EZ curl bars are specialty barbells used for targeting the bicep and tricep muscles. They are quite short and can be loaded with plates of your choice. They are basically meant to be used instead of dumbbells because they offer more stability and versatility. Plus, EZ curl bars are quite gentle on wrists, so if you are working on your arm muscles, they can protect your wrists from getting strained.
The main problem with these specialty bars is that they have a short length and can’t be placed on a squat rack. You will have to pick them up from the floor and place them back there on it when done. This could be very challenging because at times you may lose your balance while doing benching work. Plus, loading and unloading plates becomes difficult too. That’s why rackable EZ curl bars were invented.
There are not too many rackable curl bars to choose from but I have selected some of the top-rated ones for you. In this article, I will be sharing my recommendations with you as well as answering some FAQs. For using a curl bar, you would need to have a flat bench or an adjustable workout bench. If you don’t already have a half rack or a squat rack, you can check out my recommendations.
In a hurry? Here are our top picks!
#1 - Rogue Rackable Curl Bar
What we think
It is the rackable version of Rogue’s original curl bar, which is one of its top-rated products. The total length of the bar is 74.75″ with a 51.8″ gap between the sleeves. The steel used for the Rogue Rackable curl bar has a tensile strength of 110,000 PSI, which is decent enough for a curl bar because you anyway won’t be loading it with heavy weights. The shaft diameter is 28.5MM, making it compatible with most standard bumper plates and even competition bumper plates.
The Rogue rackable curl bar has bronze bushings. I had expected bearings because it’s an expensive product but after thoroughly evaluating other competitive products, I realized that most curl bars come with bushings and they do last for a really good time. Bearings are used for standard barbells that are used for lifting a lot of weight.
The knurl pattern used on this bar is the same that Rogue has used in its top-selling Ohip bar. The knurl marks are on a passive side and that’s the only scope of improvement I could find. But, as I always say, knurling is a subjective thing.
- Comes with 5 year warranty
- Available in cerakote finish in case you want that
- Has an e-coating on the shaft to prevent rusting
- Made of high-quality steel to let you train heavier than what you can with the affordable curl bars
- Weighs 35bs, which is much more than what other competitive products weigh
- Knurling is medium and may not be enough for people who like aggressive knurl pattern
High-end ergonomically designed rackable curl bar for people who do not mind spending more on a product that could last for a lifetime.
We are giving this a rating of 4.8 out of 5.0.
#2 - REP Fitness rackable curl bar
What we think
REP Fitness is one of the most trusted brands for buying high-quality home gym equipment. The quality of its products are so good that REP is often considered as the closest Rogue Fitness alternative. So, if you are looking for an EZ curl bar and do not want to go with Rogue, the REP Fitness rackable curl bar should meet your expectations.
It has a total length of 74” with a 51” gap between the sleeves. The loadable sleeves are 10” long and have a 2” diameter, making the bar compatible with the REP Fitness bumper plates as well as Olympic bumper plates from all popular brands. The knurl bars are medium aggressive and have managed to impress most of the buyers.
You can choose chrome or stainless steel depending on your budget. The stainless steel one is significantly expensive though but worth its money because of higher durability and better resistance to rusting. The stainless steel curl bar therefore, comes with a lifetime warranty whereas the chrome one has a 5-year warranty.
REP Fitness rackable curl bars are made of highest-grade steel used in the industry for curl bars. The chrome one has a tensile strength of 190,000 PSI and the stainless steel one has 200,000 PSI. These are the bars that you can trust for hardcore training.
There is nothing that I dislike about this EZ curl bar but a few buyers have stated that they want REP Fitness to knurl the bar from end to end just the way Rogue and other closest competitors have done. REP curl bars only have knurl marks at selected places, those spots where people frequently hold the barbell. But, some people just love to experiment, so REP should give them enough flexibility. See the below image for reference.
- Made of high-quality steel
- Can be trusted for heavy lifting
- Near-perfect knurl marks to suit almost everyone’s liking
- Has needle plus bearing rotation system for a smoother rotation
- Available in chrome and stainless steel
- Lifetime warranty on the stainless steel bar
- None as such but knurl marks should have been throughout the bar
High-end curl bar for heavy and serious training session
We are giving this a rating of 4.8 out of 5.0.
#3 - Titan Fitness Rackable Ez Curl Bar
What we think
It is one of the most affordable rackable curl bars but, don’t underestimate it. The Titan Fitness rackable EZ curl bar is made of 110,000 tensile strength steel and can hold up to 500lbs of weight, as per the manufacturer. I doubt it though and wouldn’t recommend this bar to anyone who plans to train with more than 200lbs. Now, 200lbs may sound like an insignificant weight for squats but it is more than enough for curls and other bicep and tricep exercises.
Being rackable, the Titan Fitness EZ curl bar has a total length of 71” with 9.25” loadable sleeves and a weight of 31 lbs. The diameter of the sleeves is 50mm, making it compatible with all olympic plates, including bumper plates, cast iron plates, and fractional weight plates.
Talking about knurl marks; they have a diamond pattern and the depth is medium aggressive. Being chrome-plated, the Titan Fitness EZ curl bar isn’t as rust-proof as the Rogue Fitness rackable curl bar but it can still last for a good number of years provided you do not expose it to extreme weather conditions. You can buy a portable air conditioner to get rid of humidity.
There are two major issues that I could find; one is the poor packing as always and the second one is the shorter distance between the sleeves. It is just 49.25” whereas the Rogue curl bar has a 52” gap. The shorter gap makes racking difficult.
