T Nation

How to Progress to Geared Lifting?


ok get ready for a bunch of questions. i am currently lifting raw for all my lifts. i am competing in a geared meet next month but i am lifting raw on everything except squat(i am using knee wraps).

my question is how do i go about progressing to geared lifts. do i buy a squat suit right away? do i use briefs for a period of time and then progress to the suit? how long would i have to use the briefs before i progress to the suit? and which suit is best to begin with? i am a wide stance squatter. not super wide but wide.

also are my lifts high enough raw to progress to the suit? i am at about a 400-425 1rm on my raw squat. and a 475-500 1rm on my dead.


If those #s are legit then you're ready for gear right now. What are you benching and how much do you weigh?

I would start off with a conservatively sized pair of single ply briefs and maybe a Titan F6 depending on your current bench strength. If you are over 300 then that should be fine.

Do you lift with a group of guys that have gear experience? If not, I'd try really hard to find a group. Hit up a local PL meet if you can find one and look at the t-shirts people are wearing. Maybe you'll find a gym that you didn't even know existed. Talk to people. There may be a group of guys that train in a storage unit that you'd never find otherwise. This, in my opinion, is the #1 impediment to most people. They aren't surrounded by people that have the same goals and aspirations. Atmosphere is a powerful thing. Finding the right one can make or break your progress.


x2 on finding experienced lifting partners. I'm lucky enough I got to use hand-me-down gear until we had a better idea of what sizes I need and what tightness I can take, so I didn't have to make a huge investment in the wrong stuff.


i weighed 198.3 this morning. i bench with a pause 275 maybe 285. so i think i need to improve my raw bench to more than that before i start using bench shirts but i think i may be ready for gear when it comes to deadlift and squat. and i am looking for a more powerlifting friendly gym. it is really hard to find someone who likes to lift the way i do.


dont know if you all missed this CRITICAL information. You have not even bought the gear yet? It will probably take at least a week or 2 to get the gear, leaving you 3 weeks at most to prep for the meet. With the week before being more of an opener/rest week depending on how you do it, you essentially have 2 weeks time to get ready.

this is simply not enough time... you are better off getting the gear and either competing completely raw in this meet, or pushing the meet back another 2+ months so you can learn the gear.

i have been training in briefs for about 6mo now and still dont have it down. just recently added a suit and its not even tight. that shit still throws me around like crazy. you need time and practice. dont hurry this, it can lead to trouble b/c you wont possibly know what to be aware of


Yeah, he said he is lifting raw, with wraps.


Also in regards to gear, know what fed youll like to compete in. Now correct me if im wrong USAPL doesnt allow briefs, and any company but inzer or titan, maybe metal? are not allowed to be used so your wraps may be the store bought altus ones. Other than that Steel Nation i believe pretty much nailed it as my geared lifting is minimal.


i read that completely differently.

well, uh... take what i said to heart for future knowledge anyway!


No briefs, we do get to use Metal.


I personally would get the suit first, then if you are in a multiply federation, get the briefs later. A suit + briefs, can be alot of gear for a new lifter.

For shirts, keep it simple. An f6 is a good beginners shirt. I know people who bench a little less then you, getting around 100lbs out of them.

If you are multiply, something like a metal pro squatter is a solid first choice. It only took me about 2 workouts to figure this suit out, maybe I am a fast learner, not sure.


thanks for the responses guys. coolnatedawg yeah im competing in a geared meet but i'm competing raw. its my first meet and i just wanna get one under my belt. i actually have never worn knee wraps until a month ago but the learning curve is pretty short with those and im comfortable with them now. i just know that once i go to this meet im gonna want to compete in the gear too. so im tryin to find out as much as i can now before i go out and buy a suit.


This is a good point. You can always wear the suit with the straps down at first. But you can get a pair of single ply Crain briefs for like $40.