T Nation

Beginning Powerlifting Standards

What would you consider to be “entry standards” for someone who wanted to get into powerlifting? I mean, minimum weights, certain number of dips/pullups, or is it more “Just go fucking do it”?

just do it. once you’ve done a meet you’ll have a better sense of where your strength ranks and you can use that for motivation to set new goals. every local meet has a good number of newbies. no shame in being a beginner. everyone has been there.

Yup just do it and get better

NO MATTER WHAT!!! theres always someone stronger just the nature of the beast. aim to get better then you every time you hit the gym and youll be golden


I agree with the idea of just doing it, especially if you are trying to compete with yourself. People have different reasons for competing. I will say that most people that do a powerlifting competition can usually do double bodyweight squat and deadlift and 1.5x bodyweight bench press. Or if you want basic numbers 405+ squat and dead, and 275+ bench. Of course many, many things affect this like gear, bodyweight, etc. If you are younger like a teen those numbers will be lower.

Still, though, even if you are in last place I always say last place beats everyone that didn’t compete and powerlifters generally cheer everybody on, from the best lifter to the newbie just getting his/her feet wet. If you are really nervous about competing go watch a meet and check it out. Good luck with it, it is very contagious once you get into it.

I just had my first meet in 6 years on Saturday. It was a novice meet and a good place to start. I have been training for about 5 months (for powerlifting) and for this meet for 7 weeks. It really didn’t matter what you could lift, everyone was supportive of each other and it was a great atmosphere. I agree, do a meet and take it from there.

Brant - The only suggestion I might add is, find a meet and be a spectator one time. That will give you some idea of what to expect when you do your first meet. Then, sign up for a meet, train, and do it.


I competed in my first meet after 6 months of lifting…not powerlifting, but just started lifting. Lots of people wont compete until they can do so much weight or feel they can win. Find a meet, enter and have fun. Find another meet, train hard, have fun and set PR’s. REPEAT!