Strength Training Articles

Strength Training Articles

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Introduction to Deficit Deadlifts

Introduction to Deficit Deadlifts

The deficit deadlift is a lower-body exercise variation that extends the overall range of motion of a traditional deadlift, placing an increased demand on the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back.

This exercise is often used as a main exercise during a max effort training day but can also be used as an accessory exercise on both max and dynamic effort training days. At Westside, the deficit deadlift is one of our more frequently used deadlift exercise variations.

Fri Jul 19, 2024
Powerlifting vs. Weightlifting

Powerlifting vs. Weightlifting

Powerlifting and weightlifting focus on determining the strongest athlete using basic barbell exercises. Both sports require athletes to successfully perform barbell lifts to a standard, with the goal of lifting the heaviest weights possible to achieve a winning total. In strength sports, a total refers to the sum of the heaviest successfully completed competition lifts. 

Fri Jul 12, 2024
Expert Advice on Optimizing Athlete Health with Dr. Shawn Bailey

Expert Advice on Optimizing Athlete Health with Dr. Shawn Bailey

In our latest episode of the Westside Barbell Podcast, we had the pleasure of speaking...

Wed Jul 03, 2024
The Seated Deadlift

The Seated Deadlift

The seated deadlift is a lower-body exercise variation used to improve hip strength and deadlift technique. When performed correctly, it targets the superficial and deep gluteal muscles, adductor muscles, iliopsoas group, and abdominals. Depending on how the exercise is programmed, it can be used to build or test strength and technique.

Fri Jun 28, 2024
Accessory Training: Shoulder Exercises

Accessory Training: Shoulder Exercises

Building strong and healthy shoulders is a critical aspect of training. If you are an athlete, improving the strength, work capacity, and durability of the shoulders will improve sports performance and lengthen careers. Not only will this benefit the athlete in the short term, but the long-term quality of life will be enhanced as athletes age and experience fewer instances of shoulder pain or discomfort. 

Thu Jun 20, 2024
How Strong Should I Be?

How Strong Should I Be?

Exploring the Extremes and Scientific Standards of Human Strength Strength. We often visualize bare human...

Fri Jun 14, 2024
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