Selecting dumbbells is an important aspect of your workout. Too light and your workout won’t be challenging, but too heavy and you risk injury and won’t be able to complete your workout. So, how do you find the perfect weight to use? To find which size dumbbells you should use, you’ll need to consider the types of exercises you’ll be doing with the weights and your current weight lifting ability.
Before purchasing dumbbells, there are a few basic ideas you should keep in mind. Dumbbells come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and materials. A single set of weights won’t be too expensive, but many people want to purchase multiple dumbbells or even adjustable dumbbells. We’ve got a great blog on the various types of dumbbells and how to select the right ones for your home gym here. However, you should keep in mind that it’s important to:
Dumbbells are not a one size fits all— meaning that not every set of dumbbells will work for each exercise. For example, you can’t do a bicep curl with the same weight you would use for a deadlift. It’s important to always consider safety first since dumbbell exercises are more unstable than barbells and weight training machines. A good rule of thumb for choosing a dumbbell weight is choosing a weight that is 20% less than what you workout with when using a barbell or weight training machine. As you get more comfortable using dumbbells, you can gradually increase the weight.
If you don’t have a pre-existing benchmark weight from using a barbell or machine exercises, there are some general dumbbell weights that work well for most people. Generally, these weights are ideal for 10 to 15 reps for most exercises.
A good indication of whether the weight you used was appropriate, is to evaluate how you felt at the end of your set. Ideally, you should feel fatigued but not so tired that your form breaks down.
If you aren’t able to complete all of your reps with good form, consider a lower weight. Conversely, if you can easily perform 2-3 more reps while maintaining good form, try heavier weights.
Your training goals are the main deciding factor when it comes to what size dumbbells to use, especially if you don’t want to buy several pairs. It’s important that you consider what you want to achieve, for example, if you’re lifting for muscle strength and size you’ll want to get heavier dumbbells. If you’re training for muscle endurance or tone, lighter dumbbells are ideal.
While standard dumbbell sets are the cheapest option, adjustable dumbbells may be more practical and more cost-efficient, especially if you plan to do a variety of weight training exercises. Whatever your preference, our Gym Consultants can assist you in finding the right dumbbells for your home gym. Contact us today!