Best Curl Bars for Olympic Weights, Standard Weights, And More

Discover which curl bar can help you progress your upper body training regimen.

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Curl bars are an equipment staple of any upper body training program. They’re particularly helpful in building biceps strength — curl bars can effectively target both the short head and the long head. But aside from your biceps, curl bars can also allow you to work your triceps and forearms, making them a great tool to support any upper body day in the gym.

As fitness equipment has modernized, so have curl bars. They range from cable machine attachments to curvy barbells that support free weights. Some curl bars are straight while others come in a squiggle shape reminiscent of a slightly heightened sound wave. To help you avoid trawling through every offering on the web, we’ve done the grunt work and created a list of what we think are the best curl bars available to you.

Best Curl Bars

Best Curl Bar Overall

When looking for a great curl bar, it’s ideal to target products with top notch manufacturing quality, ergonomic design, and great customer service from the parent company. Rogue has built a lot of trust with its customers, and this high-quality curl bar is our top pick. 

Rogue Curl Bar

A cambered bar with a medium knurl and e-coating, Rogue has created a tool that is ideally suited to help each user attain the reps they need for progress. Made from solid steel, it has a 28.5 mm diameter, and the 10.5 inch long sleeve provides plenty of room to add load as you need. Made in the US, it comes with a five-year warranty to back up Rogue’s high quality manufacturing — as long as you’re cleaning up any sweat or water after your workout is over, we see no reason why it shouldn’t last you a lifetime. 

Rogue Curl Bar
Rogue Curl Bar
Rogue Curl Bar

The Rogue Curl Bar offers high quality manufacturing that is backed by Rogue’s five-year warranty. This cambered, solid steel bar is built to last athletes a lifetime.

Who Should Buy the Rogue Curl Bar

  • Buyers who want a strong bar with excellent tensile strength.
  • Lifters looking for a curl bar with a choice of different finishes.
  • Folks who want a bar that comes with a generous five-year warranty.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Rogue Curl Bar

  • Athletes who need a bar that can be used as a cable machine attachment.
  • Trainees with a smaller budget — this quality bar is on the pricier side.
  • Anyone looking for a bar with a wider variety of grip angles.

You get what you pay for with this high quality bar — it isn’t cheap, but it’s well cambered and has a solid steel build ensuring you’ll get through even the toughest of lifting sessions. 

Best Curl Bar for the Money

This pick has features — like a chrome finish and medium knurl — that compete with higher end options, but it comes at a much more affordable price point. 

REP EZ Curl Bar

Needle bearings have traditionally been reserved for high end Olympic bars to reduce wrist strain, but this bar features both needle bearings and bushing in each sleeve for a great value. The hard chrome finish is resistant to wear and tear, and the medium depth knurl means that you can sweat it out and still retain a decent grip. The REP EZ Curl Bar has great longevity, remains low maintenance, and comes at a reasonable price.

Rep EZ Curl Bar
Rep EZ Curl Bar
Rep EZ Curl Bar

A bar that packs high end features into a mid-range price, the Rep EZ Curl Bar is a solid choice if you’re a value-conscious customer in search for a quality product.

Who Should Buy the REP EZ Curl Bar

  • Anyone looking for a high quality but affordable curl bar.
  • Those who want a bar with options of different coatings.
  • Gym goers looking for a bar with knurling that isn’t overly aggressive for decent grip and less skin abrasion.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the REP EZ Curl Bar

  • Folks looking for a bar that can be used with cable machines as an attachment.
  • Athletes who want a bar with more angles and grip options.

With a set of features you’d expect on a bar priced much higher than this, the REP Fitness EZ Curl Bar is great value for your money — and the knurling and coating on this bar won’t leave you disappointed.

Best High-End Curl Bar

For the individual who wants a super high quality curl bar they can use in a rack, this versatile pick is both extra long and rackable. 

Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

You won’t find any sub-par qualities in this curl bar — made with 110,000 PSI precision bent steel, the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar comes with the same snap ring designed sleeves and bronze bushings that Rogue uses in many of its Olympic barbells. It also features added length compared to standard curl bars, which makes it easy to use in standard racks, saving you time and effort while training. It’s worth noting, however, that with this high quality also comes a higher price tag, so those on a budget may need to look elsewhere. 

