Bowflex Selecttech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells Review

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If you want to have strength training at home, a pair of adjustable dumbbells is the best workout equipment you can invest in. They are versatile and compact home exercise equipment. And, one of the best weights out there is Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells. They are modern and convenient to use thanks to the unique dialing system. They substitute many dumbbells so that you can save space.

Read on to find out why thousands of people think Bowflex dumbbells are the best buy units out there. And, why they are on our best adjustable dumbbells list.

Bowflex Selecttech 552 Review



  • Easy storage and space-saving
  • Full body workout
  • Weight range: 5-52.5 lb
  • Convenient handle
  • 15 different weight options (substitute multiple dumbbell sets)
  • Great design
  • Suitable for all types of training


  • Sometimes the dial system jams
  • Just plastic tray



1. Trusted manufacturer

Bowflex has a good reputation in the home fitness industry. Their cardio machines, home gyms, and workout benches are among the most popular items. People love their products for their versatility, durability, and convenient training experience. Also, the company provides excellent support. In this case, you get 2 years warranty, and if you order through Amazon, you get free shipping.

2. Weight adjustment and increments

One pair of Bowflex weights is 52.5 pounds (23.8 kg). Hence, for two-handed exercises like bench press, you can lift up to 103 pounds (46.7 kg). That maximum amount provides an acceptable resistance. Although serious lifters can get the Bowflex 1090 dumbbell set that weighs 90 lb (40.1 kg) per hand (or Powerblock). For typical home workouts, 552 will do.

You can adjust the weight by 2.5 pounds (1.13 kg) increments for the first 25 pounds, and 5 pounds (2.26 kg) from 25. This was a wise idea from Blowflex since beginners or girls can raise the resistance lightly. While people who are familiar with lifting weights, usually increase the load by 5 lb.

3. How can you adjust it?

sets of dumbbells

The main reason why people love Bowflex is the dial weight system that provides a quick and silent setting. You just turn the dial system to the desired amount of weight, and you are ready to train. This is beneficial since you can speed your training. You do not need to spend time changing the weight plates and tightening the collars accurately.

The convenient dialing mechanism is what makes it an outstanding free weight. The dial system is particularly beneficial for those who do circuit training when you have to switch quickly from one exercise to another. With a traditional dumbbell with collars, it is impossible to change the weight plates in seconds.

For example, you can use Bowflex 552 for high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which is proven to be the most beneficial way to burn fat and at the same time, get stronger.

4. Save space & money

At first sight, the Bowflex dumbbells seem to be pretty pricey. However, it substitutes 15 pairs of traditional fixed-weight dumbbells that even require a rack meaning extra cost (such a set starts about 500 bucks.) Also, if you buy everything individually, they need a lot of space.

So, if you have a lack of space at your home gym, they are for you. By the way, 552 is the right choice for people living in a small apartment since they are easy to store, for example, under a bed. The required workout space is minimal.

5. Useful bonus

You can download the free Bowflex SelectTech App that is an excellent assistant to get started with home training. You can create your logs, follow ready-to-use workout routines at various levels, or you can create your custom plans. (Lately, the Bowflex dumbbell set does not come with a workout DVD, but there thousands on plans online.)

6. About the Bowflex 552 Stand

The stand is a well-built piece with a sturdy frame. When you put the weight on it, it does not wobble thanks to the extended bottom stabilizers. The installation is also not complicated, and additional hardware is given. Finally, its design is modern and stylish that fits with 552, 560, and 1090 Bowflex dumbbells.

There is only a little problem with the assembly since the instructions are not very clear. Also, you should tighten the dumbbell bases at last since you cannot insert the media stand then. Read more reviews here.

Bowflex dumbbells 1090 vs. 552 comparison

Bowflex Selecttech 552 Bowflex Selecttech 1090
5-52.5 lb. per dumbbell, 2.5 pound increments up to 25 lb. 10-90 lb. per dumbbell
15 settings 17 settings
Compatible with the stand Compatible with the stand
dial system

Bowflex selecttech adjustable dumbbells with stand


While 552 is one of the best-rated home fitness equipment, they are not for everyone.

  • Limited maximum weight: The max weight is 52.2 lb (23.8 kg), and the unit cannot be expanded in any way. For an average level trainer that resistance is enough for exercises like biceps curls, shoulder presses, etc. But, if you want to perform compound moves such as dumbbell squats, deadlift, etc. they are not enough. And for pro athletes who are used to lifting.
  • Long dumbbells: The length of a unit from dial to dial is 16.5 inches (42 cm), which is pretty long compared to ordinary dumbbells. You may need time to get used to that, mainly if you are shorter than average.
  • Sticking dialing system: Most of the customers are very satisfied with their purchase, but a few complaints about the dialing system that does not function as smoothly as it should be. This is the situation when you have to use the warranty.
  • The plastic tray: The plastic try you get is not the most durable. So, do not drop the dumbbell on it. For an extra cost, you can get a unique stand that is more durable and comfortable to use.

How do they feel during the workout?

The handles are covered with rubber giving a safe and comfortable grip. Compared to regular dumbbells, the bar is slightly longer and thicker as well. People with big hands may find it more convenient for the grip.

As I mentioned before, the length of the dumbbell is somewhat long 16 inches, no matter which weight you have selected. That length does not stop you from doing the exercises, but at the beginning, it felt strange. The more you workout out with it, the faster you get used to it.

By the way, such extended length has benefits. When you perform the exercises, a lot of secondary, stabilizer muscle groups are activated. For example, when you do bicep curls, your wrist, and lower arm as it is harder to control the dumbbell.


Is Bowflex SelectTech 552 for you?

The Bowflex Selecttech 552 dumbbells, just like any other set of dumbbells, are very versatile pieces of home gym equipment. Suitable for weight training to build muscle mass and strength (and with that increase your metabolism). You can also use them for HIIT to burn fat and develop your endurance. Also, they are compact weight sets that you can easily store. Perfect workout buddy for a home for an average level trainer. However, if you are a heavy lifter, I would not recommend it to you.



If you need heavier weights, Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells are worth considering. They are high-level weight lifting equipment with a quick-lock system. They adjust from 5-75 lbs in 2 1/2 lb increments, but they can be extended up to 120 lbs. The set also has a compact and very sturdy stand. Ironmaster weight set is made for pros without a doubt.

Powerblock dumbbells are another option. You can choose from various weights. The starter is 50 lb per hand, and the highest is 120 lb. But each is expandable.

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  • Versatility
  • Easy to use
  • Functions & design
  • Price
User Review
4 (1 vote)
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James Wright

James (36) has been working out since he was 15 years old. He has a home gym where he pumps iron, does bodyweight workouts and boxing. He likes sharing his experiences with others who want to build a better physique.


  1. William

    I hesitate between buying Bowflex dumbbells with a workout bench and paying for a gym membership. Which do you suggest?

    1. James

      Well, it depends on what are your goals and if you are familiar with lifting weights.

      A pair of dumbbell and a bench is the best option for those who are not so serious about weight lifting. I mean, they do not want to be big and bulky like the guys at the gym. They want to shape their muscles and get stronger a little bit. They can have a total body strength training at home, but for big muscles, other equipment is required.

      On the other hand, if you also get a barbell set and power rack, you will have a home gym that is suitable for muscle building. All the stuff costs about a thousand buck.

      If the gym membership is expensive where you live, I’d prefer home workout equipment. In a year or two, you will be at your money. Plus, you can work out whenever you want.

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