X Training Elite Competition Barbell Review

This versatile bar features a high tensile strength at a very reasonable price point. 

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If you’re in the market for a new barbell that is capable of handling your powerlifting, cross-training, or Olympic lifting needs, the X Training Elite Competition Bar is one you may want to consider. It has an elite tensile strength rating of 215,000 PSI, putting it toe-to-toe with some of the highest-rated barbells, but it’s available at a budget price.

The knurling on this jack-of-all-trades bar is not abrasive, which makes it ideal for high-frequency lifts. While the absence of a center knurling may not be what you want for back squats, you do have a decreased chance of causing skin irritation during Olympic or CrossFit lifts. Since this bar is available at a lower price point compared to other bars of similar durability and strength, we think this is a solid option to consider adding to your home gym — especially if you are on a tight budget.

Main Takeaways

  • The X Training Elite Competition Barbell has a tensile strength rating of 215,000 PSI, making it a top-tier barbell as many barbells cap out at around 235,000 PSI.
  • The bronze bushings spin at a controlled rate, so you can still focus on your bench press without them spinning out of control.
  • This barbell is available at a really low price tag compared to other bars that have a similar tensile strength rating. You’ll often find barbells with a rating this high to cost around $400, while this bar is only around $230.
X Training Elite Competition Barbell
X Training Elite Competition Barbell
X Training Elite Competition Barbell

The X Training Elite Competition Barbell has a 215,000 PSI tensile strength, and features medium, dual knurl marks. This bar is made with alloy steel and has a black chrome finish — plus, its oil-impregnated bronze bushings provide a great spin.

X Training Elite Competition Barbell Video Review

Our reviews writer, Jake, tests out this high-quality barbell for himself. Watch his full video for a breakdown of the features, the price, and the pros and cons of this bar.

X Training Elite Competition Barbell Highlights

The beauty of having a multi-purpose barbell like the X Training Elite Competition Bar is that you can seamlessly switch from bench pressing to a clean and jerk. You have the bronze bushings in the loading sleeves to thank for this as they decrease the torque on your elbows and wrists, which can make it easier to perform any lift that requires the bar to rotate in your hands (such as a hang clean). While some veteran lifters may find the knurling isn’t abrasive enough, this bar can handle super heavy weight because of its high tensile strength rating, which they will appreciate. In layman’s terms, the tensile strength tells you how strong the barbell is, and this rating typically ranges anywhere between 120,000 PSI to around 235,000 PSI.

Jake Squatting with the X Training Elite Competition Bar
Jake Squatting with the X Training Elite Competition Bar

Since this bar is rated at 215,000 PSI, it’s in an elite category, but its price tag is much lower than other elite barbells. Plus, X Training also includes a lifetime warranty with your purchase that covers any manufacturing defects. The Elite Competition Barbell is coated in black chrome, which gives it a really nice aesthetic appeal and will provide some protection from corrosion — though not at the same rate as a stainless steel bar can. The sleeves do have a bit of a grooved pattern, which is designed to help keep your weight plates or bumper plates in place during your workout. However, we felt as if they weren’t cut as deep as some competitor bars that we have reviewed, so we suggest snagging a pair of weight collars for your own safety. 

Who Should Buy the X Training Elite Competition Barbell

  • Customers looking for a high-quality barbell at a really low price should definitely consider the X Training Elite Competition Bar. 
  • Anyone wanting a versatile bar that can handle a variety of workouts — such as benching, squatting, deadlifting, and even power cleaning — will appreciate this bar.
  • The high tensile strength rating of 215,000 PSI here is ideal for virtually any level weightlifter. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the X Training Elite Competition Barbell

  • Powerlifters may not find the knurling on this bar able to satisfy their grip requirements.
  • While the black chrome can help corrosion from forming, if you live in a humid environment, you may want to consider a stainless steel bar for top-notch corrosion protection. 
  • If you want a barbell that has a center knurl, you should look elsewhere. 

