The most efficient way to lift a weight is to pick it up, and then put it down. Sounds easy, right? But sometimes we struggle to move our bodies in the right way to accomplish that. If your coach keeps talking about how your “bar path” is going all over the place, there’s now an app to show you exactly what that means.
The app, called Iron Path, is free on iOS, but the free version can only analyse three videos. To use it, import a video into the app, and drag the little circle (the “mask”) over the end of the weight. Then wait a minute for the app to do its magic.
When you play back your video, it’s like the barbell has a magic pencil on the end and it’s drawing a line in the air. You can tell whether your bar path is straight (or whatever is the appropriate path for the lift you’re doing), and if not, where you’re going wrong. Here’s an example where I’m basically doing the lift correctly: it’s a deadlift, and my bar path goes straight up and down:
Great! Now, to humble myself, here’s an example of a lift where I’m screwing up. On this overhead press, the bar makes an arc as I move it in front of my face—but my coach tells me I should actually adjust my torso angle so the bar can go up straight.
Iron Path doesn’t replace the advice of a coach, but it’s handy when you just want the facts: where does your bar path actually go? Now you know.