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The Hole In Your Strength Training

core training

It is interesting how fast we are to judge things when we put measurements to them. I think it is pretty natural when someone sets a standard we want to know where we measure. That of course leads us to love, hate, question, follow without question the standards depending upon how they make us feel. In many cases standards are one’s theory and if they are GOOD measures the end point is far less relevant to your strength training than the journey.

What do I mean?

When we released our DVRT “Big 6”, we had a lot of discussion. There were emails from our awesome DVRT community, we had tons of internal dialogue with our Master Instructors as well. In both cases we had people that loved the idea of these strength training standards and in others, we had people that really concerned if they were good for our DVRT community.

sandbag training

Unfortunately, I think in both cases many people missed the REAL point about what these standards were to represent. This isn’t a contest to see who can accomplish our DVRT standards fastest and therefore making them more “hardcore” than someone else. The take home point of these strength training standards was actually meant to be something very different.

Each of the Big 6 represents quality of functional fitness that we believe are essential to any fitness goal. We wanted to broaden how people saw strength training far beyond just “lifting heavy stuff and putting it down.”

While that is a catchy saying, it doesn’t really give much value to what we are trying to achieve through fitness. As legendary speed coach, Lee Taft, has said the whole point of strength training is to build greater efficiency.

We HOPE that when we get stronger at a strength training exercise, it means that we are getting better in ways that will impact our life. Whether that is how we look, feel, live, or perform. Yet, so many times, we are really just guessing that such movements will accomplish such goals.

That is why with the Big 6 we selected exercises that looked at a broad spectrum of qualities.



-Reactive Strength

-Decelerative Strength

-Whole Body Linkage

-Multi-planar Strength

-Movement In The 7 Human Movement Patterns

You can see, we didn’t just pick popular exercises that everyone sees in the gym. We wanted strength training exercises that were more representative of what functional training was all about!

So, when someone tries our standards and they don’t do as well as they thought, are they “weak?”, is their training “stupid?” These are obvious reflex reactions that some may have that struggle in achieving some of our strength training standards that leads them to saying they aren’t good measures.

DVRT Master, Cory Cripe, shows how we use a wide spectrum of progressions to build better movement. The key to success isn’t necessarily pounding the same exercise. 

Sadly, they are missing the point. The role of the Big 6 is actually to give you feedback upon what you probably need to focus more in your training. If your lateral drag is horrible and you want to deadlift more, you would probably find increasing both your core strength, but the connections of the chains that such an exercise offers would have carry over to your deadlift even though it doesn’t look like a deadlift.

Maybe you want to lose body fat and you find your MAX lunge is a severe struggle. I don’t care that you can or can’t do a MAX lunge, what it tells me though is that focusing on your stability and mobility in such a movement pattern will allow you to train at a higher intensity, reduce injury potential, and both will allow you to train harder and more consistently. Guess what happens to fat loss at that point? Yup, you can achieve more!!

The hope is when you use the Big 6 you don’t get caught up being a master of the drills, but you take the information the drills that these exercises provide you and then use our DVRT system to problem solve. THAT is the point of creating standards like this, to make you better, to help you use your strength training to create better results, NOT to be a DVRT expert!

Want to delve deeper in the DVRT system? Check out our NEW L.I.F.T. programs, Restoration Certification, and MORE HERE

DVRT Master, Larisa Lotz, shows how progressing familiar exercises helps us build more qualities of functional fitness.