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Selectorized Dumbbells, Changeable Weights: Advance Your Workout

Updated on November 20, 2014

Adjustable Dumbbell Weights: The Best Choice For a Speedy Workout

Working out is great for so many things, including health, stress and body image. However, if you're anything like me, it's hard to find time to get a good sweat going. Fiddling with clunky weight systems is one of my great frustrations, and I don't have the space to store a hundred pieces of equipment in our small apartment space. Selectorized, adjustable dumbbell weights are a game changer that can drastically improve your exercise regimen.

The concept is simple. Rather than manually affixing various weight plates to a bar, you simply make a weight selection while the dumbbell is sitting in its holder, and lift the weights out. Just like magic you'll have a dumbbell with exactly the weight you specified. Only the plates corresponding to the correct weight will lift up with the bar.

This article will talk about selectorized adjustable dumbbells, and why they're a superior choice when compared to conventional spinlock dumbbells and free weights. We'll also take a close look at a handful of the best options around, and provide a quick review. There's a lot of stuff on the market and I want to make sure you invest your money wisely.

If you have questions or anything to say, I'd encourage you to leave a quick message at the bottom. Let's get started!

Old School!


The Advantages of Selectorized Dumbbells & Weights:

It can be difficult to grasp the key differences between adjustable selectorized weight sets and other more conventional options, so I wanted to outline a few of the key differences here, and talk about why you might opt for it. There is certainly a significant jump in price when compared to traditional free weights, but I'm hoping you'll bear with me!


Because a selectorized dumbbell set sits in a special holder stand, and only the plates you want come up when you select and lift it, the system takes up very little space, especially when compared to traditional free weights. Even spinlock dumbbell sets can't quite compare, because there's more 'sprawl' with a system like that. In a small apartment like I live in, every extra square inch counts, and these dumbbells make life more livable.

It's also a lot more tidy to look at, which will make anyone sharing your space pretty happy.

Easy To Select



I hate threading a spinlock system in place. It takes about a minute to select and replace various plates manually, and during that time your body is undergoing 'cooldown' and you lose momentum. The brilliant thing about adjustable dumbbell free weights is that you can click in the amount you want and just go. There's virtually no downtime needed to switch things up. It's surprising how a small factor like this makes such a huge difference.


Say you require 25 lbs for your regimen, but your wife wants only around 5 lbs for hers. This system allows for a wide range of exercise needs. No more having a stack of 'his and hers' weights eating up room in your house. The usable range is pretty broad for most products on offer.

Bowflex SelectTech Dual Selectorized Dumbbells

The SelectTech weight system is the same as the one pictured at the start of the article, and it's one of the industry leaders in this category. You're probably already familiar with Bowflex from their popular series of home gym equipment which makes use of unique resistance rods instead of gravity.

This system is innovative because it uses a simple dial to let you adjust each dumbbell to a very precise degree. The internals of the system are similar to a combination lock, and readjust themselves automatically.

Bowflex SelectTech Demo

The range of possible weight is really good. It adjusts in increments of 2.5 pounds, up until you reach 25 pounds, at which point it changes to increments of 5 instead. This kind of adjustment is way more precise than you'd find on a spinlock kit, and you can just select and go.

The range goes from 5 lbs at the lightest to 52.5 lbs for the heaviest setting, on each dumbbell. That's a pretty considerable scope to choose from and it tends to make most exercisers pretty happy. It's great, durable and simple, so definitely one of my top choices.


Bayou Fitness: Affordable Dumbbells with Adjustable Weights

If you have a more limited budget, but still want all the benefits of selectorized dumbbell sets, there are a few options to consider. The one I'd lean towards most is this model by Bayou Fitness.

First off, each dumbbell is sold separately, rather than in a set. The weights themselves look sleek and high end with a chrome finish to them.

The selection is easy with a simple adjustable knob that you turn to represent the weight you want, anywhere from 10 pounds all the way up to 50. The selector knob isn't quite as slick as some of the others, and the weight is adjusted in 5 pound increments, but that's a big reason why this dumbbell is more affordable than some of the alternatives out there.

With great looks, easy adjustment and a solid build, these guys are worth checking out. They even come with a one year warranty against defect.


Powerpak Dumbbell Combo With Included Stand:

Yet another selectorized dumbbell set, this one has some good features and has great reviews from other customers.

Much like the others featured here, this dumbbell set has adjustable settings, letting you dial in the amount of weight you want for each side. You can choose the weights in 5 pound increments, starting at 4 pounds and working your way up to a maximum of 45.

These weights are as easy to use as you could ask for. One of the big advantages of this set, in my mind, is the included holder and stand for both sides. It allows easy access to them, and keeps your workout gear stored neatly and attractively. It takes up very little space overall and fits in great in a home gym environment.

The weights themselves are coated, and the handle is rubberized and ergonomic to improve your grip. They're marginally cheaper than the Bowflex, and a solid alternative option.


Heavy Weight Poll

Have you ever used selectorized weights?

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Other Things You Should Consider:

Remember that because these weights are intended to give you lots of weight options, that means they're pretty heavy when they arrive. Each side will be around 50 pounds total. Fortunately, the ones I've show here come with free shipping, but make sure you're capable of moving them around.

If your preference is for a lighter weight set (say around 25 pounds maximum), there are some selectorized dumbbells that have a lower maximum that you might want to look at. 50 pounds is a lot to lug around, especially if it's a set of two!

If you're hoping to put together a portable gym, I'd also recommend some other light and modular pieces of equipment, such as elastic resistance bands and perhaps a chin-up bar of some sort. You can actually get a fairly decent workout with very minimal space if you're clever about it.

Thanks for reading!


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    Post Comment

    • outdoorpursuits profile imageAUTHOR

      Kelly Taylor 

      4 years ago from Vancouver Island, West Coast Canada

      Yes, indeed, the only way to go, glad to help!

    • LAWRTW profile image

      Cassandra Schmigotzki 

      4 years ago from Indianapolis, IN, USA

      Selectorized is definitely the way I want to go! I never heard of that term before though.


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