Fitness

Bowflex Review

About Bowflex

Bowflex Review

Ready to get into beast mode? Or is “slightly sweaty mode” more your speed? Well, regardless of your fitness level or objectives, Bowflex has got you covered. They offer an expansive collection of exercise equipment to help you achieve your desired results! Designed to provide a full-body workout from the comfort of your own home, their devices are suited for professional trainees or novice fitness enthusiasts alike. 

Did you know that about 80% of Americans don’t get enough exercise? That’s a staggering amount. But, with the hustle and bustle that’s so characteristic of today’s world, it’s not unexpected. Many people find themselves without enough time, energy and/or motivation leftover from the workday to exercise. This is where home exercise equipment like Bowflex may be able to help you out.

Trainer’s Tip: The key to adopting a healthier lifestyle (and keeping it) is having realistic objectives and creating an environment that supports your goals! Set yourself up for success! Life is busy and unpredictable. For many, going to a gym is unrealistic. Training at home is convenient, possibly more enjoyable, and thus more realistic. At home, you can watch TV, listen to your favorite podcast and/or sweat away your stress as you watch your kids play or do their homework.

With an impressive following of over 61.5K on Instagram, Bowflex has been frequently spotlighted by various media outlets, including Healthline, Men’s Health, and NBC News. 

Looking to get back into shape? Perhaps this brand can offer a helping hand. Stay tuned, as this Bowflex review provides readers with an insider look into their products, customer ratings, promotions, and more, to help you decide if they’re worth checking out. 

Overview of Bowflex

Bowflex Review

Established in the ‘Jazzercise’ era of the 1980s, Bowflex was introduced to the world as an at-home solution for working out. This sporting goods brand looked to the future of exercise, as they wanted to offer a cost-effective alternative from gym memberships.

First developed by Dosho Tessema Shifferaw, Bowflex is nothing but innovative when it comes to developing high-tech training machines. 

Operating under its parent company, Nautilus, this Washington-based company has won several internet trophies for its designs, including the Elliptical Reviews Best Buy Award in 2020. They also have a blog dedicated to fitness advice and topics related to healthy living.

“We try our best to practice what we preach, and like you, we all have varying degrees of success. That’s why we focus on creating machines that get you results as quickly and efficiently as possible, so you can get on with your day and live healthier, happier, and better life,” reads a statement on Bowflex. 

Before we get into this Bowflex review, let’s go over some initial highlights you may want to know about the brand: 

Highlights

  • A variety of high-quality exercise equipment and at-home gyms to choose from
  • Offers a digital fitness platform on some of their models 
  • LCD screen plays training videos and on-demand classes  
  • Provides a financing option
  • A blog dedicated to sharing fitness tips and healthy recipes 
  • Tons of happy customer reviews from around the web
  • Return policy doesn’t cover shipping costs
  • Very expensive

Next, we’ll cover a few of Bowflex’s top categories as well as trending products to help you get a better idea of whether they’re a fit for your fitness journey.

Bowflex Bikes Review

Want to go for a bike ride but don’t feel like heading outside? Bowflex offers multiple models of bikes, such as the C6 and Velocore, to do just that. 

You probably learned to ride a bike when you were a kid, and you likely went bike riding just for fun. But, in addition to being fun, biking has a variety of health benefits[1], including weight loss, reduced risk of heart disease, and reduced cancer risk. Down below, this Bowflex review will go over a few customer favorites for readers to compare.

Bowflex C6 Bike Review

Built with an LCD display monitor, the C6 Bike can transform your average cycling experience into a virtual escapade. Compatible with the Peloton, Swift, and the brand’s JRNY app, users can pedal in picturesque locations, such as a beautiful cherry blossom park or through those winding Death Valley roads.

Trainer’s Tip: biking is an excellent and convenient way to improve cardiovascular fitness, but it is yet another form of sitting…and most of us sit way too much as it is. So, if you decide to use biking as your form of cardio, make sure you finish your workout with a hip flexor stretch. Try the Standing lunge hip-flexor stretch. Step your right leg behind you. Keep both feet facing forward and bend your knees slightly. Tuck your pelvis, so your right hip bones move towards your ribs. Feel the stretch up the front of your right thigh. Hold for 30 seconds before switching legs.

