The 6 Best Crossfit Barbell for 2021 [Review and Buying Guide]


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CrossFit has become super popular in the last decade. Today there are over 13,000 affiliated gyms in over 120 countries. It has become this popular due to the functional workout movements that train both strength and conditioning and high intensity intervals.

These are functional movements that you use in your day-to-day life such as pushing, squatting, and pulling and a lot involve the use of barbells. That’s why finding and using the best CrossFit Barbell for you is crucial as you will be performing a variety of exercises in your workout of the day (WOD).

So as a collegiate athlete who has trained in several small to world-class CrossFit gyms, I want to share my thoughts on different Crossfit Barbells I have used along the way of my CrossFit journey.

Best Barbell for Crossfit

#1- Best CrossFit Barbell: The Rogue Crossfit Bar 2.0

Specifications

  • Manufactured in Columbus, OH
  • Diameter: 28.5MM
  • Weight: 20KG
  • Dual Knurl Marks for Olympic and Power lifts
  • No Center Knurl
  • 190,000 PSI Tensile Strength 
  • Steel Bronze Bushings

Rogue is one of the largest American distributors and manufacturers of strength and conditioning equipment. From CrossFit and military to collegiate and professional sports teams, Rogue has become a household name to all North Americans that want trustworthy and reliable sports equipment.

Their Rogue Crossfit Bar has a classic barbell design with a black zinc finish. This improves the overall durability and reduces the amount of chipping and rusting that most cheaper brands face.

The 29MM diameter steel shaft has a tensile strength of 205,000 PSI, meaning it can withstand loads of over 1500 lbs. With zero whip or flex and superior rigidity, this is the best bar to use if you’re looking to do CrossFit, especially when you’re cleaning and jerking.

The aggressive knurling is present in all the Rogue Crossfit Barbell. Its deep, coarse pattern provides the reliable grip that you need when you are lifting heavy weights, without being abrasive or sharp. 

If you’re looking to have a durable and sturdy barbell for your CrossFit workouts that provides everything you need, the Rogue Crossfit Bar is definitely made for you.

Pros

  • Lifetime warranty against any bending
  • Same day shipping
  • Aggressive knurling that ensures your grip doesn’t slip when you lift heavy weights
  • 16.25” loadable sleeve length meaning you have more room to put more bumper plates 
  • 6 different finishes – Black Zinc Shaft, Bright Zinc Sleeves. Black Zinc Shaft, Black Zinc Sleeves. Black Oxide Shaft, Black Oxide Sleeves.

Cons

  • The sleeves are made with grooves which creates a zipping noise when you are loading and unloading the plates. This could be an issue.

#2- Best Powerlifting Barbell: The Texas Power Bar

Specifications

  • Length: 84” (213 cm)
  • Weight: 20 kg (45 lbs)
  • Diameter: 28.55 mm
  • Weight Load Capacity: 1500 lbs
  • Tensile Strength: 186,000 psi
  • Shaft Material: Sprung Tempered Steel with a Zinc Plated Finish

The Texas Power Bar was first created and manufactured by Buddy Capps over 40 years ago. Back in the 1960s, the Olympic Bars had hardly on the grip as the knurling was so light and slick. The sleeves held on the bar had a threaded end cap and an inside collar held in place together with a set screw.

The goal was to create a barbell that would have better knurling for improved grip and sleeves that wouldn’t slide into the center. This would reduce the maintenance meaning the bar would be more durable.

That’s how the Texas Power Bar was created.

Each shaft is knurled to create the best grip in the industry. The black zinc and chrome plating finishes prevent the bar from rusting. With over 180 K Tensile Strength, the barbell will hold up heavy weights with ease, so you never have to worry about a bar falling apart mid lift.

This bar has continued to set and break state, national, international, and world powerlifting records, so you know these power bars are among the best in the market. 

Measuring at a shorter 28.5mm diameter in comparison to other standard power bars, the thin feel gives a sense that you have more control over the bar that is perfect for deadlifts.

With the Chrome and Black Zinc Coating finish that protects the bar from rust and a 10 Year Warranty, you’ll never need another barbell ever again.

Pros

  • The 186 K PSI Tensile Strength reduces the bar whip that occurs when you’re lifting heavier weights.
  • Approved by All Powerlifting Federations and Competitions
  • The bar that has broken many powerlifting records
  • The bushings in the collars allows for a smoother spin
  • Versatile for all types of Barbell Exercises
  • Dependable and Durable – Will Last For Decades.

