The Best Workout Bench For Your Home Gym
A workout bench is like an anchor in your home gym. It provides you a designated spot to exercise. All the other fitness equipment like dumbbells, jump ropes, kettlebells, yoga mats, etc, are scattered all around it. Now, if you don’t have the budget, you can go for a basic option. You can use a flat exercise bench for home or just splurge on a bench that can decline and incline.
But, if you are really serious about weight lifting or full-body workouts, a professional workout utility bench is a must. In this article, we are sharing the five best workout benches for home. First, let’s take a brief look at different types of exercise benches.
Flat benches are the most common type of exercise benches available in the market today. This is because they are most affordable. You don’t have to splurge your savings on an exercise bench. As you can tell by that name, a flat bench is nothing more than a simple bench you use to lay down on. There are no adjustments. There is no complicated setup. No complicated instructions.
All you have to do is find an empty space in your apartment and place it there. Viola! Start exercising. Flat benches are ideal for beginners. Because they offer no adjustments, they are a bit limited in which areas of the body you can target with your exercises. However, you can do almost all types of upper body exercises on a flat bench.
You can also do weight bench press, weight flyes, shoulder presses, and some other basic exercises.
Adjustable Exercise Benches
An adjustable Exercise bench is perhaps the most used equipment in a gym. They add a bit more to your exercise options. This is because these benches let you decline or incline the position of your body when necessary. Doing so allows you to target more muscle groups in your body. Particularly, you can target your leg muscles for a more streamlined look.
These benches offer you different height options. Normally, they are built with a pad about 20 inches higher off the floor. You can begin with a little height and then go on increasing it as your stamina builds. Adjustable benches are also good for working on your shoulder and the back muscles.
Besides, adjustable height benches are much safer to use on shoulders, abs, and rotator cuffs. But, they are also expensive than regular flat benches. Overall, if you want more versatility in your exercises, go for an adjustable exercise bench.
Olympic Weight Benches
In case you are building a home gym, you probably don’t need Olympic Weight benches right away. As the name suggests, these benches are ideal for professional athletes vying for a spot in the “Olympics.” These benches are way bigger, wider, and heavier than the previously mentioned options.
It’s competitive grade equipment for advanced weight trainers. With high-grade composite steel construction, these benches are made to handle heavy exercises and hundreds of pounds of weight. They feature thick padding in different areas for additional support from the heavyweight load.
Obviously, these benches come with a wide assortment of attachments. You get dumbbells, squat racks, and more in the same package. So, if you have the budget and your house can accommodate an Olympic weight bench, get one. You will get several exercise options with an Olympic weight bench. However, we do believe a vast majority of people don’t need these benches.
Folding Workout Benches
Thinking of working out in the sun? or perhaps you want to exercise on the beach? No problem, get a folding workout bench. Folding workout benches are ideal for people who live in small apartments or travel often. As they can easily fold, you can pack them away to save space once you are done with exercises. They are also pretty lightweight. So it is easy to carry them around from one place to another.
They are pretty close to a standard flat bench we discussed earlier in terms of features and functions. That means you can do all the basic exercises. However, some folding benches come with adjustable legs, giving you the option to have two separate heights. This can suit different people and adds to the versatility of exercise.
They are a little expensive than flat benches, but not that much. Moreover, you should also keep in mind that they are not very durable. At least not as durable as a flat bench. The ability to fold them up decreases their durability. So, unless space and portability are two of your major concerns, don’t opt for a folding workout bench.
Looking to build those abs as you see in the movies? Get an abdominal bench. Abdominal benches are made to strengthen the abdomen. They let you target the abdominal muscles in a much more convenient way. Therefore, they make your abs workout much more personalized and versatile.
Abdominal Benches are also called sit-up benches. These benches have specially designed foot rollers on end. Additionally, they have padded support pads and a backrest that offers maximum stability, security, and comfort during your exercise sessions. You can incline or decline them as you see suitable for sit-ups, crunches, or other abdominal exercises.
Most of them can also be adjusted to multiple different angles. Therefore you can focus the workout on different muscle groups. That said, we don’t recommend these benches for people who may have chronic problems with their neck, back, or spine. Abdomen benches cost just as much as adjustable benches.
Preacher Curl Bench
Preacher Curl Benches are a very special type of workout bench. They don’t feature as much as other in-home gym benches. And that’s probably because they aren’t really that versatile. They are built specifically for, you guessed it right, preacher curls. And that’s just it. They just help you work on your biceps by isolating them. Nothing more!
