If you live in a small apartment or have no space in your house, it seems to be an impossible thing to have strength training at home. However, you need nothing else just a pair of adjustable dumbbells and a compact weight bench. Of course, it is not going to be a commercial gym, but still enough to work every part of your body.
The dumbbells do not need so much space to store, but a workout bench does. What can you do with it after your training?
Well, there are a few options you can choose from.
- You can get a small flat bench such as Marcy that has minimum dimensions. They are lightweight and easy to relocate, but you will have to neglect incline and decline exercises.
- Another option is a folding bench such as Supermax which can set to flat and adjustable. After your workout, you can fold it up and place it under your bed or in a corner.
Which one do I recommend?
Well, it is hard to tell since it depends on your level and goals. But, adjustable workout benches are more versatile to use. Most of them are FID weight benches meaning flat-incline-decline position, hence, you can do more types of exercises.
My top picks
SuperMax Folding Bench
2Small & cheap
Marcy Flat Bench
Body Solid GFID225
Reviews of the best folding weight benches
How I picked the bench models
To make my comparison, I considered the most critical factors of foldable workout benches, such as weight capacity, adjustability, designs, dimensions, and padding. A compact size and the ability to fold are also considered. For good strength training at home, all of these aspects are important. Machine prices and online ratings are also taken into account.
Why trust me
With 25 years of working out in the gym, I have lots of experience. My strength training includes using a variety of gym machines. When a machine isn’t designed right, it puts the user in an awkward position. Additionally, I know how terrifying it can be to be on a weight bench that creaks and wobbles. So, I made this best weight benches with compact and folding design list carefully.
1. SuperMax Adjustable Weight Bench
- 800 lbs weight capacity
- Adjustable backrest with 12 positions
- Folded size: 51″ L x 23.5″ w x 9″ H.
- Set up Dimensions: 59” L x 23.5” W x 48.5” H.
- 1 Year limited warranty
- Reasonable price
The SuperMax Adjustable Weight Bench is for you if you want a decent amount of weight support, sturdy construction, a compact design, and an affordable price.
What are the pros?
This foldable workout bench is an excellent price/value item which costs around $100, highly adjustable, folding and has high weight capacity.
The maximum capacity of this compact gym bench is 800 lb which should be enough for big lifters. It is made of durable materials and it has a triangular support structure making it stable and heavy duty.
Furthermore, it is an FID bench so that you can adjust it in 12 positions from -20 degrees to 80 degrees. In addition, it has adjustable leg hold down with three positions. This feature is beneficial, for example, if you do decline bench press or chest flyes.
The backrest is padded with 1.75-inch high-density foam which is not very thick, but still comfortable. The width is 12″, and the length is 33.5″. Not very long and wide, so I do not recommend it for people higher than 6.1 feet.
The folding size is 51″ L x 23.5″ W x 9″ H. Very small. It also has transportation wheels making relocating convenient. On top of that, it is just 35 pounds.
To sum up, this is an excellent compact folding weight bench under the bed. High capacity, small, highly adjustable. Good for an average height person.
What are the cons?
A few years ago, there were some complaints regarding the shipping of the product. This problem seems to have been resolved.
Big guys also complained that the backrest was too narrow. This problem was solved by making the back pad longer and wider. This has improved the bench’s comfort.
The quality of this weight bench can be compared to that of expensive gyms. Despite bench pressing more than 350 pounds on this bench, it doesn’t bulge at all. I felt safe and secure while exercising with heavy weights.Karanta – Read more customer reviews about SuperMax Adjustable Weight Bench here
2. Marcy Utility Flat Bench
- 600 lbs weight capacity
- A compact flat bench (no folding)
- Set up Dimensions: 43L x 14W x 17H inches
- Affordable piece
- Warranty: 2 years
Space-saving design makes this bench ideal. Its durable steel frame is super durable, and it’s super portable. So you can stay in shape anytime, anywhere.
What are the benefits?
