Home Community More Muscle Up to Powerlifting as Popularity Grows

More Muscle Up to Powerlifting as Popularity Grows

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More Muscle Up to Powerlifting as Popularity Grows

The competitor steps onto the platform, grabs the bar with a grip so strong, that their palms start to ache. As they pull on the bar to lift the heavy weight, there is no pain on their face, only motivation and determination. The sport of powerlifting has become popular over the years. Both men and women compete in it, not just to be better than everyone else, but to be better than themselves.

Powerlifting is a competitive sport where the lifter attempts to lift as much weight as they can. It does not just happen overnight. They must prepare for it by slowly increasing the weight over time. The three main lifts are squats, bench and deadlift. There are certain rules that need to be followed in these lifts, depending on the federation you compete in, some rules might be slightly different. For all three lifts, commands will be given by the judges and they must be followed to get white lights, which allow you to continue on to your next heavier weight attempt and to get a good overall score on your lifts.

In squats you need to hit below parallel, meaning your hip joint is below your knee joint, which leads it to a certain minimal depth to make the lift comparable across lifters.

For bench, the weight must be lowered and raised after being ordered by the judge, so you have to pause the bar at your chest until you are told to press it. The commands for deadlift are simply: you lift the weight from the ground and hold at that top position, then when you are told to drop it, you must keep your hands on the bar all the way down. In the competition, there are judges around you to make sure all the requirements are met.

Marvin Drexler, 21-year-old lifter, believes that “there is a lot of research and theory behind powerlifting because you have to plan your training, nutrition and recovery.” As he looks down at his notebook, which contains his future lifts, he includes that “it is more than just a sport, it is like a full time job, where you are always working towards improving yourself.”

For a long time, powerlifting was seen as a sport for only men, but now you can find many strong women lifting some heavy weight. Isha Parol, ASU student and powerlifter, believes Powerlifting is a great sport.

“You get to see what your body is capable of and you get to break your own personal records,” she said. “It gives you this feeling of empowerment, strength and confidence which is unlike anything else.”

She says that, “the powerlifting community is very supportive and always building people up; they always want to see you do well.”

In many of the other competitive sports, opponents are cold toward each either; that is a big difference in powerlifting because even if powerlifters are competing against everyone else, in some ways, everyone will still be on the same team. In this sport, competitors are mainly against themselves, trying to beat their last scores.

Powerlifting has become a popular sport. The popularity seems to sometimes start with cross fit, which also uses the three main lifts. Richard Wenner, former Arizona USA Powerlifting competitor and Arizona State University Associate Head Coach, agrees.

“The onset of cross fit as well as raw lifting has created the perfect storm. The membership of USA Powerlifting is at an all-time high,” Wenner said, “it is an activity that can help any individual of any age, athlete or not. It can increase and maintain bone density, muscular strength and flexibility/mobility. It is also another avenue for those looking to stay active and possibly compete. It allows people to set goals and train regardless of their level of expertise or abilities.”

Wenner compares powerlifting more to a casual runner who does a 10k for fun. “Powerlifting is something you can do for yourself and is an activity that you can enjoy doing.”

 

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