Are you ready to take weightlifting seriously? If you’re ready to take the next step in building your muscles and sculpting your chest, back and arms, the most obvious equipment you’ll need is a weight bench and a great set of dumbbells. With this versatile equipment, you can perform numerous exercises from the bench press to the plank, dumbbell pullovers, dumbbell rows and more. Then, once you make use of your bench on a regular basis, you’ll quickly notice a difference as you grow in strength and size.

If you’re ready to purchase your own bench, you’ll certainly want to learn about the different types that are available. From the adjustable bench to the folding bench style and a simple flat bench, there are many options to choose from. In this complete guide, you’ll learn about what each bench offers, their advantages, disadvantages and how to make your final choice. We’ll also point out some of the hottest bench products on the market in complete product reviews that will tell you everything you need to know about these benches. Then, fully informed, you can purchase your bench with confidence.

What Types of Weight Benches Are There in the Market?

Fit woman lifting dumbbellsFrom bench set products to simple flat  benches, preacher curl benches and the Olympic bench, there are many different types of benches. What do all of them have in common? All styles are designed to help you lift weights. Whether you lift dumbbells or a barbell, the bench can help you achieve the proper position for lifting the weights. Between adjusting the bench and your position, you can perform a range of exercises on the bench.

Weightlifting offers many health advantages, from weight loss to increased strength and of course, a more attractive figure. For those who want to build muscle mass, weightlifting is also the answer. Even skinny individuals can combine the use of a quality weight gainer with weight lifting to add muscle to their physique. With your own weightlifting bench at home, you’ll have no excuses about working out and you can avoid that drive to the gym.

So, how do you know which one to purchase? Here are the basic types you can find and some examples of the best weight lifting bench products for sale:

The Adjustable Weight Bench

The adjustable bench covers a range of styles. Basically, it means that the bench’s position can be adjusted or changed. The main positions are flat, inclined and declined. By adjusting the bench, you can change which muscles will be targeted by standard bench exercises, making your workout ever more effective. Typically these benches feature a “seat” area that remains flat and a longer section that is moved up and down. Some adjustable weight lifting benches also feature a leg brace that makes the declined position easier and safer.

What are some of the best options on the market? Here are our favorites:

Universal UB300 by Nautilus

Universal UB300 by NautilusThe Universal UB300 adjustable bench is a great choice for a basic weight lifting bench. The bench has earned its excellent position thanks to a reasonable price and great quality backed up by real users who rave about how well it performs.

  • Adjustable to 5 positions: -10, 0, 15, 30 and 45 degrees
  • Features leg brace
  • Maximum weight load of 430 pounds (includes user and weights)
Who Makes It

Nautilus is a worldwide home fitness company that owns brands such as Bowflex, Schwinn and Universal. A well-known player in the industry, Nautilus is known for creating quality equipment for both personal use. Nautilus is based in the USA in Vancouver, Washington.

The Bottom Line

This is a solid choice for an adjustable bench. The only possible downside is that it isn’t adequate in size for the tallest users who are over 6 feet tall, according to reviews. Otherwise, for the price, the bench offers great quality and versatility. It has all of the basics you’d expect in a bench, including the leg brace, adjustable incline and decline, a comfortable surface and stability.

The Olympic Weight Bench

An Olympic bench is more of a bench set. Typically these benches include not only the bench, but also a rack where you can store your weight plates, barbells or even use it for bench presses. A great olympic bench will include these features, but may also include adaptations such as a preacher curl pad or a leg curling feature.

One important note to make about true Olympic benches and racks is that they are made to accommodate Olympic equipment. Olympic bellbars and weight plates are made differently than standard weights. Not only are Olympic bellbars made to handle a greater amount of weight, but the bar is 2 inches in diameter at the ends, meaning that weight plates also have 2 inch holes in the center. This differs from the standard weights which are based on a 1 inch diameter.

