The Best Powerlifting Barbell For Your Garage Gym In 2024

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Powerlifting is about lifting the most weight possible in the Squat, Bench Press, and Deadlift.

If you want to get as strong as possible, a solid power bar is what I recommend you get.

The knurling is going to be more aggressive for a better grip and they’re able to handle heavy loads without whipping around and flexing as much.

So in today’s guide, I will cover the best powerlifting barbells for your home gym!

Let’s get started!

RELATED – Best Barbells For Your Home Gym

What Are The Best Powerlifting Barbells?

Best Powerlifting Barbell Overall – Rogue Ohio Power Bar

Best Powerlifting Barbell Overall
Rogue Ohio Power Bar
The Rogue Ohio Power Bar, with its 29mm diameter, single powerlifting knurl marks, center knurling, and its perfect blend of depth and coarseness that provides superior grip without being sharp or abrasive, stands as the ultimate powerlifting barbell for benching, squatting, and deadlifting.
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The Rogue Ohio Power Bar is a versatile piece of equipment that offers a plethora of customization options.

Available in a 45 lb version, you can choose from a variety of shaft finishes including Black Zinc, Black E-Coat, Bare Steel, and Stainless Steel.

OPB different finishes

The sleeves also come in different finishes such as Bright Zinc, Bare Steel, Stainless Steel, Chrome, and Proprietary Matte Black Sleeves.

There’s also a cerakote version available in blue, black, red, and OD green.

For those who want to add a personal touch, Rogue offers a fully customizable version of this bar using their ZEUS Build-a-Bar system.

rogue zeus build a bar options

You can change the color of the shaft and sleeves, add custom logos or words, and even choose different color bushings.

One of the standout features of this bar is its volcano-style knurling.

It’s aggressive yet comfortable, with little divots at the top of each volcano point to increase the surface area of the knurling, ensuring a better grip.

rogue ohio power bar different knurls

The 20 kg version, while offering fewer customization options, is IPF certified, making it an excellent choice for those looking to mimic competition conditions.

It also features thinner sleeves, allowing weight plates to sit closer and increasing the bar’s stiffness.

However, the bar does have a few drawbacks. The stainless steel versions, while offering superior performance and requiring less maintenance, are quite pricey.

stainless steel rogue ohio power bar prices

The grooved sleeves, while providing extra grip for your collars, can make it difficult to get plates on and off due to increased friction.

Lastly, the cerakote finish, while aesthetically pleasing, tends to dull the knurling.

In conclusion, the Rogue Ohio Power Bar offers a wide range of options and features that cater to different needs and preferences, making it a solid choice for both training and competition.

Best Powerlifting Barbell For Advanced Lifters – REP Double Black Diamond Power Bar

Best Powerlifting Barbell For Advanced Lifters
Rep Double Black Diamond Power Bar

Unlock your lifting potential with the Rep Double Black Diamond Bar. This 20kg bar offers unbeatable grip and easy plate loading, all while meeting top strength standards. Choose from six styles, including all stainless steel, and lift up to 1,500lbs with confidence. Make your gym stand out with this premium barbell.

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As someone deeply entrenched in the world of strength training and building home gyms, I’ve come across my fair share of barbells.

But let me tell you, the REP Double Black Diamond Power Bar really stands out, especially for advanced lifters.

This barbell isn’t just a piece of equipment; it’s a commitment to serious powerlifting.

rep black diamond aggressive knurling

First off, the aggressive knurling on this bar is something to rave about. It’s like finding that sweet spot where you get a firm grip without feeling like you’re holding onto a cactus.

This is crucial for those heavy lifts where every bit of grip counts. And with the IPF markings, you’re looking at a bar that aligns perfectly with competition standards.

It’s like training in the gym with the same feel you’d get on the competition floor.

man about to deadlift with rep power bar

Now, let’s talk about durability. This bar boasts a 200,000 PSI tensile strength. In layman’s terms, it’s tough as nails.