In terms of features, this Bowflex bikes model is equipped with dual-sided pedals, a Bluetooth-enabled heart rate monitor, and 3 lb dumbbells for added intensity. It also offers 100 different resistance levels, which can be adjusted as you work out. 

Complete with a free 6-month trial of JRNY, the Bowflex C6 Bike costs $999 altogether. 

Bowflex Velocore Bike Review

The Velocore Bike doesn’t joke around when it comes to endurance training. This bad boy comes equipped with 100 resistance levels and dual-sided pedals. To add even more immersion they have included multiple riding styles such as leaning or stationary.

Endurance training has proven health and performance benefits. For example, regular endurance training has been shown to increase your VO2 max[2]. VO2 max, or maximal oxygen consumption, refers to the maximum amount of oxygen that an individual can utilize during intense or maximal exercise. The more oxygen a person can use during high-level training, the more energy a person can produce. Maximal oxygen consumption reflects cardiovascular fitness and endurance capacity.

In layman’s terms, think of your VO2 max as your aerobic fitness. Why does this matter? A healthy VO2 max is associated with a longer lifespan, a better quality of life, and a reduced risk of disease, among many other benefits.

Do you need more incentive to move regularly? Health benefits from regular exercise[3] include improved sleep, increased interest in sex, stress relief, improvement in mood, increased energy and stamina, reduced cholesterol, and improved cardiovascular fitness.

Compatible with the brand’s JRNY platform, trainees can virtually work out in several hot spot locations, such as a tranquil, scenic mountain or through the Arizona desert using the 16″ or 22″ screen. This Bowflex model also comes with 3 lb. dumbbells to add even more resistance and cardio.

Lastly, it’s set with a display monitor and Bluetooth connectivity to help keep track of your daily progress. The Velocore Bike with a 16″ screen costs only $1699.

Bowflex Treadmills Review

Tie up those loose shoelaces; it’s time to run like a track star. This sporting goods brand offers various models of treadmills, such as the Treadmill 22. Down below, this Bowflex review will go over a few customer favorites for readers to compare. 

Bowflex Treadmill 22 Review

Suited for marathoners or casual joggers, the Bowflex Treadmill 22 offers an indoor solution for when the trail gets too slippery. Built for comfort, this machine has everything you need to get your jog on.

You’ve probably already heard that running is good for you, but what exactly are its benefits? You will probably not be surprised to know that starting a running program can aid weight loss, and continuing to run can support weight maintenance. These are positives since a healthy weight[4] is associated with a lower risk for diabetes, heart disease, certain cancers, and breathing problems.

Customers can choose from a variety of intensity settings, as this machine can accommodate a speed range of up to 12 mph. Built with a 22″ display monitor, trainers are able to see their overall progress. This includes speed, distance gained, workout time, and calories burned. 

To measure your heart rate, it comes with integrated contact grips on the bar handle for easy reading and a bluetooth HR armband. Complete with a your favorite streaming services and music playlist, the Bowflex Treadmill 22 costs $2,699.

Bowflex Treadmill 10 Review

If you happen to be a tech-savvy workout enthusiast, the Treadmill 10 is decked with all sorts of key features. This treadmill comes with a Bluetooth connectivity and an adjustable HD touchscreen.

For those who love to be on top of things, the Treadmill 10 can track your heart rate, calories burned, speed, workout time, and distance. These elements serve as a great way to help you keep track of your fitness goals.

Improve your physical and mental health by going for a jog on this impressive treadmill. One study[9] showed that people who jog have lower stress levels and higher life satisfaction. Lower perceived stress and higher life satisfaction are worth getting your sweat on!

Trainer’s Tip: The worse your mood, the more important the workout. Too often, we wait until we feel motivated to exercise. Flip that. The days you feel stressed, anxious, or overwhelmed are the VERY DAYS you need to force yourself to move, even for 15 minutes. Remember, something is ALWAYS better than nothing! Think of your health like drops in a bucket. The tiny drops don’t feel like much, but they accumulate until one day you think, “Boy, I feel better.”

