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Travis Bell
04-06-2009, 10:32 AM
This was posted by DGabe in the Louie Simmons thread but since it wasn't a question for Lou, I moved it here so you guys can discuss it.


Where is the line drawn between Raw and Equipped training? By this I mean, what exercises would be more geared(no pun) toward someone lifting equipped, and which are more beneficial for the raw lifter.

I know guys with shirts have much less trouble getting out of the hole and focus on lockout strength..etc.

Another example would be box squats which are really tough on the hips and many raw lifters can easily overtrain because of not having briefs.

As a raw bencher (for now) I focus on floor presses, pin presses, to help my strength off my chest. What other exercises are recommended for raw lifters?

So basically, are there any major variations that are made for raw lifters vs equipped?

Brian C
04-06-2009, 11:00 AM
This is a great question. I was thinking of a question similar. If you like to train RAW and equipped(non meet training) what type of lifts are recommended or used that will increase proficiency in both. I guess im trying to get at what will help increase your raw lift off the chest, but also be beneficial for equipped training? Or should you train totally seperate for both, like rotate weeks....(I think I asked that right)

MarcusWild
04-06-2009, 11:09 AM
This is what I do for people that train with us raw. We scale back the accommodation. I'm not sure it makes sense for a raw lifter to use a reverse blue band. They use reverse purple instead. When they bench against bands, they use less tension. When they use chains, they use less of them. They don't use boards as often and never really go above a 2-bd. Their tricep training is about the same. They need more lat volume on accessories, since lats are critical to their starting strength.

scott rowe
04-06-2009, 11:17 AM
when i am out of my shirt or after i like feet up in the air rest pauses off the chest. takes a few times for balance but blasts the chest.

Travis Bell
04-06-2009, 11:25 AM
DB bench is good for power off the chest ,so is cambered bar bench.

I train raw most of the time. I get in my shirt about once a month or so, unless I'm breaking in a new shirt, in which case I do my raw work first and then just take some light singles off boards to break in the shirt

I use combinations of heavy band tension and chain weight. I'll change my grips around which I really find makes a huge difference.

One thing I learned from my last training cycle was when I didn't use lots of tension weight (never went higher than doubled monster minis) I lost my ability to grind lifts out. This also was partly induced by not using closer grips enough. So what I've been doing is working up to a grinder single with a closer grip and then hitting the same weight with comp grip for a second set.

For instance, this week I'm going to use 3 sets of chain (150lbs) and doubled monster mini bands (+110) full range with pinkie on the ring grip and then hit the same weight with comp grip.

DGabe24
04-06-2009, 02:09 PM
Wow, for a while I thought I must have had a dream about typing that question up. I'm not big on starting new threads, but I guess this was worth it..thanks Travis.


From what I gathered, as a raw lifter..floor presses, and 1-2 boards will help a lot with lower sticking points. My lockout isn't as much of an issue as just getting the weight high enough to engage more triceps.

Hopefully with some light bands, boards, and floor presses...my raw bench will really shoot up. I'd like to take raw lifting as far possible before thinking about equipped.


I'll switch up grips too like you said, sounds good.

Lones Green
04-06-2009, 02:29 PM
Yeah, raw benchers would see great carry over with DB presses and cambered bar bench for strength off the chest. I train my bench almost identically to Travis, because it works. Lot of raw stuff, not a lot of shirted stuff. Benching raw is funner, I think.

As for raw squatting I think if I trained raw, the first thing I'd do is move my stance in some. That will alleviate some of the hip pain. If you are totally against moving the stance in some, get some loose Frantz briefs to wear in training. They'll protect your hips and shouldn't give you much at all. I think I'd still squat off a box though

Deadlift for me is trained the same either way. 90% of the reason I wear a deadlift suit is to protect my hips, I haven't found anything thats given me more than 20 or 30 lbs or so. If I pulled raw all the time I'd pull conventional, though

DGabe24
04-06-2009, 03:00 PM
How would you guys recommend working the DB presses in?

