The 7 Best Weight Plates of 2021

Complete your home gym with this essential item

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When outfitting a strength-training set-up from scratch, you may discover that you need a set of weight plates—or a few sets of weight plates. Weight plates are the small but heavy discs that rest on the ends of a barbell, giving it the weight it needs to give you a good workout.

Because weight plates and barbells are often sold separately, it’s not enough to buy one and assume you’ll be good to go. You’ll have to buy both individually. (While this might seem like a hassle, remember that it gives you the freedom to switch up your weight plates over time—without having to buy a new barbell every time you do).

Read on to learn more about weight plates—and to see what set might be right for you.

Here are the best weight plates on the market.

Our Top Picks
These weight plates are crafted from solid cast iron and finished with a protective coating for long-term use and durability.
The budget-friendly singles can be mixed and matched and used with the barbells you already own.
Ideal for beginners due to its affordability and plates of varying weights, the set includes everything you need to start lifting.
Crafted from a combination of high-density rubber and stainless steel, these plates manage to be both durable and floor-friendly.
Olympic plates that won't rough up your floors, the rubber coating makes them particularly easy to grip.
A solid option for anyone looking for a diverse weight range, it works for beginners who want to slowly increase the intensity.
Perfect if you don't have a lot of space to spare, the set includes two dumbbell bars, a connector, and several weight plates.

Best Overall: CAP Barbell 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plate

CAP Barbell 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plate
Pros
  • Durable—made of cast iron with a protective enamel coating

  • Big weight range

  • Easy to grip

  • Available in singles, pairs, and sets

Cons
  • The cast iron material can damage floors if you're not careful

If you’re looking for a set of classic weight plates, you can’t go wrong with CAP Barbell’s 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plates. The weight plates range from 2.5 to 45 pounds apiece. And since they’re available as singles, pairs, and sets, you can easily find and stock up on exactly what you need.

The weight plates are crafted from solid cast iron and finished with a protective enamel coating, so you can rest assured knowing they’ll be durable and long-lasting. What’s nice? The plates are designed with holes that make them easy to grip. Even better: These holes get bigger as you work your way toward the higher end of the weight range, helping your grip as the plates become particularly hard to carry.

Weight Range: 2.5 to 45 pounds | Diameter: 2 inches | Material: Cast iron | Sold: Individually, in pairs, and in sets of four

Best Budget: Sporzon! Cast Iron 1-Inch Grip Plate

Sporzon! Cast Iron 1-Inch Grip Plate
Pros
  • Durable—made of cast iron

  • Big weight range

  • Easy to grip

  • Available in two diameters

Cons
  • The cast iron material can damage floors if you're not careful

Sporzon!’s Cast Iron Grip Plates offer a budget-friendly way to stock up on weight plates. Since the weight plates are sold exclusively as singles, you can mix and match until you have a set that precisely meets your needs.

The plates come in weights ranging from 2.5 to 45 pounds apiece. And since they’re available in 1-inch or 2-inch diameters, you can easily match them to any barbell you already own. The plates are crafted from solid cast iron and finished with a baked enamel coating that promises to cut down on rust and corrosion. And since they're lined with large holes, you should be able to grip them with ease—even after you’ve worked up a sweat.

Weight Range: 2.5 to 45 pounds | Diameter: 1 or 2 inches | Material: Cast iron | Sold: Individually

Best Starter Set: Step Fitness Club Quality 4-Weight Deluxe Barbell Set

Step Fitness Club Quality 4-Weight Deluxe Barbell Set

The weight plates are crafted from recycled materials and encased in hard plastic shells. This may make them a little less durable than some of the solid cast iron options on offer. But the upside is: They’ll be a little easier on your floors—and a lot easier on your wallet.

Pros
  • All-in-one set

  • Beginner-friendly

  • Floor-friendly

  • Weight plates are crafted from recycled materials

Cons
  • Relatively low total weight

  • May be less durable than other options

Club Quality’s Deluxe Barbell Set will give you everything you need to start lifting. The set ships with nine pieces: eight weight plates and a barbell. The plates range from 2.75 to 11 pounds apiece, giving you a total of 60 pounds to work with (when combined with the weight of the bar).

The weight plates are crafted from recycled materials and encased in hard plastic shells. This may make them a little less durable than some of the solid cast iron options on offer. But the upside is: They’ll be a little easier on your floors—and a lot easier on your wallet.

Weight Range: 2.75 to 11 pounds (60 pounds total) | Diameter: 1-inch | Material: Plastic-coated recycled material | Sold: Set of 8 (plus a bar)

Best Bumper Plate: Everyday Essentials Olympic Bumper Plate

Everyday Essentials Color Coded Olympic Bumper Plate
Pros
  • Durable—made of a hybrid of high-density rubber and stainless steel

  • Floor-friendly

Cons
  • 10-pound plates may bend or break if used alone

The Everyday Essentials Olympic Bumper Plate is a classic bumper plate that will help you protect your floors during even your toughest workouts. Crafted from a combination of high-density rubber and stainless steel, the plates manage to be both durable and floor-friendly.

The plates range from 10 to 55 pounds apiece. And since they’re sold individually, you can stock up on the options that best meet your needs. The grippy rubber makes the weight plates generally easy to hold and use. But the design does come with one downside: The 10-pound weights are too thin to be used on their own. They need to be paired with other weights—otherwise, they might bend under the weight of your barbell. 