All you need to do is place your elbows on the preacher curl bench’s pad and slowly move your arms up and down while holding weights. This way, you can neither use your body bodyweight or other muscles to start the curls. As a result, you get perfect isolation or your biceps and much better muscle gains in the long run.
With a preacher curl bench, you can also do other exercises such as drop sets. It allows you to overload your bicep muscles more than usual. You can also use different grip styles such as reverse grips, traditional supine or prone grips for better results. They aren’t as expensive and take up less space than a regular workout bench.
Marcy Pro PM-507
If you are looking for a flat weight bench, look no further. The Mercy Pro PM-507 can be a perfect addition to any home workout gym. It comes at a very affordable cost, and despite that, it’s incredibly heavy duty. Plus, it’s very comfortable to lay down on.
When people hear the words heavy-duty, they assume it will not be easy to move around the place. But, one reason why we recommend this workout bench is the fact that it’s really easy to move around. The reason? It’s got wheels. While you can’t tell that by looking at the picture, the Marcy Pro has tiny wheels on the base that help you roll it around and move place with ease.
However, it does have some limitations. As it’s a basic flat workout bench, there are no shiny bells and whistles. There are no additional features. So, it might limit what exercises you can perform with it. But for someone who is just starting their home gym routine, we can’t think of a better option. The Marcy Pro is a simple yet comfortable, durable, and portable flat workout bench that’s sure to bring a lot to a beginner’s home gym.
UBOWAY Adjustable Weight Bench
For people who work out with dumbbells on a regular basis, Uboway’s adjustable weight bench is an ideal option. It’s brimming with features, comfortable to use, portable, and easy to set up.
You can easily move this workout bench into several different positions. This way, you can target specific muscle groups with ease. So, it’s a very versatile bench. Moreover, the reason it’s so comfortable is that it comes packed with high-density foam. It feels much fuller than the competitors and can handle everyday workout stress like a pro without breaking down.
That’s not all.
The Uboway’s adjustable bench comes fully assembled. You don’t have to struggle with different nuts and bolts to make it ready for the exercise. All you have to do is remove the packaging, move it to a suitable location in your home gym, and start training. Cool, right?
However, like all good things, there is a downside to Uboway’s otherwise excellent adjustable weight bench. It’s very lightweight. So, you should be very careful while using this bench. And if you are a little on the heavier side of the weight spectrum, we wouldn’t recommend this option.
Gymenist Exercise Foldable Workout Bench
Are you an outdoors workout enthusiast? Or perhaps you want an easy-to-carry and highly portable workout bench. This is an excellent option at a very economical price point.
The design seems pretty sturdy, and there is enough padding all around to make your exercise sessions as comfortable as possible. On top of that, it comes fully assembled. So, there’s no hassle with the setup.
Moreover, you can easily fold up the Gymenist Exercise foldable workout bench within minutes and carry it under your arms to wherever you want to. It’s an adjustable bench and has three preset positions. With these three positions, you can exercise at three different angles and target a wide range of muscle groups.
And that’s not the only thing we love about the Gymenist. We really like the adjustable cushion attached to the back. You can even move it up or down. As you please, make sure you are getting the maximum amount of support during your workout session.
As it is pretty lightweight, make sure the gym floor is not slippery, and there is enough grip to make it stable as you exercise.
Marcy Utility Upright Exercise Bench
Don’t get confused by the word “Upright” in the title. Sure, it’s an Upright exercise bench, but it’s also highly adjustable. You can easily adjust it the way you deem fit and target multiple muscle groups.
It’s very sturdy as it has a solid built. Excellent for all types of basic exercises!
Another reason why we included it in our recommended workout benches list is its excellent use of high-density and durable foam rollers. As you can see in the picture, there are two foam rollers. Not only are they the safest, but they also provide excellent protection while exercising. Besides, they help reduce muscle pain after long exercise sessions. So you can exercise for longer periods and at much harder rates.
Despite so many positives, we noticed one problem with this option. It seems small. Especially if you are over 6 feet tall, the padded seat and rollers can be a little uncomfortable to use and may not even fit you altogether.
Bowflex 5.1 Adjustable Bench
When it comes to adjustable benches, Bowflex is another excellent option to consider. Bowflex is a reputable brand, and they have been producing the finest quality exercise equipment for over three decades.
As opposed to the standard three positions, the Bowflex adjustable bench provides 4 adjustment positions. At each position, the bench remains stable on the ground without compromising on your comfort.
