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  1. #1
    BigGreen's Avatar
    BigGreen is offline Anabolic Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    12,000 feet above it all

    I've always wondered why this is so in competitive powerlifting...

    Forgive me if I'm wrong in interpreting how an actual sanctioned meet runs, but all that follows is based on my impressions of having attended a handful and occassionally watching them on the deuce.

    If I understand it correctly, when a lifter performs the squat, he unracks the bar, assumes the position, and when all is 'kosher' with the judge, he is given the 'go-ahead' to begin the lift. He (or she) then performs the lift with no further instruction or commands, only scrutiny. After a hopefully successful lift, it is then up to the judges (one in the small meets I've attended...three, i think, in the ESPN2 televised meets) to determine whether the lift was completed satisfactorily.

    If that is the case, why is it (apparently) different for the bench press? From what I know of a competitive lift, the lifter unracks, descends, and then has to wait for a signal indicating that there has been sufficient pause. I'm curious as to why that is the case. Given the way that the squat is judged/performed, why isn't the bench press done in a similar fashion with the lifter performing the lift at his own pace and pause with the judges then determining whether or not there was sufficient pause in much the same way that they determine whether a squatter successfully broke parallel?

  2. #2
    Adrock is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    I'm not an expert, but I believe that the press command during bench is to keep people from bouncing the weight. Sure the rules could say 'no bouncing' but how do you determine when someone is bouncing the weight and when they aren't. I'd say the required pause is there so they do not have to try to determine if someone is bouncing the weight. You don't really need a judge to tell you when you hit the right depth in a squat, you know it.

  3. #3
    xxxl83 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    long island new york
    The squat is way too dangerous lift to wait for a judges comand. Risk of injury would be too high IMO (for both the lifter and the spotters) picture Brent Miksel waiting for a judge to give a comand with 1071lbs across his back.

    Also if you stopped your downward momentum you would loose your stretch reflex at the bottom of the lift.


  4. #4
    EvilElmo is offline New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    My first post, so please excuse me if I am making a ass of myself.

    I pretty much agree with what xxxl83 posted, I don't know if any of you have heard of a UFC fighter called Tank Abbot, well anyway, he benched like 600lb or something like that by just bouncing it off his chest, which is far too dangerous if you are pushing yourself in areas you do not know you can bench. Far too risky and painful.

    I am not a powerlifter, so this is from a by-standers perspective.

  5. #5
    saboudian's Avatar
    saboudian is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Michigan State University
    I don't think anyone is actually questioning why the pause is necessary.

    I actually saw a big PL meet a couple months ago on ESPN 2, and the bench was run exactly as BG says it should be run. There was 3 judges, at the end of the lift, if you get more then 1 red lite it was a bad lift. I would assume all the feds are slightly different in their rules, this being one of them.

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