Whether you’re loading it up for some heavy deadlifts or pushing your limits on the bench press, this bar is up for the challenge.

And for those who have a keen eye for aesthetics and quality, the stainless steel option is a real treat.

rep black diamond bar laser engravings

It’s not just about looks; this finish offers excellent resistance to rust and corrosion, which is a big deal if you’re setting up in a garage or basement gym.

But what really makes this bar a top pick for advanced lifters is its stiffness. Thanks to its 29mm shaft, you’re not going to experience unwanted flex during your lifts.

This means more stability and better performance. Plus, with six different finishes to choose from, you’ve got options to match your style and budget.

different finishes of the rep diamond bar e1701998037128

Of course, no product is without its drawbacks. The aggressive knurling might be a bit much for some, and the price point, while reasonable for its quality, might not fit everyone’s budget.

Also, keep in mind that the stainless steel option can be a bit elusive in terms of stock availability.

The REP Double Black Diamond Power Bar is a powerhouse of a barbell. It’s built for lifters who mean business and are looking to push their limits.

With its combination of quality construction, performance-focused features, and durability, it’s a bar that I’d confidently recommend to any serious lifter looking to upgrade their home gym setup.

Most Popular Powerlifting Barbell – Texas Power Bar

Most Popular Powerlifting Barbell
The "Original" Texas Power Bar
The Original Texas Power Bar is Texas' premier powerlifting bar. It is the culmination of years of experience in the design and manufacturing of power bars. This bar is made from the highest quality materials with a focus on durability and performance.
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The Texas Power Bar, a staple in the weightlifting world since 1980, has been the go-to for many of the world’s strongest lifters.

Its reputation for handling colossal weights is well-earned and not easily dismissed.

texas power bar records

RELATED – History of the Barbell – Evolution and Impact on Physical Fitness

The bar’s deep and aggressive knurling ensures a secure grip, making it an ideal choice for those with resilient hands seeking the best grip possible.

It also allows for worry-free squats as it won’t slip off your back.

aggressive knurling of the texas power bar

Despite its impressive specifications, the Texas Power Bar offers excellent value for the money.

With a price range of $290-$350, it’s a solid investment for a high-quality powerlifting barbell.

The bar is available in a variety of finishes for both the shaft and sleeves, including bare steel, black zinc, and chrome.

The bare steel and black zinc shafts can be paired with chrome and bare steel sleeves, while the chrome shaft can only be paired with chrome sleeves.

chrome and bare steel shafts of the texas power bar

Additionally, it offers cerakote coating shaft options with chrome sleeves.

The color palette is diverse, ranging from red and bazooka green to purple, white, black, blue, tungsten, and orange, allowing for a high degree of customization.

screenshot 2022.12.10 23 06 59

However, the Texas Power Bar is not without its drawbacks. Its 28.5mm shaft, which is the standard width for a multipurpose bar, is a point of contention for some.

While this width offers a balance of flexibility and rigidity, it may not be ideal for squats and bench presses where a stiffer bar is often preferred.

texas power bar wide sleeves

The bar’s wider sleeve collars, which place the weight further from the center, can also result in more whip, a feature that may not be beneficial for all lifters.

The bar’s aggressive knurling, while a boon for some, can be a disadvantage for others depending on the toughness and callousness of their hands.

Some lifters may just prefer a less sharp, yet still aggressive knurling which is understandable.

Lastly, the lack of a stainless steel option is a notable omission.

Stainless steel is a superior material for barbells due to its low maintenance requirements and high resistance to wear and tear.

It also provides a more natural feel and aesthetic appeal than other finishes. I definitely believe that a stainless steel version of the Texas Power Bar would certainly find a ready market.

Best Heavy-Duty Power Bar – Kabuki Strength Power Bar

Best Heavy-Duty Powerlifting Barbell
Kabuki Strength Power Bar

This bar is our IPF spec, multi purpose, power bar. It is a 29mm bar, with aggressive but not overly sharp Kabuknurl (our proprietary knurl pattern/type), and standard powerlifting markings.