ME days, after the ME lift maybe? 3-4 sets?

BrockO'Bummer
04-06-2009, 03:28 PM
A raw bencher MUST do lots of full ROM ME exercises that has lots of emphasis on pecs and delts.

slashkills
04-06-2009, 03:37 PM
How would you guys recommend working the DB presses in?

ME days, after the ME lift maybe? 3-4 sets?

3-4 sets of 15-20 reps

gatorman2k6
04-06-2009, 04:20 PM
Travis has told me to use 3-4 sets of 6-8 reps to make sure you are using heavy DBs.

Travis Bell
04-06-2009, 04:56 PM
3-4 sets of 15-20 reps

^this on DE day


Travis has told me to use 3-4 sets of 6-8 reps to make sure you are using heavy DBs.

^this on ME day

slashkills
04-06-2009, 05:03 PM
Wow, really misread the question. I dont think i could even do that much after ME day.

jbrin0tk
04-06-2009, 05:10 PM
I, too, have noticed a large increase in strength from DB bench presses. Sometimes I work up to a max set of 10, sometimes I go for 4 x 12 with a pretty heavy (for me) weight. I also occasionally add in DB incline presses or DB floor presses. My strength off of the chest has really taken off since I've stuck with them for awhile.


I also liked cambered bar bench, too. I only did it twice, both times for a 5 rep max, which I then repeated for volume purposes. I also used a 2 board when I did it so that I wasn't over rotating my shoulders, but still had to drop my arms and shoulders lower than a normal bench press.

Travis Bell
04-06-2009, 05:56 PM
I, too, have noticed a large increase in strength from DB bench presses. Sometimes I work up to a max set of 10, sometimes I go for 4 x 12 with a pretty heavy (for me) weight. I also occasionally add in DB incline presses or DB floor presses. My strength off of the chest has really taken off since I've stuck with them for awhile.


I also liked cambered bar bench, too. I only did it twice, both times for a 5 rep max, which I then repeated for volume purposes. I also used a 2 board when I did it so that I wasn't over rotating my shoulders, but still had to drop my arms and shoulders lower than a normal bench press.

Now here is a guy who gets it! You've learned to listen to your body and go by feel. Very good work Jesse. You have come a very long ways in your training knowledge and it shows in your strength.

Brian C
04-06-2009, 06:42 PM
Great insight guys. I have to really start incorporating more DB work. This sounds like where my answer lies. Ive been fairing well when shirted with good steady increases, but have stalled a bit in RAW training off the chest. Thank you

jbrin0tk
04-06-2009, 07:11 PM
Now here is a guy who gets it! You've learned to listen to your body and go by feel. Very good work Jesse. You have come a very long ways in your training knowledge and it shows in your strength.

Thank you, Travis. I appreciate the compliment. Like I said in another thread, much of what I have learned has come from you and others like you who were willing to be helpful and share information with me.

jmccown
04-07-2009, 08:32 AM
On my ME day I usually work up to a single, warm up with sets of 5 in 50lb jumps each set till I hit 75% and then drop to 3's. Once I get to the 90% range I go to singles. Afterwards I'll do 2 sets of DB presses as many as I can do. This week I done a set of 27 my first set with 100lb DB (biggest ones I have) and a second set for 22 reps with same weight. I know I need to do less reps but I do more reps because I don't have heavier DB's.

Do you guys think triceps and lats should be incorporated on both ME and DE days? Or would that be overtraining?

slashkills
04-07-2009, 08:35 AM
I do lats on both days. I try and go heavier on one day and lighter with more reps on the second day.

What kind of floor should you do floor presses on? right now im working out in my basement with a concrete floor. Within a few weeks we will have carpeting though.

Travis Bell
04-07-2009, 09:09 AM
Do you guys think triceps and lats should be incorporated on both ME and DE days? Or would that be overtraining?

