Powerlifting offers a vast number of physical benefits (not to mention the mental satisfaction you’ll get from working out and becoming stronger), but knowledge is key. Running head first into new hobbies, sports, or interests might seem like a good idea, but in powerlifting, you’re liable to do some damage to yourself. We recommend finding someone willing to work with you to share the proper forms required for safe powerlifting and help you set achievable goals. Then, make sure you get a hold of these four vital pieces of powerlifting gear.
- Knee sleeves: The main purpose of knee sleeves is to protect the knees for future injuries. Essentially, they provide compression which increases blood flow and reduces swelling in the joint during and after a workout. As a result, you’re able to recover quicker and perform better on a day-to-day basis.
- Powerlifting wrist wraps: The very nature of powerlifting, as described by its name, involved the maneuvering of exceptionally heavy weights. Wrist wraps provide support to your wrist joints during such movements (like presses or overhead lifts). Since injury is quite easy with such a heavy load, wrist wraps make sure your joint isn’t pulled into excessive extension under it.
- Weight lifting belt: It’s important to remember that powerlifting or doing deadlifts forces your body to experience a lot more strain that it’s used to, so keeping proper form is essential to your continued bodily safety. Weightlifting belts can help you keep that form by reminding you to keep your spine in the correct position, while also helping you maintain abdominal pressure (which stabilizes the spine during heavy lifts).
- Knee wraps: These are absolutely different from knee sleeves in that they act more like wrist wraps — by supporting the joint through reducing stress and pulling forces on the quadricep tendon, you are able to lift heavier weights (and perform faster) during squats.
There is plenty of powerlifting gear out there, including squat suits and deadlift socks, but we figured we’d leave you with the basics. Considering the fact that a recent study discovered that lifting weights can reduce death from any cause by 31%, it’s time for you to get out there; just be smart about it and get all the tools and information you need first.