The different types of dumbbells in comparison

Die verschiedenen Hanteltypen im Vergleich

Barbell vs. dumbbell

Who will win the race?
We'll break down all the advantages and disadvantages here so that your decision might be a little easier.

Let’s start with a few facts that are fundamentally important.

When it comes to choosing the right dumbbell for your strength training, there is hardly a "better" or "worse". You don't have a clear advantage with a barbell, but you're not prepared for everything with dumbbells either. Before you decide on one of the two options, we recommend trying both in a gym near you. That way, you can find out straight away which is your personal favorite and what you can use to do your training best. If you don't have this option, hopefully our summary will help you.

Dumbbells are so-called small fitness equipment. The most important factor here is the isolated training of specific muscle groups. No other weights target individual muscle groups as precisely as dumbbells.

Barbells are larger fitness equipment that are used primarily to train the chest and upper body, but not only that. Targeted training of a specific muscle group is less possible with them.

There are a few factors to consider when looking for the right dumbbells.

It is difficult to compare the different bars with each other. For example, if you lift 80 kg with a barbell, you will almost certainly reach your limits with 40 kg per hand.

Get an overview

PRO dumbbells:

  • Freedom of movement in every execution (open movement chain)
  • A quick “pump” of the muscles is possible
  • Isolated arm training
  • Natural movements are possible
  • Very versatile - can also be used as a supplement to bodyweight training
  • Muscular imbalances are more easily balanced
  • Coordinative skills are strengthened

CONTRA dumbbells:

  • Too much weight at the beginning causes overload of the muscles
  • Lack of stability during training for inexperienced people
  • Possible discouragement as relatively low weights are used

PRO barbells:

  • Hardly any strain on the lower back (the load is transferred to the bench via the arms and shoulder girdle)
  • Less incorrect loading due to closed movement chain
  • Also suitable for beginners
  • The bumper plates can be attached and removed as desired
  • The number of repetitions increases due to bilateral loading
  • The deep, stabilizing muscles are less stressed, which allows for higher weights
  • Drop training is possible


  • Correct lifting of weights must be learned
  • Heavy strain on the back if not performed properly
  • Working without momentum
  • Coordinative skills are less strengthened
  • For certain exercises 2 supporting persons are necessary
  • It is recommended to purchase a weight bench

Every dumbbell, whether short or long, requires correct execution. Keep your back straight, tense your stomach and actively pull your shoulders back. This Base voltage requires almost every exercise.

For training with dumbbells, a good stability essential to prevent incorrect loading and injuries. Increased stability also means the activation of more muscles and muscle fibers.

How much weight you need to use clearly depends on your training level and the exercises you want to do. If you work more on your shoulders, you usually need less weight. If you want to specifically build up your biceps, you will definitely need more weight.

In our e-books you will find a variety of exercises that show you how to keep yourself and your body fit. Have you already read our Youtube channel seen? We have also put together special workouts for you together with competent trainers.

What is a barbell for anyway?

A legitimate question. We would of course like to go into this in more detail.
With an Olympic or SZ bar, various basic exercises such as bench presses, deadlifts, squats or shoulder presses can be performed perfectly.
The SZ bar, which is used primarily for balanced arm training, protects the wrists perfectly thanks to its particularly curved shape. The SZ bar is ideal for curls. You will clearly feel the difference to the Olympic bar.

And what do you need dumbbells for?

Free weights, here again we are talking about an open movement chain, require more strength, concentration on the muscle group being trained and coordination. A fluid movement sequence combined with a stable body, with the help of body tension.

Drop sets are much easier to perform with dumbbells. If you do them with barbells, you will need two other training partners and the exercise will take longer. None of this is necessary with dumbbells. Arms, back, buttocks and legs benefit from dumbbell training, as do the abdominal muscles.

The function of a combination dumbbell

Our NEOLYMP combination dumbbell has the special advantage that it can be used as a barbell AND as a dumbbell. This gives you an ideal barbell set for everything your training plan calls for. The weights can be changed quickly and safely so that there is no long interruption to your training.

How many repetitions make sense?

The answer to this question depends on the weight and your training level. However, we generally recommend 10-15 repetitions per side and 3 sets. Advanced users can of course increase the repetitions and the respective sets. This will encourage sustainable muscle growth. This requires regular, continuous training.

Muscle growth

It should be noted that muscles actually only grow during the recovery period. It is actually a misconception that this happens during training.

However, an intensive stress stimulus was applied during training, which subsequently leads to an improvement in performance. But an important indicator for this is time. There are amazing processes that take place in our body and, above all, in our muscles.

How long you should give your muscles time to regenerate depends on a number of factors, such as your diet, but also the scope and intensity of your previous workout.

However, it is recommended to target various muscle groups in each workout. For example, if you trained your upper arms on Monday, concentrate on your legs on Tuesday and on Wednesday on your stomach. This way, the respective muscle groups can recover while you strain and challenge other muscles. Scientists say that it is beneficial to train each muscle group twice a week. Experienced athletes, on the other hand, train each muscle group on average once a week. Here you can clearly see that theory usually does not correspond to reality. Listen to your body and explore your personal limits. But avoid overstraining your muscles. How about a split training?

Swing and Snatch your Kettlebell

Swing and Snatch? We understand your questions and will tell you a little bit about it.

An overhead snatch of the kettlebell is the definition of a snatch. This exercise is guaranteed to get your heart rate up because it requires the activation of a large muscle group, primarily the back. The shoulders are also intensively challenged due to the movement over the head.
The snatch requires a high level of strength and stabilization. Strong hip extension and a stable shoulder girdle are also necessary.

The second central area is called "swing". Here, as the name suggests, your kettlebell is swung. These exercise variations primarily target the thigh muscles as well as the lower back and buttocks.

With a kettlebell you can increase your endurance and strength incredibly effectively.

Find out more about Topic Kettlebell out of here!

Savings sets to ease your wallet

We have put together various sets for you across our product range. This way you can save money on larger purchases. You will find the perfect bundle for gentler training sessions as well as for tough weight training. There is sure to be the right set for you too.