Strength Training Articles

Strength Training Articles

Latest Posts
Base Building: Max Effort Training Explained

Base Building: Max Effort Training Explained

The fear of max effort is rooted in the old training belief that “maxing out” should only be done once every so often to test strength gained over the course of a training block; otherwise, injury is guaranteed. This belief treats max effort training as a testing method, not a training method. 

Wed Jun 12, 2024
Base Building: Basic Training Template

Base Building: Basic Training Template

Why should an athlete use the Conjugate Method when a beginner-level trainee can make gains using a linear-based plan? The answer is efficiency. It has been our experience that athletes new to barbell training who utilize Conjugate-based training make gains in strength and performance at a faster rate than those using a phase-based approach. 

Thu Jun 06, 2024
Ally Kennedy’s Journey with Westside Barbell: Training for the 2024 Season

Ally Kennedy’s Journey with Westside Barbell: Training for the 2024 Season

When Ally Kennedy joined Westside Barbell, she already had a strong foundation from her previous...

Wed Jun 05, 2024
Executing a Repeated Effort Training Wave

Executing a Repeated Effort Training Wave

While we encourage all those new to the Conjugate Method to master the basic template first, we also want to encourage those familiar with Conjugate to use the methods as efficiently as possible. If an athlete needs lower or upper body hypertrophy training at higher intensities than usual, replacing dynamic effort with repeated effort work for a few waves is a great option. 

Fri May 31, 2024
Training Insights from MMA Fighter Matt Brown

Training Insights from MMA Fighter Matt Brown

I've learned countless lessons over the years, but with Matt Brown announcing his retirement from...

Wed May 29, 2024
Four Week Max Effort PR Plan

Four Week Max Effort PR Plan

Whether it be a sudden burden that causes fatigue-related issues to noticeably occur, or gradual wear and tear leading to decreased performance over a period of time, we must have options to go to so we can get training back on track. One option is what I refer to as the 3/speed/5/1 max effort plan.

Thu May 23, 2024
Basic Conjugate Training Advice VII

Basic Conjugate Training Advice VII

The Conjugate Method is the most beneficial training method an athlete can use to improve strength, explosive power, speed, and conditioning. Similar to the multifaceted demands of sport, the Conjugate Method exposes an athlete to various training stimuli to build a complete athlete. Our training not only enhances an athlete's special strengths but also enhances their sports skills. 

Fri May 17, 2024
Starting Conjugate: Max Effort Myths

Starting Conjugate: Max Effort Myths

By training max effort, an athlete can improve their squat, bench press, deadlift, and overhead press strength, as well as their ability to run faster, jump higher, and generate significant amounts of force rapidly. Aside from these benefits, max effort training also helps to enhance intra- and intermuscular coordination and increase bone and tissue density. This leads to improvements in sports skill execution, along with higher levels of durability and resilience. 

Fri May 10, 2024
Strengthening the Adductors

Strengthening the Adductors

The hip adductors are a group of muscles that play a vital role in all sports. These muscles are primarily responsible for thigh adduction and gait stabilization. The adductors are involved whether an athlete is running, jumping, squatting, or changing direction rapidly. Proper training of the adductors is essential to ensure athletes can produce high levels of force and avoid injury when performing lower-body sports tasks. 

Sat May 04, 2024
Max Effort Advice for Athletes

Max Effort Advice for Athletes

Absolute strength is the King of all special strengths. As absolute strength improves, the capacity for all other special strengths improves. This means an athlete has the potential to improve explosive strength, jump higher, and run faster. Max effort training is essentially the hammer that breaks the glass ceilings that limit athletic performance. 

Tue Apr 30, 2024
Improving Work Capacity

Improving Work Capacity

At Westside Barbell, we have long understood the benefit of building our athletes' work capacity. By using repeated effort and various conditioning methods, we have consistently developed athletes capable of performing sport-related tasks at a high level over an extended period of time. 

Tue Apr 23, 2024
Starting Conjugate: Adjusting DE Lower Training Percentages

Starting Conjugate: Adjusting DE Lower Training Percentages

Dynamic effort lower training days feature both a squat and deadlift main exercise. First, we execute the squat workout, then follow up with the deadlift. When performing a dynamic effort lower workout, there are specific training percentages and velocity requirements that must be met.

Wed Apr 17, 2024
Basic Conjugate Training Advice VI

Basic Conjugate Training Advice VI

The Conjugate Method opens up a whole new world of possibilities for athletes. Whether an athlete seeks to improve absolute strength, explosive power, speed, or conditioning, the Conjugate Method will deliver. However, a coach or athlete's success with the Conjugate Method will always depend on their overall understanding of strength training theory and application.

Thu Apr 11, 2024
Base Building: Accessory Exercise Programming

Base Building: Accessory Exercise Programming

By using basic accessory exercises, athletes can acclimate to the technical demands of each exercise, allowing them to raise the accessory training intensity a bit each week. Doing so will provide optimal stimulus in the same manner an experienced athlete would with increased levels of exercise variation.

Thu Apr 04, 2024
How to Start Powerlifting: Your First Steps Towards Strength

How to Start Powerlifting: Your First Steps Towards Strength

Powerlifting is not an easy sport, but it is rewarding. You will significantly improve your strength and body composition, develop a strong work ethic and discipline, and have some of the best times of your life. All it takes is a bit of grit, determination, and strict discipline.

Sat Mar 30, 2024
Basic Conjugate Training Advice V

Basic Conjugate Training Advice V

While some coaches cling to old methods and outdated approaches to sports preparation, the intelligent coach realizes the Conjugate Method is the way. Over the years, our gym has produced countless athletes with world-class strength, and we have worked and consulted with athletes at the highest level of conventional sports. The Conjugate Method has been successfully used to improve performance in football, basketball, baseball, track and field, rugby, lacrosse, and martial arts.

Wed Mar 27, 2024
Base Building: Conditioning

Base Building: Conditioning

At Westside, we have long understood the importance of improving conditioning to allow athletes to escalate training. For many years, Lou stressed the importance of GPP and conditioning work, which has become as much a part of the Conjugate Method as the max, dynamic, and repeated effort methods. Not only will a high level of conditioning allow an athlete to escalate training continuously, but it will also allow an athlete to recover properly each training week.

Wed Mar 20, 2024
Justin Inacio's 8-Week Bench Press Breakthrough

Justin Inacio's 8-Week Bench Press Breakthrough

In his rookie season, when athletes often focus just on their games, Justin Inacio, a...

Fri Mar 15, 2024
The Basic Template Breakdown

The Basic Template Breakdown

The Westside Barbell basic training template represents the base level of Conjugate Method training. While there may be many ways to design a Conjugate training plan, the basic template is the starting point where all individuals should begin when learning our training methods. By gaining a solid understanding of the basic template and its associated programming strategies, coaches and athletes will become capable of writing proper Conjugate Method programming. 

Tue Mar 12, 2024
Starting Conjugate: Developing the Mid and Upper Back

Starting Conjugate: Developing the Mid and Upper Back

The development of a strong posterior chain is a necessity for all athletes. Whether an athlete is focused on strength or conventional sports, a strong posterior chain will increase force output, improve stability, and enhance durability. A critical aspect of posterior chain development is strengthening the muscle groups responsible for supporting the spine.

Tue Mar 05, 2024