We understand a barbell is not a cheap product and buying one is a multi-year investment, so it’s important to purchase the right bar for your lifting needs. If you’re new to buying a barbell you can quickly find out that there is more to learn than you expected. Whether you’re an Olympic weightlifter, powerlifter, strongman, CrossFitter or just enjoy strength training in general, each type of lifting requires a slightly different bar.
When shopping for a barbell, its important to determine the type of training you’ll be doing and then select a barbell that best compliments your movements and lifting goals.
Olympic / Standard Barbells
An Olympic barbell is the most commonly found barbell in any gym and is used as a standard in competitive weightlifting. They contain less aggressive knurling providing ample grip to feel secure in your lift, but not enough to tear your hands in the transition of movements. On both ends of the bar are rotating sleeves on which weight plates are placed. These rotating sleeves allow the plates to spin freely while maintaining your grip on the bar which is an essential component of several lifts.
A men’s Olympic barbell is 2200mm long (7.2 feet) and weighs 20 kilograms (roughly 44lbs). The 415mm sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter and makeup about 1.3 meters of the bar’s total length. AlphaFit offers two kinds of men's olympic bars: 20kg Endure Barbell and 20kg Endure Black Barbell.
The women’s Olympic barbell is slightly shorter than the men's at 2100mm long (6.9 feet) and weighs 15 kilograms (roughly 33lbs). The sleeves are 50mm in diameter and 320mm in length. The shaft is also slightly thinner at 25mm creating a more secure grip for lifters with smaller hands. The 15kg Endure Barbell and 15kg Endure Black Barbell are our two options for women's olympic lifting.
AlphaFit's Shorty Barbells are a more compact version of a standard Olympic barbell. This shorter version is designed for competition use to allow athletes to be spaced closer together. This adjustment to the bar length also benefits anyone training in small spaces such as a home gym or busy commercial facility. Our Shorty Bars perform to the standards of a traditional Olympic barbell but are each over 300mm shorter in length.
Unlike other "shorty" versions on the market, AlphaFit Shorty Barbells do not compromise on the distance between the sleeve collars. This ensures lifters do not need to adjust their grip and will feel comfortable transitioning between this and a standard Olympic bar.
A men’s Shorty Barbell is 1880mm long (6.2 feet) and weighs 15 kilograms (roughly 33lbs). The shorter 265mm sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter and makeup about 1.3 meters of the bar’s total length.
The women’s Shorty Barbell is slightly shorter at 1830mm long (6.9 feet) and weighs 12.5 kilograms (roughly 27lbs). The sleeves are 50mm in diameter and 240mm in length. The shaft is also slightly thinner at 25mm creating a more secure grip for lifters with smaller hands.
Big lifts come from solid foundations, and those foundations are built on great technique. The Technique Barbell is a low starting weight making it perfect for beginners or those looking to perfect their lifting technique and posture. Replicating the feeling of an Olympic barbell, it allows a smooth transition and progression to a heavier standard bar.
The Technique Barbell is 1830mm long (6.9 feet) and weighs 8 kilograms; about 17.3lbs. The sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter and makeup about 1.3 meters of the bar’s total length. Often found in the hands of young athletes or those new to lifting, Technique Bars are also great for warm up, cool down and rehab work.
AlphaFit 20kg Endure Black Barbell
AlphaFit 12.5kg Shorty Barbell
AlphaFit Technique Barbell. Credit: Adrian Fowler
A standard barbell does little to strengthen your hands and wrists unless you are lifting particularly heavy loads. A fat barbell, also known as an axle bar, promotes greater wrist and grip strength by offering a thicker surface area to grip. Fat bars are often found at strongman events as they add a whole new dimension of difficulty to lifts. These powdercoated barbells emphasise the use of muscles in the hands in a way standard bars simply can't.
The Fat Barbell 2200mm (7.2 feet) aims to replicate the length of a typical men's Olympic bar and weighs 12.3 kilograms (roughly 27lbs). The 420mm sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 43.8mm in diameter – larger than the 28mm on standard barbells. The distance between sleeve collars is 1300mm.
