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WhateverItTakes
05-09-2010, 11:20 AM
Powerlifting is going no where. I think it is a tremendous sport with tremendous athletes (and some of the best people). However, it has gone, and will continue to go no where if we do not unify. I am not sure how many organizations there are, but there has to be over a dozen.

I am not debating raw vs. single ply, vs. multiply. I am saying that the sheer number of organizations and multiple records are "thinning the pot". I understand that powerlifting is an underground sport and probably will never reach the huge mainstream as football or baseball, but how can we expect it to have a chance to grow if we do not come together and try to make it more appealing to the masses. Think about it, any sport that is truely successful has one organization and unified records and rules.

I don't want to be rude or take shots at any promoter or organizer, but I think by creating and running multiple meets, they are destroying the sport. If the sport came together, and had on unified organization with one raw division, one single ply, and one multiply and come to an agreeable term of what raw means. Then we will have more "understandable" records, a single entity for fans to be drawn to, all the top guys competing in one oragnization with the same rules.

And simply, the athletes can get more prize money (b/c of greater sponsorship, more entry fees going to one organization, and more mass appeal), less bickering/disention (sp?) among athletes and promoters. The sport as a whole will not look like some fly by night circuis act.

Look at the huge success of the RAW Unity meet, in just a couple of years it has exploded and become one of the top meets. And it isn't even a sactioned meet.

I love the sport, and I WANT it to grow. And I truely think it can. It's just that we need to take proactive steps and put our own personal agendas aside in order to do that.

This is just my opinion, but what does everyone think? And what steps can we begin doing inorder to achieve this goal?

Sean S
05-09-2010, 11:53 AM
It sounds nice in theory, but likely won't happen. I just don't see people agreeing on equipment and judging standards. For instance, a squat video can be posted and there will be a huge difference of opinion regarding the depth. You will get everything from "looks good" to "6 inches high" based on the very same video. While most powerlifters agree on most very basic judging standards, there are enough things that people just fundamentally disagree on that I don't see completely uniform judging standards ever happening.
I honesty don't see unification as an overwhelming desire of the vast majority of lifters. Most people do this as a hobby and they simply want to have meets that are close to home. They also don't really care if the sport is perceived as a "circus act" by outsiders. They enjoy lifting in whatever environment they choose and lift to break their own PR's and have fun.

Lones Green
05-09-2010, 12:31 PM
Yeah there are too many differing opinions. I think it will increase bickering because you can't cater to everyone with just one federation. Look at the USPF 25 years ago or so

On the other hand, I agree that there are too many feds

WhateverItTakes
05-09-2010, 02:43 PM
You both are very right, there is always debates as to whether a lift is legit or not. But I think we can all agree that squats need to break parallel, benches need to be paused, and deads can't be hitched. Now if there was one governing body, then every judge at every meet must have been "taught" the proper depth for squats, pauses for the bench, and what a legit deadlift would be. Then those are the standards for all. Granted, this is easier said than done, but I thingg the dividends would be great for the sport and the athletes.

As far as competitors wanting meets close by, there is no reason why many guys can't be running meets all over (just like there are now). Except they would be running the meet through one fed. and under one set of rules.

I think this is they way it things should have been from the start, except things have gotten out of hand...but that doesn't mean we should not come back and make it right with one fed. now.

SoCoBarbell
05-09-2010, 03:16 PM
One big step has been taken already as I see it. Eric Talman has taken over Powerlifting Watch. Those of you who don't know. Eric is the director of the raw unity meet. He has access to sponsors and is really focused on uniting powerlifting. I also feel the Bells could have something real special with their new magazine if they use it to it's potential.

I'll never understand why people HATE on each other raw, single ply, multi-ply. Makes 0 sense to me. If you're happy doing what you do then just be happy. I started raw. Now single ply and soon I'll go multi-ply. I can't for the life of me understand why any one would care what I do.

The way I see it powerlifting needs a Joe Weider.............. Body building was nothing before Joe and Arnold. But, Joe had vision and Arnold had charisma. Now bodybuilding is a billion dollar industry.

I hate in a way to say this but, Kieran Kidder was the closest thing this sport has ever had and obviously he made mistakes. The man was on to something though. The BOMB outs at meets are terrible for the sport. And "unfortunately" America is a visual nation. Bodybuilders are the over developed image of what almost every American man wants to be. The super hero image. Kieran made statements of the people not being interested in looking at fat men lift weights. I hate to piss people off but, every one who watches the worlds strongest man knows Marius. Look at the guy. It will take someone like him to be the Arnold of powerlifting.