Rogue Rackable Curl Bar
Rogue Rackable Curl Bar
Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

If you’re looking for top notch equipment, the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar should be on your radar — it’s strong, adaptable, and has a great warranty to back up its high quality manufacturing.

Who Should Buy the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

  • Customers who want a high quality, long-lasting curl bar for their home gym.
  • People looking for a curl bar that can be racked on standard racks during rest periods.
  • Anyone who wants a very strong curl bar with 110,000 PSI tensile strength.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

  • Consumers who prefer a smaller bar that requires less storage space.
  • Trainees on a tighter budget — this bar is more expensive than most.
  • Lifters who want a bar they can use with cable machines.

When it comes to this bar, you get what you pay for — while the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar is expensive, it packs in a lot of versatility, and its 110,000 PSI tensile strength cannot be beat. 

Best Curl Bar for Different Grip Angles

Mixing up your grip is a great long term strategy to ensure you keep challenging your body, avoid overtaxing one group of muscles, and keep setting PRs. This bar is ideal if you need variety in your workouts.

Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar

Offering grips with much greater angle variation than a standard curl bar, trainees who want to push their arm strength without over-taxing their relatively weaker wrists should look no further than the Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar. Newly updated sleeves with dual copper bearings mean that the sleeve spin can also help relieve unnecessary wrist strain. Tested to hold up to 400 pounds, this 28 mm bar is sturdy enough to last for many years if cared for properly.

Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar
Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar
Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar

A surprisingly affordable option, the Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar has a great variety of grip options and can hold up to 400 pounds, providing plenty of opportunity to progress your training without overworking any one particular movement.

Who Should Buy the Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar

  • Athletes who want to avoid overtraining muscles by utilizing different grips.
  • Buyers looking for an affordable yet well-made curl bar.
  • Customers who need a bar compatible with Olympic diameter plates.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Waful Olympic Super Curl Bar

  • Those looking for a bar with a more resistant coating for better longevity.
  • Folks who prefer to buy a curl bar with a warranty in case of problems.
  • Gym goers who prefer a bar with more aggressive knurling for better grip.

An ideal choice to add some extra variety to your training, this affordable curl bar offers many variations in grip angles, which is perfect for anyone who’s worried about overtraining.

Best Curl Bar with Aggressive Knurling

Knurling is a key detail that can really change your training, aiding in a stronger grip, which is imperative particularly for anyone who sweats a lot. For those who like a more aggressive level of knurling, this pick will do the trick. 

Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar

The Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar was designed for lifters who need a little extra assistance in the grip department. Ergonomic angles allow for a more friendly wrist position while training your arms. The knurling is deep but not overly abrasive, and the cerakote coating is one of the most sweat resistant choices on the market. Manufactured using extremely high tensile strength steel, this bar is designed to absorb punishment, and it has a five-year warranty that ensures you’re covered no matter your circumstance.

Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar
Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar
Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar

If you’re looking for a firm grip on your equipment, the Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar has the knurling and coating you need to ensure that even when things get sweaty, your hands stay secure.

Who Should Buy the Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar

  • Lifters who want a bar that provides great grip for sweaty hands.
  • Athletes looking for a bar with an excellent five-year warranty.
  • People looking for a bar that has a coating that’s resistant to wear and tear over the years.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Rogue Cerakote Curl Bar

  • Anyone with more sensitive skin — this bar’s knurling is more aggressive than most.
  • Consumers on a tight budget — this bar is pricier than most curl bars.
  • Athletes who train with a higher volume and need a bar that won’t be as harsh on your hands.

While this bar is a bit pricier than most, its aggressive knurling and high quality design will ensure that even the sweatiest of athletes maintains their grip on the bar, no matter the lift. 

Best Curl Bar for Olympic Weights

Olympic diameter weights are probably the weights you see the most in gyms. If you’re planning on training with these plates, this pick is the way to go. 

Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

Compatible with all 2-inch Olympic plates, this bar is quite versatile. Built from solid steel, the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar has bronze bushings to ensure smooth spinning sleeves. The bar itself has been extended to nearly 52 inches, which means you can rack it on any standard power rack, making loading and unloading plates a breeze between sets. Plus, the e-coat finish provides solid durability, great grip performance, and even some aesthetic appeal. 

