T Nation

Perfect Rep for Powerlifting


hey guys,
I'm trying doing Christian Thibedau's perfect rep style routine for powerlifting. It basically involves lifting the weights as fast as possible and solely concentrating on bar speed and how you feel. Some days you do more sets some days you do less sets depending on how you feel. Your reps are usually between 1-3. You ramp up the weights like for bench I might start off at 135x3, then 155x3, then 175x3, 195x3, 205x3, 215x3, 230x3(approximately 70% of my max) then go back to 205 or 215x3 then go back to 230x3 and so on until I get a feeling that i've done enough.
I've only been on this program a couple weeks but am curious as to what your thoughts are. At most i'm lifting about 70% of my 1RM when speed starts to slow. It seems as if this program is pretty much a "dynamic day" each time. Have you guys had success w/ this style of training when you don't do any "heavy" 80%+ lifting?

my routine
day 1
Power squat
Bench Press

Day 2
oly Squat
Bench Press
Shoulder Press

day 3
Oly squat
RDL (Every other week do sumo deadlift)
Bench Press


back work?


None, except for deadlifts


Um... that sounds like you're just doing Dynamic Effort...


If explosiveness is your only problem, then it seems to be a damn good program.


for powerlifting though, he's gonna need more than just speed work, even if he's doing speed work slightly above the usual % range


I do believe that Christian actually talked about what would be done differently in order to apply this to PL though... At least a little bit. It would make more sense to ask him in his training questions thread if you haven't already.

Just sumo DL and RDL as back work strikes me as a bad idea for your shoulder health and benching strength, especially if you plan on doing this for more than a few weeks.

Thanks for the replies, I posted the question in Thib's forum. I'll start doing face pulls again, probably just do em on my days off, I find even just doing two powerlifts for all those sets, i spend allot of time in the gym.

In terms of lifting heavier, I'm thinking maybe every 3rd week, I could do stuff in the 90% range, perhaps just sticking to prilepin's chart and doing singles in 90% and 90%+ focusing on lifting as fast as possible, avoiding any grinder reps.
I do fear on this proggie that despite the explosion I develop with the weights, that they will feel much heavier than they used too, tris may get weaker as the load at the top of the bench may be insufficient, the core gets weaker as it is not used to lifting heavy loads. But who knows.


I'll be interested to hear your results and how you modified it. Keep bringing the updates.


This is essentially how I started out about 1 year ago, but with time my program morphed into something more like a bastardized westside/531. Basically what I found was really good strength gains, but eventually I started pushing the weight into a max effort range anyway, and then had to take a little down time to recover. If you figure out a good way to hold back so to speak and not get overtrained by going heavier faster than you are progressing (ie bar speed slows down) then it ought to work well with the exception maybe of your bench pressing as you may not develop strength off the chest while relying on stretch reflex for perfect rep type pressing. Honestly though just doing some sort of linear progression like 531 or others and incorporating the idea of the perfect rep may serve you better, as it will keep you from doing what I did.

Structure is sometimes good... unless you are very good at listening to your body... few of us are...


Read this dude: Its geared more towards pure strength.



So you want to train for maximal strength without much maximal or near maximal effort? And you want to stay healthy without addressing all the balance and prehab needs? Sounds like some study is in order. You are on the right track in the post above when you talk about the weights feeling heavier and losing lockout and core strength. A program that is fancy and "cutting edge" is not always a better program. If I was coaching you, I'd scrap this entire plan and start over. That's just my two cents here.

If you really want to get strong, I'd recommend reading stuff written by powerlifting coaches instead of bodybuilding coaches and using programs geared more toward strength sports than hypertrophy that address the specific needs of strength and power sports. Also, you're going to have to get comfortable using big weight. Check out Tate, Wendler, Simmons, Rippetoe, and some Poliquin stuff. Leave the bodybuilding stuff for bodybuilders and do the PL thing if you want to be successful at it.


everyone knows the best way to get strong is to lift light weights