Best Push-Up Handles and Bars
Anyone can get down on their hands and knees and perform some push-ups without any help from additional devices. So, with that said, why would you go out of your way to learn how to buy a product that you technically do not need? Think of it this way, if you were doing some carpentry, would you rather use manual or electric tools? Sure, most carpentry tasks can be achieved with the use of hammers, nails, and screwdrivers but wouldn’t they be much easier with screw guns, drills, and brad nailers? The same concept applies here as using a high-quality pair of push-up handles is going to relieve strain on your wrists and also place your hands in a more neutral position. But, you need to learn how to weed out the bad models from the good ones.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 2.75 hrs of research
Equipped with ergonomic grips
Has a weight capacity of 400 pounds
Superior to other versions of the same handles
OUR TOP PICKS FOR THE BEST PUSH-UP HANDLES
1. PERFECT FITNESS ELITE
Equipped with ergonomic grips
Has a weight capacity of 400 pounds
Superior to other versions of the same handles
More padding would have helped, admittedly
Now, Perfect Fitness actually has released a few different versions of their Perfect Pushup. This right here is known as the Elite version and that name is really apropos, let’s just say that.Read more
Now, these are designed with ergonomic grips that have been equipped with rubber in a spiral pattern. Admittedly, though, after long stints, your hands will begin to feel discomfort.
Due to the treads that are integrated on the bottom, these are not going to slip on you. In fact, this will be the case on most floor surfaces.
Overall, this is why the Elites are so much better than any other Perfect Fitness model out there (and any model from any other brand, quite frankly). Their construction is superb and can handle 400 pounds of weight.
Each one of these handles will easily fit in your gym bag if you plan on taking them to your local gymnasium or any other location.
While most of the core is black, the tint of red on each side of each model stands out very nicely.
Looking at this option with no bias, about the only addition that would have made them even better is more padding. As is, the Elite bars from Perfect Fitness are still the best in the world. You could also check our our guide about best pull up bars, which is another great addition to your home gym.
2. JBM PUSH-UP
A few different color options are available
Made of high-quality polypropylene
Very easy to store and transport
The integrated padding is not the best
Most noteworthy about this next option is the fact that JBM designed their handles out of durable polypropylene. Of course, the foam padding is not the greatest, admittedly.Read more
Without question, the padding that has been integrated is nice to have. Yet, JBM could have done their consumer base a solace by making the size of the tubes and the padding less narrow.
Much like there is padding for the grips, there is also slip-resistant rubber that has been engineered on each end of each of the handles.
Indeed, JBM went with polypropylene to construct their bars and this allows them to support massive weights. One user, in fact, claimed their 260-pound husband used them with no issues.
When you need to pack these up and take them with you, the bases can actually be removed. This will end up saving a ton of space in your duffel bag.
There are actually a few different color options available and while this is somewhat trivial, it still nice to have some variety available.
Anyone with larger hands may find these too uncomfortable due to their narrow nature, admittedly. For everyone else, the stability, durability, and portability make these almost a must-have.
3. PERFECT FITNESS
Ideal for all skill levels
Rubber pads are integrated onto the bottom
Sports ball bearings
The bottoms have exposed plastic which causes discomfort
This is another version of the Perfect Pushup from Perfect Fitness but these actually sport ball bearings and this allows them to rotate while you use them. For certain, this is the biggest selling point of this option.Read more
For whatever reason, Perfect Fitness did not add padding to the underside of these. So, the exposed undersides can cause discomfort. In spite of this, each handle features a ball bearing system which allows them to easily rotate.
Speaking of the undersides, on the bottom of these there are integrated rubber pads. These will enhance the stability on any surface that you use them on.
The Perfect Pushup Elite bars, which landed at the top of this list, have these beat in regard to the construction. Yet, with that said, the build quality is still solid here.
With relative ease, you should be able to find room in your duffel bag for each handle.
Once again, a combination of red, black, and gray was used to craft these. And, at the end of the day, it really is tough to go wrong with that combination of colors.
If you wanted to save a little money and wanted push-up bars with ball bearings then this will be a great option for you. It goes to show that even though the Elite bars are better, these are not obsolete.
4. SMARTLIFE PRODUCTS
Can be used on a wide variety of surfaces
Free of latex, PVC, glues or phthalates
Designed with inner ball bearings
The build quality could be better
Can be hard on your hands and wrists
Much like with many of the options offered from Perfect Fitness, these right here can easily be rotated and are circular in their construction. Also, their non-slip base grips ensure excellent stability.Read more
The wide and contoured design of the grips themselves coupled with the ball bearings in the bases makes these very compelling. The problem, really, is the lack of padding.
No matter what type of surface you want to use these on (carpets, rubber mats, marble, hardwood, etc.), the non-skid pads that are integrated on the bottom will provide slip resistance.
