Whether you are buying a new bench specifically for dumbbell workouts, or looking for a stronger design that can support heavier barbell workouts, the Universal Five-Position weight bench by Nautilus has features that will suit your style of training.
To ensure your workouts are as comfortable as possible, thick padding has been provided in the seat and back support, which has also been contoured to promote greater freedom of movement around the shoulders.
This is extremely important, as although your neck and lower back should stay firmly against the bench when performing pressing type movements, your shoulders need to be able to move easily so you can bring the weight down and get the most benefit from each rep.
As its name suggests, the Universal Five-Position bench provides you with five different positions for performing exercises, ranging from a 10 degree decline to a 45 degree incline (no vertical position).
While this will be perfect for many home gyms, if you feel you would need the vertical position for shoulder presses, it may be worth taking a look at the Bowflex SelectTech Series 5.1 bench instead.
One final feature worth mentioning is the foam rollers attached to the front of the bench. These are crucial for ensuring your body stays in a fixed position and doesn’t slide down the back support when the bench is set to its decline position.
Universal Five-Position Weight Bench – Features Summary
- Adjustable bench offers five positions (-10, 0, 15, 30, and 45 degrees) and dozens of exercises
- Challenges your entire core and upper body
- Contoured shape and five-inch foam rollers ensure safe and comfortable workout
- Stabilizer levellers provide stable base on almost any type of flooring
- Measures 17 by 25 by 51 inches (W x H x D); 250-pound maximum user weight; 430-pound maximum user weight and lift load
Wide range of exercise options
One of the great benefits of the five different positions is the range of exercises this supports compared to your standard flat weights bench.
With the back support set to its decline position, this is an excellent way of performing decline crunches and situps if you want to target your abs, or even decline bench press if you want to focus on your lower chest development.
While the foam rollers have been added to tuck your feet behind for support in the decline position, if you choose not to use the decline position then this can always be removed with no negative effects to the strength or aesthetic appeal of the main bench.
Exercises possible when combined with a high quality dumbbell set:
- Incline dumbbell flyes
- Incline dumbbell curls
- Seated hammer curls
- Seated side lateral raises
- Flat dumbbell press
- Lying tricep extensions
- Dumbbell pullovers
- Elevated lunges
- Decline situps
- Decline dumbbell flyes
In a similar way to the Bowflex bench reviews, customer reviews for the Universal Five-Position Weight Bench are almost completely positive, with around 90% providing either a 4 or 5 star rating (highest available).
One of the main benefits reported in the reviews is its light weight. With an assembled weight of just 33 lb, this is considerably lighter than many weights benches up to twice the price, making it ideal if you will need to be moving the bench out of the way between workouts.
After reading through many of these reviews, the only real negative is the decline position isn’t made particularly clear. To set this bench in a decline position, the support bar needs to be lowered beyond the lowest support point.
Even though this is then not resting on any support positions, each of these positions has been designed with a narrow channel in the top, which the support bar sits inside to ensure you are completely stable during your decline workouts.