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The Kabuki Strength Power Bar is an impressively engineered barbell with top-of-the-line specs and performance.

It features Kabuki’s proprietary Kabuknurl knurling pattern for optimal grip without being too aggressive.

close up of knurling

The bar is made from extremely hard steel with a 51 HRC rating and has a massive 250,000+ PSI tensile strength, making it the strongest bar on the market.

In simple terms, there is literally no weight you can throw on this thing that will bend or warp it in any way.

Kabuki Strength New Generation Bar Testing: Knurl

Aesthetically, it comes in several finish options including zinc, black oxide, and cerakote.

kabuki power bar different finishes

Standout features include the Kabuki logo stamped into the endcaps and dual knurl marks in the center knurl.

kabuki strength power bar end cap

While certainly on the expensive side at $600-700+, for hardcore powerlifters or those wanting simply the best, the Kabuki Strength Power Bar delivers with its specialized knurling, unmatched durability, high tensile strength, and overall premium construction.

screenshot 2022.12.11 11 54 39

Minor drawbacks exist such as the sleeves moving more than expected and the finishes not always being perfect.

However, for those serious about their home gym gear, the Kabuki Power Bar is arguably the top choice for a high-performance powerlifting barbell.

Best High-End Power Bar – American Barbell Elite Power Bar

Best High-End Power Bar
American Barbell Elite Power Bar

The American Barbell Elite Power Bar has a shaft made from precision grade stainless steel. The strength of the shaft is tested with every shipment of raw material to ensure we have a consistent 190,000 PSI tensile strength. This attention to detail ensures reliable long-term performance day in and day out.

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The American Barbell Elite Power Bar is a standout in the fitness industry, boasting some impressive features and consistent high-quality construction.

One of the first things you’ll notice about this barbell is its stainless steel shaft. This feature is more than just appealing to the eye.

The stainless steel construction makes it low maintenance and long-lasting, withstanding the tests of time and extensive use.

solid knurling of elite power bar

It also adds an unexpected bonus to the knurling aspect of the bar.

The bar’s knurling might be classified as mild to medium, but the high-density knurl points combined with the naturally non-slick texture of stainless steel means it offers a firm grip that won’t rough up your hands.

Another point worth noting is its origin – it’s proudly made in the USA. This factor is often attributed as a key reason for the bar’s high quality.

barbell beautiful welds on sleeves

The overall rigidity, backed by a tensile strength of 190,000 PSI, and its resistance to corrosion further exemplify its quality construction.

There are tons of reviews that sing praises of the bar’s excellent build and comfortable grip, especially lauding its knurling.

On the flip side, the barbell doesn’t come without its downsides.

elite power bar high price tag and reviews

Its high price tag is one. While it’s a significant investment, most users insist on its worth.

Its medium knurl might leave those looking for a more aggressive grip wanting. And while it holds its own against its competitors, other, newer stainless steel bars on the market are less expensive.

Lastly, there have been user notes on the chrome coating on the sleeves, suggesting it may not be as durable as one might hope.

However, all in all, the American Barbell Elite Power Bar, with its array of positives, remains a strong contender in the fitness industry.

Best Budget Powerlifting Barbell – Bells Of Steel Barenaked Powerlifting Bar 2.0

Best Budget Powerlifting Barbell
Barenaked Powerlifting Bar 2.0
The Bells of Steel Barenaked Powerlifting Bar is an outstanding budget-friendly choice due to its optimal specs, such as the thin competition sleeve collars enabling a larger loadable sleeve length, aggressive volcano-style knurling for maximum grip, less aggressive center knurl for comfort, impressive 210,000 PSI tensile strength, and raw carbon steel build providing a natural, grippy feel.
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Offering tremendous value, the Bells of Steel Barenaked Bar 2.0 powerlifting barbell costs only $220 yet boasts impressive specs like a 210,000 PSI tensile strength rating and 1,500 lb weight capacity.

