A barbell is one of the most important pieces of equipment you can train with, and I know many of you aren’t quite sure how much they weigh.
Going to a new gym and figuring out how much each type of bar weighs can be a pain.
So this guide will finally answer the question so many have, “how much does an Olympic barbell weigh?”
Also, here is my guide on the best barbells if you want to invest in your own bar for your home gym.
Let’s get started!
Table Of Contents
- 1 Olympic Barbell Vs. Standard Barbell Weight
- 2 Olympic Weightlifting Bar Weight
- 3 Specialty Bars
- 4 Other Bars
- 5 Olympic Bar vs. Standard Bar
- 6 Conclusion
Olympic Barbell Vs. Standard Barbell Weight
An Olympic barbell is a type of bar with 2″ sleeves to hold Bumper and Olympic weight plates.
They are also constructed of higher quality steel, the sleeves spin using bushing or bearings, and they hold much more weight.
If you’re not sure what any of this means – check out my barbell buying guide where I cover different types of bar finishes, barbells in general, and more!
An Olympic Barbell weighs 20kg or around 45 lbs on average.
There can be some variances, but this will generally be spot on.
Standard bars are smaller in all dimensions compared to Powerlifting and Olympic bars.
The most significant difference is the diameter of the collars, which can only hold 1″ weight plates.
Also, because they tend to have a smaller diameter shaft, they are nowhere near as strong as an Olympic barbell.
I would never recommend lifting with a standard barbell, even for beginners. It’s not worth the risk whatsoever.
A standard barbell weight is usually around 15-25 lbs, which explains why they’re less durable.
I’ve seen some standard barbells rated for up to 500 lbs, but I wouldn’t trust that at all.
As cheap as standard bars and plates are, you would think they’d be more popular, right?
The safety concerns with these smaller diameter standard barbells are too much to take lightly.
When in doubt, stick to Olympic weight plates and bars.
If you want to find the best weight plates for your garage gym, my guide on how to buy weight plates online & locally covers just that!
Olympic Weightlifting Bar Weight
Olympic weightlifting bars are different than standard Olympic bars. An Olympic barbell can refer to any barbell that can handle 2″ Olympic plates, such as a typical power bar, multipurpose bar, etc.
On the other hand, an
These tend to have bearings in the sleeves to allow for a much faster spin than bushing barbells provide.
The other main difference is that they usually come in men’s, women’s, technique, and kids’ variations.
Here’s how you can tell which one is which, as well as how much each of them weighs.
Men’s Olympic Barbells
Rogue’s 28MM Olympic Weightlifting Bar has been approved for use in all IWF-sanctioned competitions. Machined and assembled in Columbus, OH, each bar includes a 215K PSI steel shaft, quality needle bearings, and friction-welded chrome sleeves. With a center knurl and exclusive precision-machined knurl pattern, this bar offers a firm but non-abrasive grip.
Men’s Olympic weightlifting bars have a 28mm shaft that allows for more whip while performing Olympic lifts.
They weigh 20kg or 45 lbs, just like a regular Olympic bar.
If you want one of the best Olympic Weightlifting bars, check out Rogues’ best IWF version.
Women’s Olympic Barbells
The BOMBA BAR V3 WOMEN'S BARBELL is the perfect barbell for women. It has a 15kg bar weight and a 25mm diameter. The dual knurl marks provide a secure grip while you're lifting. The black CERAKOTE shaft coating protects the bar from rust and scratches, while the black zinc sleeve coating protects the sleeves from wear and tear. The tensile strength of the BOMBA BAR V3 WOMEN'S BARBELL is 206,000 PSI and has a lifetime warranty as well.
A women’s Olympic barbell has a much smaller 25mm shaft and weighs around 15kg, or 35 lbs on average, perfect for female lifters’ hands.
If you want one of the best women’s bar, Fringe Sport offers their Bomba Bar at a solid price point.
Technique Olympic Bars
Technique barbells are lighter-weight Olympic Weightlifting bars, typically constructed with aluminum.
These bars are designed for young and beginner lifters, warmups, rehab, and, as the name implies, technique practice.
Most of these barbells only have a tensile strength of around 42,000 PSI, so you shouldn’t load most of them up with weights over 50 lbs.
Kids’ bars usually weigh around 5 lbs, and a normal barbell weight for technique bars is between 15 and 45 lbs.
Safety Squat Bars
The Titan Safety Squat Bar – V2 is perfect for beginners! With its extra-thick shoulder pad, you can perform squats with ease and without worrying about injury. The shoulder pad also reduces pressure on your knees, making it a great choice for those just starting out. Additionally, the bar has a 1500 lb. weight capacity and comes with chrome sleeves and shaft coatings to help prevent rust.
The Safety Squat Bar is a fantastic tool to use in your strength training workouts. I use it with beginners to focus on the basic squat pattern and build some muscle.
A standard SSB weighs around 70 lbs on average. This is due to the handle and yoke that SSBs are known for.
Because Safety Squat Bars weigh more than a standard barbell, they tend to be stronger than any other run-of-the-mill bar you might find in a commercial gym.
If you have a choice between a crappy gym bar and an SSB, pick the safety squat bar every day!
The KABUKI Strength Trap Bar HD is the Cadillac of trap bars. Built with a bar jack for easy loading and unloading, an open design to allow for a variety of movements, and interchangeable grips and handle brackets, this trap bar is perfect for any workout. The in-hand design is balanced for both handles, and the sleeves are machined and full-length with a signature end cap. The KABUKI STRENGTH trap bar HD is also built to last, with a heavy-duty build that can support up to 1500lbs.
