T Nation

Q on Waterbury program

In his new article, Chad says that light explosive workouts are used to increase recovery from maximal weight workouts. On explosive days for this program, are the weights supposed to be so light that they would not work on adding muscle and just facilitate recovery, or is Chad realy putting a hypertrophy phase into this along with the maximal strength phase?

Read everything by Dave Tate on this website then check out elite fitness to understand Chad’s program.

I believe Chad suggested using the dynamic method to increase the amount of times you lift per week because you rarely get DOMS from lifting explosively. Then I assume you can begin adding in use of the repeated effort so you have a program much similar to the Westside protocol, but obviously altered to fit your sport, goal and need. I use a program just like it for football and love it, it gets the job done.

The explosive training serves two purposes, one is recovery the second is to increase explosive strength levels using approximately 50% of your 1RM. Explosive strength levels are lacking in the majority of trainees I see around the country.
Hypertrophy training could also be used but the recovery benefit wouldn’t be as great.

Is there any advantage to having explosive strength for a bodybuilding program, or is it simply something that would be useful only for competitive athletes. Technically, you’re saying that it would be possible to do a hypertrophy training phase as well, but it would take more of a toll on recovery. Wouldn’t that benefit anyway since there is a demand on the body to recover from this?

Good points. First off, explosive work will build muscle but probably not as much as hypertrophy work, initially. The reason I recommend explosive work initially is that most trainees are lacking it, and it takes less of a toll on recovery when adding more workouts. Follow that? In other words, just because you increase upper body work to 5 times per week doesn’t mean the body will recover. The progression needs to be intelligently planned. Therefore, if you are only performing upper body work once each week, you would be better off adding explosive work as your second upper body workout instead of hypertrophy training since it is less demanding and breaks down less muscle tissue. After 3-4 weeks, you could add in hypertrophy work as your second workout. Explosive training will lead to more muscle eventually due to increased levels of strength. Remember, there are many types of strength and you need to increase as many of them as possible if you want optimum strength and muscle gains.
Hopefully, this will clear up any confusion. Let me know if not.

Chad, could you give a sample routine for, say, chest using this protocol? THanks.

MBE: "Explosively enlightened since 1560."


I’m not sure what you mean by protocol. Do you want hypertrophy or explosive guidelines? Therefore, I will give both. Here is a sample chest routine for Maximal Strength and Explosive Performance:

Monday: Bench Press 6 sets x 3 reps, 120s rest between sets
Thursday: Explosive Push-ups 10 sets x 3 reps, 60s rest between sets

For Hypertrophy and Strength:
Monday: Bench Press 6 sets x 3 reps, 120s rest between sets
Thursday: DB 30 degree Incline Press, 5 sets x 6 reps, 90s rest between sets

Hope this helps!

Thank you for your quick and thorough response, Chad. Supposing I want to use this to map out an entire workout, how many exercises would you say I should use per session for Strength and hypertrophy? I’m thinking 2-4 total. Thanks again.

MBE: “Down wit HST, yeah you know me. I’ll keep you up to date on my shocking and controvesial use of Bryan Haycock’s program since monday.”


20 total sets on Maximal or Hypertrophy Day
30 total sets on Explosive Training Day

These are starting guidelines. Adjust as necessary while staying close to the original parameters.

I’ve thrown car-pushing into my routine to supplement my leg-work in the gym. First time I was pretty sore, but after that (and proper nutrition) I’ve noticed that my “off-the-line” speed is really improving. I think that car-pushing is mostly concentric, because you’re not going fast enough to suffer from the damage you would from sprinting.

Thanks a lot Chad, I’ve got to admit that I’m a bit miffed about this program, as I’ve jsut started HST and really, really want to try the MIB (More is Better but MIB sounds cooler and hundreds of alien refs can be made)protocol. Oh, kickass guest Atomic Dog. Lata.

MBE: "Solid Space Monkey since 1969."