The Powerlifting Competition FAQ v2.2


The routines and techniques described in this FAQ are intended only for healthy men and women. People with health problems should not follow the routines without a physician's approval. Before beginning *any* exercise or dietary program, always consult your doctor.


Acknowledgment must be made to Matt Brzycki, Strength and Conditioning Coach at Princeton University, for his reviewing the drafts of this FAQ and making some excellent suggestions for improvement.

Acknowledgment must also be made to Fred Hatfield Jr., Assistant Strength Coach at James Madison University, for reviewing Version 1.0 of this FAQ and making some great suggestions for Version 2.0.


  1. Why this FAQ?
  2. Why Compete?
  3. Where are the Competitions?
  4. Some General Rules of Powerlifting
    1. Age Categories
    2. Bodyweight Categories
      1. Men
      2. Women
  5. What Weight Class?
  6. A Sample Powerlifting Training Program
  7. Training for a Competition
    1. Performance of the Squat
    2. Performance of the Bench
    3. Performance of the Deadlift
  8. Powerlifting Equipment
    1. Squat Equipment
      1. Squat Suit
      2. Belt
      3. Knee Wraps
      4. Squat Shoes
      5. Powerlifting Underwear
      6. Wrist Wraps
    2. Bench Equipment
      1. Belt
      2. Wrist Wraps
      3. Bench Shirt
    3. Deadlift Equipment
      1. Deadlift Suit
      2. Belt
      3. Deadlift Shoes
      4. Knee Wraps
      5. Baby Powder
      6. Shave the Legs
    2. Weigh-in
    3. What do You Eat?
    4. The Competition Begins
      1. The Rounds System
      2. Conventional System
      3. Warming Up
        1. A Method to Time Your Warmups
    5. The Judging
      1. Causes for Disqualification of a Squat (IPF)
      2. Causes for Disqualification of a Bench (IPF)
      3. Causes for Disqualification of a Deadlift (IPF)
    6. The Attempts

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