The best weightlifting equipment

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If you’re looking to build strength, it’s better to choose powerlifting equipment like a squat rack. If you’re looking to tone and maintain, then consider a kettlebell or a more portable machine.

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Which weightlifting equipment is best?

Weightlifting has been around for ages, and, depending on who you ask, you’ll receive various answers as to which style of equipment is best. The truth is that the best piece of equipment boils down to your individual goals. 

If you’re looking for the best all-around piece of weightlifting equipment, the REP FITNESS FT3000 Compact Trainer is a top choice. It’s a great piece of equipment that’s small enough to fit even the most compact of living spaces. 

What to know before you buy weightlifting equipment

Goals

So you have your weightlifting gloves, wrist wraps and shakes ready to go. The next step is to find the best weightlifting equipment that suits your needs. 

Take a few minutes to determine your ultimate goals. For example, runners don’t need to purchase or spend a significant amount of time on powerlifting machines. They would benefit more from a compact device with moderate resistance levels. 

On the other hand, powerlifters don’t benefit from equipment that maxes out at 250 pounds. Similarly, if your goal is to be the world’s strongest person, you’ll need other tools like a farmer’s handle, logs and even Atlas stones.

Versatility

The best pieces of weightlifting equipment should allow for more than one exercise. However, to prevent any injuries, you must follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. 

For example, while a bench press is made solely for chest workouts, you can use it for other exercises, like wrist rolls and hip thrusts. If you prefer working out on cable machines, look for one with swivel arms that allow for a full range of motion. 

Budget

Building a home gym presents an opportunity for you to have customized equipment to fit your current needs and goals. Also, if you purchase a versatile weightlifting machine, you save on gym membership and other costs in the long run. If anything, it eliminates any excuse not to exercise.

When looking at weightlifting equipment, you must set a budget. It’s easy to drastically overspend. However, you don’t want to compromise safety for cost by any means. The general rule of thumb is that the more complex and sturdy the equipment is, the more expensive it will be. 

What to look for in quality weightlifting equipment

Durability

When selecting weightlifting equipment, it’s vital that you choose one made from material that’s durable. The last thing you want on a cable machine, for example, is for it to snap suddenly, causing you or someone else injury. 

Safety

Like in most sports, regardless of proper form, injuries can still occur. However, having the proper equipment can help support a safe workout session. For example, powerlifters can benefit from a more secure grip and reduced stress on their joints by using an Olympic barbell instead of a standard one. This equipment features 2-inch rotating sleeves, which reduces the torque caused by the plates. 

Arguably, one could say that weight machines are much safer than using free weights. That’s because these machines are designed to be used with a specific form to reduce the risk of injury.

Warranties

When purchasing weightlifting equipment, consider looking for ones that have a warranty — preferably a lifetime warranty. You’re investing in this equipment and depending on it to last for many years. It’s not worth spending a lot of money on equipment just to replace it six months to a year later due to faulty or broken parts. 

How much you can expect to spend on weightlifting equipment

Depending on the equipment type, you can expect to spend between $50-$6,000 on quality weightlifting equipment. 

Best weightlifting equipment FAQ

Which weightlifting equipment provides the best total body exercise?

A. When considering weightlifting equipment, the piece that works the most muscle groups is the rowing machine. When used correctly, a quality rowing machine activates a total of nine muscle groups in the upper and lower body. Many people fail to reap all the benefits of a rowing machine because they don’t use optimal form, so be sure to learn how to use it properly.

Which weightlifting equipment is the most versatile? 

A. You can’t lug around a squat rack, but a dumbbell can also be limited. Kettlebells, however, provide the tension you need to build and tone muscle with a seemingly endless list of exercises that can keep you engaged. Like a rowing machine, using kettlebells correctly can give you a total body workout. High-quality resistance bands also provide substantial amounts of versatility, and they’re light enough to carry around and get a workout just about anywhere. 

What’s the best weightlifting equipment to buy?

Top weightlifting equipment

REP FITNESS FT3000 Victory Compact Trainer

REP FITNESS FT3000 Victory Compact Trainer

What you need to know: REP FITNESS has created this all-around trainer that’s perfect for smaller spaces. 

What you’ll love: This excellent trainer focuses on providing a variety of cable exercises, offering 20 selectable cable positions. While many home gyms are manufactured with sub-standard protocols, REP FITNESS made this a home gym fit for the best of gyms. Additionally, it comes with a lifetime warranty. 

What you should consider: It’s compact and doesn’t come with a squat rack. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top weightlifting equipment for the money

Gold’s Gym XRS 50

Gold’s Gym XRS 50

What you need to know: Gold’s Gym created this affordable and portable piece of equipment that allows for a number of great lifting exercises. 

What you’ll love: This Gold’s Gym model is perfect for most recreational weightlifters without breaking the bank. It only weighs around 300 pounds, making it one of the more portable home gyms. 

What you should consider: It features a 112 pound weight stack and maxes out at 280 pounds of resistance.  

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

TRX Training Kettlebell

TRX Training Kettlebell

What you need to know: The TRX Training Kettlebell is one of the most versatile of all weightlifting equipment, providing a total body workout. 

What you’ll love: This kettlebell underwent a gravity cast molding process that gives it a flat bottom, ideal shape and optimized durability. As a world-renowned brand, it’s not surprising to find an ergonomic handle that compliments and supports your list of exercises.

What you should consider: Some may have a rougher finish. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

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Christopher Lee writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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