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Gainsdalf the Whey

Doing Powerlifting Competition? Got questions? Ask them Here.

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We highly encourage all members to go out and do participate in official competitions in their chosen strength sport. There's nothing that will pump you up to hit a new PR like the environment of doing it on stage with like minded people, and there's nothing that motivates you to train like knowing you've got to step on a stage on put your strength on show on a given date. A lot goes in to preparing for these competitions, especially once you get into the nitty gritty of it, including but not limited to: how to cut weight, if you should cut weight, what weight class to aim for, how to plan your volume/intensity leading up to a meet, how to recover after a meet, proper form for various federations, learning the liftings commands, etc. This is the place to ask all those questions. I hope to update this initial post with a FAQ as we get into it.

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So... yeah.  I'm coming up with loads of questions.  I'm focusing on USAPL rules.

 

1)  Are Vibrams legal for the Deadlift?  Plan on doing squats and bench in my Romaleos, but I'm curious if Vibrams would constitute the same as a "deadlift slipper".

 

2)  For my t-shirt under my singlet, I was originally going to do just a white t-shirt, but saw this (page 21 of the rules).  

 

the t-shirt may be plain i.e. of a single color and with no logos or emblems, or may bear the logo or emblem... in national and lower level contests only, the lifter’s club or individual sponsor, where that logo or emblem has not otherwise been approved by the IPF.

Does this mean if I'm part of the NF team, I could wear a NF t-shirt? Later on down in the rules, it all but says this is legit (page 28 of the rules). 

 

One logo may be worn on the lifting suit and/or T-shirt in national or local level competition representing the USAPL national organization, the lifter’s USAPL registered club/team, or the lifter’s USAPL regional/state logo.

 

Time to order up a NF t-shirt.   :)

 

3)  Page 28 states the following:

 

Socks may be worn in the squat and bench press. Shin-length socks must be worn to cover and protect the shins while performing the deadlift. 

 

This legit?  So I have to get big ass socks?  

 

4)  The whole rack height thing.  I have no idea how that's determined, but I was going to try and go to the gym that is hosting my meet prior to the meet and see if they could help me figure it out.  That seem like a decent enough plan?

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4)  The whole rack height thing.  I have no idea how that's determined, but I was going to try and go to the gym that is hosting my meet prior to the meet and see if they could help me figure it out.  That seem like a decent enough plan?

Usually the federation brings in their own weights and equipment so if you show up before the equipment is there it will be a wasted trip. There is usually enough time between weigh in and the meet starting for everyone to get their rack heights set. maybe if there is a weigh in the night before you could knock it out then?

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So... yeah.  I'm coming up with loads of questions.  I'm focusing on USAPL rules.

 

1)  Are Vibrams legal for the Deadlift?  Plan on doing squats and bench in my Romaleos, but I'm curious if Vibrams would constitute the same as a "deadlift slipper".

No. For some assinine reason they are not. I think they are leaning on the wording of "bottom of the shoe must be uniform and flat" for the official ruling, but it seems to more of a traditional apparel "this is not what a lifter looks like" sort of deal.

 

 

2) For my t-shirt under my singlet, I was originally going to do just a white t-shirt, but saw this (page 21 of the rules).

 

Quote

One logo may be worn on the lifting suit and/or T-shirt in national or local level competition representing the USAPL national organization, the lifter’s USAPL registered club/team, or the lifter’s USAPL regional/state logo.

Does this mean if I'm part of the NF team, I could wear a NF t-shirt? Later on down in the rules, it all but says this is legit (page 28 of the rules).

Time to order up a NF t-shirt. :)

 

Yeah, that's new in the last year or two. We can wear our team logo on national level competitions or below as long as it's not vulgar and not advertising another lfiting federation.

 

 

3) Page 28 states the following:

 

Quote

Socks may be worn in the squat and bench press. Shin-length socks must be worn to cover and protect the shins while performing the deadlift.

This legit? So I have to get big ass socks?

 

Any socks counts for the squat and bench, don't know why on that one, but you can't go sockless under your shoe. For DL, it's so everyone isn't dealing with blood on the bar. Yes, you have to get big ass socks. The easiest is a pair of soccer socks, though they sell deadlift specific ones that are a bit shorter. I wear them whenever I deadlift, even in training. I still get scrapes, but they're not as bad.

 

4) The whole rack height thing. I have no idea how that's determined, but I was going to try and go to the gym that is hosting my meet prior to the meet and see if they could help me figure it out. That seem like a decent enough plan?

 

Don't bother. There's plenty of awarm up time and once you check in, the first thing you do other than weighing in is go back to the warm up area and test out rack heights for squat and bench. Each pin setting will have a number on it, and you just report that in at the same time you give them you opening lifts before your flight starts lifting. Just work it so you're not fiddling with it when the flight/class that is currently lifting is warming up on it.

