Weight plates are an important part of the equipment for any home gym. However, their price tag can come as a shock to customers.
Like many other people, you may have wondered why weight plates are so expensive. I looked it up and have some answers for you!
Why Are Weight Plates So Expensive?
1. Weight Plates Use Expensive Materials
Weight plates come in two types – bumper plates and iron plates, and both are made from expensive materials.
For example, iron plates are made from heavy-duty iron, which is costly.
Also, bumper plates are even more expensive than iron plates as they are made with rubber that is produced mostly in Southeast Asia and shipped worldwide.
Further, bumper plates have a stainless steel insert, which adds to the costs of materials and the manufacturing process.
Sometimes, bumper plates can be coated with urethane, which is more durable than rubber but is more expensive.
Lastly, weight plates are bought in sets, which can bring the total cost to around $5 to $600.
2. High Demand Since Gyms Closed
There has been an increased demand for weight plates and other gym equipment because people started to exercise at home when gyms were forced to close during the pandemic.
Also, even though the pandemic is over and gyms are open again, people continue to use and equip their home gyms.
3. Production Decreased Due To COVID
At the same time that demand for weight plates for home gyms has increased, their production has slowed down.
That said, this is due to supply chain problems affecting many industries during and after the pandemic.
Even before the pandemic, weight plates were not mass-produced, and manufacturers had to charge a higher price per unit to recover their costs and make a profit.
4. Shipping Costs Are High
Even before the pandemic, weight plates were expensive due to the materials used and the high shipping costs.
By definition, weight plates are very heavy items, and the shipping cost is correspondingly high.
Therefore, customers who buy weight plates online may have to pay a “heavy-item” surcharge in addition to delivery fees.
5. Warehousing Is Expensive
In addition to the cost of materials, production, and shipping, warehouse fees are another expense associated with the sale of weight plates.
Further, weight plates are popular with weightlifters and fitness enthusiasts, but that’s not a large demographic.
So, shipments of weight plates and other bulky gym equipment may have to be stored for a while before being sold, and the rent for warehouse space is added to the price.
6. Top Brands Cost More
Top brands like Again/Faster, REP, and Rogue Fitness cost more, but the quality is worth it for most customers.
Further, Eleiko is a Swedish brand that sells the most expensive weight plates, but these are also the best quality.
Also, weight plates are not something you often buy, so it’s worthwhile to buy the more expensive item and get something that will last.
7. IWF Certification Adds To The Cost
The best quality weight plates come with a certification from the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), which is a distinction like Michelin stars for a restaurant.
Further, bumper plates can get IWF certification if they meet plate width, diameter, weight, tolerance, and marking standards.
Additionally, they must be made with high-grade, dense rubber, and the different weights must be color-coded.
The manufacturer also incurs extra costs in gaining the IWF certification, which increases the product’s price.
To learn more, you can also read our posts on why dumbbells are so expensive, why bicycles are so expensive, and why golf clubs are so expensive.
Weight plates are expensive for several reasons, starting with the cost of the raw materials used to make them.
For example, iron, steel, and rubber are all costly materials, and the manufacturing process is complex.
Shipping costs for heavy items like weight plates are very high, and warehousing is also added to the cost.
Lastly, weight plates with IWF certification and from top brands are more expensive, but they are a worthwhile investment for a home gym.