Olympic bench products and equipment are considered superior to standard equipment, but they are also more expensive. Standard equipment is usually fine for the average amateur user. But given the additional functionality of an Olympic bench, it may be worth it to you to purchase one of these benches. It may cost more initially, but you’ll have much further to grow as you work on advancing your fitness.

So, now that you’re familiar with Olympic weight lifting benches, take a look at our top recommended product:

XRS20 Weight Bench by Gold’s Gym

XRS20 Weight Bench by Gold’s GymThis product offers great value for money. You’ll get a load of use out of this bench that features many adjustable positions and features that allow you to complete long, varied workouts. In addition to the bench which is packed with features, this fantastic Gold’s Gym product also comes with a rack for weights and performing bench presses.

  • Leg developer included in the bench, allowing you to perform leg lifts, leg curls and more.
  • Preacher pad included for isolating biceps and forearms
  • The bench can be adjusted based to lay flat, decline or incline in several positions
  • Features adjustable safety spotters for safe bench press and squat exercises
  • 600 lb weight capacity including user and weights
Who Makes It

Gold’s Gym is best known for its chain of fitness centers. Now, the company also licenses its name to fitness equipment such as this bench. The brand is large and quite popular. There are Gold’s Gym fitness centers all around the world. There are many Gold’s Gym brand products, most of which have achieved great ratings.

The Bottom Line

Given the very reasonable price, anyone looking to set up a bench with weights should consider this very complete model. Not only will you be able to perform standard bench exercises with this equipment, but the features allow many other exercises to be performed. The leg developer, preacher pad and rack really extend the use you can get from the product. Glowing reviews and the low price make this Olympic bench a steal!

Folding Weight Lifting Bench

Want to use your bench in your bedroom and then tuck it away under your bed or in a closet? Then you need a folding weight lifting bench. Offering many of the same features as adjustable weight benches, these type of benches go one step further. A folding weight bench will either collapse or fold into a compact unit making for easier transport and storage.

Despite the fact that these benches are easier to store, they still perform when it comes to stability and features. Here are some of the best folding bench products on the market:

Body-Solid Folding Bench by Powerline

Body-Solid Folding Bench by PowerlineWith an impressive 4.5 star user rating, the Body-Solid weight bench combines function and performance in this fantastic folding bench. Featuring 7 adjustment positions, this bench is perfect for completing your entire bench routine. The bench also folds to just 9 inches high and 57 inches long, meaning you can slide it under the bed or tuck it upright into a closet.

  • 7 adjustable positions including flat, nearly vertical, a range of inclined positions and a -18 degree decline position
  • Folds for easy storage
  • Comes already assembled
  • Features wheels on the bottom for easy moving when the bench is collapsed
  • Weight capacity of 500 lbs including user and weights
Who Makes It

Powerline is a well-known fitness equipment company. You can find their products online or in retail stores like Sears. Owned by the larger company, Body Solid, Powerline produces high quality products.

The Bottom Line

For a fully functional bench that you can also tuck away for storage, the Body-Solid bench is a great choice. While it may not be the cheapest option on the market, it is also a solid choice given its high weight capacity and excellent record of performance. Many users also love the fact that no assembly is required. Overall, this bench is a great choice!

Exercise Bench by Gymenist

Exercise Bench by GymenistLooking for a cheap folding bench? This bench fits the bill and despite the price tag, it still offers full performance. Just $109.99 will buy you this versatile, adjustable weight bench that also includes a leg brace. Weighing just 33 lbs, this folding weight bench is very easy to transport and store.

  • Adjustable cushion included
  • No assembly required
  • Folds up into a very compact package that measures 34 inches long and 10 inches high
  • 6 different adjustable back positions and 3 different seat positions
  • Weight capacity of 500 lbs including user and weights
  • Affordable Price: $109.99 at the time this article was written
Who Makes It

Gymenist is a fitness equipment company that makes everything from wearable weights to yoga mats, dumbbells and more. A USA based company, their products are sold online and through major retailers such as Walmart. Based on their great customer reviews, this company offers quality products.

