If you are beginning to weight training, it can be a little confusing to select the right weight plates for your workout. There are so many sizes and types available on the market. These are also made of different materials.
The traditional plates are made of iron or steel. These are affordable but can be quite noisy. It is best to select calibrated weights over others for higher accuracy. Rubber or PU coated weights are used so they don’t damage the floor when dropped. The cheapest plates are made or iron or steel without coating. But these can corrode over time. There are plates that come with chrome finish that lasts longer than uncoated plates. While rubber coating can increase durability of plates, it can get scratched easily.
However, this is cost-effective. PU tends to last longer and therefore is more expensive. PU or polyurethane plates are hard wearing and can be found in many commercial gyms due to this. These have a metal inner frame that is layered in PU. These are hard plates so they are not recommended for repeated dripping exercises like you would do in barbell training. These are generally used for belt squat machines, smith machines, leg presses etc.
Technique plates are made of hollow plastic or plastic. You can find these in the same size as the Olympic size weights. But these are generally lighter so you can build your endurance and improve your lifting technique slowly. You will find these mostly used in crossfit training and also in rehabilitation exercises. You can also speak to your gym or the supplier about the weight plates or weight plate set that is most suited for you. You can also check the prices for these plates online from different suppliers to get an idea of what fits in your budget.
Make sure to look at reviews to get an idea of what previous customers think. Fractional plates are lighter and smaller. These can be found in the rubber bumper format and you can make small changes to the weight load when you use these plates. This allows you to refine your technique and slowly build up your strength.
The most common weight plates in athletic training facilities are rubber bumper plate. These are made of virgin rubber so they are usually slimmer and denser. There is a reinforced metal disc in the inner part of the weight plate. This is usually made out of tungsten or steel. This is what provides most of the weight. You can add these weights to a standard barbell sleeve end.
These can be used for powerlifting training and weightlifting. You need to look for brands that offer more accurate weight tolerances. There are coloured bumper plates that are used for professional level training. You can easily identify the weight plate due to the colour coded rubber moulding. These make it a practical addition to any gym. There are also black rubber bumper plates that come with a bevelled colour strip at the outer edge to distinguish the weight.