Barbells vs. EZ bars

By November 21, 2013 December 18th, 2015 articles, Videos

Everyone loves to work biceps! And everyone also seems to have their own personal preference when it comes to how they like to work them. There will never be a shortage of exercises you can do to work this muscle (machines and free weights alike). However, in the world of free weights, there are really two pieces of equipment that dominate people’s arm routines — the barbell and the EZ bar.

 Everyone has an opinion when it comes to what the more effective bar is, but the truth is, there is no definitive answer. Here’s why.

The barbell is a great choice for working your biceps, no doubt about it. When using the barbell, you are forced to take a completely supinated (palms facing up) position, making full use of the exercise. There have been studies showing that you actually do activate more of the bicep muscle when using barbells during the concentric motion of the exercise, as opposed to EZ bars.

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Barbells do have their drawbacks, though. Due to the nature of the curl, it can be tough on people’s wrists. And that can cause problems. If you’re more focused on the uncomfortable feeling in your wrist, rather than the exercise, you can imagine that you’re probably not making the most of it.

Enter: the EZ bar. This bar has a few angled grips to it, which allow you to use a more natural feeling grip when in use. This will allow lifters to curl, and minimize the wrist pain some may have felt using a barbell.

The only caveat is how it would appear that the EZ bar works your biceps slightly less directly. However, there’s one thing to take into consideration.

Let’s say you can only comfortably curl 40 pounds on a barbell, due to wrist pain beyond anything heavier. But, on an EZ bar, you can curl 65 pounds, with good form, and you aren’t wincing from your wrists at all.

When it comes down to it, what’s really more effective?

These are just a few things to consider when you work biceps next. If you could, changing every so often from a barbell to an EZ bar, and vice-versa, might be a good idea. Changing things up in your routine is the key to continued results!

And, as always, keep posted to for more articles on nutrition, workouts and positive lifestyle changes to help you reach your fullest potential!

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