Barenaked bar with description, reviews, and pricing

It features an aggressive volcano knurl for ample grip along with thinner competition-style sleeves for maximum loadable sleeve length.

closeup of thin competition collar

The bar also utilizes thinner competition-style sleeves to allow for more loadable sleeve length when using bumper plates.

Constructed from raw carbon steel, the Barenaked Bar provides a natural, grippy feel in the hands versus coated bars that can feel slick.

super closeup of volcano style knurl

While the budget price is a major plus, the bare steel requires frequent maintenance to prevent rusting which is a hassle.

The knurling sharpness also varies throughout the bar rather than being uniformly consistent.

less aggressive center knurl

Lastly, the center knurl is less aggressive than some lifters may want for keeping the bar planted on back squats.

But for those wanting a sturdy, aggressively-knurled powerlift bar on a tight budget, the Bells of Steel Barenaked Bar 2.0 delivers excellent value and performance.

Best Powerlifting Squat Bar – Rogue 32mm Squat Bar

Best Powerlifting Squat Bar
Rogue 32MM Squat Bar

The 32MM Squat Bar is another Rogue-exclusive, Ohio-built power bar, featuring a deep, coarse knurl pattern for optimal “stick” and an oversized stainless steel shaft for reduced whip/flex on heavy loads.

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The Rogue 32mm Squat Bar is a specialty barbell engineered specifically for supporting massive squats with its extra thick 32mm shaft diameter providing unmatched rigidity and stability.

The bar features a fully knurled stainless steel shaft that enables excellent grip during back squats while also delivering superior corrosion resistance and durability compared to coated steel.

rogue squat bar beautiful knurling

Its aggressive volcano-style knurling is similar to Rogue’s popular Ohio Power Bar for ample grip across the shoulders without being overly sharp.

To ensure optimal performance, Rogue enlisted feedback from elite powerlifter Ray Williams and the team at Westside Barbell, renowned for producing world-class squatters.

ray williams about to test out the rogue squat barbell

As a result, the bar delivers exactly what competitive lifters need for squatting bigger weights worry-free.

The hard chrome sleeves add durability at a more affordable cost versus stainless steel.

hard chrome sleeves and wide collars

With a total length of 94.5″ and a long 16.8″ loadable sleeve length, the bar easily accommodates lifters with very wide stances.

At around $450, the Rogue 32mm Squat Bar hits a sweet spot of delivering specialty bar quality and performance for squats without an overly premium price tag.

pricing of 32mm squat bar

The main drawback is that it is quite niche-specific, as most lifters will squat perfectly fine with a standard power bar.

It is also not IPF competition approved due to the thicker diameter.

However, for lifters focused on maximizing their raw squat strength, the Rogue 32mm Squat Bar is an industry-leading choice with optimal knurling, impressive rigidity, and robust construction purpose-built for conquering massive squats.

Best Powerlifting Deadlift Bar – Texas Deadlift Bar

Best Powerlifting Deadlift Bar
Texas Deadlift Bar
The Texas Deadlift Bar is perfect for your home gym. This bar has a tensile strength of 190,000 pounds and is made from high-quality materials. It also has three different shafts to choose from - bare steel, black zinc, or chrome - as well as two different sleeves - chrome or bare steel. The 27 diameter shaft makes it easy to grip and the aggressive knurl provides a solid grip.
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The Texas Deadlift Bar is a renowned choice among powerlifters, celebrated for its unique features tailored specifically for deadlifts.

It boasts a wide array of finish options, ensuring lifters can select a design that resonates with their preferences.

finish options for texas deadlift bar

Particularly, the bar offers finishes such as bare steel, black zinc, chrome, and an impressive eight cerakote choices for the shaft.

Despite the limited sleeve finishes of bare carbon steel and chrome, this bar’s appeal lies in its performance characteristics.

aggressive knurling of this deadlift bar

It is notably longer than its counterpart, the Texas Power bar, measuring 92.5″ with 18″ sleeves.

