The Best Weight Set Reviews - Train like an Olympic Athlete

Weight sets are a great way to get a full body workout. The two most common types available are barbells and dumbbells. Both types usually have interchangeable plates that can be mounted on both ends of the grip bar.  Good quality weight sets have to have very durable plates, along with the way that their plates are mounted on the grip bar as to avoid any chances of the weight plates from falling off the bar which can cause serious injuries.

Our Top 10 Weight Sets

PictureModelWeight RangePriceRating
WeightCAP Dumbbell40 Pounds$4.5 Stars
Bowflex SelectTech 552 DumbbellsBowflex 55252 Pounds$$4.5 Stars
Gold's Gym WeightsGold's Gym Set100 Pounds$4 Stars
Bowflex 1090 DumbbellsBowflex 109090 Pounds$$4.5 Stars

If you are still unsure what kind of weight set you think would suit your workout regimen,  check the table below. You can check out a variety of options ranging from barbells to dumbbells, that we have reviewed and compared to one another regarding features, quality and price.

TypeExampleWeight RangePriceType of WorkoutDisadvantages
Dumbbell
CAP Dumbbell Set with Rack
CAP Dumbbell0-105 lbs
0-50 kg
$Upper Body
Arms
Back
The rack takes up a lot of space and weights are not adjustable so a lot of dumbbells are required.
Adjustable Dumbbell
Dumbbells with weight plates
Adjustable Cast Iron Dumbbells0-105 lbs
0-50 kg
$Upper Body
Arms
Back
Adjustable Dumbbells take up less space than the traditional options but you will still have lot's of weight plates flying around and changing the weights takes time.
Selectable Dumbbell
Dumbbell with different weights
Bowflex Dumbbells0-52.5 lbs
0-23,8 kg
$$$Upper Body
Arms
Back
By far the most elegant option available. The only disadvantage is the high price and lower weight range compared to other options.
Barbell
Barbell Set
Olympic Weights by Gold's Gym0-600 lbs or more
0-300 kg or more
$$Chest
Arms
Back
Legs
Lot's of space is required to workout with barbells. In many cases a spotter would be ideal.
 

Features the Best Weight Set Should Have:

The most important things to consider when looking for a barbell or dumbbell is the durability of the  plates since this part of the dumbbell will often be the one to incur the most abuse as it will be frequently hitting the floor. Plates made from high quality forged steel can stand up to frequent dropping and will not chip or crack easily. If you are planning to buy an adjustable barbell or dumbbell, make sure that the plates remain secured on the grip bar since they have a tendency to pop out after prolonged use. Some of the most secured grip bar locking designs are screw nuts that keep the weight plates in their place, spring locking clips that tighten by locking down the plates by a grove on the grip bar and pop pins that inhibit the plates from coming off. The way in which the plates are finished is also important since no one likes working out with using a rusted weight set.

Most weight plates have a painted black finish while others have a chrome plating that gives the plates a pleasing appearance and a spiffy presentation. Last but not the least are the grip bars which should be able to provide you with much comfort on your hands without being a bit slippery to handle. Most grip bars are chromed plates and have serrated grooves which provide ample grip for the hands. However, there are grip bars, particularly on dumbbells which come with silicone rubber grips to give the hands a comfortable means of gripping the bar along with reducing the moisture on the hands as a result from sweat. Upgradeability is also important as it will enable you to add more plates to your weight lifting set as you progress with your workouts.

After working out for a while, you will want to increase the amount of weight to further develop your muscles. Being able to add a few more pounds is ideal until you reach the max that a dumbbell can accommodate on its grip bar, which is 50 pounds on each hand. Most dumbbells usually come with a number of different plates that you can attach to the grip bar which gives you a variable amount of resistance to train your muscles, particularly the arms and chest. Standard dumbbells for personal home use often come in add-on intervals ranging from as light as 2.5 pounds and up to 10 pounds which is adequate enough for light exercises that tone the arm muscles.

While dumbbells and barbells are the two main options out there, both come in different versions which ale bring advantages as well as disadvantages. Below is a quick description of the different toes you can choose from and information on what type of workout they are designed for.

Types of Olympic Weight Lifting Sets:

 

Dumbbells with weight platesAdjustable Weight Dumbbells:

Adjustable dumbbells came about during the early 1980’s as most dumbbells prior to that time all had fixed plates which cost a substantial amount of money to avail since you had to buy a whole complete set. Not only was it expensive, but it took up a considerable amount of space not to mention the inconvenience of properly storing them. It was during that time that manufacturers decided to come out with dumbbells that have detachable plates in which users can simply remove the plates from the grip bars with a simple screw nut that locks the plates in place. This saves a lot of plates, not to mention grip bars since you can use just one pair with each set of plates. Since that time, it has become an international standard for dumbbell designs and adjustable dumbbells are especially popular with people that workout at home since they save so much space.

Dumbbell with different weightsSelectable Weight Dumbbells:

Selectable dumbbells are the latest design innovations that came from devising a means of conveniently adjusting the dumbbell with a simple selector knob or even a slide selector. The plates themselves remain stationary on their storage cradle until a user wants to lift a certain amount of weight. The selected plates that correspond with the adjustable selector knob are the only ones that are kept on the grip bar, while the other plates remain. This has to be the most interesting feature that selectable  dumbbells have as they offer an easy and convenient way of giving users a faster means of selecting the amount of load that they want to lift, without going through each and every plate, one at a time. This makes plate adjustments, selection and attachment to the grip bar, faster without having to leave idle  plates scattered on the floor. However, these type of selectable dumbbells do not come cheap, since the technique is expensive to implement and they are the most advanced option out there.

Barbell Weight SetThe Barbell:

The barbell is one of the oldest forms of lifting equipment which is considered a classic. The barbell has always been considered as the representation of male masculinity and its basic design has changed very little even though it has been around for more than a century. Despite the simplicity of its design having two plates on which are both mounted on both opposite ends of the grip bar, there had been some considerable improvements using composite materials such as rubber and plastic among others on the design of its plates. Barbells today use plastics or rubber on the plates to protect it from chipping and breaking, along with protecting the steel plates from oxidation and corrosion. Due to the limit of its use, the barbel is often used in developing the arms and chest while in an inclined position on a weight bench. The plates are usually made from heavy duty cast iron materials while others are made from cement and concrete materials encased in a vinyl or rubberized casing to protect the material. Similar to that of adjustable weigh dumbbells, the plates on barbells are securely locked into place by a screw nut that runs on a treaded grip bar.

Conclusion:

There are a lot of different weight sets in the market today that you can choose from depending on your needs. The first thing to consider is what kind of exercises you will be doing. Depending on your level of fitness a smaller weight set may be enough. If you are more advanced and like to lift heavy this is also something you should keep in mind. Quality is another important aspect. Nothing is more frustrating than buying something that you will use several times a week and ending up unsatisfied. Don’t try to save on the wrong end! Last but not least is the space that you have available. Especially people that want to work at home should choose to buy either selectable or adjustable dumbbells since the traditional versions just take up way too much space. If you are not 100% sure what your workout will look like be sure to have a training plan in place so you know what kind of equipment you’ll be needing. Hundreds of fantastic and free training plans can be found at bodybuilding.com!