Bench Press Barbell Weight: Standard, Olympic, and Variations

Written by James C., M.S.(C), PT

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When it comes to building strength and muscle, the bench press is often a go-to exercise for many fitness enthusiasts.

A crucial factor that is often overlooked, however, is the weight of the bench press barbell itself. Although a standard bench press barbell weighs around 20kg, it’s important to note that this can vary.

From standard bench press bar weights to Olympic bench press bar weights, let’s delve into the specifics.

The Standard Bench Press Bar Weight

bench press barbell weight

In the majority of gyms, you’ll find the standard bench press bar weight comes in at around 20kg, or 44lbs if you prefer the imperial system.

These bars are built for general use and can handle a wide range of weights, accommodating beginner to intermediate lifters.

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However, not all gyms use the standard bar. Especially in smaller, budget gyms, you may encounter lighter bars, potentially weighing 15kg or even less.

These are often cheaper to manufacture and can still offer a viable workout, particularly for those starting their fitness journey or rehabilitating from injury.

The Olympic Bench Press Bar Weight

bench press olympic bar barbell weight

On the other hand, we have the Olympic bench press bar weight. Used in professional settings and well-equipped gyms, these bars are usually slightly heavier than their standard counterparts.

The men’s Olympic bar typically weighs 20kg, while the women’s bar weighs 15kg. But here’s where it gets interesting – these bars are built to withstand much higher weight loads, so if you’re into serious lifting, the Olympic bar is likely your go-to tool.

Beyond the Standard: Variations in Bench Press Barbell Weights

bench press weight on bar

Even though the 20kg barbell is often considered the standard, it’s worth noting that barbell weights can sometimes differ.

This is particularly true in specialized training gyms or home gym setups, where individuals often choose barbells based on personal preference and training style.

For instance, some gyms might offer heavier bars, weighing in at 25kg or more.

These are typically designed for heavy lifters looking to push their limits.

On the flip side, lighter barbells, potentially weighing as little as 10kg, might be available for those just starting out or focusing on technique over sheer weight.


Understanding the weight of your bench press barbell is crucial for accurately tracking your progress and planning your workouts.

While the standard bench press bar weight and Olympic bench press bar weight are often around 20kg, remember that there can be significant variations. Always check the weight of the barbell at your gym before starting your workout.

Whether you’re dealing with a standard bench press bar or an Olympic bench press bar, accurate knowledge will help ensure your workout is as effective as possible.

Remember, it’s not just about lifting heavy; it’s about lifting smart! And part of that is knowing how much does a bench press barbell weigh.

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