Jonathan Byrd

Let's Make Some Changes

Jonathan Byrd
Let's Make Some Changes

I truly love the sport of powerlifting, and the whole goal of this website is to help grow, shape, and mold the sport. After twenty years of in this sport, I have seen a lot of things come and go. I have seen countless federations pop up, and then fall to the side. I have seen promises of big money meets that never happen and was even around during the time of the big money checks bouncing. The following is an unedited list in no real order of things I would love to see happen in powerlifting.

1.       Limit the divisions to Teenage, Open, and Masters. If a person would like to enter a smaller subcategory they can do so after they enter one of the main three. This will create more competition overall, and allow some of you to get that submasters world record that only you and your mother care about.


2.       Everyone use the monolift. I actually don’t care about the walk out, if that’s what you like then go for it. I just really like the use of safety straps for lifter safety.


3.       More depth at the bigger meets. I realize that travel can be expensive, and this is a hobby for most. I simply miss the days of several people in a weight class, and really finding out who is the best lifter.


4.       Less facebook powerlifting groups. Ever spend any time in some of those? The advice that is thrown around in there will make your head spin. I feel bad for the young lifters who read some of that stuff and think that’s what training should look like.


5.       Lifters competing in multiple styles of lifting. Vlad, Andre, Lillebridge, have all lifted equipped at some point. Sam Byrd maybe the best squatter in history, started as an equipped lifter. I enjoy having seen all of those guys cross over to raw lifting, and would like to see some raw lifters cross over to equipped.


6.       More consistency in judging. I am not a hard ass about depth, but some of this stuff has gotten out of hand. Please don’t mistake it though, its not limited to raw or equipped. It is also not limited to any one federation. It also isn’t a new thing, it’s just more widely seen now due to cell phones and the internet. So how do we fix that? The power is in your hands as lifters, where you spend your money will thrive, where you don’t will fall by the wayside.


7.       Age formulas. Why is that even a thing? I understand needing bodyweight formulas for best overall lifter, but now we are doing it with age? There is no where near enough data to make a realistic formula for this.


8.       Matching equipment in the warm up room and platform. Is that too much to ask? That doesn’t seem like a complicated concept at all.


9.       Blind federation loyalty. With out a doubt, some federations are ran much better than others. The real truth is that a meet promoter makes or breaks a meet, not the federation.


10.   Less online coaching and more training partners. As an online coach I realize that this could hurt my business, but I don’t really care. You want to put pounds on your total? Get with an experienced group of lifters.


Yeah I get it, I am like the old grouchy uncle who talks about the good old days. The thing is, these were the same issues we were facing 20 years ago. The depth of classes were better, but honestly that was due to the limited number of federations. The quality of lifters today is far beyond what it was 20 years ago. I would just love to see them all on one platform again, going head to head to prove who is the best. I want to see the best in the world have the best of conditions and equipment to put up the biggest numbers as possible.