T Nation

Any GB based westside followers

Hi guys, I’ve seen a few guys posting on here from the UK, so have any of you got any idea of some decent powerlifting gyms in the south west of England? I’m getting sick of ‘Fitness First’, and am seriously considering setting up my own gym in the garage -racks and the like.

So, before I splash out a load of money, any ideas where I could visit?

Hi Bonzo,
Sorry mate cannot help you there. East Midlands myself. Been on the Westside for about 2 years.My gymn is very good and lets me keep my chains behind the counter.You will just have to keep trying or start at home.Best of luck

Don’t know of any gyms in the south west but stubob might know, PM him and see.

Hi Guys,

South East Ex Westsider (It’s still the greatest system for powerlifts though, I am just in a differrent sport!), I embarked on My First and only westside routine around 4 years ago at 19 years old, and made mind blowing gains in the 3 lifts in a 5 month cycle. One thing I should mention as far as most Gyms are concerned is the lack of provisions for Box Squatting. I ended up doing ME stuff at the Gym and DE stuff at home. I don’t know about what you are doing exactly since most people chop and change the template/exercises to accomodate their facilities/time. eg I had no chains and not very good bands. But you MUST and I repeat must be doing Box Squats. This exercise is up there with the fundamentals of westside: conjugating the periodisation etc. I use this exercise extensively even today, I beleive it’s absolutely critical in teaching the POWER Squat and is also an amazing Starting Strength builder.

Take care

Mojo just out of curiosity what sport do you compete in now?

I’ve been Westsiding since Oct last year, after a visit to Beni’s place of Westside worship.

I live near Bath. The gym I train at isn’t a powerlifting gym and doesn’t have a power rack. It has a Squat rack which I manage to work with and I have more than enough weight to work with as my mate who’s a bodybuilder owns the gym and he’s a lot stronger than me.

I don’t really know of any gyms other than those locally.

There’s an LA gym in Bristol somewhere which is a bit of an iron pit so I’ve been told but not sure of anything else.

My dream would be to build a small building at the bottom of my garden and put a power rack in it and then I could train at whatever time I wanted… I’ve looked into it and it would cost about ?3000. Not too much but I don’t have that kicking around in my wallet.

Where do you live Bonzo…?


I’m from Swindon, Wiltshire. At the moment I’ve been content with doing box squats off a bench on a squat rack. Maybe I’ll have to start saving my cash.

Bonzo - That’s exactly what I do. I think it works quite well. I adjust the Flat/Decline/Incline Bench to the height I need and set it out to when I need it. I sort where my feet go and then get on with it.

I haven’t found a problem with anything as yet. Although I would like to do some squat pin presses which I’m unable to do.

I also setup the bench etc with the squat rack so that I can bench my max and use the squat rack as you would the supports on a rack.

So you live in Swindon, the great western shopping centre thing… Quality, I got some Nikes there last year. I think we’re getting a Nike shop at Clarks Village near us soon.


If any of you require Westside bands,videos,or general equipment can you let me know as I shall be receiving a delivery from the USA,within the next few days.

Beni, I’m in good company here as I’ve read your posts in the past, your quite the Westside guru!
I am ‘trying to learn’ the shot put. I know your laughing since i told you i don’t westside anymore, even though it’s good for the shot put. But my time is very limited due to work/study and my training is spent on tech work with the shot and weight loss stuff (I’m a fat git an’ a half at the mo!). Also, getting strong and learning the spin shot simultaneously is a big no no!I’m not too good yet, hoping to throw 15m+ this season, then i’ll get strong again. Very easy to get strong, very hard to throw far.
I don’t know if you know Dave Caster, he’s very pro westside and a genius, he wrote some great stuff on various forums a few years ago, about weight training for throwing , big influence on my current and future training.

Take care bro

StuBob and Bonzo,

I would be very careful about box squatting off a bench, not for safety purposes, but just that unless you guys are 6’5" its far too high, you must at least break parrallel and work to lower the depth (addressing specific depths is a bit more advanced).
AS I mentioned I did my de stuff at home and was lucky to have a (crappy) squat rack and close to 300kg weights,but you don’t need this much. As for the box, I purchased around 15 garden tiles from B & Q which cost me about 25ish quid. they’re 45cm by 45 cm so you have to accurate with your footing othewise you can fall off, but this was excellent for decrementing the height when i needed and extremely solid. You must learn to improvise, all the greats did: Alexeyev and especially Paul Anderson. Creativity and sensible experimentation were the two most important lessons i learned from westside.
As a side note, I never used more than 130kg for box squatting on my way to a 265 kg squat and benched no more than 100kg (only used 70 kg with the crappy bands) on my way to a 185 kg bench. also 250 kg dead. Although the support stuff was done heavy. Not great lifts, but there no support stuff (belt, straps etc) was used (takes all the fun out for me!), but an okay acheivement for a 19 year old, I weighed 99 kg @ 184 cm tall, with no coach, a strong 60kg partner and plenty of looks at the gym (good gym though, women were banned from entering!)


Wasn’t paying attention to your post from before about vids. I wouldn’t mind checking out the Special Strengths vid. Also do you have a price list up anywhere on your stuff?

NoMojoPin - The bench that I use is an adjustable decline. I can go below parallel with it so I can do it fine.

We had lots of training on the box squat with Beni so we should be ok. Although every time I go to see Beni I need refreshers.

Your numbers quoted above are excellent, higher than mine.

Have you ever thought of paying Beni a visit?


I’ve just started a new thread on the Off Topic forum, titled UK T-Cell 3…

Please post there and we can see how many of us from England there are.


I get the videos in the next couple of weeks,send me a pm for prices of equipment etc,etc.

Well the bench I’m using is about an inch below parallel so no problems on that front.

Thanks Stubob but i’ve got to say my strength is no where near these days, i did 100 bench for 11 in jan , having not really benched at all in the last 2 years, i still don’t bench get’s in the way of my other training