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Best Adjustable Dumbbells – UK Reviews

If you’re sick of battling it out for one of the coveted squat racks at your gym, it may be time to start investing in home gym equipment.

Adjustable dumbbells on a stand

Imagine no more waiting for machines, being able to sneak in a few extra sets of curls periodically throughout the day and getting to customise the gym specifically to your needs. It sounds like a perfect setup for many of us, but it doesn’t come cheap.

If you start adding up the price of all the equipment you use at the gym right now, it may quickly add up to be more than a lifetime’s worth of gym memberships. However, there are some ways you can cut costs.

Instead of buying an entire rack of dumbbells, you can buy a single set of adjustable dumbbells to save money and space. It can be daunting since there are so many brands to choose from. We’ve made it easy for you by doing our own research and simplifying the pros and cons of each model for you.

Keep reading to find out how the best adjustable dumbbells on the market stack up against each other and which brands give you the most for your money.

Editor’s Choice
Bowflex SelectTech Adjustable Weights

Bowflex SelectTech Adjustable Weights



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ATIVAFIT Adjustable Dumbbell

ATIVAFIT Adjustable Dumbbell




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Great Value
BRAINGAIN 24kg Adjustable Dumbbell Pair

BRAINGAIN 24kg Adjustable Dumbbell Pair

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Powerblock Elite EXP Adjustable Dumbbell

Powerblock Elite EXP Adjustable Dumbbell

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ISOGYM Adjustable Dumbbell 2.5kg-25kg

ISOGYM Adjustable Dumbbell 2.5kg-25kg

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Best Budget
York Fitness 20kg Cast Iron Dumbbell Set

York Fitness 20kg Cast Iron Dumbbell Set

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Note: There’s a lot more information below but clicking the above links will take you to current prices, further information and customer reviews on Amazon.

Adjustable Dumbbell Reviews

Generally, a more expensive set of adjustable dumbbells comes with a few extra features compared to cheaper models and likely to offer a higher maximum weight. They may also give you the ability to change weight in smaller increments and provide a simpler mechanism for changing the weight.

However, just because a set of dumbbells is more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean they are better. We’ve analysed some of the most popular sets on the market and compiled a list of the features of each. Keep reading to learn which set is best for you.

The ultimate in space-saving designed, this set of dumbbells replaces up to fifteen pairs, making room in your home gym for other pieces of equipment. All you have to do is turn the dial to adjust your weights.


It’s so easy to change the weight settings on these bowflex weights that it almost seems pointless to own any other kind. It doesn’t take up a lot of space and there are plenty of weight variations. The durable moulding gives these dumbbells a smooth life off and without the clang of metal, your training becomes even more peaceful. The Bowflex Selecttech are a great addition to any at-home set up.


Things We Like
  • Weight range: 2-24kg (5-52.5lbs) per dumbbell
  • Easy dial makes it simple to select weights
Things we don’t like
  • Bowflex advises not to do press-ups with these, so renegade rows aren’t possible
  • Might not be suitable for everyone if you’re accustomed to the feel and use of traditional weights

The ATIVAFIT Adjustable Dumbbell offers a versatile and space-saving solution for home fitness enthusiasts. Constructed with durable chrome-plated steel, it provides a solid and secure feel during workouts. The adjustable weight feature allows for a seamless transition from 2.5kg to 25kg in 2.5kg increments, eliminating the need for multiple dumbbells and saving valuable space. They feature a quick and efficient weight-switching mechanism, taking only 5-10 seconds, making it suitable for high-intensity workouts.

The compact design is ideal for basic body workouts, core fitness, strength exercises, and heavy leg lifts. The handle design, though longer, offers a good grip, eliminating the need for gym gloves. The accompanying base, however, may pose a risk of floor damage and requires caution on certain surfaces.

Overall, the ATIVAFIT Adjustable Dumbbell is praised for its functionality, space efficiency, and durability, making it a valuable investment for those committed to hypertrophy or strength training at home.


The ATIVAFIT Adjustable Dumbbell stands out for their durability, space-saving design, and efficient weight adjustment. While there are occasional issues with the dumbbells sticking together )until they are worn in) and potential floor damage from the base, they are excellent for home workouts.


Things We Like
  • Durable chrome-plated steel construction.
  • Adjustable weight from 2.5kg to 25kg in 2.5kg increments.
  • Compact design saves space.
  • Quick and efficient weight-switching mechanism.
  • Versatile for various workouts.
Things we don’t like
  • Dumbbells may stick together until worn in.
  • The base can potentially damage the floor.

