T Nation

Taking the Slack Out of the Bar on DLs

Does anyone have a link that explains this? What I mean is, Andy Bolton will do a sort of pumping motion about 3 times before actually trying to pull the weight off the ground. The reasoning behind this was that it pre-bends the bar before you actually try to lift it, so that it makes the actual lift easier. He uses a Texas DL bar which is 8’ long to get more of this effect than the regular 7’ bar. Am I making any sense? Anyways, I was told I needed to learn how to do this while I’m still at lighter weights.

A Tex bar loaded with a heavy weight will leave the ground a few inches before the weight breaks the ground this is because of the flexibilty and length of the bar.

My take on this is that it will allow you to accelerate the bar those few inches which could translate to an easier/faster break off the ground. I doubt this would make much difference with the load an average gym lifter is capable of, and if it did I don’t know that it would be that noticeable.

[quote]Power GnP wrote:
A Tex bar loaded with a heavy weight will leave the ground a few inches before the weight breaks the ground this is because of the flexibilty and length of the bar.

My take on this is that it will allow you to accelerate the bar those few inches which could translate to an easier/faster break off the ground. I doubt this would make much difference with the load an average gym lifter is capable of, and if it did I don’t know that it would be that noticeable.[/quote]

I’ve heard guys on fortified iron talk about 30-50lb difference with a texas or okie DL bar. Which is just fupping ridiculous.

[quote]Power GnP wrote:
I doubt this would make much difference with the load an average gym lifter is capable of, and if it did I don’t know that it would be that noticeable.[/quote]

Its actually very noticeable. Every time I take an opener at a meet, I end up losing my balance at lockout because of the whip of the bar. I pull with a power bar in training. I actually just bought a TX deadlift bar for that very reason.

To the OP, when you begin your pull you need to pull slowly until the bar breaks the floor then accelerate through to lockout.

[quote]Hanley wrote:
Power GnP wrote:
A Tex bar loaded with a heavy weight will leave the ground a few inches before the weight breaks the ground this is because of the flexibilty and length of the bar.

My take on this is that it will allow you to accelerate the bar those few inches which could translate to an easier/faster break off the ground. I doubt this would make much difference with the load an average gym lifter is capable of, and if it did I don’t know that it would be that noticeable.

I’ve heard guys on fortified iron talk about 30-50lb difference with a texas or okie DL bar. Which is just fupping ridiculous.[/quote]

Yeah, I don’t think this effect is really possible as described to the extent of significant difference in weight lifted. You may get even as much as an inch deflection from bar flex, but probably not much more and I doubt that much. At least until you’re moving a lot of weight (how much would depend on the metal of the bar, but certainly more than several hundred pounds).

Just thinking of it from the standpoint of a physics problem, given the lever is only 7’ or 8’, you still have to overcome the friction of plates moving on the ends of the bar while the bar flexes. The bar isn’t stretching – decompressive changes are nearly impossible without thousands of pounds of stretching force. So bending the bar means something moves. Usually the plates themselves tilt, which means the innermost plates leave the floor first. Maybe that’s the root of the effect, if you want to call it that – that you separate the plates from the floor sequentially. But all of it takes place in a matter of seconds, so I doubt a sizable effect.

In Olympic lifting, the flex of the bar is important and chosen as suits the individual lifter – I don’t argue that the effect exists and even helps. But a proof of the effect such that it made a real difference in weight lifted would be an interesting physics problem.

Any metallurgists here?

I think the pumping motion may be more of a neural activation thing then prebending the bar. Sort of like how some people jump before their lift. Or, (and I say this knowing nothing about vertical jumping) how people pump a few times before doing a standing high jump

[quote] Matt wrote:
Power GnP wrote:
I doubt this would make much difference with the load an average gym lifter is capable of, and if it did I don’t know that it would be that noticeable.

Its actually very noticeable. Every time I take an opener at a meet, I end up losing my balance at lockout because of the whip of the bar. I pull with a power bar in training. I actually just bought a TX deadlift bar for that very reason.

To the OP, when you begin your pull you need to pull slowly until the bar breaks the floor then accelerate through to lockout.[/quote]

Ok, thanks.

At the weight I’m pulling (~300), there’s not much of an issue either way with the bar whip. It appears that this matters only on a TX bar.

[quote]johnnytang24 wrote:
I think the pumping motion may be more of a neural activation thing then prebending the bar. Sort of like how some people jump before their lift. Or, (and I say this knowing nothing about vertical jumping) how people pump a few times before doing a standing high jump[/quote]

Another of my powerlifter friends made that same point. He’s got a degree in kinesiology and works for a PT, so I’m inclined to believe him. Interesting. Does anyone have a link on this?

[quote]PRCalDude wrote:
johnnytang24 wrote:
I think the pumping motion may be more of a neural activation thing then prebending the bar. Sort of like how some people jump before their lift. Or, (and I say this knowing nothing about vertical jumping) how people pump a few times before doing a standing high jump

Another of my powerlifter friends made that same point. He’s got a degree in kinesiology and works for a PT, so I’m inclined to believe him. Interesting. Does anyone have a link on this?[/quote]

Yeah… makes sense. Sure the best way to get pumped for max bench attempts is to do a heavy set of bent over rows before hand because it opens the neural pathways better and makes you stronger.

It should also be noted that Texas Powerbars are not approved in the IPF and a couple other federations so wip or not, I don’t train with one and if its not legal in your federation I would suggest the same.

The Ivanko powerbar is probably the whippiest one that I’ve used and I personally felt it did help me to pull more.

We hae Leoko bars in my gym and those things are beyond stiff. There’s barely any flex with 300+kg on them.

Wouldn’t a bar that bends before you break it off the floor make the lift less “dead” ie you have a longer time to ramp up your force before you take the full load?

[quote]conorh wrote:
Wouldn’t a bar that bends before you break it off the floor make the lift less “dead” ie you have a longer time to ramp up your force before you take the full load?[/quote]

To say it simply, yes.

That’s why many federations are starting to outlaw several bars.