The 11 Best Barbells (2024 Update)

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When it comes to the best home gym equipment — or strength-training gear in general — the barbell reigns supreme. The versatility, style, and performance baked into these metal rods is iconic in the fitness space, and virtually any athlete can benefit from adding barbell-centric movements to their regimen. The best barbells combine craftsmanship with efficiency to help you get the most out of training each and every day.

If you’re interested in a barbell for your garage gym, you have more options than ever … which is both good and bad. Sure, you have plenty of worthwhile options from reputable brands, but the growing landscape requires more awareness. Do you prefer a bar with aggressive or passive knurling? What about weight capacities and tensile strength? Even colorways have entered the chat. To help you along your way, we’ve personally tested dozens of profiles from top brands and consulted with our in-house experts to land on our favorite barbells available today.

The 11 Best Barbells of 2024

About Our Expert

This article has been reviewed by Amanda Capritto, CPT, CES, CNC, CF-L1, CSNC, a certified personal trainer and CrossFit Level 1 instructor. She reviewed the research we cite and the barbells we listed to help ensure we’re providing helpful, accurate descriptions and recommendations. She also tested several of the barbells herself.

Best Barbells Video Review

While you should still read this article, check out our video review of the best barbells on the market in 2024.  Jake Herod, NASM-CNC, takes you through some of our picks and explains why each one deserves its award.

How We Tested and Chose the Best Barbells

The BarBend team is made up of competitive athletes, certified personal trainers, and lifelong fitness enthusiasts. To determine the best barbells available today, we got hands-on with 55 different profiles from the industry’s best brands, using a multi-point methodology to rate each profile on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest) to determine our top picks. Below are some of the categories and components we looked at to come up with our findings.

Workout Performance

While specs and metrics can tell us a lot about a given barbell, the hands-on experience is what’s most telling. So, we naturally considered how each barbell performed in a given workout regimen, noting its in-training comfort and efficiency, as well as its ability to curate worthwhile setups across different exercises, like the bench press, deadlift, back squat, and more.

Of course, we understand that not every bar is designed for multiple uses, so for more specific silhouettes catering to powerlifting or Olympic weightlifting needs, we made sure to examine their efficiency in their intended strength sport.

You’ll also find some specialty bars in our round-up, including safety squat bars and trap bars. Naturally, we wouldn’t recommend setting up for a shoulder press or Pendlay row with these units, but these profiles are meant for a singular purpose, so we judged their in-workout performance across those given disciplines.

All of this is to say that the barbells included in this guide are here for a simple reason — we like how they feel during training, and wouldn’t hesitate to add them to our own home gyms.

[Related: 5 Steps to Building Your Dream Home Gym]

Durability, Tensile Strength, and Weight Range

Outside of how we felt with each barbell, we also looked at how durable the profiles were once loaded up with our PRs and other heavy sets. We looked for any potential weak points across both the bars themselves, as well as the listed metrics with heavy emphasis placed on the tensile strength and weight range. 

All of the included barbells in this round-up feature at least a tensile strength of 190,000 PSI or a weight rating no lower than 750 pounds (some brands may list one statistic or the other).

We searched for barbells showcasing these metrics after determining that they lend themselves to extended use more efficiently than lesser readouts. We understand that few people will ever push their barbell’s weight rating to its absolute limit, especially when it comes to daily training outputs, but having the assurance that your barbell can take the abuse of regimented workouts can go a long way in your purchasing confidence.

Our tester bench pressing with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar.Our tester bench pressing with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar.
Jake bench pressing with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar

Your barbell’s durability also lends itself to its coating and how well it defends against grime, rust, and potential corrosion. We examined barbells with multiple coating options, favoring those that offered a ceramic profile or chrome finish over basic stainless steel units. Having a layer of coating across your barbell sleeve and shafts can be great for preventing rust build-up over time, and it’s a vital factor to consider if you live in a damp climate or train in a non-climate-controlled space.

Knurling

“Knurling is one of the most important components of a barbell,” says Amanda Capritto, a certified personal trainer. “If it’s too mild, you won’t be able to get a good grip on the bar, even with chalk. Too aggressive, and you’ll feel like you’re pressing your hands into nails.” 

That said, we understand there are many types of strength training, so we’ve included barbells that showcase a range of both passive and aggressive patterns.

We also paid close attention to the embedded knurling marks across each barbell shaft. Built in-line with regulations from either the International Weightlifting Federation or International Powerlifting Federation, these simple rings along your grip can provide helpful cues when setting up for a heavy lift or max effort. For general training needs, we looked for barbells showcasing both marks, while specific profiles for Olympic weightlifting and/or powerlifting could suffice with just their respective cutouts.

Price and Warranty

High-quality dumbbells can range from $225 all the way up to nearly $1,000. We understand that this is quite the range — and prices can vary depending on your barbell coating of choice — so we tried to keep this round-up as uniform as possible, with each pick’s starting price rarely starting above $400. 

Of course, you can play around with custom colors to potentially overshoot that mark, but we’ve found that this is a good range to keep in mind when searching for a top-notch strength training essential … at least at the start.

In addition to the starting price, we also examined each barbell’s warranty package. After all, these are some of the most-used pieces in a typical home gym setting, so having that security in your back pocket can be a nice perk. 

We favored barbells that offered a multi-year coverage plan, with extra points given to those offering lifetime warranties. While replacing these barbells can be less of an undertaking than, say, replacing one of the best treadmills, we tried to see which units could save you as much money as possible if breaks and bends begin to show up.

Best Overall Olympic Barbell: REP Fitness Colorado Bar






REP Fitness Colorado Bar




REP Fitness Colorado BarREP Fitness Colorado Bar

The REP Fitness Colorado Bar is designed for all-around use, thanks to its high weight rating and multiple coating and knurling options. For Olympic weightlifters, the composite bushings provide a smooth collar spin with just a touch of friction.

Specs

  • Price: Starting at $319.99
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 190,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 28.5mm
  • Coatings: Hard Chrome, Black Cerakote, Blue Cerakote, Green Cerakote, Red Cerakote, White Cerakote
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • Its high tensile strength and 1,500-pound weight rating can support years of training.
  • Composite bushings move smoothly through spins, which is ideal for Olympic lifters needing a barbell with optimal rotation capabilities.
  • The dual knurling marks and somewhat-aggressive knurling is comfortable and effective, according to our tester.

