serious about pumping iron in a home gym, we suggest cast iron adjustable dumbbells. Our top pick: CAP Barbell’s 40-200 pound adjustable set. These are plate-loaded dumbbells, so you manually slide weights onto the handles. The “beginner” set comes with up to 40 pounds, though you can opt for a set that loads the dumbbells up to 100 pounds each!
And as per the brand’s name, CAP Barbell specializes in weights, so you’re in good hands with its cast iron adjustable dumbbell set, which has a semi-gloss finish for rust resistance and solid steel handles.
What We Love:
- Durability of cast iron build
- Weight options from 5 pounds to 100 pounds
- High weight limit for those who want a challenge
Best Mid-Weight Adjustable Dumbbells - FLYBIRD Adjustable Dumbbells
The exceptional compactness of FLYBIRD’s adjustable dumbbells make them a great option for a small-sized home gym. And while these weights might not be enough to push a bodybuilder, if you’re Goldilocks looking for that “just right” mid-range pick, these are a solid option. There are two options on Amazon: a dumbbell that can weigh up to 25 pounds adjusted in 5-pound increments, and one that goes up to 55 pounds. You adjust the weight by turning a dial, which is a quick, seamless process.
One thing to be aware of: The dumbbells are sold as singles, rather than a pair, so be sure to double the quantity in your Amazon cart before checkout.
What We Love:
- Compact design
- Dial offers quick change weight adjustment
- Two dumbbell options: up to 25 and up to 55 pounds
Best Splurge Adjustable Dumbbells - NordicTrack Select-A-Weight Dumbbell Set
NordicTrack has a great track record with the reviews team when it comes to its fitness equipment, and making the cut here is the brand's adjustable dumbbell set. We love that with NordicTrack’s Select-A-Weight dumbbell set you can adjust to different weights in 2.5-, 5- or 10-pound increments for a custom feel. The dumbbells also come with a fitted storage tray and can replace 15 pairs of dumbbells.
If you really want to splurge, opt to subscribe to iFit, NordicTrack's virtual personal trainer program, which starts with a free trial. With iFit, trainers can guide you on dynamic, energetic dumbbell workouts, along with a wealth of other training regimes, like yoga, Pilates and kickboxing.
What We Love:
- 2.5-, 5- and 10-pound weight adjustment available
- Trainer-led workouts via the iFit app
- Sturdy 10-pound dumbbell handlebar for training without adding weights
Best Value Adjustable Dumbbells - Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells
Bowflex made an early impression in the adjustable dumbbell game with its SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells, and they remain an attractive adjustable dumbbell because you get 15—yes, 15!—dumbbells in one. Think of all the space you save by cutting down from 15 pairs of dumbbells to just one. The weight range on the 552s is 5 to 52.5 pounds, which adjust in 2.5-pound increments.
As a bonus, Bowflex offers a free app called the Bowflex SelectTech Training App, which is compatible with iOS and Android devices. Get the weights, download the app and get started!
What We Love:
- Takes the place of 15 pairs of dumbbells
- Comes with a free workout app
- Small, 2.5-pound weight changes for added options
Best Loadable Dumbbells - Rogue DB-15 Loadable Dumbbell
If you’re a seasoned weight lifter with Olympic change plates already on hand, Rogue has you covered with its DB-15 loadable dumbbell. The Rogue DB-15 has Olympic-sized sleeves, so you can share your plates between your barbell and dumbbell set. That’ll save you some of the usual weight-related cost that comes with buying and shipping adjustable barbells.
There are two options on the Rogue site: a pair of handles that weighs 10 pounds with collars and a pair that weighs 15 pounds with collars (the collars are half a pound each). These are sold as a single dumbbell, not as pairs.
What We Love:
- Great value at less than $300 for a pair
- Fully knurled handle for great grip
- Can share compatible plates between barbell and dumbbell
Best 2-in-1 Adjustable Dumbbells - KISS GOLD Adjustable Dumbbells Set
For a one-two punch of barbell and dumbbell, you can opt for KISS GOLD’s Adjustable Dumbbell Set. The handles of the dumbbells can be attached to a rod, transforming the free weights into a barbell. Amazon lists several options: 11-, 22- and 33-pound dumbbells. When transformed, these can create 22-, 44- and 66-pound barbells.
For the price, you’re getting a slightly less durable build—the fill is solid steel but the cover is thermoplastic polyurethane, which can easily wear over time. But for the price and the added bonus of the barbell, you get great value.
What We Love:
- Dumbbells and barbells with a quick transformation
- Several weight options to choose from
- Enhanced spinlock keeps weight secure on the dumbbells
Why Should You Add Adjustable Dumbbells to Your Home Gym?
We can’t say we blame you if the prices on a set of adjustable dumbbells gave you a brief bout of sticker shock. Although adjustable dumbbells are a sizable investment, they are space-saving in terms of workout equipment. Think of a full set of dumbbells: They take up a lot of real estate that you could use for other gym equipment.
Second, you get all the fitness benefits of dumbbell training within that compact package. And whether you want to focus on building muscle with strength training or add resistance to your cardio workouts to burn more fat, there’s a place for dumbbells in your workout routine.
Finally, despite the high price of adjustable dumbbells, you’ll ultimately be saving money versus buying fixed-weight dumbbells if you want a comprehensive range of dumbbell heft.
Factors in Finding the Best Adjustable Dumbbells for You
If you share a home gym with a partner, kids, roommates or even guests via AirBnb, you’ll need durable equipment. Adjustable dumbbells can take a lot of abuse. While we should never, ever drop dumbbells, accidents do happen. So if you are prone to dropping weights (don’t ever be that person when you’re at a public gym!), make sure to get weight plates that can withstand the impact, made with materials like iron and steel.
Some adjustable dumbbell types, like loadable dumbbells, have incredible range, that you’d be unlikely to feel are inadequate, while others have lower weight limits. Make sure the pair of dumbbells you’re looking at has an amount of weight that will suit your home workouts. Consider a total body workout where you may use heavier weights for your legs and lighter weights for your arms.
Ease of Use
Some adjustable dumbbells feature a dial for weight selection, and some require you to take plates on and off. If you need a quick change, the dial function might be best for you. Also, you want to be able to easily know the adjustable weights you’re grabbing. Look for clear labeling on the weight setting. You might also find certain brands more awkward to hold than others, so be mindful of the design when looking at adjustable dumbbells for your weight training.
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