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Bumper plates are rubber-coated tools that people can add to a barbell for strength-training exercises. They come in different weights and may suit individuals who lift weights for competitions. However, a person who has had a heart attack or stroke may wish to seek medical advice before weightlifting.

Bumper plates allow a person to drop a loaded barbell from an overhead position without damaging the floor.

This article will discuss what to look for in a bumper plate and provide a list of products to consider. It will also explore some health considerations and alternative products to try.

When shopping for a bumper plate, there are several factors a person can consider, including:

  • Design: People may purchase color-coded bumper plates to identify their weights easily. These bumper plates may be helpful for those exercising in a gym, as individuals can check how much weight they or others load on their bars.
  • Thickness: Thin plates allow a person to add more weights to a barbell. These may be useful for individuals who exercise regularly.
  • Center ring quality: Steel inserts prevent the plate from becoming loose on the barbell.
  • Bounce: Manufacturers construct some plates to produce minimal bounce when a person drops the barbell. After dropping them, the plates do not bounce back very high. Plates coated in virgin rubber may bounce less than those made with recycled rubber.
  • Noise: Bumper plates produce less impact noise than iron plates. They may be beneficial for people who do not want to disturb others while exercising.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried any of these products. All information presented here is purely research-based.

Rage Fitness Olympic Bumpers

These bumper plates feature a minimal bounce construction and an industrial-strength design.

They have a diameter of 17 in and a steel collar center of 2 in, so they are compatible with standard bars, racks, and sleds.

They are available in five different weights, including 10, 15, 25, 35, and 45 lb. People can also buy them individually.

Additionally, Rage Fitness offers a 30-day return policy and a 1-year warranty.

Ethos Olympic Rubber Bumper Plate

This bumper plate is available in five different weights.

It features a vulcanized rubber design, so it does not damage the floor or the surrounding environment when a person drops the bar. It also has a stainless steel insert to help the plate slide easily onto the weight bars.

Some other features include:

  • recycled rubber construction
  • quieter than iron plates
  • minimal bounce for safety
  • peel, chip, and bloom-resistance for durability

People who purchase an Ethos bumper plate can also access live workout programs for 90 days.

HulkFit Olympic Rubber Bumper Plates

HulkFit’s bumper plates come in different colors to make identifying weights easier. They are also available in different weight options, including 10, 15, 25, 35, 45, and 55 lb.

The bumper plates come with solid stainless steel inserts, featuring a minimal bounce design that can reportedly withstand repeated drops.

They have an inner ring diameter of 2 in, so people can use them with an Olympic barbell with a diameter of 2 in or less.

The company offers a 30-day return policy. Additionally, customers can register their product for a 2-year warranty on HulkFit’s website.

CAP Barbell Premium Bumper Plates

These bumper plates come in pairs, or a person can purchase them as a bundle. They come in 10, 25, 35, and 45 lb weights.

Some of their features include:

  • compatibility with Olympic barbells with a 2-inch center hole
  • rubber coating that prevents damage and reduces weight room noise
  • steel insert for a secure fit
  • odorless design

Aachen Competition Rubber Bumper Plates

Aachen’s Competition bumper plates are available in different weights. They are compatible for use during competitions, and the company claims they can withstand over 80,000 drops.

They have a diameter of 450 millimeters (mm) and a collar opening of 50.4 mm.

The tools are color-coded with white lettering and numbering for weight identification.

The plates also come with hard chrome-plated steel disc inserts and virgin rubber that Aachen claims offers a low bounce back for user safety.

The bumper plates also come with a 2-year warranty.

Bumper plates can help people engage in strength training and weightlifting exercises.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people should get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity each week. A person can also combine their exercises to meet these guidelines.

The CDC also suggests that Individuals engage in muscle-strengthening activities twice a week, as these target multiple muscle groups.

The American Heart Association states that strength-training exercises may help with:

It also recommends that individuals seek medical advice if they have had a heart attack or stroke and want to work out.

BreastCancer.org notes that strength exercises may be beneficial for people who have had breast cancer surgery, as they may help with fixing muscle imbalance and muscle weakness.

However, health experts state that strength exercises can cause tiny tears in muscle tissue. Allowing 48 hours between workout sessions helps those tiny tears recover and build more strength.

A 2016 systematic review notes that weight-training sports appear to have relatively low rates of injury compared with common team sports. The most common injuries associated with weight-training exercises occur in the shoulder, lower back, knee, elbow, and wrist. People may also experience tendinitis and strains or sprains.

People may consider using other tools for strength training and weightlifting exercises, such as:

  • Dumbbells: These weights are available in different types, shapes, weights, and materials. The American Council on Exercise says that dumbbells allow people to perform lateral lunges, triceps kickbacks, and renegade rows.
  • Kettlebells: Kettlebells are dome-shaped with a single handle and come in a variety of weights. People can also use adjustable kettlebells that do not take up a lot of space compared to kettlebell sets.
  • Resistance bands: These are elastic bands that vary in tightness. Individuals can perform biceps curls, squats, and lunges with resistance bands.
  • Bodyweight exercises: These include pushups and pullups, as they target the upper body, lower back, and abdominal areas.

Bumper plates can be a valuable tool for Olympic weightlifting — they usually feature a rubber coating and do not cause any damage to the floor or the surrounding environment. They can also be very durable and withstand thousands of drops.

Bumper plates allow people to train without disturbing others as they reduce noise when a person drops the weighted bar.

Individuals may consider exploring different manufacturers before making a purchase. They may also wish to consider using other tools to help them reach their fitness goals.

However, those with underlying health conditions should seek medical help before practicing strength-training exercises.