Whether you’re someone who likes to keep up with the latest in fitness tech or you’re new to fitness and want to have the best experience possible, connected weights are for you.

In this article, we’ll explore what connected weights are, how they’re different from free weights, what the benefits of using connected weights are, how to test them, and how to take care of them.

Let’s get connected.

What Are Connected Weights?

Connected weights (also referred to as smart weights or digital weights) are weights that connect to your smart fitness device using Bluetooth technology. These are commonly found in the form of dumbbells (called connected dumbbells) and ankle weights (called connected ankle weights). 

They’re equipped with advanced sensors that create a network to track your movements, count your reps, and provide real-time tips and recommendations to help you improve your workouts.

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Connected Weights vs. Regular Free Weights

While both types of weights are beneficial for strength training exercises to build muscle mass and reduce body fat, connected weights, and regular free weights have many differences. The most obvious is that connected weights have Bluetooth capabilities while regular free weights do not. The Bluetooth technology allows for real-time tracking of weight lifted, reps performed, and other relevant fitness data. This data is then synced to a smart fitness device, where users can monitor their progress and adjust their workouts accordingly. 

On the other hand, regular free weights don’t come with the technology and tracking features of connected weights. While they don't provide the same level of tracking and monitoring as connected weights, they’re slightly more durable and affordable.

Top Benefits of Connected Weights

1. Real-time and historical workout data

If you love personalized workout data to keep yourself motivated, connected weights might be your new best friend. Instead of keeping track of your workouts manually, your connected weights automatically record your workout metrics. 

Everything from your reps and sets in a strength training class to the number of pulses in a barre class can be tracked. You get a digital record of your workout that automatically logs your lifting sessions (including warm-up sets).

This enhances your workout because it lets you focus on the movement and the muscles being used instead of counting how many reps and sets you’ve done.

2. Make weight recommendations

Because your weights are connected to smart workouts, they can tell what exercises are more difficult for you and which are easier. Based on the data they collect from your personal profile and digital workout logs, they can make weight recommendations as to what weights would be best for the type of workout you’ve selected. 

So, when the instructor on your smart fitness device tells you to grab “a pair of medium and heavy weights” for the workout, the data from the connected weights can make personalized recommendations as to which are best suited for you.

3. Provide personalized tips & feedback

Since digital weights use sensing technology, they can detect your movements and provide form feedback to help you improve your technique. It’s the next best thing to having a virtual one-on-one training session with a personal trainer. Both situations will provide you with tips to improve your form, which is essential for maximizing your workouts and minimizing the risk of injury.

During and after your workout, your connected weights will provide personalized feedback on your performance. This feedback helps challenge you to level up your fitness output—in a way that’s backed by your own personal fitness data.

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Are Connected Weights Right for Me?

Here’s how to tell if connected weights are the right fit for your home gym:

  • If you're new to fitness and want an easy experience. With connected weights, your device gives you detailed and personalized instructions, helps you keep track of your workout routine, and helps keep you motivated.
  • If you love fitness data and stats and want to be able to keep track of everything automatically without writing everything down the old-school way.
  • If you don't have access to a personal trainer and want form feedback to make sure you’re getting the most out of your workout and with the best technique.
  • If you want to make sure you're challenging yourself and progressing in your fitness routine by selecting the right weights for your  workouts.

Test Your Connected Weights

Bluetooth can be a bit finicky to set up sometimes, but if you do everything in the right order and troubleshoot when necessary, your connected devices will work smoothly and pair properly with your smart fitness device.

Here are some of our top tips:

  • Remove the battery activation strip. Every connected weight will have a battery activation strip. This prevents the devices from being turned on or activated during the shipping process or before you’re ready to use them.
  • Use the right type of batteries. Make sure you put the right type of batteries in your connected devices or they may not function properly. Dumbbells often use AA batteries while ankle weights usually take CR2032 batteries.
  • Pick up the weights to activate. Since connected weights have sensor tracking, they’ll activate once picked up off the ground. An indicator light will come on indicating that the weight is powered on and ready to pair. 
  • Check for updates and update whenever they become available. Make sure your connected device is updated the latest version. 

If your connected weights aren’t pairing properly or turning on after going through these troubleshooting steps, reach out to tech support for additional assistance. (Don’t forget to turn them on and off first to see if that works.)

How to Care For Your Connected Weights

If you take care of your connected weights, they’ll take care of you. Here’s some basic cleaning, storage, usage, and maintenance information you should know for your connected weights.

  • Cleaning: Care Kits are available for connected weights that are sweatproof (like the ones you’ll find in the lululemon Studio accessories store). They include a spray bottle of cleaning solution and a cleaning cloth to clean your dumbbells and ankle weights.
  • Storage: Store your connected weights between 30 degrees Fahrenheit and 110 degrees Fahrenheit. This will ensure they’re stored at the optimal temperature to avoid any damage.
  • Usage: Smart weights can be used outside but should be kept out of direct sunlight, rain, and snow. Despite being sweatproof, they’re not rated for full submersion in water or intended to be used in the rain.
  • Durability: If you’ve lifted weights before, you know how satisfying it can be to drop them after a challenging set. Connected weights like lululemon Studio’s smart dumbbells are durable enough for multiple drops from three feet off the floor. That being said, you should treat your connected weights with as much care as possible to ensure they last for years to come.
  • Tech support: Good customer service is important when it comes to connected weights. lululemon Studio offers phone and email tech support for our connected devices.
  • Warranty: Most connected weights will come with some form of warranty. lululemon Studio weights come with a 12-month warranty as well as specialized repair partners are available should they need fixing.

Connected Dumbbells vs. Connected Ankle Weights

Both connected dumbbells and connected ankle weights are ideal for any home gym setup. Here are some of their individual benefits:

Connected dumbbells: 

  • Adds a challenge to both upper-body and lower-body resistance training
  • Heavier weight options for more resistance while lifting weights
  • More versatile and can be used to perform almost any strength training exercise

Connected ankle weights:

  • Great way to add an extra level of resistance to certain lower body exercises
  • Helps you build more muscle during aerobic exercise and burn more calories (e.g. when worn while walking) 
  • Can also be worn on your wrists

Get Connected with lululemon Studio

lululemon Studio connected weights can be used in many of our class types including Strength, Cardio + Strength, Boxing, Pilates, Sculpt, and Barre. Our dumbbells range from one pound to 25 pounds and the ankle weights are available in one or two-pound sets.

Pairing your connected weights is seamless with lululemon Studio’s Mirror, making your workout the most accurate, data-driven, and motivating it can be.