Many people decide to train with weights at home and if you’re reading this article, you’re probably one of those people. Training with weights at home is a great idea because it saves time and helps you work your entire upper body. But, essentially, apart from weights, you’ll also need some sort of bench to perform different types of exercises.
Back in the Arnold days, there weren’t as many gyms and fitness machines available, but now the situation is different. Whether you’re looking for a set of dumbbells, a calf raise machine or the best weight bench there is plenty of great kit now available for home use.
Let’s discuss the different types of weight benches you can find on the market today. Keep reading to learn how do they compare, their pros and cons, and what types of exercises you can do with them.
Our Top Picks at a Glance
- Hardcastle Flat Weight Bench
- Life Fitness Adjustable Bench
- Lions Flat Weight Bench
- HOMCOM Flat Bench
- York Fitness 5 Seat Position Bench Press
- York Fitness 13 in 1 Utility Bench
- Mirafit Heavy Duty 260kg FID Weight Bench
- Mirafit Adjustable Folding Weight Bench with Dip Station
- GYMAX Folding Adjustable Weight Bench
- TNP Folding Weight Bench
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 or Fitness Superstore.
Types of Weight Bench
There are 3 main types of weight benches available out there. The more complex the bench is, the more varied your exercise routine can be. At the same time, advanced benches such as those with weight racks allow you to target multiple muscle groups in your body. This basically gives you the opportunity to work almost your entire body if you have the right weights.
Let’s take a look at the most popular weight benches out there.
Simple Flat Weight Benches
These weight benches are the simplest ones on the market today because they have no additional bells and whistles. They are designed for beginners as well as professional athletes and are suitable for numerous types of exercises.
A flat bench consists of a padded platform on which you sit and 4 strong metallic legs. The entire frame is made from metal and the padded platform is several inches thick, so it will be comfortable for you to use.
These benches are mostly pre-assembled, you just have to attach the legs and tighten them up. The platform is easy to clean and the entire frame can support loads of around 200-250kg or more. Here are a few exercises you can do on a flat weight bench:
- Reverse crunches for your abdominal muscles
- Dumbbell exercises for arms and chest
- Back exercises using a dumbbell
- Dips for your triceps
- Dumbbell rows for your biceps, triceps, and shoulder
You can get very creative with your flat bench press and do a wide variety of exercises for your entire body. Just because this bench has a simple design, it doesn’t mean that its potential is limited.
Adjustable Weight Benches (incline and decline)
The other type of bench you need to know about is the adjustable weight bench. This one can be inclined or declined at different angles, help you target your muscles in different ways.
The design of an adjustable weight bench is also simple. You have 2 padded platforms – one smaller and one larger. You sit on the smaller platform while the larger ones can be inclined or declined to support your back.
You can incline the bench at different angles such as 30 degrees, 45 degrees, 60 degrees or even 75 degrees. This will help you perform a wide variety of exercises safely. At the same time, the platform can also be declined to -15 degrees or – 30 degrees.
Some of you are probably wondering why would you want to decline the platform and use it as a decline bench? You would want to do that to work your abs more efficiently. The decline bench will also help to target your chest muscles from a different angle while doing a dumbbell press exercise. You’re basically emphasizing the lower chest area to help you develop a symmetric and attractive chest.
Some of the exercises you can do with an adjustable weight bench include:
- Seated military press for your triceps and shoulders
- Dumbbell exercises for your arms and shoulders
- Chest exercises for your upper, middle and lower chest
- Crunches for your abs and obliques
- Fly and reverse fly exercises for your chest and back
The adjustable weight bench is ideal for those who have some gym experience and want to target the muscles in different ways for extra definition and muscle tone.
Weight Benches with Racks (Barbell Bench)
The third ones in our list are represented by weight benches with racks.
These are a bit more complex because not only that they can be inclined, but they also come with racks on which you can put barbells on. If you ever went to the gym and did the classic bench press exercise, you probably used a weight bench with racks.
This type of bench comes with a single platform covered with thick padding. It is fixed at one end while the other end can be lowered, depending on your needs. Such a bench also allows you to do incline bench presses for your upper chest.
