I don’t have nearly the experience that Brian does, but one comparison that I can easily make is Metal bench shirts to the SDP.
I wore a couple different Metal shirts, the Bash in both single and double ply and an Ace. I really had a hell of a time with these, struggled to make them work at all. I actually had to abandon the 2-ply Bash during the training cycle that I using it in and go to a single ply. There was no way I was going to get one in at the meet. I was also training with former WPO pro Chris Mason at the time so I had a good teacher. We just couldn’t make it work. Lot of dumps and a heck of a 2 board shirt.
The SDP has been a completely different experience. 2 meets, 6 successful benches and I am continuously going down in sizes to get tighter and tighter shirts. The SDP is just so forgiving, the groove is wide and flexible, allowing you a much larger margin for error. I’m a 500 pound raw bencher and in my second meet in an SDP I benched 700. Not too bad! +200 pounds and 6/6. I really don’t think the SDP can be beat.
Also- ditto to Brian’s comments on the LUP. I wore a Metal Pro Squatter years ago. Tight poly suit, took 30+ minutes to put on and about the same to get off. The LUP is so freaking easy to get off and on. The strings make it a very versatile suit. Generally, I think canvas would be reserved for experienced lifters, but the LUP changes that completely. Buy one suit and tighten it as your abilities let you. A beginner could definitely start in one and be able to use it all the way to the highest levels even if they go up a weight class or two.
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Dan Dalenberg is a pro level raw and equipped powerlifter with elite totals in the 220, 242 and 275 class. Best official raw meet lifts include an 804 squat, 507 bench press, 715 dead lift and 2006 total. Best equipped lifts include an 950 squat, 715 bench, 735 deadlift and 2400 total at 242.
Dan has been training under Brian's guidance using the 10/20/Life methodology since late 2010.