The other day, while taking a rest between sets of Pendlays, I was just absentmindedly gazing around the gym, not focusing on anything, and accidentally noticed a girl squatting in a Smith with just one 5 kg (11 lbs) plate on the right side of the barbell – the other end of the barbell being empty.
From my previous experience, I know that sometimes when, for example, overly tired and unfocused, one might load the bar unevenly without noticing it (I myself have accidentally mixed 5 and 2.5 kg plates on squats once or twice). So I decided to pay her attention to this fact – in case she also hasn’t noticed it (cause, I guess, it is somewhat easier to not notice a slight asymmetry in loads in the Smith than with free weights). I politely excused myself, said that I have noticed that her bar was loaded unevenly, and just wanted to pay her attention to that – just in case she hasn’t noticed it.
And the girl started explaining me something: that it was exactly how she wanted it; that since she was doing it in the Smith, the load distribution is different (??? I honestly didn’t get that part); etc.
So I just said: Sorry again, just wanted to pay your attention – so you don’t injure yourself. But I know, it is not any of my business.
And went away.
I guess it really was not my business, to start with: may the people in the gym be doing whatever and however they want. I acted as a smartass – exactly the way I myself hate people behaving in the gym :)) So, shame on me
But since that day on I cannot find peace :)) I have googled “purposes of uneven barbell loading on squats” – cause I became immensely curious why someone would think of doing it or why someone would advise to do it: for physical therapy? rehabilitation purposes? to fix some muscle imbalances? Cause, judging by the way the girl was squatting, she was not quite experienced in what she was doing – and I really think that she has not made it up herself.
Maybe you have some ideas: what are the purposes of unevenly loaded barbell squats (whether in Smith or free).
(P.S. I am a girl myself, and my purpose was not to hit on a lady in a gym I was just genuinely a bit worried for her, although I know that an empty bar (in a Smith!) with a 5 kg plate is not smth you can possibly injure yourself with.)