How much does a flat bench cost

How Much Does A Flat Bench Cost? What You Need To Know Before Buying One For Your Home Gym!

With so many flat weight benches online to choose from, how do you know how much to pay as a beginner?! Don’t worry I got you covered. Because today, I’m taking an in-depth look at the cost of a flat bench.

On average, a brand new flat bench should cost between $40-300. Budget flat benches cost $40-50, budget flat benches cost $70-150, and premium flat benches cost $160-300+. Different price points will affect the build quality, materials, and comfort of the flat bench.

I vividly remember the nightmare that’s the home gym equipment market.

There’s so much friggin’ variety to choose from.

That’s why I want to share my research and experience on what you should be paying for a gym bench, whether or not it’s worth it, and if it’s suitable for your home gym.

Let’s crack on.

Products Mentioend In This Post

If you’re interested, these are the best-value-for-money weight benches from my experience. I’ve also shared my favorite dumbbells to go with the recommended benches.

How Much A Flat Bench Costs

In this section, I’ll explain the cost of a flat bench, whether to buy new or used, and things to look for when buying a gym bench in general.

Average flat bench costs.

Flat benches can be broadly categorized into 3 price buckets- premium, mid-range, and budget.

Each bucket has a distinct price range and suitability for different training levels.

Here’s the average cost of a flat weight bench in each category:

Flat Bench CategoryAverage Brand New CostAverage Used CostAverage DepreciationAverage Weight Capacity
Premium$160-300$100-18020-40%1000lbs+
Mid-range$70-150$20-4050-75%700lbs
Budget$40-50$5-1080-90%350lbs
Cost of flat benches at different price points.
  • Budget flat benches such as those made by Weider, can be found for under $50 and will usually provide around 350-lbs of weight capacity. These are mainly made for absolute beginners to begin bench pressing at home.
  • Mid-range flat benches such as those made by CAP, Marcy, and Addidas, can be bought for under $150 and will usually provide up to 700-lbs of weight capacity. These are great if you’re currently a beginner to intermediate, but also intend to significantly increase the weight of your bench press.
  • Premium flat benches such as those made by Rogue and REP, cost over $150 and can provide over 1000-lbs of weight capacity. These are ideal if you’re powerlifting at home.

Please note that the prices mentioned so far are for a brand new flat bench at the time of writing.

How much should a used flat bench cost?

How much does a used flat weight bench cost?

Not everyone has the budget to buy all their equipment brand new.

So I researched eBay, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and Mercari to find out the average cost of a used flat bench.

On average, a used flat bench will cost 10-80% of the brand new price. This means the average cost of a used flat bench is between $5-180. High-quality bench brands will often depreciate less than low-quality bench brands.

The important point to take home is that expensive benches tend to hold their value better.

“We do not recommend buying a cheap weight bench and compromise on the quality, but make sure you do not end up paying a lot for a good one either.”

Muscle Maxim

Generally speaking, I would always go for mid-range or above.

Budget benches just aren’t worth the time in my opinion (I’d rather spend the extra 50 bucks for a mid-range bench).

This is especially true if you’re buying a flat bench intending to upgrade in the future.

Since a high-quality flat bench keeps its price better, it also means you can recoup the cost more efficiently.

A word of caution about buying a used vs new flat bench.

Should you get a used weight bench?

The most obvious (and only) reason you should buy a used flat bench is for the low cost.

After all, buying a flat bench with 90% savings seems like an absolute bargain right?!

Not so quick.

Here are 3 reasons why buying a used flat bench may be a bad idea:

  1. Comfort is reduced. All weight benches are susceptible to deterioration over time, especially budget benches. And the upholstery/stitching is likely to be the first point of weakness. Not only is damaged upholstery unsightly, but it can also cause the underneath foam padding to warp. This can make the bench uncomfortable to lay on, lead to a bad user experience, and will only get worse with time.
  1. Frame integrity may be compromised. A greater concern regarding deterioration is damage to the steel frame. The frame can be compromised by constant knocks and weathering. And this can cause it to rust and/or lose tensile strength over time. Again, this is not only unsightly but it can also affect the function of your flat bench.
  1. A compromised frame is dangerous. A damaged frame will have a significantly reduced weight capacity. And there’s no way for you to be able to tell how many pounds a heavily used flat bench can take. Additionally, the seller may not be 100% truthful in the condition of the bench. And having a bench buckle or collapse half way through a heavy bench press is every weight lifter’s worst nightmare!

Take home message?

The cost to buy a brand new flat bench is worth it for your safety’s sake as well as for future resale purposes!

Why is a flat bench so expensive?

What affects the cost of a flat bench?

Now that you know how much a flat bench should cost, you may be thinking:

“Why are flat benches so expensive?!”

In general, flat benches are expensive due to their design process and construction materials. They need to be designed by experts and also be constructed from high-quality steel and upholstery. This ensures that the bench can handle a high weight capacity and be comfortable for the user.

