20 Best Crossfit Barbell Workouts For Ultimate Strength

CrossFit is a highly effective workout program that combines powerlifting, high-intensity interval training (HIIT), and calisthenics. The Crossfit exercises are challenging but highly efficient. You can also challenge your strength and fitness level by performing various Crossfit workouts with barbell and weight plates. I’ve shared the full-body CrossFit barbell workouts that will boost your strength, power, endurance, and agility in this article.

Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or pro, you can do these workouts at the home gym or commercial gym – depending on where you exercise.

Top 6 Crossfit Barbell Workouts for Beginners

  1. Barbell Back Squat
  2. Barbell Bench Press
  3. Military Press
  4. Barbell Hang Clean
  5. The Sumo Deadlift
  6. The Good Morning

1. Barbell Back Squat

The barbell squat is a lower body workout that primarily strengthens quads and beefs up muscle mass. It also burns plenty of calories, increases stamina, and helps you scale up for intermediate and advanced barbell CrossFit workouts.

Powerlifting Back Squat
Powerlifting Back Squat

How to do it:

  1. Put the appropriate weight into the bar, urack it and hold it on the back of your shoulders.
  2. Stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart and chest up.
  3. Brace your core, inhale and bend at your hips and knees to squat down until your glutes are parallel to the floor.
  4. Press into the floor with your feet to slowly return to the standing position.
  5. Repeat for the required number of times.
  6. Keep your back flat during the entire movement.

You can also perform the front squat to enhance your squatting movement.

2. Barbell Bench Press

The bench press is the most lovable exercise in the gym. Beginner, intermediate, and pro all love to do it. It is an excellent workout for developing upper body strength and mass, especially the chest muscle.

powerlifting bench press
powerlifting bench press

Steps to perform barbell bench press:

  1. Put the required weight into the bar and lay down on a flat bench with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Unrack the bar and hold it firmly over your middle chest. That’s start.
  3. Brace your abdominal muscles, inhale and press the bar with your strength until your arms are straight and directly over your chest.
  4. Pause for a moment at the top, and then return to the start.
  5. Perform the suggested reps.

3. Military Press

The military or overhead press is a primary compound lift for shoulder muscles. You can do it both in the seated and standing positions. However, doing it in the standing position also engages core muscles and improves balance.

It improves pressing movements and helps you perform various barbell Crossfit workouts efficiently, such as clean and press, push press, and thruster.

Barbell Overhead Press
Barbell Overhead Press

Steps to perform standing barbell overhead press:

  1. Grab a loaded bar with shoulder-width grip and stand tall with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Hold the bar on your front shoulder with your elbows pointing down and palms facing up.
  3. Brace your core, inhale, and press the bar overhead until your arms are straight.
  4. Exhale, pause for a moment at the top, then return to the start in a controlled manner.
  5. Do not let your wrist arc; keep them firm so you can perform each rep safely and effectively.

4. Barbell Hang Clean

The hang clean is a part of clean and press, and it is suitable for beginners. It improves explosiveness, power, and balance and scales you up for advanced Crossfit movements.

How to perform:

  1. Grab a loaded barbell with an overhand grip with your hands shoulder-width apart and stand upright.
  2. Keep your arms straight so the bar is in front of your thighs. Maintain tight core.
  3. Slightly bend your knees (to generate power) and pull the bar over your front shoulder simultaneously.
  4. Extend your knees to stand up back.
  5. Do three sets of eight to ten reps each with 65 to 70 percent of your 1RM.

5. The Sumo Deadlift

The sumo deadlift is a powerlifting workout that reinforces lower body muscles and improves athletic movements. It is slightly easier than a conventional deadlift, so you can start with this before lifting heavy loads during the standard Deadlift if you’re a beginner.

Crossfit Barbell Workouts for Beginners
Sumo Deadlift

Steps to do it:

  1. Insert the required weight into the barbell and stand upright with your feet two times wider than shoulder-width apart and toes pointing 45-degree outward. Make sure the bar is close to your shin.
  2. Keeping your back straight, bend at your hips to grab the bar. Make sure your arms are between your legs.
  3. Take a deep breath and pull the bar with your total strength until you return to the standing position.
  4. Do the suggested reps and sets.

6. The Barbell Good Morning

The Good morning exercise strengthens posterior chain muscles, especially the lower back and hamstrings. Doing it before or after Deadlift and squat can minimize the risk of injuries and low back pain.

