NordicTrack is well known for its high-quality cardio equipment, but you might not have realised they also have a range of strength equipment.
Here we have the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight dumbbells which if you can't guess from the name are adjustable dumbbells.
Currently, in the UK, these dumbbells are only available as a 25kg pair, although a smaller 12kg version is available in the US and we expect it to arrive in the future.
So the question is, do the dumbbells live up to the high standards expected of NordicTrack?
To find out we have put them to the test and created our NordicTrack dumbbell review. So let's get started.
The Basics - NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells – Two Pairs
What we need to make clear here is that we are reviewing both pairs of dumbbells although the 12kg pair isn't yet available in the UK. But we have managed to see the 25kg pair in action and see how they performed.
They are almost exactly the same in design, which is why we are bunching them into one review.
The big bonus of having adjustable dumbbells is that they effectively replace multiple pairs of regular hex dumbbells. For instance, the 25kg pair combines 15 pairs of dumbbells into one compact adjustable set ranging from 5kg to 25kg.
This helps to save a lot of space while still providing you with everything you need for a fantastic muscle-building workout.
NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells – The Review
When assessing the performance of a pair of adjustable dumbbells, there are several factors to consider such as durability, weight range, performance, comfort, adjustability, ease of use and more.
We will now have a closer look at all these factors to see how NordicTrack dumbbells performed.
The first thing that we want to talk about in terms of the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells is the overall construction.
First and foremost, the mechanism that allows you to adjust the weight is one of the most important factors as it has a big impact on the materials used and design.
NordicTrack has opted for a sliding selector pin which has one selector pin on each side that allows you to slide the pin to the number of weight plates you want. There is then a smaller selector pin close to either side of the handle to adjust the weight increment.
This brings us to the weight plates which are metal coated with a plastic finish which keeps them compact but also helps protect your floor as opposed to straight-up metal plates.
But NordicTrack have left the handle as metal with a nice knurling finish which provides a good grip.
Many other manufacturers have rubber handles which are not as good quality so we are very happy that they went with metal handles.
To store the dumbbells and help change the weights, there is a tray which is made of plastic. Although we like to avoid plastic in strength equipment as much as possible, the tray is just for storage and is strong enough to do the job.
Although we briefly mentioned it earlier, there are 2 different weight options available. A 12kg pair and 25kg pair although the 12kg pair isn't yet available in the UK.
The 25kg dumbbell can be adjusted from 5kg to 25kg in the following intervals 5/6/7/9/10/11/13/14/15/18/19/20/23/24/25kg.
As you can see in the image above you pull the selector pin in line with the large weight plate first.
For example, the lowest you can select is 7kg, but then you can use the incremental weight change slider close to the handle to remove 1 or 2kg to reduce the weight to 5kg.
It can seem a little confusing at first but once you have used them for 5 minutes you get used to the system.
We would have preferred the weight change increments to be consistent. For example, if the weight change could be adjusted in 1kg or 2kg intervals all the way up. Nonetheless, you get a good range of weights to choose from and the jumps in weight aren't too big.
On a side note, quite often the weight of adjustable dumbbells can be quite inaccurate in terms of how much they weigh. But NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are pretty accurate which is nice to know you are lifting what the dial says.
NordicTrack hasn't yet confirmed what the 12kg set weight increments will be. But if we convert the US version then the weight intervals will likely be 2/4/7/9/12.
The 12kg pair won't have the smaller increment changes so the variety of weights to choose from will be slightly more limited. But they will be even more compact.
Durability and Longevity
One of the most important factors to consider when looking at adjustable dumbbells is how durable they are.
Now, what we need to say right off the bat is that adjustable dumbbells will never be as durable as regular dumbbells. As soon as there are any moving parts involved, there's always a chance that any of those moving parts can break, a problem that you don't have with regular dumbbells.
With that being said, as far as adjustable dumbbells are concerned, the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are certainly some of the most durable ones out there. All of the weight plates, handles, and other important components are made out of solid metal, which should last for quite some time.
Anything and everything that can be made out of metal is, and anything made out of plastic is made out of relatively high-quality plastic. The only thing that's not very durable about it is the tray that comes with the 25kg pair.
The tray is made out of plastic. If you drop the dumbbells into the tray from a substantial height, the tray will likely crack. But if you are careful then this won't be an issue. Other than that, however, we think that the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are some of the most durable adjustable dumbbells out there.