If you’re interested in getting some shorter barbells for your home gym, check out my guide here.

This extended length not only accommodates more plates but also provides a distinctive whip that outclasses even formidable competitors like the Rogue Deadlift Bar.

The aggressive knurling, echoing the grip of the Rogue Ohio Deadlift Bar, ensures that lifters maintain a firm hold, especially when complemented with chalk.

incredible history of the texas deadlift bar

Its reputation is further solidified by its longstanding use by some of the world’s strongest deadlifters.

RELATED – The Ultimate Deadlift Bar Comparison – Choosing the Right Bar for Your Lifts

However, the Texas Deadlift Bar is not without its shortcomings.

Potential buyers should be wary of the chrome sleeves, which, although designed to shield the steel, have been reported to show signs of rust upon arrival.

screenshot of negative review describing rust buildup

Additionally, while the cerakote coating offers aesthetic flair, its durability has been questioned, with some users noting it tends to scuff off prematurely.

As a suggestion to the manufacturers, the introduction of a stainless steel version could address some of these durability concerns and further enhance the bar’s market appeal.

Overall though, the Texas Deadlift bar is by far one of the best and proven barbells on the market.

What Is a Powerlifting Barbell?

A powerlifting barbell is a specialized bar designed for the key lifts in powerlifting: the squat, bench press, and deadlift.

It’s characterized by aggressive knurling for a secure grip, a stiff construction to minimize flex under heavy weights, and standardized dimensions for consistency in training and competition.

Additionally, it often features a center knurl to help the bar stay in place during squats.

What to Look for In a Power Bar

When you’re in the market for a power bar, there are several key factors to consider to ensure you get the best fit for your lifting needs. 

Let’s focus on the specific specs and features that are ideal for powerlifting bars, without naming specific brands or models:

  1. Overall Construction – Look for a bar with a reputation for solid build quality. It should be able to withstand heavy use and maintain its shape over time.
  2. Tensile Strength – Aim for a tensile strength of around 190,000 to 210,000 PSI. This range ensures the bar can handle heavy loads without bending.
  3. Steel Quality – High-grade alloy steel is recommended for its strength and durability. It should be able to resist wear and tear from regular heavy lifting.
  4. Knurling – Aggressive or deep mountain knurling is best for powerlifting. It provides a secure grip for heavy lifts. However, it shouldn’t be so sharp that it becomes uncomfortable or damaging to the hands.
  5. Rotation System – Bronze bushings are a good choice for power bars. They offer a balance between smooth rotation and the stability needed for powerlifting movements.
  6. Finish – Stainless steel or cerakote finishes are ideal. Stainless steel offers excellent corrosion resistance and a natural feel, while cerakote provides a protective layer and comes in various colors.
  7. Cost – While higher-quality bars tend to be more expensive, it’s important to find a bar that offers the best value for money. Don’t compromise on key features for the sake of cost.
  8. Loadable Sleeve Length – Ensure the bar has enough sleeve length to accommodate the number of weight plates you plan to use. This is especially important if you use thicker plates or bumper plates.
  9. Diameter – A diameter of 29mm is standard for powerlifting bars. This thickness provides a good balance between a firm grip and comfort during heavy lifts.
  10. Warranty – A good warranty indicates the manufacturer’s confidence in their product. Look for a warranty that covers defects in materials and workmanship for several years.

By focusing on these specific specs and features, you can find a powerlifting bar that meets your needs and supports your training goals effectively.

F Scale Rating For Power Bars

The “F Scale Rating” for powerlifting barbells is a system developed by Rogue Fitness to rate the durability and quality of barbells, particularly in terms of their tensile strength and load capacity.

