More of a lighthearted topic and yet an interesting one nonetheless. Do we need a gym partner and the pros and cons to having one, or more than one. I myself train alone, simply because no one I know really trains at the times I do and the way I prefer to. I do, however, have friends at the gym that I will ask to spot me when I really need the help on that last bench press set. So it really is your own call.
A gym partner can motivate you; it is harder to skip gym when you have someone relying on you as opposed to training by yourself. You will always be competitive, which means you will be pushing yourself to the limit as ego does get involved here, and there is nothing wrong with that. You push each other and assist each other on those last couple of reps when it is needed. For example, if I am bench pressing 140kg and I do 6 reps. I may have it in me to push out another couple, and that is where the muscle fibres are really broken down, and growth is seen. However, as I am alone, I don’t feel like being that guy that has the bar around my neck and has to kind of slide of the bench press. So I leave it where I am comfortable. A partner can push you beyond that.
However, this is what I’ve seen in many gym partners or groups of three. The rest periods become ridiculous. They rest for far too long as there is far too much to talk about. Rather chat before and after the session and while training, talk about training. The groups get too big, also meaning the intensity and the rest periods aren’t done right. There is too much spotting; you should not be spotting from the first rep, and spotting means the smallest amount of help literally so that you do not drop the weight on yourself. It does not mean you lift the bar for your partner.
So a gym partner can be a fantastic asset; you can push yourself more and reach higher and newer limits. Try not to make it too much of a social gathering so partner up with someone as driven and likeminded as you.