Yes, these are mostly comprised of plastic. While these are not the toughest handles around, they are free of PVC, latex, phthalates, and glues so that is nice.
The lighter composition makes these even easier to transport with, quite frankly. Of course, this tradeoff is not that necessary due to the fact that these are already compact in size.
The bright green grips couple very well with the all-black design. Not too many complaints will be made about the style, let’s just say that.
While Perfect Fitness has taken this very design concept and done it much better, there is still a lot to like about these bars. After all, they did secure a spot on this list for a reason.
5. GARREN FITNESS MAXIMIZA
There are two different grip sizes available
The bars are chrome plated
Caps are present to enhance the stability
On the smaller side
A few users have experienced the grips ripping apart
These bars are much, much different than the typical offerings that you will see from a brand such as Perfect Fitness. Admittedly, they are on the smaller side but do offer great strength, stability, and comfort.Read more
The foam padding that has been integrated is pretty sufficient. Of course, what is also nice is there are two different grip sizes for you to choose from.
For the record, there are caps on the bottom of these that enhance the stability. But, due to their small nature, they can roll on your from time to time.
No joins, welds, or pieces are present and each handle is also chrome plated. However, a few users have complained about the longevity of the padding (claiming it can rip too easily).
Due to the curvature of these, you can actually save some space when you store or transport them. They are also not heavy, either.
What is interesting is the different grip sizes sport different grip colors. The Classic sports orange and black grips while the Ultra has black and blue padding.
Indeed, these are completely different than the previous two models. Perhaps they could have been engineered larger but for most of you, they will enhance your experience greatly.
6. IRON CHEST
The bearings can withstand up to 600 pounds in total
Ideal for both beginners and experts
Designed with Arc Movement technology
The bottom needs more rubber backing
Not the best for shorter users
Yes, these are handles but they are actually included on a master machine. Though you will pay a little more money for this model, the Arc Movement technology makes it well worth it.Read more
Though the grips on the handles themselves are pretty good, some previous buyers have noted that this is not the best option for shorter users.
The main premise of this machine is that it utilizes Arc Movement technology to improve your experience. However, the engineers should have equipped the bottom with some type of rubber backing as it slides too easily.
All in all, the bearings that have been built in can withstand up to a total of 600 pounds of pressure. This makes this fit for everyone.
Even though this may not be as compact or as portable as individual handles would be, it is still not too unreasonable to store or transport.
This is really an excellent combination of red, black and silver, and will probably turn some heads, quite frankly.
For those of you looking for something a bit more advanced, then you should really consider investing in this model. And, you could even add some non-slip gripping to the bottom to fix the sliding issue.
7. IDEER LIFE PARALLETTE
Built with 14-inch tall risers
Designed of 1.5-millimeter solid steel
Sports a maximum weight capacity of 330 pounds
The metal is thin-walled
Maybe too large for some users
Right away, just by glancing at the photos, you can tell that these are much larger than prototypical models out there. The 14-inch tall risers, however, do offer you more room for different movements.Read more
In addition to the raised height, these are also equipped with U-shaped handles that measure 1.5 inches in diameter. Also, removable padding has been integrated for enhanced comfort.
As you can see from the design of the feet, these will remain stable on all floor types. This is due to the non-skid rubber caps that have been added to the feet.
Though the metal that is used is thin-walled, it is able to support up to 330 pounds. On top of this, the steel has been powder coated to protect it from rust and corrosion.
Simply due to the larger nature of these, they will be a bit more cumbersome to transport. With that said each bar weighs six pounds and is not overly difficult to move.
At the end of the day, you can’t go wrong with the straight black design of these.
Without question, these are simply different. But, if you are looking for push-up handles that are well-built and offer many different exercise options then these could be exactly what you are seeking.
8. IRON CORE ATHLETICS
Each one supports up to 275 pounds
Backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee
No joins, welds or pieces are present
The padding tears too easily
The narrow design can create instability
Much like with a previous entry on this list, these are designed in a unique pattern that allows you to use them in different manners. All in all, there are a total of three padded, foam grips.Read more
As stated, there are actually three different foam paddings that are implemented. Each of them offers slip resistance and suitable comfort, though, while you are performing.
Due to the narrow design of these, they can be unstable at times. For some of you, the curvature may not be what you are accustomed to using.
Each handle is simply one giant piece with no joins or welds present. Additional, each one is made of high-quality steel and can support 275 pounds (in total). Yet, some buyers have noted that the padding tears too easily.
Even though these will not break down for storage purposes, they are still lightweight and easy to transport overall.
The foam padding is a sweet-looking combination of black and red. For virtually everyone, the style here will be appreciated.
The S-shaped curvature of these handles will either appeal to you or force you to seek other options. The tri-padding design, however, is very nice and something you do not see often.
