The REP Gladiator Bar has a superb tensile strength of 230,000 PSI with a 1500-pound capacity. This bar is built to last and to deliver excellent performance, and is a great option for HIIT workouts, cross training or power lifting.
An affordable bar that delivers 600 pounds of weight capacity and knurled grips for a secure hold when lifting. For beginners, this bar is a great option that’s made from high-quality materials while still not breaking the budget.
This steel barbell has medium-depth knurling that delivers comfort and grip when lifting, while the center is smooth for versatility when you’re performing squats. The bar can support two-inch Olympic plates and is great for beginning training.
This product review was written by Ainsley Hunter
This product review was written by Ainsley Hunter
|Body-Solid Tools Olympic Straight Bar||A 600-pound weight capacity with secure hold from knurled grips||$|
|RAGE Fitness Olympic Training Barbell||Aluminium barbell with rotating sleeves and bushings for durability||$|
|CAP 2-Inch Olympic Barbell 1200-Pound Capacity||A 44-pound steel barbell with polished steel sleeves and medium-depth knurling||$$|
|XMark Fitness Lumberjack 7’ Olympic Bar||A high-quality bar with knurling marks and smooth chrome sleeves||$$|
|Merax Commercial 7’ Olympic Bar||Heat-treated alloy bar with a powerful 190,000 PSI tensile strength||$$|
|Titan 60″ Barbell||500-pound capacity with diamond knurling and a chrome finish||$$|
|Power Guidance Olympic Bar||Hard chrome coating with bright chrome sleeves for durability and resistance from rust||$$|
|ARCHON 45 LB Olympic Bar||High-quality bar with a maximum load of 750 pounds and 150k tensile strength||$$|
|XMark Blacksmith Olympic Bar||Made from high-strength steel with a maximum weight capacity of 1500 pounds||$$$|
|REP Gladiator Olympic Bar||A true Olympic bar with 230,000 PSI tensile strength and five needle bearings per sleeve||$$$|
Best Olympic Barbell
For gym-goers who are serious about building their strength, barbell training is a must. This method of exercising is more effective than practically any other type of strength training, particularly for building functional strength which is the type that allows you to carry out everyday tasks more effectively, like lifting or carrying objects. But, unless you’re experienced in the world of lifting, choosing the right barbell set-up can be tricky. There are many options on the market and the type of lifting you want to do will determine the right barbell for your needs. The difference between Olympic weights and standard weights is the size of the hole – Olympic plates have a two-inch hole while normal plates are just one-inch wide.
The sleeves of the barbell will determine how much spin the bar will have, which will be permitted through either bearings or bushings – the former delivers a smoother spin while the latter lowers friction and are most commonly made from brass to ensure durability. High-end Olympic bars usually have bearings, while general purpose bars use bushings. The strength of the barbell is also important, as this can be determined using two measurements – tensile and yield. Yield strength is the weight that would be necessary to bend the bar, while tensile strength is the breaking point of the barbell. 165,000 PSI is a good minimum for a new barbell but something over 180,000 is a better option. These are ten of the best Olympic barbells on the market to suit all different strengths and budgets.
BodySolid Tools’ Olympic Straight Bar is an affordable option for beginners or lifters looking for an everyday addition to their workouts. This bar can support up to 600 pounds of weight and has been designed for efficiency with heavy workouts. The bar itself weighs 44 pounds and has a 15.5-inch collar length and a 51-inch sleeve length. There’s an option for a classic chrome finish or a dense black finish depending on your preference too. For taking free weight workouts to the next level, the Body-Solid Tools Olympic bar is a fantastic product that doesn’t disappoint. Consider a compression shirt for increased blood flow when using your olympic barbell.
- 86-inch bar with a 600-pound weight capacity
- Secure hold from knurled grips
- 15.5-inch collar with a 51-inch inside length
RAGE Fitness’ Olympic Training Barbell weighs just 15 pounds on its own, so it is ideal for beginners, with a maximum weight capacity of 300 pounds for when you want to develop your workouts and build up to heavier loads. The medium knurling delivers just the right amount of grip so you can lift safely and securely. The bar is made from aluminium and has been designed to be used with 2” Olympic plates, with 49” of grip area between the sleeve collars. From developing cardiovascular fitness and endurance to building stamina and the all-important strength, this barbell is a great starter bar that spins freely and can be used for scaled weights and intense workouts.
- Six-foot bar with medium-depth knurling
- Maximum weight capacity of 300 pounds
- Rotating sleeves with bushings
The CAP Olympic barbell is made from touch steel with a black oxide finish and polished steel sleeves. This bar also comes in a choice of colored bars, with red, blue, purple or pink available in UV-stable coatings that have a matte finish for durability. This barbell fits 2-inch Olympic plates and has been designed for fantastic performance and balance, with a maximum weight capacity of 1200-pounds. The sleeves have a good level of spin, so you won’t be in danger of hurting your wrists and the knurling has a decent depth for additional comfort. The bar doesn’t have knurling in the center, for versatility when you’re performing exercises like squats. A popular barbell with amateurs and experienced weightlifters alike, the CAP barbell is a great balance between affordability and performance. See our best budget power racks to allow various exercises for your olympic barbell.
