How Much Does Bar Weigh on a Smith Machine?

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How much does a smith machine bar weigh? In fact, the Smith machine bar has no standard weight. The weight of the Smith machine bar can be more than 6 to 45 pounds. Now let’s analyze this problem together to explore how the weight of the Smith machine bar affects our exercise.

What is Smith Machine?

Smith machine is one of the most common resistance training equipment in gyms around the world. It consists of barbells fixed in the steel rail, which can only move vertically or nearly vertically. The blacksmith bar has two hooks, one on each side, which can lock the bar at a series of locking points. Smith machine is suitable for junior, intermediate and advanced weightlifters.

Smith machine is one of the most effective training equipment. Unlike Olympic barbells, Smith machines come in various shapes and sizes. But before we get to know the weight of the Smith machine bar in depth, let’s talk about the machine first, OK? Have you ever wondered why this multifunctional training equipment is called “Smith” machine, and how it came into being? In the 1950s, American fitness and nutrition expert Jack Laran invented the original model of Smith machine. In the 1950s, he installed a sliding device in the gym. Lalanne also designed the first leg stretcher, a skater with cables and a weight selector, which are now standard in the fitness industry.

What is the Initial Weight of Bar of Smith Machine?

Let’s make it clear. Smith barbell has no standard weight. It is not generally standardized to 45 pounds (20 kilograms) as barbells in the Olympic Games. Therefore, the starting weight of the Smith machine (only bars, excluding plates) will depend on the specific Smith machine you use. We can help you find out the weight of bar, the most popular Smith machine, and how you can easily measure the weight if the Smith machine you use is different from what we discussed here.

ProfessionalTips: many Smith machines attach bar weight labels on the side of the machine, so first check the surrounding of the machine. If not, check the Smith machine you are using online to see if the manufacturer lists the weight of the barbell. Many people have it.

Read More About Smith Machine:

Why Is It Important to Know the Weight of Bar of Smith Machine?

You may think, “but wait, is it necessary to know the weight of bar of Smith machine?”. We said yes. Sure. Then let’s quickly review why it’s important to know the weight of the Smith machine in case you’re ready to give up and get an accurate answer. Knowing the weight of the Smith machine you are using is as important as knowing the weight of ordinary barbells (most of us will remember) or dumbbells. If you want to gradually overload (percentage / increment the weight you lift every week / class), then you need to know how much you lift, including barbells.

In addition, knowing the actual weight of the rod is important to determine the starting weight of any given motion. For example, if you can do a 40 pound dumbbell shoulder press, knowing the weight of the Smith machine barbell will help you choose how much weight you need to add to the barbell. It’s actually that simple. If you like the accuracy of weight lifting, which is important for progress, then you should know how much weight you want to lift.

Should I Count the Weight of Bar of Smith Machine?

Yes, you must count. The weight of Smith machine bar is between 6-40 pounds. You need to know the weight of Smith machine bar to know exactly how much you want to lift.

Read More: Can You Do Deadlift On A Smith Machine?

Is the Smith Machine Bar Heavy?

Smith machine bar is definitely a real weight, but it should not be compared to a free weight barbell lift. Since the stability requirements of Smith machine do not work, the feeling of load will be different. That is, if you plan to use the Smith machine regularly, you will want to gain weight over time, so understanding the baseline you are improving is crucial to progress. Therefore, you are not comparing the weight of Smith machine and other equipment, but comparing the Smith machine elevator in the previous weeks.

In other words, you can decide how much to lift on the Smith machine according to how many similar exercises you can do with barbells or dumbbells. This number won’t be too far. Generally speaking, you can use Smith machine to do 10% more than dumbbells or free weight barbells. However, for the sake of safety, it is best to start with similar or even smaller weights, and then continue.

Smith Machine

How to Measure Bar of Smith Machine?

There are two different ways to measure the weight of bar of Smith machine with balance or rope and weight. I’ll start with the proportional method, because it’s easier. That’s what I did. In addition, before you start, it’s best to talk to the gym staff and let them know what you’re doing.

  • Option 1: Scale

First, you can find a box or solid object, which you can use to lift the rod from the safety stop at the bottom of the machine. Then put a balance on the top of the box and put the stick on it. The reading on the scale will indicate the weight of the bar.

If you don’t have a box, you can put the scale on the floor, step on the scale with a cross bar, and then record the weight. Then, without the crossbar, it is called the weight and subtracted from the first measurement.

When I did this test, the balance showed that the weight was 18 pounds. Because this is an old analog balance, I also weighed a dumbbell of 20 pounds, 30 pounds and 40 pounds to see if it has been calibrated. Each reading is approximately 2 pounds low. So this bar may actually weigh 20 pounds. According to the equipment supplier, the initial weight of reinforcement should be 25 pounds. Therefore, each machine is different, and wear may change the resistance of reinforcement over time. Of course, if you don’t have a scale, you must use option 2.

  • Option 2: Rope and weight

In order to measure the bar of Smith machine with this method, you need a string about 10 feet long and a series of 10, 5 and 2.5 pound plates. Tie one end of the rope in the middle of the rod, and then throw the other end onto the top cross bar of the machine. Now move the rod up to a hook on the top so that the loose end of the rope is on the floor. At this end, tie some counterweight plates. Next, untie the crossbar to see if it is balanced. You can add or remove weights until the rod is close to perfect balance. When balancing the bar, the weight tied to the rope is equal to the weight of the bar.

Compare the Smith Machine Bar with the Olympic Horizontal Bar

Remember, a typical 7-foot-high Olympic bar in the gym weighs 45 pounds, and many people start with this weight in most sports, or even more. The weight of the Olympic women’s weightlifting pole is 35 pounds or 33 pounds (15 kilograms). There are also lightweight Olympic bars. Some 5-foot or 6-foot poles are designed so that your starting weight is only 25 pounds, which is very helpful, because some women or children can’t start with a 45 pound pole pressed empty on the bench. The 10 pound aluminum training bar is designed for athletes training in clean and jerk or snatch, and even the 5-pound hollow steel bar is also used in group aerobic training courses and light fitness training. However, for weight training, as done on the Smith machine, 15 pounds is a reasonable starting weight.


In short, the weight of the Smith machine bar is usually between 6 and 45 pounds (2.7 to 40 kilograms). Sometimes, you will find that its average weight is 15 to 25 pounds (6.8 to 11 kilograms). Due to different starting weights, this type of Smith machine bar will be an ideal fitness equipment for different groups of people, even beginners.