EP.92 | 3 More Ways to NOT Drop a Bar

Oh wait, there's more!

As noted previously in Bar Tip Tuesday Episode #78, there are specific instances in which you should NOT drop a barbell.  

This week we are going to give you THREE MORE scenarios in which you shouldn't drop your bar(s).  Although these are more specific, they are definitely worth noting!!  Let's dive in.


No. 1 Rack Pull Drops

Familiar with rack pulls?  Lifters utilize rack pulls to work on various stages of the deadlift to push their overall number up.  One of the ways you can set up for rack pulls is in a power rack.  Usually there are pins on the inside or arms that extend out from the uprights.

The downside...

One of the downsides of doing rack pulls in a power rack, for instance, is that people typically let the bar come crashing down on the pins or arms.  What's this do?  Let's hear from IVANKO:

"When a bar falls and hits a small area, like pins through a power rack, it might only have 400 pounds on the bar but if it drops 3 feet and hits that pin, perhaps the blow is equal to 5,000 or 10,000 pounds.  This is the way almost all bars are bent."

Tom I. Lincir, President

So what's the alternative?

You have a few options.  An inexpensive way to do rack pulls would be to set up either bumper plates or shorter boxes on each side to raise the bar off the ground.  With the box you just need to be careful dropping because you don't want to end up with a cracked box.

If you insist on using a power rack...

If you are dead-set on a power rack, an easy way to less the impact is to ride the bar back down to the pins.  Meaning, don't let the bar go at your thighs and let it smash into the pins/arms.  

No. 2 Jerk Block Drops

Dropping from jerk blocks will be more applicable to the Olympic Weightlifting crowd.  Whether you are doing a push/split jerk, a snatch, or a clean, you run the risk of the bar hitting directly on the blocks.  It sounds silly, but it more than likely will happen at some point with you or a lifting partner.

Take the split jerk for example.  You warm up, start to add a little bit of weight, and then you work up to some heavier numbers.  The margin of error narrows and dropping with precision becomes more imperative.

You add 20 more pounds, catch the bar in the split slightly off balance to the right, and try to regain your balance to finish the lift.  Unfortunately it takes you too far to the right and you have to bail.  Do you have a similar story?  Maybe you lost the bar behind you?

To summarize for you, the sleeve and/or the shaft of the bar made direct contact with the boxes.  What are you left with?  A bent barbell.  How much weight that was on the bar will play a significant factor in how bent your bar is.

Not trying to steer you away from jerk blocks!

We ARE NOT saying to eliminate blocks from your training.  All we are saying is to be mindful of this scenario just in case.  When using the blocks just be smart! 

No. 3 Box Squat Drops

I've personally witnessed a bar bending from someone bailing on a back squat.  AKA the let the bar fall of their back and the middle of the bar made direct contact with the box.

Pretty self-explanatory here... DO NOT let the bar roll off your back!  GRAB A SPOTTER!!  

Wrapping it up

To be clear, we aren't discouraging people from using power racks, jerk blocks or doing box squats.  We are simply shining the spotlight on these three to help you keep your gym equipment in top-working condition.  

We want you to get the MOST out of your gym's equipment! 


Increase the longevity of your barbells

Prevent Rust
Restore/Maintain Spin