Although DP exercise equipment is no longer being manufactured, the products are still popular in home gyms. DP, which stands for Diversified Products, sold several types of home gym equipment from the 1960's until they closed their doors in 1998.
The History of Diversified Products
Founded in 1961, DP was started by Forrest (Fob) H. James after he discovered a new way to produce barbells. A clean and attractive barbell was the first product that DP sold. From there Fob recognized that there was a need for fitness training at home and decided to expand to other products. He established the company's first manufacturing plant in Opelika, Alabama and from there the business grew steadily over the years.
Between the years of 1962 and 1998, DP sold hundreds of thousands of pieces of exercise equipment at stores such as Sears, J.C. Penney, and K-Mart. The company was the largest manufacturer of at home fitness products in the world. They established plants all over the globe, in such places as Mexico, Canada and Wales. DP was even asked by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to produce the exercise equipment for the Apollo 11 space flight as well other flights. They also gained recognition from famous athletes such as professional tennis player Margaret Court and Green Bay Packers quarterback Bart Starr.
Fob James left DP in 1978 to run for the Governor of Alabama and gave the company to his brother Cal James. It remained in the James family until 1991 and shortly thereafter, the business closed down.
Types of DP Exercise Equipment
Over the thirty years that Diversified Products was in business they produced several different types of workout equipment. All of their products were made for in home use. The most popular products were the all in one home gym that offered several different exercises on one piece of equipment. Other exercise equipment that they manufactured included:
- Barbell sets
- Exercise bikes
- Weight benches
- Rowing machines
- Weight systems
DP also manufactured sporting good equipment such as basketball backboards and hoops.
Where to Find the Equipment
Since DP exercise equipment is no longer being manufactured, it takes more research to find the products. Some places to look are:
eBay is a great place to start looking for exercise equipment by DP. The best way to find the equipment is to do a search in the sporting goods category for "DP" or "Diversified Products." A listing of any products that match those keywords will be displayed. From there, browse the different selections that are available to see if anything is of interest. Check back often, as new listings are added everyday.
Check classified ads online such as Craigslist or in your local newspapers. Always be sure that you follow safety precautions when you buy an item from a person that you do not know. Never go into a person's home to get the fitness equipment, instead they should bring it outside to you.
Secondhand Stores and Garage Sales
Secondhand sporting good stores as well as consignment shops may have used Diversified Products equipment. Garage sales in the area are also another place to look for the exercise equipment. Make sure the equipment is in proper working order before purchasing.
Some exercise and weight loss forums will allow posted ads of wanted equipment. If another person visits the forum that has the equipment, an exchange or sale can be made privately.