Training Principles 2
With training programs, there is a fundamental misunderstanding when it comes term to progression. The key cornerstone of any effective program is a systematic progression towards a more challenging stimulus. Most programs fall short on this by only progressing two variables – the weight on the bar and the number of reps. These two progressions are excellent but can reach a plateau fairly quickly. Here are some methods that we have used effectively with our clients and the results you can hope to achieve.
1. Increase the complexity of the exercise
This method is perfect for optimal neuromuscular development and movement skill. An example of this is progressing from a barbell press to a wall handstand hold to a handstand push up. This is a complexity progression. It is the hardest method of progression but by far the most rewarding.
2. Increase the repetitions performed
This method is ideal for increasing muscular hypertrophy. Your goal is to do more repetitions than last time. You may progress from 5 reps to 6 reps and so on.
3. Increase the sets performed
This is another method more suited for increasing muscle size. It works by increasing the volume of work performed.
4. Decrease the rest period
This method is used in conditioning and weight loss programs. An example of this is reducing your rest period by 5 seconds each week. This would also help with hormonal status after a workout, increasing the release of growth hormone.
5. Speed progression
This method involves performing your required repetitions faster. This has the effect of increasing the tension developed within the muscle and can be useful for strength gains.
6. Increase the load
This is the easiest way to quantify progression in a program. It is useful for both strength and hypertrophy gains. By focusing on performance goals we will not only achieve our physique goals faster, we will also achieve psychological success with the training process. If in each workout you achieve a goal by progressing in your training you have earned a victory. This is great for improving exercise adherence and enjoyment.
The goal of a training session is not how it makes you feel, it is what you achieve. A training session in which you spew does not necessarily make a good training session! It is far more productive if you went into the gym with the goal of setting a new 3RM on your front squat. Not only is it a quantiable goal, it will also give you a killer workout!
Our nal point is that by improving your performance you will change your physique. It is the people who do the same exercise program day in and day out that never make any changes in their body. Why focus on just looking better if you can look better, get stronger, get faster, develop your movement capacity and improve how you feel all at the same time,