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High Load Training Using Single Ply to Overload


#1

Hello I’m new here but have been competing for 13yrs. I have been testing out a theory in combination with high loading that the Bulgarian method utlizes to acheave max performance In comp. Now I have been doing and working to a 90% to 95% single on squat. This is strictly pertaining to the squat due to the large muscles involved and the “enhanced” athlete; would utilizing a squat suit( super centurion straps down) to over load the squat quite like the sling shot does on the bench; lead to higher total weekly vol that could be precisely lifted thus hopefully leading to an increase in hypertrophy without and increas in repitions. I.e. Say squatting mon heavy to 95% single then raw with wraps wed to 90% single and sat 90% single pause squat( either with box or without.)

I’m 220 but cut to 198 for a powerlifter I have abs wife is a bodybuilder so lots of eggs. Better then any protein shake if you can eat enough of them.
Best lifts in comp are
722sq raw w/w
402 bench
745dl


#2

I’ve recently started experimenting with something similar - but I’m much less experienced and way weaker than you are - and I’ve been working over three week blocks rather than one week. Check out my log if you want to see how I’ve been doing it.

I think your theory holds up, but I think one fairly important part would be using your raw numbers for the percentages when using the suit. That way effectively when you’re hitting that 95% single straps down, the suit makes it so your body is moving a lighter load while you feel the real load on your back.

You’d probably also want to seriously reduce your deadlift volume.


#3

I don’t know about using a squat suit to get more volume in, but it could work as an overload exercise to get used to handling weights above your raw 1rm. Josh Bryant said he did exactly that with Matt Sohmer. If you’re only doing singles then there won’t be a lot of hypertrophy going on.

Josh Bryant’s video on Matt Sohmer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fuSqjrSMnJQ


#4

If you have a mono lift or power rack, I’d suggest overhead bands and not briefs or straps down. The groove in the gear will not be friendly to your raw groove.


#5

This mostly. However yes, overloading the squat not and then can lead to increased hypertrophy and strength gains, though i’d use it more as a secondary movement and not the primary. Ex: regular squats, then briefs / reverse bands for some volume.


#6

The difference is that you are actually feeling 100% of the weight through the whole ROM of the lift with briefs or a suit. Some lifters and coaches like Mike Tuchscherer use wraps as an overload for people who squat without wraps, I have tried that and it throws off my technique as well and I was not able to squat below parallel. I think it’s worth experimenting with any of these methods, a suit or briefs will probably have the biggest learning curve but there also seems to be a large potential for carryover to your competition squat.


#7

If what we’re referring to here is overloading the concentric, then bands will work better. There is no need to overload the eccentric. That would be a different method. You feel 100% of the weight when you unrack it no matter what.

You cannot load the hips the same in gear as you do raw since the briefs tighten everything up. In gear, with the hips much tighter, you will not feel the weight the same as being out of that gear. The hips are tighter in the gear allowing them to contract harder. Raw doesn’t have that luxury so I don’t see the point of using briefs.

Bands allow you to keep the same raw groove. You have to push back to much harder in briefs for them to work or you get pushed forward. You don’t push back that hard going raw.

Bands will stop working at a certain point in the lift and then its all you. If you’ve ever done this kind of work with a weight well past 100% of your max, you know what I mean. It’s insane how heavy it feels.

Briefs are not worth experimenting unless you are planning on competing in gear. The groove and method is completely different.

And like Corstijeir said, “once in a while”. I struggle with my lockout as a raw bencher so I started doing heavy 5’s with my Titan Magnum every week. Now I have a right shoulder strain because of it. I think its worth doing, but in moderation.


#8

I don’t think that you are necessarily wrong, but the idea of using a squat suit or briefs as an overload movement is pretty similar to using knee wraps is you squat without them normally. One reduces knee extension demands, the other affects hip extension - same difference. Either one will take time to get used to. It might not work for everyone, but it worked for Matt Sohmer and he holds the IPF 120kg junior squat record and held the open record as well until Dennis Cornelius and Anthony Harris came along. I hear that some people like reverse bands while others don’t, all these methods can potentially work and it’s up to you to figure out what works for you. I’m not about to go out and but a squat suit anytime soon.

I have used reverse bands, I’m not sure if I got anything out of them. The problem there is that you aren’t actually supporting all the weight through the whole ROM. Suit/briefs/wraps will make the bottom of the lift easier in a similar way, but your back is still supporting the weight. I can see arguments in favor of all of these methods, people use them all with success so you can’t say they don’t work but maybe one works better than anther for you for whatever reason.


