Push-ups are a classic upper body building exercise that can be done almost anywhere. Push-up bars are a way to add a variety of grips, positions, and difficulty levels, not to mention making it easier on athletes’ wrist joints.
The market is flush full of push-up bars fashioned with different features to stand out from the field. Most of those push-up bars highlight their choice of rotational or stationary base and style of grip. Let’s get in position and find the best push-up bars for you.
Best for Travel
Sweat Absorbent and Strong
- Can be disassembled for easier storage.
- Designed to be more comfortable for wrists.
- Rubber caps on each end can offer better stability.
- Grips may gain an odor over time.
- Assembly required.
These push-up bars are constructed with industrial grade PVC, employ a three step assembly process, and are designed to reduce strain on wrists. Both bars have sweat absorbent comfort grips.
Best Heavy Duty Option
Thick and supportive.
- Abrasion resistant TPR handle covers.
- Angled handles might help prevent wrist fatigue.
- Can also be used to perform dips and V-sits.
- Base welding may not be at 90 degree angles.
- On the more expensive end of the market.
These push-up bars are made with durable steel construction that can support up to 2,200lb. Each end has a crossbar with opposing rubber caps to better maintain stability during training. They measure 13 inches long by 8 inches wide by 8.5 inches high.
Smooth rotation and lightweight.
- Treads on the bottom of each base can allow for better grip on a wider variety of surfaces.
- Can support up to four hundred pounds which can benefit more experienced athletes who want to add weight to their push-ups (via weight vests and the like).
- Ergonomic grips distribute weight more evenly, potentially relieving pressure on the wrist and elbow joints.
- The handles do not have any cushioning.
- May arrive with a strong cleaning fluid odor.
This push-up bars are a pair of ergonomic handles each of which is on a rotational base. The pair has a combined weight of four pounds and employ a steel ball bearing system to ensure smooth rotation over the long-term.
Bottom grips for less slips.
- Non-textured grip might be softer on palms and ease pressure on wrists.
- May fit the lifestyle of an avid traveler as they are lightweight and portable.
- The package includes a free jump-rope.
- Flat-top handles may make wide or narrow push-ups more difficult to perform.
- May rotate too easily, making stabilizing more difficult.
These push-up bars are built with plastic flat-top handles with a smooth grip with rotating bases. They are lightweight at only one pound each with additional gripping on their bottoms for better traction. A jump-rope is included.
Steel frame assists weight dispersal.
- Utilizes five textured rubber grip pads under the base to prevent slips.
- Includes a trio of weighted ring grips to assist beginners.
- On the more affordable end of the market.
- Might not rotate quite as smoothly as comparable options.
- Handle size likely not compatible with athletes with larger hands.
These push-up Bars incorporates a steel roller framework to sustain clean rotation during exercise. The slight curve of the handle aims to distribute weight uniformly throughout the push-up movement. The pair is just over two pounds and is designed to function on all floor surfaces.
The major discrepancy between grips will most likely depend on whether or not the base rotates. For stationary push-up bars, a cushioned grip seems to be standard, but the kind of cushioning varies from product to product.
If you are someone who prefers less pressure on your palms, definitely seek out the heavier cushioned push-up bars. They may make the grip thicker, which can make push-ups more difficult for athletes with smaller hands, but being comfortable throughout the movement is more important.
For push-up bars with bases that do rotate, padding may be a bit more scarce. However, there are push-up bars available with ergonomic handles that can move with your wrist, relieving pressure both on the wrist joint itself and your palms.
As mentioned above, if there is a preference for a static base vs. a rotating base, that will help narrow the options down significantly. From there, the choices get a tad more subjective, but there are still some factors to be on the lookout for.
For those that prefer stable bases, keep an eye out for the height of the push-up bars. There isn’t a standard height on the market and some are high enough that using them with your feet on the ground positions you more so for incline push-ups rather than standard push-ups. If you’re comfortable propping your feet up to level out the height of the push-up bars, the benefits of the added depth can go a long way in training.
When it comes to the rotating bases, the main factor to focus on is the shape of the handle. Fixed handles that are not cylindrical in shape are going to be a bit tougher to perform anything beyond standard push-ups without significant effort.
No matter the style of push-up bars you prefer, one thing is for sure: they are capable of improving your push-up form and help you gain upper body strength. So find the right pair, an open floor space, and start pushing.