The 10 Best Barbells
This wiki has been updated 8 times since it was first published in January of 2020. Whether you're trying to build muscle through heavy weight lifting or just adding some light resistance to an aerobic circuit, a barbell is one of the best tools to have at your disposal. The various models on our list can support a wide array of fitness goals, and as long as they're used with proper caution, these extremely versatile pieces of gear can benefit almost anyone's exercise routine. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
May 03, 2021:
In a space that’s saturated with identical-looking options, we thought the last editor for this page did a nice job of putting together a comprehensive list of outside-the-box options that really ran the gamut of the category — like the modular Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells, and the non-adjustable Synergee Fixed Barbell. However, we were disappointed to see that two key items on this list – the Titan Fitness Olympic Bar and Valor Fitness OB-MULTI Swiss Bar – were suffering from availability issues, so we quickly busied ourselves finding appropriate substitutes. We also eliminated the Marcy TRB-72.2, which supported standard plates and had a limited capacity, in favor of the CAP Master, which is much more capable and backed by a five-year warranty.
The Titan Fitness Olympic Bar was replaced by the Synergee Regional Olympic, which is available with both black-phosphate and chrome finishes. Thirty-three- and 44-pound versions of this bar are available, and both are rated to support a maximum of 1,500 pounds. It even comes with a bonus pair of lifting straps.
The Valor Fitness OB-MULTI Swiss Bar was replaced by the Titan Fitness Multi-Grip V2, which boasts a 1,900-pound capacity and offers three grip options. If your home-gym setup is only going to have one bar, this might not be ideal. But if you’ve already got a decent straight bar, then its sleek, black, powder-coated finish ensures that this bar will make a great-looking addition to your arsenal.
Speaking of building out your home gym, if that’s a project you’re in the process of right now, then you might also be interested in checking out some more of our related rankings. We’ve got lists of curl bars, dumbbells, weight racks, gym flooring and more.
February 12, 2020:
For this article we focused on straight bars, since they are what people often first picture when they think of a barbell. Even within this relatively simple category there's still quite a bit of range. For instance, models like the Marcy TRB-72.2 or The Step Club Quality Barbell Set are good for those who want to do some medium-intensity exercise in their room without taking up too much space, whereas these probably won't cut it for serious lifters who have a whole home gym taking over their garage. For this type of person something like the Titan Fitness Olympic Bar is much more appropriate.
Besides a range of classic bars, I also included a couple variations that some will find are more applicable for their particular needs. People who aren't interested in heavy lifting and simply want to incorporate some light weight resistance into their aerobic exercises will find that choices like the Yes4All Total Body Workout Weighted Bar or Synergee Fixed Barbell offer all the benefits of a traditional design, but without the hassle of dealing with weight plates or collars before and after each workout. Alternative handle designs like those on the Marcy SOC-49 or Valor Fitness OB-MULTI Swiss Bar might be more useful for lifters who are focused on bicep and tricep exercises, or those who just have a hard time dealing with the poor ergonomics of straight bars. If you find that these less standard options sound better for your situation, it's worth checking out our other articles that go more in depth on weighted bars and curl bars specifically.
If you end up choosing a bar the isn't packaged with weights and accessories and you have to order them separately, make sure to check that the plates and collars you find are the correct size for your chosen unit. If this barbell is just your first step in establishing a robust home gym, our articles on associated items like dumbbells, weight racks, and weight benches can help you determine what other exercise equipment will best support your goals.
If you're new to lifting or have never done it outside of a gym, it's important to review instructions and guidelines regarding the safe operation of any of these products. They might seem simple, but heavy weights can easily become dangerous if not used with care.
Rogue Fitness Ohio Bar It's decently more expensive than many others available online, but it would be simply neglectful to leave this brand out of an article on barbells for home use. This bar is often the stick against which other consumer models are measured, and those interested in paying a premium for a top-shelf product should check out the Ohio Bar, as well as various other high-quality offerings from Rogue Fitness. roguefitness.com
Bowflex SelectTech 2080 This adjustable unit presents a compact solution for users looking to improve their home gyms without significantly increasing their footprint. It comes with a straight barbell, as well as a curl bar, and offers weight options between 20 and 80 pounds. bowflex.com