We highly recommend purchasing a hip thrust barbell pad.
It will provide ample protection for your crotch, and help attain better stabilization. Also, most of them can also be used for squatting too.
Considering all that — we’ve got some of the best choices right here!
Best Barbell Pads for Hip Thrusts & Squats
- Best Overall: Gladiator Strength Barbell Pad
- Best for Hip Thrusts: Abmat Hip Thrust Barbell Pad
- Best for Women: Perfect Peach Athletics Barbell Pad
- Best for Heavy Squats: Iron Bull Strength Advanced Squat Pad
- Best Budget: Dark Iron Fitness Barbell Pad
- Most Comfortable: York 2″ Heavy Duty Barbell Pad
If there’s one exercise that has truly become the staple of every gym in the past couple of years — it’s the hip thrust.
For those who want an awesome hip extension, this is pretty much the most effective exercise out there. There’s no learning curve to overcome, it successfully targets your posterior chain and your glutes; while also assisting you in raising the power of main lifts.
However, as great as this workout is there is one downside. And it’s a pretty obvious one — we’re talking about a barbell being right beneath your most private parts.
Seeing as the higher strength levels in this exercise will mean having quite a lot of weight on this bar, you will definitely want to provide some padding protection.
Best Overall Barbell Pad: Gladiator Strength Barbell Pad
- Length: 17.7 inches
- Thickness: 1.3 inches
- Closure: Straps
- Comfort provided by ergonomic shape
- No rolling and extreme security provided by two straps
- Almost 18 inches in length
- Slippery without straps
When it comes to the very best barbell pads for squats and hip thrusts, there are a couple of factors you want to keep in mind. And among these, the Gladiator Strength Barbell Squat Pad definitely manages to fulfill the most important ones.
In other words — you have all of the stability you need with a foam that’s almost an inch and a half thick; while also being almost 18 inches long. What this means is that you get all of the protection you could possibly want, as well as maximum comfort.
Speaking of protection — these barbell pads rarely slip since two distinct straps keep them secure. However, we have to mention that the pad is much more slippery if you don’t use both straps, so make sure you don’t misplace or entirely lose them!
Best Barbell Pad for Hip Thrusts: Abmat Hip Thrust Barbell Pad
- Length: 19 inches
- Thickness: 1.75 inches
- Closure: None
- Specifically manufactured for hip thrusts
- Cannot be used for squatting
If you’re looking for the best barbell pads just for hip thrusts — we’ve got another excellent product right here.
The AbMat Hip Thrust Pad definitely deserves its name, seeing as it was designed specifically for this kind of exercise. As a result, you don’t need to use rolled-up mats or any kind of neck pad for this.
There’s also an ingenious patent-pending technology that allows you to distribute the weight of the bar better than ever before; while providing you with all of the protection you need for your pelvis. The fact that it’s definitely thick and long enough is a great afterthought as well.
We’re definitely talking about a revolutionary product; the only downside of this that we can find is the fact that not everyone will be used to a barbell pad that doesn’t roll-up.
Best Barbell Pad for Women: Perfect Peach Athletics Barbell Pad
- Length: 17.7 inches
- Thickness: 3.6 inches
- Closure: Straps
- Designed specifically for women
- Excellent foam padding
- Sometimes slips with the thickest bars
While gym equipment is mostly unisex, it’s always nice to find that there are products designed specifically with the female physique in mind — and the Perfect Peach Barbell Pad is just that!
Luckily, this barbell pad for squats and hip thrusts is definitely top-shelf stuff, meaning you won’t have to make any compromises if you buy it.
Apart from being female-specific, it’s also quite long-lasting — we’ve found that this barbell foam has a longer lifespan than most other products on this list. Plus, the actual foam padding can certainly stand its ground compared to most other offerings on the market.
The only downside is that, while it’s made to fit most regular gym bars; the thicker ones do cause some slipping. Luckily, there are straps you can use to counteract this effect.
Best Barbell Pad for Heavy Squats: Iron Bull Strength Advanced Squat Pad
- Length: 18 inches
- Thickness: 4 inches
- Closure: Quick Snap
- Excellent matte finish
- Variety of colors to pick from
- Somewhat bulky
The next choice on our list comes from the famous Iron Bull manufacturers — their Next Gen model of barbell pads for hip thrusts was definitely a great product. And this next iteration is even better — as well as thicker. Compared to the 16 inches of their previous pad, this one has 18 inches of length and even more thickness.
There is plenty to like about this product, while there’s a classic matte black finish, you can also choose from other colors if you were so inclined. And the fact that it has a matte finish means that squatting will be far safer; this kind of pad is usually better at adhering to your skin.
The only real issue here is that the stability is somewhat compromised by the sheer bulkiness of the pad; however, this shouldn’t be a problem for most people, and it really depends on your stature.
