I started CrossFit in 2005. Back then, there were terrible options for building an amazing garage gym- and even poor options for outfitting a commercial gym. But I always ran across veneration for Eleiko barbells. And most olympic weightlifting gyms had at least a few Eleiko bumper plates- or as Eleiko calls them, "discs."
I recall talking with National Champion and even Olympian weightlifters and they all wanted Eleiko bars and bumper plates.
But the cost! Just a barbell alone could be over $1000!
And the bumper plates (I mean discs, Eleiko calls their bumper plates discs) were expensive as well.
Of course, this begs the question- "Why are Eleiko bumper plates so expensive?" And do *I* need such expensive bumper plates?
This is hardly a recent concern- user JPC on the Sherdog forums was waxing poetic and pondering this question way back in 2008
He didn't think he needed to go Eleiko.
Let's dive into why they are so expensive.
The IWF is the International Weightlifting Federation. They publish standards for competition at the highest levels of weightlifting- up to weightlifting at the Olympics!
Eleiko has been a supporter of IWF, the sport of weightlifting, and the sport of powerlifting for decades. This means that many of the things we take for granted in barbell plates, sport, and competition were innovated, popularized, or otherwise supported by Eleiko.
And of course, that support is not cheap.
IWF charges hefty licensing fees to their partners, and even if your Eleiko bar and bumper plates are not IWF certified (not all are), it is still built to IWF standards.
As mentioned above, Eleiko has been around for decades. In fact, when Eleiko started making barbells in 1957, it had already been around for 30+ years as a company that made waffle irons (really!)
It's great to know that your barbell company has been around for decades, but that can also bring with it some branding and reputation that you might not be able to "feel in the steel."
Ah, the famous Swedish manufacturing. Eleiko barbells and.... Volvos? And...?
I kid, I kid.
I actually googled Swedish manufacturing to write this blog post and I was pleasantly surprised to see the breadth and perceived quality of Swedish products.
However, nothing I googled said that the products were... cheap. Inexpensive. Reasonably priced.
Eleiko prides itself on utilizing Swedish manufacturing and Swedish raw materials. And of course they make their barbells and bumper plates to high tolerances.
All this costs more than manufacturing in other areas of the world.
First, let's check in BraveryDave with Reddit:
If you answer yes to all the above- BUY ELEIKO PLATES
But if you answered no to ANY of the above- then no! You don't need Eleiko plates. I know Olympians and National Champion weightlifters who don't train on Eleiko plates.
Eleiko plates (GASP) weigh and perform the same as much cheaper bumper plates (competition bumper plates here).
In fact, Fringe Sport training bumper plates are the most durable, longest warrantied bumper plates in the WORLD. Seriously, did you see us throw them off our roof?
While I hesitate to call Fringe Sport bumper plates cheap- you can find our full selection of reasonably priced, outrageously durable, amazingly colorful bumper plates here.
And remember, everything we sell is backed by our world-famous customer support and never-matched return policy. Great products make it easy to say- we only sell what we lift on!
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below. :)