Strength in Stability: The Ultimate Weight Bench Buying Guide for Weightlifters

weight benches guide

Weight benches are used in commercial and home gyms across the world, and they are an essential item for anyone who enjoys weightlifting.

But there are lots of types of weight benches, and some are better than others. Some benches are also more suitable for you depending on factors like your training requirements, space available and budget.

We’ve put together this buying guide to help you make the best decision when you choose your next weight bench. Read on to find out everything you need to know.


Why Does Choosing the Right Bench Matter?

A good weight bench leads to a more effective workout, providing you with more comfort and a safer experience, which is more enjoyable overall.

If you just choose the cheapest bench you come across, it could end up affecting your workouts for years. If you have a commercial gym, it could lead to complaints and even members leaving.

A good bench is something to spend your time choosing, so don’t rush it. You want to find a top bench that you enjoy using and that will last for years. You don’t want to be worrying about how safe you are when you are lifting heavy weights, and you want to be able to focus fully on your workout.


Where Will the Weight Bench Be Used?

The first thing to consider before you even look at models is where you will be using your weight bench. Will you use it in your own home gym? If so, you will need to make sure there is enough space. The amount of space will probably be more limited in a small home gym. That being said, most benches are not too large.

Will it be used by you alone, or will your family members be using it too? This is an important consideration. If it’s just for personal use, you won’t need to worry too much about how adjustable it is for other people. Also, will you need to move it and store it out of the way when it is not in use? If so, a bench that is easy to move and fold down will be a good choice.

A bench for your commercial gym is another matter. Space is not an issue, but you want to make sure it can be comfortably used by many different people. It should also be solid and durable so it lasts a long time, bearing in mind that it will get near-constant use.


Types of Benches

Once you’ve considered where it will be used, you need to consider the types of benches available. There are several bench types on the market, some of which will be more suitable for you.

The two main types are Fixed Benches and Adjustable Benches.


Fixed Benches

Fixed benches, also called flat benches, are solid benches that are not adjustable. They are the strongest type of bench, and they are very durable. They can support heavy weights, and they are a good choice for commercial gyms.

Because they are fairly simple, there are not many moving parts, and not much can go wrong with them. They are often less expensive, and they are easy to move between areas. They also tend to be quite compact.

One thing you cannot do is change the exercise angles because there is no back support when doing exercises sitting down. However, it can be used for many exercises using barbells and dumbbells, and it can also be used with other machines like cable machines and Smith machines.


Adjustable Benches

Adjustable benches have backrests and can be inclined and sometimes also declined to different angles. They usually have an adjustable seat too. They are sometimes called FID benches, which stands for Flat, Incline and Decline.

Some of these benches have various fixed inclines, while others have unlimited adjustments. That may sound better, but it can make it more difficult to find the same angle you used last time.

They also come with different types of adjustment mechanisms, so try to find one that is simple to use like a ladder-style mechanism, which will be easier for people to use, which is especially important in a commercial gym where people will change the settings regularly.

By changing the angle of the backrest, you can do many more exercises with these benches so there is no need to stick to horizontal bench presses. You can also do incline presses and decline presses, for example. Not all have decline settings, and some have only a very slight decline, so it depends on what you need.

These are not as strong as fixed benches, and they are usually larger and heavier, meaning they are not as easy to move. However, some have wheels to help with this.

Because they have more moving parts, they also have more things that can potentially go wrong. As a result, they are not quite as durable as fixed benches. Wobbly backrests and wobbly seats can also be annoying and affect stability. Quality is, therefore, especially important when you are choosing a model.


Other Types of Benches

There are other types as well, including Olympic benches for heavier barbell exercises. As the name suggests, these are designed to be used with Olympic barbells. They are incredibly strong and durable, and they last for many years. But they are also large, very heavy and not easy to move around. They tend to be more expensive too.

There are also speciality benches for very specific types of exercises, like vertical benches. These are great for training specific muscles, but their functionality is limited.


Factors to Consider

Now we’ve looked at the main types of benches, there are several important factors to consider when making your choice.



If our bench is for your personal use, choose a frame that matches your body type. Commercial weight benches are usually stronger and can be used by people of different weights. A personal weight bench will only need to be as strong as you need it to be to support yourself.

If you use heavy weights, the frame must be able to support the weights so it does not collapse. The frame should be strong, robust and made to last. It should also be stable because a wobbly bench is not great and will be frustrating to use.



The weight may or may not be an issue, and it depends on how frequently you will be moving your bench. If you need to move it for every session, perhaps in the case that you have a small home gym, a lighter model will be more convenient. Just be aware that lighter models don’t tend to be as strong.



You want to be able to place your feet on the floor firmly. Most benches have a height that cannot be adjusted, so just make sure the height is suitable for you or for the people who will be using it.


Back Support

The back should provide good support. The length and the width will differ from model to model, and some benches are longer and wider than others. This is something to keep in mind when you choose yours depending on who will be using it.



Legs provide support for the bench, and they should be strong. It’s best if they are welded to the body, and each should have a foot. Wider feet make benches more stable.

Some benches only have three legs. These are often more stable than four-legged models, and they do not wobble as much.



You want good padding on your weight bench, which means padding that is comfortable but also durable.

You must push against the frame to lift weights, and thick padding will provide comfort and help to prevent injury. The padding should not be too soft, however. A thickness of about two inches is about right.

The padding should be stable, and it should also fasten securely to the frame and not move about. Should be practical as well, meaning it’s easy to clean.


Choose a Quality Product

The same is true of benches as with other gym equipment: you usually get what you pay for. If you want a bench that is solid, safe and lasts many years, make sure you choose a high-quality product from a top brand.

At Pinnacle Fitness, we only sell new and refurbished benches from the best manufacturers in the business. That includes Life Fitness, Pulse Fitness, Blitz Fitness and Technogym among others. That way, you can always enjoy using a bench in full confidence knowing that it’s made by one of the top manufacturers.

Find Your Weight Bench Today

This guide should have given you a good understanding of the most important factors to consider when you buy a weight bench. If you’re ready to buy your new bench, start by looking over the products in our store.

At Pinnacle Fitness, we only stock the best benches from the best manufacturers, and we have benches for a wide range of budgets. Do you have any questions about our benches? Feel free to ask and we’ll always be happy to help.

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