Strength Training Articles

Strength Training Articles

Latest Posts
Troubleshooting Dynamic Effort Squat Training

Troubleshooting Dynamic Effort Squat Training

Dynamic effort training must be performed for an athlete to reap the maximum rewards of max effort training. Max-effort training improves absolute strength, which is the maximum amount of force an athlete can produce. Dynamic effort training improves the rate of force development, which is the amount of time it takes to produce that force. When you effectively combine the two, you have an extremely strong and explosive athlete.

Thu Jan 26, 2023
The Powerlifting Good Morning

The Powerlifting Good Morning

The powerlifting good morning is an exercise that is considered a cornerstone of lower body training at Westside Barbell. We use this exercise to strengthen the posterior chain, specifically the lower back, glutes, and hamstrings. These muscle groups are integral to sports performance and must be trained regularly.

Fri Jan 20, 2023
How to Deadlift Correctly

How to Deadlift Correctly

As with any exercise, the key to success is learning how to deadlift correctly. Execution is vital for two reasons. One, proper execution will keep you from injuring yourself, and two, proper execution ensures the exercise is targeting the correct muscle groups. Either way, failure to execute proper form will ultimately result in failure or injury. 

Sun Jan 15, 2023
Starting Conjugate: Repeated Effort Bench Press

Starting Conjugate: Repeated Effort Bench Press

The repeated effort method is the method most responsible for ensuring an athlete maintains an optimal level of training volume every week. Unlike the maximal and dynamic effort methods, which are trained on specific days, the repeated effort method is utilized every training day. Why? Because it allows us a way of keeping our volume at the right level and focusing on the development of weak muscle groups. 

Tue Jan 10, 2023
Westside Barbell Back Training

Westside Barbell Back Training

Developing the back muscles should be a top priority for all athletes regardless of sport or training goals. These muscles play a significant role in strength and sports performance due to the role they play; supporting and stabilizing the spine. As we know, having a stable and adequately supported spine is the key to force production. 

Thu Jan 05, 2023
Improve Your Training for 2023

Improve Your Training for 2023

The New Year is upon us, along with another 52 weeks of training and the opportunity to become a better athlete. As a coach or an athlete, it should always be your goal to improve the quality and efficiency of your Conjugate Method training. The years pass by quickly, so we must make as much progress year to year as possible.

Each year, we must examine our training from both the mental and physical side, looking for the places we can improve to take our training and sports performance to the next level.

Sat Dec 31, 2022
Starting Conjugate: Basics of the Repeated Effort Method

Starting Conjugate: Basics of the Repeated Effort Method

When most people think of the Conjugate Method, two training methods come to mind, max...

Mon Dec 26, 2022
Starting Conjugate: ME Lower Walkthrough

Starting Conjugate: ME Lower Walkthrough

The Conjugate Method features four training days per week dedicated to specific upper and lower body strengths. At Westside, our first training day of the week is max effort lower. Max effort lower is a training day that uses variations of the squat, deadlift, and good morning to improve absolute strength.

Wed Dec 21, 2022
Differences in High Bar vs. Low Bar Squats

Differences in High Bar vs. Low Bar Squats

If you observe the different strength sports, you will notice that athletes typically prefer one type of bar position in each discipline of lifting. For instance, in sports like Olympic weightlifting and CrossFit, most athletes prefer to carry the squat bar in the high bar position. However, most athletes carry a mid to low bar position in sports like powerlifting or strongman.

Fri Dec 16, 2022
Starting Conjugate: Main Exercise Selection for Beginners

Starting Conjugate: Main Exercise Selection for Beginners

Effective strength training relies heavily on a few key factors; the proper regulation of intensity, volume, and frequency, optimal exercise selection, and correct exercise execution. Failure to control any of these aspects of training will reduce the effectiveness of the training and can potentially cause injury. In this article, I will focus on selecting exercises for a beginner new to the Conjugate Method.