At the other end of the bench, you have racks which support weights. This machine is ideal for bench presses, but you can also do other exercises. For example, some of these benches are dip stations, meaning that they have 2 handles where you can perform dips for your triceps.
Some of the exercises you can do on a weight bench with racks include:
- Regular and incline presses for your chest
- Dumbbell fly and pull-overs
- Crunches for your abs
- Dips for your triceps and shoulders
A weight bench with racks is more suitable for people who want to work with barbells, not only dumbbells.Many benches can hold weights of up to 200-250kg, so they are designed for people with different levels of experience.
What Do You Need To Look For When Buying A Weight Bench
There are several important aspects to remember when shopping for weight benches.
First of all, ask yourself what types of exercises you intend to do and are you ready for exercising with barbells already? If you’re a novice when it comes to fitness, maybe it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with dumbbell exercises first, before aiming to build mass with a barbell. In this case, you probably need a flat or adjustable bench.
If you’re training with barbells, you might also need a training partner to assist you. This is necessary particularly when doing bench presses with very heavy weights. A training partner will help you avoid injuries and perform the exercise in a safe, controlled manner.
Here are other aspects to take into account
Materials and Supported Load
Obviously, all weight benches come with a metallic frame to support huge weights. Some benches are designed with stainless steel tubing several inches thick. This is great because they can support up to 250-300 kg in total. Obviously, these benches also occupy more space.
Your weight bench will also have a thick platform covered with comfortable padding several inches thick. This padding prevents injuries while you work out and makes you feel more comfortable during your training.
Incline and Decline Bench or Just Incline
Some benches are designed to be inclined to various angles, but they can’t be declined. This is still ok, just that you might not be able to impact those abs properly when doing crunches.
Other weight benches also can be set to decline and they give you a complete body workout if you utilize them at their maximum potential. An incline bench helps you train the lower part of your chest as well.
Although these benches are strong enough to sustain a tall adult, you need to be concerned about safety when buying one. For example, flat benches are usually the strongest ones out there because they have no moving parts. They can safely hold hundreds of kg as long as they are assembled correctly.
On the other hand, adjustable benches designed for home use are slightly more fragile but still good for most people. Because they have a platform which can be moved, they are more prone to damage. As a general rule of thumb, welded benches are more durable than those which are put together with bolts. Make sure that you set them in place correctly when adjusting the platform angle to prevent accidents and injuries.
The same story goes for the weight benches with racks. Make sure that the racks are made from stainless steel and they are capable of holding heavy barbells without problems. Some racks can also be adjusted by height and they need to be fixed in place with stainless steel bolts.
Some weight benches are also designed to be foldable. This means that the platform can be retracted and placed vertically, occupying less space. As a result, you can safely and easily carry the bench with you wherever you go or you can store it somewhere in your house. Still, remember that foldable benches are less durable than regular ones. If you’re a massive bodybuilder weighing more than 100 kg, this is definitely something you need to take into account when it comes to foldable benches.
A Detailed Look at the Best Weight Benches
Now that you know more about weight benches and how to buy one, it’s time to get inspired. The following is a list of 9 weight benches with various features. We try to accommodate the needs of most customers, so keep reading and see which one is more suitable for you.
Flat Weight Benches
This bench comes at a reasonable price and it’s ideal for most people who are looking to exercise and build muscle mass. The bench comes with a steel frame which can hold up to 250kg. The maximum weight of the user should be 130kg or less. The frame also has a white powder coat finish which makes it look attractive.
The bench measures 111cm in length 59cm in width. It can be easily stored upwards when not in use and the thick padding makes your exercise routine very comfortable and enjoyable.
You’ll be happy to find out that the bench comes mostly pre-assembled, so you’ll just have a few bolts to tighten. The legs of the bench also have rubber covers which add more stability while you lift. At the same time, the rubber feet will also prevent scratching your floors.
- Comes mostly pre-assembled
- Can support a lot of weight
- The padding is thick and comfortable
- Doesn’t include tools for assembly
This flat weight bench is durable, can withstand a lot of weight and it doesn’t occupy a lot of space. It’s ideal for a total body workout, provided you have the necessary dumbbells and weights for the job.