I hope some day the Joe Weider of powerlifting shows up. I would love to become a pro powerlifter some day and make a living doing it. There's a body builder at the gym we train at. Dude makes 100s of thousands a year doing what he loves and is no where near being Mr. Olympia. I can only dream. As it stand right now we have no chance in this sport we all love and I think it's a shame. Too, many people would rather spend their energy bashing the next guy instead of being an Arnold type representative of this Great sport.

We should in my opinion be able to lift the way we want raw, single ply, multi-ply within a basic standard of judging all on the same stage proudly doing what we like. Encouraging ever guy on that stage to do his or her best. Instead of having our heads up our asses believing our way is the only way. Get mad at me if you want but, it's all you haters that are brain washed into believing your way is the only way who keep our sport held down.

Sean S
05-09-2010, 03:21 PM
Ideally that sounds fine, but who decides what is "breaking parallel" for example? Like I said, people seem to view this so differently that no matter what standard you settled on, some group would be upset and likely not participate. The other problem is that in the U.S. people like having options. If there is an organization or meet organizer who runs bad meets or has poor judging, people can simply go somewhere else to compete. Then how do you tackle the issue of drug testing? There are people who have very, very strong feelings about this on both sides of the argument. Short of the government forcing powerlifting under one organization, I just don't see it happening.
I like your ideal, but I just don't see anyone with the will, resources, time, and influence to make it happen. I just wonder if everyone's time would be better spent trying to improve the organization they currently lift in.

SoCoBarbell
05-09-2010, 03:26 PM
EAZY. Just like the APF. They have the APF and the AAPF. Non tested and tested. Again, if someone wants to use steroids it's non of your business as long as you're not competing directly against them. No need what so ever to hate on them. I'm drug free but, root my ass off for tested and non tested guys to break record.

WhateverItTakes
05-09-2010, 04:47 PM
One big step has been taken already as I see it. Eric Talman has taken over Powerlifting Watch. Those of you who don't know. Eric is the director of the raw unity meet. He has access to sponsors and is really focused on uniting powerlifting. I also feel the Bells could have something real special with their new magazine if they use it to it's potential.

I'll never understand why people HATE on each other raw, single ply, multi-ply. Makes 0 sense to me. If you're happy doing what you do then just be happy. I started raw. Now single ply and soon I'll go multi-ply. I can't for the life of me understand why any one would care what I do.

The way I see it powerlifting needs a Joe Weider.............. Body building was nothing before Joe and Arnold. But, Joe had vision and Arnold had charisma. Now bodybuilding is a billion dollar industry.

I hate in a way to say this but, Kieran Kidder was the closest thing this sport has ever had and obviously he made mistakes. The man was on to something though. The BOMB outs at meets are terrible for the sport. And "unfortunately" America is a visual nation. Bodybuilders are the over developed image of what almost every American man wants to be. The super hero image. Kieran made statements of the people not being interested in looking at fat men lift weights. I hate to piss people off but, every one who watches the worlds strongest man knows Marius. Look at the guy. It will take someone like him to be the Arnold of powerlifting.

I hope some day the Joe Weider of powerlifting shows up. I would love to become a pro powerlifter some day and make a living doing it. There's a body builder at the gym we train at. Dude makes 100s of thousands a year doing what he loves and is no where near being Mr. Olympia. I can only dream. As it stand right now we have no chance in this sport we all love and I think it's a shame. Too, many people would rather spend their energy bashing the next guy instead of being an Arnold type representative of this Great sport.

We should in my opinion be able to lift the way we want raw, single ply, multi-ply within a basic standard of judging all on the same stage proudly doing what we like. Encouraging ever guy on that stage to do his or her best. Instead of having our heads up our asses believing our way is the only way. Get mad at me if you want but, it's all you haters that are brain washed into believing your way is the only way who keep our sport held down.

I totaly agree that the unification of bodybuilding through the help of Joe Weider and Arnold is what has brought that sport to the level its at today (even though it is still a fraction of what other sports are). I agree, that the debate of raw, single, and multiply is ludacris, and the debate over tested and non tested is over the top. Just make the distiction between classes and let everyone compete where they want.

And your right on the money with Eric Talman creating the raw unity meet as being a great step in the right direction, and with him taking over powerlifting watch...I hope he utilizes that medium in a positive manner in order to continue to bring powerlifting in the right direction.

