T Nation

Bands & Chains

I need some help. I’ve been powerlifting for about 4 months. My question to you guys is when do I incorparate the bands and chains? I’m 5’9 175lbs. Bench Max 225 Squat Max 235

What does your routine look like now?

Your squat is awful, sorry.

Try a smolov squat program, it’ll bring up your squat FAST.

They would be incorporated after standard measures of reps/sets/periodization have been exhausted.

From Dave Tate-“Stick To The Basics, Beanpole” :

A beginner doesn’t need to start with advanced training principles. He needs to first build a solid foundation with basic movements.

He has mentioned this a few other times in different ways too.

[quote]Ghost22 wrote:
Your squat is awful, sorry.

Try a smolov squat program, it’ll bring up your squat FAST.[/quote]

He is asking how to incorporate bands and chains into his program. Not whether or not his squat sucks or what program to do. Can’t you give advice without tearing down his lifts? Besides he is just a beginner and probably not ready for the smolov routine just yet.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:
They would be incorporated after standard measures of reps/sets/periodization have been exhausted.

From Dave Tate-“Stick To The Basics, Beanpole” :

A beginner doesn’t need to start with advanced training principles. He needs to first build a solid foundation with basic movements.

He has mentioned this a few other times in different ways too.

[/quote]

I agree, after only 4 months you should be focusing on sticking with a program and getting stronger, not advanced training. The best advice a beginner can get is to lift harder. You can think yourself in circles, but you’re always going to come back to just training hard.

I personally think volume is the way to go for a beginner. I’d stay away from chains and DEFINATELY bands for a good while longer. Wait til you add another 100lb on your bench at least before oyu think about bands.

In the words of Jim Wendler… You don’t have a weak point, you’re just plain weak all over.

Not trying to rag on you cos I remember how bit an accomplishment it was to bench 225 and have 2 plates on. Just keep working and the weights wil come in time. Hell I’m not that far ahead of you, I’m still fighting to get 315!

Call me crazy and inexperienced (which is true…doh) but I’m a firm believer in not changing your program up if you are still making gains. Call me an adiot, but I’m not trying the best routine in the world unless my current routine has hit a brick wall.

Well, judging from your squat numbers I would say your biggest focus should be on technique. I just can’t imagine that you are only squatting 235 with perfect or even good technique. Either videotape yourself squatting and get feedback from people who know, or find someone who knows to watch your technique.

As for chains and bands, get your technique dialed in, then you can add chains and bands.

Thanks alot for the info. guys. And don’t worry I know that my overall strength is poor but I’m consistently in the gym so I hope that will contribute to my success later on.I just read some Info. for beginners that Dave Tate wrote and it’s helping me out alot.And again I appreciate it.

[quote]jumper wrote:
What does your routine look like now? [/quote]

It basically has all the principles that louie talks about except for adding bands chains, or doing sled dragging.I do it in meso’s which last about 4 weeks. I’m in there 3 times a week with 72 hours between the max effort days. I do box squats on dynamic and max days. I switch up the supp work every 2 weeks and pretty much maintain the accs. work until the meso is over.

[quote]Ghost22 wrote:
Your squat is awful, sorry.

Try a smolov squat program, it’ll bring up your squat FAST.[/quote]

Thanks for the constructive critcism.I need to know where i stand.

I don’t think that you need to be doing a simular routine of westside. You don’t seem like you have the experience for that. and like the others have said stay away from the bands and chains right now. Also I would cut out the max effort and dynamic days and do something where you do % of your max effort. One day go for more reps while on another go for 3-5. You will see gains on any program right now b/c you are a beginner.

Chains are fun, makes it harder to push up on bench in the long run and they can be difficult to put on if messed up.
put them on your bench…and you can do curls with them on the bar

Westside stuff is not really for beginers. If you want get the manuals from elitefts.com just to check out, then you will see that dynamic stuff, especially chains and bands is only for experienced lifters that have muliple years of training under their belts. From there you can progress to dynamic exercises with straight weight.

After a year then use chains after another year then use bands. Bands can be downright dangerous if you don’t have an experienced lifter teaching and helping you.

I would never haved used chains or bands unless I had competitive power lifters or strength coaches helping me, which luckily for me I did.