Rogue Rackable Curl Bar
Rogue Rackable Curl Bar
Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

If you’re looking for top notch equipment, the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar should be on your radar — it’s strong, adaptable, and has a great warranty to back up its high quality manufacturing.

Who Should Buy the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

  • Lifters who want a bar that can be used with their bumper plates.
  • Athletes looking for a high quality curl bar that will last a lifetime.
  • Customers who prefer a curl bar they can use with a squat rack.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Rogue Rackable Curl Bar

  • Gym goers on a tight budget — this bar is pretty expensive. 
  • Folks who want a smaller bar that can be used in tighter spaces.

While it may not be the most affordable option on this list, this bar is high quality and provides excellent longevity — just throw on some bumper plates (cast iron or urethane will work so long as they’re Olympic diameter) and you’re good to go.

Coupon

The Rogue Rackable Curl Bar is durable and versatile. It’s compatible with all Olympic diameter plates, and it comes with a five-year warranty for peace of mind.

Best Curl Bar for Standard Weights

While standard weights and the bars that accompany them come with load capacity limitations, if you’re not looking to overload, this bar provides an affordable and time-tested option to support standard weights.

AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar

Standard diameter weights may come with some limitations when it comes to heavy lifting, but they are more affordable and can still provide a great workout. The AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar is constructed from solid steel, and has a chrome finish for corrosion resistance. It can support up to 150 pounds, which should be sufficient for all but elite trainees. Plus, with the included dumbbell handles, it can be used to train just about every muscle group in the body. Very user friendly, we think this is a great option for any athlete who isn’t trying to keep up with the flashiest of trends, and just wants to progress in their training. 

AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar
AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar
AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar

An affordable option, the AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar is compatible with all standard 1-inch diameter plates, and it comes with a free pair of dumbbell handles for added versatility.

Who Should Buy the AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar

  • Those who want a bar that can be used with standard weights as opposed to olympic weights.
  • Athletes looking for a classic bar that has proven itself time and time again.
  • Buyers who want a bar that also comes with a pair of dumbbell handles.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the AboveGenius Standard EZ Curl Bar

  • Customers who need a bar that can be used with bumper plates.
  • People who dislike bars that use screw-on collars.
  • Anyone looking for a bar with a weight capacity over 150 pounds.

If you’re one who prefers using standard weight plates, this bar is the way to go — it’s high quality, well-priced, and easy to use. Plus, it comes with dumbbell handles for added versatility. 

Best Curl Bar Attachment for Cable Machines

Cable machines offer a variety of benefits and much versatility when it comes to your lifting. Plus, you have the opportunity to train even harder as cable machines provide constant tension as you perform each exercise. This bar is the perfect tool to take advantage of all cable machines have to offer.

Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar

Tested to support over 1,000 pounds in weight, this lightweight bar is only seven pounds on its own. Made from stainless steel, it has rubber grips that ensure even those who sweat heavily will retain their grasp on the bar. Perfect for all upper body work, this bar and its included carabiner allow you to attach it to any cable machine, and blast your lats, biceps, triceps and more. Fitness Invention even provides a lifetime warranty to ensure your satisfaction lasts. 

Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar
Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar
Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar

A perfect option for anyone using cable machines, the Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar is a versatile, high quality bar that can be used for arm and back training interchangeably.

Who Should Buy the Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar

  • Trainees who prefer to make use of cable machines rather than free weights.
  • Athletes looking for an attachment that can be used for arm and back exercises.
  • Those who want a product with a lifetime warranty that ensures satisfaction.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Fitness Invention LAT Pulldown Bar

  • Gym goers looking for a bar that can be used with free weights.
  • Buyers who want a bar with more of a variety of grip angles

While niche, this bar is nonetheless ideal for those who use cable machines heavily in training. It’s affordable, provides solid grip, and is easily stored, all while providing versatility in training modalities. 

What to Consider Before Buying a Curl Bar

Curl bars are relatively affordable when compared with many other barbells. That doesn’t mean that you should just buy one without taking the type of training you do — among other factors — into consideration. Here are our tips on what to consider while planning your buy. 

