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January 11, 2019 2 Comments
As macebell training continues to grow in popularity, the number of companies selling macebells is going to rise as well. Where there is demand, there will be supply.
Nevertheless, at the current time, there aren’t that many companies selling macebells. However, there are still enough sellers for people to ask “what is the best macebell?” and “where should I buy a macebell?”
The answer can be as simple as, "buy your maces from SET FOR SET or ONNIT", but if you want to make an informed decision, there are a lot of factors to consider because macebells come in different varieties. Not to mention, it depends on where you live.
Apart from materials, one should consider the size of the mace - total length and handle diameter are important factors. The length of the mace handle and how the weight is proportioned in the mace ball (aka mace head) plays a crucial role in how well the mace swings for swinging movements, like the 360 and 10 to 2. The diameter of the handle is a necessary point of consideration, with thicker handles being more grip oriented and thinner handles most resembling a traditional Gada.
In any case, a macebell should be proportioned correctly, meaning uneven weight distribution, with most of the weight being in the ball. If not, well, it’s not exactly a mace and it defeats the intended purpose and beauty of this unconventional fitness tool, which is offset training.
In this article, we are going to cover all of the above in more depth while discussing where you can buy different kinds of macebells. Additionally, we will give you our opinion on what is the best macebell in the bunch.
For the sake of keeping things simple, we are going to assume you live in the USA.
When doing a simple Google search for macebells, you will notice the top results are steel maces. This is the most popular kind of macebell as it is the most versatile, plus it is easy to produce.
Unlike the other kinds of macebells listed above, the steel mace is extremely durable and can be used in a variety of ways. You can slam it, press it, pull it, swing it.
A Steel Mace is extremely durable. In fact, it’s virtually indestructible. It is made of steel after all.
You can use a steel mace for essentially any exercise imaginable. For example you can do a curl with it as you would a barbell, except it will create an offset movement, which is amazing for boosting core stability, balance and coordination - that’s the beauty of the steel mace and its intended purpose, along with other incredible benefits, such as developing Thor like shoulders and grip.
Non-steel macebells are mostly limited to a few movements, like 360s, 10 to 2s, and gravediggers.
With that being said, the steel mace was based on the Gada and the Gada is only used for 360s and 10 to 2s...to incredible results. So, it's not that big of a deal for some people. Furthermore, those two swinging movements can be done in many ways (single hands, reverse, kneeling, half-kneeling, etc.). If we had to only do two exercises with the mace, those would be it. Thankfully we don’t have to though.
Personally, we love the all-around training the steel mace provides, not just the swinging movements - Our Youtube channel has tons of steel mace exercises and we love each and every one of them.
Now, you might be thinking that the steel mace isn’t entirely safe, as you are swinging heavy steel around. I mean, it’s only normal that you would think that. However, as long as you know what you are doing and you aren’t compensating your form (throwing out your shoulder, elbow or back would suck), you will be one hundred percent safe. We bring up injuries because that would be our only concern. There is definitely nothing to worry about in regards to the mace ball falling off. A well-manufactured steel mace can take a ton of abuse. You could even slam them on concrete (definitely not recommended, and if you do this you risk concrete flying all around and hitting you), as the head of a steel mace is welded on with the utmost integrity...at least this holds true for the brands we are about to list.
SET FOR SET (that’s us) Steel Maces are in our opinion the perfect length. Iterations have been made over time as feedback from the community was taken into deep consideration (we've sold thousands of maces since first launching).
We now have, what we believe to be, the best length and handle diameter that you could ask for in a steel mace.
When creating the mace, we kept in mind the importance of handle length and thickness for swing movements, while also not taking away from all the other cool exercises you can do with them, such as Offset Overhead Presses, Steel Mace Slams, Switch Squats, and the list goes on. SET FOR SET maces swing beautifully and will feel great in your hands for all movements, challenging your grip like no other.
Furthermore, we paid a lot of attention to the knurled gripping. The mace is knurled at the top and center of the mace handle. We’ve used a lot of different maces and have had a lot of feedback so we can conclude that SET FOR SET Steel Maces has some of the best knurling in the game.
Lastly, our most recent iteration was of the steel mace end cap. We use to have a removable end cap at the end of the handle. We changed that to a perfectly welded steel cap at the end, making our steel maces completely indestructible, top to bottom.
SET FOR SET Steel Maces range from 7-25LBS. We typically deliver orders in 3 business days, sometimes quicker depending on where you are in the states. Regarding pricing, are maces are priced extremely fairly (we also do discount wholesale pricing for those who own gyms or want to place large orders for occasions like steel mace workshops).
We have no issue talking about, and even complimenting, our competition. Onnit is an amazing, innovative, trendsetting company and we think their maces are of great quality, just as our SET FOR SET steel maces are.
If you are to choose between SET FOR SET and ONNIT, you will be choosing based on the brand, not the quality of the mace. That is fact.
Onnit Steel Maces range from 7-25LBS. They also have a Quad Mace with a really cool head design and a wooden handle, however, the integrity of that mace isn’t the same as the steel maces and we wouldn’t recommend slamming it.
Note: Pricing is slightly higher for Onnit Maces than SET FOR SET.
Their steel mace is well built and will also take a beating. However, the welding seems to be a little sloppy (something we have corrected over the years, so we understand this quite well). Nonetheless, as stated, it will withstand abuse just like the rest.
What we really don’t love about Incline Fit maces, something that helped us in our design is their slippery gloss finish and lightly knurled grip on the handle. When you are swinging around the mace for minutes on end, you will notice the difference in grip. Furthermore, their smallest mace doesn’t have any knurling at all (again something we had done originally but since changed to add the knurling on our lightest mace).