Here’s a breakdown of what this rating entails and how it can guide you in choosing a powerlifting barbell:

  • F-Scale Rating System – This system categorizes barbells based on their tensile strength, yield strength, and load capacity. The higher the F-Scale rating, the more durable and resilient the barbell is under heavy loads.
  • Tensile Strength – One of the key factors in the F-Scale rating is tensile strength, measured in pounds per square inch (PSI). This indicates the maximum amount of stress a barbell can withstand before breaking. For powerlifting, a higher tensile strength (e.g., over 190,000 PSI) is desirable.
  • Yield Strength – This refers to the amount of stress at which a barbell will deform permanently. A higher yield strength means the bar can handle heavy lifts without bending.
  • Load Capacity – The F-Scale also considers the barbell’s load capacity, which is crucial for powerlifting. Bars rated higher on the F-Scale can support more weight, making them suitable for heavy powerlifting routines.
  • Application of F-Scale in Powerlifting – When selecting a barbell for powerlifting, consider those with a higher F-Scale rating. These bars are designed to endure the rigors of heavy lifting and are less likely to bend or break under extreme weights.
  • Durability and Longevity – Bars with a higher F-Scale rating are typically more durable and offer greater longevity, making them a wise investment for serious powerlifters who train regularly with heavy weights.

The F-Scale rating is a valuable tool for assessing the quality and suitability of a barbell for powerlifting. 

However, it’s not as widely used beyond Rogue barbells. However, if you follow the guidelines they outline on their site, it will help you determine the potential F-scale based on their recommendations.

What Are the Benefits of Using Powerlifting Barbells?

Powerlifting barbells offer several benefits that make them an essential tool for strength training, particularly for those focusing on powerlifting.

Here’s an expanded look at their advantages, including the points you’ve mentioned:

  • Multi-Exercise Compatibility – These barbells are perfect for the big three – squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. But their usefulness doesn’t stop there; they’re great for a whole range of strength training movements.
  • Durability and Performance – Made from high-quality steel, these barbells are built to last. They can take a beating from heavy use and still maintain their integrity. And when it comes to performance, they’re second to none. The superior build quality gives you a stable and consistent lifting experience, especially under heavy loads.
  • Consistency in Training and Fair Competition – One of the best things about powerlifting barbells is their standardized shape and size. This means you’re training with the same equipment you’d use in competition. It’s all about creating a level playing field, ensuring that everyone’s lifting with the same specs.
  • Knurling and Grip – The aggressive knurling on these barbells is a game-changer. It gives you that secure grip you need, reducing the risk of slippage. And let’s not forget about the center knurl – it’s a small detail that makes a big difference, especially during squats, keeping the bar right where it needs to be.
  • Stiffness and Load Capacity – Powerlifting barbells are designed with less whip, which is a big deal when you’re handling very heavy weights. This stiffness means the bar won’t bend or bounce around, giving you more control. Plus, they’re built to handle high weight capacities, crucial for progressive overload and pushing your limits.
  • Predictable Behavior and Reliable Performance – With reduced whip and sturdy construction, these barbells offer predictable behavior during lifts. This predictability is key for safety, especially when you’re lifting near your max. And in terms of performance, you can count on these barbells to deliver every time, reducing the risk of equipment failure.
  • Targeted Training – Lastly, powerlifting barbells are designed specifically for powerlifters. They focus on the essential aspects of strength, grip, and stability required in the sport, making them an indispensable tool for targeted training.

Using powerlifting barbells brings numerous benefits that cater to the specific needs of strength athletes, particularly those focused on powerlifting.

Their design and construction are tailored to enhance performance, safety, and training effectiveness in powerlifting disciplines.

Frequently Asked Questions


Powerlifting barbells are essential tools designed for strength, durability, and performance in powerlifting.

Their aggressive knurling, standardized dimensions, and high tensile strength make them suitable for heavy lifts like squats, bench presses, and deadlifts.

Whether for training or competition, these barbells cater to the specific needs of powerlifters, ensuring a consistent, safe, and effective lifting experience.

Understanding their features and benefits is key to choosing the right barbell for your powerlifting journey.

Until next time,


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