T Nation

How To Train For A Suited Deadlift In Comp?


So I plan on competing in USS Nationals this year and they allow a suit on the deadlift. I’ve seen a lot of people train raw up until competition and then suit up for the deadlift. This would be my first time touching a suit and was wondering if I should run my deadlift training in prep with it.


Train how you compete. You may not want to do your entire prep in it though, how far away is your comp?


June 8th so about 12+ Weeks. My official prep starts about 12 weeks out though and for deadlifts it’s not in blocks like everything else in my training. So it’d be suit straight through or no suit until comp.


You do NOT want the comp to be the first time you put on a suit. Breaking it in – single ply or multi-ply – takes time, and getting used to it takes even more time. Is your suit single or multi-ply?

I use a multi-ply suit (Metal Jack). I’ve done it where I train raw until 8 weeks out, then throw the suit on for one of my two deadlift sessions per week. One session I’ll still train raw in the 5-6 rep range, and then on the second day, train in the suit with heavy triples.

If you only deadlift once per week, I’d still train raw until 8 weeks out, and throw your suit on for a few top sets before doing raw work. Training WITH the suit not only helps you break it in/get comfortable, but also preps your back for the heavier load that your legs suddenly can break off the floor.



oh fuuuuuuck. that’s 1 week before static monsters in Australia… sounds like I’m gonna have some decisions to make.

wait what? why? that doesn’t make any sense. you definitely need some practice in a suit, and you definitely DON’T need 12 weeks. You need to be a little more flexible. Are you working with a coach?

so, he didn’t mention this, but nationals will be a max-rep event. The weight will (hopefully) be something he can handle without the suit.

Brett: If you’ve never worn a suit before, the most difficult thing will be learning how to make use of it in the first place. And it will be relatively difficult to do this in a max rep event, because breathing can be such an issue. I agree that about 8 weeks out is when you should first start trying to get some reps in with the suit. You’ll need to get enough sessions in for you to ‘figure the suit out’. Once you’ve figured out how to make use of the pop you get from the suit, you’re going to want to practice some all out sets with it. You need practice lifting for 1 minute without dying. I would want to get at least 4 sessions in between now and comp where you practice the event exactly as prescribed. Contest weight, contest time, with a suit on.

There’s a chance that the suit will not benefit you, depending on how heavy contest weight is for you. I doubt this is the case, but if you’re looking at… lets say 15+ reps on the event, you MAY be better off without it. If you’re under that, the suit will probably provide some benefit.

EDIT: oh, and June 8th is 20 weeks away, not 12. Stay in school kid.


Thanks Flip. I guess I wasn’t thinking enough about my programming and just said I couldn’t train raw then figure the suit out around the comp.
Also thanks for all the insight into how the suit could either help or hinder me. Appreciate it man.