When you want to get a high-intensity workout at home, weight plates are the answer. Weight plates give you versatility and the potential for a lot of weight, which can help you reach your toning and muscle-building goals in no time. Free weight workouts with weight plates are key to leveling up and reaching new heights in your fitness. In this article, we created a shortlist of the top weight plates that you need to crank up the intensity of your workouts.

Make sure you read our buying checklist before you browse around for your weight plate set! Another thing you can’t forget: you must take good care of your new weight plate set if you want it to last. These weight plates need various accessories for usage and storage. Don’t worry! In the article, we’ve included some helpful tips on how to care for your equipment and other items you may need to purchase.

What are weight plates?

Weight Plates For Your WorkoutIf you have little experience with heavier lifting, it’s easy to think that all weight plates are the same. They are just those big, heavy plates on the end of barbells, right? Yes, and no.

Weight plates come in several varieties, and some are more versatile than others. Weight plates can be set up on power racks for barbell workouts like squats and bench presses. We can also use them on other exercise equipment like leg press machines that target key leg muscle groups. For a complete guide that will help you through the process of picking out exercise equipment for your home, click here.

What are weight plates used for?

Weight plates are essential for adding substantial weight to your workouts (and gaining substantial muscle). Anyone who’s looking to bulk up and increase muscle mass must do more than take effective weight gainer supplements – you must also lift weights. So, having some at home in the form of weight plates is extremely helpful.

However, even if muscle gain is not your main goal, research shows that weight resistance training is also effective for people who are trying to lose weight and keep the weight off (1).

Increased muscle mass goes far beyond just looking good, it is also important for:

  • Improved posture
  • Increased metabolism
  • Better hormone profile
  • Increased flexibility
  • Improved vitality and longevity
  • Reduced risk of illness and injury
  • Increased bone density

Regardless of your situation, make sure you get approval from your doctor to engage in weight-bearing exercise. It is important that you understand your limitations in order to avoid injury.

What types of weight plates are out there?

Here are 2 common types of weight plates you will find on the market:

  1. Olympic Weight Plates: Olympic weight plates are used in weightlifting competitions. They are usually paired with a 2-inch diameter barbell, however, they can be used on 1-inch diameter barbells with proper adapters. Olympic weights are the most preferred type since we can use them on a larger-diameter barbell that will not bend under excessive weight.
  2. Standard Weight Plates: Standard weight plates generally only fit on a 1-inch diameter barbell. You may see them also referred to as “1-inch weight plates.” Since standard plates only have a 1-inch hole in the center, standard plates will look smaller than Olympic weight plates of the same weight. These types of plates are usually cheaper than the Olympic weights.

What’s the best material for this equipment?

In your search for home weight plates, you may notice that some plates have a rubber coating while others do not. Conventional weight plates are loud and clank when you move the plates and workout with them. They also are at a higher risk of rusting and getting damaged when dropped.

Rubber weight plates have a rubber shell that surrounds the plate. This rubber shell acts as a buffer when the plates are dropped or collide against each other. Rubber plates can be more expensive than other weight plates, but they typically last longer because of the added protection. The rubber coating will also protect your floors if dropped.

Now that you understand the different types of weight plates and materials available, check our review below on the top-rated weight plates on the market. Before you go searching for your weight plate set, don’t forget to read our buying checklist so that you can get the best weight plates that fit your needs. There are a lot of factors that influence your decision when buying weight plates. Take the time and do it right!

Best Olympic Weight Plates

XMark Texas Star Signature Series Olympic Plate Weights by XMark Fitness

XMark Texas Star Signature Series Olympic Plate Weights by XMark FitnessThis weight plate set is compatible with a 2-inch diameter barbell. Check out the highlights below for details on this product’s ergonomic design.

  • Weight sets range from 95 lbs to 155 lbs (various weights in one set)
  • Ergonomic design includes hand grips and open spaces for easy handling when moving plates on and off the barbell
  • Rubberized coating for product protection
  • Total product weight depends on the weight set purchased.
Who Makes It:

A specialist in heavy-duty fitness equipment like free weights and plate weights, XMark Fitness is an excellent company. Besides new equipment, they also sell reconditioned equipment, which is equipment that’s been lightly used. This is a great budget option for those who don’t mind purchasing used equipment such as a weight set or weight set accessories. XMark checks equipment for quality and safety, so you can still work out with this used equipment with confidence, knowing you’re safe.

The Bottom Line:

This is a heavy-duty set that is suitable for people who have a variety of weight lifting abilities. Those who are just beginning heavy weight training should opt for weight sets on the lower end. If you think you will need more than 155 lbs on your barbell, however, consider buying multiple weight sets. As with other rubberized weight plates, this product will be able to withstand long-term, heavy-duty usage for years to come.

CAP Barbell 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plate by CAP Barbell

CAP Barbell 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plate by CAP BarbellThey sell this Olympic weight plate as individual plates and would be great for someone who doesn’t want to purchase a whole weight plate set.