 

I wasn't clear on this myself before my first competition and actually measured my pin heights with a tape measure from the ground before showing up. When they asked my pin heights, I said something like 56 and 48, giving them the rack height in inches. They looked at me like I had three heads then told me to go do what I described to you above. Turns out they only have settings from like 1-20 or something like that.

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There seem to be about a zillion federations out there.  Would you mind giving a rundown of the major ones and what the story is with each one? 

 

I'd like to know how to prioritize my choices about which meets I want to do, and to make sure that any equipment I purchase conforms to the standards of the strictest important federation.  And I definitely don't want to end up doing anything with a federation that is not drug-tested.  I'm primarily interested in powerlifting in the United States, but any and all info would be appreciated.  Thanks.

 

 

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The biggest drug tested federation is USA Powerlifting (USAPL), which is the national arm of the IPF (International Powerlifting Federation). It's the ony I compete in and know the most about. It is:

  • Heavily drug tested. I believe 1 out of every 5 lifters is supposed to be randomly tested at each event at the end of the event.
  • 2 hours weigh ins- you weigh in 2 hours before lifting, which makes it hard to cut too much weight and perform well. Makes the weight classes more honest as far as what the person is lifting at.
    • Others feds have 24 hour weigh ins, which makes it possible to cut a lot of water weight to the point your performance would suffer, before eating and drinking it back over the next 24 hours. Think on the level of 10-20 lb in some cases here.
  • Both RAW and Equipped divisions. RAW is wrist wraps, belt, and knee sleeves (no wraps).
    • Some other feds allow knee wraps in their RAW divisions.
    • USAPL is getting super strict with what equipment they allow, and have a list on their website as to which vendors and models are legal. Most people think this is just a bid to get fees from the vendors, though they say it is in the name of streamlining equipment checkouts.

Trying to think of anything else about USAPL. They are probably the strictst when it comes to equipment and rules. Other people will have to talk about other feds if they've lifting in them. I have no experience outside of USAPL.

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Great to see all of this info being combined into 1 thread.

 

copied from my previous thread:

As far as how an actual meet runs, I would like to know how long a meet lasts ( so I can plan food/drink and such), how long will I generally have between lifts, what kind of strategy should I use...or am I seriously already overanalyzing things and should just focus on showing up and moving the weight..
 
I know I will still need to get a singlet and, apparently, longer socks.

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Thanks for the info.

 

 

USAPL is getting super strict with what equipment they allow, and have a list on their website as to which vendors and models are legal. Most people think this is just a bid to get fees from the vendors, though they say it is in the name of streamlining equipment checkouts.

 

If I have this right, USAPL goes by the IPF guidelines.  The approved StrengthShop singlets are only 25 bucks, so at least you can get into a legal singlet for a low price.

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I've lifted in the USPA (United States Powerlifting Association) and its international arm the IPL (International Powerlifting League).

  • Non tested
  • 24 hr weigh-ins
  • Raw, Classic Raw, Single Ply and Multi Ply divisions
    • Raw = Knee sleeves 
    • Classic Raw = Knee wraps
  • Less strict approved equipment rules. They have an approved list but also allow the Meet Director to sign off on.
  • Allow the use of a deadlift bar.

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No. For some assinine reason they are not. I think they are leaning on the wording of "bottom of the shoe must be uniform and flat" for the official ruling, but it seems to more of a traditional apparel "this is not what a lifter looks like" sort of deal.

Think my Asics wrestling shoes would work? Been awhile since I even tried those on, but I think they'd still fit.

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Here's a slightly different question: I want to go to a PL meet, but probably later this year, sometime in fall. Powerliftingwatch doesn't currently show any meets in my state this year past August. Does this just means meets aren't listed that far in advance, or is that the off season, or what?

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think this warrants 3 threads? I feel like the confusion between federations alone are a lot in PL let alone mixing in strongman or WL, which both have their own set of rules and idiosyncracies.

If not carry on, just an idea :)

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Timely, I'm doing my first PL competition in a few months!

 

I have a weight class question! Currently I'm weighing in about 66kg and within the last 9 months or so I've been 61kg. So I'm wondering whether I should aim to drop some weight to get to <63kg. Based on previous experience, to do that I will have to track calories and I find that a little depressing and tedious on a long-term basis. 

 

As this will be my first competition I'm torn between just going as whatever weight I happen to be, or putting in the effort as it's proportionally not much weight to lose. Any advice? 

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think this warrants 3 threads? I feel like the confusion between federations alone are a lot in PL let alone mixing in strongman or WL, which both have their own set of rules and idiosyncracies.