Steps to do it:

  1. Grab a bar, put it on the back of your shoulder, and stand straight in the shoulder width stance.
  2. Brace your core and pushing your hips back, slowly lean your torso forward until it is parallel to the floor. Keep your back as flat as possible during the entire movement.
  3. Perform a couple of sets of 8 to 10 reps with a naked barbell.

7 Best Barbell CrossFit Workouts For Intermediate

  1. Barbell Push Press
  2. Barbell Overhead Squat
  3. Barbell Conventional Deadlift
  4. Barbell High Pull
  5. The Zercher Squat
  6. The Split Clean
  7. Barbell Squat Jerk

1. Barbell Push Press

The push press is an excellent workout to increase strength, mobility, and explosiveness. It works on multiple muscles, such as the shoulder, core, and legs.

Steps to do it:

  1. Insert the required weights into the barbell, stand upright and hold the bar over your shoulder with your hands are shoulder-width apart.
  2. Slightly bend down and then explosively press the bar overhead until your arms are straight.
  3. Return the bar to the start and repeat for the desired number of times.

2. Barbell Overhead Squat

The overhead squat is an intermediate-level barbell CrossFit workout. It engages various muscles simultaneously, such as the shoulder, core, and legs.

It is an excellent exercise to improve strength, mobility, and stability. However, it’s challenging and requires better balance.

Barbell Overhead Squat Crossfit Workout
Barbell Overhead Squat

I recommend you to check the Bodybuilding article on barbell overhead squat to learn more about it.

Let’s see how to do it:

  1. Grab a loaded bar with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width grip and hold it over your head with straight arms.
  2. Stand upright with your back straight. That’s the starting position.
  3. Squat down until your hips are parallel to the floor and then return to the standing position to complete one rep.
  4. Do the required number of sets and reps.

3. Barbell Conventional Deadlift

The Deadlift is a compound movement that engages various muscles simultaneously, such as the hamstring, quadriceps, back, and core.

Barbell CrossFit Workout
Barbell Deadlift

It builds up ultimate strength, promotes hypertrophy, improves your athletic performance, such as jumping and running, and helps you perform other CrossFit barbell workouts efficiently.

How to perform Deadlift:

  1. Put the desired weight into the bar and stand upright with your feet hip to shoulder-width apart and shin close to the barbell. Please wear the gym waist belt for safety.
  2. Push your hips back, bend your knees enough to grip the bar.
  3. Hold the bar with an alternate grip with your hands are just outside your legs. Your back should remain flat during the entire movement.
  4. Brace your abdominal muscles, take a couple of deep breaths, and lift the bar with your full strength without bending your elbows, until your hips come forward at the end of the lift.
  5. Puase for a moment, and then return the weight safely on the floor.
  6. Perform 2-6 deadlifts at your 65-90% of One-rep max (1RM).

4. Barbell High Pull

The barbell high pull solidifies various muscles of the upper body and the lower body at once, such as shoulder, quads, hips, biceps, and back. Moreover, It enhances speed, stability, and balance and helps ramp you up for other Crossfit barbell workouts.

How to do it:

  1. Put the desired weight into the barbell and hold it in front of your thighs with straight arms.
  2. Pull the bar toward your neck as quickly and high as possible.
  3. Pause at the top and then lower the bar to the start.

5. The Zercher Squat

The Zercher squat is an advanced variation of the front squat and requires enough strength and balance to do it. Doing it properly will increase your quad stability, beef up mass, reinforce your forearms and core.

How to do it:

  1. Put the desired weight into the barbell and hold it on your arms (in the crooks of your elbows).
  2. Stand upright with your back straight and core tight. That’s the starting position.
  3. Squat down as low as possible so your elbows can reach inside of your knees.
  4. Push your feet into the floor the stand up back.
  5. Keep your chest up throughout the squat.
  6. Perform the suggested repetition.

6. The Split Clean

The split clean is a modified variation of the traditional squat clean. It improves speed, balance, and stability and helps you perform other Crossfit barbell workouts effectively.

It is done in the same way as squat clean, but rather than taking the bar into a squat position; you’ll need to move under in a split position.

7. Barbell Squat Jerk

The squat jerk is another explosive movement where you have to press the bar over your head in an explosive way. It works on various muscles at once, primarily the legs and shoulder, and helps you improve other overhead pressing movements.

How to do it:

  1. Grab a loaded bar and place it on the front of your shoulder.
  2. Stand tall in the hip-width stance and hold your hands on the bar just outside your shoulder. That’s the start.
  3. Bend at your hips until you reach in the quater squat position.
  4. Now, extend your hips and knees explosively until your heels are off the floor and press the bar overhead simultaneously.
  5. Lower your hips to squat down with your arms straight overhead.
  6. Return to the start and repeat for the suggested reps.

