T Nation

Why is ME Not Ideal for Beginners?


What if I am a coach, and it just so happens that I am perfectly capable of teaching someone how to squat perfectly in just a few minutes? If trainers do not want beginners to get injured, why not just instruct their athletes to do certain movements with near perfect technique? Isn't the "you can get hurt with the max effort method unless you're advanced" dogma bullshit? Don't you think it's a little overrated?

What other reasons why the max effort method is not ideal for beginners?

Thank you!!


yeah very fucking overrated.

If you want to run a marathon just go out and run it tomorrow. Who gives a damn about conditioning.

Same thing with baseball players, I dont care if you pull your hamstring for the first half of the season just do a full all out sprint during the game.

Maybe you shouldn't be coaching if you think people should be training.


What do you think is the ideal (and/or quickest) way to condition someone to be able to handle max loads? And how long will it take for a novice trainee to go from 5x5 to westside with a max effort session?


Again with this? Really?


Oh don't worry about ME not being for beginners, OP.

And you won't need a spotter either as a beginner.

Besides, you're likely much stronger than you think you are.
Doing 300-400 pounds more than you normally use should do the trick.

I suggest waiting until the gym is mostly empty save a few weak, old people.
That way, there won't be any he... erm... distractions.

Report back with the results as soon as you can, we believe in you.


Why can't you answer your own question? I thought you knew everything.

From another thread:

If you'd absorbed even half of what you read, you'd know the answer to this question.


This subject seems a little too opinionated. I believe that I have read somewhere where Dave Tate stated that it is a myth that westside style training is only for advanced athletes... Whereas, some people think that doing an "advanced program" such as westside, is for athletes who already have a solid base of strength... Two perfect examples are Mark Rippetoe and Joe DeFranco. Mark Rippetoe believes that the fastest way to gain strength for a beginner is by doing the "heavy light medium program" by Bill Starr, and then all of a sudden, Joe D. created a training program for beginner westside trainees called "westside for skinny bastards", which instructs you to work up to a max triple during your max effort day...

Who the fuck should I believe??? I can't just absorb two opposing viewpoints. It's like trying burn and freeze myself at the same time.


x2; may I suggest some few, selected movements? Good mornings, back squats, bench press...but the best would be overhead squat! No need for warm up sets, since high-frequency training has already made your CNS ready to all-out efforts!


Check out this quote from Joe.

"Max Effort Upper Body Day - The max effort method is the best method for developing maximal strength. In my opinion, max effort work should be the "nuts and bolts" of any strength-training program. If you're weak, you're dead!"

It's well stated. He believes that any strength training program should have the max effort method in it. Does Mark Rippetoe, Madcow, and Bill Starr espouses the ME method? No. They look down at beginners like me as if we are not capable of anything other than doing 5 repetitions with the squat. What exactly have they accomplished? How many people have they trained who went from scrap to elite? Did you know that Mike Wolfe, only bench pressed 200 pounds his senior year? Look where he is today... He was mentored by the likes of Louie Simmons.


They "look down" at beginners using ME frequently, because they lack training experience and will do stupid shit. Who does this remind you of?..... Stop posting. Train more.


I think ME work for novices is alright. It can't be a repalcement for learning technique on competetive lifts. But it teaches you to treat weight like it just fucked your girl.

Very early on, I used a classic Westside-style template (DE bench, DE box squat, ME bench variant, ME SQ/DL/GM). I maxed every week- almost always a max single. This was training by myself using only what I learned from Louie Simmons and Dave Tate articles. Over about a year and a half of training, I went from a long, lanky but beer-gutted 210 lb to a leaner 245. My lifts went from about 250/200/unknown to 450/340/520 (belt/wraps). As such, ME work holds a fond place in my heart.


ive been training hard for only probably 3 years (sorta) dicked around for 2 before that. in november i started PLing. that was the first time ive ever did a max effort besides trap bar deadlift and like one sqat day, thats it man. so yeah i find ME work fine now that im getting better at PLing, but for a beginner, fuck no, captain kirk dont think so either, and if kirk kaworski dont think that, then it aint right

TYPE2B had prolly drank a beer with him and YolkedUp prolly beat the fuck out of him :slightly_smiling:


Because you can teach someone everything they possibly need to know about squatting. But you can't teach the feeling of squatting heavy ass weight. The same reason you cant teach someone how to drive a motorcycle and expect them to drive at high speeds


...Well, I guess newbs can get away with it... Which gives me the permission to go "Bulgarian" on my training. Oh yeah baby. Max loads 6 days a week.


facepalm :slight_smile:


Uh, yeah, why not. Let us know how that works out for you.


My advice to Type2B: Abandon this account. Do more reading. Make new account. Discuss intelligently.

You will get a lot more out of it.


I thought 5x5 does have a ME day hence the x3 on Fridays...or is that not a max effort lift?


I fixed it for you.


Why does anyone even respond to TYPETROLLB? He barely asks questions that can be discussed.