There is a smart home device for many things. Are you not very confident with your cooking? A smart oven will ensure your meals are neither overcooked nor undercooked. Do you often forget to restock your fridge? A smart refrigerator will monitor its contents. That lets you know if you are short on something or if some items have expired. Then, simple solutions like smart lights, thermostats, and speakers offer you lots of conveniences.
Aside from those, there are smart home devices that give you health benefits. For example, smart beds improve the quality of your sleep. Smart scales measure not only your weight; they track body fat percentage, muscle mass, and bone mass. In turn, they give more details about your health. And then there are smart dumbbells for physical fitness.
The issue is smart home devices are not cheap. And if you buy more than one device, the costs could add up even if you choose the affordable options. Therefore, you need to consider which items to buy for your smart home.
Of course, smart security systems and home protection should be your priority. Then comes devices that offer convenience and comfort. Still, you want to save some money. So not buying smart devices that you can live without is a good idea.
That said, should you buy smart dumbbells? Let’s scrutinize the tech to find out.
What are Smart Dumbbells?
Smart dumbbells are voice-controlled fitness equipment. You can use voice assistants to adjust their weights instead of doing it yourself. Also, they offer you different presets for different dumbbell moves.
Why would you want that? It all boils down to speed things up. Suppose you are following a fitness app’s training class. They only give you 10 – 30 seconds between sets.
If you use “actually dumb” adjustable dumbbells, you have to use a pin mechanism to attach or detach additional plates. So you have to rush doing that in the short 10 – 30-second timeframe. That could lead to a plate or two falling mid-exercise. And that is not just hypothetical; it actually happens.
The Verge writer Victoria Song confirms that. Instead of hitting pause, she rushed while tweaking her adjustable dumbbells. As a result, a five-pound plate smacked her in the face during a chest press.
Aside from that, you need to return the dumbbells to the rack every time to add or remove plates. That’s very inconvenient.
Smart dumbbells solve those problems. They allow you to adjust the weight instantly. It is also safer because no parts will fall on your face.
Cost of Smart Dumbbells
You can get the cheaper end of connected fitness equipment at $429. The NordicTrack smart dumbbell is an example. That is admittedly still a hefty investment for the average person. Furthermore, dumbbell prices are getting higher due to the pandemic causing shortages and shipping delays.
Adjustable dumbbells with a similar weight range can cost around $200 to over $500. And a full dumbbell rack can cost a few hundred or even thousands of dollars. Since it is a rack, it may also take more space in your home than you would like.
At least with a smart dumbbell, your only concern is getting a Google Assistant or Alexa-enabled device to use the voice controls.
Smart home fitness has exploded in the past several years. That gave rise to many startups bringing connected strength training into the home. One of the newly risen startups is Kabata, whose main product is its smart dumbbell and the app connected to it.
Kabata has announced a $2 million round featuring many names from the sports and VC worlds. That includes professional soccer player Daniel Sturridge and Golden State Warriors Assistant General Manager Kirk Lacob. Ari Litan (Former CPO, The Athletic), Jordan Nathan (Founder & CEO, Caraway Home), and many others are also on the list.
The Los Angeles startup’s product is currently in pilot. And they haven’t given a specific release date yet.
Kabata says it’s targeting both home users and gyms as it figures out the right pricing model.
The firm’s co-founder and CEO, Kareem Aly, says that the first dumbbell patent was published in 1928. And now, almost a century later, the category has experienced a severe lack of innovation. Aly declares that it is the time for that to change.
How Kabata’s System Works
Kabata’s system is powered by future-facing AI and data analytics. Its weights analyze your real-time metrics and preferences. Using the data it gathers, it curates strength training routines for your body. The dumbbells also auto adjust, rumble, and pulse to guide your tempo and enhance your form.
You can receive detailed metrics and track your strength training journey through the app.
Mobile connectivity also brings instantaneous performance metrics on your reps, volume, velocity, time under tension, power, etc.
Again, the selling point of smart dumbbells is their ability to change weight with unmatched speed. To change the Kabata smart dumbbell, you can use the stand-alone base dial, predictive Lightning Mode, or the Kabata App.
The Lightning Mode uses predictive AI to auto-adjust the weight between sets for your most effective next movement.
Unfortunately, there’s no mention of voice control support. Nevertheless, using the stand-alone dial or app is still faster than adding and removing plates.
Kabata’s system utilizes the connected app to create a six-week workout featuring self-guided and trainer sessions. And it’s able to continue customizing the user experience using the collected data. Thus, it creates the most effective workout possible to meet your goals.
That said, smart dumbbells can improve your physique. And as you become healthier, you put yourself further away from sickness and danger. That can save you money because you don’t need to pay for medical bills.
And so, if you have extra money, consider buying smart dumbbells. It is a better investment than regular dumbbells, which are inconvenient and could take lots of space at home.
If you can wait for Kabata’s release, wait for it. But if you want a smart dumbbell now, you can check Nordictrack smart dumbbells, which have Alexa integration.