Additionally, the HD touchscreen can stream shows and movies from your favorite apps such as Netflix, Prime, and Hulu. With a JRNY membership, you can gain access to trainer-led videos and music playlists for every taste. The $1,999 Treadmill 10 has you all set to make you sweat.

Bowflex Home Gyms Review

When you opt for an indoor exercise machine, excuses around convenience should be entirely non-existent! There’s no hassle in driving, and you work on your own schedule. 

With that in mind, this company offers a great selection of at-home gyms on its website. This Bowflex review will take a look at two of their most popular models within this category. 

Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym Review

Say goodbye to those ‘spaghetti arms’. The Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym is all about building muscle. This bench press set includes a no-change cable pulley system that can accompany 20 lbs of overall weight. 

In addition to the physical benefits you’ll get, weight training has been shown to help improve mental health. One review of several studies[5] showed that weight training in healthy adults is associated with reduced anxiety, better cognition, lower symptoms of depression, and improved self-esteem.

The 2X Power Home gym is literally a full gym in one. It includes many of the standard pieces of equipment one would expect to find in any gym. The “lat tower” allows you to do lat pulldowns and triceps press downs. The leg attachments allow for leg extensions and leg curls, while the bench will enable you to perform chest presses.

You can train all the major muscle groups, including the upper back, quads, glutes, hamstrings, and biceps. As a bonus, you can incrementally add weight. This means the gym is suitable for all levels. Trainees can choose from up to 7 built-in workouts, including an aerobic exercise routine and a 20-minute lower body pumping session.

Trainer’s Tip: Want to really have some fitness fun? Create a circuit training routine. Cycle through 3-5 strength moves without resting. Or combine weights and cardio into one supercharged workout. Complete one upper body move and one lower body move and then pop off the machine for a minute of cardio – think jumping jacks and/or burpees. Repeat two to four times. Then pick two fresh strength moves and one fresh cardio move and repeat two to four times. “Enjoy.”

Packaged with a squat bar attachment and an ab crunch shoulder harness, the Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym rings up to a total of $1,499

Bowflex Revolution Home Gym Review 

If you can’t manage to open a simple pickle jar, perhaps it’s a sign to start working out. The Revolution Home Gymoffers a streamlined way to help you get back in shape. Built with SpiraFlex Technology, this model uses the same plate engineering design that NASA is known for. 

Instead of barbells, trainees can use the resistance handles located on either side of the machine. It also comes with a leg press station, a preacher curl attachment, and a vertical bench press to ensure you get a full-body workout. 

Trainer’s Tip: strength training has huge positive health implications, but remember that exercise is only a positive stress on the body when done in appropriate doses and when paired with proper recovery. Meaning, always learn proper form before adding weight, listen to your body, build in off days, prioritize recovery (sleeping, eating, staying hydrated), and progress appropriately. Don’t go from zero to one hundred overnight. 

Made to accompany 600 lbs of resistance, exercise geeks can train in over 100 different ways that differ in intensity levels. For those looking to induce a sweat, we recommend pairing the $2,899 Revolution Home Gym with the Bowflex adjustable dumbbell set

Bowflex Ellipticals Review

Too costly to book a flight to visit Mount Kilimanjaro? Bowflex offers a more affordable option. This Bowflex review will provide a sneak peek selection of their most popular ellipticals down below. 

Bowflex Max Trainer M9 Review

Reach the top of the mountain, even if it’s done virtually with the Max Trainer M9 model. Intended for low-impact workouts, this Bowflex machine comes with 20 different intensity levels and 4 alternate exercise programs. To give readers a taste, this includes a calorie-burning session and the max interval setting.

If you are looking for a cardiovascular workout but you are not into running or climbing stairs, the elliptical might be for you. Worried the elliptical won’t offer you the same benefits as the treadmill? Take a look at this study[6]. It followed 22 moderately active females using the elliptical, treadmill, or Stairmaster. Lucky for you elliptical enthusiasts, the study shows that the women experienced similar physiological benefits regardless of the machine they used, as long as the volume and intensity were similar. 

