T Nation

Assessing weak points

This week I read a great article by Louie Simmons in Powerlifting USA that discussed bringing up the weak points of Mike Boldt’s bench. The article talked about prescribing a specific lift to bring up tricep strength which resulted in the lifter making 20% progress in a few months. Now, I know Louie Simmons makes his living teaching how to do this, but what about us normal guys trying to make progress? Is there a good reference to find out what these percentages or formulas are? I’m not new at this. I’ve been lifting for over 20 years, reading T-mag for 2+ and searched the forum and FAQ for info. Are there any books, trusted sites etc… that contain this knowlege? If I’m missing osmething point me in the right direction, PLEASE!

I haven’t come across any specific books that address each and every issue but rather have picked up tips here and there to add to my arsenal of knowledge. Your best bet IMO would be to read everything you can get your hands on including all of the articles that Tate and Simmons have written. If your looking for something more technical, check out ‘Supertraining’ by Mel Siff, ‘Science and Practice of Strength Training’ by Zatsiorsky. Although neither of these texts will be the be-all, end-all, they are a good start. If your interest is in powerlifting, read the Q/A archives over at elitefts.com as well all the articles they have. The articles at deepsquatter.com are also pretty good. What are the specific exercises your having trouble with and what is the problem? People on this forum will be able to help you out if you throw out a specific question.

Dan, Thanks for the info. I’m mainly concerned with powerlifting but I’m not looking for specific pointers. In fact that is the point of my post. I want to be able to assess my own weaknesses and address them early before there is an obvious problem. I know every body is different, but my main question is how do you know you need tricep work vs. front delt work vs. lat work in order to bring up your bench. Without a coach it’s impossible. Maybe this will spark a Dave Tate article in the future. How about it Dave?

Achieving Structural Balance - Charles Poliquin. Where? This site! Use the search.

If you haven’t read Tate’s articles ‘TNT part I’, ‘TNT part II’, and ‘Pressing Power’, I would check them out. They address those specific concerns. With regards to the bench press, the bar path will always favor the stronger muscle group. If the bar drifts over your face/delts, your triceps are weak and your shoulders are stronger. If you feel unstable on the way down, strengthen the lats (horizontal plane). Check out the above articles and your questions should be answered. Like I said in my previous post, read everything by Tate and Simmons and you will find most of your answers. Good Luck!