Price

With a price tag around $230, you will be hard-pressed to find a better deal for a barbell of this caliber. Oftentimes, you’ll find a barbell at this price point to have a much lower tensile strength rating than the X Training Elite Competition Bar.

X Training Elite Competition Bar Knurling
X Training Elite Competition Bar Knurling

If you don’t already have a power rack or a squat rack, and are looking to build out your home gym, this is really going to allow you to do so. Since you’re saving a couple hundred dollars, you can spend that money on a weight bench, some weight plates, or even some free weights like dumbbells. While you could likely find a barbell for an even lower price, it most likely won’t be of the same durability or strength as this bar.

Overall Build and Quality

The X Training Elite Competition Barbell is a multi-purpose barbell that was forged with alloy steel. The black chrome coating is going to help resist corrosion from forming, and it has an impressive tensile strength rating of 215,000 PSI. The bronze bushings here are what allow you to perform a variety of lifts — plus, they’re cheaper than bearings and wear down at a slower rate. The implementation of grooved sleeves can also assist in keeping your plates in place while lifting.

This bar comes in both 20-kilogram and 15-kilogram builds, meaning it can accommodate the majority of lifters. The 20-kilogram bar is 86 inches in length, has 16.5-inch loading sleeves, and has a diameter of 28 millimeters. The 15 kg bar is 79 inches long, has 12.5-inch loading sleeves, and boasts a diameter of 25 millimeters. Something worth mentioning is that a few other brands offer 10kg barbells, but you won’t find that option here.

Features

The black chrome on this barbell can assist in increasing its lifespan, but you will need to provide it with more care than you would a stainless steel bar. The knurling is not abrasive, so your hands won’t get torn up — but it may not provide enough grip for some people. If you find that your hands are slipping, you may need to invest in some chalk.

Jake Bench Pressing with the X Training Elite Competition Bar
Jake Bench Pressing with the X Training Elite Competition Bar

There are double knurl marks on this bar, which allow you to accurately place your hands for your lifts. And the grooved sleeves are ideal in barbells such as these since they’re designed to handle Olympic lifts where the bar is often dropped. When dropped, your weight plates may slide down the loading sleeves, and a grooved pattern is meant to decrease that slide. 

Knurling

While the knurling on this bar is designed to be non-abrasive, we felt that it was a little underwhelming. We have reviewed similar barbells and found that we were able to get a better grip than we were with the X Training Elite Competition Bar. So, you may need to invest in some chalk or even a pair of lifting gloves

The double knurl markings are common in barbells like this, but not always included — it was nice that they did implement them here in order to achieve identical hand placement for your lifts. Since this bar does not have a center knurl, it may be less than ideal for your back squats, but if you are big into Olympic lifting, you may appreciate that feature.

Sleeve Design

While browsing the market, you’ll find that not all barbells share the same type of loading sleeve construction. The X Training Elite Competition Barbell has a grooved pattern, which is designed to assist in keeping your weight plates in place. However, we noticed the grooves weren’t cut as deep as some other brands, which may not provide the assistance you need. In that case, you may want to get yourself a pair of weight collars. 

X Training Elite Competition Bar Bronze Bushings
X Training Elite Competition Bar Bronze Bushings

The bronze bushings in the loading sleeves create a controlled spin for your explosive lifts. However, they don’t spin out of control, which makes it easy to switch up your lift and focus on your powerlifting movements. 

Finish

The black chrome finish on this barbell is going to give it a nice look in your home gym but also prevents some rust and corrosion from damaging your barbell. However, you will want to invest in a care kit, since it won’t provide the highest level of protection that you’ll find from a fully stainless steel barbell. 