We love how this bench feels – it’s neither too soft or too hard, making it perfect to get in the best dumbbell workout possible. Easily adjusts for both chest and shoulder work, you can even use this Life Fitness bench as a support for dumbbell rows.
- Bench is very comfortable to use
- Easily adjusts
- Sits a little low for some users
This is a decent bench for the price point. It allows for both chest and shoulder work, as well as a support for supine work or dumbbell row exercises. The bench isn’t the highest quality available, so it’s probably best suited to novice and intermediate lifters who aren’t sure if they’re ready to invest in something more expensive.
If you are looking for a slightly shorter weight bench, but equally comfortable, we recommend the one from Lions. This flat bench also has a steel frame which can support weights of up to 250 kg. The maximum user weight should be 120 kg and this weight should be evenly distributed across the bench for greater stability.
The steel tubular frame is equipped with rubber feet and it’s held in place using steel bolts. Your weight bench comes mostly pre-assembled, so you don’t have much work to do after you receive the product. This bench also has a thick cushion covering the platform, so your exercise routine is not painful or uncomfortable.
When it comes to dimensions, this bench measures almost 100 cm in length, 51 cm in height and 51 cm in width. It’s relatively compact, yet very durable and easy to store. The weight of the bench is also just 11.4 kg which is impressive for something so strong.
- Compact design, easy to move around and easy to store
- Can hold up to 250kg
- Lightweight at just 11.4kg
- Ideal for a wide variety of exercises
- Doesn’t comes with assembly tools
- The padding on the platform feel look very thick
If you’re short on space and looking for a durable bench, we highly recommend this one from Lions as it is only 100 cm long. As long as you have a good set of dumbbells or a weight rack, this flat bench will help you build some serious muscle mass.
The third product in our list of flat benches comes from Homcom. This is another great weight bench with a heavy-duty steel frame. The bench is capable of withstanding up to 250kg with a total user weight of around 120-130kg. This is usually enough for most people, whether you’re a professional bodybuilder or you just started with weight lifting.
On top of the steel frame sits a comfy platform made from 5 cm of foam padding. This comfortable cushion prevents injuries while working out and gives you a sensation of stability. The padding can also be cleaned easily while the orange accent colour will make it stand out in your home gym.
As for dimensions, this bench is not very large, but not very small either. Its total length is 110 cm and its height is 40 cm. It’s slightly lower than other benches, so you can even use it for plyometric exercises if you want. The total weight of the bench is nearly 13.5 kg, so you can easily move it from place to place when needed.
- Attractive design
- Can support a lot of weight
- 5cm padded cushion is very comfortable when working out
- Might be a little difficult to assemble it
This bench comes with everything you need for a total body workout. You can do a variety of exercises, it can hold a great amount of weight and it also comes at an affordable price, so why wouldn’t you get one?
Adjustable Weight Benches
Now it’s time to focus on adjustable weight benches and we begin with a great model from York. This bench is compact and made from stainless steel. It’s capable of supporting loads of up to 200kg which is impressive. It also has a clever design which allows you to choose from 5 different inclination angles – from 0 to 90 degrees.
The inclination adjustment can be done in seconds by moving the platform at the desired angle. A steel lever holds the back support in place, so you can safely perform seated military presses or other exercises with dumbbells.
Speaking of dumbbells, the base of the bench also has small racks for storing smaller weights. We believe this is a great little detail which helps you save space when the bench is not used.
Although this is just an incline bench and not a decline one (the platform cannot be lowered below horizontal), you’ll be able to do a plethora of exercises with it. The thick padding on the backrest also makes your workout routine more comfortable. This weight bench also comes with rubber feet which prevents slipping when exercising.
- Durable, compact and easy to use
- Comes with small racks for your light dumbbells
- Thick padding on the backrest, you’ll feel very comfortable exercising
- Made from heavy-duty tubular steel
- There were some minor quality issues reported by one or two users
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty adjustable weight bench which can be easily moved and inclined then this one might be suitable for you. It features a sold frame and although it doesn’t hold more than 200kg, the bench is good enough for most home gym owners.
