Are Crossfit Weights (Bumper Plates) Lighter?

bumper plates

Bumper plates have a variety of bad reasons to adore them. They're soft, bouncy, and don't have a rusty scent. Because they take up so much space, they give the impression that you're pulling heavyweights. If you're a fan of bent barbells, you can even bash them down. 

After training with steel plates, you set new personal records every time you deadlift with these plates. You can also use them to perform squats exercises. As much as I'd like to be the one to break the bad news to you, deadlifting with bumper plates is far easier than deadlifting with iron plates.

There is no reason to fear that your hard-earned PR has been squandered. It simply indicates that you have added a new factor to consider when assessing your overall strength. You still lifted weight when you set a new personal record in the deadlift with bumper plates. 

Is it possible that conditions were different from when you set a new personal record? Is it true that you've gotten stronger? Alternatively, was it because of your equipment that you could perform at a higher level? The real answer is likely to be a combination of the following factors. Let's look at whether or not CrossFit weights are lighter than they used to be.

What Exactly are Crossfit Weights (Bumper Plates)?

bumper plates
bumper plates

This thick rubber or urethane coating surrounds steel plates used as bumpers. Weightlifters and CrossFitters, who routinely do actions like clean and jerks, snatches, and overhead squats while dropping the bar from overhead, are the most common users.

When a bumper plate is dropped, it bounces, protecting the barbell and the floor. Because of this, they're a terrific choice for home workouts. If you repeatedly drop weights on the floor or the floor isn't robust enough, any weight can cause damage.

A durometer scale, sometimes known as a shore scale, is used to assess the bounciness of bumper plates. It's a tool for comparing the sturdiness of various substances. It means that greater durometer scores result in less bounce, whereas lower durometer scores result in more. There are four distinct types of bumper plates:

  • Standard Bumper Plates
  • Competition Bumper Plates
  • Crumb Bumper Plates
  • Technique Bumper Plates

Are Crossfit Weights (Bumper Plates) Lighter?

Steel or iron plates are not lighter than bumper plates made of steel or iron. As long as the weights are equal, the two plates will be the same size when measured.

However, a bumper plate is larger than an iron plate. Rubber covers a thick, dense steel or iron core in bumper weights. Iron plates appear less voluptuous because of this. In any case, the plates' weight is unaffected by this.

Athletes have an advantage when lifting bumper plates because of a few peculiarities. It gives the impression that CrossFit weights are lighter than steel or iron plates of the same weight. Because of this, Crossfit weights (bumper plates) are not lighter. It all comes down to perspective.

Can you Lift Crossfit Weights with more Ease?

Weight plates made of steel or iron are much more difficult to lift than bumper plates. Bumper plates are preferred to iron plates because they are encased in a thick rubber sheath. When the plates are dropped, this works as a layer of insulation and absorbs the impact.

When you're deadlifting, you don't have to worry about hurting the floor when you drop the bumper plates. The rubber coating that acts as a buffer between the plates when they are struck provides insulation against the impact. You can also achieve Noise-free workouts by using bumper plates.

There is much more bending of the bars when you have thick bumpers. They are more forgiving. They are most effective when used with deadlift bars. Deadlifts can be done more easily with bumper plates because of the whippiness.

Why do Crossfit Weights Feel Lighter when you Lift Them?

crossfit weights
crossfit weights

In contrast to steel or iron plates, bumper plates have a comparatively light structure. It's not the weight of the bumper plate that has anything to do with this. The additional rubber layer is responsible for the structure's bulk. In terms of weight, rubber insulation increases volume; it has no effect.

The bending makes it easier to lift, as previously indicated. Weight plates on both ends of the bar cause the bar to flex. When the weight plates are placed away from the center, a force acts on that location.

Athletes can get more momentum in one of two methods. Force exerted and weight's distance from the axis or center are both factors that contribute to torque. As a result, one can either move the weight plates away from the center of gravity or add heavier plates in their stead. The more you move the plates, the more momentum they will generate.

The thickness of the bumper plates on a bar increases the force exerted farther away from the axis, i.e., your hand, when they are piled one on top of the other. Increased torque results from this.

The more force applied, the greater the amount of deflection the bar will experience. Because of the bar's deflection, you can achieve the maximum point while doing the same weight but in a shorter amount of time using bumper weights.

Athletes put forth less mechanical effort when their bumper plates are closer to the ground. As a result, the weight of the bumper plates is reduced.


It's best to utilize bumper plates in home gyms because of their shock-absorbing properties and the fact that they're less likely to damage the floor if you accidentally drop your weights on the floor. Bumper plates come in various shapes and sizes, but for most lifters, regular training bumper plates are more than adequate.

Because bumper plates feel lighter when elevated, there are scientific reasons. In addition to being quieter and cushioning shock, Bumper plates also make lifting a little easier. As a result, bumper plates can be used by weightlifters of all levels, from novices to those who compete.