Pros and cons of working with a training partner.

When people come into the gym I work at during the day, I often encourage them to find/bring a training partner.  This one simple thing has many benefits for people who exercise recreationally or just train hard.  Just some of these benefits include:

  • Increased enjoyment leading to increased frequency of training.
  • Increased enjoyment leading to increased consistency in training.
  • When you are not in the mood, they can get you going, so you don’t “fall off the wagon”.
  • Encouraging each other to new personal bests (PB’s), and to try just that little bit harder.
  • Checking the form of one another, keeping your standards high.
It's all you bro!  It's all you!

“It’s all you bro! It’s all you!” Spotters should only touch the bar to pass to/from the exerciser, or if there is danger of injury.

But I have noticed a few bad things that can come with a training partner also.  Try to avoid these whenever possible:

  • It can change from a training session into a social chat, so neither of you end up doing any work.
  • You and your partner have totally different goals, and you both end up compromising each others workouts in an attempt to stick together.
  • Neither of you know what you are doing, so you pass bad habits onto each other.
  • You are halfway through your resistance set, and your partner “helps” you move the bar.

This last point is particularly bugging me at the moment.

A spotter/partner should not touch the weight unless you are in imminent danger.

I am currently seeing way too many young lads “spotting” their mates, by physically helping them move the weight from the start of the set!  If you need help from the start of the set, you are using too much weight.  Put your ego in check and reduce the weight on the bar.

The set ends the second someone else touches the weight.

So definitely use a training partner (I’m rubbish without one).  Especially if you find motivation a problem.  But avoid the few pitfalls that can come with them. As always, if you need help with your training, just contact me and maybe I can help.