It can be a little difficult to assemble at first. But after a few times, you will be able to set it up within 20 minutes. Once fully assembled, this bench has a very small footprint. Therefore, if you are short on space, it can be a real lifesaver. You can also fold it up if needed.
You also notice how heavy-duty this machine really is. Load it up to the max (600 pounds), and it wouldn’t break a sweat.
We only wish Bowflex had made the seat adjustable. That would have added a lot to its versatility. Even then, this adjustable bench is a fantastic option for any home gym. It has a well-built frame, remains stable, and is an overall premium adjustable bench from a premium brand. It is sure to last a lifetime of extensive use.
But, you should also be ready to pay a premium to get this equipment.
How Much do Weight Benches typically cost?
Typically, the price of a weight bench starts anywhere from $50 and goes up to a few hundred. The average cost is approximately $100, but you can get a decent quality basic bench at $70. However, if you want something more advanced and with more features (i.e., a multipurpose workout bench), be ready to shell out anywhere from $200 to $350. You can get a premium quality workbench for your home gym at this price point.
What to Look for When in the Best Adjustable Weight Bench?
Most of the time, people purchase a workout bench as their first equipment. Afterward, they buy the rest of the equipment to match the aesthetics and style of their bench. And this is the best way to avoid disappointment in the future. So, you, too, should get the best workout bench you can get for the budget and then think about purchasing the rest of the equipment for your home gym. This way, you will not regret your selection later on.
Below are a few things to consider when you go out to purchase your ideal workout bench.
As discussed previously, there are fixed benches, and then there are adjustable workout benches. Both of these main types can be an excellent option depending on your needs. However, the best adjustable workout bench will provide much more versatility in terms of exercise. You can incline or decline it at different angles to target different body muscles. This way, you can perform much more exercise on an adjustable bench.
On the other hand, a flat bench will offer fewer options. But, it will be much cheaper. If you go out in the market and compare the prices of a high-end and premium flat bench with a basic adjustable bench, you will notice that the former still comes at a much better price point.
The second most important thing to keep in your mind is the weight capacity a bench can hold. Before making any decision, consider whether the bench matches your weight, height, and strength measurements. Usually, a bench can support the maximum weight capacity mentioned on the packaging (or bench). Also, check how maximum load capacity of the bar rest. Will it be able to support bar s that you exercise with?
Several cheaper options in the market support up to 300lbs. This is not enough. Neither is is it a safe option if your weight touches that mark. The good thing is, there are excellent options for everyone. No matter their weight. Some premium benches support a weight capacity of 1000 lbs or even more.
The next thing to consider is your comfort. When it comes to comfort, first of all, check whether the backrest is big enough for you. It should be big enough to let you exercise comfortably. Secondly, is the seat decent and comfortable for you? If it pinches your back, you won’t be able to exercise on it for longer periods. Thirdly, if you want an adjustable workout bench, ensure its process of adjustability is convenient and comfortable. Can you do it easily? No one should waste their precious time getting the bench height fixed when they should be spending time exercising and building muscle. Having easy adjustments become more important if there are multiple users.
Go for a durable bench. Normally, a flat workout bench is much more durable than an adjustable one. The reason is simple. It doesn’t have any hinges or moving parts like an adjustable bench. When more moving parts and mechanics are involved, they tend to increase the wear and tear of the equipment. Such equipment also tends to require much more maintenance.
But keep in mind, the durability of a bench also depends on the brand you are going after. If it’s a premium quality brand, their adjustable workout bench will also be of premium quality. So, there’s that as well.
Is it Compact/Easy to Move Around?
If your place is big enough to just leave your equipment there and not move it, you can skip reading this section.
But, if you will be moving your home gym equipment here and there, go for a flat or travel bench. These two types of benches are ideal for travelers as they don’t weigh as much as adjustable benches. Consider whether you will really be exercising that much, or you can use a simple, lightweight flat workout bench as a starting point. If you are a frequent traveler and love exercising outdoors, opt for a foldable bench. These benches can be folded and stored in the trunk of your car or under your bed. When you are done exercising, simply store them away. This way, you can also save space.
How to Use a Weight Bench?
Using a weight bench is pretty straightforward. You have to choose an exercise you want to do, then set up the bench, followed by selecting an appropriate weight. If you are an absolute novice and wondering how to go about it, then don’t worry! We have got you covered. In the following paragraphs, we will explain each step in detail. Read on!
