Best Strongman Log and Axle Reviews 2018
updated October 5, 2018
In this article we will focus in on two pieces of equipment that you absolutely need to have in your home gym strongman arsenal. They are the log and the axle. We’ll review the best brands on the 2018 market. We’ll also provide you with some training tips so that you can get the best use out of your investment.
Strongman Log Bar Reviews
Slater Hardware offer 3 premium quality logs at the following sizes and weights:
- 10 inch diameter log with 60-80 pounds resistance that is 48 inches long
- 10 inch diameter log with 60-100 pounds resistance that is 68 inches long
- 10 inch diameter log with 100-120 pounds resistance that is 68 inches long.
The lighter of the three logs, the BootCamp log, is not plate loadable. The other two are plate loadable. All three models have a gap of 24 inches between the handles. Newly designed handles are ergonomically crafted for comfort and functionality.
Slater logs are made from premium grade ash or oak hardwood. They provide you with a great feel and the varnished timber looks great, too. All of the hardwood that you need is provided with each log, and they come complete with rope wrapping.
Each log will arrive sanded smooth, stained and sealed.
The Rogue log is actually made of heavy duty steel rather than timber. This log features a neutral handed, which is in contrast to the angled handles which you find on most logs.
The Rogue logs all feature fully welded end and internal plates. They are constructed from 1/8 inch thick premium steel. Handles are 1.66 inch diameter neutral grip. The Rogue logo is laser cut into the top side of the log.
The CFF Log has two unique features over the competition. Firstly, it has dual handles to provide you with more gripping options. The second is the price. The CFF log is considerably cheaper than the other options we reviewed.
The CFF Log is made of heavy duty steel. It weighs in at 32 kg, making it an ideal starting weight for beginner lifters. You can add up to 300 pounds onto the loading pins on either side of the log. The CFF log comes complete with a pair of collars that do a very good job of keeping the plates secure. The log is 49.5 inches long and it has a diameter of 9 inches.
The CFF Log is very sturdily constructed and has a great balance that makes it the ideal training log.
Axle Bar Reviews 2018
The Rogue axle bar comes in Rogue’s custom black finish. It is 1.9 inches in diameter all the way through. The bar weighs in at 25 pounds, compared to 45 pounds for Rogue’s standard olympic bar. The bar is powder coated. Being an axle, the bar is simply a straight pipe.
The Rogue axle bar is 7 feet in length with 52 inches between the collars. Rogue also put out a more compact ‘stubby’ axle which is 5 foot long.
The Rogue axle bar comes with a pair of quality quick grip collars. There is no knurling on the Rogue axle bar, which makes it more comfortable on the back of your neck when you are performing exercises such as the squat. The large diameter of the axle bar also spreads the load over a larger area when you are squatting.
Best of the Rest
The OneFitWonder axle bar is a true fat bar that weighs in at 44 pounds. This is in contrast to many axle bars which are hollow and only come in at around 20-25 pounds. It is powder coated in black and is 2 inches in diameter for a total length of 7 foot. You won’t be able to fit your standard collars on this bar. Fortunately, however, it comes with its own lockjaw collars which do a great job of securing the weights in place.
The bar is made in China but don’t think that it is of inferior quality. This axle bar is solid and true. Unlike other models, the paint doesn’t easily chip off and the black matte powder finish looks very stylish.
The Onefit Wonder axle bar is one of the few axle bars you will find that weighs in at conventional olympic bar weight. Being a true fat bar, it doesn’t feature any knurling, which makes it more comfortable to grip and rest on your skin. This bar also comes it at a very impressive price point, making it our top rated budget axle bar and second quality bar overall.
Why You Need This Equipment
When you watch a strongman competition, it’s easy to think that you’re seeing some basic gym moves that simply replace the traditional barbell with a different object, such as a log. That type of thinking could easily lead a person to the belief that all they need to do is train with normal compound gym moves, like the clean and press, deadlift and bench press and they will be ready to handle the demands of strongman.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
To get yourself ready for strongman competition, you have simply got to train with the same equipment that you’ll be competing with. The perfect balance and equilibrium of a barbell will never prepare you for the unique challenges of lifting a huge stone, or carrying a yoke, or even of hoisting a massive log overhead.
The Strongman Log
Many guys who come into strongman with a powerful bench and an impressive overhead press poundage, make a hash of the log clean and press when they first attempt it. The problem comes down to form, not strength. Often things go horribly wrong at the start as they attempt to get the log up and into pressing position. Rather than cleaning it by using the power of their hips, legs and back, they attempt some type of weird curling action that puts their whole body out of alignment.
The best way to approach the log lift is to stand in front of the device with feet shoulder width apart. Position the log so that the handles are pointing up at 45 degree angles. Now bend down, keeping a neutral spine, and take a strong grip on the handles. Tense your upper back and breathe in deeply. Now row the log into your lap. With elbows flared out, keep pulling the log up so that it rides up high on your chest. Now drive your hips forward as you come up to a standing position. Use the power of your quads and lats to drive yourself upright.
In the standing position, the log will be directly in front of your face. Your elbows should be high with your back in a neutral position. Your eyes should be looking directly ahead.
Now press the log back over your head until you reach lock out.
The Strongman Axle
So, what, you may be asking, is a Strongman axle? It is simply a lifting bar that is thicker than your average barbell. Most conventional bars are one inch in diameter. The strongman axle bar is double that thickness, at 2 inches diameter. However, some axle bars are as wide as 3 inches in diameter.
The strongman axle bar totally transforms any exercise that you do with it. Having a bar that is double the thickness that you are used to puts all of the emphasis on your forearms and your grip.
To build up your strength, and simply to be able to cope with the challenge of the axle bar, you will want to use a mixed grip. This involves having one hand forward facing and the other backward facing. For a double hand grip, perform the axle bar deadlift with a reduced weight for high reps.
When using the axle bar weight, you will want to use more chalk on your hands than you would when using a conventional bar. However, you should not use lifting straps on the axle bar as this would pretty much defeat the purpose of having the axle bar in the first place.
Having your own log and axle bar will allow you to take your strongman training to the next level. You will be giving your body the opportunity to get comfortable with the actual equipment that you’re going to be facing in competition. We’ve presented to you the best brands in each category, allowing you to purchase with confidence. Click here to read our review for the best Atlas stone molds that you can find on the market.