WhateverItTakes
05-09-2010, 04:51 PM
Ideally that sounds fine, but who decides what is "breaking parallel" for example? Like I said, people seem to view this so differently that no matter what standard you settled on, some group would be upset and likely not participate. The other problem is that in the U.S. people like having options. If there is an organization or meet organizer who runs bad meets or has poor judging, people can simply go somewhere else to compete. Then how do you tackle the issue of drug testing? There are people who have very, very strong feelings about this on both sides of the argument. Short of the government forcing powerlifting under one organization, I just don't see it happening.
I like your ideal, but I just don't see anyone with the will, resources, time, and influence to make it happen. I just wonder if everyone's time would be better spent trying to improve the organization they currently lift in.

I totaly agree that there is so much debate over the depth of squats, but I think that stems from the fact that the multiple feds all have their own perception of what depth is. I don't really care what the people on internet forums debate about, that is pointless. The only call that matters is the judges at the meet. That is why, if there is one set fed with one set of rules and the judges are well aware of the rules...then that is what will stand. There will always be disputes over whether a call was right or not, that's the way it is with every sport. As long as the crease of the hips break paralled with the top of the knee then they made depth. And the judge calls it.

But I totally agree, this is a big undertaking to create one unified fed. and it will not happen overnight, but I think if the athletes of the sport begin to talk about it, brain storm about, and take action toward it...then it will come to pass.

SoCoBarbell
05-09-2010, 05:28 PM
Unfortunately I really can't see powerlifting ever getting to the bodybuilding level as far a money is concerned. Our sport has been around for decades and has been on TV before. Have you ever asked yourself What happened? We will always have this rotten core that eats itself away from the inside every time.

The IPF has tried forever to get powerlifting into the olympics and has been unsuccessful every year. I must admit I believe it's because of equipment. I love lifting in gear so I'm not saying that as a negative towards geared lifters. I just feel gear gives the IOC a negative view of powerlifting. So, sorry IPF guys but, I don't see the dream ever becoming reality.

Multi-ply drug users just like bodybuilding and strongman will always get the majority of the attention. They have the freaky lifts that people will go out of their way to see. Ask yourself this. Why would a supplement company sponsor/pay a drug free lifter who squats #800 to represent their product when there's a guy out there squating #1100 making the drug free guy LOOK weak? The general public doesn't care about drugs or equipment. They just like to see freaks. Maybe this is why the majority of drug free lifters are always so pissed off about everything.

If bodybuilding ever outlawed steroids the industry would disappear overnight. Sorry guys but, the bottom line is if it don't make dollars it don't make sense. Supplement companies aren't going to invest in lifters or federations if they aren't going to get a return on their investment. I believe the main reason drug free lifters HATE users so much is because they will never put up the numbers they do. There for, never get the publicity. Remember I'm drug free but, I am a realist and accept things for what they are.

Sorry guys but, the reality is that it's a pipe dream. People have been trying to advance powerlifting for decades. Every time it starts to move forward it gets destroyed from within. We will have ups and downs but, it wont be bodybuilding and it won't be strongman. The best chance is to have a big PRO meet once a year with a decent payday for the winners. Beyond that it's just a pipe dream. Next time you're at the store ask the person at the check out who Louis Simmons is. They'll look at you with no clue. Better yet ask the average person at the gym and you'll get the same clueless stare.

Powerlifting will continue to destroy itself from within. Too many HATERS and not enough people with the ambition to move the sport main stream.

vdizenzo
05-09-2010, 07:14 PM
There is just too much to read there. Powerlifting will continue to be an underground sport. I wish there was one fed, but there never will be. I wish there were not 300 divisions and trophies for every meet.

Regarding strongman, I think it has peaked. They screwed around with the tv this year. They appear to have lost MetRx. I went to the Mohegan Sun show a few weeks ago and there was half the crowd as the year before. There are different organizations with strongman also. These are all fringe sports.

Bodybuilding does well because of supplement sponsorship. Even with bodybuilding there are only a few making big bucks. However, their market with magazines have been established for years.

There have been many who have visions for this sport, I hope they can make it happen. However, there are too many fed presidents making a buck off of it. When the WPO folded, a few of them could have gotten together and did something. Gene Rychlak was even trying to do that. No dice. Too many fed presidents want thier memebership fees.

Also, I have paid thousands upon thousands of dollars over the years to travel, for food, and lodging for myself and my handlers. I have won far less than what I have paid out. I don't care to do it anymore. That's why I'll lift in whatever multi ply fed comes to my neck of the woods.