Cons

  • Newer power barbells now have a higher tensile strength.
  • Shorter bar diameter and sleeve length than standard power barbells

#3- Best Women’s Barbell: Bella Bar 2.0

Specifications

  • Made in Columbus, OH, USA
  • Weight: 15KG (33LB)
  • Diameter: 25MM (0.98″)
  • Bar Length: 79.13″, Loadable Sleeve Length: 13.00″
  • Tensile Strength: 190,000 PSI
  • NEW Polymer-Ceramic Composite Finish option in Custom Colors w/ Rogue branding
  • Note: Clear bars are coated post machining so they will have slight blemishes from clamps in our machining process.
  • Sleeve Finish: Black Cerakote or Chrome
  • Dual Knurl Marks: Both Powerlift and Olympic Knurling
  • No Center Knurl
  • Construction Warranty

The Bella Bar is the go-to multipurpose barbell for all female CrossFit enthusiasts and athletes. It provides the versatility, longevity, and performance at a price that is very affordable. The Bella Crossfit Bar has a 190,000 PSI shaft at a 25 mm diameter allowing some flex to the bar.

The knurling pattern is standard to Rogue as it has a moderate depth with no sharpness towards it. As this bar is catered to women, the knurling is very mild. With chalk, high rep sets won’t be a gripping problem at the weights usually used in WODs. 

With the addition of the Cerakote finish, it provides the grip you need for all those sweaty workouts. The sleeve assembly is the same as the Rogue CrossFit Bar where it has sleeves rotating on a pair of bushings. These sleeves are attached to the shaft through a horseshoe collar and other snap rings.

If you’re looking for an affordable women’s 15kg CrossFit bar without spending over $300, then I recommend you check out the Bella Bar 2.0.

Pros

  • Variety of finishes and colors
  • 190,000 PSI Shaft for durability
  • Used for many CrossFit Games and Big Events
  • Optimized for Olympic Weightlifting, CrossFit WODs, and Powerlifting

Cons

  • Knurling pattern is mild

#4- Best Olympic Barbell: Rogue Stainless Steel Olympic Weightlifting Barbell

Specifications

  • Bar Weight: 45LB
  • Diameter: 29MM
  • Center Knurl: Yes
  • Knurl Marks: Powerlifting
  • Shaft Coating: Stainless Steel
  • Bar Length: 86.52″
  • Distance Between Sleeves: 51.5″
  • Loadable Sleeve Length: 16.25″
  • Bushing/Bearing: Bushing
  • Tensile Strength: 200,000 PSI

Rogue’s 45lb Stainless Steel Ohio Power Bar is similar to the standard Ohio Power Bar but the difference is the stainless steel finish. The stainless steel provides a superior oxidation resistance in comparison to all other barbells. This means it’s perfect for gym owners and fitness enthusiasts that are looking to own one barbell for a long time.

Stainless steel is low maintenance which eliminates any worries about chipping or wearing down the finishes on the bar’s sleeves. All it takes is a simple synthetic bristle brush to clean the stainless steel barbell and it will last you decades.

Although it has a reduced tensile strength of 200,000 PSI, it still gives the rigidity and minimal whip that you’d expect for a CrossFit Barbell

If you’re looking to have a solid Ohio CrossFit Power Bar that will last you for a long time, we recommend choosing the stainless steel options.

Pros

  • Less maintenance and care needed to preserve the appearance of the barbell 
  • Lifetime warranty against any bending
  • Same day shipping
  • Aggressive knurling that ensures your grip doesn’t slip when you lift heavy weights
  • 16.25” loadable sleeve length meaning you have more room to put more bumper plates

Cons

  • A bit more expensive than other bars

#5- Best Value Barbell: FringeSport Wonder Bar V2 

Specifications

  • Weight: 20kg (44 lbs)
  • Weight capacity: 1,600 lb
  • Tensile strength: 205,000 PSI
  • Yield strength:160,000 PSI
  • Material: Alloy Steel, Black ZincPlated
  • Length: 86 inches
  • Sleeve Specs:16 inches Length and 2″ diameter
  • Shaft Specs: true28mm diameter

FringeSports has become the official supplier to garage gym owners. Serving CrossFit owners, the WODders, and any type of individuals that has a burning desire to be better tomorrow than they were today. They are customer-focused and make sure they completely satisfy all your WOD-aholic needs.

The Wonder Bar is the most versatile barbell on FringeSport’s catalog. It is equipped with a 28mm shaft diameter which is perfect for cleans, jerks, and snatches movements. The needle bearing cartridge provides great spin allowing your weights to slide onto the CrossFit barbell seamlessly.

The Wonder CrossFit Barbell has dual-marked knurling which is mild compared to other high-end Olympic and CrossFit Barbell. This is beneficial as it allows you to perform different lifts that can be adjusted depending on the WODs without your skin being peeled off.

