Tips for Your 1st Powerlifting Meet

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Its finally meet day! You’re probably a nervous wreck. Your eye is on the prize and thats all you can think about…. Well unfortunately, to win, you need to be able to think. Here is a run down for each list of things you need to do, small tips that could help big time.



Have some stimulants but not too much, you have a full day ahead of you.

Its warm up time, you don’t want to start warming up too early or too late. Look and see how far down the list you are and plan accordingly. If you squat 200lbs and you’re first on the list, you need to start probably 30 minutes before show time.

If you aren’t in the first flight, its usually a good idea to start warming up when the 2nd round of the flight before you begins.

Take the same warm ups you do in training. Changing rituals during a meet is just plain stupid.

Chalk or deodorize your knees before wrapping. This helps them stay in place and not slide around as bad.  When your knee wrap slides out of place, hows it going to give you the same amount of support?

Find someone to wrap your knees. Pay them if you have to. Your deadlift grip will thank you.

If you wrap your knees, start when they announce that the weight is loaded for the person before you.  If you wrap too early, you’re going to be numb; if you wrap too late, you’re going to time out.

Have someone chalk your upper back WHILE you are having your knees wrapped. No point in wasting time.

When you’re waiting for the next round SIT DOWN. I have made the mistake of being a little overactive during meets before and you will pay the price later on.

Now you’re ready to squat….

Between lifts, Listen to relaxing music. You don’t need to be a raging bull all day, just lift time. SAVE IT for when you need it.



Have a designated hand off man from the get-go. Again, pay him if you have to. You’ll want this person to do all of your hand offs during warm ups. You have to learn how each other works so you don’t get a surprise that may mess you up on the platform.

Try to warm up on the same kind of bench you’ll be using on the platform. I absolutely hate when meet directors have different benches, its unprofessional but something we have to deal with from time to time. You want the same bench because each of them feel different. I know I am a princess but going from one style of pad to the next may throw you off.

Spray some stickum on the bottoms of your shoes. This isn’t vital but it may help. Not all stages have good grip so why chance it? Im not going to lose a good lift because my foot slipped on a crappy platform.

Chalk your upper back again. This will help keep you from sliding on the bench.

If you get stuck at lockout, twist your elbows. This can sometimes give the illusion that its locked out and sometimes can actually help you finish the lift.

Eat immediately after so your food as time to settle before deadlifts.



Load up on your stimulants now. Its the end of the day and you have nothing to lose.

Crank up the headphones and find your angry place. Deadlift is 50% strength and 50% aggression.

BABY POWDER THOSE LEGS. Don’t get stuck on your sweaty legs and miss a PR attempt due to negligence on your part. Put a towel over your feet while you apply so you don’t get it on the bottoms of your shoes.

Also, baby powder the insides of your arms. They can get stuck too.

Roll your singlet up, again, don’t get stuck.


While none of these are super secret, they are easily forgotten throughout the day. If you’re new, its even more likely.



The meet day check list.

Every meet is seems like I forget some vital pieces or someone is hitting me up for something at the meet. So why not make a check list of whats important? Check this stuff off a few days before the meet. Its important to pack a few days before hand just to get rid of that little bit of extra stress it can cause.


____ Singlet

____ Underwear (no boxers, boxer briefs or bras with an underwire)

____Squat Shoes

____ Knee sleeves and/or Wraps


____Wrist Wraps

____ Deadlift socks

____ Deadlift shoes or Slippers

____ Towel(s)

____ Sandwiches

____ Bananas

____ Hydration drinks (Gatorade or Pedialyte)

____ Mobility tools (Roller, Lax Ball, etc)

____ Deodorant

____ Baby Powder (for you legs on deadlift)


____ Ibuprofin or Tylenol

____ Cash  (not a debit or credit card)

____ Headphones

____ Stickum spray


I think thats about it.

– You’re asking why cash? Ive not been to hardly any meets where anything but cash was accepted. Don’t get stuck at the meet wanting some extra food or drink and not being able to get it when you need it.

Corey Hayes is an up and comer to the strength and conditioning world. He is currenty a student at Eastern Kentucky University and a Professional level powerlifter. His best meet lifts are 725/425/675 at 220 raw and 880/640/680 at 242 geared. He has future plans of taking over the world and making a living doing what he enjoys, the iron game.

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