#9

Watch the video that I linked above, 5:50 is where he starts talking about using a suit to overload the squat. He says that there is a huge learning curve with the suit, but the psychological advantage of handling so much over Matt’s max (over 900lbs.) had a big impact. Presumably Josh was not concerned about squatting to depth. He also had Matt do this once every 4 weeks.

So here is the question: is it better to overload your squat with a method that uses the exact same technique as your competition squat but reduces the actual weight on the lower portion of the lift, or use a method that changes your technique but you hold 100% of the weight all the way through? Personally, I would go with reverse bands just to keep things simple but the other options work too.


#10

Wow thanks so much for all the responses. (Did not think it would be this popular lol but it’s an excellent discussion on concentric vs eccentric training). I believe your correct that overloading the concentric motion may not help as much as using reverse bands, however; the CNS will feel the same as it does when the weight is unracked. The load would feel the same proably around the last (eccentric) part of the squat about 75 to 80% of the way up. I see a lot of great fact supported arguments, but we are all forgetting one huge factor . Cns overload, fetigue and that effect of constantly training heavy on the cns.

The main problem I had with training with bands and other forms or functions of minipulating the rom and motion of the squat ( using bands wraps and gear). There is a very good study on ndbi about how as the cns becomes fatigued, kenithetic awareness decreases tremendously. The whole goal whole training system and our discussion would be to analyze and scrutinize all types of training systems and programs and for all of us to see if we can make something new and revolutionary. what would provide the greatest returns and balance whilst providing us greater kenithetic awareness with large loads for prolonged periods of the mesocycle and minimal need for recovery without resting or deloading as much.( let’s let the gains flow :))That’s what powerlifting is all about. I’m not saying that I know something everyone else doesn’t just everyone is experienced and we can all take away great knowledge Based on all our experiences.


#11

The Three Mechanism for Hypertrophy

  1. Mechanical Tension: This is “Limit Strength Training” via heavy load and low reps.

  2. Muscle Damage: This involves pushing an exercise to failure INFREQUENTLY, full range movement that stretch the muscles “Under Load”, eccentrics, etc.

  3. Metabolic Stress: This mechanism is the dominate factor increasing muscle mass.

Metabolic Stress is created with moderate to high repetitions for moderate to low loads and short rest periods between sets, “The Pump”.

Squatting Heavy Singles

This is one of the components (Mechanical Tension) needed for Hypertrophy. However, the DOMINATE factor is inducing Metabolic Stress.

Metabolic Stress is MANDATORY for optimal gains.

Thus, your results are limited if you are only performing Heavy Singles.

Squat Suit

Yes, it elicits virtually the same effect as the Sling Shot and Accommodation Resistance (Band and/or Chains).

“The difference is that you are actually feeling 100% of the weight through the whole ROM of the lift with briefs or a suit.” chris_ottawa

The Squat Suit (nor do Band/Chain) allow you to complete overload the full range of a movement 100%. However, it does allow you to overload the movement through a greater range of he exercise.

Research shows that ONLY 1/3 of any exercise is “Overloaded”; the remaining 2/3 of the movement is “Underloaded”.

Increased Volume

Wearing a Squat Suit in training doesn’t exactly increase volume. As chris_ottawa noted in his post.

The Squat Suite DECREASES the loading in the bottom part of the Squat. That means the additional load used in the Squat essentially is Decreased in the bottom part of you Squat to what it would be without the suit.

However, the the load is INCREASED it the top part of your Squat when wearing a Squat Suit.

The Squat Suit DECREASES the load in the bottom part; INCREASING it in the top part.

Training in a Squat Suit is an Accommodation Resistance Method, as is the Sling Shot and the use of Band/Chains.

The Issues With Hypertrophy Training Method

Traditional Hypertrophy Training: It increases muscle mass. However, with Traditional Hypertrophy Training there is an initial decrease in “Limit Strength” and Power.

An Effective Alternative

Research (Drs Jon Oliver and Greg Haff) have demonstrate a method that allows you to increase muscle mass, “Limit Strength”, and Power via…

Cluster Set Training

As you may know, Cluster Set are rest periods between repetition in a single set.

Rest Periods between Repetition in Custer Sets are 20 to 40 Seconds.

