Why I prefer dumbbell over barbell
Dumbbells are small and friendly whereas barbells are large and gorgeous but the differences do not end there. They offer different types of exercises and also different convenience factors.
But none of those automatically make one better than other. It is the individual user that make one more preferable choice of exercise equipment than other.
I personally love dumbbells for their small size and versatility for one can do almost equivalent of every possible exercise that can be done with a barbell with a small pair of dumbbells and some more.
Dumbbells are not as space hungry like a barbell, you need space to store a Olympic sized barbell which is more than 7 feet in length, even a smaller one will take 5 feet at the least. Also for exercising with such an equipment you need additional space.
So for people living in small apartments of modern cities barbell can not be the preferred training solution unless one joins a gym and pay huge fees for exercising.
Contrary to that dumbbells are a lot more homely solution, you can easily have few pairs of dumbbells in your living room and do all sorts of exercises with those.
And if you buy an adjustable dumbbell set of a good brand it is even more convenient in terms storage and handling.
Only time you will find the dumbbells are inadequate when you outgrow them because dumbbells can go up to a certain level as far actual is poundage concerned.
But if one is exercising for fitness and good looking body that is quite less likely to happen. Because the maximum weights the dumbbells can go up to is quite high, like 200 pound or more for a pair.
Another disadvantage of dumbbells have over barbells that if you plan to buy a full set of rubber coated dumbbells you will have to spend quite huge amount of money. But most people either buy a few pair as per their requirement or buy a adjustable set that way they do not spend too much for the equipment.
Dumbbells shine on another front in that dumbbells do not force you to use additional stuff like a squat rack or power-rack which is indispensable if you workout alone using barbells. Without such additional accessories you have to have spotters with you to help you with certain types of barbell exercises like bench press.
But I personally prefer using dumbbells for their inbuilt safety. If during any exercise you find it uncomfortable because of some reason you can safely get rid of the weights and be free and safe. It is not so simple if you are working out with a loaded barbell.
But be careful certain types of dumbbells like power block or fat-bell which is marketed as improved and more balanced dumbbell does not have this safety mechanism, in that you can not get rid of those weights as a simple plain vanilla dumbbell. And if you are using adjustable dumbbell set be sure about the ruggedness of the set before throwing them.
Also dumbbells helps to detect and correct strength imbalances between right side and left side of the body. For example, if you have a trouble to curl a 30 pound dumbbell with your left hand whereas you can easily do so with right hand then there is imbalance and doing more work on left side can correct that.
But as barbells are used with both hands, imbalance detection is difficult unless the strength gap is really huge.