Unlocking the Mystery: The Guide to Different Types of Weightlifting Bars


Regarding weightlifting, the barbell is the ideal tool at the heart of strength training. However, many gym-goers may not realize that not all barbells are created equal. A vast array of weightlifting bars are designed to serve a specific purpose and cater to other training goals.

Each bar type is designed for a specific purpose, and choosing the right one can make a big difference in your workout. Some bars are better for powerlifting, while others are designed for Olympic lifting.

Let’s get to know your bars. In weightlifting, these are your best friends, after all.

Standard Bars

Regarding weightlifting, the barbell is one of the most essential equipment. There are many different types of weightlifting bars, each with unique features and benefits. This section’ll look closer at standard bars and their subtypes.

Olympic Bar

The Olympic bar is the most common standard bar used in weightlifting. It is seven feet long and weighs forty-five pounds. The bar has a diameter of twenty-eight mm and can hold up to 1,500 pounds.

Olympic bars are designed for snatch, clean and jerk, and other lifts. They have a moderate amount of whip, allowing explosive movements and quick transitions.

Powerlifting Bar

The powerlifting bar is similar to the Olympic bar but stiffer and more rigid. It is also seven feet long and weighs forty-five pounds. The bar has a diameter of twenty-nine mm and can hold up to 1,500 pounds. Powerlifting bars are designed for the squat, bench press, and deadlift. They have less whip than Olympic bars, which allows for more stability and control during heavy lifts.

Overall, standard bars are an excellent choice for any weightlifting program. They are versatile, durable, and can handle heavy loads. Rookie or experienced, a standard bar is a must-have for your home gym or commercial facility.

Specialty Bars

There are three kinds of specialty bars: the trap bar, the cambered bar, and the safety squat bar.

Trap Bar

A bar that can help you lift heavy weights without putting too much stress on your lower back, you say? The trap bar is a great option.

This hexagonal-shaped bar allows you to stand in the middle of the weight, reducing the stress on your spine. Plus, the trap bar allows you to use more weight when performing exercises like deadlifts and shrugs, making it an excellent choice for building overall strength.

Cambered Bar

This is a specialty bar that has a slight curve in the middle. This curve allows you to perform exercises like squats and bench presses with a more natural range of motion (ROM), which can reduce the risk of injury.

Additionally, the cambered bar emphasizes your core muscles, making it an excellent tool for building overall strength and stability.

Safety Squat Bar

The safety squat bar is an excellent option if you’re looking for a bar to help you perform squats with less strain on your shoulders and wrists.

This bar has two handles you can hold onto, reducing the stress on your upper body. The safety squat bar also focuses on your quads and glutes, making it a great tool for building lower body strength.


Women’s Bars

Women have the training and technique bars they can use for their weightlifting routine. Here is an elaboration of each of them.

Training Bar

A training bar is a great option if you’re looking for a weightlifting bar specifically designed for women. These bars are lighter and shorter than standard bars, making them easier to handle for those with smaller hands. They also have a slightly smaller diameter, making them more comfortable to grip.

Training bars are perfect for beginners or those just starting out with weightlifting. They’re great for those who want to focus on technique and form, allowing you to practice your lifts without worrying about weight.

Technique Bar

A technique bar is another great option for women seeking a weightlifting bar. These bars are similar to training bars because they’re lighter and shorter than standard bars. However, they’re designed specifically for practicing technique and form.

Technique bars are great for those looking to improve their lifts without adding too much weight. They’re also great for people recovering from an injury, as they allow you to practice your lifts without putting too much strain on your body.

In conclusion, if you’re a woman looking for a weightlifting bar, a training bar, or a technique bar are both great options. They’re designed specifically for women and can help you improve your technique and form without putting too much strain on your body.


Factors including the type of lifts you’ll perform, your experience level, and your budget are critical to helping you choose the perfect weightlifting bar.

With the vast array of options available, kindly understand the differences between each bar type to help you decide. Olympic bars are excellent for powerlifting and Olympic lifting, while powerlifting bars are ideal for heavy squats and bench presses.

If you’re new to lifting, a standard bar is an excellent choice, as it’s affordable and versatile. However, investing in a specialty bar can help you achieve your goals if you want to take your lifting to the next level.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a powerlifting bar and an Olympic weightlifting bar?

Powerlifting bars are stiffer and have less whip than Olympic weightlifting bars. Powerlifting bars are designed for slower, heavier lifts, while Olympic weightlifting bars are designed for faster, explosive lifts. Powerlifting bars also typically have more aggressive knurling to help with grip during heavy lifts.

Can I use a weightlifting bar for the bench press?

Yes, you can use a weightlifting bar for bench presses. However, powerlifting bars are typically better for bench presses because they have less whip and are stiffer, which provides more stability during the lift. If you’re a powerlifter, you may prefer a powerlifting bar for competition. If you’re a weightlifter, a weightlifting bar will work just fine.

What is a safety squat bar?

A safety squat bar is a specialty bar designed to make squatting more comfortable and accessible for lifters with shoulder or wrist mobility issues.

Safety squat bars have a padded yoke on the lifter’s shoulders and handle that allows them to hold the bar without putting stress on their wrists.

Safety squat bars also have a cambered design that shifts the weight forward, making it easier to keep your torso upright during the squat.

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