Guidelines

  1. Strength Cluster: Low Reps, 1 -2 in the Cluster, 40 second rest periods, with load of 70 to 90% of 1 Repetition Max.

Example of 6 Rep Cluster Set

  1. Preform 2 Reps, rest 40 seconds.

  2. Perform 2 Reps, rest 40 Seconds

  3. Perform 2 Reps. This is the end of the Cluster Set.

  4. Power Cluster Set: Low Reps, 1 - 2 in the Cluster, 15 to 40 second rest periods, with moderate loads (48 - 62% of 1 Repetition Max)

Example of 6 Rep Cluster Set

  1. Preform 2 Reps, rest 10 to 40 seconds.

  2. Perform 2 Reps, rest 10 to 40 seconds.

  3. Perform 2 Reps. This is the end of the Cluster Set.

Rest 2 to 3 minute or more for the next Cluster Set

30 Hypertrophy Cluster Sets: Moderately Higher Repetitions of 6 in the Cluster, with rest periods of 10 to 20 seconds.

Example of 18 Rep Cluster Set

This method (Research Jon Oliver) allows you to maintain “Limit Strength” and Power while Increasing Muscle Mass, via Volume.

Three Cluster Set of 18 Rep X 3 Sets = 54 Reps In The Exercise,

  1. Preform 6 Reps, rest 10 to 20 seconds.

  2. Perform 6 Reps, rest 10 to 20 seconds.

  3. Perform 6 Reps. This is the end of the Cluster Set.

Rest 2 to 3 minute or more for the next Cluster Set

Compensatory Acceleration Training, CAT (Dr Fred Hatfield)

Each rep in a Cluster Set need to be performed explosively.

Doing so engages and works the Fast Type IIa and “Super” Fast Type IIb/x Muscle Fiber.

Rep Termination

Fast Twitch Muscle Fiber is exhausted quickly, runs out of ATP/“Gas”.

Continuing reps in a Cluster Set once exhaustion occurs means you are NOT training Fast Twitch Muscle Fiber.

Research (Dr Greg Haff) demonstrated that 79.8% of ATP is restored to the muscle being worked within about 20 to 40 seconds.

Thus, short rest periods between Cluster Set Reps restore ATP ensuring Fast Twitch Muscle Fiber are being worked and greater Power Output is achieved.

Kenny Croxdale


#12

This is somewhat off topic as the original question was regarding hypertrophy, but do you see a significant advantage in terms of neural or psychological benefits from using either reverse bands, knee wraps, or a squat suit/briefs to overload the squat? I’m really wondering at this point.

A few years back there was some discussion on this exact topic on the RTS forum, Mike Tuchscherer said that he preferred knee wraps, or slingshot for bench, above other methods but according to his the next best option was bands (non-reverse setup) or chains. He said he doesn’t like reverse bands because they help to keep you in the groove rather than forcing you to stay in position, but Mark Robb (who is a world record holder and RTS coach) actually prefers reverse band squats and has gotten good results from them. There was no mention of squat suits or briefs, the only time I have heard anyone other than Josh Bryant discuss this as an overload method for raw lifters was an article on EltieFTS a few years back.

To me, bands anchored at the bottom don’t really provide any significant psychological advantage because the bar weight is still less than your max and only feels extra heavy at the top, I imagine that chains would be similar but I have never used them. However, bands are useful for correcting sloppy technique because they will throw you off if you get out of position as you come up. Reverse bands sound good in theory, but seeing as only the very top of the lift actually has you holding more than your max, I’m not sure that they are significantly better than heavy squat walkouts or bench holds, which Fred Hatfield used extensively and are still used by some lifters. As far as squat suits and briefs, the effect should be something similar to using a slingshot for bench. When I first used the slingshot I found that it threw off my technique slightly but I was still able to handle well over my 1rm, I suppose that a relatively loose suit or pair of briefs would have a similar effect. As far as knee wraps, I hate them, I have yet to break parallel in them, and the only time ever had IT band pain was after squatting in wraps. But of course it would make sense to use wraps if you are going to use a suit or briefs.


#13

::Part 1

Accommodating Resistance Methods

I am a proponent of the use of Accommodating Resistance Training Method.

To reiterate, research shows that ONLY around 1/3 of an Exercise Movement “Overload” the muscle involved. Source: Ariel, G., Principles of Ballistic Motion In Resistance Exercises, Understanding the Scientific Bases behind our Universal Centurion, pp 16-17, 1974.

The remaining 2/3 “Underload” the muscle involved in an Exercise Movement.

“Underloaded” Exercises means not all of the muscle fiber are worked, specifically the Type IIb/x “Super” Fast Muscle Fiber.

Muscle fiber that are not worked don’t grow in size or strength.

Thus, one of the benefits of Accommodation Resistance that it ensure muscle are worked though a greater range of the Exercise; more muscle fiber are worked and developed.

