As a lifter it is paramount that you begin to learn your body and the basic principles of strength for yourself. I find that I always feel very fresh when I take the box away and free squat, and there is no loss in strength because of the box. The Westside Method, also known as the Conjugate Method, is a program that is often times misunderstood in the raw powerlifting realm. I prefer box squats for two reasons; I believe they yield better strength and speed gains versus conventional squatting, and the box relieves stress in my knees. Yet, I was top ten with and without gear and you can be too Myths Most raw lifters use old fashion methods. Many ask, how does Westside train for a raw contest? Westside RAW! Two sets of dumbbells with a weight you can do 20 reps fairly easy for the two sets. In my experience this approach provides adequate rest week to week, and won’t leave you broken or in need of a deload. Getting stronger is a lot easier than you think. People who say box squatting doesn’t translate well to raw, or will affect your ability to hit proper depth simply do not understand what they are talking about. Most raw lifters use old fashion methods. Just remember what speed work is about and why you’re doing it. There are countless ways to write a program that will yield results, but the name of the game is efficiency. I have had good results by training my weakness for two max effort workouts and then my strong point for the next session, repeated in that fashion. However, six months later, his bench is up 20 pounds! 9 sets of 3 reps with close to moderate grip. Don’t jump straight into high amounts of work. I’m sure you’ve probably heard about other lifters in similar situations; some guy can't squat or deadlift due to a lower back issue. You gotta be fast to be strong! Yet, I was top ten with and without gear and you can be too. If something isn’t working, ditch it. It is based on your contest max. I’m not going to touch on the technical or mental aspects as there are plenty of articles and instructional videos out there already. Also, with the volume smaller and smaller it can lead to injuries. Pick a barbell core lift and max out, you must rotate each week. If I feel like crap one day, then I’ll do a triple or a max set of five instead. Here is Misha Koklyaev, 900 pound raw deadlifter and all-around strength badass, deadlifting 750×10!! The Westside system calls for a 3 week wave for squatting and benching. Train like a bodybuilder...but before you go reaching for you iPhone to post shirtless selfies of yourself on your Instagram account, remember that this is Powerlifting. Your success is 100% dependant on your ability to identify your weakness, and make proper exercise selections. What I intend to do is provide you with a basic explanation, and examples of how I put my main exercises together for raw training using Westside principles. Dave Tate, in the elitefts™ bench manual, talks about Bridging — the term he uses to explain a smart progressive way to add volume to a weak point from one workout to the next in order to avoid injury. My goal is to explain it simply, that way you can immediately apply it to your training. The game is to be told not sold, so if some asshole is trying to get you to paypal some cash for advice, spend the money on a book instead. Like it or not, the dynamic effort method will develop explosiveness that will compliment your maximum strength. It isn’t uncommon to see great raw lifters perform great feats of rep effort strength. Not good. If I am training to 85% of my max, I work up to a triple. The author trained ten years without a squat suit and fourteen years without a bench shirt. Box squats will develop the posterior chain like nothing else. Westside Barbell is an Invitation Only Training Facility/Living Laboratory pushing the boundaries of Athletic performance under the guidance of Louie Simmons. This added up to 14,000lbs on speed day or Friday. Exactly. The way I use my max effort lower days is to focus on training the deadlift and the good morning. This is completely true if you’re thinking that squatting 225 for 8 sets of 2 for DE every week will make … The list that follows is pretty much a list of commonly preached Westside philosophy which—if removed from your training—will open up massive new potential for gaudy and continued gains. All of the strongest people I know in the world all have one thing in common; they know their body and they know how to train themselves. If you don’t sit back far enough, if you lose tightness, or if you end up rocking off the box, then don’t be surprised if they don’t yield any results. What’s wrong with this thinking?
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