When it comes to bodyweight training, no single piece of equipment is as helpful as a power tower. The best power towers give you a versatile fitness station that you can use for dips, pushups, pullups, and all sorts of other exercises. They’re rugged, simple, and as challenging as you can make them.
However, many power towers being sold today aren’t worthy of the name. They’re often unsafe, with shoddy construction that always feels on the verge of collapse. Many are badly-designed with poor ergonomics that discourage proper form and muscle engagement.
In this guide, we’ll help you find a power tower that’s rugged, versatile, and space-efficient enough to earn its place in your home gym. Our experts have reviewed dozens of models from all across the market. Below, you’ll find our in-depth reviews of three models we think are worth the money.
|Picture||Product Name||Maximum Weight Rating||Cost|
|Stamina Power Towers||250 lbs||$|
|Fitness Reality X-Class High Capacity Multi-Function Power Tower||400 lbs||$$|
|Stamina X Fortress Power Tower||250 lbs||$$$|
Best Power Tower Reviews (2018)
The listing you’ll see if you follow the link above actually includes two different models of the Stamina Power Tower. They’re very similar products, but one is a souped-up version of the other. We’re recommending both models.
The cheaper Stamina power tower is about half the price of the X model. It includes all the same basic functions and has essentially the same design. The X model includes padding that makes it more like the premium models we’ve recommended below. All in all, it looks and feels like a much more expensive machine for something that doesn’t cost all that much more.
We suggest these for newcomers to strength training and to those who are on especially tight budgets. They’re pretty basic, but they include all the essentials you expect from a power tower for a very low price.
First, let’s look at what these two have in common:
Both models of the Stamina Power Tower have ergonomic designs. They’re both versatile workout stations that promote proper form and engagement as you do sets of pullups, pushups, dips, situps, chinups, and vertical knee raises. They can each be used for everything the average person wants to achieve with a power tower.
Both models also have 250-pound weight capacities that are as good as anything else in their price bracket, and actually a lot more impressive than other inexpensive options.
They’re extremely affordable. Even the more expensive X model is half the price of the Fitness Reality power tower below. The Stamina 1690 is the only power tower we suggest that’s around the $100 mark.
They’re both decently rugged, even if they’re not commercial-grade. The framework is all thick steel, and the welds are a lot better than you’d think for affordable equipment.
The X model is as comfortable as anything else under $300. Given that you can usually find it for less than $200, that’s extremely impressive!
Our pricier recommendations have higher weight ratings. The Fitness Reality in particular is a better choice for bulkier users.
They’re also more comfortable. While the X model here has decent padding, the 1690 is very bare-bones. Even the X model’s cushioning is lackluster compared with our nicer recommendations.
These power towers aren’t adjustable. Our more expensive recommendations are easier to personalize and tweak to your own body. These are ergonomic for most people, but may not be perfect for everybody.
More expensive models also include extra features, especially the Stamina X Fortress below.
As you’d expect from such inexpensive pieces of equipment, the Stamina models here are somewhat cheaply-made. Both feel rather light compared with the more expensive models we recommend.
Quality control is unimpressive, as with other budget-priced fitness equipment. We’ve seen reports from buyers who received units that didn’t come with the proper hardware out of the box.
While they’re miles better than the competition at their price point, they’re not going to last forever. Pullup bars on these don’t always last as long as you’d hope. They’re good for starting out but we don’t recommend them to serious, dedicated users.
This Fitness Reality model is our midrange recommendation. It’s a more rugged, versatile, and comfortable workout station than the cheaper Stamina models we’ve just looked at.
We recommend it to most buyers, who want something more versatile and rugged than the inexpensive Stamina models above, without spending a boatload on the Stamina X Fortress below. It’s rugged and well-equipped enough to keep even experienced folks on top of their game, while still being affordable enough for ambitious newcomers.
It’s rock-solid and rugged as hell! The Fitness Reality has the highest weight capacity of all the power towers we’ve reviewed, at 400 pounds. The frame is extremely sturdy, and can even be bolted to the floor for maximum security. Build quality doesn’t get better than this!
It’s very adjustable, which is a significant upgrade from the cheaper Stamina models. Its adjustable handlebars with foam rollers offer 7 positions. There’s also 3-position stability beam for the dip station. The whole thing is much easier to personalize to your body!
It’s very comfortable to use. The Fitness Reality has 3” backrest padding, and the forearm padding is over 2” thick. We have no complaints in this department!
It’s as versatile as the vast majority of users could want. 20 different exercises are possible, plus any variations you may think of. You can step onto the frame for support during dips or knee raises, too!
There are no durability issues that we know of or have heard of with this thing. It ought to last for years of frequent and intense use. We think it’s a better long-term investment than the Stamina models above. It’s covered by a 1-year warranty, too, just in case!
Fitness Reality has much better quality control on this one than we’ve heard of on the cheaper Stamina models. We’ve only seen one or two buyer reviews that mention missing hardware, and we’ve found that Fitness Reality has a good track record in this department. It’s one reason we recommend their cages so highly.
