T Nation

Chain-Specific Methods

CT,
As I understood it, one of the “a-ha” ideas behind your HP Mass program was that different movement chains have different mixes of fiber types, and should therefore be trained with different methods. As I read it, “Pushing” muscles are predominantly type II, so more low-rep explosive movements, done frequently. While Pulling muscles are more type I fibers, so more holds, high-reps, and train them less frequently.

Similarly, Hatfield’s old stuff charted different training frequencies for different bodyparts based on recovery times - arms recovered faster than legs, etc.

Obviously some programs like Built for Bad ignore this idea and still work. Are you thinking differently with rep ranges or methods based on the movement pattern (press, squat, hinge, etc) or is that kind of specificity not as important in your experience?

Are there any movement chains or bodyparts that are particularly “special” in terms of needing different training methods from most others?

Having done Built for Bad and loved every workout, the only thing in the original exercise plan that didn’t really “work” FOR ME was the Lat Pulldown. But the other 4 movements in the default plan are naturally performance based.

I could be wrong, but I believe that CT hadn’t TRULY discovered the magic of the High Pull when he published the HPMASS series. There are some videos of Daryl Gee performing it, but I don’t think it was a focus at the time.
But trust me when I say that the High Pull, done right, WILL charge the nervous system and WILL build muscle and strength.

CT stated that you could pick any 5 movements that you wanted for Built for Bad - as long as they hit the whole body.

For me, lats, biceps, and abs are the only muscles that TRULY need a completely different style of training. Everything else responds well to performance.

I’d be interested to see what coach says as well.

It’s not really about fiber type. Yes it can play a role in certain muscles, but not everybody has the same ratios.

It has not to do with function and movements.

To me the legs, shoulders/chest, lower back/traps are best trained with high performance exercises. And those high performance exercises are best done for lower reps and heavier weights.

I feel that lats and arms respond better to more focused work. Not necessarily isolation exercise (although they can be used) but exercises where you focus on the muscle contraction instead of moving the weight from A to B. And these exercises are best done with slightly higher reps and the use of intensive methods.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:
It’s not really about fiber type. Yes it can play a role in certain muscles, but not everybody has the same ratios.

It has not to do with function and movements.

To me the legs, shoulders/chest, lower back/traps are best trained with high performance exercises. And those high performance exercises are best done for lower reps and heavier weights.

I feel that lats and arms respond better to more focused work. Not necessarily isolation exercise (although they can be used) but exercises where you focus on the muscle contraction instead of moving the weight from A to B. And these exercises are best done with slightly higher reps and the use of intensive methods.[/quote]

Love these nuggets of wisdom. What do you think of this CT (size, performer,
Enjoyable workouts):
6x-7x a week, pick one barbell main movement
Ramp up to 3-5 rm top set
-10-20% density work (3 sets max reps, 1 short fo failure or 5x5)
One auxuarily movement (5-8 rm) done AMRAP, 3 sets
Ring work for Lats (can be worked daily)
Calves, face pulls etc as needed daily

Just enjoy this style too much to stick with more exercises/“bodybuisling” stuff