Deadlifting For Strength
The Deadlift is a great strength training method when a training program is well written and followed.
However, using the Powerlfiting Competition Deadlift (Squat as well as Bench Press) as a Training Exercise is counter productive.
Let look at…
To increase strength in muscle groups, the muscles need to be overloaded. Overloading the muscles innervates more Muscle Fiber. Muscle Fiber that are stressed respond by becoming stronger and/or larger; that dependent on how the training program is written and followed.
To overload the muscle in a exercise, at some point you need dramatically increase the intensity; pushing it infrequently near failure or to failure.
When an exercise is pushed to that kind of intensity, fatigue occurs. The problem with that is…
Muscle Fatigue Lead to Poor Technique
Once muscle fatigue occurs in an exercise, technique falls apart. This is part of the…
The Powerlifing Training Paradox
The irony is that to increase strength you need to overload the exercise at time to increase strength.
However, when pushing the exercise to near or failure, technique falls apart.
Thus, when pushing the Deadlift to near failure or to failure, the last rep or two are will lead to poor technique, learning how to perform the movement incorrectly.
To reiterate what I have stated in my previous post, that means using the Competition Powerlifts, such as the Competition Deadlift for your Deadlift Training works but it isn’t the optimal method.
What is unique about Powerlifting is that it one of the few sports, the only one that I know, that used the Competition Lifts as Training Exercises.
Other sports don’t do that. They go to the gym weight training to increase Strength and Power for their sport.
Pole Vaulters don’t vault for reps or use heavy polls to vault with.
Baseball Pitchers, Quarterback in Football and Basketball player don’t use weighted balls to pitch, throw or shoot baskets with for repetitions. They use regulation balls and essentially performing one rep at a time, focusing on technique.
Another factor is the muscle firing sequence and motor patter changes when a heavier or light ball is used or a if a heavier or light pole was used in Vaulting
Dr Tom McLaughlin (PhD Exercise Biomechanids/ former Powerlifter) research demonstrated that Technique is best built with single repetition for multiple sets with load in the neighborhood of your 1 Repetition Max, around 85% or more of 1 RM.
Auxiliary Exercises similar in nature to the Powerlifter are used to increase strength in the Powerlifts
Westside Anecdotal Data
Around the same time McLaughlin’s research came out, the Westside Method appeared.
The foundation of it falling in line with McLaughlin’s research.
Auxiliary Exercises were utilized to increase strength in the Powerlifts. Auxiliary Exercises were pushed to the limit, getting the weight at any cost.
Once one Auxiliary Exercise is exhausted, implement another.
NOT Powerlifting Specific
You don’t perform repetitions at a Meet Competition in the Deadlift, Squat or Bench Press.
Thus, performing repetitions with a Competition Deadlift, Squat or Bench Press is NOT Powerlifting Specific.
Secondly, the muscle firing sequence in an exercise is different with lighter load compared to heavy max load.
This takes us back to the Baseball Batter analogy. Learning to hit a 60 mph ball has very little carry over to hitting a 90 mph ball.
Strength can be increased by using the Powerlifts by using the Powerlifts as Training Exercises. However, doing so lead to poor technique when pushed to fatigue.
Technique is best developed with singles that in each Powerlift with heavy loads.
Strength that does NOT compromise Technique is optimally developed with Auxiliary Exercise that are similar to each Powerlift.