T Nation

Hypertrophy and Strength/Skill Circuit

For those of you using CT’s Strength/Skill circuit, with the optional hypertrophy focus, I’m curious as to how you are setting up your splits and what the focus is. CT was definitely cautioning not to turn this into a full hypertrophy plan. I’m thinking that legs and shoulders are hit directly or indirectly for all 6 days, so a good focus is likely arms, chest and back. Let me know how you guys are handling.

Arms was pretty much what I did. But really it’s about doing work for your weakest link. Even if that link is shoulders, if they are a lagging part you can do some hypertrophy work for them. And if arms are a strong point you don’t do hypertrophy work for them even if the plan doesn’t hit them as much.

Thanks, CT. I think arms make perfect sense. I did a hypertrophy addition for legs last week and my legs were sore all week, so I think I went overboard there. I think I will re-focus on my arms, chest and lats, which are generally my weaker areas. Keep up the great work…

I´m doin
Day 1:
1a DB OH Press 3x8-10
1b Pull ups 3x6-8
1c Prowler Pushing 3x20m

Day 2:
1a Triceps Extension 3x8-10
1b BB Row 3x6-8
1c DB RDL 3x6-8

Day 3:
1a DB Benchpress 3x8-10
1b CG Chins 3x6-8
1c Farmer´s Walk 3x40m

Day 4:
1a Dips 3x8-10
1b T Bar Row 3x8-10
1c Leg Press 3x6-8

I think I’m going to start doing arms too and mixing in some conditioning work as well with more kettlebell swings and farmer walks.

At the moment, I’m doing:
Day 1 Squat/Bench/High Pull

1a Pek Dek Flyes 3x10
1b Rev Pek Dek Flyes 3x10
1c Rev Grip Barbell Row 3x8-10

Day 2 Deadlift/OHP/Snatch Grip High Pull

1a Close Grip Upright Rows 3x8-10
1b Wide Grip Band Upright Rows 3x10
1c Lat Pulldowns 3x10

Day 3 (same as Day 1):
1a Incline DB Benchpress 3x8-10
1b Seated Rows 3x10
1c Dips 3x6-8

Day 4 (same as Day 2):
1a Kettlebell Curls 3x10
1b Pull Ups 3x8-10
1c Dbl Shrugs

UTGladiator…it looks like you are hitting a few muscle groups each day after your lifts vs the 1 group CT suggests in his article. Are you having any issues with recovery? Also, are you incorporating an advanced technique, such as rest pause or drop sets, into your hypertrophy work, or are you keeping it more pump variety with no failure. Just curious…I am generally hitting 1 hypertrophy bodypart per day with an advanced method for 1-2 sets and that is it.

For the above two examples, you list 1a, 1b, 1c for the bonus work after the strength/skill circuit. So you are doing these as a circuit as well?

I’ve been using the template below. I typically do just 2 exercises on the strength/skill because of logistics initially, but I ended up liking the mix. I then do 2 days a week of a more typical push/pull split.

Day 1
SG High Pull / Bench press done as the 8x3 circuit

  1. Incline DB bench press 3x5-8
  2. Standing cable press 3x5-8
  3. Weighted Dips 3x5-8

Day 2
SG Muscle snatch / Deadlift done as the 8x3 circuit

  1. Weighted pull ups 3x5-8
  2. Seated Rows 3x5-8
  3. Curls 3x5-8

SG High Pull / OH Press done as the 8x3 circuit

  1. Lat raises 3x5-8
  2. Bent Over Lat raises 3x5-8
  3. Face pulls 3x5-8

SG Muscle Ups / Front Squat done as the 8x3 circuit

  1. Leg Press 3x5-8
  2. Leg Ext. 3x5-8
  3. Calves 3x5-8

Day 5: Total body pull (similar to a Best Damn template). 3x4-6.

  1. RDL
  2. Weighted pull ups
  3. Rows
  4. Curls

Day 6; Total body push (similar to Best Damn template). 3x4-6

  1. DB Bench press
  2. DB Shoulder press
  3. Dips
  4. Leg Ext.

I’ve been doing the strength circuits as CT listed. The three additional exercises I’m not doing as a circuit. I have been doing supersets though sometimes. I typically leaves 2 days for conditioning only focusing on core with 4-6 rounds of say farmers walk and sled push followed by 30 mins of steady state cardio. I’m just trying to tinker around with it. I’m almost done with the first full rotation and will do it again. My hypertrophy stuff might just focus on arms though.

this looks pretty epic

antiquity are you still training this way? btw should try EQI’s (basically controlled eccentric, pause 2-7 seconds then explode up) for the main lifts of sterngth/skill

more hypertrophy, skill imprveoment, recovery & mind muscle among other pluses

I really like the “strength/skill” training, but not the Best Damn templates. Those didn’t do it for me. I’m doing a 531 program now (Krypteia) that uses a big barbell lift supersetted with an assistance (like weighted pulls, dips, etc…). The reason I like the newer 531 ways of training (vs the older templates) is that you do sets of 5 of the big exercise (bench, dead, squat, OHP) each workout, supersetted with challenging assistance, which is often bodyweight training. I’ve found it to be the best of both worlds in that I am getting stronger from the big lifts (and the weights are prescribed and waved based on your training max) while still getting the fun/benefit of challenging bodyweight assistance.

Personally, I’ve never really liked “isolation” or “pump” training, which is why I didn’t really end up liking the Best Damn workouts. I like the big barbell lifts with: weighted pull ups/dips, push ups, HLR, roll outs, goblet squats, jumps/throws. I know CT has recently written about how certain people are drawn to certain ways of training, which I guess is true but I haven’t read those articles in enough detail to know if that matches up with his thoughts.

After I finish my current program in about 5 weeks, I will likely do CT’s strength/skill circuit or 6 weeks to superhero for a change of pace.