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Best Home Gym Equipment Reviews For Men Looking To Build Muscle

Want the gains of lifting weights in the comfort of your own home?

Obviously you need a home gym.

But that’s about the only thing that’s obvious when it comes to this topic.

There’s a lot to consider, and many people have differing views.

So, to find the best option for you (it is probably NOT what you originally envisioned), keep on reading, and check out our reviews below.

Rating The Top Home Gym Equipment

The Controversy

When you typed in “home gym”, was something like the Bowflex the first thing that came to mind?

It certainly is for most people.

But the other thing that comes to mind is a power (or squat) rack, and some free weights.

And so the question becomes, well, which one of those options should you consider getting?

Of course if you came into this with a preconceived notion of a Bowflex style machine, that’s perfectly fine, but since we’re all about getting the most bang for our buck, and maximizing our time in the gym, we’re going to have a little talk.

Now, please hear me out, don’t leave discouraged. We’ll cover everything you want to know here to make it easy, feasible, and effective.

TL;DR (too long, didn’t read): We recommend outfitting your home gym with a power rack, barbell, bench, and weights, NOT a resistance machine. This study shows that free weights are up to TWICE as effective in gaining strength and balance.

Read on to find out exactly what you should get to maximize your gains and and make the most progress with the least effort.

What Are The Benefits Of A Home Gym System?

home gym dumbbellObviously the biggest benefit is that you can work out at home whenever you want.

If you work out in the early morning or late night when your local gym is closed, this is a perfect substitute.

If you absolutely HATE the thought of going to the gym (it’s really not that bad, but we totally get it), this is a great option.

If you have literally no time to commute to the gym and need to bang out a quick workout, this is for you.

You can of course make your home gym as intricate or as basic as your heart desires.

If you’re just doing it because it might be a bit more convenient than going to the gym, but you’re worried about costs, I’d suggest you do the math and figure out the difference in cost between building your own home gym vs. buying a gym membership, and then decide if the added up front cost is worth not having to actually go to the gym.

For example, if you spend, let’s say, $1000 building a nice home gym, but your local gym charges $50/month, you’re basically spending almost 2 years worth of membership fees up front.

You should be really sure that you’ll be using this for 2 years or more, that you’ll have all the pieces you would if you went to the gym, and if the up front expense is worth it just so you don’t have to commute to the local gym.

In many cases, you’ll find that just buying a gym membership is a cheaper and more convenient option.

But if you love the privacy of your own home to absolutely give it your all (grunt, sweat, lie down after a muscle crushing workout), or you’re embarrassed because you’re first starting out or aren’t happy with your body (honestly, this shouldn’t stop you from going to the gym, because you’re doing something to better yourself, but we get that many people feel this way), then building a home gym can be a life saver.

It’s also great not to have to wait in line or miss a part of your workout completely because you just don’t have time to wait for the 3 dudes chatting around the squat rack to finish their damn sets. Having a home gym can allow you to get a workout done in like 30 or 45 minutes, including ZERO commute time, so saving time and staying at a certain high tempo is a huge advantage.

Of course if you’re really serious about this, and we hope you are, after a couple of years, you’ll be saving money on gym memberships and you won’t have to buy or upgrade your equipment as often as gyms do, since your stuff won’t see the same wear and tear, because it’s usually just you using it.

If you’re salivating at the idea of not commuting, working out quickly, and not being around other people, you’ll want to read below to find out our top recommendation for building your own gym.

Free Weights Vs. Machines

Ah, we finally reach the big debate.

You may have come into this thinking that the best option was to get the 748-exercise-in-one Bowflex or similar machine.

The commercials always showed people who are totally jacked and they hardly look like they’ve broken a sweat!

Unfortunately, this is just part of the bigger reason why the fitness industry is considered so shady, because it’s almost all dominated by marketing, rather than real science, which you’d assume would play SOME role.

Most people want to lose weight, gain muscle, get in shape, and not have to do a whole lot in order to achieve their goals.

That’s a totally reasonable mindset, but it’s not realistic when it’s not based on doing things that actually work.

We’re big proponents of the 80/20 rule, whereby you earn 80% of your results from only 20% of the things you do (getting the most results out of the least effort). That leads us to focus on those 20% of the things and not waste our time on the other 80% that only gets us limited returns.

So, we’re all about keeping things simple, not over-complicating things, not taking millions of different supplements, and not believing in every new workout fad.

The hard part is, they make the machines look so cool, and like you’ll get the dream body you’ve always wanted without doing much actual work. It’s tough, when there are so many differing opinions in the fitness industry, to know who to trust and who is selling you a pipe dream.

Almost every single person who spends at least some time working out and watching what they eat will tell you that free weights are by far the preferred option to achieving your goals.

And if you want the max results with the least effort, we’re big proponents of sticking with a few whole-body compound exercises like the squat, bench press, and deadlift.

If you eat well and focus on strength, you will get so much closer to your goals than if you count your food in daily “points” and do silly exercises on the latest exercise machine.

Studies showing that free weights are better than machine, or fixed weights, over and over again.

In this study, free weights increased strength 115% and balance 245%. Fixed weight workouts only increased strength 57% and balance 49%. That’s literally double the strength and 5x the balance.

Those are pretty significant findings.

These studies show that you’ll see greater anterior and medial deltoid activation using free weights for a bench press (rather than fixed weights/machines), meaning your overall upper body development is much greater if you’re using free weights.

Think about it, your body has to stabilize the weight on the barbell. So, even if you’re using your chest muscles to push the weight up, the rest of your body, your shoulders in the case of this study, are doing some work to keep you from dropping the weight.

Because of this, muscles are being utilized with free weights that are not being utilized with machines, which will lead to great strength and stability.

This study shows a 43% higher activity in all muscles in the free squat vs smith machine squat, and free squats are better for strengthening “plantar flexors, knee flexors, and knee extensors”.

More on the squat front, this study tells us that squats are better than leg presses for delivering greater total work, increasing testosterone, increasing growth hormone, and therefore “free weight exercises seem to induce greater hormonal responses to resistance exercise than machine weight exercises using similar lower-body multijoint movements and primary movers.”

Oh yeah, more squat studies. Squatting is more beneficial to increasing not only the amount of work you can do, but your squat jump and countermovement jump. Squatting is straight up more effective than leg press for increasing jump performance.

There are a few more studies that show that specific muscle activation differences were not statistically significant when comparing free weights to machine exercises, but you will not find a plethora of studies showing that machines are better than free weights.

