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What is a Barbell Bar?

Article Details
  • Written By: L. Roux
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 19 October 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2019
    Conjecture Corporation
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A barbell bar is a steel bar with weight plates on either end that is typically used for weight training. It usually measures around 5- to 7-feet (about 150 to 210 cm) long and can vary between 15 pounds (about 6.8 kg) and 45 pounds (about 20.5 kg). Barbell bars are about 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter and can accommodate various-sized weight plates at each end.

A barbell is usually used to perform various strength-training exercises like bench presses, barbell presses and standing curls. Beginners can also perform these exercises using only the barbell bar without any weight plates attached. Using only the bar will help athletes to practice the correct movement of each exercise and also allow them to gradually add more weight as needed. The weight plates are secured at each end by collars, which weigh about 5 pounds (about 2.3 kg), to prevent them from sliding off during training, which can cause injuries.

A barbell bar is usually very popular amongst athletes because of the fact that they can add as many weight plates as needed. This, in turn, provides a suitable workout for athletes on all fitness levels. A women's bar is typically shorter and lighter with a thinner grip section.

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Other types of barbell bars include the triceps bar, a cage with handles that run parallel to each other that is used often for triceps extensions. The EZ curl bar has a curved profile in the grip area, which provides better wrist support and can cut the risk of repetitive stress injury. The thick-handled bar, common in strength competitions, works on the grip the user has on it.

Another barbell bar option is the Olympic-sized version, which consists of a bar in which the sleeves rotate. These bars are usually about 7-feet (about 210 cm) long and weigh about 45 pounds (about 20 kg). They are typically accompanied by a set of Olympic-size weight plates of which the center holes are slightly bigger to fit the Olympic barbell bar. These weights can also be bought separately and then added to the barbell bar until the desired weight for an exercise has been reached.

In addition to Olympic barbell bars, powerlifting can often require the use of a stronger bar to better accommodate the use of heavy weights. These bars are usually longer and thicker to allow the loading of more plates. The grip marks on these bars are also spaced closer to each other.

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