Your Training

If you’re looking for a curl bar, you’re likely pretty well immersed in the fitness world and interested in exploring these more niche territories. However, curl bars can be used for a variety of lifting exercises and you should consider how you plan on using your bar before deciding which one would be best for you. Do you simply need it for some variety in your training? Are you going to use it with a cable machine? Do straight barbell curls hurt your elbows? Different curl bars will suit different scenarios better than others, so be sure you’re looking for bars you can use to reach your personal goals, rather than just grabbing the cheapest one on the market. 

Your Budget

The cheapest bar on this list costs just over $50 and the most expensive curl bar will set you back $260. There are plenty of choices somewhere in between these two extremes, and your budget is for sure going to have a large impact on the bar you choose. Just don’t let money entirely rule the game — be sure you’re looking at your purchase from a functionality and quality perspective, as well, before you simply opt for the least expensive option. 

Bar Shape

Variety in training can be a tool used to help avoid injuries. Picking a bar that gives you a greater range of grip options is one way to ensure that you avoid overtraining the same parts of the body again and again. Curl bars can add variety in this department, so you can shift your training more consistently and avoid overtraining injuries.

Bar Coating

Bar coating is going to impact the usability of the bar you get in the long term. A better knurling means the bar is going to be easier to grip, even when you’re sweating a ton, and a good coating will also enhance the overall longevity of the bar. Here are some of the most common coatings, and the pros and cons associated with them.

Chrome

A thin layer of electroplated chromium applied on top of the bar itself, a hard chrome is a relatively cheap and durable option. It does however become slick when wet, which makes it hard to grip without the proper knurling — therefore, this option may not be your best bet if you’re a heavy sweater. 

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is probably the most durable option, though it isn’t an actual coating. The entire bar is made from stainless steel, which does increase the cost, as steel is long-lasting and expensive. Very rust resistant, stainless steel will develop a coloring over time that is known as a patina, but this won’t cause structural damage like rust can. Grip is usually pretty solid with stainless steel bars, as well, even when taking account of sweat.

E-Coat

An electrically applied coating method that first became widespread in the auto industry, this coating gives the bar solid resistance to wear and tear, but won’t break the bank. The downside is that it can chip off if you don’t clean your bar over the years, and it doesn’t provide quite as good a grip as some of the more expensive options.

Cerakote

A ceramic based coating that was originally developed for firearms, cerakote provides great grip, is fairly resistant to damage, and can also be colored very easily. You’ll see all kinds of customization options with this coating, so it’s a great option if you’re looking to spice up the aesthetic appeal of your home gym.

Zinc

Usually black or bright zinc, this coating is mainly used to prevent corrosion. It is a cheaper alternative, so it can rub off over time and is not particularly great for grip, especially for those who sweat quite a bit. 

Final Word

Tools can be used to help you achieve desired outcomes, and curl bars are no exception. Curl bars help target smaller muscle groups like your biceps and triceps, and they can be used to add variety to a workout that a barbell cannot provide. Whether you’re using curl bars on their own, with a rack, or as a cable machine accessory, they’re a great way to target your upper body. As with all the tools we discuss, make sure a curl bar will help you reach your fitness goals, and pick the one that’s going to fit into your plan and lifestyle most effectively. 

FAQs

I don’t want to train bodybuilding, why would I buy a curl bar?

There are plenty of reasons to train your arms even if you aren’t trying to become a bodybuilder. It makes everyday tasks like carrying a child, opening jars, lifting luggage, and maneuvering packages easier if you have strong arms. Having strong arms doesn’t just have to be about appearance or mass.

I am training arms really hard but they still aren’t growing. What gives?

It’s difficult to tell, as this varies from person to person. It could be that your training program is not difficult enough for you, you aren’t eating enough to fuel growth, you aren’t letting your body recover between sessions, or you are doing too many other activities outside of weight training. It could be any one of these factors, or it could be a combination — just take a look at your nutrition and fitness regimens, and see if any of these factors stand out to you as an area for growth.

What is a good workout for my arms?

That’s really going to depend on what your goals are. Arm workout designs will change massively depending on your desired direction. We have a few articles that are a great starting point to look though for all levels of athletes — from powerlifters to Olympic weightlifters.