So I know a lot of people around here advocate against using a bar pad when squatting. Clearly it makes you look less hardcore as a lifter, but does the bar pad actually make your workout less effective?
I've always felt like the pad is fine, and I'd use the following example. If there were a bench in your gym with no padding, just a flat piece of wood, would you use it for bench pressing? I'd have to think most people wouldn't. If people don't use an unpadded bench, why do they squat with an unpadded bar?