Over the past weekend we had 15 athletes compete at OPEN provincials. 3 bench only and 13 full meet. The illustration above gives a representation of all the attempts completed.
Now what did we learn? One of the biggest things that stands out is the discrepancy between Bench and Deadlift attempts. With Squat attempts successful coming in at 91.67%, Bench and Deadlift sitting at 82.22% and 77.78% respectively.
Why is this? One issue that is consistently seen with Bench attempts is athlete's believing their ability in making consistent 5kg+ jumps and not factoring in the sensitivity of the Bench press to increasing load’s. Specifically on thirds, unless the first two attempts were performed with significant speed and a minimal form deterioration, there isn't a reason to be making more than a 2.5kg jump if the goal is to go 9/9 on the day.
Deadlift attempt misses can be caused by targeted placings, this usually calls for reaching beyond preserved ability of the athlete creating higher chance of missing a lift.
One influence that can be overlooked is an athletes perception of their ability and how the competition has progressed so far. For example, if squats were not to go as planned or to the degree that the specific athlete believed there ability was capable of. The chances were higher that they would miss a lift on Bench or Deadlift throughout the rest of the meet.
How do we apply this information? Having specific goals set out for the competition is critical to being able to execute under all circumstances that may come into play. Weather the goal is to go 9/9, hit certain Pr’s on specific lifts, make a certain placing, or a combination, it is important to have these discussions with your meet day coach so that they can make the best decisions possible for your goals on that day.