Choose Your Exercises
You will need to choose an exercise on the basis of the workout bench you have chosen. This is because, as we already discussed, you cannot perform all exercises on a single bench. Each bench has limitations when it comes to different exercises. So, make sure you consider all the bench features and then select the right exercise to target specific muscle groups.
Always keep in mind that a fixed flat workout bench or an abdominal bench will let you do fewer exercises than an adjustable bench. Likewise, an adjustable bench with more angles will be more versatile with exercises than an adjustable bench with fewer angles support. It all comes down to the features.
Set Up The Bench
Next, you will need to set up the bench. If you are working with an adjustable bench, you will have to adjust it accordingly for every exercise. For instance, you want to do an incline bench press. First of all, you have to adjust the incline to an angle you are most comfortable with. For beginners, experts suggest less incline to avoid causing any injury.
Once you have adjusted the incline, you have to adjust the seat to fit the incline. You can take help from the instruction manual included in your package or watch youtube tutorials if you feel lost about how to adjust the incline of the bench. After adjusting the seat, check whether it is comfortable enough to perform exercises.
If the seat is even a bit uncomfortable, you won’t be able to perform the exercise correctly.
Choose Your Weights
Now is the time to choose your wights. You will need to select weights for every exercise you perform. Firstly, decide whether you will be using dumbbells or barbells. Next, you will have to assess the right weight for a specific exercise. You can use barbells for some exercises and dumbbells for others.
Dumbbells are excellent if you want to train your arm muscles. They help you target both arms equally. Most people have a dominant arm. If they use barbells to train arms, then the stronger arm takes more weight. Resultantly, weaker arm workouts less. Barbells can be a little difficult to handle for novices initially. They are a good option if you want to target large muscle groups.
Other Important Tips
As you perform an exercise on a workout bench, both of your feet must be lying flat on the floor. This way, your feet won’t glide off the floor, and you will remain safe and stable.
Secondly, ensure that your head remains in contact with the bench. This way, you can avoid any neck injuries, and especially neck pain.
Thirdly, your hips should always touch the back of the bench as you are performing an exercise.
When you are following these three tips, you create a sort of natural arch in your back. It assists you in better engage all the core muscle groups while exercising.
Best Workout Bench – Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the frequently asked questions and their answers to help you further clear any doubts or misinformation.
Are weight benches worth the money?
Of course, a workout weight bench is worth every penny. In fact, it’s the most important exercise equipment you can buy. It’s incredibly versatile and lets you perform different exercises to help target most of your body muscles. For example, you can do seated presses to bench presses, dumbbell row, and concentration curls. It even lets you do exercises like bent-over rows. That’s why we believe weight benches are a piece of essential equipment when it comes to any strength training exercise.
How many sets of bench press should I do?
Well, that’s an incredibly subjective question. The number of sets of bench press depends on the person who is doing the exercise. How experienced they are and how much weight they are comfortable with.
For example, if you are bench pressing with more weights, then you can do fewer sets. For building muscles, experts suggest around 6 to 12 reps of less weight. You can easily do this in 3 to 5 sets based on what you like.
What can I use instead of a bench?
In case you don’t have access to a bench, you can utilize several other things in your home as a bench. The best choice? We say furniture such as a chair, sides of a sofa, or a table (if it’s not made of glass) is ideal for use as a bench alternative.
Before using anything, make sure it’s nice and sturdy. Otherwise, you will end up injuring yourself. Besides, push up the surface to the wall for additional support.
Should I widen my bench grip?
Well, it really depends on which muscles you want to target with your exercise. In case you are taking a wider grip, you will have less motion range. It means you will have to utilize bigger chest muscles. So, it’s excellent for power weight lifters.
Widening your bench grip is a great idea if you have strong pectorals. Always keep in mind your strengths before lifting.
How many times a week should I do bench press?
Simple answer: twice a week for better results.
Long answer: Make sure that your workout routine is targeting all of your key muscle groups as you exercise throughout the week. To do that, you have to make the right amount of each and every move. Twice a week is, therefore, ideal for strength training. For example, you can spend one of these days improving weight you can lift and spend the other day focusing on how many reps you can do.
That’s pretty much all you need to know about Workout benches. We hope now you have a much better understanding of this equipment. Additionally, we expect that our recommendations will have given you an incentive to get one for your home gym too. Workout utility bench can be an incredibly useful option provided you know which muscle groups you want to target and how. So, good luck, and thank you for staying with us!