Weight lifting bars are the staple of working out. Even if you go to a gym, it’s not a bad idea to have a set at home. Bars are simple equipment – it’s just a piece of long metal, right? But, buying the wrong bar can give you some problems when working out.
For example, you might not like the way the bar balances; it’s too long and doesn’t fit in your narrow workout space; or you buy the wrong size and none of your plates fit onto the bar. Oops!
Before you go spending your precious money to buy a weightlifting bar, read this guide. Here are four most popular types of lifting bars that you can add to your home gym:
Best Weightlifting Bar
|1||Best Overall Bar:|
CAP Barbell Combo Hex Bar
- Overall great bar
- Holds up to 750 lbs
- Some quality issues
- Ends a bit short for stacking weights
|2||Best Value for Money:|
Body Solid 7-Feet
- Good value for money
- Holds up to 600 lbs of weight
- Good for beginners
- Can bend and rust easily
- Bar is quite long
- Not suitable for professional quality
|3||Best Affordable Bar:|
Sunny Chrome Dumbbell
- Affordable price
- Comes with collars
- Fits only non-Olympic plates
- The collars come loose easily
|4||Best Bar for Curling:|
Champion Barbell E-Z Curl
- Made for curling
- Holds up to 160 lbs
- Doesn’t work with Olympic weights
- Collars sold separately
1 – CAP Barbell Olympic 2-Inch Combo Hex Bar
The best overall weight bar. The CAP Barbell Olympic Combo Hex Bar is a multiple functional exercise equipment because it combines both handles from high and regular hex bars. The combo hex bar has special coating that makes it resistant towards rust or corrosion. It can take up to 750 lbs of weight, so you can get lift heavy weight sets using this bar. This hex bar is a great weight lifting equipment if you’re looking to do squats, dead lifts, and shrug exercises.
Some customers complain about the quality of the bar. They receive a bar that is uneven, the finish is a bit sloppy and poor, and the zinc coating rubs off over time. Some even receive a bar that already has rust on it. The ends of the bar is a bit short and may not fit all the weights you want to put on it.
Despite some quality issues, this bar gives function at a good price. It’s useful to help reinforce your back when you are lifting heavy weights. Please note that you can’t use this bar for doing bench press exercises. Your body height also plays an important part in how comfortable it is to use this bar, but it is safe for most people.
2 – Body Solid 7-Feet Olympic Bar
The best value for money. The Body Solid Olympic Bar is made for heavy exercises, such as bench presses. Bench pressing is great to workout multiple muscle groups together. This bar is a solid and good bar that can hold up to 600 lbs of weight. It’s well built for heavy duty, so you will probably spend a long time with this bar. With this bar you can do heavy squats and also benching, shoulder press, and barbell curls.
Some customers complain about quality problems, such as it bends easily, rusts easily, and the chrome peels off. Since this bar is quite long, you need to consider if there is enough space in your house. You might need to find a large space to do the heavier workouts. You also need Olympic weights with this bar, since the standard plates won’t fit.
Though there are some issues, this bar is more than adequate for power lifting at home. If you want a professional high quality bar, then this one may not suit your needs. But if you want a bar that is good for beginners or for doing light exercises, then the Body Solid comes at a great price.
3 – Sunny Chrome Dumbbell Bar, 14-Inch
The best affordable bar. The Sunny Chrome Dumbbell Bar allows you to add or subtract the intensity of your exercises based on the weight that you put on it. This bar is cheaper than an adjustable dumbbell set, and can give you similar functionality, but you might have to buy several as you progress along your training.
Due to the size of these bars, they can handle around 2-3 plates on each side. Note that the bar is 1” and fits only non-Olympic plates. Over time, you might need more plates (especially for heavier weights), so you will need longer bars than this one. The Sunny Dumbbell bar comes with two collars for each bar.
Many customers complain about the collars because they easily loosen up with each repetition. You may have to tighten it often. The chrome on the bar can peel off and potentially injure your fingers. Even though some customers complain, other customers say their product is fine and works great.
4 – Champion Barbell 47 x 1-Inch Chrome E-Z Curl Bar
The best bar for curling. The Champion Barbell Chrome E-Z Curl Bar weights about 10 lbs on its own. It’s 47 inches long, and depending on your training progress, you might need a longer bar. It is a well-built and sturdy bar, with a grip that feels good on your hands.
The bar can hold up to 160 lbs, and around 3-4 2 inch plates on each side. Note that this bar doesn’t work with Olympic weights. It doesn’t come with collars so you will need to buy them separately (though some sellers do give collars with this bar).
This bar is solid and balanced to give you a good workout. It should be mentioned that this bar is better for curling exercises, so if you want to do other exercises, you might need a different type.
The Best Bar Type for You
When you first start building a home gym, it’s good to buy equipment that gives you the most variety of movement with the least amount of money. These include adjustable dumbbell sets and other types of weights that allow for compound exercises. However, once your body starts to become stronger, you might want to get equipment that gives you heavier exercises such as squats, bench press, and deadlifts.
To do this, you can use weight bars. These bars by themselves don’t give you any strength training (but you can use them to practice your stability as a warm up). You have to add weight plates according to how heavy you want it to be. Setting up your home gym like this can become quite expensive, because you buy the equipment piece by piece. The benefit though is that you can adjust your weights as you improve your strength.
Each type of weight lifting bar can give you a specific type of exercise. In general though the purpose of these bars is to exercise as many muscles at once, so you save time in the gym.
Choose one type of bar for your first equipment. You might want to test out various exercises at a local gym so you can find out which bar type will be most appropriate for your weight lifting routine. If you decide not to go with weight bars, your other option is more expensive gym machines that focus more on isolation exercises. When you have one of these bars at your home, you can have more variable exercises that fit your needs.