The research shows that free weights are better in a variety of ways, and that at best, a few machine exercises may be fairly similar to free weights.

bowflex laundryDon’t be one of the many who buys a “home gym” machine, only to use it as a place to dump your laundry, and end up selling it for half of what you paid for it after a year.

While machines have worked for some people (we find that for about every 15 people saying they have made good progress with free weights, 1 would chime in to say they enjoyed using a machine), it seems very clear that you will make greater progress in the same amount of time using free weights.

We highly recommend changing your mindset a bit, and going with a basic home gym that is suitable for using free weights.

We also highly recommend finding a basic exercise program that utilizes compound movements and free weights. We like Stronglifts 5×5 because it’s simple, delivers real strength gains, has a ton of information and help available, has a very useful app, and basically takes out any thinking that might trip you up when it comes to actually completing your workout.

Obviously you’re free to use whatever program you want, but my motivation right now is helping anyone who came into this looking for a Bowflex style machine, by showing them that there are simple, impactful programs that they can follow, which will make their workouts even easier than if they tried to make one up using a machine.

Reviewing The Best Equipment For Your Home Gym

Alright, so rather than tell you what version of the Bowflex is best, we’ll walk you through what pieces to buy, and give you our recommendations.

The Best Squat / Power Rack

The foundational piece of your gym should be a good squat rack or cage, sometimes referred to as a power rack.

A good cage is multifunctional, allowing you to safely perform multiple exercises and store your barbell/weights.

You’ll be able to set stops at certain heights to make sure that as long as you’re doing your exercise within the confines of the cage, you will not be stuck or injured in case you go to failure and can’t get back up.

For example, if you’re squatting, you can set the bars to a position just below your full descent position. If you can’t finish your rep, the bar and weight will simply fall onto the bars, instead of rolling off your back and pulling you back with them or smashing into the floor.

Similarly, they’re very helpful for bench press without a spotter.

Obviously it’d be ideal if you had a spotter, but this is a home gym we’re talking about, you’re probably doing this by yourself, right?

Set the bars at about the bottom of your lift (when the bar is touching your chest), and in case you can’t finish a rep, the barbell will be caught by the bars on the cage, instead of crushing your chest or neck with it’s full weight.

Even if you’re slightly pinned, it’s much safer than having the full force against you and being unable to get up or call for help.

Because it plays such a vital part in keeping you safe (and because you’ll be racking the weights on the cage), it’s important that you get a sturdy one made of solid material that will not warp or wobble on you when you’re using it.

We strongly discourage buying the cheapest option here, as your safety could depend on its structural integrity.

The 810XLT by Fitness Reality is our favorite because it’s very strong and sturdy, it’s well priced, and it’s got a couple nice extras, which we’ll get to in a second.

It’s rated to 800 pounds, the frame is 2×2 inch steel, and it not only includes safety bars but also two stabilizer bars, which will keep it rigid and structurally sound.

We like that it includes a pull up bar. I go back and forth between whether I actually like the “multi-grip” bars, or whether it’s better to just have a straight bar, but the multi-grip bar here gives you a bunch of different ways to pull yourself up.

Again, the frame strength is a big plus on this because if you’re going to be doing pull ups, you do not want it swaying or tipping. So far we haven’t encountered any problems, even when form isn’t perfect (i.e., when we’re swinging like crazy trying to get that one last rep).

Also cool is the fact that you can get it with or without a bench. I think it’s super convenient to just get this bench, as it’s adjustable and also rated to 800 pounds.

Great for bench press, obviously, but also good for overhead press, since you may workout in a space that doesn’t have a ceiling high enough to accommodate a full press while standing.

One problem we have with it is that the rods where you rack the weight are just that, rods. We’d prefer if they were J hooks.

The rods have a stopper on the end of them, so it’s not like it’s unsafe, it’s just that the added peace of mind the J hooks provide is worth it, and typically what you’ll find in a gym anyway, which gives a bit more comfort.

Dimensions: 50.5 L x 46.5 W x 83.5 H inches (7 feet tall)

Weight: 133.5 pounds

We think this is the best overall rack, and the best value for your money, too. Get it with the bench and you’ll be good to go.

If you’re working out in your basement and have a very short ceiling, you can always opt for the short TDS squat cage, which is 72.5 inches tall. It can work for most of your exercise needs, even if you’re 6’3 or 6’4. Doesn’t seem to be as high quality as the one we recommend above, but you don’t have a lot of options for a short rack.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

The Best Floor Protector/Padding For Your Home Gym

You should get something to protect the floor wherever you’re going to be doing your lifting.

Interlocking foam tiles are the most popular option, as they allow you to create just the right sized space.

ProSource has the most popular ones out there, and they’ll give you up to 24 square feet of coverage. You get 6x 2×2 foot squares, it’s half-inch thick foam, and it’s water resistant.

They’re pretty cheap, include “border” pieces to make it look good, and are textured and non-skid.

Obviously you could get a few packs of these and cover a pretty big space.

The goal here is to provide some comfortable, anti-slip surface and protect the floor underneath of the power rack and the weights.

You may want to get some extras to put under the weights if you’re doing deadlifts, in case you’re dropping/bouncing the weights on the floor at the bottom of your rep.

Don’t overthink this one, just get something to protect your floors!

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

The Best Barbell

Alright so if you’re following a basic compound movement plan like Stronglifts, most if not all of your exercises will require a barbell.

Therefore, you should make sure it’s a good one!

Make sure you’re getting a 45 pound, 7-foot bar that won’t bend and break with some weight on it.

There are cheap bars out there, but like we said with the squat rack, absolutely do not take the risk.

You don’t have to buy the most expensive thing out there, but just don’t try to cheap out when an equipment failure could lead to an injury or at the very least, damaged property.

We’ve heard of guys using crappy bars that break mid-rep and it’s only because of luck that they weren’t injured.

The best bang for your buck, at least that we’ve found, is the Body Solid 7 foot barbell. It’s got a 600 pound capacity, which should be PLENTY for most guys at home, and is actually constructed well.

The chrome finish makes the most sense and is really well priced, but of course you could choose the more expensive black version because it looks so damn cool…

The grip is 30mm in diameter, and it includes knurling on the grips and in the middle of the bar. The bar is “olympic” sized, which means weights with a 2-inch diameter hole in the center will fit perfectly – in other words, it’s got a 2-inch sleeve.

The sleeves are smooth, and the bar doesn’t come with collars to keep the weights in place, though if you’re alone you may actually be safer not using them, in case you need to tilt the bar to get it off of you, which would slide one side of the weights off, allowing you to get up. Shouldn’t a be concern if you’ve got a properly set up squat cage, but better to be safe than sorry.

