Weider is owned by ICON Health and Fitness. ICON is one of the largest exercise equipment manufacturers worldwide. Weider manufactures health and fitness products, including the Weider Crossbow Advantage home gym. Although it has been discontinued and replaced with the Weider MAX, thousands of consumers own both the original and replacement models. They are versatile home gyms are aimed at budget-conscious buyers.
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The Weider Crossbow Advantage--which has been discontinued and replaced by the Weider MAX--is priced reasonably at around $600. According to the manufacturer, you can perform up to 65 exercises with this home gym, making it a total-body, or universal, home gym. The resistance weight is 240 lbs., but you may upgrade it to 440 lbs. by purchasing additional resistance bars. The gym is 82 inches high, 66 inches wide and 80 inches in length. Weider offers a lifetime warranty on the resistance bars, a five-year limited warranty on parts and a one-year labor warranty.
The Resistance System
The Crossbow Advantage uses its Compound Resistance System (CRS). CRS is rod resistance technology, like that used for the BowFlex models. According to the manufacturer, Weider home gyms are comparable to the BowFlex models but are more affordable, offer better resistance and a wider range of motion. Rod resistance negates the need for space-consuming weight plates, bars and dumbbells. Flexible rods offer different levels of flexibility that correspond to the amount of resistance of a particular weight. For example, a 40 lb. rod is like lifting a 40 lb. dumbbell.
The Crossbow features exercise stations for the major muscles groups of the upper body, including the chest, back, shoulders and arms. Flat and incline bench presses work the upper and mid-pectoralis (chest) muscles. Pec flies can be performed by holding the grips to bring your arms together in an arc motion. Exercises for the back include seated latissimus dorsi (lat) pull-downs, lat pull-ups using the overhead bar, and seated rows using the sliding seat. You can perform traditional biceps curls, seated shoulder press and overhead triceps press using the lower resistance bars.
Major muscles of the lower body include the quadriceps, hamstrings and gluteus muscles. You can perform major lower body exercises using the Crossbow. The seat must be removed to perform standing squats which work nearly all lower body muscles. A leg curl/extension attachment allows you to do two traditional exercises for the front and back of the legs. Seated leg extensions work the quadriceps muscles and leg curls (lying flat on your stomach) work the hamstrings.
If you are looking for a budget buy, the Weider Crossbow Advantage, or its replacement, the Weider MAX, is good value for money. It is compact and you can change resistance easily and quickly. The lat tower and sliding seat are desirable features. However, because the Weider Crossbow Advantage is an economy machine, it is not built to the same standards as more expensive models, such as the Bowflex. Consumer reviews are mixed. The nature of consumer complaints are mainly regarding broken parts and slipping rods. It may not hold up as well over the long run.