Advanced Crossfit Barbell Exercises to Get Stronger

  1. Barbell Clean and Press
  2. Power Clean and Split Jerk
  3. Barbell Jammer
  4. Barbell Power Snatch
  5. The Split Snatch
  6. The Thruster
  7. The Sumo Deadlift High Pull

1. Barbell Clean and Press

The clean and press is a full-body compound workout that works through the upper and lower body and improves agility, solidity, and explosiveness.

I’ve already shared a compressive guide on clean and press; you can check to learn more about it.

2. Power Clean and Split Jerk

The power clean and split jerk is one of the best Crossfit barbell workouts that reinforces the many muscles of the lower and upper body and boost your muscular endurance, agility, and mobility.

How to do it:

  1. Put the desired weight into the bar and stand tall with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Bend at your hips to grip the bar and hold it firmly with your hands shoulder-width apart.
  3. Lift the bar off the floor and as the bar reach halfway (above your knees), pull it on the front of your shoulders, and stand upright.
  4. Now, raise your heels off the floor and get into split squat and press the bar overhead at the same time.
  5. Repeat for the suggested duration.

3. Barbell Jammer

The jammer is a total body workout you can do with a barbell to strengthen your glutes, chest, core, shoulders, and triceps at once.

If you’re on the way to a fat-to-fit journey, you can do barbell jammer to burn burns plenty of calories while building lean mass.

How to do it:

  1. Place the one end of the bar in a corner so that it stay intact and insert the appropriate weights into another end.
  2. Stand in front of the barbell with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and hinge at your hips to sqaut down and grab the head of end (2) of the bar firmly with your both hands. The bar should be between your feet.
  3. Push your feet into the ground and drive your hips forward until your knees are fully extended.
  4. In the running motion, raise your heels off the ground and press the bar in front of your head simultaneously until your arms are fully straight. That’s one rep!

4. Barbell Power Snatch

The power snatch is one of the best barbell Crossfit workouts that is explosive, heart pumping, and highly effective exercise. However, it is also challenging and requires good form and technique to perform soundly.

Doing it correctly will help you bolster your total body strength.

Let’s see how to do it:

  1. Insert the appropriate weights into the barbell and stand tall with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Push your hips back and bend your knees to low down and grab the bar with your hands just outside your knees.
  3. Lift the bar off the floor and as it reaches your hip, raise the bar in front of you all the way until your arms are straight overhead.
  4. Extend your knees to return to the standing position to compete the first rep.

5. The Split Snatch

The split snatch is performed in the same way as the power snatch, but rather than lifting the bar into a parallel standing position, you’ll need to move under in a split stance.


6. The Thruster

The barbell thruster is a multi-movement compound exercise that includes several movements, such as snatch, squat, and overhead press.

It solidifies various muscles of the upper and the lower body, such as quads, shoulders, and core.

How to do it:

  1. Put the appropriate weight into the bar and stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Bend at your hips to grip the bar and hold it firmly with your hands shoulder-width apart.
  3. Lift the bar off the floor and as the bar reach halfway (above your knees), pull it on the front of your shoulders, and stand upright.
  4. Now, perform a squat and press the bar over your head when you return to the standing position.
  5. Again do a squat and press the bar until you stand up back.

7. The Sumo Deadlift High Pull

Many Crossfitters often overlook the sumo deadlift high pull; however, it is one of the best exercises of all time. It works on quads, hamstrings, gluteals, shoulders, core, and back, and increases strength and explosiveness, and helps you perform other Crossfit barbell workouts more efficiently.

To perform this movement, start to lift the bar in a sumo deadlift stance but use lighter weights than you usually do. And while returning to the standing position, pull the bar explosively toward your neck as high as possible.

Barbell Crossfit Workouts Summary

BeginnerIntermediateAdvanced
Barbell SquatBarbell Push PressBarbell Clean and Press
Barbell Bench PressBarbell Overhead SquatPower Clean and Split Jerk
Military PressBarbell Conventional DeadliftBarbell Jammer
Barbell Hang CleanBarbell High PullBarbell Power Snatch
The Sumo DeadliftThe Zercher SquatThe Split Snatch
The Good MorningThe Split CleanThe Thruster
Barbell Squat JerkSumo Deadlift High Pull
Crossfit Barbell Workouts List

Crossfit Barbell Workouts PDF


Related CrossFit Exercises

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