They also ship their products very securely, so you don’t have to worry about receiving broken or compromised units.
It costs significantly more than the Stamina models above. This one’s usually available for less than MSRP, but it’s still twice the price of the Stamina X above–even when it’s on a steep discount.
It’s not quite as versatile as the X Fortress model below, also from Stamina. The tradeoff is that the Fitness Reality has a much higher weight rating. So, this is the best choice for ruggedness while the Stamina X Fortress is the best choice for those in search of sheer variety.
This premium model from Stamina is our suggestion to those who want the best of the best in a power tower. It’s the most versatile model we’ve ever reviewed in this category and a superb investment to those who are passionate and ambitious about their bodyweight training regimen.
While premium, it’s not absurdly expensive. It’s still well under $1000. If you do nearly all your exercises using a power tower (something that’s easy to do with this one!), the price is a bargain.
It’s the most versatile on the market right now. Not only do you get grips and stations to do all the Fitness Reality’s 20 exercises, but it includes a box platform with adjustable height to boot! That’s much more convenient than standing on a steel frame. Ab straps, climbing handholds, and strong grip balls are all included as well! It’s a heck of a well-equipped fitness station.
While it’s not built as heavily as the Fitness Reality, it has comparable quality control and attention to detail. It’s rated for 250 pounds, which is more than enough for most users.
We don’t have much to fault this one for in the construction department–just one small gripe. It doesn’t have a higher weight rating than the cheaper Fitness Reality.
It’s very expensive for this type of equipment. Granted, it gives you a heck of a lot of workout options. Just make sure you’ll get your money’s worth from it. We generally only recommend this to folks who want to do basically all their exercises on one station.
Which of these power towers should you buy?
The Stamina models we looked at first are the obvious way to go if you’re just starting out or if you’re on a tight budget. The 1690 is our suggestion to those who are on a very tight budget. It gives you a simple, ergonomic frame to cover all the basics you expect from a power tower without any frills. However, if you can afford to spend a little bit more for the X model, we think that’s the better budget buy. It’s a bit sturdier and a heck of a lot more comfortable to use, thanks to its padding. We suggest the X model to folks who are just starting with bodyweight training and can’t justify spending more.
The Fitness Reality is our recommendation to most buyers. It’s a nice middle ground between affordability and versatility. This one is also by far the best choice for heavier users, since its maximum weight rating knocks our other recommendations out of the park. We think this gives even very driven users plenty of challenge and variety, without being so exorbitant that it’s out of reach for ambitious newcomers.
The Stamina X Fortress is our suggestion to folks who want to do practically all their training on a power tower. It’s the most versatile we’ve reviewed to date and has solid build quality that ought to last for years. While most people don’t need to spend this much on a fitness station, it’s a worthy investment for dedicated users who know they’ll get their money’s worth from it.
Decide On Your Budget
Quality power towers can cost as little as $100. At the other end of the spectrum, the most expensive models we recommend can cost $600+. That’s a fairly wide range, so it’s important to make sure you decide up front how much you can afford to spend and how much you can justify investing.
If you’re just starting your fitness journey and are looking to build muscle through bodyweight exercises, you’ll find that inexpensive power towers under $200 provide more than enough weight capacity and challenge.
If you’re already in pretty good shape and are looking to take things to the next level, we suggest spending at least $300. Models above that threshold have stronger build quality, more features, and better padding that all make a big difference in how enjoyable they are to use and how much working life you can get from them.
Know Your Requirements
Power towers all share the same basic design, but they do vary pretty widely in terms of how much weight they’re designed to take and which exercises they’re designed to facilitate. Here are a few key criteria to consider as you’re choosing the best one for your home gym:
Weight limit: as with any piece of fitness equipment you buy, you need to make sure that your new power tower is built and rated to handle your bodyweight safely. The models we recommend can all accommodate at least 240 pounds. If you weigh more than that, make sure you check to make sure that your new model is suitable!
Space: always check the measurements of your workout space against the dimensions of any power tower you consider buying. It’s no good to spend loads of time doing your research and choosing something with your dream set of features, only to find that it doesn’t fit with your space when you set it up.
Exercises: as we’ve mentioned, while all power towers are designed for the basics (pushups, pullups, dips, ab exercises, etc.), some models have some extra features that help you do more. Think about what specific exercises you want to do on your power tower, and which you can accomplish on other pieces of equipment. If you’re a relative novice, don’t sweat it! Just choose something basic. You’ll still have plenty of options. If you’re an old hand at bodyweight training and need something that can keep you constantly challenged and moving forward, we think it’s worth paying more for a more versatile power tower.
Now that you’ve read through this entire guide, you’re in a perfect position to choose your perfect power tower! Click on the links in our reviews to find more details about the models we’ve recommended here. That’s also the easiest way to check current prices and find full lists of specs and features. Remember to visit our homepage to find links to all our latest buying guides, reviews, and other useful content!