There are way more expensive bars out there, and a few for less money, but this one at least is a solid bar, it won’t bend on you, and it’s basically the standard that you’d find in most gyms.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

The Best Free Weights

You’ll want to make sure you pick some weights that are actually as heavy as they say they are, and that are manufactured with some skill.

There are WAY too many companies out there that sell complete rubbish. Plates with holes that are full of burrs and not round so they don’t fit on the barbell, 10% variances against the stated weight, potentially toxic smells in the rubber coating…it seems that high-quality is the exception, not the rule, when it comes to plates.

However, we have found some decent ones that won’t break the bank, that are actually well made and pretty good for a home gym.

It’s probably easiest to order a full set, rather than picking and choosing and hoping that you get everything you wanted.

Sticking with Body Solid, the same guys we recommend for the barbell, we’re going to recommend their set of black rubber grip weight plates.

You can choose from 255 lbs, 355 lbs, or 455 lbs, each one of which has a slightly different configuration. If you never lift more than 300 pounds (remember your bar will weigh 45 pounds), get the 255 pound set.

It’s super convenient to get a set that are all the same, the rubber is nice for grip so you don’t drop them (and it’s slightly easier when they hit the floor), and they’re actually really high quality. Plus, the price is right when it comes to getting a full set with grip.

One thing we noticed about pretty much any weight set that had rubber grip around them was that they smell, sometimes pretty bad.

These weren’t as bad as some of the cheaper brands, which can literally smell toxic, but the manufacturer even recommends you wash them in lemon Pine-Sol to get rid of the smell.

Some guys are even talking about having had these for 2 or 3 years, with no problems, which is really nice to hear, since you might worry about the rubber wearing off or tearing. No such thing, it seems!

Overall, highly recommended to just get a set, and the Body Solid brand is a high quality, reasonably priced one.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

The Best Free Weight Storage Rack

So technically you could stack these on the floor or keep them on your barbell, but if you like to keep things neat and tidy, it’s a good idea to add a plate rack.

They’re not very expensive, and keep things organized, and help you move quicker, because you can change weights on the barbell more quickly taking them from the rack, rather than picking them up off the floor and finding the right ones.

Keeping in line with our other recommendations, we’re going to go with the Body Solid plate storage rack, mostly because it’s good quality, decently priced, and will absolutely fit the Body Solid weights we recommend.

We didn’t expect to sound like a Body Solid advertisement when we started doing this research, but turns out it’s high quality stuff and is the best bang for your buck, which is what we’re all about.

This is good because unlike some other, cheaper stands, it’s got 6 pegs to stick weights on, and each has enough room to hold larger weights. It’s also got a couple of holes in the bottom that will allow you to stack olympic barbells when not in use.

They’re basically tubes that stick straight up from the bottom of the stand, and you just insert your barbells into the tube, which holds them upright.

Mostly good for gyms if they’ve got multiple barbells, but may be useful for home use if you’ve got an EZ Bar or something.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

Other Stuff (Best Pull Up Bar And Dip Station)

So that’s about all you REALLY need, but there’s a couple other things to consider, depending on your program and your needs.

First up, which should be taken care of already, is a pull up bar. Hopefully your power rack has a pull up bar attached.

If not, you can always get a doorframe pull up bar, which is pretty cool and super convenient to have around the house.

Second, body weight (or weighted, eventually) dips are an amazing exercise for the upper body. There are some really cool dip stations you can get for your house these days that don’t actually take up a lot of room. I’d highly suggest you get one, otherwise you’ll be risking using the backs of two chairs (not that safe), or finding a piece of playground equipment to do dips (not that convenient).

This dip station looks small and flimsy but is actually really cool and will hold you with no problems. Even better, it can be disassembled pretty easily (couple of minutes) and folded away to give you more space.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

Again, mostly a luxury, but if you want to add a few extra exercises to your routine, a set of adjustable dumbbells can be a huge space saver if you’ve got a home gym. They basically act as a whole range of dumbbells in one set, and they’re pretty easy to adjust.

They can even be used in place of things like the bench press or shoulder press, if you prefer the greater range of motion offered by dumbbells.

Check out our recommendations on our review guide here.

So, though you may have come looking for the latest “get-ripped-quick” scheme, we hope you’ve now decided to use free weights and build a proper gym that will get you the most bang for your buck, and get you the best results possible.

The setup we’ve laid out above will serve you well from beginner all the way to advanced lifter (just add weight!), so it’s a case of making the up front investment once and then reaping the benefits for years to come.

Reviews Of The Best Adjustable Dumbbell Weight Sets For Building Muscle

Dumbbells are not just for getting impressive guns. Dom from BroScience might have you thinking otherwise but let me tell you that dumbbells have more than one use. Used properly, these weapons of choice can be an important tool in your fitness and health regime.

You might be thinking, “I don’t need dumbbells, I can lift rocks, curl barbells, and do handstands pushups”. There’s no denying that you can perform most workouts without the humble dumbbell. I admit that they aren’t like, totally, 100% absolutely essential pieces of equipment for beginners.

But if you’ll bare with me, I’ll show you why they can be worth it, all the same. Specifically, we’ll be talking about the ultra convenient variable weight adjustable dumbbell sets out there.

Ratings Of The Top 5 Adjustable Dumbbell Sets

Why Dumbbells Rock

Some things in your fitness life are just easier with a dumbbell. Take the following examples:

  1. Dumbbells allow you to do curls, farmer’s walks, shoulder presses, triceps extensions, and lateral raises with the same piece of equipment. This gives them the edge over most other pieces of gym equipment. And that’s not an exhaustive list of exercises. Dumbbells are versatile but we’ll get into that a bit later.
  2. Full body exercises are the mainstay of any exercise regime but there is definitely a place for isolation exercises. Hitting muscles that are imbalanced (compared to their pair) or weak is easy with dumbbells.
    Try doing single arm overhead presses with a barbell or any kind of machine. It’s not the same right? Dumbbells have the edge when it comes to isolation exercises.
  3. Dumbbells allow you to perform exercises that incorporate balance and agility in interesting ways. Single leg deadlifts with dumbbells, and walking lunges while carrying a dumbbell are just two examples.
  4. They take up a fraction of the space of barbells and plates. I’m not saying you can replace a squat rack with dumbbells. But give overhead squatting with a pair of dumbbells a try and you’ll understand why this piece of equipment really hits the muscle-spot.

