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Dumbbell exercise is quite an easy way to enhance your muscles and keep a good figure. There are on the market plenty of custom dumbbells that can be classified into many types based on different classification rules. Dumbbells of varied materials present exercisers different using experience and actual exercising effects, which has been discussed in our previous articles. (Click and read more about dumbbell material: What Are Dumbbells Made Of?)
In this article, Speck focuses on the discussion about fixed dumbbells and adjustable dumbbells. What are fixed dumbbells and adjustable dumbbells? What are the differences between and advantages of these two kinds of dumbbells? Which type is worth buying? Follow Speck and you will find out the answers!
I. Fixed Dumbbells
A fixed dumbbell, also called solid dumbbell, has a handle and two lumps of weights at each end of the handle. The weight of a fixed dumbbell can not be adjusted, hence the origin of the name. Fixed dumbbells can be made from cast iron, steel, solid rubber or even plastics. Rubbers are often coated on the shell of dumbbells to offer better grip, a nicer appearance and better cushioning. When dropped on the ground/floor, the rubber coating can really protect you and your floor from being damaged.
Fixed plastic dumbbells are quite cheap because of the low-cost materials. In fact, the plastics are only used as a layer of finish, and the filler or the stuff inside of the dumbbells are often sand and water. As you may have expected, fixed plastic dumbbells are light in weight, fragile in plastic shell, and are not so durable, contributing little to building up muscles. Whereas, these kind of fixed dumbbells are favored by kids and women who require less need for strength.
Fixed dumbbells normally have two shapes of ends, namely, the circular end and the square/hex end. The design of ends plays an important role in controlling the movement of dumbbells. If it is a circular end, the dumbbell will roll away when the ground is not even, which may cause damage to your house furnishings. Dumbbells with square ends are much more practical and versatile as they can be placed nearly everywhere in your houses, obviating the need for worrying them rolling away. A square end helps to prevent this circumstances from happening and is thus recommended.
II. Adjustable Dumbbells
Adjustable dumbbells generally are made by heavy materials such as iron steel, wood steel and chrome. Such a dumbbell is composed of a handle and adjustable weight plates. The adjustable weight plates allow dumbbell exercisers to add weights as the training intensity augments without buying new dumbbells of heavier weights. The economical feature of adjustable dumbbells is also conducive to saving space, allowing exercises to enjoy a larger dumbbell workout space.
On the other hand, the heavy flexible weight plates will make unpleasant noises when installed and taken down. And for people who hate interruption of workouts, they would never choose to train muscles with adjustable dumbbells as they are fiddly and do not allow quick shift of weight plates.
Currently, dumbbells manufacturers have devised some fast-changing mechanisms that can achieve fast loading, unloading, locking and unlocking of weight plates via an in-built rotating dial or a mobile pin. Adjustable dumbbells equipped with such advanced weight plates shifting mechanisms are sold at a comparatively high price yet are worth buying.
III. Fixed Dumbbells VS Adjustable Dumbbells: The Comparison
Both fixed dumbbells and adjustable dumbbells are suitable for training muscles and gaining strength. But they are varied in properties and functions. In order to facilitate your understanding towards them, Speck has made a comparison between them.
3.1 Construction and Durability
The most obvious difference between the two kinds of dumbbells is the construction, or the way they are organized. Fixed dumbbells can not be separated unless they are broken, and there is no weight plate on a fixed dumbbell. In other words, the weight of such a fixed dumbbell has already been set by the dumbbell manufacturer. On the contrary, you can take down weight plates of an adjustable dumbbell easily with the help of shifting mechanisms.
The way these two kinds of dumbbells are assembled is closely related to the durability. Fixed dumbbells are often made by iron steel and chrome inside, and are coated with a layer of rubber to achieve better grip and protective function. There is no moveable part in fixed dumbbells, which means these dumbbells can not be easily dismantled. In fact, quality fixed dumbbells are designed to be used for a lifetime. And if it is a dumbbell made by solid and robust stuff such as cast iron, you can still use it even the ends are slightly damaged. But if a broken dumbbell is filled with sand or water, you should discard it as the weight can not be maintained for good.
