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If you’re looking to amp up your strength training, then you need to start working with an Olympic bar. Fitness gurus, professional trainers, and athletes all agree that Olympic barbells and plates are crucial for building a strong body. Whether you use them at your local gym or invest in a set for your at-home gym, an Olympic barbell is a staple of fitness equipment for a reason. You can use one barbell and a set of weights with a variety of exercises to build full-body strength. You can target one zone at a time, or do compound movements to engage more than one muscle group.
Olympic Barbells Are Ideal for Any Fitness Goal
People have often associated Olympic barbells and benches with bodybuilder-esque physiques. The misconception is frequently “more weight, more muscle.” While this is technically true, the large, bulky muscles that people often relate Olympic barbells with taking a lot of time, discipline, and training to achieve. The average person who comes in and does a few sets of a challenging weight will build muscle, but it won’t be the size of Arnold Swarzenneger’s muscles.
In reality, strength training is for everyone and should be practiced regularly regardless of your fitness goals. Strength training with equipment like an Olympic barbell can help strengthen your stabilizer muscles. These muscles help to support your body and keep you balanced during your workout.
Strength training can also increase bone density, effectively making them stronger and less prone to breaks or fractures. This is especially important for the long-term. As we all get older, we can lose bone density and muscle mass. Increasing the density in our youth helps us out later in life when we’re older and a little weaker.
If your goal is to change your body composition, turn fat into muscle, then strength training is key. Muscle needs more calories to maintain. When your build more muscle, you increase your metabolism which is your body’s breakdown and absorption of calories and nutrients. Increasing your metabolism leads to fewer calories being stored as fat, helping you to achieve a leaner physique. Muscle tone gives you a stronger, slimmer look as well, so you don’t just feel lighter but you look leaner.
Strength training gets your blood pumping to provide oxygen to your muscles. When you work out with tools like an Olympic barbell, you’re still getting your cardio in. Other benefits of strength training include improved posture, stamina, and performance. Whatever your gender or fitness goals, when you add strength training to your regimen, it can boost all your efforts and help you achieve goals faster.
Benefits of Using Olympic Barbells for Strength Training
When it comes to strength training, a barbell can be significantly beneficial to use. If you’re unfamiliar with the types of workout equipment, a barbell is a long, metal bar that is thinner in the center for easy grip, and thicker on the ends( known as sleeves) to support weight plates. Barbells are great for practicing resistance training and can be used to target a variety of muscle groups. Barbells are fairly simple to use since you use both sides of your body when working with them, and the exercises are typically an up and down motion. You can use barbells for exercises that target a single muscle group, such as curls, or to complete compound exercises that engage multiple joints and muscles such as squats, chest presses, and deadlifts.
Since barbells are great tools for strength training, you can burn calories and build muscle mass, helping you to build the physique you want and achieve your fitness goals.
What to Consider When Shopping For Barbells
Before dropping money on the first barbell set you see, it’s important to consider your fitness level first. This is to help ensure that you’re able to handle your new equipment and that it is safe for you to use. You may not know this if you’ve only ever used a barbell at the gym, but there are three styles of barbells you can purchase: Standard/Men’s, Women’s, and Youth. Standard weighs 45lbs, Women weighs 35lbs, and Youth weighs 25lbs.
The next decision to make is the type of barbell:
General-use, Olympic, or Powerlifting.
A general-use barbell is what you might commonly see in someone’s garage or fitness room. They’re often between 5-6 feet long and don’t come in separate styles. These can usually support up to 200lbs.
Olympic barbells are larger in length and diameter to support more weight. These often come in standard or women’s styles. Often 7 feet long, Olympic barbells can support up to 500lbs. These are made for serious athletes with more experience and education such as cross-fitters.
Powerlifting barbells are designed for bodybuilders and people who know how to hold more weight. These bars are more rigid and can support up to 1200lbs.
How to Choose Weight Plates For Your Olympic Barbells.
Depending on what type of barbell you purchase, you’ll have to get the weight plates that fit correctly. Many times when you buy brand new, these can come in a set to make it easier to order. When you’re looking at plates, you also have some options to choose from; bumper plates or iron plates.
Bumper plates are made of thick, dense rubber. These make less noise than traditional iron plates and produce less damage to floors. However, these are slightly more expensive and are often much larger than iron plates.
In terms of weight sizes, it’s always good to start with the basics and move up from there. You can get a set that will include a pair of 10s, 25s, and 45s to get you on your way. All these weights, plus the weight of the bar totals out to 205lbs. Even if you’ve been practicing strength training with a barbell for years, this is a great warm-up set. Over time you can build on your set as your body gets stronger.
Each person has a different starting point and fitness goal. Having a good understanding of where you are and where you want to be is key to finding the right equipment.
How Much Do Barbells Cost?
The cost of your barbells often depends on what style and type you decide on, the types of plates you want, the brand and if you’re purchasing new or used. Regardless of your choices, barbells are a substantial investment that can cost anywhere from $100 to $1000+!
If you’re serious about your fitness, and you plan to maintain a regimen, then the investment is worthwhile and can last for decades when properly stored and used. If you’re still unsure about investing in a large barbell or which one to use, you may consider starting with a curl bar, like Archon Fitness EZ Curl Bar.
Archon Fitness’ EZ Curl Bar Elevated Olympic Barbells
A curl bar is much like a barbell, however, it’s significantly shorter, holds less weight, and is knurled, or wavy in the grip so your hands are angled rather than straight when you hold the bar.
Designed for a superior grip in a variety of exercises, the waves, or knurls of the EZ Curl Bar help you get the most comfort out of your workout, leading to better performance and greater results. You can activate your biceps and triceps more easily with the undulating handle.
EZ Curl bars are used for a variety of exercises such as preacher curls, reverse grip EZ curls, varied grip curls, overhead triceps extensions, upright rows, and many more.
The ARCHON EZ Curl Barbell has a CERAKOTE finish. This polymer-ceramic coating is harder, more resistant to corrosion, and will be a longer-lasting investment in your fitness equipment.
Why Should I Invest in a Home Gym?
When you’re working out and trying to take your fitness to the next level, it’s always important to ensure that you maintain your regular regimen and keep your improvement consistent. During the shutdowns and quarantines that resulted from the global pandemic, many people were at a loss and could not get the full workout they were accustomed to. Having a home gym could help you feel safer about your health, is a long-term investment, and can help you stay in shape no matter what happens with the operation of your local gym.
You don’t need a ton of equipment in your home gym, but to maintain a certain level of fitness you’ll need the basics: dumbbells, slam balls, plates, and a barbell. If you can invest in only one thing, invest in a barbell. Barbells are suitable for any fitness level since the weight can be easily adjusted with plates. As your fitness level increases, so can your weight or reps. Whether you’re looking to build bulk or lean muscle, barbells are an excellent piece of equipment that is essential for any home gym.
Comfort, Convenient, and Conditioning: Archon Fitness Olympic Barbells
At Archon Fitness, we believe that quality is crucial for maintaining your workout regimen. If you’re not comfortable using your equipment, you will be less likely to continue on your fitness journey. If you’re using high-quality equipment that feels good, works great, and helps you perform better then you’ll keep up your work and achieve your goals faster.
Archon Fitness provides everything for your home-gym needs. From Olympic barbells and balls to dumbells and cable machines, Archon is your one-stop shop for all equipment and any fitness level. Visit our website to check out our inventory and place your order today.