T Nation

POLL: Spotter?


I've been doing mainly dumbbell presses for my chest for the past 2 years. Originally the main reason I started doing dumbbells over barbells was cause I wanted a change.. having done barbell for most my life. But then it became necessity, because after I graduated from college and moved to Boston for a job, I no longer had a lifting partner (spotter).

I really want to start doing barbell work again for chest. How many of you guys do barbell work without spotters? I am personally quite scared to do that but given that most of the training philsophies on this board center around "not training to complete failure" it seems more feasible. (I used to always train every set to failure so I always needed a spot. This is no longer true.)


Is there no one working out where you do that can give you a spot?


I do I usally work out incline with 255 four stes of 8 if I need a spotter I usally ask the dude at the front desk he's only sitting on his ass. But i feel your pain I used to have a partner but he got lame and I kicked him to the curb now all alone.


I never use a spotter unless I am going for a PR. I've never done a weight that I can't get at least 2 solid reps in on my own, either.


Ko and I spot each other. Besides the "being there" for the PR's, it's to provide each other another eye on form and for the mental boost.


spotters in most cases are utilized for the mental boost, not so much for safety imo.

assuming you have a power rack, a spotter (for safety) is never needed.


Use a cage. No spotter required.


My wife and I work out in our basement. Its a great workout for her...running from side to side pulling plates off the bar haha. Which is why we are anxious for our new EFS power rack to arrive, no more death struggles! (Though getting stuck is good for that max effort strain)


I am with the others on asking for a spot, but I know how hard that can be sometimes, not that I am against them, but I work out in a gym filled with Gays, and to be honest I dont trust any of thsoe guys to spot me, so I just use weight I know I can get off my chest, plus I try not to go too heavy to wear I know I can get it at least once, just push yourself as hasd as you can but not to the point where you might not get the rep, be smart...


Sometimes having a spotter helps so much though. Like I'd go without a spotter and do 5 reps but with a spotter (since I have no fear of dying) I can do 3 to 4 extra reps that I never thought I could even push out.

I guess I'll just start asking for spots but yeah.. my gym is similarly full of people who don't seem like they could really do anything except stand there and look like they know what they're doing.

Using power racks seems like a good idea too although I feel as though it woudln't give me the complete range of motion I want since it's doubtful that one of the pin holes will be right at the height where I can let the bar touch my chest if I want while still protecting me from death.


For bench I consider a spotter essential. When work sets go over 300lbs the field is pretty narrow in that not a lot of people could get the weight off you if something were to go wrong. Besides, too many times in the past I've had inexperienced spotters grabbing the damn thing if I slow down.

If I don't have a my partner I workout in a rack or better yet - at home where I have self spotting equipment.


I kinda agree with Jared here.....can't you just ask someone who happens to be there to give ya a spot??

Personally, I would LOVE to have a partner, but unfortunately not many people train the same way I do. I don't talk in between sets...I don't chat with other people, I don't look at magazines.....I TRAIN. So the few people who have done a workout with me, usually don't last long. In any case, the only lifts where I ask for a spotter is bench sometimes and squats. But in all honesty, if you have a power rack available...you can lift as heavy as you want and not have to worry about a spotter.


I'll roll the bar off me before I trust most of the people in the gym I lift at to spot me.


VERY rarely. Since I almost always have 1 rep left in the tank, I don't need one.