Suprman1020
05-10-2010, 09:21 AM
I have only competed in one meet so my experience is extremely limited. However, I have been lifting since I was sixteen and I am 30 now. I ALWAYS did (and continue to do) squats, bench and deadlift. I realized that even though I loved bodybuilding, I was always really doing both. Anyway this is how I see it:

If powerlifting is going to become more popular, it either has to: A) Go RAW (with a belt and wraps) or B) HAS to make a GOOD argument for equipment (I'm talking about suits and bench-shirts). Whether you believe benching with a shirt is not cheating, it doesn't matter. What matters (if you want to make powerlifting more popular) is selling the sport to average people and work-out guys. Almost everyone that I have ever shown a youtube video or told them about a bench-shirt, tells me it is cheating. I personally lift RAW but I also have NO problem with shirts. However, the GRAND majority of people who lift weights in whatever capacity do it RAW.

Powerlifting absolutely needs more money to back it up and like others have said, it needs a Joe Weider/Arnold Schwarzenegger. But even if it does it has to do all of the above.

Lastly, even if the foregoing is happens Powerlifting might still be an underground sport. Why? Well, as cool as it may seem for us to see a guy do a single rep with 1000 lbs., most people like watching TEAMS and head to head competition which you do not get in powerlifting.It is always one person at a time on the platform.

chris mason
05-10-2010, 10:22 AM
Posts like this always bring me back to the dollar. I personally like powerlifting. I have sponsored many meets, athletes, and have done quite a bit towards promoting the sport in general, yet powerlifters do not buy AtLarge products in any great quantity. I have said it before, and will say it here, if every powerlifter (well, nearly every :) ) bought his or her supplements from AtLarge we would dump a HUGE amount of money into the sport and would help to unify it. I WANT to be the Joe Weider of powerlifting, but getting powerlifters to spend their money is a conundrum I have yet to figure out.

vdizenzo
05-10-2010, 10:43 AM
If powerlifting is going to become more popular, it either has to: A) Go RAW (with a belt and wraps) or B) HAS to make a GOOD argument for equipment (I'm talking about suits and bench-shirts). Whether you believe benching with a shirt is not cheating, it doesn't matter. What matters (if you want to make powerlifting more popular) is selling the sport to average people and work-out guys. Almost everyone that I have ever shown a youtube video or told them about a bench-shirt, tells me it is cheating. I personally lift RAW but I also have NO problem with shirts. However, the GRAND majority of people who lift weights in whatever capacity do it RAW.

EQUIPMENT has been around this sport for WELL over 30 years. IT'S not going anywhere. I DON'T care what joe average thinks. WHEN Bench AMERICA was on national television, people were wearing bench shirts. They were never even mentioned. I had numerous people who knew nothing ABOUT the sport call me to tell me how cool it was. They NEVER asked about shirts. EQUIPMENT is usually only a big deal because RAW lifters make a big deal of it. By THE way I don't know why I am putting some words in CAPS.

Chris has definitely hit the nail on the head. We need more lifters investing in the companies that sponsor and put money in the sport. Everyone here should be promoting the heck out of ALN and any other company they see giving back to us. Also, with more powerlifters getting concerned with health and a better general overall look, it may help on the supplement end of things. A guy like Kroc going between bb and pl could also be a good draw.

JK1
05-10-2010, 12:52 PM
I really think some of the people out there are missing the point when they start the "powerlifting must be unified" bs and it then degenerates to the geared vs not geared and juicing vs not juicing crap...

I don't ever see powerlifting being a unified sport for a couple of simple reasons, one of which Vinny has already stated. I compete in the federation that has meets in my area. there isn't one single federation that has meets in all 50 states. The financial costs to me (about 500-750/meet on average, time away from work, etc) mean that I will not travel to do meets 4 states away. I'll compete in something that is within about a 5-6 hour drive at most. Anything else isn't worth it.

Until there is a federation that is having meets in multiple states on a regular basis you will not see any form of unification. And, once that occurs, IF that federation has a product that the lifters like, ie lifters go to the meets and they talk positively about the meets and come back to that federations meets when they happen the next year, then you will see a pseudounification of the sport. It will occur through basic capitalism though, not through some holier than thou policy for the love of the sport.

