Not only do different weight plates allow for gradual strength building, but they also provide safe workout opportunities, enabling the user to start with a less strenuous set and slowly progress to the target weight. All our weight plate products offer versatility to your workouts and optimise the exercises, whether that is standard, Olympic, cast iron or vinyl plates. Discover which one your fitness goals suit and the benefits of them here.
What Are The Benefits Of Weight Plates?
Strength and endurance training
Lifting weights will help you increase the strength of your muscles, providing you use sufficient weight. Likewise, selecting a resistance that is challenging but doesn’t push you to your limits in just a few reps will help to improve your endurance. Weight plates are ideal for both of these things, as they allow you to progressively overload your muscles as your ability improves, which is the easiest way to achieve results.
Having such a range of different, adjustable weights at your disposal can dramatically reduce the risk of injury. That is because there will never be a need to push on and try and use a weight that is too heavy for you, just because there are no other options available. You can simply swap the plates on the bar and ensure your workouts are always safe and tailored to your own abilities.
With the ability to add or remove weight as and when you please, it allows you to utilise a huge range of exercises that cover your entire body. This versatility is incredibly valuable, as it means with just a set of weight plates and a barbell, you can always have a well-rounded workout. Without worrying about the space or funds you have available.
Being able to quickly add and remove plates from a bar in between sets and exercises allows you to have the most efficient and optimised workouts possible. This is because there is almost no wasted time at all, as there is no need to be moving around, looking for and swapping equipment.
As with any piece of weightlifting equipment, the primary function of weight plates is to help you build and tone muscle by training against the various resistances they provide, gradually increasing the weights as you go. Weight plates are the best option for this, as they provide the greatest range and there is almost no limit on the level you can reach, other than your own body’s capability.
Types of weight plates
Olympic plates are those featuring a 2-inch hole in the centre and get their name as they are the variety authorised for use in Olympic competitions. They are suitable for users with an Olympic barbell.
Standard plates cover all weight plates that don’t feature a 2-inch in the middle. These are suitable for users who own a barbell of a matching diameter to the hole in the plate.
The original type of plate, available in both Olympic and regular varieties, they are made from a single piece of cast iron. They are ideal for users who have minimal space, as their incredible density means they are smaller than plates of a comparable weight made from other materials.
Another option that is available in both Olympic and regular varieties, bumper plates are made of solid, high-density rubber. They are ideal for people performing heavy, explosive lifts, as they are designed to not damage anything if they are dropped or placed aggressively back on the ground.
Vinyl plates feature a vinyl coating around a core that can be made of a number of things, including metal and concrete. They are not usually available in an Olympic variety and are best suited for those on a budget, as they are the cheapest option of the three.
Things to consider
Ensure you get enough weight to provide you with an effective workout but make sure the individual plates are in increments that you feel comfortable lifting and moving around.
If space is a concern, ensure you select the plates that you will be most capable of using and storing in the area you have. Also, consider things like diameter and width if you are worried about damaging your floor or the bar being high enough to comfortably begin a deadlift from.
Make a list of what exercises you plan to perform and consider if there is a plate best suited to those types of activity. For example, if you are planning to do a lot of explosive Olympic lifts, perhaps consider getting bumper plates, as they are designed to not cause damage if they are dropped.
Handles or raised inserts
If carrying the weight, loading it onto a bar or picking it up from the floor is a concern, perhaps consider purchasing plates with handles or raised inserts to make your life easier.
With a product that can take a real pounding if used regularly, you want to know that it is going to last. Make sure the plates you select offer a warranty or guarantee you are comfortable with before you buy them.
Make sure you check the price first as this saves you time analysing a plate, only to discover that it wasn’t in your budget, to begin with. This is especially important with a product like this, where you are likely to be purchasing more than one of them.
Weight plate maintenance
Weight plates require little to no maintenance. Clean any sweat off of them after use, especially if you have the cast-iron variety as they are prone to rusting, store them in a dry location and try not to drop them as much as possible. If you follow all of that, your plates should have a long and productive lifespan.