EZ bars are commonly found in gyms all over the world.
Gone are the days when they were looked at as a gimmick or a fad training method – EZ bars are now very popular for beginner and experienced gym-goers alike.
But are EZ bars actually worth it?
Do they impact your training in a truly beneficial way?
Well, in this article, we answer the question of whether EZ bars are worth it or not by looking at things like their benefits, the exercises you can do with them, how they compare to standard barbells, and other information that can help you decide if one is right for you.
What Exercises Can You Do With EZ Bars?
An EZ bar is an extremely versatile piece of gym equipment.
It can be used for a wide range of exercises covering multiple muscle groups.
They’re commonly used for arm exercises such as bicep curls, preacher curls, skull crushers, and overhead tricep extensions.
However, an EZ bar can also be used for bench press, bent-over rows, and even deadlifts too.
It’s worth bearing in mind that EZ bars won’t be able to hold as much weight as a standard barbell, so they might not be as suitable for heavy exercises such as deadlifts.
That being said, if you’re doing light deadlifts and an EZ bar is available, it can certainly be useful in your training.
Benefits of EZ Bars
Protection For Your Elbows And Wrists
The curves of an EZ bar do a great job of reducing the stress placed on your elbows and wrists during curling exercises.
When using a straight barbell, your joints (elbows and wrists) are placed in an unnatural and sometimes uncomfortable position at various points throughout the curling movement.
When using an EZ bar, your joints are offered greater protection which can go a long way in injury prevention.
Better Weight Balancing
When using a standard barbell for any exercise, a lot of effort is required to simply keep the weight stable and balanced.
Think about doing bicep curls with a barbell.
The barbell is long (maybe around 5 feet), and the weight is placed on either end of the bar.
This puts you in a position where a slight imbalance can result in one end of the bar tipping and pulling you out of position or even causing an injury.
As EZ bars are smaller. They provide a much more stable base for you to load weights onto.
This not only helps keep you stable when performing each exercise but also reduces the need for stabilizing muscles.
With fewer stabilizing muscles working, the target muscles have to work harder throughout the movement which can lead to greater gains in size and strength.
Better Suited To Some Exercises
Skull crushers spring to mind!
Standard barbells are long and heavy which makes them quite cumbersome for skull crushers (and other exercises).
As EZ bars are lighter, shorter, more comfortable to grip, and more stable, you can actually get some good muscle activation in the target areas.
Skull crushers can be an exercise that some people avoid as they feel uncomfortable lowering a weighted bar down towards their face.
As an EZ bar gives you a more comfortable grip and is a lighter bar, it can be a great way of incorporating this type of exercise into your program.
Are EZ Bars Better Than Barbells?
As with a lot of questions in fitness, the answer to this is both yes and no!
It’ll ultimately come down to what you’re trying to do, your preferences, and your fitness goals.
For example, when it comes to a lot of tricep exercises, an EZ bar can increase tricep activation quite considerably compared to standard barbells.
However, when it comes to bicep exercises, it’s somewhat disputed as to whether EZ bars or standard barbells are superior.
Some people find EZ bar curls more comfortable and better suited to their bodies.
That doesn’t mean everybody does though, and some people will definitely benefit more from a standard barbell.
Are EZ Bars Safer Than Barbells?
As a general rule, EZ bars are considered safer than barbells due to the reduction in stress placed on your elbows and wrists during exercises.
That doesn’t mean barbells are unsafe though.
It simply means that EZ bars have evolved to meet the needs of gym-goers.
With injury reduction a key factor for many people, EZ bars take this into account.
Are EZ Bars Worth It If You Already Have A Barbell?
Maybe, but that depends on why you would want to add one into your workouts.
If we just stick with arm exercises for this one – if you can do all the exercises you need to for an effective arm workout with a barbell without feeling any pain or discomfort, then an EZ bar probably isn’t necessary.
If you have elbow or wrist issues or feel unstable using a barbell, then an EZ bar could be a great addition to your workouts.
Is It Worth Getting A Second-Hand EZ Bar?
Although brand new EZ bars aren’t particularly expensive when compared to other gym equipment, getting a second-hand EZ bar could save you some money.
Many of us have a limited budget when it comes to gym kit. That’s why second-hand stuff could work out very well.
That being said, you need to be careful that any second-hand gear has been properly looked after and maintained.
With second-hand EZ bars, you’ll probably want to avoid any that show signs of rust, damage, or don’t come with weight collars.
Best Places To Buy EZ Bars
As with most things, you can buy EZ bars on Amazon.
Prices vary but for around $100, you’ll likely find one that suits your needs and budget.
As Amazon is such a well-known company and is usually pretty reliable when it comes to resolving any issues, you can be pretty confident shopping for fitness gear like EZ bar curls.
For $129.99, you can get a brand new EZ bar with a five-star rating from over 70 customers from Bells Of Steel.
You’ll need to buy collars separately though but these can be added to your order for $17.99.
For a more budget-friendly EZ bar, Gear For Fit offer one for $69.99.
This has only a small number of reviews but all appear to be very positive and validate the great value for money.
Again, the collars aren’t included but these can be added for $15.99.
I’ve been in the fitness and strength training industry for nearly a decade. In that time, I’ve gained 30 pounds of muscle, written hundreds of articles, and reviewed dozens of fitness supplements. As for my educational background, I’m a currently studying for my Active IQ Level 3 Diploma in Personal Training.