Dumbbell Guide: Don’t Get the Wrong Dumbbell

Dumbbells are a time-honored way to get maximum results for your body in the convenience of your own home. Versatility is one of the reasons dumbbells are popular pieces of exercise and fitness equipment; you can use the same piece for various exercise regimens -one at a time and in pairs. As you decide which dumbbells to buy, consider which types of dumbbells meet your needs, how much space you have available, dumbbell materials and a few other criteria.

>> Choose your space

First, in determining how to buy dumbbells, it's important to decide what space you have available for your dumbbells. While a pair of dumbbells doesn't take up a lot of space, you'll need to get more than one pair to vary up your workout, or you might want extra room to do your reps. Choose a space that will easily fit your dumbbells and give you enough room to work out.

>> Consider different types of dumbbells

Decide what you're trying to get from your workout. Do you want to tone up? Do you want to knock some inches off your waistline? Do you want to build rock-hard muscle? Knowing whether you want to lose weight, tone up or build muscle volume are key factors in knowing which dumbbells to buy. It's important to use smaller dumbbells sizes when trying to lose weight or just tone up.

Toning and weight loss require small and gradual increases in the amount of weight you lift, topping out at a relatively low weight. Therefore, you can get away with choosing just a few pairs of dumbbells. However, if you're looking to increase your strength or muscle volume, you'll be lifting increasing amounts of weight and doing fewer reps over time. This means you'll need more pairs of dumbbells. Fortunately, you have several different types of dumbbells to choose from.

Use the table below to help you choose the right types of dumbbells for your needs:

Type Use(s) Description Adjustable dumbbells Strength trainingIncrease muscle mass The adjustable dumbbells consist of a small metal bar with weight disks that can be easily slid on and off the outer portions of the dumbbells and secured with clips. Fixed-weight dumbbells Tone up Non-adjustable solid weights in the shape of a dumbbell. Aerobic dumbbells/plastic-coated Weight loss Aerobic dumbbells are usually 1-3 pounds and typically plastic-coated for easy grip. >> Choose your workout

Once you have decided what you want to get from your dumbbells, it's important to consider what kind of workout you want to do. In determining how to buy dumbbells, consider the following workouts you can do with a dumbbell set:

Chest workout: Dumbbell presses in a flat or inclined position; dumbbell flies in a flat or inclined position. Bicep workout: Dumbbell curls in a seated position Back and triceps workout: One-armed dumbbell rows; Dumbbell pull-overs Triceps workout: Close grip dumbbell press; triceps kickbacks Shoulders workout: Dumbbell shoulder press; side lateral raises Quadriceps workout: Squats or lunges with dumbbells in each hand Knowing the different workouts will help you determine what dumbbell sizes you need. For example, your quads are naturally much bigger, stronger muscles than your biceps, so you'll eventually need heavier dumbbells if you want to strengthen quads than for strengthening your biceps.

>> Consider your minimum and maximum weight limit

Knowing what dumbbell weights to buy depends upon what workout you are doing. Typically, a workout to tone the muscles or lose weight will require low weights from 1 to 10 pounds. However, if you are trying to build strength or muscle volume, you'll need more weight (and probably a set of adjustable dumbbells), meaning your maximum dumbbell weight could be anywhere from 25 to 70 lbs.

>> Consider your price

Dumbbells are a long-term investment that you can add to gradually, assuming you have the space for them. If your budget allows only a few pairs for fixed-weight dumbbells to begin with, start there. If you find that you enjoy dumbbell workouts and want to progress, you can add to your dumbbell collection gradually or make the transition to a set of adjustable dumbbells.

>> Consider the material of your dumbbells

The material of a dumbbell can be a big factor in your grip and the durability of the dumbbell. For example, adjustable dumbbells are metal. Metal can rust if left out in the rain or in humid areas, but with its engraved crosspatch pattern on the bar, it's easy to grip. A plastic-, rubber-or vinyl-coated dumbbell might be easier to grip with weightlifting gloves if your hands get sweaty, but you can keep the weights anywhere, rain or shine, without rusting.

When deciding how to buy dumbbells, your workout goals should be the most important factor in your buying decision. There are many different types of dumbbells available to you, but with this dumbbell Guide, you can find the best dumbbells to buy for your exercise needs.

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