The Bottom Line

This flat folding bench is affordable, easy to fold and offers great performance. If you’re looking for ultimate convenience for transportation and storage, but don’t want to miss out on adjustability and stability, this bench is for you. Because it folds up to a compact size, but doesn’t skimp on adjustability for your workouts, it could easily be the best folding weight bench on the market. Based on the enthusiastic reviews, the bench meets customer expectations and holds up well. As far as a cheap folding weight bench goes, you won’t find anything better than this.

Travel Weight Bench by Power Block

Travel Weight Bench by Power BlockAre you seeking a very small folding bench? If portability and storage are your number one goals, you may also consider this Power Block bench. While the Gymenist model is a great compact option, the Power Block becomes even thinner when folded up. This small folding bench even comes with a handle and shoulder strap so that you can carry the bench with ease. In addition to its great portability and size features, this folding bench also performs. Use it in the flat position or on a slight incline or decline.

  • 2 adjustable positions
  • No assembly required
  • Folds easily and features built-in handle and strap for easy transport
  • Folds to a compact 40 inch long, 8 inch high unit and weighs just 33 lbs
  • Weight capacity of 550 lbs including user and weights
  • Affordable price: $103.87 at the time this article was written
Who Makes It

Power Block is a fitness equipment company known for their unique dumbbells. Based in the US, Power Block now sells their products through authorized dealers around the world. They achieve great ratings for their products, suggesting that quality is important to this company.

The Bottom Line

This small folding bench offers easy portability, but also great functionality. The great reviews show that customers are highly satisfied with the product, which makes it easy to buy this bench with confidence. For a quality, compact, but high performing product, consider this small folding bench.

The Best Bench: A Checklist to Making Your Final Decision

Woman lifting while laying on weight benchMaking your final decision on the best bench will depend on your fitness goals, budget and how important portability is to you. Here are some considerations to keep in mind:

  • Dumbbells or Bars?

If you’re planning on using plate weights with a bar, you’ll also need a rack. The Olympic bench options often come with this equipment included. However, other benches probably won’t include a squat or bench press rack. This means you’ll be stuck either purchasing another piece of equipment or using only dumbbells.

  • Leg Brace

Not all benches include a leg brace. It’s a matter of personal preference whether you’d like the leg brace or not. This feature is most useful when you use a decline position, as it helps you feel secure. Make sure that the model you pick includes a leg brace if this is important to you.

  • The Adjustability

How adjustable is the bench? This refers to how many positions of incline/decline you can achieve. Keep in mind that some, like the Power Block travel bench only allow for two positions, which is very minimal. Others allow a full range of positions including nearly vertical. Depending on the exercises you’re hoping to perform, you’ll enjoy having a large range of adjustability.

  • Weight Capacity

When purchasing your bench, make sure you have room to grow in strength. If between your body weight and what you can press, you already see yourself reaching the upper limits of the bench’s capacity, keep looking. This will allow you to increase your weight when lifting as you continue to grow in strength.

  • Portability

How easily do you want to be able to move your weight lifting bench? Is storage an issue? An Olympic bench, for example, is not easy to tuck away in a closet. However, many of the folding bench models can easily be hidden under your bed or in a closet. If you have a dedicated gym space, this probably won’t be an issue.

With these considerations in mind, you’ll be able to find the best bench for your needs.

The Bottom Line on Purchasing Your Weight Bench

Imagine, with your own bench and weights, you’ll be able to complete your whole weights routine without bothering to head to the gym. From the bench press to dumbbell flyes and pullovers, a full ab workout and jump training, you’ll address all major muscle groups in your body. Then, by adjusting the bench angle, you can target even more muscle groups.

This guide should help you as you make your decision about which weight lifting bench to buy. While there are many options available, with careful consideration of your needs and preferences, you’ll be able to choose a bench you’ll love. The top 5 benches described above are a great starting point from which to choose a quality bench that will meet your needs.  

Do you already have a great weight bench you love? Tell us about the features, its performance and why you love it in the comments below.