What does that mean? As long as you put in the work and sweat it out while on the elliptical, you will improve your cardiovascular fitness at a similar rate to a sweat session on the treadmill. So, you can’t zone out on the elliptical and expect fantastic results, but you can’t zone out on any machine and expect results. 

One key difference between the elliptical and the treadmill/sidewalk is that the elliptical offers a lower impact workout. Thus, ellipticals are a great option for anyone, but especially for people with joint or bone issues[7].

Trainer’s Tip: Ellipticals are not just for individuals looking to avoid the treadmill and/or other high-impact sports. Even if you love running and/or your body can handle the impact of running or impact sports like basketball or soccer, that doesn’t mean you should push through a high-impact workout daily.  Mix things up. Alternate days of running with days on the elliptical or pool running. Your body and your mind will thank you. 

Users can stream dozens of on-demand workout classes with a JRNY subscription. You can also keep track of your exercise goals, as the display monitor showcases your pulse rate, distance gained, and time spent training. Designed to be ergonomic, this model is built with a small footprint for ease of storage. 

Trainers Tip: Make sure you don’t become a “cardio only junkie.” A balanced workout is KEY. A balanced program includes strength training, cardio, AND flexibility/mobility exercises. Consider pairing your elliptical workout with exercises using the Bowflex 1090 dumbbell to build strength as well as a yoga or stretch class.

Bowflex Dumbbells Review

For those looking to pump some iron, this exercise equipment brand provides a broad selection of heavyweights for customers to choose from. To help narrow down your choice, this Bowflex review will take a short look at some of their hottest picks within this section. 

Bowflex SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells Review 

Popeye, it looks like your days are numbered. For those looking to gain those impressive muscles,  the SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells set provides all that you need. This customizable model allows users to adjust their preferred resistance, as it ranges from 10 lbs to a whopping 90s lbs.

If you’re not ready to invest thousands of dollars on a workout machine, but still want to get a little something, dumbbells can be a fantastic, lower-cost option to kick-start your strength training. One study[8] took 16 women ages 62 to 94 through a strength routine (using dumbbells and bands) for 1 month. The women improved their upper body strength by an average of 24%. Not bad at all!

Trainer’s Tip: Try committing to one month of strength training. Go ahead, increase your strength by 24%! Why a month? 30 days is long enough to see a difference but short enough that you will not feel overwhelmed. Go for it…make your future self proud!

You can modify its intensity through 5 lb increments, which guarantees safety and provides trainees with a gradual way to increase muscle build. It’s also made to be storage-friendly, as this model doesn’t come with barbell attachments to keep things clutter-free.

If you’re looking to level up your workout routine, we highly recommend adding the SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells to really crush those fitness goals. The SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells set costs $799 in total.

Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells Review

If you’re not graced with extra space to make your own indoor gym, the SelectTech 552 Dumbbells is completely ergonomic and storage-friendly. Compared to barbell attachments, users can simply increase their desired intensity by turning up the side dial. 

Delivering a capacity of 5 to 52.5 lbs, this model can tone your biceps and triceps in no time. For exercise ideas, we suggest doing lunges, curls, and raises as an introductory way to building strength. If you’re an accomplished professional, we recommend looking into the SelectTech 1090 Dumbbells as an added upgrade.

In terms of price, the SelectTech 552 Dumbbells set is priced at $399.

Trainer’s Tip: not familiar with strength training? Before jumping into strength workouts to learn the fundamentals, familiarize yourself with basic form and training principles. For example, you should know what a rep vs. a set is. A rep (or repetition) is the act of going one time through an exercise. If your program calls for 15 reps of a squat or 15 biceps curls with dumbbells, you need to squat and/or curl 15 times. Once you complete all of the reps, you have done one set. Typically, one does multiple sets of every exercise, each one separated by a rest period. To complete three sets of 15 reps, you would do one set, rest, complete another set, rest, then finish your final set. We suggest using a range, say 12 to 15 reps, rather than a specific rep goal (like 15). Start by aiming to complete the lower number. As you get stronger, aim for the higher number. Three other tips. Don’t work the same muscle group on consecutive days. Do complex, multi-joint exercises first. For example, do squats before bridges, starting with two sets, then a minimum of three as you progress. 

