Practice how you play
When you participate in a sport, you agree to abide by certain rules.
In soccer, you know you can’t touch the ball with your hand (outside of very specific circumstances). In tennis, you know you have to land your shots within the lines.
Almost any sport will also specify equipment standards. The hoop must be x height from the floor. The goal must be y high and z wide.
Powerlifting is no different, you are given specific rules to follow for the execution of a successful lift (for example, waiting for the ‘squat’ and ‘rack’ commands when squatting). You are given specific equipment that you know you will be using on the competition platform – in the IPF for example, you will be lifting on an Eleiko barbell (or other similar approved barbell). In GPC, you will be lifting on a squat bar out of a monolift, and pulling on a deadlift bar.
Can you get strong without this equipment? Hell yes.
Should you familiarise yourself with the equipment you will be using on competition day? Hell yes.
If you have the opportunity to train on the equipment you will be using for competitions, you have control of one more variable. Would you practice golf with a club that wasn’t the right height? Think it might have a (negative) effect on your swing, and your performance?
So, practice how you intend to play. You might not have access to such equipment all the time – that’s ok. But put in the effort when you’re coming close to game day at least – drive out to that gym that’s further away. You train for months to put it all on the line on one day… don’t let something so simple screw up your preparation!