The BRAINGAIN 24kg Adjustable Dumbbells offer a space-saving and versatile solution for home workouts. With the ability to adjust between 15 different weights, ranging from 2.5kg to 24kg, these dumbbells provide convenience and cost-effectiveness. The easy-to-use dial mechanism allows for quick weight adjustments, and the advanced safety locking mechanism ensures stability during various exercises. Constructed from high-quality cast iron, the dumbbells feature a large non-slip handle for a secure grip, catering to a wide range of workout needs.

They are sturdily constructed but being hypercritical we did notice some minor issues with the construction process, such as a slight misalignment of welded brackets, but overall, the set is commended for its durability and aesthetic appeal.

These adjustable weights cater to both beginners and professionals, making it a valuable addition to any home gym.


The BRAINGAIN 24kg Adjustable Dumbbells stand out for their versatility, ease of use, and space-saving design. While some users mention minor alignment issues during construction and slight awkwardness when returning the dumbbells to the cradle, the overall consensus is positive. The set's quality, efficient weight adjustments, and customer service make it a reliable and valuable investment for home fitness enthusiasts.

Things We Like
  • Adjustable between 2.5kg to 24kg in 15 increments.
  • Easy-to-use dial mechanism for quick weight adjustments.
  • Advanced safety locking mechanism for stability.
  • High-quality cast iron construction.
  • Ergonomic handle for a comfortable and secure grip.
  • Space-saving design with a dedicated tray for weight changes.


Things we don’t like
  • Can be slightly awkward to put back in the cradle.

Powerblock’s set allows you to change the weight by using a selector pin. The mechanism is similar to the pin system used by weight stacks on machines at the gym.

If you’re used to lifting with traditional dumbbells, it may take a few workouts to get used to the square design. However, the design makes it simple to adjust the weight in seconds, and they offer a more balanced design than traditional dumbbells.

A perk of the Powerblock set is that they allow you to increase the weight by 2.5 lbs (1.14 kg) intervals. This may be particularly useful if you’re trying to bust through a plateau. You may also find the small weight range helpful when lifting fairly lightly on an exercise like lateral raises where a small jump in weight makes a big difference.

This set maxes out at 50 lbs (22.68 kg), so for many of us, they should cover most of our dumbbell exercises except for maybe some rowing and pressing exercises. If you do find yourself close to the 50 lb limit, you can either try switching to a stricter form of the exercise or increasing your volume.

Even if these are the only piece of equipment in your home gym, you could easily design an entire workout around them. They’re also small enough that you can keep them in your closet when you’re not using them.

The compact design allows you to bring an entire wall of weights into your home. The selector pin makes switching weights a breeze so that even if you’re doing a circuit, you can set the next weight during your rest period.


Overall, these weights provide you with good value for your money and a lot of flexibility in your workouts. They’re cheaper than many of their competitors and give you the option to increase your weight by as little as 2.5 lbs. They might not be suitable for you if you have very large hands.

Things We Like
  • Only slightly bigger than regular dumbbells
  • Allow you to change weight quickly
  • Feel natural and don’t impede you for most lifts such as biceps curls, shoulder press, and dumbbell bench press
  • Provides the option to change in 2.5-pound increments
  • Comfortable handle


Things we don’t like
  • May make a clanking noise when you use them
  • Dropping the weights may affect their durability
  • Handles may be tight if you have very large hands
  • 50 lbs might not be enough weight for you on certain lifts


The ISOGYM adjustable dumbbell set features 16 weight sections, perfect for drop sets and progressive overload training. No need to set pins or align plates with this set – just twist the dial to adjust the weight.


This set of adjustable dumbbells is built to last. Considering what they do they aren’t too expensive, but bearing mind they are not sold as a pair so you are going to need to order a couple.

The mechanism to change weights words very well, and they are are something that will serve you for a long time to come.

Things We Like
  • Quick weight change adjustment makes it easy to switch between weights
  • Weights are displayed in both kg and lb


Things we don’t like
  • Doesn’t come as a set so you have to order two
  • Thinnest plates don’t stand on their own, so storage can be a little challenging


Adjustable dumbbells need to be easy to use and be solid. This York 20kg black cast iron set does exactly that. Easily incorporate heavier weights into your workouts with the simple twist of a sprocket. The versatility of this set makes it perfect for everyone to use.


This adjustable dumbbell set features spinlock collars, which isn’t seen often in these kinds of sets. We love this though because it reduces the chance of internal mechanisms breaking or not working properly. The one downside of spinlock collars is that, well, they spin. So heavy curls might feel a little off balance, especially if the collars aren’t completely locked into place.

Things We Like
  • Easy storage and carry with included case
  • Spinlock collars are simple and can’t break


Things we don’t like
  • Manually having to change plates takes a lot of time
  • Weights only go up to 20kg, so not suitable for everyone

What Are Adjustable Dumbbells?

Adjustable dumbbells are a set that can be set to a variety of different weights. When you’re at the gym, there’s usually a rack of dumbbells ranging from a few kilograms up to about 40-50 kg.