Is Bowflex the same as lifting weights?

Bowflex Review

Bowflex is an incredible alternative to going to the gym. Why? Because you can get the same great workout from just this one piece of equipment that you can from an entire gym. As a bonus, no travel time is required. How? The Bowflex machines provide resistance through a cable system – the cable system allows one to mimic motions done with dumbbells and other gym equipment. Think “one-stop-shop” for strength training.

The best part about this “one-stop-shop” is that the weight can be progressed or regressed. No matter your fitness level, you can get a great workout. 

Does Bowflex build muscle?

Bowflex Review

There’s no debate to be made. Any routine that requires strength can help build muscle along the way. With this in mind, Bowflex can be used as a weightlifting device to help build strength.

If you’re looking to gain serious power, we recommend looking into their Home Gym set and their barbell collection. Both offer different types of resistance, which can ultimately support your fitness journey. 

Can you use Bowflex every day?

Bowflex Review

Yes, if you’re looking for a short answer. Bowflex recommends that users train for up to 14 minutes per day when using the Max Trainer elliptical. In terms of their other models, we recommend keeping the routine up on a weekly basis in order to see results. 

Workout times also depend on your fitness goals, as their models can be used to both help lose weight or build muscle. 

Designed with the latest advancements in technology, Bowflex machines include a state-of-the-art fitness program built into their line of exercise equipment. This includes their treadmills, ellipticals, and max trainers. For those who’d rather go old school, they also provide an “unplugged” category of home gyms and their select tech-strength devices.  

Bowflex Reviews: What Do Customers Think?

Bowflex Review

After combing through the internet, this Bowflex review found a generally positive response for this sporting goods brand. Most of their best-selling models garner hundreds of impressive ratings. 

For instance, the Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym set hosts a total of 1,707 comments with a boasting score of 4.6/5 stars. A majority of customers found this indoor set to be versatile, convenient, and worth the investment. 

One elderly user gave his helpful testimonial, “I am a man in his late seventies. I have lost 45 pounds in the last year. As part of my weight loss and maintenance plan, I worked out 3 times each week on the Bowflex classic. I have now switched to the Extreme 2S. It is more challenging, easier to use, and has more targeted exercises.”

Most users stated that it provided a cost-effective solution compared to pricey gym memberships. Others were happy with the results, as the Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym offered an intensive workout session which helped them build muscle.

Amazon holds a score of 4.3 stars out of 5 for the Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym set. Based on 134 global ratings, several buyers have noted that this product helped them achieve a full-body workout. A few customers were quick to mention how smooth this machine operated while providing an adequate amount of resistance

One honest reviewer shared, “The setup does look daunting when you get it out of the box. Was very easy to put together, just time consuming. The exercises are great for the upper body. Does great for chest, back, arms, shoulders, and abs. Legs are a bit lacking but nothing you can’t do on your own to help.”

Is Bowflex Worth It?

Bowflex Review

Is a Bowflex worth it? Based on what we’ve seen so far, this sporting goods brand goes above and beyond when offering an intensive workout session. Most of their exercise equipment is decked out with several useful features.

This includes the LCD monitor, the pulse reader, and their internet-famous JRNY app. We also liked how some of their models came with a space-smart design, as the SelectTech 552 Dumbbells require no barbell attachments.

Users can also train alongside a virtual coach by streaming their on-demand classes. Not only is this a cool feature to have, but it can help with motivation. Customers are also able to access their side blog, which includes a plethora of helpful articles pertaining to fitness advice. 

Overall, if you’re looking for a solid workout plan without committing to any costly gym memberships, Bowflex can easily serve as your go-to solution. 

