Straight to the Bar

All Things Strength


DIY: How to Build an Olympic Weightlifting Platform
Completed Olympic Weightlifting platform

Homemade Lifting Platform. Love it.

This is an easy design for an eight-foot square platform that will stand up to your heavy training for a long time to come. Protect your floor, your weights, and your knees by lifting at home on a proper training platform.

You’ll Need

  • Four sheets of 3/4-inch CDX plywood
  • One sheet of AB or AC plywood
  • One 8′ x 4′ horse stall (rubber) mat
  • About five tubes of industrial-strength adhesive
  • Calking gun
  • 1 ¼” wood screws
  • Drill
  • Reciprocating saw


  • Square
  • Chalk/string straight line drawing tool


  1. Lay it out

    Lay it out.

    Lay two sheets of CDX plywood lengthwise side by side in the direction you will face to lift.

  2. Glue it together

    Glue it together.

    Spread adhesive.

  3. More plywood

    More plywood.

    Lay two sheets of CDX plywood crosswise on top of bottom sheets.

  4. Clamp it down

    Clamp it down.

    Screw sheets together 2″ from edges, 16″ apart, around perimeter and along insides edges of top sheets.

  5. Measure and mark for center plywood sheet, running parallel with bottom sheets.
    (My camera crapped out on me for the next few steps. Grrrr!)
  6. Glue on higher-grade plywood sheet with better side facing up.
  7. Screw top sheet along 4′ edges ONLY.
  8. Cut stall mat in half lengthwise.
    How to: Lay two boards parallel with gap between them. Lay mat over boards. Draw chalk line down the center. Use reciprocating saw to cut mat into two 8′ x 2′ strips.
  9. Add mat strips

    Add mat strips.

    Spread adhesive and lay down mat strips along both sides of top plywood.


My husband and I built my home platform this way, based on a design by Jim Schmitz, as explained in an article on Ironmind by Randy Strossen. We varied only on the adhesive and the mat. I’m contributing my version for some added detail, the technical writing format, and the suggestion of the horse stall mats. Thanks to Tom Hirtz for that idea.

Over to you. Drop us a line on Twitter ( @scottbird ), or add a comment below.



NB : if you love talking about strength-training as much as I do, you might also like to check out the weekly newsletter. A regular dose of fitness-focussed discussions, absolutely free.

And if you'd like to check out any of the stuff mentioned above (or in the comments), swing by Amazon. Huge assortment of fitness gear.



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Kat 'The Mighty Kat' Ricker is a bodybuilder, writer and lover of putting heavy things overhead. Find out more over on her site.
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