Cons

  • While the volcano-style medium knurling is appealing, we know it can be aggressive.
  • The lifetime warranty only covers product defects, which is less accommodating than other packages we’ve seen in the category.
  • If you’re a stickler for Cerakote color options, you can find more variety with different barbells.

Despite being a relative newcomer to the barbell space, the REP Fitness Colorado Bar has shown its prominence thanks to its impeccable construction, approachable knurling pattern, and multiple color options. We also give this bar the title of ‘Best Barbell for Home Gyms’ due to its relatively affordable price point ranging between $320 and $330.

In trials, we enjoyed the versatility at play with this well-made piece of fitness equipment. Our tester, a former Olympian, rated the barbell at 5 out of 5 for its durability, stating, “I especially loved the inclusion of composite bushings, which made the sleeves spin freely without hesitation while also boosting the durability during drops.” Plus, the Colorado Bar features dual knurling marks for IWF and IPF setups, although there is no center knurling patch to give you an added sense of grip during back squats or snatches.

Speaking of the knurling, we scored this feature at 4.5 out of 5. REP lists this volcano-style pattern as medium, although we feel it leans more toward the aggressive side of the spectrum in terms of toothiness. This is a plus from our perspectives — we’re big fans of a toothy barbell — but we know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea.

Our tester Power Cleaning with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.Our tester Power Cleaning with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.
BarBend’s Jake Herod with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.

The REP Colorado Bar is available with either a chrome or Cerakote finish, and there are multiple colors to choose from within the ceramic options. While this can be ideal for adding a splash of vibrancy to your home gym setup, we have found that other barbells offer a wider color palette. 

Still, though, we found that the extra ceramic coating didn’t interfere with our grip or bar control during workouts, so we only docked the unit slightly, giving its coating options a 4.5 out of 5.

Lastly, REP does offer a lifetime warranty for its Colorado Bar, but we highly recommend reading the fine print. The warranty only covers defects present from the factory — not training-related issues. If you’re an athlete that uses and abuses your gear, you may need to rethink your handling before signing up for this high-quality option.

Read our full REP Fitness Colorado Bar Review.

Best Budget Barbell: Iron Bull Competition Bar






Iron Bull Competition Bar




Iron Bull Competition BarIron Bull Competition Bar






Iron Bull Competition Bar


This barbell can withstand endless reps, thanks to its durable steel build. Plus, for those shopping on a budget, this is one of the cheapest options on the market.

Specs

  • Price: $225
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 200,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: N/A
  • Diameter: 28.5mm
  • Coatings: Black Zinc
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • At $225, this barbell is well below the $300 starting price associated with other barbells of this caliber.
  • The 200,000 PSI tensile strength lends itself to increased durability, meaning it should be good to go for years of training and regular use.
  • The 28.5-millimeter shaft diameter is right in line with IWF and IPF regulations.

Cons

  • While this barbell does list its tensile strength, there are no metrics for a weight rating.
  • Those wanting a more colorful barbell with Cerakote options should look elsewhere.
  • There is no information on the aggressiveness of the knurling.

Sure, barbells can be less expensive than the best squat racks or other home gym staples, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t options when it comes to boosting performance while also saving a little coin. Take the Competition Bar from Iron Bull, for example. Despite its sub-$250 price tag, this unit still comes equipped with dual knurl markings, a sturdy 200,000 PSI tensile strength, and a comfortable shaft diameter that’s right on par with other bars specific to Olympic weightlifting or powerlifting disciplines.

Kate Meier, BarBend editorial member and NASM-Certified Personal Trainer, said she appreciates the build quality of this wallet-friendly barbell option, especially when it comes to the knurling marks and shaft diameter. The Competition Bar features dual knurling marks for both IWF and IPF setups, and the 28.5-millimeter diameter can closely replicate what you’d expect to feel on the competition platform. As such, we rated the construction at 4 out of 5 for this barbell.

Additionally, we gave this barbell a 4 out of 5 for its aesthetics. The black zinc coating does a good job of preventing rust and grime build-up, but it also just looks damn good in a home gym setting. We get it — black isn’t for everyone, but when it comes to moving heavy circles as aggressively and efficiently as possible, we’re okay with a little darkness to spark our motivation.

[Related: What Is Barbell Knurling?]

As far as the knurling is concerned, we don’t have actual measurements, so we have to rely on photos and our keen eye. While we’re okay in judging knurling from afar, we understand that most people don’t spend days arguing over hill, mountain, and volcano styles, so we scored this category at 3.5 out of 5.

We’re still getting hands-on with this Iron Bull barbell, so we can’t truly speak to its durability over extended use. From what we’ve seen, though — and the very approachable price tag — we’re confident when we say it’s worth your consideration, especially if you’re trying to save a buck.

Best Barbell for CrossFit: Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2






Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2




Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2






Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2


The Wonder Bar V2 is a unique offering in the barbell category as you can actually choose between rotation systems. While other barbells typically offer one system or the other, you can truly fine-tune your setup with the Wonder Bar V2’s bushing barbell for slower, powerlifting-centric movements or the bearing-equipped barbell for more dynamic exercises like you’d experience in CrossFit or Olympic weightlifting.

Specs

  • Price: Starting at $269
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 205,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: 1,600lbs
  • Diameter: 28mm
  • Coatings: Killer All-Black Zinc
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • The passive knurling won’t tear your hands up when powering through multiple reps in a WOD.
  • You have the option of bushings or bearings, with bearings being the more ideal option for CrossFit athletes given the better spin.
  • This barbell is covered with a lifetime warranty against manufacturer’s defects.

Cons

  • According to our tester, the sleeves can easily scar after loading and unloading multiple bumper plates over time.
  • While the black zinc shaft coating looks cool out of the box, the color will eventually fade more so than a ceramic coating.
  • There is no center knurling patch for added control during specific movements like a back squat.

If you’re looking for a barbell to supplement your CrossFit dreams, we think the Wonder Bar V2 from Fringe Sport is up to the challenge. Of the many different types of barbells, we like the Wonder Bar for more dynamic movements — a common theme for CrossFit WODs — thanks to its passive knurling that won’t rip your hands to shreds, a lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects, and the option to choose between a bushing-based or bearing-based internal system.

For CrossFit WODs and other HIIT sessions, we’d recommend opting for the needle bearing option (a price increase of $20 from the starting cost), as this can be more fitting for the quick, seamless rotations you want in those workouts. 

“Bearings, on the other hand, provide more spin for superior wrist turnover in the Olympic lifts, making them a favorite amongst Olympic lifters and CrossFit athletes alike,” noted our tester, a certified personal trainer.

