T Nation

Reactive Strength Development


Gonna start getting some info together to write an article on developing reactive strength. I'm going to take a day sometime soon and record a bunch of crazy ass exercises. Here is one of them:

More to come!


I suppose I'm ignorant, but what would be the reasoning for training this as it relates to powerlifting?


The same reason people do box squats, speed work, use reverse bands, and about a billion other tools in the toolbox. To build reactive strength. This is basically the ability to overcome the reactive forces of your body when performing a physical task. Like slowing the bar down to quickly reverse it into the concentric phase during a squat or a bench. If you are not in control of the reactive forces during eccentric/amortization phases then you get buried under whatever weight is in your hands/on your back.

The reactive force that needs to be overcome in the above video is force generated when my feet hit the ground right before the jump onto the 20inch tire. Thats a 75lb bar on a 280lb body. The reactive force of the ground when my feet hit is probably about double that weight. Overcoming that force builds reactive strength.

This is the first time I have tried this exercise so the transition from landing to jumping is a little slower than I would like it to be.


So you want to spend as little time in the squat position as possible right? Why not jump into at full squat?


Yes, the shorter the time spent transitioning the higher the reactive forces (and the harder the second jump becomes). I assume you mean just a jump into a full squat, then jump to a higher surface? Yes you can do that. There are literally thousands of combinations that you could come up with for reactive strength building exercises. I like the kneeling jumps because you are forced to land in a full squat.


Looking forward to the series, STB. We do a lot of this stuff in our Parkour training to develop the SSC and increase our jumps, as well.


I really hope you include some stuff for upper body too. I see a bunch of stuff for rfd for legs, but hardly any for upper body. Like others have said, I look forward to seeing the series.


Will the article be published here?


It probably won't be published anywhere. I might just throw it up on my blog for people to steal. haha. Haven't even started working on it other than just messing around with some exercise ideas.


I'd still like to see it. Could you post a link when (if) you finish?


I just found this:

and this one


More awesomeness:




I would love to see this article if you do it.


Loving this idea. I've subscribed to your YouTube channel and I check out your blog whenever I can. Can't wait to read your article. If and when you finally finish it, it should definitely be on here.



An upper body pressing movment I have been working on:


That looks fun!


Going to start implementing some of this into my leg training. Watching the Phil Harrington box jump video just inspired me like no other


I was there when that was filmed. Some of the shit he did was absolutely ridiculous.


have you ever tried the reactive/contrast method with heavy-light sets?