Exercises Using Dumbbells You Haven’t Seen Before

Leaning Lateral Raises

Try this exercise to hit the deltoids from an angle you probably haven’t worked on in a while. It’s a simple variation on the standard lateral raise.

Hold a squat rack support with one hand. In the other hand hold a fairly light dumbbell. Keep your feet close to the support and lean away from the squat rack while holding on with your hand. Now that you’re body is at an angle you can perform single side lateral raises at a whole new angle.

I suggested lighter weights because this isn’t as easy as it sounds. Unless you’re built like an Olympic gymnast, your deltoids won’t be capable of very heavy reps at this angle.

This small change makes the exercise even more challenging. It won’t impress the ladies but it will make a huge difference in the long run. Leave the ego at home, and work those smaller muscles.

Racked Dumbbell Goblet Squat

It’s a bit of a mouthful but this exercise is a very effective way to improve posture while beefing up your wheels. The Goblet Squat works the quads, stabilizers, and arms. Your lungs will also cry out if you go hard so it’s a great exercise to get some strength and conditioning at the same time.

Goblet squats are typically performed with kettle bells but dumbbells are versatile and can be used for almost any exercise that requires kettle bells. We’re all about maximising our spending power and we believe that one set of quality dumbbells is all you need.

Hold a dumbbell at your chest with the plates at one end parallel to the base of your neck. The dumbbell will look like a capital I from the front. Hold the handle just under the top plate and keep the dumbbell close to the body.

Tighten your core and squat down, keeping the dumbbell in tight and your chest up. Maintain a straight-ahead gaze. This movement resembles a front squat as your arms are raised in front to support the weight.

Oh, and don’t forget: Repeat and feel the burn!

Other, Standard Exercises

Standard exercises that you can do with dumbbells include:

Dumbbell Press

Standing or sitting with the weights at just above shoulder height, press until your arms are completely extended over your head. The dumbbell press is very like an inverted handstand press, but is easier for beginners and also allows for more loading of weight.

Bicep Curl

Probably the best-known use for dumbbells is the bicep curl. Worshipped by gym rats, bodybuilders, and poseurs everywhere, the dumbbell bicep curl is as reviled as it is loved.

Performed properly, the dumbbell bicep curl can be a mass-building and posture-correcting exercise. Try leaning slightly forward from the hips with a straight back to vary the angle. Pull in the stomach and maintain a straight posture. This is great for building core strength and control of the body. Use the free movement of the bells to your advantage.

Triceps Press

With both arms hold a single heavy dumbbell behind your head with the upper arms pointed toward the ceiling, Press out the dumbbell by straightening your arms until the dumbbell is directly over your head. Feel the triceps burning and your muscles growing!

Dumbbell Lunge

A fantastic exercise for working the glutes, quads, abs, and come to think of it, pretty much every other muscle.
Hold a dumbbell in each hand by your side and take a step forward from the standing position. Lunge down until your front leg is bent at 90 degrees and your back knee almost touches the ground. Press through the floor with your front foot and push yourself back to a standing position. Repeat with the other leg.

For a variation try walking continuously one leg after another. This is a tough exercise so keep the weight light until you get used to it. Using dumbbells for this exercise is safer than using a barbell because if you lose your balance you won’t have to deal with a full-length barbell flying across the room.

The Best Dumbbells A Man Can Buy

Owning a set of ‘bells is like owning a dog. They won’t let you down, don’t take up much space, require little maintenance apart from some exercise every now and again, and they make you look good. Man’s second-best friend.

Invest in some dumbbells, learn how to use them properly, and watch your physique transform from zero to hero.

“But there are lots of different products available and I’m afraid of buying a bad one”, I hear you cry.

Fear not! We’ve done the heavy lifting for you. This is the list of products that made our final list.

We know you’re short on time and you don’t want the director’s cut version. You want the streamlined list of essential dumbbells for the upwardly mobile man. We aim to please so we’ve come up with a list of the top 5 adjustable dumbbells available in 2017. We’re fans of adjustable dumbbells because they give you a range of weights without the extra cost. Here are our favorites.

But first, some thing to watch out for:

  • Some dumbbells are listed as total max weight, not the max weight of each of the pair. Make sure you are aware that 100lbs max weight could mean two 50lbs dumbbells.
  • Some products are better suited to heavy lifting and others to circuit training. Be clear about what you plan to use them for.

The Best Adjustable Dumbbell Sets Of 2018

#1. Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells (EDITOR’S CHOICE)

Probably the best looking set of dumbbells around. But don’t let looks fool you. These ‘bells are not shallow and don’t lack anything in the quality department.

A standout feature of this set is the ease of adjustment. The Bowflex uses a neat little system whereby you select the desired weight on each end of the dumbbell using a selector dial. Turn the dial to the desired weight and pull the dumbbell off the case. That’s it. No fiddling with clips or collars.

This ability to quickly change weight great for workouts that involve progressions or drop sets. Let’s take the ‘drop set’ example. Drop setting involves performing a set of reps at a particular weight and then, without resting, reducing weight slightly and performing the repetitions again. This continues until you can’t perform any more reps. Most people find that they can’t perform repetitions even at very light weights after exhausting the muscles through the previous sets. The Bowflex allows you to quickly change the weight of the dumbbells so you get the maximum response.

To store the Bowflex you simply place it back into the tray where you adjust the weights. It won’t move from there and is protected from knocks by the hard plastic casing.

What we liked:

  • Increments of 2.5lbs allow for pretty granular adjustments.
  • Easy to adjust.
  • Ability to select different weights for each end of the same dumbbell.

What we didn’t like:

  • Dropping these dumbbells will damage them so take care not to let them fall. The Bowflex has moving parts and adjustable dials which won’t withstand too much punishment, especially if the dumbbell is fully loaded.
  • You also won’t be able to perform pushup exercises using the Bowflex as a hand-hold. The plastic structure won’t withstand the weight of the average man for long without straining and possibly breaking.

Overall, we really liked the Bowflex. They are not designed for hardcore lifters, CrossFit athletes, or anyone that plans to train with extremely heavy weights. For the average guy, who needs to save space, and plans on implementing some new and challenging workouts in his routine, the Bowflex is a solid choice.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#2. Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells

Despite the rather strange brand name, these adjustable dumbbells are solidly built. They also look more like traditional dumbbells than the other products reviewed.

Made of cast iron, the emphasis here is on durability. There’s also a fine coating on every plate that will help prevent rust. Be sure to check the plates for large scratches or chips from time to time. The handle length is 16”.