As such, we rated the rotation of this bar at 5 out of 5. Plus, the fact that Fringe Sport gives you the option of bushings or bearings is impressive in its own right — other barbells typically operate with one system or the other.

As far as looks, the Wonder Bar V2 is coated with a “killer all-black zinc” finish, which is as sharp as ever when it comes to style. We loved the look of this bar right out of the box, but we recommend savoring that sense of satisfaction — zinc coatings can begin to fade over time. We scored the coating at 4 out of 5. It’s still a pretty barbell, but it will begin to show its age quicker than, say, a Cerakote barbell.

The Wonder Bar V2 also showcases no center knurling patch, which can be seen as both a positive and negative. Yes, you won’t scratch your chin and neck when going for a heavy snatch or clean and jerk, but the lack of a center patch does limit your sense of control when setting up for a back squat. This is why most powerlifting bars feature a center knurling pattern. 

Still, though, we did enjoy the more passive construction that’s prime for daily training, so we only docked the scoring slightly for a 4 out of 5 rating.

Best Safety Squat Bar: Bells of Steel SS4






Bells of Steel SS4




Bells of Steel SS4Bells of Steel SS4

This safety squat bar from Bells of Steel can be a treat to train with thanks to its impressive balance and accommodating shoulder pads. Plus, the handles are interchangeable with four different setups to choose from for refreshed, engaging workouts each time leg day rolls around.

Specs

  • Price: $319.99
  • Weight: 20.68kg
  • Tensile Strength: N/A
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 32mm
  • Coatings: Black Titanized
  • Knurling Marks: N/A

Pros

  • According to our tester, the safety squat bar feels extremely balanced and sturdy.
  • It’s compatible with four handle styles, which can help create an ultra-comfortable setup.
  • Its weight is listed clearly on the endcap for more informed training and workout logging.

Cons

  • Given its unique shape, this is not a do-it-all barbell for lifts such as the bench press or other upper-body movements.
  • The coating flakes easily, according to our tester, resulting in stained hands.
  • The knurling is pretty aggressive. 

Safety squat bars are a unique silhouette with padded shoulder braces and cambered design. While we wouldn’t recommend these bars as a singular, “do-it-all” profile for most home gyms, advanced athletes that know the benefits of such a device can benefit from having one available for leg days. In our opinion, the Bells of Steel SS4 sits at the top of the list thanks to its impressive sturdiness, well-padded shoulders, and modular handle system that allows you to change up your grip across four different setups.

Kate Meier, BarBend editorial member and NASM-Certified Personal Trainer, said that she had a fantastic experience with this safety squat bar, rating the workout at a 5 out of 5. “One of the first things I noticed was how balanced this bar was across my frame, even after walking out from the rack. I own other safety squat bars, and I typically need to readjust before dropping down for a squat.”

[Related: Safety Squat Bar Benefits]

We also enjoyed the aggressive knurling strewn across the handles of this high-quality unit, rating it 5 out of 5 as well. Meier also pointed out that the additional handle attachments (starting at $39.99) feature a similar knurling, so there’s a good sense of consistency when changing up your grip placement. Naturally, though, we understand that not every athlete is willing to grate their hands through a workout, so be sure to take your personal preferences into consideration.

Our tester squatting with the Bells of Steel SS4 safety squat bar,Our tester squatting with the Bells of Steel SS4 safety squat bar,
Our tester squatting with the Bells of Steel SS4 safety squat bar.

The Bells of Steel SS4 also comes equipped with a black tetanized coating that can be ideal for rust prevention and easier cleaning. In testing, however, we did notice that this layer can flake off rather easily across the sleeves, especially when loading and unloading iron plates. As a result, our hands were left stained from the residue, leading to a 4.5 out of 5 rating. If you’d rather not scrub your hands after each session, you may want to opt for a different safety squat bar.

Best Barbell for Powerlifting: REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar






REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar




REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power BarREP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar






REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar


Built for heavy squats, bench presses, and deadlifts, this bar is super stiff for stability with an extra millimeter of thickness to prevent any wobble during high-percentage lifts. Plus, aggressive center knurling prevents the bar from slipping down during low-bar squats. 

Specs

  • Price: Starting at $329.99
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 200,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 29mm
  • Coatings: Black Cerakote, Blue Cerakote, Green Cerakote, Red Cerakote, Stainless Steel
  • Knurling Marks: IPF

Pros

  • The 29-millimeter shaft diameter, IPF knurling marks, and center knurling patch all align for a powerlifting-centric setup.
  • According to our tester, the mountain-style knurling is plenty grippy for added control.
  • There are multiple Cerakote options available, which can help differentiate between your powerlifting barbell and other standard bars.

Cons

  • With an emphasis on powerlifting, this barbell is not suited for disciplines like Olympic weightlifting or general strength training.
  • According to our tester, REP’s stainless steel isn’t as corrosion-resistant as other brands in the barbell space.
  • The starting price of roughly $320 may be too much for more budget-minded athletes.

Powerlifting can be an excellent discipline to follow if strength is your main goal. That said, the sport’s emphasis on the “big three” — bench press, deadlift, and squat — puts greater emphasis on the gear’s ability to perform in stricter confines and planes of motion. While there are plenty of power bars on the market, we feel the Double Black Diamond Bar from REP Fitness is the current title holder.

REP built this rather new barbell directly in line with the needs of the powerlifting community. 29-millimeter barbell shaft diameter? Check. Sturdy 200,000 PSI tensile strength? Check. Knurling marks aligned with International Powerlifting Federation Specs? Double check.

Our tester deadlifting with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar.Our tester deadlifting with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar.
BarBend’s Jake Herod with the REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar.

It’s not just the metrics that have us raving over this bar, however. In trials, our tester, a certified personal trainer, stated that the durability was top-notch, rating it at 5 out of 5 for the category. “I wouldn’t put this bar through the rigors of commercial gym use, but I think it’s prime for at-home powerlifting,” they added. “With a little barbell maintenance every now and again, this Double Black Diamond Bar should last decades.”

[Related: Powerlifting Workouts for Beginners]

This REP barbell also earns its keep thanks to an aggressive knurling pattern across the shaft, which we scored at 4.5 out of 5. We also appreciate the presence of a center knurling patch for added control and stability in the back squat. Admittedly, though, this mountain-style knurling is pretty toothy, so those looking for a more passive in-hand experience may want to opt for a different silhouette.

