The Gopher Performance Detonate VariBar multi-grip bar is a great accessory bar that pronates the lifter’s grip 90 degrees so the palms face each other. This rotated grip takes stress off the shoulders during presses, bent-over rows, and more, reducing the chance of injury. It involves the hands and wrists more as stabilizers for most movements."The @GopherPerform Detonate VariBar multi-grip bar is a great accessory bar that pronates the lifter’s grip 90 degrees so the palms face each other." Click To Tweet
The ability to instantly switch between 3 grip widths makes the Varibar a versatile piece of equipment, allowing for a plethora of movements that target a variety muscle groups. Here are my Top 6:
This is my favorite exercise for the VariBar. Three different hand positions vary the active muscles and intensity of the lift. The narrow grip is especially useful for football players and offensive linemen.
The VariBar provides the same benefits for this lift as the flat bench press, with the multiple grip options as well as wrist stabilization. The pressing angle is altered slightly because of the width of the bar, resulting in lowering it lower on the chest than a traditional barbell.
This is a great option for overhead pressing. The Varibar can be used for this in either a seated or standing position. For athletes, I always prefer a standing position (for all possible lifts) because it is more specific to sport. Almost all sports are ground-based with athletes competing with their feet on the ground, so training in the weight room with their feet on the ground carries over better than a seated position. The VariBar changes the movement path on this lift as well, shifting it forward slightly to adjust for the width of the bar.
Inverted Rows are one of my favorite back movements, and the VariBar is fantastic for these. The palms-in hand position is an ergonomic and comfortable grip for most people.
Even though inverted rows are a body-weight exercise, you can change the difficulty by moving your feet. By bending the knees and moving your feet in closer, you can make it easier. Keeping the legs straight will make it more difficult. Elevating the feet by placing them on a bench or box will be the hardest variation. Regardless of the foot placement, it’s important to keep the torso flat and straight, from the knee through the hip to the shoulder. And always move through a full range of motion. Make sure the bar is high enough so that you can lower it all the way down with straight arms without coming to rest on the floor. Then pull all the way up, chest to the bar at the top.
This is another great back exercise for the Varibar. The grip width variation allows for lifters of all heights to find an appropriate hand position. Maintain a good hip hinge position while keeping the back tight and flat, and maintain the proper bent-over position.
At 52.5 pounds, the VariBar alone will be heavy enough for some lifters when doing hammer curls (palms in) for biceps. By rotating the palms in, the forearms get utilized more than with a straight bar curl. It’s a nice variation from the standard bicep curls.
Is the Detonate VariBar right for you?
The VariBar is a great accessory bar that will get a lot of use in any gym. It is a heavy-duty bar with solid welding, and the black powder coating looks great and should hold up for a long time."The @GopherPerform VariBar is a great accessory bar that will get a lot of use in any gym." Click To Tweet
The distance between the two collars is the same length as a standard weightlifting bar so it fits properly for use inside a squat rack or bench rack. The ends are long enough to hold plenty of plates, so you won’t have to worry about not being able to go heavy enough for any lift. Having three different hand positions gives you a lot of variability and variety. Combined with the added wrist and hand involvement, the Varibar makes for a very useful addition to any weight room.
Add the Detonate VariBar to Your Gym!
Scott Meier is currently in his 19 year at Farmington High School (MN) where he is the Strength & Conditioning Coach. He is also a Physical Education Teacher at FHS and teaches Sports Conditioning, Weight Training, and 9th grade Fitness For Life classes. He coached Farmington’s competitive weightlifting for 9 years, and in that time, the Tigers earned four state team titles, over 40 individual state champions, and multiple state record holders. Prior to that he was the head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Lakeville (MN) High School and worked as a personal trainer for 6 years. Scott is featured in the award-winning documentary “My Run” which tells the story of his 56-year-old client who ran 75 marathons in 75 days. He continues to compete in track & field at the masters level where he is a nationally ranked sprinter and holds several state age-group records. Scott is the current Minnesota state director of the National High School Strength Coaches Association.