If you do not need adjustable backrest, but reliable weight training equipment at a low price, Marcy is worth to consider. Although, it is not fold up, but small, since its dimension is just 43L x 14W x 17H inches. Besides, it is only 20 pounds, so it is easy to move around.
Marcy is a heavy duty small bench that has a 1.25 x 2.25 inch rectangular 14 gauge tubing frame with a durable powder coating finish. The supported capacity is 600 pounds.
Thanks to the rather thick and extended stabilizers, it does not wobble and sturdy. Also, its high density deluxe boxed upholstery makes it very convenient to use for exmaple when you do flat bench presses.
Unfortunately, I have to mention that there are a few problems with shipping, mainly because of missing parts. But, the manufacturer reacts quickly to the complaints, and customers got the missing pieces soon.
To conclude if the folding and adjustable backrest is not essential for you, you need a small exercise bench, then go for this flat utility bench.
I find the pad itself to be very firm and suitable for my usage. Even though I’m 225 pounds, the bench was rock solid when I did hip thrusters with 165 pounds. I’m not sure if you can find another this small and sturdy foldable exercise bench at this price.Amazon user – Read more customer reviews about Marcy Flat bench
3. Body Solid GFID225 Folding Adjustable Weight Bench
- 600 lbs weight capacity
- 7 adjustable backrest positions with ladder style
- Folding dimensions: 55″ x 16″ x 9″ L x W x H
- Set up Dimensions: 60″L x 18″W x 19″H
- Warranty: Lifetime
You can use this bench right out of the box. It doesn’t need any assembly. It features seven positions for adjustable comfort. For even the heaviest of workouts, the oval tubing measures 2″ x 4″. It folds flat to store under a bed and has wheels for easy transport.
Why is it a good choice?
If you are a perfectionist, who likes working out with the best workout equipment, Body Solid GFID225 something you should check out. This foldable bench press is also a good purchase for those, like me, who are not good at assembling things or do not want to spend time with it. On top of that, you get a lifetime warranty on everything if you use at home.
This multi-purpose bench has a heavy duty 2 x 3″ oval tubing, a very sturdy construction. The maximum capacity is 600 lbs enough for most of us. It perfectly fits with power racks or Smith machines as well.
The backrest and the seat are covered with 2.5″ Durafirm padding which is very convenient to lie and sit on. The upholstery is easy to clean and non-slippery at all. This piece of fitness equipment is made with ergonomic design.
You can choose from 7 back positions (incline, decline, and flat). The angles are -20°, 0°, 5°, 30°, 45°, 60°, and 75° degree. Without a doubt, many options to choose from, but for shoulder press, I prefer a higher angle, over 80°.
A big thumb up for the ladder style adjustable positions which is a safe and very convenient function to switch between the angles. No need to spend time with latches and pins that may fall out.
The length of the backrest is 61″ which is pretty long. Hence, this folding workout bench is suitable for tall guys.
After easily folding the legs, the adjustable bench becomes 55″ L x 16″ W x 9″ H. The weight of the machine is 60 pounds, not that light but the transportation wheels make it easy to move around.
However, there are two things that are not so positive. Firstly, compared to other gym stuff here, it costs more, over 200 bucks, but it is commercial graded and comes with lifetime warranty. Plus, it would be good if the seat was adjustable as well, so by changing the angle, incline exercises would be much more comfortable.
Is it for you? Well, this is a sturdy piece from a trusted manufacturer giving an excellent training experience, but a bit pricey. If you lift heavy but have limited space, get this for you upper body workouts.
I like this bench because it is sturdy and easy to adjust, especially for a guy my height (6’3″). It rolls very easily, feels very stable when lifting heavy dumbbells.Alex S. – Read more customer reviews about Body Solid GFID225
4. FLYBIRD Foldable Weight Bench
- 700 lbs weight capacity
- 7 backrest angles, 3 seat positions
- Folding dimensions: 30.3 inch L x 16 inch W x 9 inch H
- Set up Dimensions: 49.2 inch L x 15.7 inch W x 44.5 inch H
- Warranty: 1 year on bench frame
This bench for exercising is pretty affordable, has an easy set-up and stowing, and has a pretty good weight capacity. It has a wide variety of sitting positions in which you can easily adjust, as well as easy to adjust lying positions.
