T Nation

Favorite Accessory Movements and Techniques for weak points

I figured this would be a good thread to get insight on bringing up weak points since there are always so many questions on it.

List your favorite exercises and techniques for bringing them up.

You could even list some ideas that you think may be good and haven’t tried yet.

I am a really big fan of Floor Presses for increasing bench. I think it allows you to:
-Learn how to stay tight on a stable surface
-Really clench your ass cheeks to get leg drive
-Hammer your lockout strength

My bench really improved once I started adding these in. I programmed them kinda like 5-3-1 (second edition for accessory movements).

Also a pretty big fan of Good Mornings and Squats with the Safety Squat Bar. Doesn’t beat up your shoulders like a normal bar trying to hold it behind your neck, and you get an awesome training stimulus. I consider squatting with it to be almost the exact same thing as a front squat, and use the terms interchangeably by accident pretty often.

Does Prowler count as accessory?

If I had to just choose 1 for upper and lower each, I’d go front squat and close grip bench press. I know for sure that if those go up so does my squat, bench press, and my deadlift.

I’m loving deadlifts paused at the knees at the moment.

For bench, I’ve been doing close grip floor press; one set to failure followed by rest paused singles from the pins, with a dropset and rest pause doubles and triples. Destroys my triceps and helps me to grind.

I’m in a bit of a hip thrust/snatch-grip deadlift phase for getting out of my deadlift plateau. Seems to be coming along nicely.

Pause squats have helped me quite a bit lately.
I also like DB rows at a slight incline and good-mornings with a moderate-narrow stance.

For those that use front squats as an accessory movement, what set/rep schemes have worked the best for you?

Snatch grip rack pulls/block pulls for the deadlift

C G Bench w/ chains for bench

Reverse band Squat to low box for squat.

Good thread.

Bench
Close Grip off Boards
Any bench variation with a pause
High Rep Dumbells

Squat & Deadlift
Low Box Squats with Safety Squat Bar
Good Mornings with Safety Squat Bar
Sumo Deadlifts
I don’t know what you’d call these – deadlift to lockout, lower to knees & pause for a second, then back to lockout

Recently I have found an odd carryover from ab wheel rollouts to my deadlift. Basically, my abs and upper back were holding my deadlift back and ab wheel rollouts help with both of those. I do them for high reps (40-50 per set) from the knees.

What seems to be working for me:

Bench- WGBP and pin presses from the chest.

Squat and Dead- SSB squats

Upper back strength and tightness have ALWAYS been an issue for me. I picked up a SSB a few months ago, and I can seriously feel it improving every week.

Aw nice idea. I’ll be echoing a few people with mine.

Bench:
Close Grip Floor Press
Close Grip 2-3 Board Press
Dips

Deadlift:
Kroc Rows
Deadlifts Paused at about the knee (or a little below where you have a bad sticking point)

My bench is currently stalled, but I’m trying out what several other people have already mentioned…close grip floor presses. I have them programmed as a main 531 lift. I think the OHP can be good for long limb lifters too, which I also have as a main lift. On top of that I’m doing dumbbell chest presses for volume and incline.

For the squat and deadlift my supplement movements are front squats and good mornings. With the fronts I use density training and try to beat time with the same workout. For good mornings I usually will just do some sets of 10.

[quote]frankjl wrote:
I don’t know what you’d call these – deadlift to lockout, lower to knees & pause for a second, then back to lockout[/quote]
Dimel deadlifts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UWTSNmulwJM

Anyway, my 3 favorites are swiss bar bench, safety squat bar squats, and thick bar deadlifts (always seems to help my grip on deads).
Also situps and ab work in general. Lame, I know, but core strength and stability is a weakness for me.

I started doing one handed dumbell bench presses. I’ve never seen them recommended (except on the newest TNation article) but I tried it and it felt good. I like to stretch my arm out with a good reach so I can really feel the press in my chest. I have a problem of using my arms/shoulders too much in the BP so I feel it’s helpful. Do two sets with each arm and then make your last one a normal dumbell BP.

I also liked doing seated one armed dumbell shoulder presses. On the bench (you gotta support your back). Since they are one armed, do drop sets. Finish a set with both arms, drop the weight 5kg and try to get the same reps or more with little or no rest. Three sets.

I also love Kroc rows because they’re just hella fun and look crazy.