- Made of high-quality steel
- Knurl marks aren’t aggressive but deep enough to give you a good grip
- More than enough for intermediate and recreational trainers
- Comes with 1-year warranty
- The finish isn’t that great but acceptable considering its low price
- Shipping and packaging must be improved
- The gap between the sleeves should be increased for easier racking
Affordable rackable curl bar for beginner to intermediate level trainers who are on a budget
We are giving this a rating of 4.5 out of 5.0.
#4 - XMark Convict 6' Rackable Olympic Curl Bar
What we think
This is one of the best rackable curl bars available under $100. I recommend it for beginners and intermediate level trainers. The manufacturer claims that it can hold up to 400lbs, but I wouldn’t use it if I am going to train with more than 250lbs. That’s because it uses brass bushings, which may not provide a smooth rotation to the sleeves. If you are lifting heavy weights, you must invest in barbells that spin so smoothly that you hardly feel the sleeves’ rotation.
The Xmark rackable bar weighs 33lbs and has a 6’ length, which are a pretty standard feature of affordable rackable EZ curl bars. The shaft has 28mm diameter but the sleeves do not adhere to Olympic size. They are less than 50mm in diameter, so make sure you secure the plates with a collar to prevent an accident. This isn’t a major issue though because you anyways should always use barbell collars.
The knurling on the Xmark rackable curl bar is slightly aggressive and a lot of buyers actually liked that. It feels a bit gritty, so if you need rather passive knurling, this may not be the right bar. The coating and polishing isn’t good and that’s OK because it is a low-cost product. One thing that you should note here is that the coating is not rust-proof. If you leave it in your basement or any place where humidity level is high, it could rust, which is again a fairly common issue with all low-cost metal products.
- 400lbs weight bearing capacity
- Decent knurl marks to give you a good grip even with sweaty hands
- The sleeves are less than 50mm in diameter, so the plates slide off easily and need a collar
- Not rust-proof
One the most affordable rackable curl bar so do not expect too much from it
We are giving this a rating of 4.4 out of 5.0.
#5 - Bells of Steel Rackable EZ Curl Bar
What we think
The black and gold combination of the Bells of Steel rackable ez curl bar can steal your heart instantly. I don’t know how long the Titanium coating on the sleeves will last but it looks pretty impressive and rich. The coating seems pretty thick, so if you load/unload the plates with care, it could retain its rich look for at least a few years. The shaft has matt cerakote coating, which helps make the bar highly resistant to rust and wear and tear.
Talking about the build quality; Bells of Steel rackable curl bar is made of good quality steel with a tensile strength of 100,000 PSI. The bar weighs 33lbs and the manufacturer claims that it can handle 700lbs of weight but I wouldn’t go anything beyond 300lbs on this. The knurl marks are medium aggressive, so make sure you are comfortable with that. The length, shaft diameter, and the diameter of the sleeves are pretty standard, which makes it easier to use on racks and half racks from all popular brands.
Bells of Steel rackable curl bar comes with limited lifetime warranty. The only thing I wish to change is its pricing. It is expensive for what it is. And, I think the price is higher due to the Titanium coating. I wouldn’t pay $50 more for that golden look but I know many people would.
- Sleeves are ribbed to help secure the plates
- Sleeves have a Titanium gold coating
- Cerakote finish helps prevent rusting
- Can be used by intermediate to advanced trainers
- Expensive for what it is
Expensive but beautiful looking curl bar for advanced training sessions
We are giving this a rating of 4.3 out of 5.0.
Buying Guide and Frequently Asked Questions
Benefits of EZ curl bar over a straight bar
These angled zig-zag style bars are easier on your wrists and shoulders
Straight bars are great for squats but they do not provide a neutral grip. When used regularly, they might strain your wrists. Plus, if you already have wrist injury, using them could aggravate your condition. That's when you need specialty barbells such as trap bars and ez curl bars.
Trap bars help keep your spine neutral for numerous strength training workouts such as squats, farmer walk, etc. The EZ curl bar helps keep your wrist in an almost-neutral position during bicep and tricep exercises. The angled grips help prevent external rotation, which is a major cause of wrist strain and injury.
EZ curl bars provide a better balance
Olympic barbells are 7’ long. Some may be 7.2’ long. They are not quite comfortable for curling exercises. Plus, you need to do a lot of work to make them stay balanced, especially when you do close grip exercises.
Ez curl bars are just 4’ long. They are much easier and safer to use for skull crushers and other bicep and tricep exercises. No matter how wide or narrow your grip is, you won’t face balancing problems. Rackable ones are usually 6’ long but they are meant to be used with a squat rack so you don't have to worry about balance and safety.
They help isolate and engage more arm muscles
There are multiple spots and angles where you can hold the bar. Each of them help you target a specific muscle group in a specific way. If you want to work on your arm muscles, ez bars can provide you better and faster results than straight bars.
What exercises can you do with a rackable EZ curl bar?
The above video should help you. Basically, you can do all arm-related workouts and almost all barbell exercises using a rackable curl bar. But, due to its shorter length, they may not be quite comfortable for squats, lunges, etc.
Most of us have really small home gyms built in a part of the basement or garage. That’s why we prefer compact yet versatile equipment that can be used for various purposes. EZ curl bar is not one of them. It is specifically meant for bicep and tricep exercises. You can use the rackable ones for deadlifts and a few other exercises but they can’t replace a standard barbell.
That’s why I recommend rackable curl bars only for people who are quite serious about getting big arms. Otherwise, adjustable dumbbells should be fine. They are much more versatile and do not require plates.
That’s it for this article on the best rackable curl bars. If you have any queries or suggestions, please email me or leave a comment. I will be happy to hear from you!