How do the Bowflex Elite, Power Pro, and Extreme stack up ?
No discussion of strength trainers is complete without Bowflex reviews, as it is one of the most popular names in the home gym arena. With its ubiquitous commercials, they are one of the most recognizable brands of exercise equipment.
There are many different versions available, including the Bowflex Elite, Power Pro, Extreme, Ultimate, Sport and Motivator, some of which are marketed exclusively for chains such as Costco and others.
At the lower end of the spectrum is the Bowflex Motivator at around $800 and available at Sam’s Club. At the high end is the Ultimate, with four models running from $1599 to $1999.
Bowflex reviews show that all models are based on the same premise, with composite rods of varying thickness providing the resistance, as opposed to the weight stack of traditional home gyms. The basic Bowflex comes with a lat tower for pulldowns, tricep pushdown, leg extension/curl and squat attachment, 210-lbs of resistance with an upgrade to 410 lbs.
Further up the line is the Sports model, which is similar to the Bowflex Elite sold exclusively at Costco, then the Bowflex Power Pro, Extreme (Xtreme) and finally the Ultimate. As you move up the product line you get more features, more exercises, more standard weight resistance, etc.
Bowflex Reviews – Are they worth the money?
Even the most basic model, at around $800, is a little pricey, especially compared to the Crossbow by Weider, which can be half the price for similar models.
Still, Bowflex Power Pro and Bowflex Extreme offer a nice variety of upper and lower body exercises, albeit not as effective as a regular gym workout with dumbbells and weight-stack machines.
It is quite difficult to get used to the range of motion of rod-based machines, and they must be fully bent to achieve the desired weight. Also, even the most adept person will need several hours to put the unit together.
**UPDATE: Bowflex Power Pro models were recently recalled due to safety issues.
Fitness Events Opinion & Recommendation:
Through our Bowflex reviews, we discovered that bending rod machines such as the Bowflex Elite and Weider Crossbow just don’t offer the same high-quality workout as weight-based machines, so if you are deciding between the two, we definitely recommend the latter.
The motion of a Bowflex Power Pro and Extreme is rather awkward and does not provide the uniform resistance of a weight-stack machine. For anyone who has been in a gym before, these machines take some serious getting used to. Yet even when you are comfortable with the motion, you’ll see that it still does not provide as effective a workout.
Our Bowflex review revealed that the only advantage the Bowflex Extreme and other units have over metal weights is that they are lighter and easier to move around. But with the hefty Bowflex price tag, if you don’t mind the bulk, a metal weight machine is definitely the best choice in home gym equipment.
If you are interested in a quality Bowflex machine including Ultimate, Xtreme and Blaze models, they offer a wide selection of home gym equipment at the lowest prices and free shipping on their site.
If you have had experience with Bowflex Elite, Power Pro, Extreme, Sport or any other models please drop us a line and let us know what your experiences were. We will certainly add your comments to our Bowflex reviews.