How to Buy the Right Weight Bench?
A weight bench with barbells and dumbbells provides a cost effective, complete weight training workout. It also saves the expense of an entire home gym system that requires time and effort to adjust for each new exercise. There are many bench styles and features available. Read the following article to identify the most important facets to consider when you buy a weight bench.
The first thing you should do, before even setting foot into a weight lifting equipment store, is understand your fitness goals. What are your main objectives? Lose weight, gain weight, improve aerobic capacity, or increase strength? You must have a clear understanding of exactly what you desire to accomplish.
The next step is to create a specific weight lifting routine. If you know your goals, as well as your exact routine, you will be more qualified to purchase the proper weight bench. Your strength training program will direct you into what you really need to purchase in order to accomplish your weight lifting goals. Also keep in mind, strive to choose equipment you enjoy working out on. It doesn’t make any sense buying a specific weight bench if you don’t like the way it feels.
1. Choose a bench style based on the exercises you plan to do. A simple flat bench is sufficient for general purposes, especially at the beginner stage. Use it for complete dumbbell workouts or slide it under a weight rack for barbell lifts. A variation is an incline or decline bench. Use the decline for upper and middle abdominal crunches and the incline to target arms and shoulders with dumbbell reps.
2. Isolate more specific muscle groups with a specialized weight bench. Look at a tower setup to perform dips, chin-ups, leg raises and push-ups. Work your lower back and obliques on a hyperextension bench. Sit at a “preacher” curl bench for bicep curls.
3. Also, some models have a leg extension and curl feature at the base of the bench. Not always the best way to train your legs, but something else worth considering for a more complete workout.
4. A nice feature to have is an adjustable incline bench that makes it possible to focus on your shoulders and upper pectorals. Something as simple as a metal rod that locks into place underneath the cushion of the bench at different heights will work fine. Most, even lower quality, models have this feature.
5. Look for a bench with a weight rack attached. The bench may have a rack underneath or hooks on the sides to store dumbbells. The rack will keep your workout area more tidy and the weights close at hand as you move through the exercises. If you’re doing serious lifting, the barbell should be held at arms length. Many higher quality weight benches have this feature and it’s handy if you’re throwing around heavier weights. Mind you; it’s no replacement for a spotter.
6. Decide which accessories or options to purchase along with your new weight bench. Get a set of dumbbells and/or barbells. Include an overhead barbell catcher if you work out alone. Consider the attachments for butterflies, arm curls, leg curls and cable extensions if you want more exercise options. Look at leg and foot stabilizers if you plan to lift heavy weights or want to feel more secure.
7. Determine to what degree you plan to adjust the weight bench. Check if its height or attachments adjust for the different heights your family members. Get an adjustable incline, from decline to flat to incline, for a range of difficulty levels as you improve and tackle different moves.
8. Verify how much weight the bench can handle. Test its stability–see if it seems that it may tip over. Look at the feet or base to see if it is made of non-slip material that won’t tear up the floor.
9. Comfort should also be a factor, when purchasing a weight training bench. Weight benches are padded for your comfort. Some offer more padding than others. Again, it really depends on what you are looking for in a weight bench. Once you have looked around, and completed your comparison shopping, you will have a better idea of what to choose.
10. It is not necessary to purchase all accessories and attachments at once; many can be added at a later date. Measure the dimensions of the space where you plan to keep the bench to avoid buying a bench that will not fit.