Best Budget Barbell Pad: Dark Iron Fitness 17 Inch Extra Thick Barbell Neck Pad
- Length: 17 inches
- Thickness: 3 inches
- Closure: Velcro
- Great build quality
- Polyester won’t absorb moisture
- Interesting designs
- Doesn’t fit 2-inch bars
Our penultimate choice of barbell pads for hip thrusts and squats comes from Dark Iron. Now, you should bear in mind that this product was primarily meant to be used while performing lunges; but it works great with pretty much any kind of powerlifting.
The brand itself is a new one, but they’ve already established themselves on the market for lifting products.
Even if you use a hefty amount of weight, this pad will keep you stable and comfortable.
One of the best things about it is the material — it’s made out of 20% polyester, and the rest is pure high-density foam, all of which is encased with velcro. As a result — there’s practically no chance of this pad slipping or becoming a burden.
The only problem here is that 2-inch bars don’t fit nicely with this pad; though that’s not a universal issue.
Most Comfortable Barbell Pad: York 2″ Heavy Duty Barbell Pad
- Length: 18.8 inches
- Thickness: 2 inches
- Closure: Velcro
- A cover you can wash
- High-quality foam
- No slipping
- Somewhat pricey compared to competition
The final product that we’ll review here is definitely an expensive one — but the money you pay is well worth it if you want maximum possible comfort.
First of all, you should know that the York 2″ pad is made with Olympic bars in mind, meaning that even the most professional athletes and lifters will find value in this product.
Also, the cover is quite easy to clean and wash — while the foam below provides all of the comfort that you will ever need. Apart from that, the pad is encased with a Velcro-esque cover that will handily slip around your bar.
All in all, it’s a great product — but it can be somewhat too expensive for the average user
Best Barbell Pads Buying Guide
When it comes to the best barbell pads for hip thrusts, buying the right product is quite important.
After all, you want the maximum possible safety and the highest level of comfort you can imagine. And that can only be achieved if you take all of the required factors into consideration before making a purchase.
With that in mind — we’re going to explore some of the most important aspects of barbell pads right here!
One of the first things that you need to think about while buying barbell pads is the kind of fastening that your pads use. There are basically two distinct kinds — the velcro and strap closures.
Both are fine, and they have their pros and cons. For instance — velcro fastening tends to be safer and more secure, but the straps are far easier to handle, and there’s no thinking about whether the Velcro is worn out, causing you to buy another product.
Next up, there’s the pad’s thickness. As you’ll see, there are varying levels of thickness among these pads. And generally speaking — thicker is usually better, as it provides more padding and means you can handle bars with more weight without feeling pain or unease.
The ergonomics of the shape of the pad also represent an important factor. This largely depends on the type of exercise you intend to use the barbell pads for.
If you’re just going to do hip thrusts, for instance; you may not need a central groove on the pad for protection of the cervical spine. Conversely, heavy squatting definitely demands such a feature because of stability and safety.
Easy to Clean & Washable
Not all of the practicalities concerning barbell pads have to do with exercise. At the end of the day, you also want this to be easy to maintain and clean up.
So, this depends on the kind of fabric that the pads are made of. Polyester pads absorb less moisture, but foam pads are generally quicker to clean.
Barbell Pad FAQs
What Are the Benefits of Using Barbell Pads?
If you’re someone who does a lot of heavy squats — you will find that a barbell pad is ideal for providing you with a pain-free and safe experience.
That’s one of the major benefits of using these barbell pads; you find that the barbell bar’s weight is evenly distributed across the entirety of your back — allowing you to focus better and squat more safely.
That’s why the barbell pads used for squats tend to have a middle groove in them; that’s there to protect your spine. And if you’re going to be a long-term powerlifter or do recreational exercise with weights — that’s definitely an important factor in avoiding disc issues.
What Exercises Do You Use Barbell Pads For?
There is a wide range of exercises where a barbell pad can be useful. For one, there’s the most obvious choice — the squat. If you intend on safely squatting and protecting your front delts and clavicle — you will definitely want to use a barbell pad.
Apart from that, there are also the eponymous hip thrusts. If you want to do this exercise right, there’s basically no getting around the use of a barbell pad. With all of the weight that’s resting on the bone of your hip, you want to provide it with ample protection.
Lastly, there are also the lunges — the benefits of using barbell pads in this exercise are somewhat obvious when we notice that the bar is situated in a position identical to squatting; making the pads just as useful as they would be in a squat.
Are Barbell Pads Safe to Use?
This is one of the safest kinds of exercise products out there. If anything, barbell pads are designed to make your hip thrusts and squats safer and more secure; so there’s no question about the fact that they’re an excellent addition to any home gym.
As you can see, there are plenty of different barbell pads out there; while most of them are a good choice, we recommend bearing the advice from our buying guide in mind while making your pick.
That way, there’s no chance of getting something wrong!