T Nation

Help Balancing Lifts


Hi Coach! I'll try to get to the point instead. I am 6,4 and I weigh around 230-240 lbs.
I have pretty long legs, torso and arms which probably puts me in a mechanical disadvantage on the big lifts.

I have been on the WS4SB for about a year, Wendler's 5/3/1 a couple of months. And some programs I've made myself. I simply love training and the science behind it.

My goal is to increase 1. Strength, 2. Power, 3. Size in that order.

My current routine looks like this:

1 Push:

Bench Press
DB Incline Press
BTN Press
Lateral Raises
Triceps Extensions

2 Pull:

Face Pulls
BB Curls
DB Curls

3 Legs:

Leg Press
Leg Curl
Calf Raises

Now to the problem:
My deadlift is 485 lbs, my bench press (medium grip) 285 lbs, and my squat (below parallel) is 240 lbs. All of the lifts are done raw: no straps, belt, nothing.

I always try to implement your perfect rep concept (lift as fast as possible while in control)

My question: how would you go about, training a former basketball player with a possible anterior pelvic tilt who has an easy time increasing gluteal, hamstring and hip strength but not in the quads? It's just like that Hockey player you mentioned before in your post. Tall, strength in the right places but simply wasn't built for squatting.

Thanks in advance Coach!


Assuming you were referring to back squats, try taking those out for awhile. Substitute them with bulgarian split squats (a unilateral movement). This will help recruit HTMUs better in the quads for a long limb individual like yourself.

And as a side note, basketball players naturally do not squat well. This is because basketball players do a lot of jumping and have more stable ankles. The squat requires more knee and lumbar stability (do you have a lumbar spine when squatting?).

In general though, you could get some nice quad development using unilateral exercises (single leg presses and extensions too).


Forgot to mention this . . . but train for strength using the perfect rep technique (with sets of 3 reps each set, ramping). The power will come along with that if you can incorporate explosive lifts (olympic and power lifts) with the lower reps. Do this for about two months. Then use similar lifts with a higher rep range but still accelerating the weight as much as possible on each rep (sets of 5-6 reps)--this will facilitate some size--use this for another month. Then go back to the strength/power goal with a different program for another month or two. Use this different program with higher reps once again (for size) for another two months.

To recap:

First two months: Train for strength/power
Next month: Train for size
Following one to two months (depending on how your body is feeling): Train for strength/power
Final two months: Train for size

For strength and power, train three to four days a week (depending on your schedule). For size, train four to five days a week (depending on your schedule).

Hope this helps bro!


Thanks a lot Eric! Definitely sounds logical that more unilateral work would recruit more muscle for people with long limbs. And yes my back starts to round off at the end of the Squat (if that is what you are referring to). I think its because I have pretty stiff hips coupled with the fact that I have Anterior Pelvic Tilt, giving me a large ass.

I will definitely give the split squat a try and try to incorporate some easy-to-learn Olympic variations for power increase at the beginning of my sessions. The two month on contrast thing is what I am currently doing. I did Wendler 5/3/1 for about 3-4 cycles and am currently on the above-mentioned routine for size.

Thanks a lot bro=)