The Yes4All dumbbells offer a comprehensive range of weights from a lateral-raise friendly 40lbs right up to a squat-heavy 200lbs. When buying a set of Yes4All dumbbells be aware that you have 6 options to choose from.

One Yes4All adjustable dumbbell is sold on Amazon as a single handle only. If you need a pair make sure you order the pair set. The 200lbs set comes with sixteen 16lb plates as well as many smaller plates to make incremental adjustments easy. The smallest and cheapest set has just four 5-lb and four 3-lbs plates. For most guys this will be a bit light so you’ll probably want a heavier set. Especially if you plan to see some gains.

Choose wisely so that you have room to improve without needing a new set. Don’t get a set of weights too light either or you’ll lose interest. Test out some weight variations at a local gym and gauge how far you will progress once you start training. Buy a set that gives you the best value and the greatest range.

Plates are secured on the handles by a star-lock collar. Simply spin the lock on the thread to prevent loosening.

What we liked:

  • Nice grippy, solid chrome handles that give extra security for when you work up a sweat.
  • Quick to assemble and change weights.
  • The handle is a standard size so you can easily add more plates in the future.
  • 5 year warranty.

What we didn’t like:

  • It can be slightly time-consuming to unscrew the collar. If you are using these weights in a class or following some kind of tabata training, you might be pressed for time when adjusting weights.

Yes4All’s company tag line is Better Quality. Lower Price. The company seems to have gone a fair way to achieving this claim. The dumbbells are good quality and the price is affordable without being too cheap.

Give these dumbbells a try if you like your workout equipment to be as simple as possible. They are easy to use, and have less points of failure than some other sets.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#3. PowerBlock Elite Dumbbells

PowerBlockElite

The funkiest looking dumbbells you will ever see. If you like ultra-modern aesthetics then this could be the workout equipment for you.

When I first saw the PowerBlock Elite Dumbbells I dismissed them as a gimmick. I’m a bit old school when it comes to weight training. The thought of reading a manual just to learn how to lift some plates did not appeal to me. However, PowerBlocks are easy to handle and simple to adjust.

The Power Block looks like a cage, or an open box. There’s a handle in the centre that allows you to lift the

Although they give the appearance of being plastic and fragile, these are not cheap products by any means. Starting at around $300 the Power Block Elite are dumbbells made from quality materials and are designed to last. They are manufactured in the USA and the customer service is excellent. You really have nothing to worry about when investing in these products.

There’s a range of 5 to 50lbs per handle and that gives you a large variety of weights to choose from: 2.5, 5, 7.5, 10,15, 17.5, 20 25, 27.5, 30, 35, 37.5, 40, 45, 47.5, 50lbs per hand.

What we liked:

  • Shorter (12”) than standard dumbbell handles , so you have more free room to maneuver
  • Easy to store thanks to their compactness.
  • With practice you can change weight on each dumbbell in about 5 seconds.
  • 10-year warranty. The Power Block company is confident that their exercise equipment is built to last. The company has been around for almost three decades so you can be sure that the warranty will be honored.

What we didn’t like:

  • Expensive. At almost the same price as the IronMaster dumbbells (see below), the PowerBlocks are truly an investment. Choose wisely.

The power blocks are not aimed at beginners. Experienced lifters will find the extra weight and durability to their liking. If you can already lift the heaviest dumbbells in your gym then the power blocks will be a great addition to your workout kit.

PowerBlockElite2

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#4. Bayou Fitness Adjustable Dumbbell

The Bayou Fitness adjustable dumbbells are striking in appearance. The look so good, in fact, that they make me want to work out.

The Bayou Fitness company’s products are almost in the same price range as the Power Block if you go for the heaviest option of 50lb pairs. They are aimed more at serious lifters or beginners with a bit of extra spending power.

The dumbbells ship with storage trays that help protect them.
At 14” long the handles are slightly shorter (by 2”) than the Yes4All products and slightly longer than the Power Block (by 2”).

Keeping to what appears to be the standard weight increments for this type of equipment, the Bayou Fitness dumbbells uses 2.5lb plates for the lightest options.

The bar itself weighs 5lb so adding 2lbs to each side will bring each dumbbell to 10lbs in weight. That’s good enough for intermediate lateral raises, performed with good form. (No swinging the hips or arms guys!). Maximum weight on the cheaper option is 25lbs when using 4 plates per side. Note that this might not be enough for strong lifters. In that case the 50lb pair might be worth checking out. Unfortunately there’s no real discount when doubling the weight. The 50lb dumbbell pair costs almost twice that of the 25lb.

What we liked:

  • They look good, and hopefully so will you after using them.
  • Compact and neat.

What we didn’t like:

  • Limited Warranty of 180 days. This doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in the product.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#5. Ironmaster 75lb Quick-Lock Adjustable Dumbbell System with Stand

IronmasterDumbbells

The most compact of the five products reviewed, the Ironmaster is also the most expensive and the heaviest.

The Ironmaster Dumbbells use a system called quick-lock, which is the company’s system for securing plates. Safely securing weight plates to the handle of dumbbells should be something we take seriously. Plates that come loose are seriously dangerous objects, when in motion. You’ll spend a lot more on hospital bills if your dumbbells malfunction when you have them over your head.

Don’t skimp on quality, especially when it comes to choosing how your adjustable dumbbells are fastened.

The ‘quick-lock’ is simply a large screw that connects through each plate and into the handle. I feel that it’s one of the more secure methods of attaching plates securely. It goes to show that sometimes the simple, original methods work best.

To change plates just unscrew the lock (can be done with one hand), grab a plate with your other hand. Add the new plate and with the screw the lock back in. The first plate will connect with the handle and subsequent weights connect to the other plates via grooves on the plates.

These are the only dumbbells in this review that come with their own rack. They are also the most expensive. But we can’t imagine that the rack stand adds much to the cost of the dumbbell. It’s definitely not going to win prizes for strength or beauty.

Going right up to 75lbs in weight for each handle these dumbbells are suitable for most amateur lifters and athletes.

For real pros, these dumbbells have an add-on kit (purchased separately) that give you up to 120lbs or 165lbs per dumbbell. That’s some serious iron. If you can lift that much, you deserve the best in equipment. I you want a solid set of ‘bells that will last you a lifetime, these are a good option.

The empty handle (without plates) weighs 5lbs. Add the screw locks and you have 10lbs per dumbbell. You could either warm up with these or use them for some tricky lateral type raise movements (see exercises earlier). One thing to note is that at higher weights, such as 100lbs, each dumbbell becomes quite long. Full-range overhead presses, and bench presses will be more difficult when lots of plates are loaded.

