Bumper Plate Guide
Bumper plates have grown in popularity over the last decade due to their durability and the rise of barbell focused sports such as CrossFit. We’ve put together a guide on the advantages of bumper plates and the differences in our range to help you pick which bumper plate is right for you!
Bumper Plates vs Iron Weight Plates
One of the biggest differences between bumper plates and traditional iron weight plates is the sound difference when lifting! Rubber acts as a sound dampener, so you when the weight plates touches the floor, the rubber will absorb part of the impact which will dampen the sound. Rubber flooring with dampen the sound further as the impact will be rubber on rubber.
Iron weights can come in different shapes and sizes (from circular to hexagonal) meaning you could not use these odd sizes for standardised Olympic lifts. All of our bumper plates are 45cm, making them ideal for all Olympic lifts! As the majority of the plates are 45cm, this spreads the weight on the flooring, helping protect your floor!
Iron weights are not suitable for hi-impact barbell exercises, but are suitable for plate loaded machines and exercises where there is low impact (bench press and overhead press). Bumper plates are suitable for all barbell exercises and can be used on plate loaded machines. Want to curl on the EZ bar with bumpers? No problem!
Durability & protection
The rubber coating on bumper plates adds a layer of protection when performing hi-impact exercises and different types of rubber add a different level of bounce. This added bounce not only protects the bumper plate, but helps protect your flooring. Traditional iron weights will damage your flooring over time, even if you use heavy duty commercial grade rubber flooring.
Differences in rubber?
Virgin rubber is a denser rubber than offers less bounce, virgin rubber is designed to survive the testing environment of a commercial gym and is very wear-resistant. Our Wolverson Predator Bumper Plates are vulcanised, giving them extra reinforcement and adding durability.
This rubber is made from small ‘crumb’ pieces of recycled rubber, giving it a slightly different texture to virgin rubber. The recycled pieces of crumb rubber are bound together under heat and pressure. Our Bison Hi-Impact Bumper Plates are made from a mix of crumb rubber and virgin rubber, these bumpers have a bigger bounce compared to our other bumper plates, while our Wolverson Hybrid Bumper Plates are made from 100% vulcanised recycled crumb rubber. These types of bumper plates produce a slight rubber odour when brand new, but this smell will disappear over time. As an added bonus, as this rubber is recycled, it’s more environmentally friendly!
Bumper plate maintenance
Bumper plates are really easy to clean! We recommend using warm soapy water and a soft brush.
1. Lather the bumper plate in soapy, warm water and use a soft brush to clean the entire plate
2. Rinse well and ensure all the soap has been removed, paying particular attention to the steel hub
3. Dry well with a towel
We recommend storying your bumper plates in a cool, dry place to extend the lifespan of the rubber. A storage system such as the Wolverson Toast Plate Rack can neatly organise your bumper plates in an effective way. If you need to move your bumper plates around the gym, the Wolverson Mobile Bumper Plate Stacker is what you need! The built in wheels let you effortlessly move your bumper plates around the gym, so you spend less time setting up and more time training.