View Full Version : Powerlifting training w/o a partner

02-17-2009, 12:24 PM
I have been training with a partner for about 7-8 months now. When I started getting into more PL over BB is when I started working out with him but now due to conflicting schedules I will be working out be myself. I have a feeling I will lose strength now because I do not have a spotter to press heavy weight. I was wondering is there anyone here that trains without a partner if so could you give me so advice on some good work around and maybe a some types of routines to look into to continue to gain strength on my own.

02-17-2009, 12:37 PM
You can use a squat cage and a bench to bench heavy, set the safety bars so they will catch the bar at a safe height. Usually its either about at most an inch off your chest, or in a position that will squeeze you a little bit but prevent any injury, allowing for full ROM but a little more difficulty getting out from under the bar if you fail a rep.

But having a training partner always makes things easier, perhaps make a new friend at your gym? I met a buddy of mine because he was wearing APT wrist wraps and i commented on how few use wrist wraps and went from there, turns out we were very similar in strength and interests. But scheduling conflicts meant we couldn't really train together much. But its a decent example i suppose

02-17-2009, 12:39 PM
I train alone and continue to get stronger; just bench and squat in a power rack and set the safety pins accordingly. It does suck at times, but you just need to push yourself.

02-17-2009, 12:48 PM
I'd say get a rack. I lift alot by myself and the rack is there in case I have issues. With that being said, on teh other hand I do feel like I can push myself more when I have decent spotters around me, and by decent I don't mean any kid in the gym.

02-17-2009, 01:11 PM
Have you checked out Albany Strength? (http://www.albanystrength.com/)

As long as you train in the rack and setup the pins properly, you should be OK. Having training partners is much much better though.

Lones Green
02-17-2009, 01:49 PM
I trained alone for a long while. I got stronger, but not near at the rate I am with partners.

02-17-2009, 01:57 PM
Have you checked out Albany Strength? (http://www.albanystrength.com/)

As long as you train in the rack and setup the pins properly, you should be OK. Having training partners is much much better though.

I use to go to Planet Fitness (a really suck ass gym) due to my work schedule and having my daughter during the day. So I would work from 5pm-1am got the gym 1:30am-3am and then get up with my daughter at 8am and watch her all day. I now go to Golds Gym because they have daycare during the day time for her and I can get my work out in. I have been to Albany Strength a few times for supplements and PL comps I just do not have the time to get into there when they are open do to my schedule.

02-17-2009, 02:34 PM
I train by myself, you just have to be careful. If I need a spotter, I ask for some one that I know is a decent lifter (no kid, as mentioned above). It's always better with some one, but you have to do what you have to do to get the job done.

02-17-2009, 02:51 PM
I train by myself, you just have to be careful. If I need a spotter, I ask for some one that I know is a decent lifter (no kid, as mentioned above). It's always better with some one, but you have to do what you have to do to get the job done.

Same here, never had a partner i just use a rack if i need some kind of safety...

02-17-2009, 02:55 PM
Great topic. I have trained by myself for some time and it was no big deal until I started powerlifting. I utilize a lot of the things guys have listed on this thread along with writing out my workouts ahead of time including the weights I use on key lifts. I never liked doing this before but now it gets me focused on the workout, I get amped & antsy during the day thinking about it, and it keeps me from bailing out early on a workout.

Having an MP3 player is HUGE. I also workout at a few different places including the local University where I played & coached. That is awesome because of the energy.

It is tougher to lift solo - no question but I like it because I lift when I want to lift and I do things I like to do. Getting ready for a meet ensures I don't miss any workouts. Good luck

02-17-2009, 03:42 PM
lol, I made the mistake of having one of the female employees spot me at a gym one time (she was the only person around) .... at the time, I was only doing 200lbs NG BP, that weighed more than her though. On my last rep my tris gave out completely and she couldn't lift up the weight. So I just sat up and carried the weight off of me... I was more embarassed than anything lol.

02-17-2009, 04:08 PM
If you are just doing raw powerlifting, you can get away with training by yourself if you are careful. If you are trying to use bench shirts and suits, its going to be alot harder. Some guys can do it, I know for me I have a hard time getting anything over about 450lbs off of the rack while benching without a spotter/liftoff.

02-17-2009, 04:19 PM
Training alone definitly sucks after a while. If your lifting in gear, your gonna need partners. If your raw, you can definitely do it alone. It's just not as much fun.

02-17-2009, 06:18 PM
I agree with the poster who said that he enjoys working out alone because he does what he wants, when he wants, how he wants. I just ask for a spotter from some people I know at the gym who go at the same time. I find myself way more focused working out by myself, but when I get a spot, I can push my weighta little.

02-17-2009, 08:01 PM
That was me. I'm just stubborn like that I guess but I know what works for me and I train around years worth of FB injuries on so on so there are some exercises I just avoid. When I need a spot - I get someone I know.

I do train RAW which makes it easy to train alone. Big Mike T (275 USAPL) trains solo and he handles real man weights. He has some great videos on how he puts his gear on by himself. Training solo in gear works for him but for assistance alone it has to be a lot easier with help. He is obviously a pretty special athlete.

Being in a smaller midwest city - everybody knows everybody and that is something I do love about where I live but when it comes to working out it can be a huge pain in the ass. I have love for my people and I am never rude but I hate being interrupted - especially when I am just starting or while I am hitting my big lifts. I do a lot of stretching in between sets or I superset a lot of exercises and I don't like to stop. I'd go to the bar if I wanted to talk. I generally train at odd times during the week (or at home) and really early on Saturday & Sunday morning before the crowds come in.

When I bench at home (not in the rack) I leave the collars OFF just incase. Of course if I was benching tractor trailors like these darn videos on this site I'd be in the rack :)

02-18-2009, 09:36 AM
I used to workout with a couple of friends, but they have their routine and they stick with it, no matter what. I couldn't even get them to squat. They still do the same routine, have made no gains and often watch me lift. Either of these guys will spot me if I need it, which is good, but otherwise, turn up the tunes on the Ipod, lift and ignore everyone, so I can do what I want.

02-19-2009, 05:19 PM
I train without a partner and without a power rack. If you have to do it, you have to. Or you could quit. There are no routines you use for solo lifting. You just on your own...

02-19-2009, 05:21 PM
Great sig, Erik!

02-22-2009, 05:31 PM
i train alone (well i actually found a powerlifting gym today that i might join lol). been training alone for the past two years at the local YMCA. I've befriended pretty much everyone there. they all know me as the crazy powerlifter dude who always needs a spot or help getting a bench shirt on. the only problem i have training alone is that there is never anyone there to push me, tell me i'm doing something wrong, or how to do something better. you pretty much just have to push yourself and do your research.

02-22-2009, 06:19 PM
i also lift alone - a lot of heavy metal and planning make it easier. the hardest part is psyching yourself up for big lifts.