Finally, the Double Black Diamond Bar is available in multiple colorways, including four Cerakote options. This can help differentiate your powerlifting bar from others in your collection while also giving your home gym a nice dash of vibrancy. Be mindful, though, that the stainless steel option may lead to more rust build-up than desired. We’ve had previous REP barbells with this coating, and found that the finish isn’t as resistant to corrosion as other stainless steel bars.

Read our full REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar Review.

Best Barbell for Women: Rogue Fitness Bella Bar 2.0






Rogue Bella Bar 2.0




Rogue Bella Bar 2.0Rogue Bella Bar 2.0

The Bella Bar 2.0 is perfect for women seeking a versatile and durable barbell for their workouts.With a slightly smaller diameter and an E-Coat finish, people with smaller hands should find this bar easier to grip. 

Specs

  • Price: Starting at $235
  • Weight: 15kg
  • Tensile Strength: 190,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: N/A
  • Diameter: 25mm
  • Coatings: Black E-Coat, Stainless Steel, Black Cerakote, Blue Cerakote, Red Cerakote, Green Cerakote, Navy Cerakote, Orange Cerakote, Light Blue Cerakote, Pink Cerakote, Purple Cerakote, Gold Cerakote, Light Grey Cerakote, Black Zinc
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • Its 15-kilogram weight and 25-millimeter diameter may be more accommodating to female athletes with traditionally smaller hands than males.
  • Dual knurling marks can help you set up for a number of Olympic weightlifting and powerlifting grip positions.
  • Multiple coating options resist corrosion and allow for a customizable style. 

Cons

  • According to our tester, the knurling pattern may be too passive for some athletes.
  • Those wanting optimal spin for Olympic lifts may not appreciate the bronze bushing system.
  • The sleeves may become scuffed and scratched over extended use.

Let’s get this out of the way — women can use any barbell they want. However, given the fact that women typically have smaller hand sizes than men, there are some barbell styles that can feel more comfortable in the throes of a lifting session. (1) These “women’s barbells” often feature a lighter overall weight, too, given their slimmer bar shaft. We think the Bella Bar 2.0 from Rogue is one of the best barbells for women due to its slim 25-millimeter shaft diameter and accommodating 15-kilogram weight.

Outside of the above measurables, the Bella Bar 2.0 has a 190,000 PSI tensile strength, dual knurling marks for more convenient setups, and a 13-inch sleeve length perfect for pushing your PRs to new heights. “There’s plenty of room for stacking plates on plates on heavy weights,” added our tester, a certified personal trainer, who rated the overall construction at 4.8 out of 5.

In terms of the knurling, Kate Meier, BarBend editorial member and NASM-Certified Personal Trainer, said, “I personally like the pattern showcased across this barbell. It’s rough enough to give you a decent grip, but not something that is going to scratch up your body when throwing weight around in more dynamic movements.” Still, though, athletes more accustomed to the aggressive knurling style more common in power bars may find the passive aesthetic underwhelming. For these reasons, we rated the knurling at 4 out of 5.

We also scored the Bella Bar 2.0 at 4.5 out of 5 for its versatility. We had no qualms with the bushings during strict or dynamic movements and found the sleeves to spin efficiently within our trial workouts. Naturally, we recommend those dedicated to a specific strength sport match their discipline to their barbell, but for general fitness enthusiasts, we feel this bar can get the job done.

Lastly, this Rogue option features one of the widest arrays of coating options we’ve tested, with 14 options to choose from for a nice zest of color within your setup. According to our testers, though, the sleeves can easily become scuffed and scraped after just a few workouts. This can be a minor issue, especially if you’re not worried about your gear having some wear and tear, but it’s worth pointing out.

Best Trap Bar: Titan Fitness Open Trap Bar






Titan Fitness Open Trap Bar




Titan Fitness Open Trap BarTitan Fitness Open Trap Bar






Titan Fitness Open Trap Bar


This Open Trap Bar from Titan Fitness packs in plenty of sturdiness and durability across its boxed tube design, and the integrated deadlift jack makes loading up for a heavy set more convenient than ever. Plus, this 88.5-inch length can be racked in your typical squat rack, which can be a great setup for heavy rack pulls or other rows.

Specs

  • Price: $349.99
  • Weight: 65lbs
  • Tensile Strength: N/A
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 32mm, 38mm 
  • Coatings: Black Powder Coat
  • Knurling Marks: N/A

Pros

  • The open bar silhouette means you aren’t confined to a rigid positioning. 
  • You can actually rack this specialty barbell in a standard squat rack for easier weight loading or elevated pulls.
  • A built-in deadlift jack makes loading and unloading weights more approachable.

Cons

  • According to our tester, storing this uniquely-shaped barbell can be a hassle, especially if you’re limited on space.
  • While the open design is accommodating, beginners may find the 65-pound bar weight too heavy.
  • The box-tubed construction makes this a less durable trap bar than others in the category, which can be used for specialty exercises like cambered bench press.

Trap bars can be a convenient specialty bar for athletes, especially those wanting to focus on their deadlifts that still haven’t mastered the sumo or conventional deadlift form. The neutral grip and more upright body positioning can help reduce stress and strain on your spine, making this heavy lift far more approachable. (2) For our money, the Open Trap Bar from Titan Fitness is prime for these needs thanks to its built-in deadlift rack, high weight capacity, and ability to be placed in a standard squat rack for more elevated pulls.

While we rated this trap bar at 3.5 out of 5 for versatility — this is a bar more attuned to deadlifts, lunges, and pulls than other trap bar exercises — we still had a great experience in testing this unit and scored the workout performance at 4.5 out of 5. 

“I really enjoyed the knurling across the multiple handles,” noted our tester. “Other trap bars are typically sharp and aggressive, whereas this one is much more comfortable. Still, though, I had no concerns about dropping the weight — you definitely get that locked-in feel.”

There’s also a built-in deadlift jack that can make loading up for a heavy set much more convenient. Instead of propping up the bar to slide a 45-pound plate onto the sleeve, you simply rotate the bar onto its stand. This creates added space between the sleeve and your flooring, allowing you to seamlessly load up without any true complications.

The Titan Open Trap Bar carries a weight rating of 1,500 pounds, which we attribute to the boxed tube design. It’s very sturdy (and somewhat heavy) so we feel this profile, can carry athletes through plenty of grueling sessions. We rated the durability a perfect 5 out of 5, putting it among the best trap bars we’ve tested.

