So you arrive at the gym and you’re just getting started on your workout. You find yourself over on the benchpress or on the squat rack and you notice that you are starting to rack up quite a bit of weight plates on the bar.
You are trying to figure out just how much you are lifting.. You know how much the weight plates weigh but you don’t know exactly how much the bar itself weighs.. Yeah frustrating and confusing huh?
To add on to this, not only do you not know how much the barbell weighs but even if you did, its not the same at every gym as most gyms’ barbells all have different weights.
And keep in mind each type of barbell will also vary in weight.
The good news is you ended up here and we are going to go over the different types of bars and just how much each type of bar weighs
Different Types of Weight Lifting Bars & Their Weights
Weightlifting bars come in a myriad of shapes, sizes and designs. That can make picking the perfect bar for your lifting needs quite a challenge. Thankfully, with a bit of information on what works where, that won’t have to be the case anymore.
Listed below are the different types of weight lifting bars, what they are used for, and their listed weights.
Standard Barbell / Bench Press bar – Weighs 45 lbs.
The standard barbell, the one that looks like this, is the one that most of you will come in contact with for the majority of your workouts. This is the bar that you will find on the incline, decline, shoulder press machine, at most squat racks and is the bar most used for bench press.
The standard barbell comes in at about 6.5 – 7 Feet long and weighs in at 45 pounds. The standard barbells usually have a weight capacity of around 650 pounds.
So if you are over at the benchpress for example and you have two 45 pound weight plates loaded up on the ends of the bar then you are benching a total weight of 135 pounds.
Olympic Weight Lifting Bar – Weighs 44 lbs.
Yeah a lot of people may think this but they would be wrong in doing so. The olympic bar does indeed differ from the standard in both weight and function.
Olympic bars have 2 inch rotating stocks at the end vs the 1 inch non-rotating stocks found at the end of the standard barbells.
Olympic barbells weigh 44 pounds, are about 7 feet long, and can support anywhere from 700 pounds to 2000 pounds.
Safety Squat Bar – Weighs 60-65 lbs
The safety Squat bar, this weird looking thing here, is a bar that most people order to use in home gym setups but can also be found in your local gym. They differ from the standard bar in quite a few ways.
One way being that they have handles that come down vertically from the center part of the bar and allow you to grasp them with your hands for better support of the weight and to allow you to balance a bit better when squatting heavy weight.
Safety Squat bars also have a curvature to them that is different than straight bars, as they curve at about a 45 degree angle at the ends to keep the weight balanced on your shoulders.
Safety squat bars weigh in at about 60-65 pounds.
Trap Bar / Hex Bar – Weigh 30-65 lbs
The trap bar (A.K.A. hex bar) is a fairly common type of bar and is one that you will find at most gyms and weight lifting centers. Here is what a typical one looks like.
It has a unique design that you stand inside of and hold onto with your hands.
This bar is designed to help you work your trapezius and upper back muscles. Trap bars vary in weight but most trap bars weigh 45 pounds.
Cambered Bar / Angled Squat Bar
Most people may have never heard of the Cambered bar (like the Cap Barbell Olympic Curl bar or even this Rogue Fitness one, for example) and this is because it is not common like most of the other bars. Although there are a few different types of cambered bars that are used for different exercises such as cambered bar curls and tricep extensions, most cambered bars are used for squats.
A cambered bar is simply just a different type of squat bar that is angled so that advanced lifters can improve their squatting technique.
Cambered bars weight is about 45 pounds.
Standard Bar Vs Olympic Bar
Listed below are the differences in between the olympic bar and the standard bar along with the weights of each.
A standard barbell is what you will find at most gyms and rec centers either on the squat rack or over at the bench press station. Standard barbells are designed with 1 inch sleeves that do not rotate.
The Standard bar weighs 45 pounds.
You will typically only find 1 or 2 of these in major gyms and rec centers as these bars are usually found at lifting meets and at competitions for heavy power lifters.
The design feature that makes the olympic bars different than the standard bar is that olympic barbells have 2 inch rotating sleeves on the end. The sleeve is the part of the bar that is found at the end and is there for you to load your weight plates onto.
The olympic bar weighs in at 44 pounds.
Are There Smaller, Lighter Barbells for Women?
Of course, there are some that are cut out specifically for women and youths. After all, when it comes to it, we are all a little different in fitness.
Even without any consideration on the fitness levels, it’s just natural that most women tend to have smaller hands than men.
Some manufacturers have moved that extra mile to make sure there is something for everyone in the world of weight lifting, thanks to such types of bars like the 15Kg, 25mm thick Women’s Bar by Rogue Fitness.
And yes, it boasts of some cool specs, too!
Apart from it being a short barbell and it being light in weight, this bar is pretty much everything the others are when it comes down to features like the brass bushings/bearings. However, it lacks the center knurling. So if you prefer a bar with this particular feature, then this might not be the one for you, I would recommend this to a beginner doing cleans or power cleans since it’s light weight and won’t have the same impact as a regular barbell, also for doing high pulls or upright rows this barbell would what I start with.
Using Similar Plates on Either Bar; Can You?
This has been a subject for discussion in the weight lifting sphere for decades. You see, the only thing standing in your way is the width differences in both bars, you know, the one we’ve mentioned above.
It is thus virtually impossible to use a regular weight plate (with their 1-inch hole) on your Olympic barbell. But on vice-versa, fitting the wider diameter Olympic plates on a regular barbell shouldn’t be a problem.
Well, to be honest, it might just be somewhat of a challenge, but an Olympic adapter sleeve makes for an ingenious quick fix.
The only catch with the use of an Olympic bar is the weight, which makes it a less preferable option for your average gym user. Seems you will hardly need to use these bars for regular lifting needs. But hey, if you ever have to improvise, then you know how to go about it.
Does the Bar Count as Weight When Lifting?
Many of you beginners and newbies to the weight lifting and strength training world might ask yourself if the weight of the bar really matters when benching, squatting or when performing any type of exercise.
Yes! The weight of the bar is counted as weight when performing lifts whether in the gym or at a weight lifting competition. No matter the type of bar the weight is always counted.
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