The company claims that you can drop their dumbbells. In fact, they encourage you to do so. We banged the dumbbells together and let them fly from a height a few times to see what happens. Not much. They acted as if nothing had happened, just as a regular dumbbell in the gym would. We did most of the testing on hard, rubberised gym floors, however. There’s a good chance of breaking them if you do the same on concrete, especially if they land at an angle. I wouldn’t recommend testing this theory.

What we liked:

  • Lifetime warranty. Beating even Bowflex’s 10-year warranty, Ironmaster have made a statement about the quality of their products.
  • Feel like gym dumbbells that most people are used to using. The also look old school solid.

What we didn’t like:

  • Ok, it’s only a gripe if you’re not doing circuit training, but the speed at which you can change plates is slower than most of the other dumbbells reviewed here.
  • The stand. It’s not built like the rest of the product. It’s flimsy. For all the bravado about durability, I wonder why Ironmaster didn’t put some extra though into the stand.

IronmasterDumbbells

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

Safety Tips For Using Adjustable Free Weights And Multiple Weight Dumbbells

And now to the boring part, safety concerns.

We wouldn’t be good fitness citizens if we didn’t mention the fact that dumbbells can be dangerous. The adjustable versions can be even more dangerous due to the extra mechanics and points of failure.

Here’s some tips to make sure you get the most out of your dumbbells and to stay safe while training.

Don’t drop any adjustable dumbbells onto a hard floor

They won’t last if repeated impacts with the floor loosens the mechanisms that provide the weight-changing ability. Standard dumbbells can take a lot more punishment but we’re dealing with a more complex piece of kit here. If you plan on dumping the bells from a height regularly you would be better off investing more money into a full set of individual dumbbells. If you can’t handle the weight, go lighter. Most people will use this equipment in their home gym or front room. There’s no room for the ego there, so remember, only go to your own limits and your adjustable dumbbells will last you a lifetime.

Secure the plates well

Some exercise routines call for fast changing of plates. Be sure to secure the plates onto the bar as one slip and you might break a toe or worse. Even if plates miss your body as they fall, the imbalance created by the sudden loss of plates on one side will put you off balance. Falling while holding heavy weights could be disasterous. Be safe!

Get used to them before trying heavy lifts

If you are used to standard dumbbells in the gym, you might need a little time to get used to the target size of adjustable ones. The handles are longer, to accommodate the different weight plates, and this can be a little cumbersome for some people. Make sure you keep an eye on objects around you and your range of motion when performing exercises with the dumbbells. Poking yourself in the chest with a barbell handle is not laughing matter.

Summary/TLDR

Want to go heavy? Use theIronmaster 75lbs (up to 165lbs) dumbbells. As a second choice thePower Block is a quirky looking, yet heavy duty piece of kit.

TheBowflex andBayou dumbbells provide the least amount of room for expansion but have the lightest plates (i.e., more versatility) in their most expensive option.

If you’re primarily interested in circuit training then thePowerblock or Bowflex give you the advantage.

For weight training on a budget, we would choose theYes4All orBowflex options.

And finally, if you like your workout equipment to look good then you’ll love theBayou orBowflex.

Reviews and Ratings Of The Best Inversion Tables For Your Back And Joint Pain

Excruciating back or joint pain got you yelling F-bombs and being short with your coworkers?

An inversion table may help relieve your pain and stop you from treating that intern like crap.

Inversion tables are a way of achieving spinal decompression, or spinal traction.

Rather than your feet pointing toward the ground, inversion tables allow your head to point down, thereby inverting your body’s positioning.

The big point here is that rather than gravity pulling you down and putting all the pressure on your joints, spine, and feet, gravity will pull things “apart”, and give things in your body more space.

Many people find relief from general back pain, joint pressure relief, muscle tension, herniated discs, sciatica, and much more. Let’s dive into the differences between the top units and compare them to find you the perfect fit!

Rating The Top 4 Inversion Tables

Quick Note

There’s a lot of total crap out there on inversion tables that looks super sketchy. Videos that look like they’re from the 90s with people who make all sorts of scientific claims without anything to back them up...it’s a weird place on the internet.

We’re going to be honest with you. There’s limited scientific data to back up many of the claims made by proponents of inversion tables. There certainly are some, which is good, but just not many.

The bottom line is that while it’s not a replacement for longer term pain relief and fixing what’s actually wrong with your back, there are literally millions of people who use these things, and it seems quite a good majority of them believe that occasional use offers good short term pain relief.

We’re not going to try to make a load of claims about how perfect these are, because frankly we can’t back them up. But again, to us, the biggest thing these have going for them is simply the fact that yes, they feel good to use, and yes they can help lessen or relieve some forms of back and joint pain.

Alright, so inversion tables have been around for about 50 years, but the media blew a study out of proportion in the 80s and scared the pants off of everyone. Even though the study’s author came out and was like, “uh, hey guys, that’s not what we said and we actually don’t think inversion tables are bad”, the damage was done.

However, they’ve recently become popular again, as more health professionals, university studies, and even the US military find uses for inverting.

A study was done at the Regional Neurosciences Centre in Newcastle Upon Tyne in the UK that showed that patients awaiting surgery for pure lumbar discogenic disease were much more likely NOT to need surgery if they engaged in intermittent inversion as well as physiotherapy.

Not too bad, right? Clearly some benefit.

Some doctors say that inversion therapy doesn’t provide long-term relief from back pain, though. Basically that means that even though it makes you feel good after you’ve done it, it is not likely going to fix the root of the problem if you’ve got a bad back.

For anyone who’s experienced back pain, you know that even short-term relief from your pain can be a tremendous boost to your day and your mood. By using an inversion table a couple of times per day, you could be lessening the negative side effects of your pain issues and improving your quality of life.

Just a quick note that people who are pregnant or who have:

  • a hernia,
  • glaucoma,
  • retinal detachment,
  • conjunctivitis,
  • high blood pressure,
  • recent stroke,
  • heart or circulatory disorders,
  • spinal injury,
  • cerebral sclerosis,
  • swollen joints,
  • osteoporosis,
  • unhealed fractures,
  • surgically implanted supports,
  • use of anticoagulants, or
  • ear infection,

should probably not use a table. Just be smart! As always, consult your doctor before using if you’re unsure.

The Benefits Of Using An Inversion Table

Pain Relief

Like I said, inversion table has been shown to reduce back and joint pain, even if only in the short term.