Admittedly, though, the 65-pound heft may be too heavy for beginners, so be sure to take your personal abilities into consideration before ordering.

Lastly, while we appreciate the Open Trap Bar’s rigidity and structure, housing this unit can be a pain for some. It’s a large piece of equipment at 88.5 inches long. This can be helpful when racking this trap bar in a squat rack for elevated pulls, but it may eat up more floor space than you’d desire when you’re not throwing around serious weight.

Best Barbell for Beginners: DMoose Regional Barbell






DMoose Regional Barbell




DMoose Regional BarbellDMoose Regional Barbell

This affordable, multi-purpose barbell has dual knurling marks and a tensile strength of 150,000 PSI. Forged from steel, the barbell features a black phosphate coating on the shaft and chrome on the sleeves. 

Specs

  • Price: $194.99
  • Weight: 35lbs
  • Tensile Strength: 150,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 28mm
  • Coatings: Black Phosphate
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • Dual knurling marks with moderate bite suitable for beginners learning lifts
  • Rated for up to 1,000 pounds
  • At $194.99, it’s roughly $100 to $200 less expensive than other high-quality barbells

Cons

  • No center knurling patch
  • Only available with black phosphate coating and chrome finish 
  • Some may prefer more aggressive knurling

Beginner athletes have a ton of barbells to choose from, and the decision can be quite daunting. You don’t want to skimp on quality, but an over-engineered bar can be a detriment to both your training motivation and your wallet. The DMoose Regional Barbell, on the other hand, combines excellent performance with an approachable price tag, making it our standout recommendation for novice lifters.

Our tester, a certified personal trainer, used this bar for deadlifts, presses, squats, and even some triceps extension variations while preparing for a powerlifting meet. “I think it’s a solid option for those looking to start bodybuilding training,” they said, scoring its versatility a 4.5 out of 5. 

Knurling and markings scored a 4 out of 5, as this DMoose profile lacks a center knurling patch, which may be disappointing for those looking to work on their squats. It does, however, have dual rings for both Olympic lifting and powerlifting grips. Our tester prefers a more aggressive knurl than this bar provides, but thinks that the moderate design here should suit those who are new to lifting. 

The affordable $194.99 price tag — well below the typical $300 to $400 range of high-quality barbells — may also appeal to beginners, as will its solid 150,000 PSI tensile strength rating. Pricier barbells tend to feature tensile strengths between 190,000 and 200,000 PSI, but if you’re just starting out, this should suit you just fine. 

Our tester scored both construction and durability a 4.5 out of 5. “I dropped it on the safeties of a rack with 500 pounds on it and it’s straight as can be,” they said. “I actually think this is the perfect barbell for beginners. With proper care, it will last years, and can continue to support heavier weights as they get stronger.”

Best Multi-Purpose Barbell: Rogue Fitness Ohio Power Bar






Rogue Ohio Bar Barbell




Rogue Ohio Bar BarbellRogue Ohio Bar Barbell

The Rogue Ohio Bar is 28mm in diameter, has a sleeve length of 16.4 inches, and features two knurling marks for optimal hand placement. It’s made of stainless steel, and comes with a lifetime warranty.

Specs

  • Price: Starting at $275
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 190,000-200,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: N/A
  • Diameter: 28.5mm
  • Coatings: Black Oxide, Black Zinc, Stainless Steel, Cerakote, E-Bar
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • A “do-it-all bar” ideal for lifts, presses, snatches, and more, per our tester
  • Tensile strength between 190,000 to 200,000 PSI, depending on coating
  • Multiple coating options help resist corrosion

Cons

  • Lack of center knurling patch may be a dealbreaker for some
  • Our tester found the knurling too passive for their liking

Need a barbell that can truly do it all? Consider this 20-kilogram, 7.3-foot Ohio Power Bar from Rogue Fitness. Depending on the material, this barbell has a tensile strength of 190,000 or 200,000 PSI, making it tough enough to support heavy lifts, overhead presses, snatches, and just about any other strength workout. It does lack a center knurling patch, though, so it may not be the best bar for squats. Nevertheless, our tester considers it a “do-it-all bar,” scoring its versatility a 5 out of 5.

A person Power Cleaning with the Rogue Ohio Bar.A person Power Cleaning with the Rogue Ohio Bar.
Our tester Power Cleaning with the Rogue Ohio Bar.

The Ohio Power Bar features knurl marks, which you’ll find on many multi-purpose barbells. The inner and outer markings are set by the International Powerlifting Federation and the International Weightlifting Federation, respectively. We scored the knurling a 4 out of 5, though our testers were divided on its bite, with one finding the volcano-style pattern suitable and the other declaring it “too passive.” 

That same tester, though, remains a fan of the Ohio Power Bar, “If your program has you performing tons of deadlifts and bench pressies, I think the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is one of the best investments you could ever make for your home gym.” They also noted it plays nice with many of the best power racks. 

We also scored its construction a 4.75 out of 5, noting its durable makeup and multiple coating options. We prefer the stainless steel option, as it has a higher PSI and can better prevent rust and corrosion. And did we mention the lifetime warranty? “Best in the biz,” said our tester, who scored the warranty a 5 out of 5. 

Read our full Rogue Ohio Bar Barbell Review.

Best Barbell for Weightlifting: Eleiko IWF Weightlifting Training Bar






Eleiko IWF Weightlifting Training Bar




Eleiko IWF Weightlifting Training BarEleiko IWF Weightlifting Training Bar






Eleiko IWF Weightlifting Training Bar


This barbell is certified by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) and built for the competitive Olympic weightlifter. It mimics the feel of Eleiko’s classic competition barbells with a slightly more forgiving knurling that lifters will find comfortable for regular training. Eleiko’s precision needle bearings ensure the barbell spins optimally at all loads.

Specs

  • Price: $980
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 215,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: N/A
  • Diameter: 28mm
  • Coatings: Chrome
  • Knurling Marks: IWF

Pros

  • This training-oriented bar meets all criteria from the International Weightlifting Federation.
  • Our testers loved the durability showcased across this bar, even after high drops with loaded barbell sleeves.
  • The knurling is tacky enough for an efficient grip, and the pattern holds chalk well without compromising control.

Cons

  • At nearly $1,000, this is one of the most expensive barbells available — other barbells typically cost between $300 and $400. 
  • A lack of IPF knurling marks means this barbell will be less suited for powerlifters.
  • According to our tester, unpacking this barbell from its shipping container can be time consuming.

