Why Don't They Look Strong?
Tim Bruner remarks that most powerlifters today don't look strong like the powerlifters of old. He argues that it's because of lax rules enforcement. He touches on, but then dismisses, equipment as a possible primary cause.
Where have all the "POWER" lifters gone? For example, Gamble,Cash, Ausby, Coan, Kaz, Wilson, Young, Reinhart,Thomas, Bradley, and so on? What have all these guys have in common? MUSCLE! Todays lifter with the exception of a few and I mean very few have the "look" and muscle that the true giants of yester year have.
Before most of you get a bright idea and start calling me names let me tell you in advance...SHUT YOUR PIEHOLES!
I was there 25 years ago and I am here today! I have seen the best and now I am seeing the rest! Why is powerlifting a JOKE by the public, because when a guy today benches 500 or 900 one would expect to see a pretty strong looking guy but today when one of these so called "power" lifters mingle with the crowds then the first thing a person says is, what the hell, he is a fat bastard! or he has no muscle at all! Better yet I am bigger than him!
At this very instance the public discounts the lift as legit! Then they start making jokes about the sport! I was at a APF meet and saw kids(15 years) doing 500 squat and bench 300 etc and when they changed into street clothes they still had layers of baby fat with no sort of muscle at all. Then at the same meet guys who were 250 plus who looked like they never touched a weight yet moved some heavy pounds.
How does this happen? Simple the rules were so bad that the general lifting pool has bought into the the idea that we should start doing 1/4 squats and bounce bench, etc SHUT THE HELL up! Everyone of you know this is true and you all are stupid for going along with it just to "UP" your lifts! ALL of you know it and should be ashamed of yourselfs.
Look, don't use "its the gear" crap, its the cheating and phoney rules that is the problem! Lets be true and instead of making the rules easier, just so you can come close to the great lifters, make the rules harder! I know many of you are not strong at all and so that will be the end of your game!
Just like the MASTERS, they made the course harder and longer, because of the new clubs and balls. SO I say lets make the squats go deeper(past 1/2 squat) and pause 2 or 3 secs instaed of bounce...its really simple Lets stay in tune with the times and loose the ego and stop with all the bogus lifts.
Others suggest that there are many powerlifters who look the part as well as pointing to equipment, not rules, as the primary culprit to Bruner's observation:
I agree! But, take the bench shirts away and we will see who the best of the best is! These shirts now a days gives up to 300lbs more. If you talk crap, to this post, we know you count on that shirt. That makes you a world champ!
Its more like steroids were easier to get and there wasn't much testing back in the day. Now lifters have to count on a bench shirt for strength! TAKE IT OFF!!! DO YOU NEED IT! OR ARE YOU NOT STRONG
From your list I think there are definitely comparable physiques in today's version of powerlifting. I do agree though that there's LOTS of guys out there that don't LOOK like they can do what they do. Course it's not about the look but the DO so does it really matter?
But to name a few that certainly have the old school "look": Frank, Bolton, Kennelly, Chuck V., Mendy, Dirty Harry, Chabot (granted, not competing anymore), Ladnier, Andy Fiedler, Mike Miller, Arnold Coleman, Ruggerio, Halbert, Matt Smith...
Since you took off after your Texas Powerlifting Hall of Fame duties at the meet Tim, you missed the deadlifts. I haven't seen the results yet so I don't have exact numbers but, there were alot of squats attempted above 700, a few above 800, a handful of 900+ attempts, and one 1000 squat. The guy that did the 1000 pound squat gets a pass because he tore his bicep. Of those big squatters, do you know how many 700+ deadlifts there were? There was 1 successful attempt at over 700 pounds. And that guy didn't even squat 700!
Now then, a 700+ pull is a big pull. But with guys squatting 200-300 pounds more than they pulled, you would think there would be more big deadlifts. I know that there is gonna be descrepencies between squats and deadlifts. People are sometimes just built better to squat than deadlift and vice versa. But still a 275'er who can squat a high 8 or low 9 should be able to muscle up 7!
Easy answer. You can buy 150-200lbs in your squat and bench with new equipment. It's roughly $1.00 per LB. The DL you have to actually work for. The days are gone when you see someone like Dave Pasanella routinely in the gym do reps with over a 900 in the squat and pull 750 for 5 and do stiff legged 650 for 5 in the same week and look like Hercules. It is too easy now adays to increase your squat and bench by over 100 pounds in just one phone call. There are a few guys out there who still train every lift hard raw and equipped. You yourself are one of those. Probably not quite as much fast food back in yesteryear either. There are still some guys out there today who train hard and look hard. Not fuel for an arguement, just my perspective.
Tim, I understand what you're trying to say, but have to disagree with some of it:
1. Look at guys like Ryan Kennelly and Billy Carpenter. Strong and ripped. There are probably others, but I don't know all the bodies, only the names. Garry Frank looks pretty strong to me.
2. Guys like Mendy, Meeker, Siders, Wolfe, Lattimer, Miller, Brandeburg - all have realized that gaining weight helps them move more weight. (Except for Meeker - he stays at 308 and just gets better!)
I have gone from 440 to 360 and have become stronger, As far as the deadlift goes I spent many years trying to emulate everyone elses technique and it did not woork for me so I lost weight started working my lower back, and despite what many say I have found that just because you have a big squat does not mean you will have a big deadlift at least not in my case. I started lifteing 50 gal drums with wheel weights. My deadlift has improved drasticly although my technique somewhat unconventional works for me. Tim I would agree with you in that people are way to eager to jump into gear I train people all the time and they just don't want to put forth the effort but I think this relates to a society as whole we would rather take a pill than do the work. The strongmen of today in my opinion no way compair to those of old. I have a gentleman who lives down the road from me who is in his 80's and in his prime at york deadlifted 500 at 135 raw. he can still do one arm chin ups. I think there are tons of great and strong lifters out there. scott rowe, brad vargison, jeff Mc Vcar and brian weston all look like they could go onto a body building platform and all have the heart of a lion. I used to think I worked out hard until last year when I started strongman....Tim I would say one more thing I am all for the rules and I will compete in anyway my federation wants, raw equiped etc. but lets not be to hard on everyone I have seen some strong raw guy out there I have seen bobby field do dips with 300 lbs I have seen one of my new guys squat 600 in the bucket raw after 6 mts of training I at 360 lab have done 39 dips and 10 pullups, I have walked a 900 lb yolk look at Josh bryant from what I have been told the kid is an animal. I do think we need to get the young kids a solid foundation as well as new people who come into the sport.
Joe Mazza have seen him do 315 for reps like it was 135as well as dipp well ove 100 lbs. booby fields built like a bick shit house have seen him do 530 for 3 raw. Bill Crawfor have seen him do 500 plus raw, Phill harrrington, anther well built guy, Joe Ladnier, sorry if I screwed up the last name.
I agree alot with what you said Tim, it's one of the main reasons I started to cut weight I wanted to be strong and look strong as well, but not everyone is like that or has the genetics. As far as rule go they need to be uniformed and you need judges who are fair and don't play politics or have favorites...best of luk finding 3 of them and putting them in the same room...
Mikeyou forgot Billy Carpenter. He reps 500 like its nothing and is built like a greek god. I can also hold my own week after week! Jeff McVicar is a nother guy built like a greek god that is strong as hell! Brad Hein, Aaron Wilson, Jim Grandick, Nick Hatch the list goes on and on!