Powerlifting have become more popular over the recent years but whatever happens it will forever remain one of most unattractive sports forever. The reason is that the sport lacks a lot when it comes to creating original content and attracting auditory.
Nobody wants to see fat asses squatting 1000 lbs in ten suits and a monolift. It's ugly, boring and most of all pointless. Yes, geared powerlifting is pointless. Who gives a singular fuck how much you are bench pressing using a shirt....wait let me rephrase that. Who gives a singular fuck how much you are bench pressing at all? When you think about it the bench press number of somebody else is not particularly important. It's like asking somebody how often he/she goes to the toilet. It's that useful.
Another reason why powerlifting is boring as fuck is this never endless repetitiveness. You wait one whole day to see the same thing over and over and over. Let's be honest - seeing somebody else bench press/squat/deadlift is not very interesting after the first 10 minutes. Sure, you may learn something if you are a lifter but if you are outside spectator you would certainly prefer to watch funny animals than this crap.
Another reason why powerlifting will never be popular is the gear. Like bodybuilders powerlifters like to abuse gear. The lifts would fall down by hundreds of pounds if gear usage is stopped. You think this guy is natural ?
People don't like the iron sports because gear plays a heavy role. Of course all athletes take steroids but in powerlifting and bodybuilding steroids are super important and a major factor. That turns people off.
My advice for upcoming lifters would be to find another career outside of the iron sports and just use weightlifting to improve their health and life instead of focusing on it like it's super important. You can compete and what not but powerlifting is not going to pay the bills.
This could never be mainstream and the only way for powerlifting to ever be part of the Olympics is to remove the usage of suits, bench shirts and knee wraps but since the whole sport is built on hurt egos my guess is people will continue to be slaves of the big numbers.
Good for them.