If you’re familiar with Olympic weightlifting, you’re aware of the brand Eleiko. This Swedish brand has been churning out competition-grade barbells and bumper plates for decades, so it’s easy to see why we’d claim its IWF Training Bar as our favorite for weightlifting. This bar is in line with competition specs set forth by the International Weightlifting Federation, including a 28-millimeter shaft diameter, 20-kilogram bar weight, and IWF-matching knurling marks.

[Related: Beginner’s Guide to Olympic Weightlifting]

In terms of performance, our tester, a former Olympian, rated the IWF Weightlifting Training Bar at 5 out of 5. “I really enjoyed how this bar spins and moves with me through a lift. The whip is also on point — enough to help my max effort without feeling squirrley. I don’t own the bar myself, but if I had one, I’d be hard pressed to use a different bar.”

We also gave this Eleiko barbell a 5 out of 5 for its durability, which is a testament to the brand’s continued craftsmanship and quality. At 215,000 PSI tensile strength, it’s far beyond the ratings of other barbells that usually sit around 190,000 or 200,000 PSI. Plus, the inclusion of precision needle bearings ensures that the spin experienced is nearly identical to what you’d see on the competition platform.

As far as the knurling, Eleiko does dampen the toothiness of this barbell when compared to the competition-grade option in the lineup. Our testers still found this pattern grippy and controllable, though, scoring it 4.5 out of 5.

With all of this precision quality and workmanship, though, you’ll need to pay a premium. The $980 asking price is well beyond the typical $300 to $400 price tag often found in other high-quality barbells. 

Additionally, you’d expect such an expensive profile to be versatile enough for multiple uses. Unfortunately, though, Eleiko makes this bar with Olympic weightlifting in mind … and only Olympic weightlifting. There are no IPF knurling marks, and the diameter does not meet IPF standards.

We wouldn’t recommend this barbell for general athletes just looking to lift some of the best bumper plates here and there. For those dedicated to Olympic training, though, there are few pieces better suited for the job than this IWF Training Bar.

Best Barbell on Amazon: Synergee Games Cerakote Barbell






Synergee Games Cerakote Barbell




Synergee Games Cerakote BarbellSynergee Games Cerakote Barbell






Synergee Games Cerakote Barbell


The Synergee Games Cerakote barbell has a medium knurling, whip and has an above average tensile strength. Combine that with 10 needle bearings, and we think this barbell has a lot to offer many types of athletes. 

Specs

  • Price: $239.95
  • Weight: 20kg
  • Tensile Strength: 190,000 PSI
  • Weight Rating: 1,500lbs
  • Diameter: 28mm
  • Coatings: Red Ceramic, Black Ceramic
  • Knurling Marks: IWF, IPF

Pros

  • Given the Amazon availability, you can often get this budget-friendly barbell with free shipping.
  • The 190,000 PSI tensile strength is on par with other high-quality barbells, which are typically between 190,000 and 200,000 PSI.
  • You have the choice of multiple color options.

Cons

  • The 28-millimeter shaft diameter and lack of a center knurling patch makes it less ideal for powerlifters.
  • According to our tester, the sleeves can pick up scrapes and scuffs after just a week’s worth of workouts.

Do most of your shopping on Amazon? The convenient all-in-one online retailer has fitness equipment, too, including barbells that can truly elevate your workout routine. The Synergee Games Cerakote Barbell is one such example, boasting an impressive 190,000 PSI tensile strength, dual knurling marks, and a Cerakote finish (in red or black) that’s similar in quality to what you’d expect from tried and true barbell manufacturers such as Rogue or REP Fitness.

In testing, we rated the construction at 4.5 out of 5 thanks to the sturdy feel and the five needle bearings in each sleeve. Typically, bearings are a more premium spin option for barbells, so having this feature in a bar costing less than $250 is a real steal. “The spin is phenomenal and effortless,” added our tester. “I wouldn’t recommend this for slower lifts like squats or deadlifts, but for dynamic exercises, it’s a true winner.”

We also liked the knurling pattern across the Games Cerakote Bar, scoring it 4 out of 5. Our tester said the teeth are passive enough for daily training, but there’s no lost sense of grip. Dual knurling marks for IWF and IPF setups can also be great cues for where you place your hands for varied lifts, making this a great barbell for beginners, too. 

Unfortunately, there is no center knurling patch, so squat specialists may feel a drop in security when lining up for a heavy PR.

[Related: Barbell Complexes For Grip Strength]

As the name suggests, this barbell features a Cerakote finish, which can be ideal for preventing rust and corrosion. While we’d like to see a few more color options in this bar beyond the brand-oriented red and black schemes, we’ve had no issues with grime or corrosion thus far, leading us to a 4.5 out of 5 rating for the Synergee Games’s finish.

We do recommend, though, that you pay close attention to how you load weights across the barbell sleeves. These components are also coated, meaning scrapes and scuffs are bound to appear after just a few uses. If you’re looking to keep your equipment as pristine as possible, make sure to clean your barbell regularly. But if we’re being honest, we don’t mind a few battle scars. 

Benefits of Barbells

Amanda Capritto, a certified personal trainer, states, “Barbells are for anyone and everyone interested in strength training, any type and for any reason.” As such, there are a slew of benefits that come from adding one of these foundational pieces of equipment to your at-home workout setup.

Versatility

“Having a barbell in your home gym means you can do almost any type of strength training exercise possible: powerlifting, Olympic weightlifting, bodybuilding, CrossFit, AMRAPs, EMOMs, tabata, general strength training… You name it, you can do it with a barbell,” says Capritto. While a barbell will inherently require some extra equipment — such as a weight bench, weight plates, and/or a squat rack — the possibilities are near endless when trying to build out a respectable workout program just through a barbell.

Approachable Price Points

Thanks to a number of high-quality options on the market, there is practically a barbell for any budget. Common barbell prices range between $300 and $400 for top-tier quality, but there are also plenty of worthwhile silhouettes costing less than $250, too. 

Of course, you’ll need to plan for extra expenses like weight plates, a weight bench, or a power rack, depending on how you’d like to train. But when focusing on just the barbell itself, the prices can be plenty accommodating.

They Grow With You

When you start to grow stronger and more advanced in strength training, you’ll likely need to acquire more gear to keep your training in line with your performance. Thankfully, a barbell can be used time and time again without the need for replacements or upgrades. Think of it this way — your barbell is your foundation, while the weight plates represent your growth. You can continue to add weights over time, but your foundation remains the same.

Our tester Squatting with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.Our tester Squatting with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.
Our tester Squatting with the REP Fitness Colorado Bar.

