I don't understand these? Shaq doesn't wear little jets on his shoes. Wladimir Klitschko doesn't load his gloves with plaster of paris. What do they do exactly? Lift a bit of the weight for you? What's the point of that? If I invent some doctor octopus style arms and can bench 6000 pounds... what have I accomplished? How did these get started? Maybe I just don't understand what they do exactly.
Are they just protective? I watch the videos of the world records and it looks like they'd need half a ton on the bar just to get the shirt to crease a bit... why not just have everyone bench raw?
I am ridiculously ignorant to the world of powerlifting though