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Best Les Mills Equipment

The best Les Mills equipment options include their SMARTBAR barbell weight system and SMARTSTEP cardio platform.

Equipment
7 min read2024-01-20T20:32:43.070Z

OVERVIEW

Les Mills is one of the oldest names in group fitness, and they've brought their studio experience to the world with their streaming fitness service, Les Mills+. They also offer two premium home equipment options with the SMARTBAR and SMARTSTEP platform to boost your at-home fitness, plus various equipment accessories.

Best Les Mills Equipment

Best for At-Home Workout Versatility: Les Mills SMARTBAR

Best for Aerobic Stepping Exercises: Les Mills SMARTSTEP Platform

Best for Les Mills Shapes Workouts: Les Mills SHAPES BUNDLE 2.0

Best for All Types of Recovery: Les Mills Recovery Equipment

Introduction to Les Mills

Les Mills was a four-time Olympian who opened the first Les Mills gym in Aukland, New Zealand, in 1968. Later, his son Philip transformed the brand by incorporating dance and step aerobics into the workout classes that are loved around the globe today.

Best Les Mills Equipment for Home

Les Mills offers two main equipment options: a weighted bar set and an aerobic step platform. Their equipment can be purchased individually or in fitness bundles for additional savings. They also offer other resistance options, such as bands and recovery tools, including a foam roller and massage balls.

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Individual Reviews
Starting at $449

Les Mills SMARTBAR

Best for at-home workout versatility

  • 2.2lb weight plates (x2)
  • 5.5lb weight plates (x2)
  • 11lb weight plates (x2)

The most popular Les Mills equipment option is their SMARTBAR weight system. This bar weighs 7 pounds and is meant to be used in the high-energy and cardio-focused group fitness classes, which the brand is famous for.

Purchase of the SMARTBAR bundle comes with a free 12-month membership to the Les Mills+ fitness app subscription.

You can purchase the bar by itself, and the bar plus their starting weight bundle costs $598. This includes the bar, two 2.2-pound plates, two 5.5-pound plates, and two 11-pound plates– great for beginners just starting to seriously strength train.

What makes the SMARTBAR unique and better than many other barbell systems for group classes is its gator claw loading system. Instead of struggling to slide clips and plates on and off (which can kill the buzz of a high-energy class), you simply slide your plate on, and the bar grips it using an internal grasping mechanism.

Because it’s quick and easy to change the plates, this is ideal for use during workout classes with the Les Mills app.

The individual weight plates are designed to be added to the barbell or used as free weights, which is a neat feature.

Les Mills SMARTBAR Pros
  • Quick change feature
  • Sleek design
  • Easy grab weight plates
  • Highly portable
  • 3-year warranty
Les Mills SMARTBAR Cons
  • Not intended for experienced weightlifters
Starting at $199

Les Mills SMARTSTEP Platform

Best for aerobic stepping exercises

  • Includes 1x platform and 4x red risers.
  • Proven in world-leading gyms
  • Secure riser locking system

The platform is a classic piece of equipment popularized by the step aerobics classes of the 1970s and 1980s. Unfortunately, many affordable step platforms are not secured, and the platform simply rests on the risers– but Les Mills has solved this problem

Many platforms offer unstable surfaces and can be unsafe. As a personal trainer, I've witnessed many people stumble and even get injured by them. Les Mills solved this problem by creating a lock-down system for the platform that requires the risers to be screwed into the platform.

The platform features rubber feet and a rubber coating on top for maximum grip and additional safety. Best of all, the SMARTSTEP has a 2-year warranty, which is rare for plastic exercise equipment.

This piece of equipment offers value and quality for anyone looking to spice up their fitness class routine.

Les Mills SMARTSTEP Pros
  • Lock-down system
  • Non-slip rubber grip
  • Four risers included
  • 2-year warranty
Les Mills SMARTSTEP Cons
  • Additional risers cost extra
Starting at $49

Les Mills SHAPES BUNDLE 2.0

Best for Les Mills Shapes workouts

  • 1x set of sculpt bands (Light, Medium, Heavy)
  • 1x set of bamboo sliders

A favorite of home exercisers and frequent travelers, exercise bands and loops are a great way to add resistance with minimal equipment and space.

The SHAPES bands even come with a 30-day risk free trial, which is uncommon in this exercise category, so you know Les Mills stands by its quality.

While this is more expensive than other resistance bands, the fabric construction of the mini bands is fantastic and resists rolling like more affordable rubber options.

Les Mills SHAPES Bundle Pros
  • Quality construction
  • Non-slip fabric
  • Versatile
  • Highly portable
Les Mills SHAPES Bundle Cons
  • Expensive vs. off-brand options
Starting at $19.99

Les Mills Recovery Equipment

Best for all types of recovery

Les Mills rounds out their equipment with a foam roller and massage ball set. Both items are a fantastic addition for anyone who loves high-intensity exercise but struggles with muscle soreness afterward.

Like the rest of their equipment line, this foam roller and massage ball set are priced much higher than their competitors. The main value you’re gettins is using the equipment that’s recommended in the Les Mills app workouts.

