The topic of gear use in competition elicits reactions ranging from supportive (pun intended) to very negative. While some factions focus on the specific argument of whether one discipline should replace the other, there is an overlooked potential benefit of gear use regardless of discipline choice … protection.
Consider the challenges of strength training. It’s fair to say that powerlifting has the potential to create greater stress on ligaments, tendons, muscles, and bone than other sports. As such, informed, disciplined training and coaching is vital. When done properly, lifters can make great progress and undoubtedly will end up stronger than the average male or female. However, moving heavy weights on a regular basis over time will eventually result in wear and tear on the body.
Over time, lifters may start to experience stress throughout their musculoskeletal system. Tendons may become inflamed, or may not track properly; joints may hurt, crack, or pop; or ligaments may become damaged, etc. And this may become more pronounced as time goes on. One way to think of this is to compare a powerlifter’s body to a high-performance race engine. Of course, performance will be superior to a regular engine. But over time, parts will wear and tolerances (critical fit of parts) will deteriorate. An engine can be rebuilt, but bodies cannot.
Whether your chosen discipline is classic/raw or equipped, one way to mitigate wear and tear is through the use of supportive gear. No doubt, this statement may generate controversy. But, in the coming weeks ahead we’ll be offering food for thought.