Tue Dec 13, 2022
How to Bench Press Correctly

How to Bench Press Correctly

The bench press is an exercise that is a staple in practically any type of training program. It doesn't matter whether you are an athlete, a powerlifter, or someone just looking to get stronger; the bench press is one of the most effective exercises when focusing on building strength and muscle in the upper torso. However, to ensure this exercise is maximally effective, it is crucial to understand what qualifies as proper execution of a bench press. 

Thu Dec 08, 2022
Westside Barbell Triceps Training

Westside Barbell Triceps Training

It's no secret that if you want to be capable of pressing heavy weights on the bench or overhead press, you will need to increase your triceps' strength. The triceps play a significant role in all pressing movements, considering their involvement in elbow extension. It's easy to understand; a lack of tricep strength will limit your ability to extend the elbow, leading to failed sets and reps when training at high levels of volume or intensity.

Sat Dec 03, 2022
Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Four

Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Four

It is now week four of the four-week bench press PR program, and it is time to establish a new bench press PR single. Over the past three weeks, we have worked at different levels of volume and intensity while challenging our press strength and technique using exercise variation. Now it is time to see if the work we have put in will pay off as expected. 

Tue Nov 29, 2022
Base Building: Upper Body Main Exercises

Base Building: Upper Body Main Exercises

While it is true that mastering the Conjugate Method from a programming/coaching perspective can take many years and calls for the individual to understand the theory and application along with all of the nuances involved, proper execution of the methods is a relatively easy task to accomplish. As much as a beginner can benefit from traditional linear-style periodization, they can benefit even more from a Conjugate Method program.

Fri Nov 25, 2022
Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Three

Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Three

It is now week three of the four-week bench press PR program, and it is time to change up the angle of the press. We have focused on pressing from the flat position for the past two weeks. This week, we will focus on pressing from the incline position. This will allow us to place emphasis on the pecs and shoulder muscles, as well as the triceps. 

Sun Nov 20, 2022
Starting Conjugate: Managing Training Volume

Starting Conjugate: Managing Training Volume

The success of your Conjugate Method programming will depend on your ability to properly regulate three aspects of training: intensity, volume, and frequency. All three play a significant role in deciding whether or not you will attain the training goals you have in mind when designing your programming.

Thu Nov 17, 2022
Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Two

Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week Two

Ideally, an athlete should be rolling into the training week feeling adequately recovered and ready to handle some heavy weights. This week, we will work up to our first max-effort single attempt of the four-week PR training plan. This week will test an athlete's most significant weakness in the bench press.

Sat Nov 12, 2022
It’s Not a Phase

It’s Not a Phase

Phase training is impractical for a couple of reasons, mainly detraining. Phase training will always lead to detraining as the athlete transitions from phase to phase. This means that you will lose a percentage of the gains you attained in the previous phase due to a lack of focus on that particular strength in the current phase. Essentially, you trade proficiency in one strength for another.

Wed Nov 09, 2022
Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week One

Four Weeks to a Bench PR: Week One

As you accumulate training time, you may reach a point you cannot consistently hit a PR lift when you train a max-effort exercise.

Fortunately, this is not that big of an issue. The intention of max-effort training is to lift the heaviest weight possible, with the goal being to recruit the greatest number of motor units possible. By achieving maximal motor unit recruitment, we can improve absolute strength, eventually leading to a new PR lift being established.

Fri Nov 04, 2022
Starting Conjugate: Basic Workout Template

Starting Conjugate: Basic Workout Template

As an athlete new to the Conjugate Method, it is vital that you understand how to organize your training days properly. The organization of the training week is simple; max-effort lower on Monday, max-effort upper on Wednesday, dynamic-effort lower on Friday, and dynamic-effort upper on Saturday. You don’t have to train on those exact days, but you must maintain the timespan between each training day for recovery to remain optimal. 

Mon Oct 31, 2022