Sunday, August 31, 2014

Bumper Plates - Choosing What is Best for Your Gym

Bumper plates are quite often the first piece of equipment we think about when it comes time to outfit our home gym or commercial facility.  Found in every serious functional fitness gym around the globe, bumper plates versatility and durability make them one of the highest priorities to getting outfitted well.

With the resurgence of olympic weight lifting in garage gyms and commercial facilities alike, the bumper plate is a mandatory equipment piece to protect bars and flooring.  Dropping steel weights from hip height or higher damages equipment and flooring in just a few reps and makes a lot of noise.  The rubber in bumper plates absorbs impact, greatly lessens noise and reduces or eliminates damage.

Because of the importance and heavy use that bumper plates will get in the gym, it's important to match up the best bumper plate for it's intended use.  We've got three great choices with one as the clear front runner for the commercial facility:

Hi Temp Bumper Plates - Hands down the most durable and resilient bumper plate in our inventory is the Hi Temp Recycled Rubber Bumper Plate.  The combination of recycled rubber and polymers makes for a thicker, softer plate which absorbs impact and noise the best.  And it's rougher outer texture holds up perfectly whether you are training on concrete, rubber flooring or even out in the parking lot or driveway.  The thicker design allows a maximum of 405lb bar weight [four 45lb bumper plates on each side of the bar], but the trade off in durability can't be over looked.  Hi Temp bumpers take the most abuse and keep coming back for more.

Troy VTX Bumper Plates - Ideal for the garage gym, the Troy VTX high density rubber bumper plate is a great alternative.  It's thinner, harder construction still stands up to impact but the heavier bumpers come it at a lower cost.  Troy VTX bumpers are great for the garage gym on a budget.

York Bumper Plates - York also manufactures a great garage gym bumper plate.  The thinner, high density design comes in at a lower cost but still holds up great for home gym use.  Like the Troy VTX bumper, it's best to keep these bumpers indoors and in use over rubber flooring to keep noise levels down and equipment well protected.

What is the best set of bumper plates to outfit the Garage Gym?

  • Basic Garage Gym Set - 10/10/15/25 [pairs] - This package allows the beginning level athlete the most variation of weight on the bar.  But even this starter set has enough weight to challenge higher level athletes in movements like the snatch and split jerk.  The wide range of weight you can stack on the bar will open up the most movements like the clean, snatch, front squat, overhead squat and more...  
  • Intermediate Garage Gym Set - 10/10/15/25/45 [pairs] - By adding just one set of 45lb bumper plates, the maximum load now available on the 45lb bar is 255lb.  For those with a heavy clean this set is a great upgrade.  And you can now add more challenge to static movements like the front squat and back squat.
  • Advanced Garage Gym Set - 10/10/15/25/45/45 [pairs] - Now with two sets of 45lb bumper plates, the bar can be loaded with up to 345lb.  For most, this set will provide all the challenge you could want.  Movements like the deadlift and hack squat can now be challenging as well.