Frequently Asked Questions About Getting Started in PowerliftingHOW DO I TRAIN FOR POWERLIFTING?
This is like asking How high is the sky? There are too many possible answers. But in general, your training will center around the big three lifts, the squat, the bench press, and the deadlift, and supplemental exercises that will assist them. Look for exercises that use multiple muscle groups and joints. Like close grip benches rather than tricep extensions. Squats rather than leg extensions. Rows rather than bicep curls.
There are many philosophies of training out there, so try them all, but work most at finding the one that works best for you. Look to the CPU Links page for some good places to start, or the CPU training forum.
WHERE DO I TRAIN?
Powerlifters tend to be treated with disdain by many gym owners. We make too much noise, drop the weights and wreck their floors, mess the place up with chalk, and intimidate the "general fitness" crowd. It's a gym for god's sake! Not a living room! Even if none of these items are true, they still think this. So if you find a gym that is PL friendly, try to keep these behaviors to a minimum, and work at inspiring the spandex crowd, not scaring them. You might need them
to spot you one day.
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO START?
Find a coach! Someone in your area that has been into PL for a while, has been in a number of contests and knows the ropes. But give him the respect he deserves. He's probably giving up his own time, or rearranging his own workout routines to help you. A good mentor can be invaluable. Nothing is worse than getting to your first contest and finding out that those bodybuilder types who told you that your squats were "super deep" really meant "a mile high".
WILL I GET INJURED BY HEAVY WEIGHTS?
I'm not going to say that injuries don't happen, but they are less common that most people think. Our bodies are capable of great feats, as long as it is done correctly. A coach will teach you the right way, and you should never suffer serious injury beyond the "aches and pains" type. Sore muscles are good!