[quote]MrX wrote:

For those that use front squats as an accessory movement, what set/rep schemes have worked the best for you?[/quote]

I’m doing once a week for 5/4/3/2/1 and a back off set. Add 10kg every set. Increase weights by 5kg next week.

I find its good to do more reps/sets in a lower percentage and slowly build up. Get a decent amount of your sets in the 3-5 range @ 75ish% and increase weights each session. Just make sure to hit every rep with good form (back tight, core strong, body up!)

Also heavy heavy shrugs like Jamie from c&p does them.

The first time I tried them I couldn’t even get three plates up, stuck with it for awhile and could do five plates plus a little more. Yes, I’m not a big guy.

But I love that everyone in this thread seems to end up listing quite a bit of exercises. We like lifting too much haha. This is why I like to train at least four times a week: it’s fun being able to get a variety of movements in and learn new technique/lifts.

[Quote]I’m doing once a week for 5/4/3/2/1 and a back off set. Add 10kg every set. Increase weights by 5kg next week.

I find its good to do more reps/sets in a lower percentage and slowly build up. Get a decent amount of your sets in the 3-5 range @ 75ish% and increase weights each session. Just make sure to hit every rep with good form (back tight, core strong, body up!)[/quote]

Thanks for the info. I enjoy front squats but have still been trying to find the right rep ranges to work in to get the most benefit. Currently running 3/5/1, and your suggestions sound good.

[quote]VTBalla34 wrote:
I am a really big fan of Floor Presses for increasing bench. I think it allows you to:
-Learn how to stay tight on a stable surface
-Really clench your ass cheeks to get leg drive
-Hammer your lockout strength

My bench really improved once I started adding these in. I programmed them kinda like 5-3-1 (second edition for accessory movements).

Also a pretty big fan of Good Mornings and Squats with the Safety Squat Bar. Doesn’t beat up your shoulders like a normal bar trying to hold it behind your neck, and you get an awesome training stimulus. I consider squatting with it to be almost the exact same thing as a front squat, and use the terms interchangeably by accident pretty often.

Does Prowler count as accessory?[/quote]

If it drives your lifts up or fixes a weakness, absolutely.

Ill throw my 2 cents in:

I love the wide-stance cambered bar goodmorning. It really brings my hamstring and glutes up and teaches me to keep my back flat during deadlifts. I also like to keep my arms threw on the bar and pulling the bottom cambered bar back towards me like a straight arm pulldown. It teaches to keep my back tight like it needs to be on a deadlift.

I do these with high volume, working up to a max single or double or both. Then I do back down sets for 3-5 sets of 3-5 reps. Then I do some form of volume rest pause work.

For squats
Yoke Bar Pause Squats - Builds strength out of the hole and fixes my falling forward problem

Weak triceps
Double work ups and back downs on close-grip bench, then switch to competition grip for a final work up and back down.

EX:
A. Close Grip Bench
Work up to a max double
then back down to 2 x 4-5 w/ 90%
Work up to a max single from the 90% set
Then back down to a 1-2 sets of 2-3

B. Bench - Work up to a max double or single

It gives me plenty of volume and teaches me to drive as hard as possible to finish the lift when my triceps are tired.

For weak off the chest
Pause benches for sets of 1, 2, or 3
Wide-Grip pause bench for sets of 6

And something new I have been trying that seems to being a good job is Banded Pause bench held for 2 sec 1 inch off the chest, than fire it up.

What about cycle planning?

Talk about your favorite methods of bringing them up.

high volume, low volume, High frequency, high intensity, planned over training, movements during warm ups, ect.

For example when I find I have a glaring weakness in a certain area I like to take 1 movement than I know will fix the problem and I work the hell out of it.

For instance I have weak glutes and hams so I pick the cambered Bar GM.

I work up to a max double
Then do:
3 x 5 w/ 90%
2 x Max/rest 15/Max/rest/max

or
Max double
2 x 4-5 w/ 90%
Max single
1-2 x 2-3 w/ 90%
1 x 5-4-3-2-1 w/ about 60-70%

It fixes my problems fast. But I only use this technique for my weak areas.

Bench:

Close grip board presses
Any/All fat bar work

Squat & Deads

GHR with bands or added weight
Heavy GM’s
Dimmel deads
Anything with bands and chain