Weight Range: 10 to 55 pounds | Diameter: 2 inches | Material: Rubber | Sold: Individually

Best Olympic Plates: XMark Fitness Olympic Plates

XMark Fitness Olympic Plates
Pros
  • Durable—crafted from sturdy steel and finished with a rubber coating

  • Big weight range

  • Easy to grip

  • Available in pairs and sets

  • Floor-friendly

Cons
  • Beginner-friendly weights are only available in sets


XMark’s Olympic Plates are durable Olympic plates that won’t go too hard on your floors. The weight plates range from 2.5 to 45 pounds apiece. And since they’re sold in pairs and sets, you can choose a total set weight between 70 to 275 pounds. (Unfortunately, if you want to stock up on the beginner-friendly 2.5-pound weights, you’ll have to spring for a set that weighs at least 115 total pounds).

The weights are crafted from sturdy steel and finished with a floor-friendly rubber coating. This rubber coating makes the weights particularly easy to grip, and they’re lined with large holes that make them even easier to hold and handle.

Weight Range: 2.5 to 45 pounds (70 to 275 pounds total, depending on the set) | Diameter: 2 inches | Material: Rubber-coated steel | Sold: In pairs and sets (of 12 to 16)

Best Fractional Plates: Trademark Innovations Fractional Weight Plates

Trademark Innovations Fractional Weight Plates
Pros
  • Durable

  • Beginner-friendly

  • Great for microloading

Cons
  • Extremely light weight range

The Trademark Innovations Fractional Weight Plates set is an excellent option for anyone looking for a more nuanced weight range. The fractional weight plate set comes with eight weight plates, which range from 0.25 to 1 pound apiece. This lightweight range is great for first-time weightlifters—and for those who gradually want to increase the intensity of their workouts over time.

Despite their small size, the weight plates promise to be durable. They’re crafted from solid steel. And for good measure, they’re color-coded, so you’ll never mix them up. Combine the fractional plates with another weight plate set, or use them on their own. Either way, they’ll help you level up your workouts on your terms.

Weight Range: 0.25 to 1 pound (5 pounds total) | Diameter: 2 inches | Material: Steel | Sold: Set of 8

Best for Small Spaces: Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells

Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells
Pros
  • All-in-one set

  • Adjustable

  • Beginner-friendly

  • Small space-friendly

Cons
  • Cast iron material can damage floors if you're not careful

  • Limited weight range

  • Lots of pieces

Weightlifting in a small space can be tough. Barbells can get really long, and weight plates can get bulky—but Yes4All’s Adjustable Dumbbells set offers a clever solution to both of those problems. The set ships with two dumbbell bars, a connector, and several weight plates. Put the plates on the dumbbell bars to create two weighted dumbbells, and combine them with the connector to create a weighted barbell. Voila, you’ve got a solid weightlifting set-up—and it won’t demand much storage space between your workouts!

The set is available in five different weights, which range from 40 to 190 total pounds. To keep things space-efficient, the weights max out at 10 pounds apiece. So a heavier set will mean more pieces to keep track of—but on the whole, you’ll still be cutting down on bulk.

Weight Range: 3 to 10 pounds (40 to 190 pounds total, depending on the set) | Diameter: 1 inch | Material: Cast iron | Sold: In sets (of 8 to 20)

Final Verdict

Looking to stock up on weight plates? CAP Barbell’s 2-Inch Olympic Grip Plates (view on Amazon) offer a great place to start. The durable plates are crafted from solid cast iron, and they’re lined with holes that make them easy to grip and handle. The plates are available as singles, pairs, and sets, and in weights ranging from 2.5 to 45 pounds apiece. This makes it easy to stock up on exactly what you need—nothing more, nothing less.

If you’d prefer a slightly budget-friendlier option, Sporzon!’s Cast Iron Grip Plates (view on Amazon) is another great choice. The plates are durable and easy to grip. And since they’re available in two different diameters, you can easily match the weight plates to your barbell (if you already own one).

What to Look for in Weight Plates


Weight Range

Weight plates are designed with weight lifting in mind, so weight is obviously a key consideration. Look for plates that are as lightweight or as heavy as you want them to be. And remember that you won’t just be lifting the weight plates—you’ll be lifting them alongside a barbell. So consider the weight of your barbell as you stock up.

Diameter

If you’re planning to use your weight plates with a barbell, make sure the weight plates you’re stocking up on will actually fit on your barbell. Most barbells are either 1 or 2 inches in diameter, and most weight plates are designed with a 1- or 2-inch hole in their center. (So you’ll want to pair a 1-inch barbell with 1-inch weight plates, and a 2-inch barbell with 2-inch weight plates). It doesn’t matter whether you buy your barbell or your weight plates first—just make sure they can fit together.

Material

Most weight plates are crafted from cast iron. But some are made entirely of rubber, and others are made of rubber-coated cast iron. None of these options is necessarily “better” or “worse” than the other. Rubber weight plates may be floor-friendlier and easier to grip, whereas cast iron weight plates may be more durable.

Set Size

Weight plates can be sold individually, in pairs, or sets (of four and up). You can mix and match these options to curate a set that meets your needs. Just be sure you know what set size you’re buying before you buy it. (It’s pretty disappointing to receive one weight plate when you were expecting two—and it’s also a hassle to receive two pairs when you thought you were buying two singles.)

FAQs

What exercises can you perform with weight plates?

When paired with a barbell, you can use weight plates to do deadlifts, squats, presses, and more. You can also use your weight plates on their own—holding them like you’d hold any other free weight. You can use them for rows, squats, presses, and more. 


How accurate is the weight of weight plates?

Most of the time, the weight listed on your weight plates should be pretty accurate. You can expect a standard deviation of about 5 percent—meaning a 20-pound weight plate should be between 19 and 21 pounds, a 50-pound weight plate should be between 47.5 and 52.5 pounds, and so on.

Why Trust Verywell Fit? 

As a seasoned health and fitness writer, Lindsey Lanquist understands how vital quality product recommendations can be. She is careful to recommend products that are reliable, comfortable, and genuinely well-reviewed by those who’ve tried them.

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