With that said, any Accommodating Resistance Method that is implemented at some point in one training is effective (Squat Suit, Sling Shot, Band/Chains, Reverse Band Loading and one of my favorite Bungees (more on that in a second),etc.

Neural and/or Psychological Benefits

I am sure there are neural and psychological benefits with Accommodation Resistance.

I question the different effects of the various method. I have not found any data that examines the subtle difference of the various method.

So, like you I wonder but have no answers.

Kenny Croxdale


#14

Part 2

Tuchscherer

I’m not clear on what he means by “Reverse band keeping you in the groove rather than in position”.

To me staying in the groove and in position are synonymous.

Example

In Squatting, Bench Pressing and Deadlifting, when I execute the lift correctly, it feel like I am pushing/pulling the weight on rails (like on a Smith Machine).

The bar feel like it is gliding up, in “The Groove”, the bar is in the right position.

Thus, by my definition being in “The Groove” or right “Position” is the same.

Mark Robb and Josh Bryant

The method they use with Robb’s Reverse Bands or Bryant’s “Overloading” with a Squat Suit another Accommodating Resistance variation.

I see it as a personal preference choice. The general overall effect is essentially elicits the same effect.

Kenny Croxdale


#15

:Part 4

Band/Bungee Anchoring and Chains

As you noted, the purpose of Accommodation Resistance is to overload the muscle in an exercise though a greater range of the movement.

Accommodation Resistance also elicits a Post-Activation Potentiation (PAP) Effect; eliciting greater Power Output in the bottom position.

Accommodating Resistance dependent on the loading of the Bands/Bungees or Chains provide you with the same effect as Reverse Band or Heavy Walk Out in a Squat.

The various Accommodating Resistance Method can provide you with a neural and psychological response.

Kenny Croxdale


#16

Part 5

Bungees

One of the best investment I made was in purchasing a Bungee System from Mike Berry/Strength Cats Training System, about 15 years ago. Berry wrote some great research strength training article on the use of Accommodating Resistance.

Bungee are similar to Bands. However, Berry’s System allows the Bungees to be implemented a bit differently.

One of the unique method in which Bungees are more effective than Bands is with…

Bungee Functional Explosive-Isometric Training

Bungees come in different length and thicknesses. Berry system utilizes a “Three D Ring”. This allows you to quickly and easily increase the Bungee Resistance by attaching it lower or higher on the D Ring", as well as attaching more than on set of Bungees.

Functional Isometrics is traditionally implemented by setting the bar up at a certain position in rack. Then setting a pin a few inches higher.

You progressively load the bar, driving the bar into the upper pin, then holding it in there Isometrically for a few seconds.

However, when ramming lighter, you slam into the upper pin. It doesn’t feel in Bench Pressing and it is especially unpleasant in Squatting.

Attaching the right size Bungee at on the right D Ring setting, allow you to explode up off the lower pin as hard and fast as you can.

There is NO “Whiplash” effect with Bungee Functional Explosive-Isometric Training as with the traditional method.

As you drive the bar up, it quickly decelerate to the point of being in an unmovable partial Bench Press or Squat position. You then perform a Isometric Hold for a few seconds.

The Bungees quickly “Overload” a the Functional Explosive-Isometric, let’s say Bench Press or Squat, depending on how you have set up the Bungees.

The Bungee Loading can be easily, quickly adjusted by hooking it to a lower or higher setting.

Sticking Point Training

Bungee Functional Eplosive-Isometric Training is effective at working the sticking point in a movement.

It allows you to work on driving through you sticking point with speed/power and also increase strength specifically at your sticking point.

With that said, the the Sticking Point isn’t where the bar stop moving. It is a couple of inches below.

Car Analogy

A car run out gas and will coast. Thus, where the car stop isn’t where it ran out of gas. It ran out of gas earlier.

[/\quote]I imagine that chains would be similar but I have never used them. [/quote]

The use of Band, Chain or Bungees is essentially the same. It more of a personal choice.

[quote]However, bands are useful for correcting sloppy technique because they will throw you off if you get out of position as you come up. [quote[

That applies to Band, Chain and Bungees.

['quote]Reverse bands sound good in theory, but seeing as only the very top of the lift actually has you holding more than your max, I’m not sure that they are significantly better than heavy squat walkouts or bench holds, which Fred Hatfield used extensively and are still used by some lifters. As far as squat suits and briefs, the effect should be something similar to using a slingshot for bench. [/quote]

The are work. It like driving home. There are usually several different way of getting home that are the same distance and get you there in the same amount of time.

