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04-15-2012, 11:35 AM
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Skimmed through the thread. Some good advice. Some regurgitation of standard internet dogma.* Some bad advice. I am just going to throw out some links for everyone and give my two cents.

A program that is relatively popular these days is Jim Wendler's "5/3/1". It is a simple template that will likely garner results without overloading the body. Even if you do not follow his strength routine, I highly recommend the e-book for its great point by point explanation of the lifts.** Wendler prescribes one lift a day following a 5/3/1 template and two accessory lifts. This program is great because it is easy to adjust the volume if you are sore/tired/playing hockey that day. Just cut out the accessory lifts. The e-book contains detailed options for the accessory work, as well as a discussion of when to do additional conditioning exercises.

Wendler's 5/3/1 is not a be all end all program. While many on the internet have taken it as the second coming of starting strength, others have been more critical. For instance, in describing his programming methodology for crossfit, Rudy Neilson, provides a dissenting opinion on 5/3/1 and explains why he does not program deadlifts.

Recently I programmed a Clean & Jerk cycle with a different goal in mind. We had a group of about 15 folks [...] who started a 12 week Wendler cycle, and I decided I wanted to see how big of a difference a specific PL cycle vs. a specific “Limited Conjugate” cycle made. To throw even more excitement into the test, I decided to try something I’d been wanting to do for a while, which was program ZERO Deadlifts, only Power Cleans and Cleans for pulling off the floor and heavy Back Squats for skeletal loading.

We tested 61 people at the end of the concurrent cycles. Of the 12 Wendlers that tested the average PR was just under 18# with – in my opinion – the numbers being skewed a bit by a couple 80+ pound PRs from two people who had rarely Deadlifted before the initial test (one of which who gained nearly 15# during the cycle). There were SIX of the 5/3/1 group who UN-PR’d, and a few others who tested the exact same. Of the “Limited Conjugate” group EVERY SINGLE PERSON PR’d by an average of 40# on the men’s side and 18# on the women’s side.
Instead his programing relies on a modified version of the "Hatch Squat" routine and Louie Simmons "Conjugate System". Neilsion prescribes high bar and low bar back squats while incorporating the olympic lifts as accessory work.*** I think this is a novel approach as deadlifting likely exhausts the body and central nervous system more than any other lift.

With some basic understanding of these two systems, I could see Neilson's programming methodology working quite well for sports other than crossfit. For hockey, a traditional hatch squat routine combined with single leg exercises - rear elevated split squat, single leg Romanian deadlift, reverse lunges - and variations of the clean - power cleans, hang power cleans, regular cleans, and clean pulls - as accessory work would provide a solid base for both power and injury prevention. Mike Boyle argues athletes should focus on single leg work and I tend to agree. However, I think that the benefits of traditional squat variations, especially for the early to intermediate athlete cannot be overlooked. Bilateral lifts address the greatest weakness of weekendwarriors: weakness itself. Many non-professional athletes are weak. The spinal loading of the squat, combined with proper diet and sleep, produces the greatest CNS response.

Finally, there is the tried and true Westside Barbell for Skinny ******** program by Joe DeFranco. DeFranco combines some of the ideas of Simmons with his own athletic programming and provides an off-season routine that will likely benefit most posters here. While there are signicant shortcomings of the program and DeFranco has been criticized for some of his views, WSB4SB is simple enough to follow and incorporates bilateral and unilateral movements with plyometric training. Building yourself a routine using DeFranco's philosophy (and making sure you incorporate single leg exercises) will be the easiest way to get sport-specific results, build strength, and prevent injury.

*Basically the abbreviated version of Rippetoe's Staring Strength that everyone seems to love.
** If you honestly cannot not afford it, be resourceful. However, the practicality of explanations of the basic powerlifting lifts trumps those found in Starting Strength 2nd Edition.
*** Breaking down the various squats

Last edited by BaconStrips: 04-15-2012 at 11:47 AM.
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