As I write this, lying down or hanging partially upside down are the only things providing comfort. A poor movement on a deadlift has my lower back feeling a bit “off” right now, and it seems removing pressure is the only comfortable way to not want to scream. I’m also performing stretches given to me by a chiropractor which I know from experience helps this particular pain immensely. But, being inverted a bit certainly feels nice while it’s happening.

So if you’re suffering from lower back pain, sciatica, muscle tightness, or some other painful spinal injury, it’s likely that you can achieve at least a little while without pain.

Stress Relief

While pain relief is obviously the major reason you’d look into getting an inversion table, did you know that inverting and resting can be incredibly stress relieving and calming?

There is some evidence that even moderately angled inversion can help reduce stress in the muscles, which helps to release tightness and stress throughout the body.

This can be particularly useful to become more aware of how you are tensing your body through the day. If you invert and feel a loosening sensation in your shoulders, for example, you might only then realize how you have been tightening your shoulders throughout the day, leading to pain and more stress.

The first thing you need in order to make changes to your habits like this is awareness, so finding out which areas of the body are currently most stressed and strained is an important step in reversing it.

Joint Relief

Decompressing by hanging upside down may help lubricate your joints and help them become better shock absorbers by nourishing the cartilage.

Posture and Flexibility

Some people find that decompressing helps muscles loosen, as mentioned above, which can lead to greater flexibility and a better posture.

If you find yourself hunched over, and are able to invert a couple of times per day, it can allow your muscles to stretch out, and combined with the spinal relief you’ll get, you may well find yourself standing straighter and more tall after a few sessions.

As with the stress point, being made aware is the first step to changing something. So, not only can you finally get to grips with the realization that your posture is lacking, but you can feel exactly where you need to work on in order to get it back to the optimal position.

Fitness and Workouts

Ok, let’s be honest, if you’re getting an inversion table in order to turn it into your workout station, just stop. There are better ways.

But, did you know you can actually do a few quick exercises while hanging from your inversion table?

Things like inverted squats, inverted crunches and situps, and inverted rotations can help build core strength.

Again, while I don’t not recommend getting a unit just to be able to do these exercises, you may find that adding them into the end of your session, depending on your fitness level, is a good way to make sure you get a short workout in.

Our Reviews Of The Best Tables

#1. Teeter Inversion Table EP-960 (EDITOR’S CHOICE)

As they are proud to tell you, Teeter is the only inversion table manufacturer here to have been “cleared by the FDA to treat back-pain related conditions and symptoms” (including back pain, sciatica, muscle tension, degenerative disc disease, herniated discs, spinal stenosis, spinal curvature due to tight muscles, muscle spasm & facet syndrome).

Now, this may be because it’s usually prohibitively expensive to get these kind of clearances, but either way, it’s actually pretty impressive.

They are clearly a leader in the space, and even have stand up desks and massagers, so they’re not just a one trick pony. I’d label them more as a back and posture health company rather than just someone who makes inversion tables.

The EP-960 is their top of the line unit, which isn’t completely different from the slightly cheaper EP-560, but has a few extra bells and whistles to make operation easier and potentially safer.

Vital Stats

Height Capacity: 4’8″ – 6’6″ (142 – 198 cm)
Weight Capacity: 300 lbs (136 kg)
In-Use Height: 86″
Assembled Weight: 64.8 LBS
Warranty: Full 5-Year Warranty

Teeter appears to be the easiest company to trust. They show how they perform pretty rigorous testing (including tests that are only voluntary in the industry). They seem to go above and beyond when it comes to making sure they’re making a quality product, and for something I’m going to be hanging upside down from, that’s kind of important.

Say what you will about this coming straight from the company, but it’s pretty clear that they’ve put together an impressive product after watching this video.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

The Teeter is easy to assemble, and you should have it up and running in about 15 minutes, and includes documentation so you know how to use it and get going right away.

Other than being a leader in the space and having legit products that are well made and that actually work well (honestly, we’re only recommending the best, so they all work), this model is all about comfort and convenience.

Ankle locks that you don’t have to bend down to engage.

Extra long handles to make it easier to pull yourself up and give you more flexibility (no pun intended) when determining how best to use it for your unique situation.

Preset rotational guides so there’s no guess work as to where you’ll end up and how many degrees you should be at.

Easy to recommend this as one of the few inversion tables out there to seriously consider.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#2. Innova ITX9600

The Innova is literally the best selling table on Amazon, which means an awful lot.

Did you know that quite a few people shop on Amazon? And quite a few people buy inversion tables on Amazon?

And that a ridiculous amount of people give it good reviews? Literally 7% of people gave it 3 stars or less. That’s insane.

So, for that reason alone, we’re interested and you should be, too.

Unlike the Teeter we mentioned above, there’s not a lot to this unit. They say they’ve got a patent pending cover, so I guess they’re trying to be innovative, but I’m not excited about a protective cover.

Interestingly it also has a 300 pound weight capacity, which actually surprised me at first because I thought for a cheaper unit, you’d only get 200 or maybe 250.

Vital Stats

Height Capacity: 4’10” – 6’6″ (147 – 198 cm)
Weight Capacity: 300 lbs (136 kg)
In-Use Height: 63”
Assembled Weight: 62 LBS
Warranty: 1-Year Warranty

It has a predetermined slot system that allows you to pick what angle you invert to, from 15 to 85 degrees. The backrest is quite wide and soft, which isn’t necessarily the case for all of the other tables out there. Otherwise, it’s pretty slim on features.

But, it seems to work.

A few things that may make you want to buy this include your desire to have a flatter, more cushioned backrest, an adjustable headrest, and one of the cheapest – but still useful – units on the market.

If that sounds like you, we (along with basically everyone on Amazon) can recommend this.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#3. IRONMAN Fitness Gravity 4000

The beast of the bunch, the Ironman unit can handle up to 350 pounds. If you’ve been reading this thinking, “man, these wimpy things only handle 300 pounds, what the flip am I going to do?”, this is what you’ve been waiting for.

Otherwise, it is pretty well made in terms of covering the basics. Non slip floor pads, waterproof material on the backrest, wide base, etc.

One thing we did like was it’s really easy to engage the ankle supports and like the Teeter above, you don’t have to bend down to adjust them. If you’ve got a bad back and you have to bend down to adjust them, you’re probably going to be upset.

OK this isn’t directly related to this unit, but can we just agree that companies who make inversion tables are some of the most uninspired brands out there? It’s all about tiny features that partially make them different than their competitors.

Well, they’re all pretty much the same, they shouldn’t do all that much (they’re designed to hang you upside down, don’t screw with it by adding too much stuff), and the brands behind them are so corporate. Between the videos, the horrible websites…it’s hard to not want to just buy the first one you see to stop the pain of going through any more.