Here’s what you pay for on a flat bench:

  • Frame materials. The majority of modern benches are made from commerical-grade steel. Premium flat benches feature a heavy-gauge steel frame (11 to 7 gauge) whilst budget flat benches feature a lighter-gauge steel frame (14 to 16 gauge). Flat benches made with heavier gauge steel have a greater weight capacity but will also cost more.
  • Padding materials. Every flat bench has padding to go on top of the frame. Premium benches feature urethane-coated high-density foam padding whilst budget benches feature faux leather-coated low-density foam padding. The premium padding will last much longer and also be more comfortable for the user.
  • Design features. Don’t underestimate the simple-looking nature of a flat bench. There’s a lot that goes into the design and features. For example, manufacturers need to consider seat height, foot wheels, footrests, and foot grips. These all increase the functionality of a flat bench and will also increase the cost.
  • Weight and stability. Design and materials both contribute to the final weight of the flat bench. Premium benches can be as heavy as 50-lbs whilst budget benches can be as light as 25-lbs. Generally speaking, a heavier flat bench will be more stable but also cost more.

Flat benches are cheap compared to other home gym equipment!

A home gym is generally an expensive (but worthwhile) investment.

But did you know that a flat bench is one the cheapest pieces of home gym equipment you can buy?

Here’s a cost comparison between a flat bench and other popular home gym equipment:

Home Gym EquipmentAverage Brand New CostAverage Used Cost
Resistance bands$40$5
Pull-up bar$50$10
Flat bench$100$50
Adjustable bench$130$70
Kettlebell set$300$150
Selectorized dumbbells$400$200
Barbell rack/power cage$500$300
Barbell and weight plates$1000$600
Cost of a flat bench compared to other home gym equipment.

So you can see that in the grand scheme of things, a flat bench is relatively cheap compared to the other bits of home gym equipment.

And when you consider that a home setup as simple as a bench and dumbbells can be enough to significantly improve your physique without having to pay for gym fees (which can easily be over $500 per year), the costs don’t seem so bad!

A bench and dumbbell is an affordable and space-effective way for beginners to gain at least 20-lbs of muscle at home. Check out my other article to find out how much dumbbells should cost!

Price differences between different brands of flat bench.

Now here are some examples of good flat bench brands in the US and UK and how much you can expect to pay:

Good Flat Weight Bench Brand (US)Expected CostGood Flat Weight Bench Brand (UK)Expected Cost
Rogue Fitness (ultra-premium)$190-300Rogue Fitness (ultra-premium)£190-270
REP Fitness (premium)$150-240Mirafit (mid-range to premium)£60-180
CAP (mid-range)$70-90Addidas (mid-range)£70-90
Marcy (mid-range)$80-190Marcy (mid-range)£80
Weider (budget)$50DTX Fitness (budget)£50
Best flat bench brands.

Having personally tested more than 20 benches myself, these are the brands I would recommend at different price points.

If you have the budget, then go for a premium flat bench.

The Flybird is a good-value flat bench that can also incline and decline.

But if you’re watching the pennies, then a mid-range flat bench like the Flybird (link for my review) is great for beginners and intermediate. The Flybird can also be adjusted for incline and decline angles. You can get it delivered cheaply from Amazon.

Finally, I would always opt to spend the extra few bucks to go for a mid-range bench rather than choose a budget bench (for the reasons described previously).

Is A Flat Weight Bench Worth It?

If you’re currently considering purchasing a flat bench, then you’re probably wondering if it’s worth the money.

In general, a flat bench is worth the money for those who regularly train the chest. A flat bench allows the user to safely perform exercises such as the bench press, chest fly, and dumbbell pullover, using heavy dumbbells and barbells.

Not only is a flat bench relatively cheap (as explained above), but it will also maximize your training return on investment (ROI).

A flat bench is a cheap way to increase training ROI.

7 Exercises You Can Do With Just Dumbbells and a Bench
Just some of the exercises you can do with a flat bench.

Here are some of my favorite exercises that require a flat bench:

  • Barbell flat bench press.
  • Dumbbell flat bench press.
  • Chest fly.
  • Dumbbell pullover.
  • Single-arm row.
  • Elevated hip-thrust.
  • Box-squat.
  • Split squat.

Without a bench, most of these movements cannot be performed safely using heavy poundages.

Additionally, a bench also allows you to lift heavier weights on some of the exercises such as the bench press and chest fly.

As an example, here’s a weight comparison between the flat barbell bench press vs barbell floor press:

BodyweightBench Press With Bench 1RMBench Press Without Bench (1RM)Weight Decrease (%)
120lbs61lbs42lbs31%
150lbs90lbs69lbs23%
200lbs136lbs113lbs17%
250lbs178lbs155lbs13%
Beginner barbell press estimations based on Strength Level’s Standards.

Note: 1RM means “1 rep max” which refers to the maximum amount of weight you can lift in one go.

As you can see, having a flat bench will allow you to barbell press heavier poundages.

This is because a bench provides a more stable lifting position and it’s also easier to set up the starting position.

Furthermore, a weight bench allows your elbows to drop beneath the torso and this increases your range of motion.