The biggest benefit is the affordability, if you’re looking for a barbell that is cheaper without losing too many of the features that you love for a CrossFit bar, then I recommend having a look at the FringeSPort Wonder Bar.

Pros

  • 216,200 PSI strength
  • Moderate Knurling providing the balance you need for all types of CrossFit WODS
  • All Black Zinc Finish
  • Affordable
  • Bushing Rotation
  • Quieter when dropped

Cons

  • Not as durable with the finish as the rest of the competitors

CrossFit Barbell Guide

CrossFit Bar Tensile Strength and Capacity

Tensile Strength is measured in PSI, which shows the amount of force that it will take for your bar to break. When you’re looking for a power bar, keep an eye out for the PSI rating. 

However, a higher PSI rating is not an indicator that it is a better barbell. You must also look at yield strength, the point at which your bar will bend and not return back to its original state. However, most manufacturers and suppliers do not disclose these ratings.

As a regular lifter, you will not have to worry about Tensile Strength as they are very strong and will unlikely break on you.

CrossFit Bar Knurling

CrossFit Bars usually have very aggressive knurling. This makes it a lot easier for your hands to get a hold of and prevent them from sliding down when you’re lifting heavy weights. However, it can tear up calluses and your skin if it isn’t tough. 

This is great for regular lifters as rough and aggressive knurling feels like the bars are glued onto your hands. If you’re locking the bar on your back or your hands tightly, it should not tear your skin as much if you’re not lifting near your max.

CrossFit Bar Stiffness

The stiffness of a CrossFit Bars is not the tensile strength. It also does not mean it has a higher tensile strength if it is a stiffer barbell.

Bar length, Material Density, and Thickness all play a part in the stiffness of the barbell. It reduces the whip, making pull lifts such as deadlifts harder to pull up.

CrossFit Bar Finish and Feel

Bars are coated with a finish to prevent rusting. This keeps the quality of the bar healthy for several years. Common coatings that are used include zinc plating and chrome finishes.

These finishes will change the grip and how it feels on your hands. It will also determine how much maintenance you will need to keep the bar rust free.

Bare Steel – When you’re using bare steel, the knurling feels like glue as there is no coating interference. However, they are more prone to rust. If you train or live in a humid environment, you’ll need to oil it regularly to limit the oxidation from the bar.

Black Zinc / Bright Zinc – The black zinc shaft and right zinc sleeves offer better corrosion resistance. You won’t get the natural feel of bare steel because of the zinc coating, but you’ll still get a similar grip feeling.

You won’t need to do as much maintenance as the bare steel, however, we recommend brushing your bars with oil monthly.

Cerakote – Cerakote is one of the newer finishes available. It’s gained in popularity because of its aesthetic qualities and resistance to oxidation. Cerakote can be customized with patterns, colors, and logos making it ideal for schools, sports teams, businesses, and gyms.

Stainless Steel / Chrome – Stainless Steel provides a maximum amount of rust resistance however you do feel less of the knurl. It feels more slipperier however you won’t have to worry about oiling and maintaining it as often.

CrossFit Bar Sleeves

Older bars and older plates often make it harder to push inside the sleeves as it gets stuck mid way. This can be an issue if you’re loading and unloading plates every set.

Good CrossFit Bar’s sleeve uses a bronze bushing system that allows a consistent spin. This makes it easier to put and slide plates on the power bar.

Conclusion

When choosing a Deadlift Bar, there are many factors to consider. The knurling, the length, the tensile strength, the sleeves, and more.

However, taking all of this into consideration, out of all the Deadlift Bars, we recommend the Rogue Crossfit Bar

The Rogue Crossfit Bar has a classic barbell design with a black zinc finish. This improves the overall durability and reduces the amount of chipping and rusting that most cheaper brands face.

The 29MM diameter steel shaft has a tensile strength of 205,000 PSI, meaning it can withstand loads of over 1500 lbs. With zero whip or flex and superior rigidity, this is the best bar to use if you’re looking to do CrossFit, especially when you’re cleaning and jerking.

The aggressive knurling is present in all the Rogue Crossfit Barbell. Its deep, coarse pattern provides the reliable grip that you need when you are lifting heavy weights, without being abrasive or sharp. 

If you’re looking to have a durable and sturdy barbell for your CrossFit workouts that provides everything you need, the Rogue Crossfit Bar is definitely made for you.

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About Julien

Hey! Thanks for being here. I’ve been active pretty much my whole life and I discovered Crossfit about 5 years ago. I want to help you improve your Crossfit performances by giving tips on specific movements, workouts and equipment. You have a question? Get in touch!

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