The standard weight varies quite a bit for a traditional Trap Bar! Some weigh 45 lbs, 55 lbs, 65 lbs, and even 75 lbs.
So when in doubt, just buy a bar and track each of your movements the same. Each bar weighs 45 lbs, and the extra weight doesn’t matter much at all.
Plus, tracking your training is a much smaller headache, I promise.
If you want something built like a tank, you can go with Rogues.
Most trap barbells I looked at only have a weight capacity of 500 lbs, I wanted a Trap Bar that was rated for at least 1,000 lbs, and that’s what I got. For the money, I can’t imagine getting a more quality bar.
However, when buying a Trap bar, make sure the sleeves are long enough to hold the weight you plan on lifting.
If you have basic bumper plates, you might have difficulty loading them up as they’re usually pretty wide.
The Rep Cambered Swiss Multi-Grip Barbell is a versatile tool that allows you to work out with a greater range of motion. The multi-grip design also allows for different grips to let you target specific muscle groups. The bar has moderate knurled handles for grip, and round tubing prevents any discomfort. Plus, you can also use it as a cable attachment! The weight capacity of 810 lbs makes this barbell perfect for anyone, from beginners to experienced lifters alike.
Swiss, or Multi-Grip bars, as they’re commonly called, are a type of versatile specialty bar that allows you to press from neutral or angled positions depending on the company making them.
I found some of the most popular ones that I recommend and averaged out how much they weigh in lbs or kgs.
|Brand Model||Weight in Lbs||Weight in Kg|
|Archon Multi-Grip Olympic Bar||30||13.64|
|Fringe Sport Multi-Grip Swiss Barbell||46||20.91|
|Get RX’d Multi-Grip Bar 3.0||47||21.37|
|Rep Fitness Cambered Swiss Bar||45||20.46|
|Synergee Multi-Grip Swiss Bar||27||12.28|
|Titan Fitness Angled Multi-Grip Barbell||48||21.82|
|Titan Fitness Multi-Grip Barbell V2||45||20.46|
|Titan Fitness Multi-Grip Camber Bar||47||21.37|
As you can see, Swiss bars can weigh between 27 and 48 lbs, or 12.28 and 21.82 kgs. This is an average of 41.67 lbs or 18.91 kgs.
Luckily, this is a pretty small range, so you can be sure your Multi-Grip bar will be in the same 10-20 lb range.
EZ Curl Bar
REP Fitness Rackable Curl Bar allows you to do curls the right way. It has a longer shaft of 74" and allows you to rack it in standard-width power racks. This curl bar also has a bend in the shaft which gives you a semi-supinated grip position and helps to limit stress on wrists and elbows, thus reducing common injury risks. The bar weighs 35lbs with a hybrid needle bearing and bushing sleeves that offer spin and stability. This bar is offered with a hard chrome finish that is more durable than standard chrome, as well as a stainless steel option that is incredibly rust-resistant.
Most Olympic curl barbells weigh anywhere between 18-25 lbs, and the best ones can hold up to 300 lbs.
Compared to straight Olympic barbells, the primary benefit of using this type of bar is doing curls and extensions.
The ergonomic handle keeps your wrists in a more natural position and allows you to train your arms better than a straight bar.
Plus, they don’t have to be super expensive, either!
Smith Machine Bar
Most people would not recommend using a smith machine if your goal is strength, and I agree with them.
For hypertrophy, though, there’s just more variation you can use to train each muscle group effectively.
But what we’re here for is how much different bars weigh.
A Smith Machine bar has 1 of 2 ways they are structured.
It either comes with a counterweight, or it’s practically free-floating.
If it is a counterweight, the industry average is around 15 lbs to ensure the bar doesn’t just glide away with no weight on it.
The free-floating smith machines are, on average, 45 lbs.
Regardless, I recommend tracking all of these barbells as 45 lbs as the barbell math is much easier.
As long as you track your progress from workout to workout, it really won’t matter much in the end.
Just pick one standard and stick with it.
Olympic Bar vs. Standard Bar
Please don’t make a mistake and think standard barbells are good enough because they are not!
There isn’t much comparison regarding the durability and usability of Olympic Bars vs. Standard Bars.
Olympic barbells feature higher-gauge steel, and the knurling will always be better, which is essential for safety.
And on top of that, you can’t add as much weight to a standard bar as they use smaller plates than the weights Olympic bars use.
If your main goal is training heavy barbell movements such as Squats, Deadlifts, etc., I strongly encourage you to get an Olympic barbell as it will be much safer with heavier weights.
You can even invest in a power bar for all lifts – or a less versatile specialty Olympic bar such as a squat, bench, or deadlift bar.
However, standard bars do have their place.
If you wanted to pick one up and get a set of standard plates with them, you’d be able to do many biceps, triceps, shoulders, and other lighter movement variations much cheaper than an Olympic barbell.
If you choose between the two, go for the Olympic barbell as it has more uses and will last forever.
They’re more durable, allow you to lift more weight, and keep you safer.
Seriously, if you buy a good bar from somebody like Rogue, you’ll rarely have to replace it.
Whereas standard barbells have a smaller diameter, they aren’t nearly as long.
However, if you’re on a budget and need something fast, it’s better than nothing.
Just make sure you know the limits of the bar before you start trying to deadlift with it.
Now I turn it over to you!
Knowing how much Olympic and other bars weigh in your gym, do you feel more confident?
Let me know in the comments below right now!