In addition we offer a slightly shorter, stubby Fat Barbell at 1670mm long (5.8 feet) that weighs 9.5 kilograms (roughly 21lbs). This condensed option was created with a competition setting in mind. The grip of the shaft is also larger than the standard 28mm diameter on mens Olympic barbells measuring 43.8mm in diameter. The sleeves provide 200mm loadable length and distance between sleeve collars is 1250mm.
Safety Squat Barbells
The Safety Squat Barbell is supported using your hands in a neutral grip with the weight evenly distributed through the pads across your shoulders and back. Your spine position is more vertical, looking more like a front squat or a high-bar back squat. The attribute that sets this bar apart from a standard barbell is the ability to create a more “neutral” position through the shoulder complex, allowing athletes with shoulder mobility/stability and impingement issues to lift safely and comfortably.
AlphaFit's Safety Squat Bar is 2270mm long (7.4 feet) and weighs 21 kilograms (roughly 46lbs). The sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter.
The Hex Deadlift Bar, also known as a trap bar, is a favourite specialty bar amongst S&C coaches for building strength and explosive power whilst minimising the risk of injury. The hex frame helps athletes keep the weight closer to their body making it more aligned with your centre of gravity. Standing within the frame, athletes can maximise their lifting power through a range of movements including deadlifts, shrugs and carries.
The Hex Barbell is 1630 mm long (5.3 feet) and weighs 22.5 kilograms (roughly 49lbs). The sleeves are 48 mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28 mm in diameter.
The Rickshaw Barbell resembles a similar design as the Hex Deadlift Barbell with one slight but important design change – an open, step through side. This feature allows the bar to be even more functional and versatile allowing the lifter to not only enter and exit the bar with ease but also provide a greater range of motion and offer a wider variety of exercises.
The Rickshaw Barbell is 1420 mm long (4.6 feet) and weighs 18 kilograms (roughly 39lbs). The sleeves are 48mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter.
AlphaFit Fat Barbell
AlphaFit Safety Squat Barbell
AlphaFit Hex Deadlift Barbell
The Swiss Bar, sometimes known as a football bar or multi-grip bar, is a favourite specialty bar amongst strength coaches particulary for bench exercises as it reduces the amount of external rotation on the shoulders. It features four different grips to help athletes target more muscle groups over a range of movements for the chest, arms and shoulders.
The Swiss Barbell is 2130mm long (7 feet) and weighs 25.5 kilograms (roughly 56lbs). The sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter.
As the name suggests, curl bars are designed for bicep curls. The curl in the shaft allows athletes to hold the bar in a more natural setup with their palms angled upward and toward each other in a semi-neutral position. This reduces the risk of common injuries that people develop overtime when using a straight bar to curl such as Lateral Epicondylitis - golfers elbow, caused by the repetitive use of wrist extendors.
The Curl Barbell is 1250mm long (4.1 feet) and weighs 7.5 kilograms (roughly 16.5lbs). The sleeves are 50mm in diameter, and the shaft is 28mm in diameter.
Coming in at 1140mm in length, the 2.2kg AlphaFit Kids Barbell has been designed with a maximum load capacity of 25kg. Built for technique purposes, AlphaFit’s Kids Barbell offers a fun, unique fabricated bar made from from 6061 T6, often referred to as "Aircraft Grade Aluminium". This material is commonly used in aluminium structures due to its relatively high yield strength. Designed to be used with Fractional or Change Plates, the machined mini barbell sleeves are fixed and do not spin.
Fixed Weight Barbells
Fixed weight barbells save you time on changing plates, making them a convenient piece of equipment for home and commercial gyms. They come in a variety of weights in both straight bar and curl bar options and are commonly used in circuit training due to their compact nature.
The AlphaFit Fixed Weight Straight Bar and Curl Bar are constructed from hardened chrome and feature soft-medium knurling for a comfortable grip. The fixed weights are coated with a black matte polyurethane that is designed to endure and come in a range of sizes from 10kg - 50kg
*Please note the barbell specifications in this document reflect AlphaFit branded barbells and may differ brand to brand.