Although the adjustable ones are space-saving and money-saving, when it comes to durability, they are overshadowed by the fixed counterparts. Because adjustable dumbbells need a locking system that is in charge of the adjustment of weight plates, they may become metal scraps when the shifting mechanism is damaged totally. In addition, despite the fact that adjustable dumbbells are often made by robust and tough material, the weight plates connecting system inevitably contains parts made by plastics, which may wear down or suffer from frequently heavy use and aging as time goes by.
Compared with fixed dumbbells, adjustable ones do a better job in terms of flexibility. In general, quality and good-sized adjustable dumbbells provide users with weight plates weighing from 1 kg to 20 kg! The flexible choice of weight plates enables you to train every part of your body, and can meet your whole family’s workout requirements.
In contrast, fixed dumbbells are lack in flexibility and can limit your exercise intensity. In other words, if you want to augment the weight or train some other fragile parts of your body, you have to visit online retailers or go to local shops to purchase new dumbbells. Another spending, right? Even though you feel as if you do not have to adjust the exercise intensity, your body does not tell a lie. The body may have already got accustomed to it and your daily exercising becomes minimally effective.
Undoubtedly, it is way more convenient for you to choose a pair of dumbbells of fixed weight than to frequently adjust the weight plates of adjustable dumbbells. Some exercisers even have gradually cultivated their exercising habits, hardly tolerating the interruption to their dumbbell workouts. According to a gym report, about 73% of the surveyed said that they would like to use fixed dumbbells in the gym so that they would exercise at a stretch to their hearts’ content.
Another thing they worry about adjustable dumbbells is the locking system that controls the adjustment of weight plates. Since most of the intricate mechanisms are made by plastics, the quality of adjustable ones can not be 100% guaranteed. And those dumbbell fans are afraid of the breakage of the plastic parts, which may cause weight plates to fall on the ground or even hurt themselves seriously.
3.4 Storage and Space Efficiency
Where to store dumbbells has been vexing home-based dumbbell exercisers since the outbreak of the Covid-19. Fixed dumbbells often occupy many space of the house. Some people even place dumbbells fully under the bed due to limited space. However, if it is a pair of adjustable dumbbells, when not exercising, you can simply collect all the weight plates together with the handle and put them in a place less than just 1 square meter. As mentioned above, adjustable dumbbells have advantages in space efficiency. By adjusting different weight matches, people can do workouts based on different training intensities with only a pair of dumbbells!
3.5 Price and Cost-effectiveness
As you may have known, adjustable dumbbells are much more expensive due to a complete set of weight plates options, whereas fixed dumbbells cost you less. However, in the long run, if you want to build up your muscles with increasing training levels, buying adjustable dumbbells are definitely more economical and cost-effective. In this way, you do not have to buy fixed ones from time to time, instead, your money can be used to pick up other household fitness equipment such as a treadmill or a rowing machine.
IV. Fixed VS Adjustable Dumbbells: The Final Verdict
Both fixed dumbbells and adjustable dumbbells have strengths and shortcomings. Again, the final verdict depends on your real situations. Fixed dumbbells are perfect for gym exercisers. If you decide to offer dumbbells to gyms or equip a gym by yourself, it is then suggested to pick up fixed dumbbells. In addition, if you have a large exercising space at home and care less about budget, then the durable and robust fixed dumbbells are also your first choice. However, if you are considering exercising at home and continuously upgrading your training levels, you are supposed to purchase adjustable dumbbells that are both money-saving and space-saving.
Want to order custom dumbbells in bulk?
You can contact a Chinese dumbbell supplier like “Speck Yoga Fitness Group Limited” who provide strong support from product concept to global shipment.