Thoughts on BB vs PL

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  1. #1
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    Thoughts on BB vs PL

    Why are Bodybuilders bigger than Powerlifters? This question seems to keep coming up (IronMag, T-Nation, and of course my news feed) and it always seem to annoy me.

    The biggest problem with people?s perception of BB vs PL is the damn pictures this nonsense starts off with. Seriously people stop comparing images of a heavyset power lifter to a bodybuilder decked out in oil on stage, dried out after weeks of cutting for a show or photo edited to high hell for a magazine shoot. News Flash that bodybuilder DOESN?T look like that 9/10s of the time!

    The perception seems to be that the two sports are mutually exclusive, which couldn?t be further from the truth. The two sports can be wonderfully combined by anyone who enjoys pushing their strength limits, participating in the Big Three, and stepping on the platform. By participating in Powerlifting you stand no danger of getting fat, fluffy, or in any way out of shape. The fact is the strength gains that occur when doing PL are not only rewarding and will put on quality muscle. Plus the assistance/accessory work that we do is sufficiently high volume to support hypertrophy. However, this is NOT to say that this style of training is ideal for when you are 10 weeks out from a show, when you should be focusing on being stage ready and peaking for the stage.

    This brings me to the giant elephant in the room: DIET. Being that PL doesn?t REQUIRE people to ?look good? not all individuals place a large emphasis on diet and how diet can enhance / support their muscle building potential which in turn supports their strength gains?of course following weight class constraints.

    When comparing PL to BB I think we should be a bit more fare and compare OFF SEASON BodyBuilders to Diet-Conscious Power Lifters?. Ohhh that?ll level the playing field. Of course no PL guy is going to look like a BodyBuilder on stage, why would he deplete that much? Makes no sense for the sport. Similarly why would a Bodybuilder focus on strength gains in the big three when (s)he is 10 weeks out from a show? Silly.
    Take a look at some of the Powerlifters that place an emphasis on diet, and tell me they couldn?t be BB stage ready in 15 weeks? Crazy? Look at the crossover athletes that do both BB and PL. They aren?t hard to find.

    Fact is if you have an interest in strength training PL is for you, but you have to keep into perspective your overall goals. Power lifting is great for building size and strength if you have the proper training and diet. If you are ten weeks out from stepping on a bodybuilding stage obviously PL isn?t ideal and training would have to change.

    This isn?t rocket science. This ?us vs them? or ?why are one bigger than the other? is bullshit. Stop comparing the absurd pictures on both sides of the spectrum.


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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckcrown84 View Post
    Why are Bodybuilders bigger than Powerlifters? This question seems to keep coming up (IronMag, T-Nation, and of course my news feed) and it always seem to annoy me.

    The biggest problem with people?s perception of BB vs PL is the damn pictures this nonsense starts off with. Seriously people stop comparing images of a heavyset power lifter to a bodybuilder decked out in oil on stage, dried out after weeks of cutting for a show or photo edited to high hell for a magazine shoot. News Flash that bodybuilder DOESN?T look like that 9/10s of the time!

    A bodybuilder in his/her off season still looks better then a power lifter in his/her off season. Same goes for in season. No comparison period.

    The perception seems to be that the two sports are mutually exclusive, which couldn?t be further from the truth. The two sports can be wonderfully combined by anyone who enjoys pushing their strength limits, participating in the Big Three, and stepping on the platform. By participating in Powerlifting you stand no danger of getting fat, fluffy, or in any way out of shape. The fact is the strength gains that occur when doing PL are not only rewarding and will put on quality muscle. Plus the assistance/accessory work that we do is sufficiently high volume to support hypertrophy. However, this is NOT to say that this style of training is ideal for when you are 10 weeks out from a show, when you should be focusing on being stage ready and peaking for the stage.

    Power lifters and body builders have different methods/techniques in approaching a set(s). Power lifters use pecentages and brute strength. That is where a majority of there energy will be focused in their workout. There reps will typically be lower, in the 1-5 rep range for numerous sets (8-12), usually pryamiding up using percentage or straight iron as their guide. Their workout will usually only contain 2-3 different movements. Most will keep rules in mind when they go through their rep/set as to not expend any more energy then they have to to get a mark. Now on the other hand you have a bodybuilder who will still utilize his/her strength, but concentrate more on the mind & muscle connection with emphasis on the contraction of the focused muscle. A bodybuilder will usually do numerous movements to completely tax the muscle being worked on that day, because they won't hit that same muscle till a week later. Although there are some that will hit a particular muscle twice a week. Bodybuilders will most always have that mind set of being, "stage ready" or pretty damn close to it year round.