Product Specs

Because the Elite Competition Barbell has such a high tensile strength, we believe it’s a good option for any level weightlifter to consider adding to their home gym. Since the tensile strength is 215,000 PSI, beginners can grow with this bar, and it may be the only one they ever need. Elite lifters can also find solid usage out of it, as well, because it can take such a beating. Since it comes in two sizes, the dimensions of this bar are comparable to both men’s and women’s Olympic barbells.

Tensile Strength 

A big factor in determining the quality of a barbell is the tensile strength rating — the higher the rating, the stronger the bar. Since this bar is on the high end of the spectrum with a rating of 215,000 PSI (the highest rating is around 235,000 PSI), it’s in the same category as some barbells that are twice its price. 

Materials

The materials used to forge a barbell are going to play a factor in the price, and the overall caliber of the bar. Since the Elite Competition Bar has a black chrome finish, you are going to have some success in fighting off corrosion. However, if you live in a humid environment, or your gym is in a garage, you will most likely need to take more care of this bar than you would a stainless steel bar.

Gripping the X Training Elite Competition Bar
Gripping the X Training Elite Competition Bar

Bronze bushings in the loading sleeves cause them to spin, but they’re also cheaper than bearings. You’ll often find bearings in Olympic barbells, but they degrade faster than bushings do.

Weight Capacity

With a barbell that has a tensile strength as high as this one does, you will be able to load up super heavy weight for your lifts. The actual weight capacity is not listed on the X Training website, but with a barbell of this tensile strength — you can rest assured that it can handle 1,200 pounds (or maybe even more).

Dimensions and Weight

Since there are two different weight choices for this bar, the dimensions are also different. The 20-kilogram bar has a length of 86 inches with 16.5-inch loading sleeves and a diameter of 28 millimeters. The 15-kilogram bar is 79 inches long with 12.5-inch loading sleeves, and a 25-millimeter diameter. Both of these barbells share the same dimensions as men’s and women’s Olympic barbells.

Warranties

X Training includes a lifetime warranty with their Elite Competition Barbell. This warranty does not cover normal wear and tear, or negligent use such as improper storage, but it does cover any manufacturing defects.

Places to Buy

You can purchase this barbell directly through the X Training website.

Company Information

Located in Jacksonville, Florida, X Training has been manufacturing gym equipment since 2012. They offer a wide variety of high-quality equipment at affordable prices. If you want to find out more about their company and their policies, you can call them directly at 877-348-7464, or email their customer service team at [email protected].

Final Word

The X Training Elite Competition Barbell is a highly versatile bar with solid tensile strength, and it’s available at a pretty low price point. The tensile strength is equivalent to that of other more prominent barbells out there, but those are typically almost double the price. Because of that high tensile strength, we believe this bar can offer solid usage for pretty much any level weightlifter. The knurling on this barbell is not very abrasive, which may be problematic for some lifters who have tough hands. We found that we weren’t able to keep a solid grip throughout the duration of our workout as our hands began to sweat, but this could be countered by some chalk. If you are a beginner though, it may provide a grip that services you since it won’t tear up your hands. 

At the end of the day, the X Training Elite Competition Barbell is able to go toe-to-toe with some of the most prominent barbells on the market. While it’s not stainless steel, you will have success in preventing corrosion just as long as you provide it with some extra care. Because it has such a high tensile strength rating and is available for a fraction of the price that other brands charge for similar barbells, we believe this is a great option for home gym owners. 

FAQs

Does the X Training Elite Competition Barbell have a good tensile strength rating?

Yes, a tensile strength rating of 215,000 PSI is very good — you’ll be hard pressed to find another bar this strong at this price point.

How much does the X Training Elite Competition Bar Cost?

This barbell is listed at right around $230. This is a great price considering the tensile strength rating and the versatility of this bar, and this deal should help allow you to fully kit out your home gym.

Why does the X Training Elite Competition Barbell have bronze bushings?

Bronze bushings are commonly found in multi-purpose barbells like this. They’re going to create a controlled spin for your lifts. They’re also cost effective, and should degrade at a slower rate than bearings.