Also, Incline Fit uses a plastic end cap at the top of the handle, which can be popped off. This has proven to be a bit of a nuisance as if you aren’t careful you can drop it and either damage it or pop it off (another thing we "corrected"). It will not, however, affect the mace's functionality in any way.
Incline Fits most redeeming qualities are that they have a wider range of maces - 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30-pound steel maces - and the fact that they focus on Amazon Prime so the price is low and the shipping is quick.
We won’t go into details on this one as we have never used or seen it in person, BUT it looks super badass. However, it is MUCH more expensive. Like over $100 more for a 15LB mace (they use KGs to determine weight, though).
A loadable mace has a hollow ball so it can be filled to increase the weight. Most loadable maces use either lead shot or sand, although some use water (plastic loadable maces), which is pretty interesting if you ask us.
Here are a couple companies that sell loadable maces.
Titan’s Loadable Mace is fairly new to the market. When it is empty, it is 15lbs and it is fillable with lead shot, sand, or something of the like. It’s a solid mace and a cool option if you want an all in one mace. And honestly, the price point is good.
With that being said, we have a few concerns with it. Firstly, if you are just starting out with macebell training, 15lbs is quite a lot. We know it doesn’t sound like a lot but you’d be surprised by how heavy a 15lb mace actually feels, and for most movements, you’d be compromising form and risking injury at that weight if you are inexperienced with mace training.
Another issue we have is that the handle isn’t that long and the grip is quite large. This isn’t a problem for most movements, but it is for the two main movements the mace was actually designed for – the 360 and 10 to 2. If you want to perform swing movements properly, you need an adequate handle length. 40+ inches is ideal.
On a more positive note, the cool thing about this mace is that it is made of steel, so it is able to take a beating on most surfaces like the formerly discussed steel maces.
You may have seen Mr. Maceman sporting one of these super long hard plastic maces. The ball of the mace is super big and the handles are very long. They make for fantastic maces to swing 360s and 10 to 2s. What’s really cool is they offer customization like handle length and width, mace ball size, and color of the mace. I believe most of their maces are waterproof. Water seems like a really cool filling option as the movement would create an even more off-balanced feeling which is great for stability.
Besides that, though, their maces aren’t as versatile as steel maces. You are limited to certain movements, and you really don’t want to slam these around. Plus they aren't easy to take on the road as they are sooo long.
Moreover, they can’t be ordered quickly and easily, you need to get a quote and go through a less user-friendly, slower process to get one in your hands. Nonetheless, for the uniqueness of it, it could be worth the wait for some. Plus, they have a badass brand name. Look them up if you are interested in this type of mace.
Adjustable Macebells are similar to loadable maces - where with a single mace you can increase or decrease the weight, however, adjustable maces come in increments as you are adding or removing pieces of the mace to make it heavier. So you can't add just a couple of pounds like you can with a loadable mace.
The only adjustable mace that we know of that’s worth mentioning is by Adex.
Not going to lie, they are pretty damn cool and made very well. This is the only macebell mentioned in this article that doesn’t have a round head at the bottom.
The handle is 40 inches and they have 10 pieces, which means 10 different weight settings (7.5, 10, 12.5, 15, 17.5, 20, 22.5, 25, 27.5 & 30lbs).
Adex Mace isn’t cheap. It will run you around $200.
If you are really only looking to focus on 360s and 10 to 2s, Adex is a good option. But if you want a more versatile macebell that you can train with in various ways, go for a steel mace. For around $100-120 you can get multiple steel mace at different sizes, which will keep you busy for a long time. And, in all honesty, you really only need to start with a 10lb or 15lb mace, depending on your conditioning and body size. It will take time to master that one macebell.
Update: See the comment section below for a note on Adex maces by Adex themselves.
You can DIY a mace. If you are a skilled craftsman, this could be a fun project and it can save you some money (if you have some or most of the items needed handy).
The issue we have with recommending people to DIY a mace is that it can be dangerous if not done properly. You wouldn’t want to be swinging a mace and have the head fly off of it and hit someone or yourself.
Personally, if we were to DIY a mace, we’d make one just as the Pelwani Wrestlers do. We’d make an official GADA.
Here is a video of how to do so (this isn’t the exact method they use in India, but it’s damn near the same. The overall integrity and style are as close as it’s going to get.
The winner goes to…the SET FOR SET Steel Mace.
Now, it may seem like a bias opinion, and maybe it is slightly. Nevertheless, we are extremely confident that this is a good recommendation. We honestly have been thoroughly unbiased about all the other options.
Our steel maces are made extremely well, and macebell training is our sole focus at the moment. Therefore we have taken immense pride in continually fixing and creating the best mace on the market. We have the right length to weight ratio, price to value ratio, customer service to customer satisfaction ratio ;) and, we pump out a lot of free education - and one very in-depth paid e-guide with videos, which we get tons of positive reviews on - to help you along your mace training journey.
If you don’t believe us, here are some reviews from our customers. There are plenty more on our steel mace page.
If you are like me when making purchases, you take reviews seriously. The more reviews, the more you will know about the quality and overall experience. Most mace companies only have a few reviews. Only SET FOR SET, ONNIT, and INCLINE FIT have enough reviews to make a truly informed decision. Although we hope you will take our word on the rest as well. All the maces in this post are worthy, now the choice is yours.
You can also read a thorough comparison of Adjustable vs Fixed Weight Maces by long-time mace enthusiast Jan Libourel.
Already have a mace? Be sure to pick up our extensive steel mace training e-guide to take your (or your clients) mace training to the next level.
More Steel Mace Resources:
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