Adjustability and Ease of Use
Although we already mentioned this above, it is important to note that adjustments are made using selector pins. In terms of ease of use, the lighter version, the 12kg dumbbell, will be a bit easier to use, because it only has a single selector pin, therefore allowing for very fast adjustments.
However, the 25kg version has two selector pins which make it a little bit slower to change the weights but gives you extra weight intervals to choose from.
That said, we do like how easy these dumbbells are to use. Using the selector pins is about as easy as it gets and several other top dumbbell brands like PowerBlock also have an increment changer which slows down the change over time.
But the weight tray also helps make the change over time quickly by keeping the weights organised.
So as far as comfort is concerned with dumbbells, there are a few things we like to look at. Firstly, the distribution of the weight is good and resembles the shape of a normal dumbbell which is well-balanced.
Next up, we briefly mentioned the handle earlier as it is made of metal and has some knurling on it for extra grip and we are a big fan of the handle. Dumbbells in this price range often have rubber handles which can deteriorate over time and become uncomfortable. So we are very happy with the handle as it gives a true dumbbell feel.
Another important comfort factor is the shape of the end of the dumbbells. If you look at the Bowflex Selecttech dumbbells for example they have an awkward turn dial on the end which makes them very uncomfortable to rest on your legs as you get ready to do an exercise. But the NordicTrack dumbbells have a flat end which makes them comfortable to rest on your legs.
Plus, the length of the dumbbells gets shorter as you select less weight, this makes them less bulky and more comfortable to use as some dumbbells can feel very bulky to use and restrict your range of movement.
Portability and Storage
One of the biggest benefits of the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells is of course the portability factor. The portability and space efficiency factors here are why these dumbbells are so popular.
Just think about it, the 25kg set combines 15 pairs of dumbbells into one pair. So instead of needing a weight rack for all those dumbbells, you have one set that takes up only 49cm(L) x 21.5cm (H) x 30cm (W).
Although, we would have liked to see NordicTrack offer a stand for the dumbbells and chances are they will release one. A stand would make it even easier to quickly change over the weights as you wouldn't have to put them back down on the floor to change the weights over.
Another benefit of getting the dumbbells from NordicTrack is that you get a free month's trial of their iFit app. This gives you the chance to follow along with strength workouts or any other workouts available such as Yoga.
Who Are the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells Designed for?
Something you might be wondering is whether or not the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are right for you. Well, there are several factors to consider here.
Even if these NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells were three or four times more expensive than they are, they'd still be much cheaper than purchasing a full set of regular dumbbells.
Even a set of rubber hex dumbbells which tend to be the cheapest rubber dumbbells would set you back about £1300 and that doesn't include a rack to store them.
So you'll end up saving a whole lot of money by buying dumbbells like these.
They’re Space Efficient
These dumbbells are also designed for people who are a bit tight on space, such as people who live in small houses or apartments. Just imagine how much a full dumbbell rack takes up in terms of spatial requirement, compared to two small dumbbells like these.
Even the larger 25kg NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are just 49cm(L) x 21.5cm (H) x 30cm (W) when in the tray. So, you don't need much floor space for them, and once you've done your workout, you can pack them away in a closet.
They’re Easy to Use
The NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are also designed to make them quick and easy to use. There are adjustable dumbbells out there that are quite slow and difficult to change the weight on, but this is not the case here.
They have a simple slide pin design that enables you to quickly change weights and get back into your workout.
They’re Compact When Being Used
The other bonus worth noting about these particular dumbbells is that they're very versatile as they are quite compact and the length of the dumbbells gets shorter the less weight you have selected.
Unlike the Bowflex Selectech dumbbells which are the same length no matter how much weight you have selected which can make them bulky and awkward to use. But there is no such problem with the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells.
Who Should Avoid the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells?
Now, these are really good dumbbells, but the simple fact of the matter is that they aren't perfect for everybody.
For instance, the heaviest version here goes up to 25kg, which might not be enough for some users.
Furthermore, the quality of the dumbbells is good and they can be dropped from low heights. But if you are looking for weights you can throw around then you might need fixed-weight dumbbells that can withstand the abuse.
NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbell Review – The Verdict
The bottom line here is that the NordicTrack Select-a-Weight Dumbbells are perfect for anybody who needs a versatile pair of dumbbells for at-home use. Whether you want a lighter or a heavier workout, there are options for you.
The simple fact is that these are some of the most durable adjustable dumbbells out there, especially considering their relatively low price, not to mention that they have other beneficial features as well. Overall, we would rate these as some of the very best adjustable dumbbells out there.