The other thing that needs to quit is the online bashing and bull**** needs to be reigned in. WBB and a couple of other forums do a very good job of moderating it and presenting opinions in an adult discussion, but lets face it.. . forums like the NASA Hate Forum and to a degree PLWatch present a negative image of the sport that those who know nothing about it zero in on. I've had my own family bitch about the online image of powerlifters----I talk about what good friends I have and how good the people I know in the sport are, but then when they try to find online information, they are hit with a barrage of bitching, moaning, and whining about EVERYTHING... .from gear to squat depth to knee wrap length... it goes on and on. And it carries through with an image that nonsportrelated sponsers don't want to have anything to do with.

The final thing that we all need to realize when discussing the "unify" and "mainstream" ideas with this sport is that as powerlifters, we tend to have a much different mentality than the average schmuck off the street. "Fitness" is the way of the modern gym. Many of us would get thrown out of a modern gym the minute we walked up to the curl rack. They advertise an easy solution to everyones problem with some magical training formula or supplement. Powerlifters know that isn't the case. We know you want to get stronger, there is really only one way to do it---keep piling the plates on the bar. It's going to hurt. there will be blood, there will be sweat, there will be pain.... Most people are afraid of that. Its not an acceptable mainstream image to see some guy rip his hands to the point they are bleeding training their deadlift... or to see some guy blow out a biceps, or to shrug off a blown disc..... yet we all laugh about it. Its part of the sport.

You want unification and mainstream acceptance? Then you are going to have to figure out how to change that fundamental mentality. Until then, powerlifting is going to stay where it belongs---underground.

Suprman1020
05-11-2010, 04:18 PM
Vince, stop yelling at me with your CAPS on. lol. Look,the Raw unity meet is very popular and its great seeing people get together and just lift without all the "equipment" that is needed now. If a "UNITY" meet were conducted with everyone wearing gear then it would be great too. Whether people want to lift Equipped or Raw is their business. I respect both because seeing someone with 800-1000 lbs in their hand or on their back is awesome. By the way, without turning this into a question about the validity of equipment, your comparison of equipment 30 years ago to today is like comparing an Abacus to a Computer. I'm not against a shirt giving you some "pop" but that the equipment that existed 30 years ago did not give people 300 lbs. on their bench as there wasn't any "open backed shirts" with multi-ply layering.

Sean S
05-11-2010, 05:01 PM
Vincent is correct in that powerlifters have always used the best equipment available to them at the time. While the equipment certainly has improved light years ahead of the old stuff, people will often still use the best that is available at the time. That isn't likely to change, so any "unity" in powerlifting would have to include equipment in some way.

vdizenzo
05-11-2010, 05:42 PM
Vince, stop yelling at me with your CAPS on. lol. Look,the Raw unity meet is very popular and its great seeing people get together and just lift without all the "equipment" that is needed now. If a "UNITY" meet were conducted with everyone wearing gear then it would be great too. Whether people want to lift Equipped or Raw is their business. I respect both because seeing someone with 800-1000 lbs in their hand or on their back is awesome. By the way, without turning this into a question about the validity of equipment, your comparison of equipment 30 years ago to today is like comparing an Abacus to a Computer. I'm not against a shirt giving you some "pop" but that the equipment that existed 30 years ago did not give people 300 lbs. on their bench as there wasn't any "open backed shirts" with multi-ply layering.

You mentioned cheating in your earlier post. So I guess a little cheating is ok. Think of how much golf clubs have evolved, or the pole for pole vaulting. They used to play baseball without gloves. Sure the equipment has evolved, but the principle is the same, move as much weight as you can. I'd be perfectly happy if gear were never invented. However, that's not the case, so why bitch about it now. We can't stuff the genie back in the bottle.

I am an accomplished raw lifter. There are many out there who get more out of shirts that I do. I am not going to sweat it. I'll just keep doing what I'm doing. I participated in the WPO which was for all intent and purpose a multi-ply unity meet (every multiply lifter wanted to lift in the WPO). If I felt like I had something to prove I would have hit the Raw Unity Meet. It just did not fit in my plans. I respect Eric for what he has done. Perhaps he can do it with multi-ply also.

douglasoh5
05-11-2010, 08:44 PM
IDK if this has already been said cause I didnt fully read every post. but there really isnt a way rite now to get the best together. The enconomy is really messing **** up for lifters. They cant really travel as much as they used to. looks at the pro am the first 2 years. Insane!!! then last year maybe a total of 35 pro lifters showed up. I dont think anyone has a problem with louie and the spf its just they cant afford to travel.