The York brand makes a multitude of high-quality weight benches and we want to review another one from this brand. This utility bench is fully adjustable and it can be set up in 13 different positions, depending on your needs. For example, you can choose from 4 incline positions, 3 decline positions, 4 hyper-extension positions, one biceps curl position, and one flat position.
You can achieve all these angles and positions thanks to its clever design. The bench is made from stainless steel, it has 2 adjustable platforms and one padded ankle support. By adjusting these platforms, you can achieve up to 13 different positions for your exercise routine. For example, the incline positions are at 15 percent, 25 percent, 45 percent, and 70 percent. This will help you target those chest muscles at various angles when performing dumbbell presses.
Despite being so flexible, the bench also manages to withstand up to 180kg. The maximum user weight is 100 kg and the other 80kg are reserved for weights. When folded flat this bench is only 19cm high. You can easily store it vertically somewhere in your house when not in use.
Lastly, the bench is covered with thick padding on both platforms and the ankle support, so you won’t feel the metallic frame bumping into your spine while working out. The overall weight of the bench is around 24 kg and it comes with rubber feet to protect your floors.
- It can be adjusted in so many ways, helping you work your entire body with ease
- Can be folded for easy storage
- Comes with deep cushion upholstery on all surfaces for maximum comfort
- Helps you work your entire body
- Doesn’t support more than 180kg
- Quite heavy at 24kg, but it’s understandable given its complexity
This adjustable weight bench will impress you with its features and the multitude of positions you can use. Although it doesn’t support more than 180kg, it’s ideal for working your legs, arms, torso, chest, and back with dumbbells of different sizes. Go for it if you’re looking for a super-customizable piece of fitness equipment!
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty bench which can hold plenty of weight but can also be adjusted at different angles then check this one out. It is capable of sustaining up to 260kg of weight and it has 6 different adjustable angles for the backrest. The bench can be inclined and declined with little to no effort, allowing you to perform a wide variety of exercises.
At the same time, this bench also has inclination settings for the seat. You can lift it or lower it depending on your needs, making it more comfortable for you to perform dumbbell presses, for example. There is a lever under the seat which allows you to easily control the angle of the bench.
When it comes to materials, this product is made from heavy-duty stainless steel. It is painted in black and held together with thick steel bolts. The bench comes mostly pre-assembled, you just have to put together the components. This task shouldn’t take more than half an hour, so it’s easy to assemble.
As for the backrest and seat, they are covered with a thick cushion measuring up to 5 cm which makes it very comfortable.
This adjustable bench is designed to be very durable, so it’s understandable why it weighs around 22.2 kg. Still, it’s easy to move because it features castor wheels on one end. You just lift it up at the other end and drag it into position whenever you want. The dimensions of this product are also modest. It measures around 125cm in length and 55cm in width, so it will not occupy a lot of space in your home gym.
- Semi-pro bench, it can sustain a great deal of weight
- Multiple incline and decline positions to choose from
- The caster wheels make transportation very easy
- Beautiful, attractive design and easy to use
- Comes with bolts, but without tools for assembly
If you have some gym experience and you’re looking to completely transform your body this summer, this adjustable bench is probably for you. It’s an investment in your health and it will definitely help you achieve your goals in the upcoming years, thanks to its durability and huge maximum load capacity.
Weight Benches with Racks
Now it’s time to focus on adjustable benches which also come with weight racks. These are special types of benches designed for athletes looking to build muscle mass by using barbells, not only dumbbells.
For example, this adjustable bench from Mirafit could be a great addition to your home gym. It features a steel frame and can withstand a great deal of weight. One end of the bench is fixed in place while the other end can be lowered to take it from flat to an incline. This will help you perform incline bench press exercises for your upper chest.
The bench also features soft cushioning which is several centimeters thick, so each exercise will feel very comfortable.
When it comes to the rack, this one is mounted at the fixed end of the bench. It features 5 height positions and each rack is fixed in place with a steel bolt. You pull that bold out, lift or lower the rack and put the bolt back. Adjusting the height of the rack is very useful because it helps you obtain a comfortable hand grip on the barbell, depending on the length of your arms.
Another advantage provided by this weight bench consists of the dip handles. These allow you to perform dips to work your triceps. There’s no lever to adjust or anything, you just grab the handles and get to work, so it’s a nice addition to your home gym.
