If you're looking for free weights to compliment your home gym, or even to set up a small workout area in your garage, then whether it's dumbbells or Olympic discs, we've got it covered. GymEquipment.co.uk works with leading manufacturers to bring you a wide range of free weights, dumbells and discs at some of the best prices on the web. From dumbbell sets to PowerBlocks, Olympic bars to discs up to 25kg in weight, we work with specialists like Jordans Fitness, Physical Company and PowerBlock.
As well as working on your cardio fitness, many people want to ensure they build strength and stamina. You can use machines like cable cross overs or leg presses, but for real control and for isolating specific muscles, free weights are ideal! There are a number of choices available to you when it comes to strength training, but one of the best is probably the simplest-free weights. Essentially they are called free weights as there is no limit to the range of motions you can perform.
The most common types of free weights are barbells - where you load weight plates on to the end of a bar, the benefit of these is that as you become stronger so you can increase the heaviness of the weights. If you are buying barbells you will also need to look at buying a bench and a rack to get the most out of your workout. Dumbells are another type of free weight and are smaller and can be held in your hands. Then there are kettlebells, solid weights that have a slightly round body made of cast iron and a single handle. They are particularly useful for lifts and swings. Finally there are medicine balls.
The benefits of free weights are very clear when compared to machines. The main advantage is that they mirror real life movements better than machines and you can do several different movements in one exercise. And finally, you have to work harder! With free weights you need to engage more muscle to get the balance and stability you need, hence you will burn more calories.
Another major advantage of free weights is that they can work out more inexpensive than many machines. You could get a full body workout by combining a number of free weights and they require little maintenance, which can happen with machines. And whilst you need to store them carefully and safely they will take up less room than a large gym machine, so free weights are a great choice when developing a home gym.
It is worth bearing in mind however that there are dangers to using free weights. Learning to isolate a muscle when using free weights takes training and involves slow, controlled movements. Performed too quickly some free weight exercises can cause injury and be more about momentum than the muscle doing all the work.
Probably the most popular type of exercises performed with free weights include, for the upper body, the bench press, front raises, upright rows and shoulder press. For the legs try free weights for the dead lift, squat and snatch. And for the abdominals there is the side bend and the medicine ball in particular is good here for the twist, crunch and reverse medicine ball crunch.
When buying free weights check out the composition of them, this will normally explain the price differences. So dumbbells can come with a rubber or neoprene coating. Kettlebells can also have a vinyl coating to make them more comfortable to hold. Some free weights come in different colours so you can spot weight differences.