Combined, these factors allow you to lift more weight and build more muscle and strength.

Therefore a flat bench can be well worth it as a cheap way to maximize your training ROI.

A flat bench can last a lifetime.

Flat benches are great value for money.

Not only does a flat bench increase training ROI, but it will also last you a long time.

On average, a flat weight bench will last at least 20 years of heavy use. A premium flat bench is extremely durable and will often last a lifetime. But budget benches are less durable and may last less than 20 years.

And when you consider that many flat benches can retain at around 50% (and more) of their original value, it makes them a great investment.

Imagine getting your money’s worth from a flat bench with over 20 years of use, and then still being able to recoup half of the money you originally paid for it!

The other contender..

Flat vs adjustable bench value for money.

Now, a flat bench may be great value for money.

But what if I were to tell you that there’s an even better option?

Well, there is.

An adjustable bench.

These can cost as little as 20 bucks more than a flat bench but opens up an even greater variety of exercises for you to do at home.

I use and recommend the Flybird FB149 (you can find the cheapest price here).

It doesn’t have the same build quality as a commercial gym bench.

But it’s affordable, comfortable, and allows you to train the entire body at home without having to fork out hundreds of dollars.

Are adjustable benches worth it?

In general, adjustable benches are worth the money. They can be bought for as little as $80 and are a cost-effective way to add incline and decline functions to chest workouts. This makes them great to target different regions of the chest at home.

Pros and cons of flat vs adjustable bench

But before you make a rash decision to forget about the flat bench and opt for an adjustable one instead, here’s an important point to consider:

“The flat bench weight capacity is superior to an adjustable bench.”

Coop, Garage Gym Reviews

For any given price range, you can expect an adjustable bench to hold ~75% less weight compared to a flat bench.

This isn’t an issue for most people who simply want to improve their physiques.

But if you’re a powerlifter (or aspiring to be one), a sturdy flat bench is more suitable because you need to shift extremely heavy weights.

For everyone else, the small additional cost is worth it to upgrade from a flat bench to an adjustable bench.

You can find out how an adjustable bench works in my Flybird bench users guide!

Alternatives To Buying A Weight Bench

Flat bench alternative.

If you’re a beginner lifter, then you may still be unconvinced about the cost of a home gym bench.

After all, you don’t know what you’re missing if you’ve never used it in the first place right?

And that’s fine.

So here are some cost-free gym bench alternatives you can use at home:

  • Floor. There’s nothing wrong with using the floor for the early stages of training. The floor press and floor fly can be used to safely train the pectorals without a bench. But a bench is essential to maximise chest gains as you become stronger.
  • Piano bench. This is a safe and sturdy alternative to a flat weight bench. Bench pressing at lower weights is fine. But once you begin to exceed a 100-lb bench press, you’ll want to upgrade to a proper bench (for safety’s sake).
  • Exercise ball. These can be used as an incline or flat bench alternative. But it’s very unstable. This is great for engaging the core, but it also means you won’t be able to lift heavy weights.
  • Stack of towels. You can either lay flat or at an incline. I love this method as a beginner. It’s safe and comfortable. But once you’re training seriously, this method can be slow and tedious to set up.
  • Sack of sand or rice. This can also be used as a great flat or incline bench alternative. But not every household has a sack of sand or rice available..

The great thing about these methods is that they’re cheap to use and will get you through the beginner stages of training.

They’re also great for casual lifters.

But if you’re at all serious about building a killer chest, then I would highly recommend you invest in a proper weight bench.

Check out my other article for even more gym bench alternatives you can use at home!

My Weight Bench Recommendations

Having researched dozens of models, I chose the Flybird FB149 (click here to see the reviews).

Use a bench with dumbbells to build chest muscle

It comes at a very reasonable price and has all the functions you’d need from a beginner/intermediate weight bench. It’s comfortable, stable, and can be folded and stowed away after a workout.

The 700lb capacity is also great for dumbbell training at all levels and suitable for moderately heavy barbell loads.

If you’re below 5’7″ or above 6’0″ then the Fitness Reality bench (click here for the reviews) has more comfortable dimensions for you. The seat height is lower (for shorter people) and the backrest is longer (for tall people).

Conclusion

I’ve given you a comprehensive look at the cost of a flat gym bench.

You’re looking to spend anywhere between $40-300 for a brand new flat weight bench, depending on brand, model, and build quality.

A used flat bench can be found for 10-80% of the brand new price.

The amount you spend should be influenced by your training level, needs, and budget (a mid-range bench is more than enough for a beginner).

And if you are going to buy a flat bench, I would recommend considering an adjustable bench instead.

I would also highly advise against anything lower than a mid-range bench.

Will you be buying a flat bench?

Let me know in the comments!

You may also be interested in the downloadable Kalibre Blueprint PDF which details exactly how I gained 40lbs of lean muscle (it’s 100% free!). It details the exact exercises and nutrition I used to go from skinny to ripped!

Thanks for reading guys!

Peace Out,

Kal

(Biochemistry BSc, Biomedical Sciences MSc, Ex-Skinny Guy)

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