T Nation

Looking to Get Into Powerlifting

Dont complicate things yet. You don’t have the base, background or experience.

At the beginner stage of the game you need a linear progression program. I suggest you buy Starting Srength and Practical Programming for Strength Training both by Mark Rippetoe.

5/3/1 is good but progression is too slow for a beginner. It’s geared more towards an intermediate lifter. Plus the training weights calculate off a max which I doubt you could even perfrom correctly at this stage.

Westside (which I’m using now) is really designed for a more advanced lifter whose orm is dialed in and who can assess his weaknesses. Beginners have no weaknesses, theya re just generally weak.

For a good linear periodization routine study Ed Coan and Mike Bridges. I used their methods in the past with a fair amount of success.

If you are a good natural deadlifter and can tolerate a ton of work look up John Kuc.

Good luck

1 Like

I have mainly been doing high rep. Then lately i have switched to doing 5x5 for bench squat and deadlift.

I have been doing 5x5 right now and i was looking to just do a strength program right now. Right now im 215, not sure what weight class im aiming to compete in yet. Like i said im just looking for a strength gaining program.

Sorry, I don’t see anywhere that you say that specifically (unless you are simply referring to your response to me). Powerlifting itself is a demonstration of strength, thus many routines will be focused on peaking for a competition, not necessarily maximizing your long term strength gains.

Anyway, I think people here have presented some solid programs! I would think after several years you are at the point where you could give 5/3/1 a shot, so that’s my vote.

@johngym just to satisfy my own curiosity (sorry OP, minor hijack) did you incorporate twice weekly squatting and benching in 5/3/1? Rep PRs? Multiple FSL sets? Just curious, because I’ve found 5/3/1 gets me stronger but it helps a ton to do all that.

1 Like

I’m curious as well. I honestly can’t fathom how one would have to go about setting up 5/3/1 to get weaker.


oh no sorry i was just saying it again. and thank you i really appreciate it all

Not sure how many have stated this, but good form/technique is what you should be shooting for right now. I wouldn’t necessarily worry about the weight on the bar as long as you work on good technique.

If you’re relatively new to PL’ing, I don’t know that I’d suggest a program right out of the gate. I think it’s more important that you find a weight that allows you to move it with good technique each rep but still makes you work hard. So find a weight that makes you work hard but still allows you to use good technique; preferably for sets of 5 at least one set and no more than 5 sets. Do that for 4 weeks with the same weight. On week 5, try and hit 1 max rep set. If you can do 8 or more, bump the weight up 10-20lbs and start over.

If you feel you need to program after that then by all means do so. I’d rather see you learn good technique first before diving into a program with percentages and such without really having a good base built first.