Bowflex Promotions & Discounts 

Bowflex Review

This Bowflex review found out that there is variety of special offers running for limited time:

  • Max Trainer® M9 – Free Mat + Free Shipping
  • Max Trainer® M6 – Free Shipping
  • Bowflex® VeloCore™ Bike
    22″ Console – Free Mat + Free Shipping
    16″ Console – Free Mat + Free Shipping
  • Bowflex® C6 Bike – Free Shipping
  • Bowflex® Treadmill 22 – Free Mat + Free Shipping
  • Bowflex® Treadmill 10 – Free Mat + Free Shipping
  • SelectTech® 552 Dumbbells – Free Shipping
  • SelectTech® 552 Dumbbells – $25 Off + Free Shipping when you buy SelectTech® 552 Dumbbells, SelectTech® Dumbbell Stand, and a 5.1S Stowable Bench
  • Bowflex® 840 Kettlebell – Free Shipping

Where to Buy Bowflex

Bowflex Review

Customers can purchase their products by heading over to bowflex.com. You can also find them at select retailers such as:

  • Amazon 
  • Canadian Tire
  • Best Buy 
  • Walmart
  • Sport Chek
  • Dick’s Sporting Goods 

FAQ

Bowflex Review

Does Bowflex have a trial period?

In terms of their JRNY app, Bowflex does offer a free trial period. Keep in mind, this ultimately depends on the exercise machine in question. For instance, the C6 Bike comes with a complimentary 6-month trial. 

Does Bowflex have a lifetime warranty?

This Bowflex review found out that this depends on the exercise machine. For example, the Velocore Bike has a frames and parts warranty that covers up to 2 years. 

How much does it cost to ship a Bowflex?

Select Bowflex models come with free delivery, such as SelectTech 552 Dumbbells. Customers will be able to see the shipping costs for specific items during checkout. 

How long does it take to deliver a Bowflex?

For American & Canadian customers only, this brand provides an at-home assembly option for buyers to choose. In terms of delivery times, some orders may arrive late due to COVID-19. 

To help monitor the status of your package, customers will be given a tracking number within their confirmation email. Unfortunately, this Bowflex review found out that they do not offer international shipping.

Can I return my Bowflex?

Not happy with your Bowflex 552? The brand offers a 8-week window for customers to return their orders. Products must be intact and in original packaging in order to be considered eligible. Sadly, they do not cover any affiliated shipping costs. 

According to their policy, those who have signed up for a JRNY subscription plan cannot request a refund. But, this may vary in certain situations. To initiate the return process, and for more information, buyers must contact Bowflex’s customer service team. 

How to Contact Bowflex

For inquiries unrelated to this Bowflex review, you can contact the company through:

Customers can also get help by using the chat function on their website.


Article Sources

[1] Oja, P., Titze, S., Bauman, A., De Geus, B., Krenn, P., Reger‐Nash, B., & Kohlberger, T. Health benefits of cycling: a systematic review Wiley Online Library Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports, 21(4), 496-509
[3] Kozlovskaia, M., Vlahovich, N., Rathbone, E., Manzanero, S., Keogh, J., & Hughes, D. C. A profile of health, lifestyle and training habits of 4720 Australian recreational runners—The case for promoting running for health benefits Wiley Online Library Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 30(2), 172-179
[4] Schnohr, P., Kristensen, T. S., Prescott, E., & Scharling, H. Stress and life dissatisfaction are inversely associated with jogging and other types of physical activity in leisure time—The Copenhagen City Heart Study Wiley Online Library Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports, 15(2), 107-112
[5] O'Connor, P. J., Herring, M. P., & Caravalho, A. Mental Health Benefits of Strength Training in Adults SAGE Journals American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 4(5), 377-396
[6] Donne, B., & Egana, M. Physiological changes following a 12-week gym-based stair-climbing, elliptical trainer, and treadmill running program in females Journal of sports medicine and physical fitness, 44, 141-146
[7] Kaplan, Y., Barak, Y., Palmonovich, E., Nyska, M., & Witvrouw, E. Referent body weight values in over ground walking, over ground jogging, treadmill jogging, and elliptical exercise ScienceDirect Gait & posture, 39(1), 558-562
[8] Rogers, M. E., Sherwood, H. S., Rogers, N. L., & Bohlken, R. M. Effects of Dumbbell and Elastic Band Training on Physical Function in Older Inner-City African-American Women Taylor & Francis Online Women & health, 36(4), 33-41

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