Dumbbells have been around for a long time, but if you want several weight options, you either had to have a lot of space for fixed-weight dumbbells or a lot of patience for swapping out plates using collars and pins. That is until now.
The Sportbell™ Lite from Aspire Fitness Products make it easy to change your dumbbell workload from 1 lb. to 10lbs —all it takes is a quarter turn to lock or unlock each plate, slide it on or off, and you’re all set.
We tested the Sportbells™ with upper-body and lower-body exercises at various weights, and they performed as advertised, comfortable and easy to adjust. We also used them as a stable base for push-ups and planks, and they worked well for reducing wrist strain while offering a secure hand placement. They appear to be very durable, and the 10-lb. unit didn’t damage our laminate floors when dropped from a height of 3 feet.
Because it replaces 10 sets of dumbbells weighing 1–10 lbs., the Sportbell™ Lite is especially practical for personal trainers who haul equipment to client sites. Fitness enthusiasts with limited space for equipment will also appreciate the compact, modular design. People with intermediate-to-advanced strength levels will need higher weights than are currently available with the Sportbell™, but this product should work well for beginners and those who are very deconditioned.
The Sportbell™ can be asymmetrically weighted, and this can be helpful for injury rehabilitation or correction of strength imbalances.
The Sportbell™ duffle (sold separately) is a well-designed, sturdy bag— the custom-molded urethane insert is a nice feature, and the manufacturer’s 30-year warranty speaks well for the quality. But the premium price may make many fitness professionals skip the bag and just go with the dumbbells.
Compared to traditional cold and clunky iron dumbbells, experiencing the Sportbell™ Lite is like moving from black-and-white to Technicolor. The pleasing colors and comfortable, versatile design backed by a 2-year warranty make it a good value for fitness professionals — and anyone looking for high-quality home exercise equipment.
What we liked:
- Easily interchangeable rectangular plates
- Perform as advertised and don’t damage the floor when dropped from a height of 3 feet
- Perfect for beginner and very deconditioned exercisers
- Equivalent of 10 pairs of dumbbells
- Soft grip handle and weight plates
- Fun colors
What we didn't like:
- Intermediate and advanced strength-levels will need higher weights
- Premium price for duffel bag
February 24, 2011