There are a few basic styles of weight lifting benches you can choose from, but no matter which one you end up selecting, you will see some substantial muscle growth. Here we will outline the aspects of those basic styles and what you can expect when purchasing them.
First, we got the super simple flat bench. It is a very basic bench, but it’s still very useful. Using this bench, you can perform very beneficial exercises for the upper body that require you to lay still in a flat position, such as a chest press with dumbbells or barbells, and so on. You can also use this bench like a regular bench, to sit on it. Once you are sitting, you can do the bicep curls or shoulder presses. So the flat weight bench is super cool for weight lifting. But, this versatile bench can also be used for cardio, like for stepping up or high jumps. Quality flat weight benches have a high user weight capacity, and they should be very stable, simply because there is no adjustment mechanism present. It also means that you can safely lift very heavy eights when sitting or laying on them. Also, they are quite small, and they don’t take up a lot of space. The bad part about this weight bench is that it is not adjustable, so you cannot perform incline and decline exercises, so you have a smaller list of available activities to do on this bench. Remember that the flat bench does not have a stand for weights, so if you want to do presses, make sure that you have a rack before attempting to do so! All in all, the flat bench is good enough for everyone, but it misses a power cage if you want to lift weights effectively.
Adjustable benches are the most popular kind simply because you can set them to incline and decline levels. Just because of those few simple settings, the range of exercises you can do expands greatly, and you can target your upper body more efficiently. As an example, inline presses are a simple exercise that people do on these benches, focusing on your upper chest, or decline presses that work on your lower pecs. Usually, the models support five or six different positions plus the flat one, but some models go up to ten, or even more. Don’t let the adjustments worry you, they are easy peasy and can be manipulated with just a pin, or a ladder that is considered the safest way to adjust your bench. And lastly, even though they do have many features, they do not need a lot of space, which is great if you live in a cramped up space. But that flexible board can also bring problems to the table. Most of the time, there is a gap present between the cushions when the weight bench rests in the flat position. The backrest and the seat, when placed flat, need to rest in a horizontal position, and so naturally, a gap appears between the two. If that gap is too big, it will bother your back, and you won’t be able to focus on working out. You should also mind the price – the cheaper models might not be so stable, so you might even fall over when working out, which is the last thing you need when carrying heavyweights. Again, you need to get a power rack, since these benches do not come with one. Always check the weight capacity before buying the bench! The cheaper models can sustain only 300 pounds, which is not enough for serious lifters.
And last but not least, the Olympic bench. This bench is the most versatile one. They will give you the best possible user experience, since they combine all the features from the previous two benches we mentioned, while also having a power cage for safe presses. The boards here are adjustable as well, so you can easily do incline and decline exercises. Thanks to the power rack, which can be heavy by itself, the balance of the weight bench and the stability is improved. Also, these benches work just fine with Olympic bars, giving you even more ways to exercise. And they have quite the user capacity! The only con we can think of is their price – expect to spend a lot for this gem.