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10 Types of Barbells You Should Know

Planning to build some muscles and start your weightlifting journey? Let us discuss the types of barbells and find out which bar best fits your lifting needs.

There are several barbell types you can find in your gym. Lifting barbells come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and barbell weights

Each has different and unique qualities, specifically designed for different purposes and targets different areas of your body. They are designed to increase your endurance, strength, and power. 


Here are the 10 types of barbells that you can find in a gym near you.

1. Standard Barbell - Your basic weightlifting bar.

Standard barbells are the most common type of barbell. These straight bars are used for basic lifts such as overhead press, squat, bench press, hip thrusts, and deadlift. 

Typical Weight: 45 lbs or less
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: Versatile and cheap.
Cons: Not suitable for powerlifting.

2. Powerlifting Bar - Your strong powerlifting bar.

Powerlifting bars are somewhat like Olympic bars except for the fact that Olympic bars have a slight flex while powerlifting bars are rigid and specially built to be much stronger to hold heavier weights. They are made for squatting, deadlifting, and bench pressing. 

Typical Weight: 55 lbs.
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: Great for lifters with extremely heavyweights.
Cons: Not recommended for regular lifters and beginners.

3. Deadlift Bar - Your ally in improving deadlift strength.

Deadlift bars are special bars that have a much thinner and longer body compared to Olympic bars. 

It has deeper etched grips, essential for deadlift workouts. It is also designed to hold tons of weight. 

Typical Weight: Average of 45 lbs. 
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: It has the ability to hold tons of weights.
Cons: Expensive and specifically built for deadlifts.

4. Olympic Weightlifting Barbell - For more technical lifting techniques.

The Olympic Weightlifting Bar is a straight bar that looks like your typical standard barbell but has some special features in it. The bar collars you find at each end of the bar have the ability to spin to assist weightlifters with their movements.

They are much thicker compared to standard barbells, so specific weights must be used.

Typical Weight: Average of 33 to 45 lbs. 
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: Suitable for explosive movements 
Cons: The thick bar collars need special plates.

5. Swiss or Football Bar - Great for isolation moves.

A Swiss or football bar is a specialty type of barbell that can be used in a variety of lifting exercises. These barbells allow you to have a more neutral grip. It helps athletes with limited shoulder and upper-body mobility. It is commonly used for rowing, pressing, and other arm and torso workouts. 

Typical Weight: Average of 35 lbs.
Grip Type: Multi-grip
Pros: Versatile and helpful for those athletes with upper-body problems.
Cons: It can only hold less weight due to its small size.

6. Hex or Trap Bar - For varied deadlift moves. 

Hex or Trap Bar is ideally designed for conventional deadlifts training. It has a geometric shape that has parallel and knurled handles. It is easy to use and is a great accessory to perfect your deadlift forms. 

Typical Weight: Average of 30 to 70 lbs.
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: Help you improve your deadlift strengths.
Cons: Not versatile unlike standard barbells and a bit pricey. 

7. EZ or Curl Bar - Your easy-to-use lifting bar. 

EZ or Curl Bar, is specifically designed for arm exercises and is best for your bicep curls. The bends in the bar help to limit the stress on your wrist while using it. They are smaller and lighter compared to other barbells. 

Typical Weight: Average of 15 lbs.
Grip Type: Knurled
Pros: This allows you to target arm muscles easily.
Cons: Has limited exercise functionality.

8. Log Bar - The bar for strongman competitions.

Log bars are one of the heaviest barbells. They are extremely bulky, heavy-duty bars made for maximum strength. It is the reason why you only find these bars at specialty strength gyms. It is specially designed for experienced and professional lifters.

Typical Weight: 1200 lbs.
Pros: Allows you to feel comfortable even when lifting extremely heavy bars.
Cons: It is recommended for advanced lifters only and not for beginners.

9. Safety Squat Bar - Your safety squat barbell.

The Safety Squat Bar puts less pressure on your shoulders compared to standard barbells, allowing you to squat even if you have an upper-body injury. They are usually heavier than standard barbells. They can be used in almost all sorts of lower-body moves, such as lunges and split squats. 

Typical Weight: Average of 60 to 65 lbs.
Grip type: Padded
Pros: Good for beginners in squatting.
Cons: Limited availability because they are a bit expensive.

10. Arched or Cambered Bar - A whole new experience of standard squatting.

The arched or cambered bar targets the hamstrings and lower back. This barbell allows you to stay vertical while doing your lower-body workouts, such as squats. These are designed for more experienced weightlifters and are great for lifters suffering from shoulder pain. 

Typical Weight: Average of 45 lbs.
Pros: Great for training your lower back and has the ability to hold a lot of weight.
Cons: Not easy to find and a bit pricey.

A woman weightlifter with her trainer is about to lift weights

Key Takeaways

The above types of barbells for weightlifting exercises were the typical barbells you will find in the gym as you do your lifting workout routines. I hope the above discussions were able to help you determine each barbell's purpose and how it can benefit you as a lifter.  

Start choosing the right set of barbells for you and start building those muscles now.
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