    This brings me to the giant elephant in the room: DIET. Being that PL doesn?t REQUIRE people to ?look good? not all individuals place a large emphasis on diet and how diet can enhance / support their muscle building potential which in turn supports their strength gains?of course following weight class constraints.

    Both power lifters and bodybuilders are known to eat in volume. I think it's a kind of a given that most people think power lifters don't really incorporate cardio into their routine. While on the other hand, you have a bodybuilder who will live and die by cardio
    .

    When comparing PL to BB I think we should be a bit more fare and compare OFF SEASON BodyBuilders to Diet-Conscious Power Lifters?. Ohhh that?ll level the playing field. Of course no PL guy is going to look like a BodyBuilder on stage, why would he deplete that much? Makes no sense for the sport. Similarly why would a Bodybuilder focus on strength gains in the big three when (s)he is 10 weeks out from a show? Silly.
    Take a look at some of the Powerlifters that place an emphasis on diet, and tell me they couldn?t be BB stage ready in 15 weeks? Crazy? Look at the crossover athletes that do both BB and PL. They aren?t hard to find.

    Again, there is no comparison to an off season power lifter and bodybuilder, or in season power lifter and bodybuilder. Even if you compared an off season body builder to a "diet conscious" power lifter as you put it, pound for pound the body builder will still be asthetically pleaseing. Ronnie has video of him pulling 800lbs 5 weeks out from the Olympia.

    Fact is if you have an interest in strength training PL is for you, but you have to keep into perspective your overall goals. Power lifting is great for building size and strength if you have the proper training and diet. If you are ten weeks out from stepping on a bodybuilding stage obviously PL isn?t ideal and training would have to change.

    Strength training can be varied in so many ways besides power lifting. Power lifeting is power lifting, no if's, and's, or but's about it. Not everyone will take to power lifting, as most people who hit the gym are their to look better. Looking better can be any where from a begginers weight routine, to a seasoned gym rat who has a clue on what he/she is doing.


    This isn?t rocket science. This ?us vs them? or ?why are one bigger than the other? is bullshit. Stop comparing the absurd pictures on both sides of the spectrum.

    IT WILL ALWAYS BE POWER LIFTER VS. BODYBUILDER. UGLY VS. PRETTY.

    Www.facebook.com/kbrownfitness

    It seems you have quite the bone to pick with people who pull more towards bodybuilding vs. power lifting, or those who compare the two. I know quite a bit of power lifters, and they could care less about the pretty boy over there in the mirror with a tank on. Botom line in my opinion is that, a power lifter will shut down a bodybuilder period. The guys I know don't have that complex of, "I'm better then you...". They are just there to train balls to the wall, and continually improve their total.
    "Gear Up, Tren Hard, Test Your Limits, & Dbolish Your Goals"

  3. #3
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    When I was PLn competitively I was the lean guy before it was the cool thing to be... I like to look good while being strong.

    i don't have the issue of who is better or whatever, they are sports that have the love of iron in comin. I will say PLrs are much more nice to each other then bbrs. if i need some baby powder i can use what right next to me (someone elses) without getting into a altercation about it. Where as bbrs I know will not give you shit you need... If you forgot it to bad kinda way.

    I'm not competing now but I still want to look good doing what I do.

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    I've seen alot of power lifters and strongman tgat look just as good or better than some of the bodybuilders I've seen in off season but tgen u do have probably the majority of powerlifters that have no interest in staying lean or looking decent. I myself like the bodybuilder look better but would rather compete in strongman then powerlifting and last choice would be bodybuilding based on the camaraderie and how everyone respects each other and its more like a family in strongman where when the guy your competing against is right there cheering u on. Anyways I know alot of stronger and powerlifters tgat look just as good or better than a bodybuilder in off season but u do have some who don't give a crap and look unhealthy and just wanna lift big numbers

  5. #5
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    They're different sports. The competitors prioritize different physical qualities in their training.

    The "fat powerlifter" stereotype was driven by people who used pictures of out of shape heavyweight PL to generalize about an entire population of athletes. Of course some PL only care about their numbers and will gain weight any way possible simply because it helps their leverages and allows them to train hard. But plenty of PL compete in lower weight classes and have to monitor what they eat.

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    Nowadays, many people are starting to cross over and do both. Powerlifting has helped bring along the legs of bodybuilders, for sure.

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