The bench can be adjusted in three positions for the seat and seven positions for the back, as the name implies. With the positioning system, the adjustment is secured with the usual bolt pins and sliding brackets.
Approximately 6’2″ is the maximum user height given by the manufacturer, but taller people find it short for them.
As a stowable bench, it can be leaned against a wall or tucked under a bed to save floor space.
Weight lifters interested in pumping some serious iron should consider this machine since it is constructed from high-grade steel and can hold up to 700 pounds of weight.
The bench pad is large enough to accommodate even the bulkiest individuals and is well-padded and comfortable to sit and lie on. Soft synthetic leather covers the bench pad, which is padded with dense foam. The bench pad measures 49.2 inches long, 15.7 inches wide, and 44.5 inches high, and weighs 28.4 pounds.
This folding bench press is a bit high for some people. In contrast, most weight benches rise 17-18″ off the ground; this one rises 21 inches. This may not seem like much, but will make you feel unsteady as you lower dumbbells.
While the manufacturer claims the bench is suitable for people taller than 6 feet, it is too compact. If you are taller than that, go with a larger bench.
So far, I am satisfied with my purchase. Assembling it was a breeze. My wife and son can move/reposition it easily if needed, but it’s sturdy and comfortable.Amazon user – Read more customer reviews about FLYBIRD Weight Bench
5. Powerblock Travel Weight Bench
- 550 lbs weight capacity
- Folds to 8-in. high
- Set up Dimensions: 40L x 9.5W x 15H
- Dense foam padding
- Limited 10 year warranty.
This folding weight bench folds to a height of only eight inches and features a handle. Comfortably padded with a black vinyl top, this travel weight bench is easy to clean.
Do you want to work out outdoors? Do you travel a lot and do not want to neglect your training? Well, this collapsible bench press is made for you!
In spite of being a portable workout bench, it is very robust made of 14-gauge 2×3 steel tubing with amazing 550 lb maximum weight capacity. However, this compact gym bench only weighs 30 pounds, so not heavy to take it here and there with the help of the handle (maybe girls need some help.)
Folding the legs is easy, remove the pins, and fold the legs, that is it. And, by moving just one of the legs, you can use it for the decline and incline strength training exercises.
The length of the backrest is 40L x 9.5W x 15H inches. Not the most significant size, so I do not recommend it for taller guys over 6 feet. Anyway, that is why it is a portable bench press.
My verdict: This fold up weight bench is an exciting strength training equipment that I would buy if I traveled a lot or I wanted to work out outdoor. Although, for my home gym, I would buy another item.
This compact bench press is built with quality in mind and is perfect for a home gym. Having a side handle makes it easy for me to carry it around, which I find extremely usefulAmazon review – Read more customer reviews about Powerblock Travel Bench
6. Bowflex 5.1S Stowable Bench
- 600 lbs weight capacity
- For versatility, adjusts to six positions: decline, flat, 30°, 45°, 60°, and 90°
- Set up Dimensions: 49.5 x 28.1 x 61.3 inches
Due to the off-the-ground design and wide base, this workout bench is very stable. Plus, it’s easy to adjust and we can choose from the incline, decline, and flat angles.
Bowflex is a famous brand among home gym owners for manufacturing affordable but quality home gym equipment. Users love their 3.1 and 5.1 benches. The only problem with them is their size and that they are hard to store.
Hence, the company comes out with the 5.1s stowable workout bench with space saving and foldable design. It is an enhanced version of the previous one.
5.1s made of heavy-duty steel that supports up to 600 pounds. That max limit is enough for even people lifting heavy weight at home. Also, it is a sign of durability and sturdiness.
The adjustability is also versatile. You can set it in 6 positions from 17-degree decline to 90-degree incline. Of course, the flat level is also available. Setting the backrest is easy. You just need to use a simple pull-out pin.