HOWEVER, that’s what I’m here for. I’ll give you the run down on a couple more units just in case you have a really specific need (i.e., you’re over 350 pounds…then, get this Ironman one). Then I’ll let you know what I recommend as the best of the best. Alright, let’s carry on.

Vital Stats

Height Capacity: 4’10” – 6’6″ (147 – 198 cm)
Weight Capacity: 350 lbs (159 kg)
In-Use Height: 65”
Assembled Weight: 75 LBS
Warranty: 1-Year Limited Warranty

Since it can handle more weight, it’s heavier than the other units, and wider than the other units.

The Ironman is really your unit if you want a pretty good table that can handle a lot more weight.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

#4. Ironman IFT 4000 Infrared Therapy

Alright, this is quite similar in terms of look and features to the Ironman we talked about just above, but it’s equipped with remote-operated Infrared Therapy to provide a bit of warmth and relief for your back as you use the table.

Vital Stats

Height Capacity: 4’10” – 6’6″ (147 – 198 cm)
Weight Capacity: 350 lbs (159 kg)
In-Use Height: 65”
Assembled Weight: 75 LBS
Warranty: Lifetime frame warranty, 1-Year Limited Warranty on most other parts

As most things are the same on this as the previous unit, it will really come down to whether you’d like the extra heating element to help relieve your back pain.

Some people believe infrared technology helps significantly, with things like infrared saunas taking off in popularity, but it’s another one of those things that definitely feels good but lacks significant studies that absolutely prove it’s the best of the best.

Basically, if you’d buy a car with heated seats, buy this versus the normal Ironman unit above.

>> Click Here To Learn More And See Prices <<

What To Look For

Quality is probably the most important thing you can look for, since you’ll be relying on the table not to drop you as you dangle by your ankles. You think your back hurts now, just wait until your inversion table gives out on you and you come crashing down. No thanks!

Also make sure you’ve got the ceiling height for it. Some of these are higher than others, and many are significantly higher when they’re folded up and out of the way. So if you think it’s going to be close, make sure you measure your ceiling height and make sure it’ll fit.

If bending down is difficult, choose one of the non-bend-over ankle locking mechanisms.

All of the unit we’ve covered here have great reviews, serve a purpose, and could work for you, so it comes down to basically your price sensitivity, how much additional tests mean to you (the Teeter backs up their quality claims), and whether or not you need infrared therapy in your unit.

That leads me to my final recommendations.

Best of Best

If you want the best, go with the Teeter. It’s the best unit for the money, even if it’s not the least expensive.

They go above and beyond in testing their units, they’ve been around for 30+ years, they’ve got a lot of documentation and customer support, and their products clearly work.

Add in a 5 year warranty when everyone else in the biz gives you 1, and it’s really hard to go wrong, even for the added cost.

>> Get The “Best Of The Best” Teeter Inversion Table <<

Best Bang For Buck

The Innova ITX9600 has far fewer frills, but if you’re looking for a good inversion table at the lowest price, the Innova seems like the way to go. 

Not only is it one of the cheapest options, but it’s the best selling option on Amazon, and as noted, almost no one hates it.

The ankle locking mechanism is a little old school, but if you’re not in absolutely debilitating pain, it shouldn’t be too much trouble to make sure it’s set up right.

It handles the same amount of weight as the Teeter and we actually liked the ability to adjust the headrest, so overall it’s a pretty solid piece of equipment.

>> Get The “Best Bang For Your Buck” Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table <<

How To Use An Inversion Table

This will depend on the individual table you buy.

However, you need to start by securing your ankles in the ankle locking mechanism. Ensure it’s tight so that it will actually hold you while you’re inverted, and not drop you.

Most units will have a strap or similar adjustment to make sure you can’t go beyond a certain angle. Unless you are used to doing a full inversion, ensure you have set this strap or dial so that you are not accidentally stuck in a fully inverted position.

Start slowly. Invert only 20 or 30 degrees at first, and do not stay on the table for more than 2 or 3 minutes.

Over the course of a few weeks, you may find that you are becoming used to the inversion and can slowly increase the angle at which you invert.

While inverted, you can simply relax and decompress, or you can do light rotations and lower back arches.

Either use your arms to bring you back to a non-inverted position, or use the handles, depending on the model you have, to pull yourself back up to a non-inverted position.

Based on our recommendation, here are two videos showing how to use the Teeter.

Safety Tips

Like everything you read on the internet, please consult your doctor before doing any of this.

Obviously make sure you have chosen a sturdy model.

Make sure your ankles are locked in securely. If you fully invert without a good lock on the ankles, you could slip out of the ankle hold.

Go slowly in every way you can think of. Time inverted, angle inverted, times inverted per day. Start very slowly and increase only after you are sure you are comfortable. Start with 20-30 degrees inversion for 30 seconds, and then come out of it. Then the next day, add a few seconds or a few degrees. Make sure your body is reacting well to it as you increase the intensity.

Always start with a spotter! Do not attempt to use this alone in case you fully invert by accident and can’t get out of it.

FAQ

How long should I hang?

Start with one or two minutes. The sweet spot seems to be working up over a month or two to three to five minute sessions, though some people hang for ten or fifteen. We think that’s a bit excessive. The rule here should be that you are comfortable while inverting, and if you become uncomfortable, it’s time to stop.

What angle should I use?

This depends on your comfort level, again. With the goal likely pain relief, you have to experiment to see what works with your body. Start a small angle, just barely past horizontal. As with the time of each inversion, you should slowly work up to a deeper angle. Anywhere between 30 and 70 degrees seems to work best, though the more you invert, the more of a decompression sensation you will feel.

Do I need to invert 90 degrees?

It’s not necessary, and companies like Teeter suggest that even just 60 degrees is a perfect angle for relief. However, some people do enjoy the feeling of being completely upside down, and if you can achieve this angle safely and with comfort, you can certainly try it out.

How often should you invert?

Start with one or two times per day. Once in the morning after waking and once before bed is when most people give it a try. Most people find that regular use is the best way to keep pain away. As noted by the doctor referenced above, it doesn’t seem to be a long-term solution to some back pain causes, but can help with the day to day pain. Therefore as long as you’re using it regularly or when you are feeling pain, you should be good.

How long before it works?

Like everything, this depends on your body and why you’re using the table. It could be the first 30 seconds, it could take a few weeks of regular use. The only way to know is to use it regularly and track how you are feeling.

SOURCES