Bowflex Ultimate 2 – The Ultimate Home Fitness Machine

It’s the beginning of another new year and you’re making another resolution to lose a little weight or get yourself back into fighting form. If you’re like me you’ve made that resolution many years in a row now. About five years ago I actually stuck with it and lost around thirty pounds. I felt great. But work got hectic, kids were busy with school and I got lazy. So here I am making another resolution to lose some weight. This year I really hope to make the change and stick with it.

Bowflex HVT

How am I going to do it? I’ve got my wife to agree to take on the challenge with me, and I’ve purchased a Bowflex Ultimate 2. Why did I choose the Bowflex Ultimate 2 and not another model Bowflex? It’s got 95 exercises available. The most available on the Bowflex traditional home gym models. I’ve only used it a few times so far, but I can tell you I am very impressed. Previously I had a much older universal gym that offered about 35 exercises. Not nearly enough variety to keep me interested for long. It was also prone to weights sticking and pieces coming loose constantly.

Is the Bowflex Ultimate 2 the right home gym for you? Let me explain some of the features I like so far.


  • As I mentioned above it’s got 95 exercises available. You won’t get bored with repetition of exercises. You’ll be able to work out every muscle group on your body.
  • Standard weight is 310 pounds, but it’s easily upgradeable to 410 pounds for those that really want to push themselves.
  • The Bowflex Ultimate 2 has a horizontal bench that can fold up into the machine, which means less space is taken up when you’re not using the gym.
  • A leg press is available as an option. Without the leg press option you can still work out your legs with the squat option. But for those that have trouble doing squats, the leg press is a nice addition.
  • You can get some aerobic exercising in with the included rowing machine. The rowing maching is nice for warming up before or cooling down after your workout. Or if you want to add it as part of your aerobic workout days it’s perfect.
  • Available preacher curl attachment for isolating and quickly developing your biceps. You can’t cheat with the Bowflex Ultimate 2 when using the preacher curl attachment. Your arms rest against a pad and you can’t move your elbows to make the curls easier.
  • A squat station. Squats are the “Grand Daddy” of exercises. They use so much of the body it makes them the most taxing of all exercises. The problem with squats on other exercise equipment is balance and control. On the Bowflex Ultimate 2 your body is basically forced into the correct position, thereby allowing you to get the absolute most out of this great exercise.
  • No cable changes with the Bowflex Ultimate 2. At first I thought this wasn’t so important. But after using my Bowflex Ultimate 2 just these few times I realized how nice it is not having to change cables. With other Bowflex exercise machines you have to change a cable to work out different parts of your body. Maybe this isn’t really important to you, but I certainly recommend it based on my own experience thus far.


There are a couple things I don’t like about the Bowflex Ultimate 2. Actually “don’t like” is harsh. They are more like minor annoyances and they don’t even really apply to me. But they might apply to someone else, therefore I’ll mention them.


  • Some exercises require attachments. Like the preacher curl and the leg press. It’s just extra equipment you have laying around.
  • The Bowflex Ultimate 2 is a little bigger than other Bowflex gyms. So if your space is really limited you might want to make sure this is going to fit. I have it in my basement and there’s plenty of room available.


Is the Bowflex Ultimate 2 the right gym for you? Only you can know that. Certainly you could go with a lesser model Bowflex or even a cheaper knock-off of a Bowflex. But keep one thing in mind. It can be hard staying motivated when you’re working out. You need to give yourself the best chance at staying committed to a workout regimen. That’s not going to happen with a low end, cheap piece of workout equipment. Get yourself the Bowflex Ultimate 2 and give yourself the best chance possible to get in shape and stick to that New Year’s resolution!

Bill has worked as a support engineer in the AIDC industry for more than 10 years. He is an avid reader, blogger and self-taught guitar player. His blog at

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