If you have a home gym, your options are to buy a whole rack, buy a single dumbbell and stick to that weight indefinitely, or buy a set that you can adjust.

Buying dozens of different dumbbells isn’t cost-effective or practical for most people. Buying one non-adjustable set isn’t a great option either. For example, if you bought a 20 kg set of dumbbells, your only way of progressing your workouts is by increasing the volume of your lifts. However, unless you want to end up doing hundreds of reps per session, there’s an easier way.

This is where adjustable dumbbells come in. With that one set, you can work through a range of weights with ease without disrupting your sets very much.

What Are the Different Types of Adjustable Dumbbells?

There are two types of adjustable dumbbells — those with spinlocks that you can manually adjust and dial-a-weight style ones.

Spinlock dumbbells are like tiny barbells. Each one comes with weight plates that you can manually load and lock with a spinning clip. They’re generally much cheaper than the dial adjustable dumbbell. However, they usually don’t let you go as heavy, and they’re slower to load. 

The dial dumbbell style offer several advantages. Most importantly, you can quickly change the weight on them. If you plan on using the dumbbells for circuits or for a workout where you need to alternate between weights often, you’ll be better off with this style so you don’t spend half your workout changing plates – simple twist a dial to select the desired weight and you are ready to go.

However, the dial-a-weight sets are generally about three times more expensive than the spinlock types. They usually max out around 20-25 kg depending on the brand.

Benefits of Adjustable Dumbbells

Buying a pair of adjustable dumbbells is a great investment in your home gym. Even though some sets, especially the dial-a-weight variety, can be a big upfront expense, over time they can save you money by reducing the number of dumbbells you need to buy. If you take care of them, they should last for a long time.

If you live in an apartment or have a limited amount of room for building your home gym, you’re probably concerned with being space-efficient. Adjustable dumbbells are a huge space saver. Instead of having to dedicate an entire wall to a huge rack of various sizes, you can just have one pair of dumbbells instead.

If you ever decide to move to a new home, the move will be much easier too without having to worry about moving a whole wall of weights.

Do you consistently include dumbbell work into your weekly routine? Lifting with dumbbells offers several advantages over lifting with barbells. Since each of your hands move individually, your small stabiliser muscles have to work harder to control the plane of motion. These may help you correct muscle imbalances since each limb has to do the same amount of work.

If you look at the bodies of athletes in sports like tennis where one arm is used significantly more than the other, it’s not uncommon to see that the athletes have a huge disparity in muscle mass between their dominant and non-dominant sides.

No matter whether you’re a competitive bodybuilder or just lifting to look good, you can include dumbbell work into your routine to prevent building these types of muscular imbalances.

Considerations Before Buying Adjustable Dumbbells

Before you buy a pair, it would be a good idea to ask yourself how heavy you plan on lifting. Most go up to about 20-25 kg so anything above this and they might not fit your purpose.

If you spend most of your time under 20-25 kg but you like to do a few heavier sets in your routine, you can add a few extra kilograms to your lifts by wearing wrist weights. If you often lift over 30 kg, you may want to invest in one or two sets of regular dumbbells and save the adjustable ones for your accessory exercises.

They come in a variety of materials including plastic, chrome-plated steel, and cast iron. You get what you pay for. Plastic weights are the cheapest and are the easiest on your floors if you drop them, but they likely won’t last long as metal weights.

Iron weights are the most durable but can rust if they get damp. Before buying a set of dumbbells, ask yourself what your goal is for your home gym. Do you want something temporary or are you looking on investing in equipment that will last the rest of your life?

Heavy lifters however are probably going to have to look at a fixed dumbbell set – certainly some that cover over 50 kg that the adjustable weights go to.


There are plenty of good options on the market for adjustable dumbbells. If you’re looking for something cheap, the spinlock style provide you with a basic option. Dial-a-weight dumbbells are more expensive but come with the convenience of being able to change weight in seconds.

Among the spinlock sets we reviewed, the Bodypower 30 kg stand out. They’re a little more expensive than their competitors, but they come with 30 kg whereas most other spinlock dumbbells only come with 20 kg. The extra 10 kg greatly increases their versatility.

The Bowflex SelectTech dumbbells stand out as one of the best options among dial-a-weight type because of their great quality and deserved reputation. They offer two different versions; the one we reviewed that ranges from 2 kg to 24 kg and another that runs from 4.5 kg to a max weight of 41 kg.

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Jason Barnham

Jason started lifting weights back in 1990 which sparked his interest in Nutrition. He went back to college in 1993 then started at the University of Surrey in 1994, graduating in Nutrition and Dietetics in 1998.

Having worked in both the NHS and running his own dietetic clinic, he has now settled into the web publishing world.

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