This isn’t to say that every barbell will last a lifetime, and there’s nothing wrong with owning multiple bars for different training needs (squat one time with a safety squat bar and you’ll know what we’re talking about). In general, though, you can do a lot with a singular barbell in your fitness career, especially if you take proper care of your equipment.

Caring for your Barbell

To keep your barbell in tip-top condition, you’ll need to do three things semi-regularly:

  • Clean the chalk and any other mess off the bar and the knurling using a brush.
  • Wipe down the bar with a gentle cleaner and then give it a light coat of oil. Leave this overnight to sink in.
  • Check the sleeve to see if the bearings are in good condition. Some bearings will need oil, others won’t. You’ll need to check with your manufacturer whether your bar is the former or the latter.

How often you have to do these steps will depend on the metal used to make the bar, the climate you live in, and how often the bar is used. Cheaper bars made out of budget chrome or zinc will need checking regularly — we recommend every 2 to 4 weeks. Stainless steel and other more expensive options will need less frequent checks at about a monthly or tri-monthly cadence.

More humid climates will need more care to prevent rust than they would require in a dry environment. Finally, a bar that gets heavy usage will need more maintenance than a bar that you have personally in your garage and only use twice a week.

How Much Do Barbells Cost?

Barbells are an anomaly among gym equipment since they have a (relatively) narrow range of prices, with the exception of specialty bars. You can pick up a high-quality barbell that will last you a lifetime for around $300, perhaps less. If you want a special high-end bar for weightlifting or deadlifting specifically, you can spend upwards of $500 to $1,000. Most bars don’t go much higher than that in price. 

Best Overall Olympic Barbell REP Fitness Colorado Bar Starting at $319.99
Best Budget Barbell Iron Bull Competition Bar $225
Best Safety Squat Bar Bells of Steel SS4 $319.99
Best Barbell for CrossFit Fringe Sport Wonder Bar V2 Starting at $269
Best Barbell for Powerlifting REP Fitness Double Black Diamond Power Bar Starting at $329.99
Best Barbell for Women Rogue Fitness Bella Bar 2.0 Starting at $235
Best Trap Bar Titan Fitness Open Trap Bar $349.99
Best Barbell for Beginners DMoose Regional Barbell $194.99
Best Multi-Purpose Barbell Rogue Fitness Ohio Power Bar Starting at $275
Best Barbell for Weightlifting Eleiko IWF Weightlifting Training Bar $980
Best Barbell on Amazon Synergee Games Cerakote Barbell $225

The major differences come with the purpose of the barbell. You can snag a solid mid-tier multi-purpose bar, powerlifting bar, or weightlifting bar for about the same price. They may look the same, but the spin of the sleeves, knurling, whip, and knurl marks will vary quite a bit.

Barbells vs. Dumbbells

When it comes to outfitting your home gym for strength training, you’ll likely debate over whether to opt for a set of the best dumbbells or a barbell and free weights. In general, there is no right or wrong answer here, and many athletes can benefit from having both available across their home gym layout. However, there are some situations that may favor one discipline over another.

For athletes dedicated to a strength sport like Olympic weightlifting or powerlifting, we’d suggest opting for barbell workouts over dumbbells more often than not. This habit can help you better prepare for what you’ll experience on competition days — you can’t hit a baseball if you’ve never practiced your swing, right?

Our tester unloading the Major Fitness 20kg 7’ Home Gym BarbellOur tester unloading the Major Fitness 20kg 7’ Home Gym Barbell
Our tester unloading the Major Fitness 20kg 7’ Home Gym Barbell

For those wanting to focus on unilateral exercises to even out their frame, dumbbells can provide a more accommodating setup. They’re easier to control with one hand, and can also create a wider range of motion for those needing to support different mobility needs.

In the end, however, the best option for you is the one you feel most comfortable with. Remember, too, that there’s nothing wrong with mixing barbells and dumbbells in your training regimen — why do you think commercial gyms often feature both?

What to Consider Before Buying a Barbell

According to Amanda Capritto, a certified personal trainer, “Barbells are more complex than their appearance may lead you to believe. A well-built barbell with strong, high-quality components makes for a much different (and better) experience than one built with cheaper materials and components.” As such, it’s important to consider the following factors when adding a bar of your own to your cart.

Barbell Type

One of the first questions you need to answer when searching for a high-quality barbell is what sort of lifting you want to perform with the equipment. If you’re looking for a traditional lifting experience, a standard Olympic barbell should be sought out. “Olympic,” in this sense, refers to the bar’s compatibility with Olympic plates that feature a 2-inch opening.

There are sport-specific Olympic weightlifting barbells, though, that feature key components like medium knurling and needle bearings to better accommodate the needs of those strength athletes. Sticking with strength sports, powerlifting enthusiasts should look for a “power” bar designed to make the “big three” lifts of bench press, deadlift, and squat as efficient as possible.

Different Types of BarbellsDifferent Types of Barbells
Most lifters will want to choose one of these utilitarian barbells.

In addition to these three types of bars, you can also come across specialty barbells. These units will feature extra build qualities typically centered around a specific lift. For example, deadlift bars will feature an added sense of whip and aggressive knurling, while squat-specific bars will boast a more rigid construction, since you don’t want the weights jostling and shaking during your squat descent.

Other specialty bars may look nothing like your traditional barbells, but can still be beneficial for adding unique sensations to your training. This is where you’d find such examples as trap bars, safety squat bars, and EZ-curl bars.

Finally, you can also come across bars marketed toward women. In reality, female athletes can use any bar they please in training, but “women’s” barbells typically showcase a thinner bar shaft diameter and lower overall weight — often 15 kilograms — to better accommodate athletes with smaller hands.

Knurling

According to Capritto, knurling is one of the most important components to your barbell, as it’s the main point of contact with you and your equipment. “If it’s too mild, you won’t be able to get a good grip on the bar, even with chalk. Too aggressive, and you’ll feel like you’re pressing your hands into nails,” she adds.

When looking at different knurling patterns, be sure to take your preferences into consideration. Your intended training discipline can also help you decide how aggressive and toothy you want your setup to be. For example, powerlifters tend to favor an aggressive knurling pattern for added control during the bench press, deadlift, and squat, while Olympic lifters and CrossFit athletes generally prefer a more passive setup that won’t rip up their palms and fingers during more dynamic movements.

Our tester gripping a barbell where the knurling is.Our tester gripping a barbell where the knurling is.
Our tester gripping a barbell where the knurling is.

