View Full Version : Westside benchers who compete RAW

03-11-2008, 02:52 PM
Are there any westside benchers out there who compete RAW? I'd like some general training advice... My bench is AWFUL!

I'm trying to find some good ME excercises to implement into my training. I feel like regular westside training is triceps, triceps, triceps, which may not necessarily be beneficial for a raw lifter.

One question I've been wondering is whether or not lockouts/high end board presses will be beneficial if I'm training RAW. My lockout strength IS pretty crappy (Not much over my bottom position bench strength) though I usually fail about 2 inches off the chest.

Another question I have is on tightness during DE lifts. Do you want to set up for DE bench just like you would for a ME attempt? (shoulders pulled together, large arch, etc). Or should you just pop underneath the bar and go?

Finally, I've just recently started to get my back tightness together. I use to pull my shoulder blades together but they would "pop" loose at the top, which would kind of bring me off the bench. Now I'm getting better at keeping htem tight the whole way, though I was wondering if there was any other way to train upper back tightness during the bench? It feels very unnatural... the lift turns into an arm only movement, and I still kind of have a tendency to bring my chest towards the bench at the top of the lift.

Thanks for your responses!

03-11-2008, 05:43 PM
Well I use the boards, bands, and chains. I try to rotate them so I can get the full benefit. Full range bench with bands, chains or a combination of both will help you as a raw lifter. Now with boards try to over load as much as you can to get your CNS use too those heavy loads when you bench. Ill say with in 8 weeks your bench max will be alot higher. An make sure to do a bench accessory day with shoulders, lats and tris rotate heavy for a couple of weeks then light but on that day dont ME do some speed work with reverse bands, normal speed bench with bands, or floor press with chains for speed.

Travis Bell
03-11-2008, 06:15 PM
we do alot of raw work in the gym, but I'm not sure anyone competes raw although Wolf has hit 600 in a meet (NERB) and Nick Winters used to train at Westside. I've been training raw for probably the last two months because I haven't had a shirt that fit. In working on my raw bench, I actually got to the point where I realized I had neglected my board work so yes board work is important for the raw lifter. Using a cambered bar will help off the chest.

As for DE bench, you want to stay as tight as you do for ME work, it'll help you be more explosive.

Make no mistake though, triceps are priceless if you tuck your elbows, no matter if you train raw or shirted

03-12-2008, 05:50 AM
Here is an article Matt Rhodes wrote on Elitefts about my raw training cycle to 600. My training was based on some older Westside articles I dug up. It went so well that I am using the same template just with different ME exercises for my equipped return.


To answer one of your questions, I use the same setup for DE work as I do for ME work. I think it's important.

03-12-2008, 07:34 AM
Nice stuff Vincent. I'm going to try to incorporate some of those priniciples in my next training cycle since I'm shooting for a 350 raw bench after my next meet.

Big Hick
03-15-2008, 07:17 PM
alot of westside techniques cater to the geared user..(just saying)

Ben Moore
03-15-2008, 08:03 PM
alot of westside techniques cater to the geared user..(just saying)

Yes, but I think the op wanted to know how to adjust it to the raw lifter.