Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Review

rogue sml-2 squat stand

Product Description: The Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand features 3x3” 11-gauge steel uprights and an adjustable fat/skinny pull-up bar. It is equipped for squats, bench, pull-ups, clean pulls, floor press, and more. With a footprint of just 49" x 48", it's a squat stand well suited to a home or garage gym.

  • Construction - 95%
    95%
  • Affordability - 70%
    70%
  • Versatility - 85%
    85%
  • Design - 90%
    90%
  • Weight Capacity - 95%
    95%

Final Verdict

The Rogue SML-2 is an outstanding squat rack.  Although it is not cheap, it is excellent value considering it will serve you for a long time without any issues.

The US-made, thick 11-gauge steel is highly durable and the black powder-coated finish looks terrific.

The Rogue SML-2’s relatively narrow footprint won’t take too much space and the 1000 lbs weight capacity is more than enough even for the strongest home gym enthusiasts.

Overall
87%
87%
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Pros

  • Excellent capacity – can handle up to 1000 lbs, more than enough even for the strongest lifters.
  • Terrific build quality and excellent stability – it doesn’t wobble and remains stable even when using heavier loads.
  • US-made using heavy-duty 11-gauge steel.
  • Has a built-in pullup bar.
  • Guaranteed by Rogue for life.

Cons

  • Safety catches are only optional, which raises the price.

Rogue Fitness is the go-to choice for anyone looking to purchase quality fitness equipment for their gyms. But, they are certainly not the cheapest brand, far from it. Therefore, the ultimate question that follows all Rogue products is – is it worth the money? 

In this review, we will tell you more about ROGUE SML-2 MONSTER LITE SQUAT STAND.

By the time you finish reading this post, you will know all of the pros and cons of this squat stand and whether or not it deserves to be in your home gym, so keep reading!

Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Key Features

Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Review 1

US-Made

Because it is American-made, you can expect the highest manufacturing standards and a superb-quality piece of gym equipment, which the Rogue SML-2 really is.

Rogue is famous for having US-made equipment. They pride themselves on the fact that they use local American businesses for some of their best products.

This one is made in Columbus, Ohio, using US steel. You can also expect this rack to last a lifetime without bending or breaking, as it has a Rogue lifetime guarantee.

Given that you only need to buy a squat rack once, it makes sense to invest more if you know that you get what you pay for.

Build Quality & Stability

This US-made freestanding squat stand is incredibly sturdy, as it’s made of 11-gauge steel tubes. Uprights are made of 3×3”, while the base is made of 2×3” tubes. 

Because it is American-made, you can expect the highest manufacturing standards and a superb-quality piece of gym equipment.

The rack even looks excellent, as it is entirely black, and the powder-coat finish helps protect it against scratches.

Capacity & Dimensions

You can expect maximal stability, even when using the heaviest weights, up to 1000 pounds, which is phenomenal. This is commercial-grade equipment, right in your home gym.

What’s also important for constricted spaces, it has a 49″ x 48″ footprint, 92” inches high, which is very reasonable. 

Customization Options

The ROGUE SML-2 Squat Stand is incredibly sturdy and durable. Still, the only thing that comes with it is a pair of J-hooks with protective plastic and a pullup bar of choice. Considering the price, that isn’t a lot.

In our opinion, if you want to maximize the potential of this incredible squat stand, you need to buy some accessories. First and foremost, you should purchase a pair of SAML-24 Monster Lite Safety Spotter Arms.

These will make exercising much safer, as they will catch the bar in those cases where you can’t complete a lift, preventing injuries and property damage.

Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Review 2
SAML-24 Monster Lite Safety Spotter Arms

Of course, Rogue sells other accessories as well – getting an adjustable bench would be a good decision, too, if you don’t have one already. The same goes for bars, plates, or even different pullup bars.

Also, you can choose floor mounting feet for added sturdiness, or wheel brackets, for better maneuverability. 

Unfortunately, these add-ons will raise the total price considerably. Considering that even the squat stand-alone isn’t cheap, buying more accessories from Rogue will push the price up even further, which is a problem for people on a tight budget.

If you are looking for a different sizes, Rogue also offer the SML-1 (70″) and the SML-3 (108″) in the same product line.


Is the Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Right For You?

Pros:

  • Excellent capacity – can handle up to 1000 lbs, more than enough even for the strongest lifters.
  • Terrific build quality and excellent stability – it doesn’t wobble and remains stable even when using heavier loads.
  • US-made using heavy-duty 11-gauge steel.
  • Has a built-in pullup bar.
  • Guaranteed by Rogue for life.

Cons:

  • Safety catches are only optional, which raises the price.

Final Verdict

The Rogue SML-2 is an outstanding squat rack.  Although it is not cheap, it is excellent value considering it will serve you for a long time without any issues. The US-made, thick 11-gauge steel is highly durable and the black powder-coated finish looks terrific. The Rogue SML-2’s relatively narrow footprint won’t take too much space and the 1000 lbs weight capacity is more than enough even for the strongest home gym enthusiasts.

Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Review 3

Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand Alternatives

The ROGUE SML-2 Squat Stand is a fantastic squat stand, but it has one flaw – it is not cheap if you want extras.

Here are some other squat racks on the market that are more affordable but don’t have the same level of quality Rogue Fitness offers:

HulkFit Multi-Function Adjustable Power Rack

HulkFit is not Rogue, and you can’t expect the same level of quality SML-2 offers. This squat rack is still a good choice for those on a tight budget but still want a decent piece of equipment.

First, the total weight capacity is 1000 lbs, which is excellent, considering the price. It is also made of 11-gauge steel, just like SML-2, which is also a plus. 

What makes it stand out is the price and the number of extras you get for it. Safety catches are included, but it also has other accessories – plate holders, multi-grip pullup bar, dip bars, T-bar row platform.

While it looks great on paper, the truth is that the HulkFit rack’s quality can’t match Rogue standards. This is to be expected when comparing prices. Still, if you are really on a tight budget, HulkFit will do a decent job for you.

Titan T-3 Series Tall Squat Stand

T-3 squat stand by Titan Fitness is relatively similar to Rogue SML-2 when it comes to design and features. You can say that Titan mimics Rogue, offering decent equipment at a lower price.

The T-3 Tall Squat Stand has a 1000 lbs weight capacity and is made with 11-gauge steel tubes, which means you can expect good stability and longevity. The tall model is 92 inches high, but you can also opt for the shorter, 72-inch version.

T-3 squat rack has Westside hole spacing in the bench/pull zone, which means that holes are closer together in these zones, allowing more precise adjustments. Also, both uprights have side holes too, which gives you more options for accessories. This number of holes lets you adjust the rack to your needs, making exercising optimal for your body proportions.

Titan T-3 Series Tall Squat stand comes with a built-in pullup bar and J-hooks, but that’s it. You will still need to purchase some essentials such as safety hooks separately, which adds to the price. 


Squat Rack FAQs

What is a Squat Rack?

Squat racks or stands allow safe execution of common compound barbell movements such as squats and overhead presses. There’s just no way how to put a loaded barbell on top of your traps safely without a squat rack or a power cage.

The difference between squat racks and power cages is in their structure. Squat racks only have one pair of vertical bars, while power cages have two pairs, connected at the top and bottom.

Power cages are more rugged and stable but also take up a lot of space, which is why most home gyms lack room for them. And let’s face it – for most home gym enthusiasts, squat racks provide more than enough sturdiness and stability.

Not sure which is right for you – then check out our Full Racks Vs. Half Racks guide.

Also, there are differences between squat stand designs. Some are fixed to a wall, which gives better stability, while others are freestanding, which provides you with more options. Some stands have safety catches that are an excellent option when working out alone, minimizing injury risks.

What Exercises Can You Perform on a Squat Rack?

If you are creative, you can do basically any exercise even inside a squat rack, but here are some of the most common ones most lifters do:

Overhead press (OHP) – squat racks are an excellent choice for overhead presses. OHP is usually the weakest of all major barbell lifts, which means that using a full rack will never be an issue, as you will never get close to its limits when performing the OHP. Plus, because there are no horizontal bars above you, you will be able to fully extend your arms above your head, no matter how tall you are. This means that squat racks are an excellent choice for Olympic-style lifting too.

Bench press – you will be able to fit an adjustable bench inside most racks. Doing that will allow you to perform the bench press safely, even alone. Just remember to set safety bars above your chest level so they catch the bar before it smashes your chest if you fail the lift.

Pull-ups – squat racks usually have a pull-up bar at the top, which is excellent as pull-ups and chin-ups are essential for back training.

Hanging leg raises – you can perform hanging leg raises while hanging from the pull-up bar too.

Rack pulls (lighter) – rack pulls are excellent for building your back and traps. The only problem is that they allow you to lift a lot of weight, which is not a good idea since you start the lift with the bar resting on the safety catches, which might bend them.

Front and back squats (lighter) – a squat rack is obviously ideal for squats, both front and back, as it lets you get into position easily and lift the bar safely.

What Are the Pros of Squat Racks Vs. Full Racks?

  • Much smaller than a full rack – takes up less space
  • Offers a good variety of exercises, including OHP and Olympic lifts
  • More affordable than a full rack
  • Ideal for beginner and intermediate lifters

What Are the Cons of Squat Racks Vs. Full Racks?

  • Lacks stability when compared to a full rack
  • Can’t withstand the heaviest loads
  • Not suitable for advanced lifters
  • Not every squat rack has safety bars

Conclusion

The ROGUE SML-2 Squat Stand is an outstanding squat rack and an automatic choice if you have the money for it.

It is not cheap, and the price goes even further up when you buy accessories. But, if you can afford it, you will never have any regrets, as it will serve you for a long time without any issues.

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