We all know that resistance training can be the key to a great workout regimen, and one of the best ways to reach your strength training goals is by using weight plates. No matter what level of strength training you do, barbells and weights are going to be your most valuable tools for an effective workout.
Barbells are only as effective as the weight plates that are attached to them, so the type and weight of your plates can determine how far you progress in your training. In this guide, we’ll talk about how weight plates can impact and benefit your workout, as well as how to choose the best weight plates for your Fitness Equipment.
In case you’re a newbie to the gym, weight plates are the heavy, plate-shaped discs that are attached to the ends of barbells. In strength training, weight plates enable you to achieve your desired lifting weight in a wide range of resistance training and muscle isolation exercises.
And, as you’ll find out below, you can also use weight plates without bars to do a variety of total-body and muscle-isolating exercises during your workout routines.
Typically, standard weight plates weigh from 2.75 pounds to 55 pounds, although you might also occasionally find plates weighing in at 100 pounds.
In most gyms, you’ll find barbells loaded with weight plates at a standard 45 pounds each. Figuring in the weight of the barbell, which is usually around 45 pounds, means that, with one 45-pound plate on each side, you’re lifting a total of 135 pounds. Here’s a calculation of your total lifts with 45-pound weight plates and a 45-pound barbell:
If someone says they lifted a “one-plate bench,” this means that they lifted a bar with one 45-pound plate on each side, for a total lift of 135 pounds. Likewise, a “two-plate” lift would mean two 45-pound plates on each side, for a total lift of 225 pounds, and so on.
In case you’re wondering why standard plates aren’t just configured at 50 pounds instead of 45, it’s because they’re made according to the metric system, using kilograms rather than pounds.
What’s not to like about weight plates? Whether they’re standard plates or bumper plates, fitness experts agree: Weight plates are an essential piece of home gym equipment. They enable you to perform a wide range of exercises at a variety of weights to suit your fitness goals and provide maximum benefits for weight-resistance training and muscle isolation.
Here’s how weight plates can benefit your workout:
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