- 1200-pound weight capacity
- Sleeves with snap clips with medium-depth knurling
- 86.6” in length, weighing 44 pounds
The XMark Fitness Lumberjack Olympic Bar has a black manganese phosphate shaft and brass bushings that are designed to last and provide excellent protection from abrasion and corrosion. It has semi-aggressive knurling that offers superior grip, with dual knurling marks. The sleeves of the XMark Lumberjack bar are made from smooth chrome, allowing for an easier loading and off-loading of the plates but they also give a more premium feel to the bar as well. The black coating on the shaft of the bar has a mildly tacky feel which helps to deliver superior grip during lifts, as well as providing extra protection. This is a bar that’s build to stand the test of time and will be a great addition to your home gym set-up for years to come.
- Chrome sleeves for easy loading of plates
- Dual knurling marks for secure grip
- Coated with black manganese phosphate for longevity
The Merax Commercial 7-foot Olympic Bar has an incredibly tensile strength of 190,000 PSI and can cope with weights as high as 1500 pounds. This bar has been crafted from high-quality materials, with heat-treated alloy steel, a snap ring lock system and chrome finishing for protection against corrosion, rusting and scarring. The 28mm grip diameter allows you to hold heavier loads comfortably and securely, so you can work towards your personal best every time without worrying about losing grip mid-lift. This is one of the heavier bars on this list, sitting at 50 pounds without any weights loaded, so it’s a great choice for those experienced in lifting who want to continue to develop their strength and stamina training with home workouts. For other great gym equipment see our favourite manual treadmills.
- A maximum weight capacity of 1500 pounds for intense lifting sessions
- Made from heat-treated alloy steel with a hard chrome finish
- 28mm diameter grip with 51 inches between collars
Great for a wide variety of exercises, from lunges and overhead presses to bicep curls and bench pressing, the Titan 60” Barbell is crafted from heavy-duty steel and has a smooth chrome finish that prevents rusting. The barbell fits 2” Olympic plates and can comfortably cope with 500 pounds of weight, so you can build up your workouts as you develop your strength. The diamond knurling provides you with plenty of grip and also prevents injuries from occurring from the bar slipping during lifts, ensuring you exercise safely and as efficiently as possible. The Titan barbell is maintenance-free and well balanced that makes an effective addition to your home gym routine. See our top picks for leg press machines if you’re building a home gym.
- Fits 2-inch Olympic plates with a 500-pound capacity
- Made from heavy-duty steel with a chrome finish
- Diamond knurled handles for additional grip
The Power Guidance Olympic Bar has two conveniently placed knurl marks for a firm grip that makes lifts more comfortable and stable, particularly during power lifts. The black chrome coating prevents rust or corrosion from forming, while the 28mm diameter of the bar means it will be comfortable to hold. This bar has 16.4” of loadable sleeve length and weighs 20kg, with a maximum capacity of 1500 pounds so there’s plenty of room to develop your workouts and build up to heavier exercises. This bar produces a consistent spin that’s smooth and has a great level of whip during any movements. Find a good sit up bench for good decline press.
- Dual knurl marks for a comfortable, secure grip
- 28mm diameter grip with 16.4” of loadable sleeve length
- 20kg bar for a smooth spin and whip
The ARCHON Olympic Bar has a unique style with bold color features, but this bar isn’t just about appearances. It has four premium needle bearings for a smooth spin along with two brass bushings for just the right level of whip. It’s an ideal bar for curling and squats, as well as adding weight training to your CrossFit workouts. The ARCHON bar has a tensile strength of 150,000 PSI and can cope with weights up to 750 pounds, so beginners will love this barbell. There’s no center knurling on this bar, just knurl marks for Olympic and power lifting, and it has a 28.5mm diameter grip so it’s comfortable to hold even with heavier weights.
- Four needle bearings with two brass bushings
- 150,000 PSI tensile strength with a maximum load of 750 pounds
- No knurling in the center for a more comfortable hold when power lifting
Crafted in the USA, the XMark Blacksmith Olympic Bar is made from premium materials, with high-strength American steel and black oxide sleeves that are impervious to rust and corrosion. This is a fantastic bar for weight lifting and cross training, with just the right level of whip that makes it great for interval training. This bar has a maximum capacity of 1500 pounds and weighs 45 pounds on its own, with room to accommodate 2” Olympic plates. One of the biggest complaints many lifters find is knurling across the entire bar, but the Blacksmith bar has no center knurling, so you don’t have to worry about shredding your hands and neck when lifting.
- Medium knurling with no center knurling for better comfort on the neck
- 15” black oxide sleeves that can accommodate 2” Olympic plates
- 1500-pound weight capacity for heavier sessions
The REP Gladiator Olympic Bar is built to deliver the best performance possible, with optimal whip, excellent grip and a smooth spin. The five needle bearings on each sleeve allow for smoother snatches and the medium-depth knurling gives you plenty of grip when you’re lifting heavier weights, making this bar great for power lifting and cross training. The bar has a hard chrome finish for maximum resistant against rust and corrosion, while also being low maintenance. The main benefit of this barbell is the narrower diameter that makes for an easier and more comfortable hold, as well as the 1500-pound weight capacity so you can intensify your workouts as often as you like. A dip station would also be a great addition if building a home gym.
- 28mm diameter grip with the optimal level of whip
- 230,000 PSI tensile strength with a 1500-pound rating
- Five needle bearings per sleeve for a smooth spin
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