Take the way home (Accommodation Resistance Training Method in this case) that you prefer.

[quote]When I first used the slingshot I found that it threw off my technique slightly but I was still able to handle well over my 1rm, I suppose that a relatively loose suit or pair of briefs would have a similar effect. As far as knee wraps, I hate them, I have yet to break parallel in them, and the only time ever had IT band pain was after squatting in wraps. But of course it would make sense to use wraps if you are going to use a suit or briefs.
[/quote]

Bar Path Trajectory

Any of these method will modify the Bar Path Trajectory for various reasons.

Another interesting fact that muscle firing sequence changes when different load are used.

The muscle firing sequence with a moderately heavy load is different from a near max heavy load.

Thus, training with moderate load to develop technique for a max effort 1 Repetition Max is a not a good idea.

Baseball Batter Anaolgy

Practice hitting a 60 mph ball make you good at hitting a 60 mph ball.,

Practicing at hitting a 60 mph ball so you can hit a 90 mph fast ball is optimal.

To get good at hitting a 90 mph fast ball, you need to practice hitting a 90 mph ball.

Obviously, you start with the 60 mph ball and progressively work your way up to the 90 mph ball.

Kenny Croxdale


#17

I agree that they are synonymous, it seems that you misunderstood what I said and maybe I wasn’t clear enough.

I said “position” rather than repeating “groove” for the sake of not sounding too redundant, what I mean is that reverse bands are quite forgiving (compared to straight weight) if you get out of groove as they seem to help you stay balanced. Bands anchored at the bottom will throw you off balance even more if you drift forward.

Anyway, I think I will try using reverse bands on squats every second week. I was considering giving knee wraps another shot but I really don’t like them and they won’t have any advantage in terms of technique development either.


#18

Reverse Bands VS Anchored Bands

Yes, Band might influence the position more so that straight weight.

I don’t see how Reverse Band vs Anchored Bands would be any different providing the loading is the same with each method.

Lets’s bar weight in the Top Upright Position is the same with Reverse Bands and Anchored Bands and if the Bottom Position is the same with Reverse and Anchored Band.

That would essentially mean the loading from the Bottom to the Top of the Squat would be the same.

The effort to “Maintaining Position” would be the same due to the fact that the resistance would be the same.

Incorporating Accommodation Resistance Training into one program elicits a greater training response; that is especially true for Power “Speed” Training.

The key is to just do it; chose whatever method you prefer.

Knee Wraps

Bands, Chains, Bungees, Sling Shot, Squat Suit as well as Knee Wraps will modify the Bar Path Trajectory. Your technique the firing sequence of the muscle in the movement will be altered.

You become more proficient with in your method of chosen.

SBD Knee Bands

I don’t train with Knee Wraps.

I use the SBD Knee Bands. They provide some tightness but not to the extent of Knee Wrap.

The right sizing for the SBD Band is to purchase two size smaller that you measurement. As an example, my Knee Size is Medium. I purchased the Extra Small.

It took me twenty minute to get the SBD on the first time. I now get them on in about two minutes.

It require more work to get the SBD Knee Band if you have large calves.

I have NO calves, so it requires less work for me to get them on.

Kenny Croxdale


#19

We would need someone with a degree in physics to fully explain the effects of different band setups on bar path, but the way I see it is that straight weight is only affect by gravity, which is a strictly vertical force. Bands anchored at the bottom should only be a vertical force as (normally) you should have your feet at approximately the same point where the bands are anchored. However, if you have a tendency to lean forward excessively, aka good morning squat, the bands will no longer be pulling straight down but rather on an angle and in my experience this makes the squat much more challenging. It’s not a huge effect as long as you don’t have excessive band tension, but it’s enough to notice it for sure. After a few experiences of this, your body seems to learn that leaning too far forward is not a good idea.
As for reverse bands, they are much more forgiving in that way and seem to pull the bar back towards where they are anchored if you happen to lean forward. That might actually be a good thing if you are using them to squat a weight that is over your 1rm.

Anyway, that’s my experience with bands.

I have SBDs too, but I didn’t buy an extra small size. However, I have big calves so if they were more than one size down I’m not sure if I could even get them on. I have heard that Titan Yellow Jacket knee sleeves are very similar to SBDs but they are not tapered as much so they are easier to put on than SBDs. However, they are not quite as durable. I might buy a pair for a meet still, if I can get another 10-20lbs. out of them then why not?


#20

Rob Hall, Single Ply Squat Suit Overload