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What weight for home gym [Article, Video]

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

Mar 1, 2020 9:00:00 AM

bodybuilder working out with bumbbells weights at the gym-2

What weight for home gym

Most likely it will be steel plates or bumper plates. Bumpers if you mainly lift overhead and steel when you are more into powerlifting.
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Bumper plates

Bumper plates are good value for money and work in most scenarios. You can use them outside and indoors. Bumper plates will also be easy on your fingers and toes in case you drop the plates on them. They are more prone to leave coloring stains on walls and are less likely to break than other plates. Their biggest drawback is that you can not fit a lot of them on a regular barbell. With bumper plates, an average bar is usually maxed out around 200kg.

Competition plates

Competition plates are the most expensive option. They are combined material of rubber and metal. The color-coding makes them look cooler. The metal in the middle helps to center the mass which makes them better for the clean and jerk and snatch. Compared to regular bumper plates the vendors will also take more care to deliver the weight which is actually stated on the plate. Competition plates have less tolerance and therefore a more intricate production process with more human intervention. This is the right set of plates for serious Olympic weightlifters who want to train at home under competition conditions. 

Steel plates 

Steel plates come in different variations. Their main distinction is the tolerance from the weight stated on the plate. Also, make sure that the steel plates you buy fit on the sleeve on the barbell which you already have. Steel plates are relatively cheap and easy to store. You can get more weight on your barbell and save space on storage units with steel plates. The drawback is that you can not deadlift with them on concrete or wood. You will need some kind of platform to deadlift with steel plates. They are also more likely to oxidate when used outside. Dropping them from overhead will wreck the plates as well as the barbell you are using. These are the right plates for anyone who mainly is interested in powerlifting. 

Change plates

Change plates are small plates that make it possible to increase the weight on the bar in smaller increments than 2.5kg. If you want to use the Wendler 531 method and practice micro loading in your training you should not pass some change plates. 


Get the plates together with your barbell. I am personally a huge fan of getting one pair of bumpers and the rest in steel for a home gym. This covers most applications and can also make the weight easier to drop when deadlifting. 

Topics: Rogue, Powerlifting, Crossfit, Barbell, Plates, Bench, Dumbbell, Rack