Sunday, August 10, 2014

Pendlay Needle Bearing Bar

The knurl and collar of a Pendlay Nexgen Barbell.
Let me start out by saying; I own an original Pendlay HD bar, I have used the latest versions of the Pendlay Nexgen Bushing bar, I have used York Elite, DHS needle bearing,  Eleiko competition and training bars extensively. I have an expert base of experience when dealing with bars. On any given training day I could encounter a Pendlay bushing or bearing bar, a DHS competition bar, a TKO bar, or a commercial gym bar.

Let's start out with the positives. For the money ($550 USD approx), it is a great bar. No complaints about the spin or the knurling. Some people like center knurling but I don't for training. The whip of the bar is adequate.

The only negative aspect I can complain about is how the shaft can bend. I have bent my second shaft on my Pendlay needle bearing bar in less than 6 months use. 
MDUSA was great in replacing it at no charge, but then soon enough I bent the second one. I thought this was a one off story until I found other complaints on the Pendlay forum similar to mine. I don't do anything crazy, so there is no reason the bar should have bent. My platform is more forgiving than most. And I haven't even attempted PR weights on this bar.  

Bang for your buck, the Pendlay needle bearing bar is a good product. If the manufacture figures out the shaft bending problem it could be a great bar.

So I Did a Powerlifting Meet 100% Raw

Let me start out by saying that I love the 100% Raw powerlifting federation due to the fact they are vehemently against performance enhancing drugs and supportive equipment. I have always liked what this federation was doing so when I heard that they were putting on a somewhat local meet, I knew I had to try it out.

Coming out the hole with a World Record Squat.
The timing with my competitive weightlifting schedule worked out and I was in the area on vacation. It was meant to be. I was after the squat world record, in the law/military/fire 100kg class (225kg), and the national deadlift record in the same category of 248kg. I have done more than these numbers so I was confident to get it done. With 5 weeks to train, after taking 3 weeks off after nationals, I got to work adding bench in for the first time in years. 2 weeks into benching I strained my right pec so benching was out for a couple weeks. Squats and deads were coming along nicely as they were programmed around my Olympic lifting. The week of the comp I was on family holidays, so it was easy to taper. I just changed the one day of training to lower volume back squats and continued normally with my snatches and cleans.

Meet Day
In the hole.
I weigh in with the nice folks at the meet, and was told by a director after the technical meeting, that I would not be lifting until 11am. With that in mind, I go off to have a leisurely omelette at my cousins house. At 10:15 I decide to head back to the meet. As I'm pulling, in I get a text saying I just missed my first squat. Instant adrenaline rush. I run into the warmup room, load 2 plates for a set of 5, 3 plates for 3, 4 plates for 2, 445 for a single then run up the stairs for my opener of 205kg for my official second attempt. I smoked that, and 215kg. Since I was attempting a world record I was given a 4th attempt that would not count towards my official total. I loaded 225.5kg and smoked it. I didn't want to take any chances so I only beat the record by the minimum .5kg. Definitely had more in the tank.

On to bench. My right pec had a strain from trying out bench press in the previous weeks. I kept it light so it wouldn't aggravate it. Embarrassingly, I  started with 105kg, then onto 115kg and a fast 120kg. I just started to feel my pec hurt a bit with 120kg. Glad I didn't go higher.

Bench Press
I had my eye on the 248kg national deadlift record in the law/fire/military category. I started with a conservative 230kg. Then went for the new  national record 248.5kg and smoked it. It was challenging though, so I knew I could not have beaten the world record of 267.5kg. I decided to go for 255kg and break my high school deadlift PR by a couple pounds. Unfortunately my back started losing it's arch half way up my shins so I put it down. Some guys can deadlift with a round lumbar but not me. I strain ligaments and hurt my SI joint thus leaving me unable to lift for a couple weeks. I would rather be safe than sorry.


All in all it was a great meet. I enjoyed lifting in that environment and it was a casual meet for me so I had fun. I also enjoyed how easy it was for me to warm up for a power meet compare to an Olympic weightlifting meet. I did not make 1 PR but it was my first official PL meet, so some will say all the lifts are PR's. Official total-583.5kg, unofficial total (including the 4th squat)-594kg. Next time I will smoke 600kg for sure!