Les Mills Recovery Pros
  • Quality construction
  • Luxurious feel
Les Mills Recovery Cons
  • Expensive compared to other options on the market

Comparing Les Mills Exercise Equipment

Les Mills Equipment PriceBest ForShippingWarranty
SMARTBAR Set$598Cardio or strength classesFree over $4003 years
SMARTSTEP$199Cardio or light strength classesBased on weight2 years
Sculpt Bands (3)$39Cardio or light strength classes$10None
SMARTBAND (1)$49Cardio or light strength classes$101 year
Foam Roller$59Recovery work$20None
Massage Ball (2)$29Recovery work$10None

Factors to Consider When Choosing Equipment for Home Workouts

Your Unique Fitness Goals

A crucial question to ask yourself: What is my primary fitness goal?

The answer to that question will guide you on which equipment pieces are necessary and which are a luxury.

Remember that we all need cardio and resistance training exercise to be healthy, and there are many ways to fit both training styles into your life. Try different workout types and find what works best for you.

Space Limitations

Most people are limited on workout space, so ensure you measure your designated area before purchasing exercise equipment. Check to see if your equipment comes with storage options or if they are available for purchase–especially if your workout area is dual-purpose.

Equipment Quality

We all have different expectations when it comes to equipment quality. For me, my expectations go up as the price does. I don't expect a $6 exercise loop to have a lifetime warranty, but if I spend $500 on a weight bench, I expect it to hold up for at least five to ten years. Sometimes, quality can be evident just by feeling the product. Other times, you must research to see what materials are industry standard and how people have rated it.

Warranty

Whenever you make a purchase, you must know if the item has a warranty and its details. I don't know about you, but if I'm spending big bucks, I want to know that the company in question stands behind its products, and they do that with a warranty.

Read the warranty details keenly and note any disqualifiers so you can maintain the warranty agreement.

Integrating Les Mills Equipment with the Les Mills+ App

None of the equipment Les Mills sells uses smart technology, so integrating it into your workouts couldn't be easier. Each workout will tell you what equipment it requires as well as alternatives, so you can effortlessly search and find the best classes for your goals.

If you're new to exercise, Les Mills offers plenty of high-quality instructional videos that have form demonstrations for you to reference.

The SMARTBAR, in particular, is perfectly designed for the quick changes necessary to keep up with a group fitness class. You can grab and load plates easily without skipping a beat or getting behind your instructor.

Avoid These Common Mistakes When Purchasing Les Mills Equipment for Home Workouts

Buying exercise equipment can feel daunting and overwhelming. With endless options available, how do you know which is best for you?

Here are some quick tips for avoiding common mistakes real customers have made when purchasing Les Mills equipment.

Evaluate how much you plan on using the equipment.

If you plan on using the SMARTBAR for multiple workouts throughout the week, the price tag may be worth it. But if you hate lifting weights and know it will collect dust in the corner, maybe skip this purchase.

Supplement As Needed.

Les Mills+ workouts are great for cardio and very beginner strength training.

Because the weights are relatively light, if you plan on getting all your workouts done at home, you may want to invest in a few heavy kettlebells or dumbbells, so you can gradually challenge your body appropriately.

Remember, it's not required.

Most importantly, you can enjoy workouts on the Les Mills+ app without purchasing any of their equipment options. Plenty of workouts do not require equipment, and for the classes that do, you can use equipment from any brand.

Bottom Line

Les Mills offers a limited selection of high-quality fitness equipment, including the SMARTBAR weight set and the SMARTSTEP aerobic step. The SMARTBAR features a light, 7-pound bar and a design that makes it quick and easy to change weights– perfect for Les Mills+ app classes.

The SMARTSTEP has a secure locking design, so the risers attach directly to the platform, and you stay safe while jumping on and around it.

To learn more about making the most of your Les Mills equipment, check out the Les Mills+ app.

Les Mills Equipment FAQs

What makes Les Mills equipment different from other fitness equipment types?

Les Mills equipment is specifically designed to be used with their high-energy group fitness-inspired exercise classes.

Whether you're taking a class in a gym or streaming from home, their barbell features a quick-change gator claw mechanism, which makes weight changes mid-workout a breeze. Unlike traditional barbells with tedious clips and weight plates you have to slide on and off, the SMARTBAR allows you to clip your weight in quickly and get back to work.

The Les Mills SMARTSTEP platform is equally well-made for fast-paced group fitness. Unlike many aerobics step platforms whose benches don't attach to the risers and can be very unsafe, Les Mills solved this problem by screwing their risers directly into the bench for safety.

Do I have to buy Les Mills equipment to use the Les Mills+ app?

You don't have to buy equipment to use the Les Mills+ fitness app, though your workout options will be limited to primarily cardio and bodyweight classes, which may not be ideal for every fitness goal.

What workouts can I use Les Mills equipment with on the app?

Les Mill workouts use patented names that take some time to decipher, such as BODYPUMP, BODYCOMBAT, and GRIT Strength, but their class catalog has over 1,000 workouts, including the following training styles:

  • Strength training
  • HIIT
  • Cardio
  • Bodyweight
  • Core training
  • Yoga
  • Dance
  • Step aerobics
  • Shadowboxing

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