T Nation

Lifting Chains

Anyone know where I can get some lifting chains? Also, can anyone recommend some advice using them. Would like to use them for squats, benching, bent over rows, etc. But is there a system in which to use for sets/reps? Or any other excersize you can use them for. Thanks.

Man,
First you need to know why you are using them. Hint: Accomidating resistance. You can get chains a couple of ways, 1. If you have the money and want everything you need to come in a package, go to elitefts.com 2.You can get chain at a tractor supply store or anywhere they sale big farm type equipment. As far as using them goes, once again, if you are not experienced in the conjugate method (Westside), please go to elitefts.com and read all of the articles by Dave Tate, Louie Simmons and Jim Wendler. The articles should answer any questions you may have.

Chains are another weapon in the fight.
Hope this helps!

Look here or at EliteFTS for information on using the chains, and if you search google for “bands and chains” you should come up with Louie Simmon’s article on the hows and why’s of band and chain training.

You may want to consider bands. They serve essentially the same purpose but are more versatile in that they can be used for lots of standalone exercises (even at home). They are also easier to transport. Since I have to haul my stuff around bands are much easier to deal with than chain would be, and probably less conspicuous (I train at a commercial gym and I’m a little paranoid about doing anything too creative; I figure as long as the staff just sees rubber bands they won’t think I’m actually doing something hardcore, just got lost on the way to aerobics). Because of this I think they are a better deal for getting started with accomodating resistance. The heavy-guage chain is damned expensive, at least the retail prices I have seen, and I think the bands give you more for the money, especially if you’re not yet 100% sure what you’re planning to do with the stuff, you’ll be able to find more uses for bands if you’re not doing a straight Westside/powerlifting schedule.

Nick

Thanks, ya I checked out all of those articles and have an idea on how I will use them. Now its just a matter of getting my gym to let me.

Not trying to be picky here guys, but the bands and chains serve two different purposes. Yes they both accomodate resistance, but the bands add accelerated eccentrics to the lift, where the chains just lighten on the way down, they dont pull down like bands. I say get both if you can. The more variety the better.

I just ordered both from Elite along with the video on accomodating resistance. This will be my first venture into contrast training since starting Westside about eight months ago. Should be fun. And I lift at home so no PT’s to worry about.

The problem with bands is that they are pretty tiring on your CNS especially on bench which is hard on your shoulders you should cycle them with chains and straight weights. With squats you are more able to use them all the time but I still like to switch to chains now and then to give myself a deload as well as reducing the actual load.
Bands aren’t really recommended for beginners and you’d be best advised to use chains for a while first. But you wouldn’t be the first to ignore that advice and go straight for bands!

creed or anyone that has or currently using bands/chains. which one would you suggest be the best for developing explosive power, I’m not interested in gaining size or mass, could care less, my goal is to gain explosive power/quickness (size and mass will be a byproduct). or is it best to cycle between bands and chains for the best results. I might only be able to use bands, (also not a beginner).

You can get chains from a hardware store. If they don’t heve 5/8" then buy two 3/8". You save money on shipping and handling. You need about 10 feet each and a couple feet of thiner chain to make a loop.

If you can only get bands then thats alot better than nothing and will do more than chains alone. Just take it easy at first. Even not being new to lifting it is a very different experience to lifting straight.
But yes if you can get bands and chains this will be the best of all, and allow you to get the optimum results.

Thanks for the replies. I will probably start to incorporate the bands in the future. Should be interesting and fun using the bands while squatting on the bosu. :slight_smile:

If you have the money consider buying yourself a set of weight releasers which can also be brought at elitefts.com

Great for building explosive strength if you know how to use them.

If you don’t want to order the 5/8" chains from elitefts.com, you can go to the hardware store and get 3/8" chains for $50 less. You have to kind of rig them up so that it overlaps 5 times at the bottom or so to get good work out of it. You can hang a rope down from the bottom of your stroke and then double/triple/etc the chains up to the length that gets your whole stroke with the rope included. The part of the chain that doesn’t ever touch the ground is useless.

LBH,

just look in your local phone directory for chain specialty places. i found one here in atlanta that has all the sizes of chain. they are going to be roughly the same price as the EFS chains, minus the shipping. you can also buy smaller chain, and just use more of it. i found that 5/8" chain weighs about 20lbs. for 5’; 1/2" about 12lbs. for 5’; and 3/8" about 6lbs. for 5’. you could just go to home depot and get 6 - 5’ lengths of 3/8" to equal the same weight as 1 - 5’ length of 5/8". i would suggest getting them to cut the 3/8" into 5’ sections for ease of loading. that way you don’t have to loop a 15’ foot section 3 times. it would probably be easier to have them all in 5’ lengths. good luck.

-scott