Impact of Spotter Sex on One Repetition Maximum Bench Press Performance.J Strength Cond Res. 2021 Sep 01; 35(9):2397-2400.JS
Nickerson, BS, Salinas, G, Garza, JM, Cho, S, and Snarr, RL. Impact of spotter sex on one repetition maximum bench press performance. J Strength Cond Res 35(9): 2397-2400, 2021-Resistance exercise is popular because of favorable health outcomes associated with increased muscular fitness. For these reasons, 1 repetition maximum (1RM), mean velocity (MV), and peak power (PP) are of interest during the bench press. However, research has yet to evaluate whether spotter sex impacts bench press performance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the impact of spotter sex on bench press performance during a 1RM testing protocol. Twenty resistance-trained individuals (10 men and 10 women) visited the laboratory on 2 separate occasions. Estimated 1RM was self-reported by subjects before the 1RM protocol. During their visits, subjects had their 1RM (kg), MV (m·s-1), and PP (W) determined on a bench press 1RM protocol while using a male or female spotter. Deception was used by telling subjects the intent of the study was to determine the reliability of a linear position transducer for measuring MV and PP during the 1RM trials. The main findings revealed that measured 1RM values for male weight lifters were significantly higher than estimated 1RM values when using both a male (p = 0.01) and female spotter (p < 0.01). In addition, results revealed MV and PP were significantly higher for the 1RM trials when male weight lifters had a male spotter (both p < 0.01). Alternatively, there were no significant differences in estimated vs. measured 1RM values for women as well as no effect of spotter sex on bench press strength (all p > 0.05). Practitioners should note that sex of a spotter does not seem to impact measured 1RM. However, notable influences may be observed within MV and PP.