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I wasn’t lying, some of our best blog posts and ideas come from questions we get from you guys!
Just like today’s post.
As I was coming back from South Korea I received an email asking could DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training really build the same strength as barbell exercises and if it could be a legit means of measuring your strength?
The question came as this coach had attended another fitness program where lifts like bench press and deadlift were used as their measures of “strength” (we will get into that later). They also use some classic programming like 5 x 5 of increasing load to build strength.
Now is this wrong? Isn’t easier to measure strength in this way?
First you have to understand what makes up strength and that is the foundational principles of Progressive Overload. This simple principle often gets misunderstood as JUST increasing weight. However, the reality is it means adding a stress to the body greater than before because exercise overall is a stress to the body.
Understanding this opens the door to realizing we can make an exercise more challenging by the following methods….
-Range of Motion
-Plane of Motion
-Stability of Implement
NINE ways you can make an exercise more difficult! The above example focuses really on two. So? Why I keep saying DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training can make you so surprisingly strong is that we focus on all nine.
If we took out the equipment used and just focused on the nine principles of strength and said you could follow one thought process that used less than 30% of the variables that make you strong or one that used 100%, which would you choose?
That is why when our conversation turned to building strength and the famous 5/3/1 program (for those that don’t know, it is a strength program focusing on changing load starting lighter then moving to heavier in a major lift like squat, bench, or deadlift). How do you use DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training for a program like this? Doesn’t it work?
Yes, if you really understand the program and then you will see we have several ways of manipulating the program. The 5/3/1 program doesn’t lead to 100% effort for your one rep, rather, the creator of the program (Jim Wendler) suggests ramping up such as a week starting at 65% then ramping up all the way to possibly 95%. Why is this important?
Five repetitions normally corresponds to about 80-85% of one’s maximal effort. So, you aren’t starting even CLOSE to your maximal effort of even five repetitions in this program. How does this impact using DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training?
Instead of changing actual weight we can choose altering some other variables. Let’s take the squat for example. We could do the following….
Bear Hug x 5
Front Load x 3
Shoulder x 1 (each side)
Changing holding position is just like changing how the load feels on the body, the benefit is we stimulate the body slightly differently to work on different components.
Another example for deadlifting….
Front Load Good Morning x 5
Lateral Step x 3
Rear Step x 1
In this situation we change holding position, plane of motion, and body position to alter load. Why does this work well? Because now we can identify weaknesses, movement compensations, and build more real world strength. By working in more variables of strength we actually build smarter strength!
Today’s DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training video blog gives you some additional ideas. Check them out and see how you can get strong and fit even using classic strength workouts.