Strength Training Articles

Strength Training Articles

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Westside Barbell Deadlift Variation Guide

Westside Barbell Deadlift Variation Guide

One exercise that plays a central role in any Conjugate Method program is the deadlift. We utilize the deadlift and include the many variations of the deadlift that are just as effective at building strength and muscle mass. The reason for this is the deadlift's ability to develop posterior strength, often at a rate faster than most other lower body exercises. 

Sun Apr 30, 2023
Three Movements to Build the Trunk

Three Movements to Build the Trunk

Whether you are a professional athlete or a hobbyist who enjoys weight training, all humans can benefit from improving the strength of the muscle groups that comprise the torso. Anatomically speaking, these muscle groups are collectively referred to as the trunk muscles. When people hear the term "trunk," they often think of the abdominal muscles. However, the trunk includes both anterior and posterior muscle groups.

Sun Apr 23, 2023
Louie Simmons' Reverse Hyper Machine

Louie Simmons' Reverse Hyper Machine

Louie Simmons invented the Reverse Hyper to answer the problems he faced after suffering a severe injury. The Reverse Hyper was instrumental for helping rehab Louie's back and increasing the strength all who used it. This was integral for the heights the Westside lifters achieved and the reason why the Reverse Hyper is used by so many across the world.

Sat Apr 15, 2023
Too Tough to Take Down

Too Tough to Take Down

I have said it before and will repeat it; when skill sets are equal or similar, the stronger, faster, and more athletic athlete almost always prevails. If you have to bet on a fight, and all you know about the two fighters is that they are equally skilled in martial arts, but one athlete squats 800lbs while the other squats 315lbs, who would you bet your life savings on if you were forced to?

When skill and technical ability are practically equal, as they usually are at the top of any sport, absolute strength and athleticism make the difference.

Thu Apr 13, 2023
Enhancing Athletic Performance: How Dante Leon Optimized His Grappling Skills with Strength and Conditioning

Enhancing Athletic Performance: How Dante Leon Optimized His Grappling Skills with Strength and Conditioning

Success in professional grappling demands a combination of skill, strategy, and athleticism. As a highly...

Fri Apr 07, 2023
Starting Conjugate: Standard Bench Variations

Starting Conjugate: Standard Bench Variations

When programming exercise variations, it is crucial to remember that you want to get the most gains out of the least amount of variation. This means sticking to the standard variations without adding further variation to the exercises as long as you continue to PR and make gains. As much as a new exercise variation can be entertaining, don’t trick yourself out of what is currently working just because you are bored or found a new exercise on social media. 

Wed Apr 05, 2023
Escalating Jump Training

Escalating Jump Training

Plyometric training is one of the most common methods to enhance an athlete's power output and athleticism. No matter the sport, all athletes need the ability to produce tremendous amounts of force in the shortest time. As an athlete, using plyometrics will allow you to separate yourself from your competition with explosive movements and rapid force production.

Wed Mar 29, 2023
Starting Conjugate: Deloading

Starting Conjugate: Deloading

One of the most important aspects of training is fatigue management. Truthfully, you could argue that fatigue management is the most critical aspect of any training program. How fatigue levels are managed will dictate the intensity and frequency an athlete can train, ultimately deciding the progress made each year. If the athlete has to regularly deload, this will lead to many less-than-optimal training days accumulated yearly.

Wed Mar 22, 2023
Training Consistency: The Key to Unlocking Optimal Athletic Performance

Training Consistency: The Key to Unlocking Optimal Athletic Performance

How Consistency, Trust, and Communication Lead to Greater Skill Acquisition and Injury Reduction Introduction: In...

Fri Mar 17, 2023
The Reverse Hack Squat

The Reverse Hack Squat

The reverse hack squat is an accessory exercise that can be useful for any athlete regardless of sport or training focus. Athletes will always need stronger glutes, hamstrings, and calves, so a machine that can be used in this manner will always remain an appropriate option when selecting accessory exercises. Considering the anterior training options also provided, you can see that the hack squat is a valuable training tool.

Sat Mar 11, 2023
Starting Conjugate: How to Warm-Up

Starting Conjugate: How to Warm-Up

Social media has become a useful and powerful tool for strength coaches and educators to reach and teach the masses, and this is for sure. However, at times, certain aspects of the training process become overanalyzed or overemphasized for the sake of content. There is no doubt warm-ups fall into this category. 

Sun Mar 05, 2023
Basic Conjugate Training Advice II

Basic Conjugate Training Advice II

Instead of focusing on only one strength or athletic trait, we simultaneously focus on multiple strengths and athletic characteristics. By doing this, we avoid detraining and provide the athlete with gains in strength and ability that can be sustained and transferred to sport. We don't want athletes that are strong sometimes, fast other times, and injured most of the time. We want athletes that show up on gameday at their strongest, fastest, and fittest. 

Sun Feb 26, 2023
Starting Conjugate: Simplified Meet Peak Program

Starting Conjugate: Simplified Meet Peak Program

The simplified meet peak approach begins when an athlete is four weeks out from a powerlifting meet. This is when exercise selection, volume regulation, intensity regulation, and energy management become vital. If you can successfully account for each of these aspects of peaking for competition, you’re good. If not, you can expect to underperform on competition day.

Sun Feb 19, 2023
Conjugate Football: Off-Season Max Effort Lower

Conjugate Football: Off-Season Max Effort Lower

Training to improve absolute strength is essential for any athlete, no matter the sport. By improving absolute strength, you become capable of higher levels of force output, improve intramuscular coordination, and increase tissue and bone density. Improvements in absolute strength will make an athlete bigger, stronger, faster, and more resilient. However, these are not the only benefits gained by improving absolute strength.

Sun Feb 12, 2023
Selecting the Best Tricep Exercises

Selecting the Best Tricep Exercises

The Conjugate Method provides a programming template that makes it easy for an athlete to train the triceps to improve upper body absolute strength and muscle mass. For many years, Louie emphasized the importance of tricep development for all athletes. If you have ever visited Westside, you know that much of our training on upper body days directly or passively target the triceps.

Mon Feb 06, 2023
Basic Conjugate Training Advice I

Basic Conjugate Training Advice I

Starting a Conjugate Method-based program for the first time can be challenging. There is a lot to learn and understand for a coach or athlete to build a beneficial and effective Conjugate training program. This is why we encourage those new to our methods to take things slow and keep the programming simple as you begin Conjugate-style training. 

Tue Jan 31, 2023
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