  • Cast-iron material (no rubber coating)
  • This product is sold as individual weights (not a weight set)
  • Plates range from 2.5 lbs to 45 lbs per plate
  • Ergonomic design includes hand grips and open spaces for easy handling when moving plates on and off the barbell
Who Makes It:

CAP Barbell has been in the fitness industry for over 25 years. Upon startup, CAP Barbell only sold free weights and weight benches, however, their product lines have expanded to include over 1000 products in 30 categories of fitness equipment. They have branches all over the United States in Los Angeles, Houston, Savannah, Chicago, and Newark

The Bottom Line:

If you are looking to incorporate weight plate training into your home workout, but don’t want the expense and hassle of storing an entire weight set, this would be a great option for you. Since they sell this product as individual plates, you can buy as few as 2 plates (so you have an even load on each side of the barbell). This is also great for someone who is looking for low-weight plates since CAP Barbell offers plates as low as 2.5 lbs. On the contrary, if you already have a complete weight set at home, you may not need to buy a whole other set of plates. This product could be a great way to add a couple more plates to your collection when you need more weight as your strength increases.

Olympic Bumper Plate Solid Rubber with Steel Insert by X Training Equipment

Olympic Bumper Plate Solid Rubber with Steel Insert by X Training EquipmentThis Olympic weight plate product was ranked as an “Amazon’s Choice” product. With a 4.5 out of 5-star rating by customers and flashy color choices, it’s obvious why this product made the list.

  • This product is sold as individual weights (not a weight set)
  • Plates range from 10 lbs to 45 lbs per plate
  • This company also offers colored weight sets on Amazon.com; Search around for their different plate colors like pink, yellow, red, green, black, and blue
  • Rubberized coating for product protection
Who Makes It:

X Training Equipment is based out of Florida and has been in the fitness industry for over 15 years. Diversify your workout with X Training Equipment’s speed ropes, timers, gymnastics rings, and sandbags!

The Bottom Line:

If you want to jazz up your home workout space, these colorful weight plates may be enticing to you. Whatever inspires you to work out, right? They also sell these as individual plates, so if you don’t have the space or the money for entire weight sets, this product may be a better option for you.

Best Standard Weight Plates

Standard Weight Plate (Black) by CAP Barbell

Standard Weight Plate (Black) by CAP BarbellAside from this standard weight plate having 4 out of 5 stars, this product has over 460 customer reviews. You can be sure to get all your questions answered by people who have used these weight plates firsthand. This standard plate weight product is also an “Amazon’s Choice” product.

  • This product is sold as individual weights (not a weight set)
  • Plates range from 1.25 lbs to 50 lbs
  • Compatible with a 1-inch standard barbell
  • Coated in baked enamel to prevent chipping
Who Makes It:

CAP Barbell reappears on this list most likely because free weights are what CAP Barbell specialized in from the birth of the company. It seems they have weight plates down to a science!

The Bottom Line:

If you are someone who wants to get fit and buff on a budget, standard weight plates like this one are a great option. Remember: Standard plate weights tend to be cheaper than Olympic weights! This standard weight plate product offers a wide range of weight options, so it can accommodate the weight needs of many.

Standard 1-Inch Cast Iron Weight Plates by Yes4All

Standard 1-Inch Cast Iron Weight Plates by Yes4AllThis standard weight plate product is sold both in pairs and individual plates. It achieved a great rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars in customer reviews. This product has a 5-year warranty and 60-day return policy, so you can rest assured that you will get the best weight plates for you (or you get your money back)

  • Sold in pairs or as individual weight plates
  • Plates range from a 5 lbs pair (10 lbs total) or 25 lbs single plates
  • Compatible with a 1-inch standard barbell
  • Coated in black paint to prevent rust
Who Makes It:

Yes4All is a newer brand that was established in 2010. Aside from weight plates, they sell other fitness equipment, yoga accessories, pet products, car products, and home appliances. They pride themselves on their young, innovative workforce that brings creativity to the forefront of their brand. They hope to be the #1 retailer of indoor and outdoor products in their industry.

The Bottom Line:

This standard weight set would be great for the average weight lifter since you can start within a minimum weight of 10 lbs on the bar. One thing you should keep in mind is that this product may be subject to scratching. It also is not rubberized, so if you don’t mind the clanking, this may be a fine, lower-priced product for you!

Rubber Coated Weight Plate by CAP Barbell

Rubber Coated Weight Plate by CAP BarbellThis product blends together the expertise of CAP Barbell, the benefits of rubberized weight plates, and the value of standard barbells. It is a rather simple weight plate, but it can help you reach your muscle building and toning goals without all the frills!

  • This product is sold as individual weights (not a weight set)
  • Plates range from 2.5 lbs to 25 lbs
  • Compatible with a 1-inch standard barbell
  • Rubberized coating for product protection
Who Makes It:

Yet again, CAP Barbells reappears on this list! This is one of many weight plates options that they manufacture. If you are interested in CAP Barbell, you can find both Olympic and standard weight plates that come with or without rubber.