If not carry on, just an idea :)

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Probably. 

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Timely, I'm doing my first PL competition in a few months!

 

I have a weight class question! Currently I'm weighing in about 66kg and within the last 9 months or so I've been 61kg. So I'm wondering whether I should aim to drop some weight to get to <63kg. Based on previous experience, to do that I will have to track calories and I find that a little depressing and tedious on a long-term basis. 

 

As this will be my first competition I'm torn between just going as whatever weight I happen to be, or putting in the effort as it's proportionally not much weight to lose. Any advice? 

 

Don't drop weight just for the comp. If you want to lose weight, go for it, but the advantage you'll get from lifting at -63kg in your first comp will be minimal at best.

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think this warrants 3 threads? I feel like the confusion between federations alone are a lot in PL let alone mixing in strongman or WL, which both have their own set of rules and idiosyncracies.

If not carry on, just an idea :)

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

It shouldn't be a problem. There are only 2 Strongman feds with nearly identical rules and only one weightlifting fed. Besides fed-specific stuff I can't imagine contest prep would be that different between disciplines outside of some added conditioning for us.

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So... has NF hit some type of critical mass of newbie strength? It seems like in a pretty short period we have a shit pile of members doing their first contests. These are exciting times.

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Here's a slightly different question: I want to go to a PL meet, but probably later this year, sometime in fall. Powerliftingwatch doesn't currently show any meets in my state this year past August. Does this just means meets aren't listed that far in advance, or is that the off season, or what?

I've found that power lifting watch doesn't have a lot of the local meets listed, usually just big ones. I would check the websites of all the individual federations for your state.

 

Don't drop weight just for the comp. If you want to lose weight, go for it, but the advantage you'll get from lifting at -63kg in your first comp will be minimal at best.

I've found the difference between 63 kg and 72 kg to be HUGE in all the ones I've watched/competed, but for your first competition chances are you won't place/win anyways so it wouldn't make much of a difference. Just got to get the experience under your belt. (pun intended)

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Here's a slightly different question: I want to go to a PL meet, but probably later this year, sometime in fall. Powerliftingwatch doesn't currently show any meets in my state this year past August. Does this just means meets aren't listed that far in advance, or is that the off season, or what?

 

yeahhh. that.  I'd look at your specific federation's page. 

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I've found the difference between 63 kg and 72 kg to be HUGE in all the ones I've watched/competed, but for your first competition chances are you won't place/win anyways so it wouldn't make much of a difference. Just got to get the experience under your belt. (pun intended)

The point was that unless you're going to be competitive at the lower weight and not at the higher weight, there's little point in cutting just for competition, and certainly not for your first one where the aim is to get used to the rules and not bomb.

And if you do decide to cut, factor in that your lifts are likely to drop somewhat with the weight.

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The point was that unless you're going to be competitive at the lower weight and not at the higher weight, there's little point in cutting just for competition, and certainly not for your first one where the aim is to get used to the rules and not bomb.

And if you do decide to cut, factor in that your lifts are likely to drop somewhat with the weight.

I couldn't agree with this more.  Unless you're going for medals or records the cut is not worth it, and even then you need to consider whether or not you'll hit your intended target after the weight loss.

It isn't just strength that changes on a cut but your leverages change a bit too.

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Great to see all of this info being combined into 1 thread.

 

copied from my previous thread:

As far as how an actual meet runs, I would like to know how long a meet lasts ( so I can plan food/drink and such), how long will I generally have between lifts, what kind of strategy should I use...or am I seriously already overanalyzing things and should just focus on showing up and moving the weight..
 
I know I will still need to get a singlet and, apparently, longer socks.

 

Depends on how many people and how many platforms they run.  But I've never had one (out of 4) go less than 6 hours end to end (weigh in to all done).  I usually end up taking a cooler of stuff (as does almost everyone else).  This is one of the things that is most different from our virtual contests.  Most comps run flights of 15-20 lifters.  Each person takes a minimum of say 2 minutes (setup the weights, call ready then you have a minute to lift, lift, next).  So each attempt end to end could be 30 to 40 minutes.  Cause there are always pauses and mess ups (wrong weights, etc).  3 attempts for each lifter and you've just spend almost 2 hours on the squats....  It takes a while.  So plan on eating and drinking alot.  Plus you will have to warmup multiple times just because of the time it takes.  The good thing is that because of the time span, you'll probably deadlift more...

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Oi PL feds. And people wonder why things like the AWF and the attempted resurgence of AAU lifting is bad for WL. USAW has its problems but I think we can safely say based on the situation in PL that none of the answers to these problems include more feds. Ugh.

 

Ok end dreail. Carry on.

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