Which Dumbbells are Best, Rubber or Steel?

When it comes to weightlifting, dumbbells are probably the most common type of weights sold. They’re highly versatile, can isolate various parts of your body and can grow with you as you get stronger. If you’re looking to put together a home gym, starting with a set of dumbbells is a great idea. However, you’ll need to make a few decisions when it comes down to what kind of dumbbells you want to get. Which dumbbells are best rubber or steel? In this article, we’ll weigh up both options to help inform your decision.

Steel Dumbbells

Steel dumbbells are typically a cheaper choice for your home gym. But they’re also the most traditional type of dumbbell having been around since home gym equipment became popular on the market. Steel dumbbells may come as a single unit with a fixed weight or they might be adjustable and allow you to add or subtract weight plates depending on the exercise. The main drawback of plain steel dumbbells is that they can easily cause damage to your floor if you drop them. There isn’t any sort of protective coating that reduces their impact. This can also result in rust if the dumbbells are allowed to get wet. A positive for non-coated steel or iron dumbbells is that they are typically smaller than those coated with rubber or urethane. The coating of rubber dumbbells makes them a lot larger and subsequently, they take up more space.

Rubber Dumbbells

Rubber dumbbells are also composed of steel, metal or iron, but they have a rubberized coating. This coating makes rubber dumbbells more expensive than steel or iron dumbbells. In some cases, rubber dumbbells can be twice the price of traditional dumbbells. Aesthetically, many people think that rubber dumbbells look better than uncoated ones, however, this is largely a matter of choice, especially with the advent of chrome coated dumbbells. Rubber dumbbells will add a layer of protection if and when they are dropped on the floor. You also won’t have to worry about your rubberized dumbbells getting rusty. As mentioned, rubber dumbbells are typically much larger than iron or steel dumbbells and will require more space for storage. If you only have a few dumbbells this may not be a concern, but as your collection grows, the amount of space taken up by rubber dumbbells will become quite noticeable. Brand new rubber dumbbells will also have a very distinctive odour which can cause problems in small, unventilated spaces. This may not be such a big problem if your workout in your garage, but rubber dumbbells have been known to make an entire house smell like rubber. Over time, and with exposure to direct sunlight, the rubber can become cracked and start to peel off the dumbbells. Where you locate your gym may play a role in the type of dumbbell that works best for you.

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