The Bottom Line:

If you want a lower-priced weight plate that is quiet and won’t clank when you’re putting it on the barbell or weight machine, this product is the key to your happiness and satisfaction! Consider purchasing this no-frills weight plate for your home workout space. One thing to consider with this product: The highest weight is 25 lbs, so you may need multiple in order to meet your weight training needs.

The Essential Checklist Before You Make Your Purchase

Man Choosing Weight Plates For His BarbellNow that you have seen the list of several weight plate options out on the market, you can see that there are various styles and materials used with these products. To refine your search, you need to understand your needs and the benefits of each type of weight plate available. You will also need to understand the full cost of using weight plates, which includes the necessary accessories and optional accessories. Here is a checklist that will help you understand some of the main factors that play a role in choosing the best weight plates for you:

Your Weight Plate Needs:

Think about how much weight you may need to reach your fitness goals. Lower-weight plates can be used for cardio and endurance training. Heavier weights can be used to bulk up. You should also consider what your strength level is now and where you want it to be in the future. Using weights that are way too heavy for you to lift is both impossible and dangerous. Consider visiting a personal trainer to determine what weight is appropriate for you now and as you get stronger.

Type of Barbell You’re Using:

Make sure you know the differences between Olympic weight plates and standard weight plates (see the types of weight plates above). Remember: 2-inch diameter barbells are stronger and can hold more weight than 1-inch diameter barbells without bending the bar. If you already have a barbell, be sure to buy the weight plate that is compatible with your barbell. Olympic weights are more versatile and can fit on 2-inch barbells and 1-inch barbells with adapters. Standard plates can only fit on 1-inch barbells.

Necessary Accessories:

The cost of weights can skyrocket if you need a large set to continue to challenge yourself physically. You will also need something on which to use the weight plates like a barbell or an appropriate strength training machine. That can be a whole other cost! We also recommended using weight clamps so it secures the weight plates during your workout. You will also need a proper weight plate storage rack and squat or power rack on which to rest your barbell.

Optional Accessories:

You may want to have some optional accessories to improve your weight lifting experience. Consider weight belts that provide support for your back when weight lifting. You may also want to purchase padded exercise gloves or barbell pads that cushion your neck when doing barbell squats. The more comfortable the experience, the more likely you will actually workout on your exercise equipment. This is important because adherence and consistency are crucial to producing the results you desire.

Understand the Fine Print:

Be alert when buying these weight plates! Read the fine print so you know exactly what will be coming in the mail. Some weight plates are sold as sets while others are sold individually. You may need to really read the product description to know if it has a 2-inch hole or 1-inch hole. Make sure you are getting what you want!

Things to Consider When Using Your New Equipment

  1. Regardless of which weight plates you choose, don’t forget to clear out ample space wherever the plates (and associated equipment) will be used. Make sure you also have enough space to maneuver the weight plates onto the barbell, machine, or storage rack. No one wants to squeeze through tight spaces with heavy weights!
  2. With exercise equipment ownership, you also gain the job of cleaning and maintaining the weight plates. Frequently check the plates for cracks, rust, or other damage prior to using them.
  3. Make sure you store your weight plates properly on a weight rack! Avoid dropping free weights to prevent damage to your floor, furniture, equipment, and yourself. Also, sometimes dropping weight plates can really startle people, so be courteous to those you live with. Remember to purchase rubberized weight plates if you don’t want all the clanking!
  4. Consider using a spotter when doing free weight and weight plate exercises. Spotters like an able-bodied friend or a family member are not only beneficial for safety, but they can also be a source of motivation and competition to push you harder. Studies show that working out with a companion is a more positive experience.
  5. If you have children or pets, consider how you can safely store your weight plates. You may opt to leave your weight plates on the barbell, but use clamps and keep pets and children locked out of your fitness area. If keeping them locked out is not an option, store all weight plates in a locked closet or cabinet. Use care when using free weights, plated weights, and barbells to avoid injury to yourself and those you care about.

The Bottom Line on Purchasing Weight Plates for Your Home

Weight plates are the key to increasing your strength via heavy weight lifting. They are highly versatile and can increase the intensity of your workouts. You can reach your fitness goals by customizing the weight plates and workouts that are most appropriate for you. Strength training with free weights, weight plates, and resistance machines can help you look better, feel stronger, do daily tasks more efficiently, relieve chronic pain, and prevent future injury.

After reading this article, if you find yourself struggling to remember all the key things to consider when buying and using weight plates, refer to our tips and buying checklist above to help you refocus your search. Weight plates and associated exercises can be big steps for some people, but they also yield big results for your fitness abilities. By focusing on purchasing the weight plates that best fit your needs, you can be safely and effectively reaching your strength goals in no time!

What are the most important factors for choosing weight plates? Cost? Rubber coating? Color choices? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.