T Nation

No Squats / Deloading Upper Body?


If I want to deload for a week would taking out squats for that week or at least replacing them with plyometrics be a form of deloading for the upper body as well. The way I see it as deloading for my upper body is my body doesn't have to recover from the heavy squats which I think would help with a quicker recover for the upper body. Also I can give my spine a break at this time as well, which I really think I could use at times. Thanks for any help..


I would never include plyo's in an off week. Plyo's are going to be more stressful then just doing the squats. I don't know what a typical training week looks like for you, but when I completely deload I like to hit 3 or 4 lifts with one around 90 percent or so of my 1RM and then walk away. With dynamic work I just cut the number of sets short, so from 12 doubles to 6 or so. I also cut out alot of the assistance work, or at least don't go balls out on it.

Deloading the spine is a valid point, but I feel like it would be better accomplished with some one leg work. Maybe do some easy lunges or something.

If you've been doing your job the other weeks of your mesocycle, you can and indeed should take it real easy on your deload to allow supercompensation to accumulate.


When I have a deload week I don't do any of my bench work or squat work, just light assistance exercises. Or you can do nothing and be happy you did 6 months from now when your still training strong w/ progress still being made. Just stick w/ light assistance work and you'll be fine. I deload my upper body and lower body in the same week so I can keep track during my squat and bench cycles.


A deload is a deload. You can't deload for lower body and not for upper or visca versa. During a deload week you want to avoid anything CNS intensive such as plyo's or max effort lifts. You also want to greatly decrease your volume. What i do is just singles on a compound lift and dont get to near a max. Then go home. No assistance work at all.