The adjustable foldable weight bench includes a removable leg hold-down brace which helps to perform the decline exercises more safely and comfortably. Besides, you can adjust the seat in two positions (flat and raised) avoiding slipping off while doing incline dumbbell exercises.
The folding process is simple. It is a push of a button. Also, it is a weight bench with wheels for a smooth relocation.
However, in the flat position, the gap between the seat and the backrest is rather large. It might be a problem for smaller people because that space might put pressure on their back. (I roll up a towel and put it in the hole.) But, the padding is very comfortable on both parts.
To sum up, it is a sturdy, easy-to-adjust and versatile adjustable bench with space saving design and great stability. But, a bit more pricey item. This bench may not be the best choice for you if all you have is storage space under your bed.
Suitable for general use as a fitness bench. As some have mentioned, it has a bit of wobbliness, but this usually goes away when you sit on it with some weight. It takes up about 2×5 feet of space once assembled.Amazon Customer – Read more customer reviews about Bowflex 5.1S Stowable Bench
What to look for when buying a folding weight benches?
1. Strength of the frame
It is a fact that a fold away weight bench will never be as strong as a standard one. The folding function breaks the integrity of the item. Although, for most of the people for home dumbbell workouts will do.
Every bench has a steel frame, but the thickness is different. A 14-gauge 2×3 steel tubing sturdy steel frame is perfect, and most of the gear comes with that. Do not go too much under these values.
The maximum weight limit is a good sign how reliable the gym equipment is. The higher it is, the better. I think a bench should have a minimum of 500 lb limit.
Keep in mind when the manufacturers give the maximum load that the product can stand, that value is for both the user and weight used for the exercise.
Therefore, if you are a big guy like me, I’m 220 lb, you must not invest in a collapsible workout bench that supports just 300 lb. But for a 120 lb girl, it will do.
I say for men at least a 450-500 capacity compact workout bench is the optimal choice, while women can go under those values.
By the way, flat benches have much higher limit than adjustable ones.
An adjustable workout bench is far more versatile thanks to its flat-incline-decline settings. For example, if you do dumbbell chest press, you can target your pecs from various angles.
How many adjustments do you need? Well, I know benches with 12 angles, but we do not need as much, 5-6 will do.
If you prefer to buy a flat weight bench, which costs less, there are no adjustments at all.
3. How comfortable it is to work out on it?
One feature that influences the convenience is the padding of the backrest. Typically the thickness is 2-3 inches which provide a comfortable surface to lie and sit on. If it is thinner than that it hurts your back or butt. On the other hand, if the padding is too thick, you will think into it which is also not good for exercising.
Moreover, check the length and width of the backrest, mainly if you are a tall guy. Typically, the width is 11-12″ which is suitable for most of us. The length is around 45″ which is enough for an average user. However, if you are taller than 6.3 feet, buy a longer bench.
Portable foldable weight benches are a bit shorter than standard ones.
Finally, the upholstery is in most of the cases vinyl which is durable and easy to clean. It can also be leather which provides great feeling but harder to clean. Avoid those items which come with slippery padding.
4. Storage options
Collapsible weight benches come with buttons, latches or pins to quickly to fold the legs under the board. This way, if you have a higher bed, you can put it under it. Some models even have transportation wheels which make relocation even easier.
More tips on how to buy a sturdy weight bench.
What exercises can I do on a foldable workout bench?
With the right foldable bench, almost any type of home workout can be accomplished. All major muscle groups can be exercised using the bench for a number of free weight movements for the upper body. Exercises such as incline and decline presses or bodyweight movements for the upper and lower body can be done with the help of these pieces.
Are foldable weight benches safe?
Providing that the folding equipment is made of a sturdy steel frame, has a solid design, and has a strong structure, it is safe to use. Exercises such as lifting weights, crunches, or curls can be done on it at any angle, whether it’s an incline, decline or flat.
As you see, you do not have to neglect resistance training even if you live in an apartment or have just small space at home. With the help of a bench and a pair of adjustable dumbbells, you can get stronger and shape your muscles.
Last update on 2023-03-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API