9. CAP BARBELL
There are black and chrome styles available
Not as flimsy as other models out there
Transporting them will be very easy
The feet do slide at times
The padding is not the best
For popularity and name recognition alone, CAP Barbell’s push-up handles deserve some praise and accreditation. Of course, they are also well-designed so that helps.Read more
Each bar is covered with neoprene-type foam. Yet, one buyer went out of their way to heavily criticize this padding, claiming it to be atrocious and practically useless.
On some surfaces, such as hardwood, the feet will end up giving a little. Still, the hard rubber footpads do enhance the stability overall.
For the price of admission, it is tough to beat the quality here. These are chrome plated and are not as flimsy as even some other metal options on the market.
Let’s just say that there should be no issues present in regard to the portability of these. Of course, they do not come apart, to point out.
If you are not a big fan of the chrome plating then you can opt for a straight black option. Honestly, both choices are excellent.
CAP Barbell would have helped their cause if they would have implemented superior padding here. Their push-up handles are still great, though, and you can always wear exercise gloves to make up for the lack of padding.
10. STRONG HANDLES
An eBook arrives with your purchase as an email attachment
They can be detached for transport
They are at the perfect angle to prevent wrist fatigue
Each handle is mostly plastic
Slipperiness can be an issue
What is really neat about these handles is the fact that the pieces can be detached for easier transport. While some of you may prefer models that are solid pieces, these are quite good.Read more
The combination of the angle that these place your hands and wrists in and the foam grips makes for suitable comfort and grip.
To fix the issue of stabilization, you may want to invest in some non-skid pads to stick on the bottom of these. Of course, as is, slipping can be a persistent issue.
Though these were engineered using mostly plastic, they can withstand at least 310 to 320 pounds (as claimed by the seller) and are “guaranteed” not to break.
The bases can be detached from the main handles and this is very convenient when you are looking to save as much space as possible in your duffel bag.
If you are a fan of fitness equipment that is not flashy, then you will love the visual appeal of these. The matte black finish (some may say it is closer to dark gray) combines well with the black grips.
Even though the engineers should have addressed the stability issue, with minor modifications you can fix it yourself. Doing so makes this model pretty great overall, honestly.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Do you really want your hands to dig into plastic or metal?
If there is something you need to know right away it is that there are different types of push-up handles out there and each of them will alter in their design. Most specifically, the type can really dictate the provided comfort. For example, you can opt for cheaper models that are made of plastic. With these, if there is not enough padding, you will feel the plastic dig into your hands (which will not be pleasant). Of course, you also have U-shaped or S-shaped models and these will typically remain comfortable until a certain point. Due to the narrower size of these models, the grips may end up “biting” your hands and after a certain number of reps may become uncomfortable.
You also have models that sport flat round discs (sometimes with ball bearings attached that allow the entire base to be rotated). Either way, though, you really want to look for models that implement a sufficient amount of padding. No matter what materials were used in the engineering process, none of them will be comfortable. But, the foam grips can make up for this and enhance your grip when you begin to sweat, also.
Ensuring the handles remain stable during use will be essential.
The last thing you want while you are doing push-ups with your new device is for your hands to slip out from underneath you. In order for this to be prevented (outside of needing an optimal grip which was discussed in the last section), each of the handles needs to be stable. This really is a simple concept but there are many options out there that will fail in this area. As with the comfort, however, the different design types can play a role in stability. For example, most plastic models will come with rubber caps on the end. Along the same line, U-shaped and S-shaped models will often sport rubber caps. These are intended to enhance stability but sometimes, they do not do their job very well.
The same goes for options that are flat except that these will typically include non-slip rubber pads on the bottom. And, even if the handles you have your eyes on do not, you can always modify the bottoms with some custom non-slip pads. Of course, with all this being said, the surface you plan to use your pair on will also play a role in the provided stability. If carpet is your surface of choice, then this issue will be minimized (but not with surfaces such as hardwood).
Not only should the model you pick be built to last but it also needs to support your weight.
Clearly, you want the model you buy to last but this is also where you need to assess your own weight. Not to point the finger at any of you but if you are a larger individual, then this section will be of the utmost importance to you. Of course, if something is cheaply constructed then anyone can break it. Most of the time, you will either see push-up handles crafted with metal or plastic. Though plastic models have been known to be cheaper and to bend easier, some of them can still offer great quality. Not too many people, though, will argue that it is better than metal when it comes to pure strength and longevity. Then again, if you do buy decide to go with metal (such as steel) then rust could end up being an issue.
What you really want to focus on, though, is finding models that will support your weight. Typically, sellers will document what their specific handles can support. Oh, and outside of the main materials, some designs will have integrated padding that wears down too quickly and too easily. Just a few things for you to keep in mind during your search, after all.
You never know when you will want to take your handles on the go.