In addition to the knurling pattern, it can also be wise to look at the knurling marks etched into your barbell shaft. These rings are set by either IWF or IPF standards and can serve as a convenient physical cue when getting your hands into position for a lift. Most multi-purpose barbells will carry both IWF and IPF knurling marks, while sport-specific models typically showcase the rings associated with their given discipline.

[Related: Best Barbell Biceps Exercises]

Bar Diameter

A barbell’s grip diameter can be an easily overlooked construction attribute that can be very important. The most common grip diameter for men’s barbells tends to be around 28 or 29 millimeters, while smaller bars — often marketed as “women’s bars” — will feature a smaller thickness of around 25 millimeters.

Common Barbell Grip Diameters Useful for Whom/What
Men’s 28-29mm (Deadlift Bars Average 27mm) Recreational lifting, powerlifting, weightlifting, CrossFit
Women’s 25mm  Recreational lifting, weightlifting, CrossFit

If you are a casual lifter, you’ll want to choose the most common diameter and discover your preferences. However, if you plan on competing in a strength sport, you should investigate the diameters mandated by your sport’s governing body and only purchase bars that match that. The barbell you use in training shouldn’t differ much from those you’ll use in competitive settings.

Tensile Strength

Tensile strength measurements can give you a great indication of your barbell’s durability and load capacity. This metric refers to how much your barbell can be weighed down before breaks or structural compromises begin to take hold. Higher tensile strength indicates a more resilient bar, while lower numbers refer to a less capable unit. Below are some guidelines for which tensile strength ranges you should look for, and how barbells at these measurements can be best utilized in a workout routine.

  • 150,000 PSI > — Decent for beginners, but will likely require replacement quicker.
  • 150,000 — 180,000 PSI — Suitable resiliency for most athletes.
  • 180,000+ PSI — High-quality, well-constructed barbell that’s capable of repeated, extended use over multiple years.

Whip

Your barbell’s whip relates to how much it flexes when loaded down with heavy weights. While beginner or recreational athletes may never stress their bar to the point that this metric shows up, whip can be especially important for stronger strength athletes looking to use their equipment as efficiently as possible in a given lift.

A bar with more whip can be useful for Olympic weightlifters or athletes specializing in the deadlift. For Olympic lifts, more whip can help with inertia during dynamic movements like the snatch or clean and jerk. In the deadlift, the whip allows for less room between the plates and the platform, meaning you don’t need to lift the total load as high to achieve a completed rep.

More rigid barbells can also be desirable, especially for powerlifters. Less whippy barbells can be great for squatting, as the bars won’t bounce and jostle as you descend into the hole and push upward for a completed rep. The weights stay controlled across your back instead of flinging you every which way during your movement.

Whip may not be a huge factor for those not ready to lift hundreds of pounds, but it’s still worth thinking through when deciding on a barbell. Who knows, those half-ton totals could be right around the corner.

Bushings vs. Bearings

Your barbell will also feature either bushings or bearings within the sleeves, which help the weights rotate during movement for more efficient energy transfer and control. Standard barbells or power bars often use bushing systems, as they can be more efficient for slower lifts that don’t put a ton of torque on your wrists and setup. Capritto adds that bushings can also be more resilient and can provide a longer lifespan for your bar.

Bearings are a more premium option and best suited for dynamic lifts like you’d see in CrossFit, Olympic lifting, and HIIT workouts. “Bearings spin more smoothly and quickly, but are more expensive and tend to break down faster than bushings,” adds Capritto.

There is no right or wrong answer, though — you can still perform many of the best barbell exercises with a bushing-based barbell — but understanding the internal makeup of your bar can help you make the most of each training session.

Price and Warranty

High-quality barbells can range in price, with many coming in between $300 and $400. You can save a little money by opting for a cheaper barbell finish like zinc or basic chrome, but be mindful that these coatings will begin to fade more easily than premium options like Cerakote. Additionally, these less-expensive finishes have been shown to be less resilient toward rust and corrosion build-up over time. In the end, however, the best barbell is the one that fits your budget best.

You should also consider your barbell’s warranty package. Many brands offer a multi-year or lifetime coverage against manufacturer’s defects and design flaws, but certain stipulations can exist in your specific plan. Be sure that your intended training method won’t void any coverage. For example, if your warranty doesn’t cover damage brought on by drops, it may not be a great support system for your Olympic weightlifting habits.

Final Word

Barbells are an incredibly versatile tool in the realm of strength training, and virtually every athlete can benefit from adding barbell-centric movements to their routine. There are plenty of worthwhile profiles in the space, too, at varying price points, so odds are you can find a setup that’s perfect for your needs regardless of your budget.

When thinking about which barbell is right for you, be sure to think about the bar’s durability and construction. You don’t want to drop a few hundred dollars on a rod that’ll snap after just a few PRs. Knurling, shaft diameter, coating options, and intended training disciplines can also influence your purchase. Using this guide as a blueprint, you’re only a few clicks away from redefining the phrase, “Meet me at the bar.”

Barbells FAQs

How much do barbells cost?

Barbells have a few different price ranges, with entry-level and multipurpose bars generally coming in between $300 and $400. High-end and specialty bars can cost anywhere from $500 to over $1,000. Unless you’re specifically training for one strength sport, such as powerlifting or weightlifting, then you can usually use a solid multi-purpose bar to meet all your needs.

What is the best barbell?

Similar to any other piece of lifting equipment, that depends on your goals and budget, but the barbell we like the most right now is the REP Fitness Colorado Bar. It’s extremely durable, well-priced, and performs admirably in every discipline of lifting.

What makes a great barbell?

A quality barbell will come with some form of warranty and a full rundown of performance specs. Some companies leave out key details that provide insight into how long their bar will likely last, so always be mindful of features like tensile strength, whip, shaft material, and so forth.

What does a barbell’s tensile strength mean?

Tensile strength for a barbell entails how much your barbell can be loaded with before it breaks or fractures. Basically, a high tensile strength equals a better barbell.

Does whip matter in a barbell?

Yes. Whip is an important component to consider for athletes and lifters that are training heavy and have specific strength sport focuses.

References

  1. Barut, C., Dogan, A., & Buyukuysal, M. C. (2014). Anthropometric aspects of hand morphology in relation to sex and to body mass in a Turkish population sample. HOMO, 65(4), 338–348.
  2. Heckel, A. (2022, September 12). 13 benefits of an open trap bar. REP Fitness.

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