When it comes to weight and dimensions, this bench measures about 125 cm long. The racks which hold the barbell can be lifted or lowered from 79 cm to 99 cm in relation to the floor. The bench itself sits just 41 cm above the floor, so you can use it for a wide variety of leg exercises and even plyometrics.
You might be happy to find out that you can also fold this bench when necessary. You just lift the backrest platform vertically and store the bench wherever you want. When the bench is folded, it has a height of 131 cm and measures less than half a meter in width and depth, so it doesn’t occupy a lot of space. Keep in mind that the weights are not included, so you’ll have to get those by yourself.
- Heavy-duty bench, ideal for a wide variety of exercises
- 5 height positions for the weight racks, very useful if many people use the bench
- Includes a dip station
- Not extremely heavy, weighs less than 20kg
- Comes with bolts, but without tools for assembly
If you’re really into bodybuilding and don’t want to go to the gym then this bench might be suitable for you.
It’s ideal for people who want to target their upper body muscles from various angles and perform different types of exercises such as dips, chest presses, dumbbell pulls, etc. On top of that, you can also work your ab muscles as it includes a foot strap for resistance.
If you’re looking for a more compact and lightweight adjustable bench then we recommend this model from Gymax. This is a multipurpose bench weighing just 15kg and measuring 110cm in length. It’s ideal for people who don’t have a lot of space at their disposal, but still want to work their entire body in a safe and comfortable way.
The bench features a steel frame capable of holding users weighing up to 160kg. On top of that, the racks can also be loaded with barbells weighing up to 140kg. This is usually enough for most people. This bench also comes with a padded platform covered with a few centimeters of foam cushioning. It will make your workout routine more comfortable and the padded platform can also be cleaned easily.
In its standard position, the platform creates a flat bench. However, you can also lower the platform at one end to perform incline bench presses. The racks are installed at the fixed end of the platform and they have 5 different positions to choose from. Whether you have short or long arms it can accommodate you.
This model is also equipped with a dip station, so just grab the handles and work those shoulders and triceps. These handles are padded as well for extra comfort and to prevent slipping. Speaking of slipping, the bench itself has rubber feet, so will remain stable while you train.
Lastly, this adjustable bench can also be folded for easy storage. You just lift the platform upwards and move the bench out of the way.
- Compact and lightweight, ideal for small spaces
- Can sustain up to 300kg of weight
- Adjustable weight racks, ideal for family use
- Can be folded
This weight bench is ideal for people who have limited space to work with. It holds a lot of weight, it’s foldable, adjustable and comfortable to use, so for the price paid, there’s really not much else to ask for.
The last one in our list comes from TNP and it’s a weight bench specially designed for those who are taking their first steps into bodybuilding. The bench is made from tubular steel measuring several centimeters in thickness.
It can hold people up to 100 kg in weight, so if you’re heavier than that, you might want to look for a different bench.
At the same time, the weight racks are also capable of holding a lot of weight and they are height adjustable, so you can find the perfect setup for you. By just pulling a steel bolt and sliding the racks, you can make the barbell come closer or further away from your head when doing bench presses.
You can also adjust the padded platform to fit your needs. For example, you can leave the bench flat for regular exercises, decline it to target your lower chest muscles and then flip it vertically for easy storage. Being a foldable bench it won’t take up much room so is ideal for those with storage problems.
You might also be happy to find out that the legs of the bench feature rubber covers which protect your floors and keep the bench stable. On top of working your upper body, you can also use the included foot strap to add resistance when working your abdominal muscles.
This model also comes with handles for doing dips, so don’t hesitate to try them if you want those triceps to really pop out!
- Comes with handles for doing dips
- Height adjustable weight rack
- Comes with foot strap for abdominal exercises
- Users heavier than 100kg can’t use it
This weight bench is designed to be used by those of you who don’t have a lot of space at their disposal but still want a high-quality bench to work out. It comes with adjustable weight racks, it’s comfortable to use and folds for easy storage, so it ticks all the right boxes.
You literally have no excuses when it comes to working out. There are various types of benches to choose from and multiple exercises to try, so all that you have to do now is to come up with a budget and pick your favourite weight bench!