First off, you may be wondering why you would ever need to travel with your push-up handles. Well, the reason you would is actually incredibly simple. Due to how compact they will be, you can take them with you to utilize in different locations. For example, you could take them to your local gym, a friend’s house, or even to the park on a sunny and gorgeous afternoon. Anywhere that you can do push-ups, bring them along. But, is every single model out there portable?
For the most part, you could logically say yes. Yet, and this is to be expected, there will be certain designs out there that are more portable than others. First and foremost, the design type and size will come into play. As an example with S-shaped or U-shaped handles, when you go to place them in your duffle bag, they can be intertwined together to save space (which will not be possible with certain types). Additionally, some models will even be constructed in multiple pieces and will separate for more compact storage.
No, this is not the most important section but hey, style sells, right?
Admittedly, this is not the most important buying consideration that you will need to make. In the grand scheme of things, you could even make the case that this is utterly irrelevant. And, without a moment’s hesitation, it can be claimed that the style should never supersede any of the previous criterions that have been documented. So, with all that rhetoric being spewed, why is this even on here, in the first place?
The main reason is simply that sometimes the little things really do make a difference. No, the style (in regard to the visual appeal) of push-up handles is not going to affect the performance. At the same time, though, you may want them to look “stylish”. After all, engineers out there are smart and some of them will even offer their model in different color combinations (typically with the grips). They say sex sells but the same could be said for style.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Doing push-ups on the floor can be uncomfortable in and of itself so it should not be too hard to ask for your handles to enhance the comfort at least a little bit. Well, as you will find out, the comfort of any given model will be affected by its style and its foam padding. Both are very important but at the end of the day, sufficient padding is going to be needed for both optimal grip and comfort.
Picture this; you are right in the apex of a push-up and then one of the handles slips. Clearly, this is something you will be looking to avoid and in order for this to happen, you need to choose an option that offers superb stability. Once again, however, this will be affected in some part by the design style. Of course, well-designed rubber pads and non-slip bottoms will certainly help.
In spite of the fact that even top-end push-up handles will not be that expensive, most likely, you still would like to buy an option that is built well. While you can always reference the main materials, you really need to look out for a weight rating. You see, most sellers will specifically indicate how much pressure their model can withstand. So, if you are too heavy for a particular option, then pursue others.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Will push-ups be harder?
In a bit of ironic twist, what if you were told that doing push-ups with handles would actually make them more difficult? Now, if you suffer from wrist pain then they will make things easier in this sense. But, when you really think about it, they are designed to make it tougher because they are increasing your range of motion. Subsequently, it places more demands on your core muscles to lift your body up. However, this is not a bad thing in the slightest. As long as you do not overdo it, challenging your body can provide fantastic results.
q: What about risks for daily use?
This seems like an appropriate question after it was just spewed that you need to avoid overdoing it. So, are there any risks involved with doing too many push-ups daily? If you do too many too fast then yes, there could be. You should ease yourself into it and as you progress, increase your daily reps. Of course, proper form is important too because improper form can lead to injuries if you are not careful. It seems asinine to say that as how do you screw up a push-up? Well, you can, let’s just say that.
q: How often should you check the integrity of the handles?
Back when the stability was documented, it was mentioned that one of the last things you want to have happen to you is for your handles to slip from underneath you. This question plays right along with this because if they are also damaged in any way, then they could break on you while you are using them. No, typically, there is not a real risk of danger if you fall while doing push-ups as your body is not that far off from the ground. Still, you should always be checking for holes, wear and tear, and any noticeable damage.
q: How to use them properly?
Do not worry; the plan was not to leave you out in the dark after it was claimed that you can perform push-ups incorrectly. In specific, let’s take a look at what you should be doing with your new handles. Firstly, assume your position as you normally would and then place each handle where you need it. For the record, they can be facing toward your toes or toward each other (it depends on how you want to do it). And, you can even bring them closer and farther apart (as this will target different muscles). Either way, when you come down and then back up, ensure it is in one fluid motion.
q: What about maintenance and care?
Any type of exercise that you partake in can work up a sweat. And, when you begin to notice that your handles have not been washed in a while, you can do very easily. All you will need is a soft cloth, mild soap and warm water. You also want to make sure that you remove all the water and any remaining residue before using them (especially if they are made of steel as you do not want them to rust). Oh yeah, and avoid using any abrasive cleaners (or chemicals, for that matter). As for storage, just avoid leaving them in direct contact to the sunlight and you should be okay.
q: So, what muscles will be worked?
As mentioned, you can actually vary up the muscles that these will target (by simply moving them closer or farther apart). Generally speaking, due to the fact that a push-up uses your body weight as resistance, these will work your core and upper body simultaneously. So, furthermore, you can effectively target your deltoids, shoulders, pectorals, and chest muscles. To think, this can all be achieved by simply pushing your body off of the ground multiple times.