Lifting Suits and Other Jokes on Lifters


Go to any powerlifting meet and you will see what are known as super suits. These are the spandex/elastic suits that if you are back stage you will see three lifters struggling
to sqeeze a fourth lifter into. As my father used to say, stuffing 10 lbs of stuff in a 5 lb bag. These suits are to keep the lifter tight and prevent injury. Right, and Clinton never inhaled and Barry Bonds is as clean as the pure driven snow.

The suits do one thing, they, due to their elastic properties, enable you to lift more. A bencher that knows how to use his suit will typically get 100lbs additional added to their T-Shirt max. Don’t believe me? Google some video’s of suit blowouts. Did the lifter that had the suit blow complete the lift successfully? If it’s just to help keep you tight and prevent injury, certainly they had the strength to lift it.

We have come full circle. In the 70’s lifters started wearing multiple pears of Levi?s stretch denim jeans turned into cutoffs. A really tight pair, a slightly looser pair and one more over that for good measure completed a forerunner to the supersuit of 1990’s and beyond. Once this started the ball rolling we saw tennis balls ace bandaged behind knees for spring in squat. That has to be great on the knees, you can tell your grandson how strong you were as he pushes your wheelchair. This finally culminated in a lifter appearing on the squat platform wrapped mid-chest down to mid thigh in elastic bandages.Shortly thereafter clothing and wraps were greatly restricted and you got to see how good the lifters rather than their gear was.Today, we have the stretch denim’s and elastic wraps, but they look different they come from sporting goods merchandisers with all manner of fancy names and looks – and apparently legitimacy.

From a slate article

High-end shirts are so taut that for the bar to even reach a bencher’s chest, the fabric has to be compressed with incredible force. (At one meet, Rychlak had to abandon an 890-pound lift because it wasn’t heavy enough to force the weight down to his pecs.)

Yeah, those shirts don’t help you lift more, they just make it safer. Yeah, that’s it.Or how about the time we re classed the Olympic lifters. It was because lifters were slightly bigger than before and the new classes reflected that. Right? Not so fast. This was when the IOC took it’s tough stance on steroids and there weren’t all the designer steroids that changed each year to keep ahead of the test. If the lifters did increase in weight it was probably the enlarged spleen and liver from the GH as much as it was muscle. At the time there was not a good reliable, cost effective GH test, so that’s the direction most took. The IOC was still worried though because if we clean up the sport, how many years will it take until a record is set in the whatever kg. class? No records set or broken, and people won’t watch. Then one smarty spoke up and said, I know. Shift the classes and we?ll have entirely new world records across the board. And it was good.

Related:  Another article talking about suits and the like.

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2 Responses to “Lifting Suits and Other Jokes on Lifters”

  1. Powerlifting as an Olympic Sport? « Resistance Trainer Says:

    […] as an Olympic Sport? Before when I wrote about lifting suits and other jokes on lifters, I was serious. The gear (suits and “other” performance enhancing items) make […]

  2. Derek Says:

    Powerlifters are jokes because of their gear, both the gear on their bodies and for most in their veins. I applaud the raw orgainizations.

    Let’s see a powerlifter puts 500lbs on a bar and has a suit that takes three people to squeeze him into, he lays down and slowly, if the shirt allows the bar to come down to his chest first, presses the weight back up.

    Contrast, an olympic lifter takes the same weight, goes out there in a singlet, rips the weight off the floor and rams it overhead.

    No wonder people laugh at powerlifters.

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