T Nation

Olympic Bar Questions

Are the o rings on olympic bars usually measured out to a standard length or do they generally vary based on the manufacturer?

Do powerlifters use olympic bars in competition? or do they use a different type of bar?

I think powerlifters use something a little stronger in competition. I think its called a Texas bar. I’m not sure though as I think Texas bars are thicker than Oly bars.

I’ve seen lots of Olympic bars start bending at about 400 or 500 lbs. Could you imagine that sonuvabitch with 1000lbs on the bar??

[quote]chrismcl wrote:
I think powerlifters use something a little stronger in competition. I think its called a Texas bar. I’m not sure though as I think Texas bars are thicker than Oly bars.

I’ve seen lots of Olympic bars start bending at about 400 or 500 lbs. Could you imagine that sonuvabitch with 1000lbs on the bar?? [/quote]

Unfortunately I haven’t handled 400 on my olympic bar yet, but I am getting close!

I bet 1000lbs on an olympic bar would be insane, the bar bend would probably make the lift impossible.

[quote]basementD wrote:
Are the o rings on olympic bars usually measured out to a standard length or do they generally vary based on the manufacturer?

Do powerlifters use olympic bars in competition? or do they use a different type of bar?

[/quote]

Keep in mind that a so-called “olympic bar” is not the same as a bar for olympic lifting. The former, from what I understand, are merely the right diameter for “olympic plates.” The latter are specially crafted for o-lifting, and they are priced accordingly. There are only a handful of companies that even make bars for olympic lifting.

Among them are:

Eleiko
Uesaka
York Barbell (at least they used to)
Mavrik

Eleiko and Uesaka are by and large regarded as the industry leaders worldwide. Expect to pay a minimum of several hundred dollars for a decent olympic lifting bar. There is a world of difference between one and a power bar, let alone a run-of-the-mill “olympic bar.” Most weight trainers, however, have little or no need for an olympic lifting bar.

You forget the folks at Ivanko who made some kind of good bars, especially for PL. Their pricing are lower than Eleiko but the quality is outstanding…www.ivanko.com

Olympic bars for olympic weightlifting are designed to flex. Goods ones are the those that always recover after stress. The whippy nature of these bars are utilised by oly lifters to actually help them make the lifts. These bars always have great bearings too which is very important for reduced friction rotation to save the wrists and make it easier for the lifter to pull themselves under the bar.

Powerlifters want completely the opposite. They want a bar as stiff as possible, that doesn’t flex at all even under even massive loads. This helps them lift more. The bar diameter varies between bars of different purpose. DL bars are on the thinner side to add grip whilst squat bars tend to be thicker.

Unless you are doing olympic lifts you don’t want a true olympic bar.