I always do my ascessory work on DE and ME days





What kind of floor should you do floor presses on? right now im working out in my basement with a concrete floor. Within a few weeks we will have carpeting though.

Flooring isn't super important

DGabe24
04-07-2009, 09:15 AM
I always do my ascessory work on DE and ME days



Same, although I do lats on squat day. If I did it on ME/DE bench days my upper back tends knot up when I stay tight with squats or keep an arch with GM's.

Rob Luyando
04-07-2009, 10:10 AM
I am by no means a raw expert but I have some exsperience on the bench. You can basically train the same way raw as you would equiped to gain strength and speed. Utilize bands, chains, and boards. Bands and chains to work your speed and overload your lock out and boards to target your weak points. This isn't rocket science guys want big bench raw or equiped move big weight. Shock your CNS and get it used to the beatings. Make sure your good and warmed up before you start your heavy sets raw.

Stay tuned for a new kind of record for the old man.....................

bencher8
04-07-2009, 11:15 AM
what? You gonnna set a record for how many family size tuscani pastas you can eat? Just leave the order taker alone....she doesnt know you! lol

Rob Luyando
04-07-2009, 02:57 PM
what? You gonnna set a record for how many family size tuscani pastas you can eat? Just leave the order taker alone....she doesnt know you! lol


Nope Pizza hut ranks right up ther with Inzer in my book. Not only is Stealth Inc. th next big thing but Angelo's Pizza in my area rocks. Home of the 15 lbs spaggetti pizza.

Jason198
04-07-2009, 06:56 PM
15 lb spaghetti wow! What kind of record are you going for maybe a raw record or full meet equipped? What ever the record good luck.

On the topic lift heavy & hammer lats, if you use boards do not cheat and bounce the weight if you do, it will not help you over come your sticking points as well.

Andrew Cohn
04-09-2009, 08:35 AM
I'm no pro by any means, but I have been training as a powerlifter for almost 3 years now and have added 60 pounds to my bench in the last year (naturally). That is more than the first two years combined in which I added a totaly of 26 pounds. I use the Gillingham 12 periodization scheme so I bench heavy every week. It's broken down well though so you take 1-2 heavy singles each week and then a handful of triples in the 80%-90% range. This really helps avoid overtraining.

I feel that the assistance schedule I have devised has really helped me though. So a two week schedule will look like this

Week 1
Heavy Bench Monday:
1. Bench Press according to Gillingham periodization
2. Military press up to heavy singles
3. Weighted pull ups
4. Abs

Speed Bench Thursday:
1. Bench with bands (not required, works on decent speed though)
2. Close grip bench up to heavy singles or triples
3. Dumbell bench with pause. Pick a maximal weight and max out on reps
4. Tricep extension. Heavy weight and high reps
5. Abs (optional as this is a ligther day)

Week 2
Heavy Bench Monday:
1. Bench Press according to Gillingham periodization
2. Pause bench. About 65%-75% for triples with a 3 second pause on chest
3. Floor press with swiss bar (or any bar you can get your hands on)
4. Heavy T-bar row or another heavy lat exercise
5. Abs

Speed Bench Thursday:
1. Bench with bands
2. Two board press for heavy doubles and triples (no need for singles as we don't want to over tax the CNS on this easier day)
3. Three board press (smoke those triceps!)
4. Tricep Extensions. Heavy weight and heavy reps
5. Incline DB press

This stresses all areas of the bench motion for the raw lifter. My sticking point was about 3 inches off my chest so I really worked the DB bench and the boards and I'm strong all the way through now. Hope this helps someone out!

Travis, any advice or thoughts here from a pro? How does this look to you?

Travis Bell
04-09-2009, 09:04 AM
Thanks for the question!

Personally, yes I think that looks like a decent program, but something like Westside is much much more productive. When I spent about 8mths focusing on my raw bench using only Westside methods, my raw bench went from 455 to 515. Right now my raw bench is around 540 on a given day.

When I came to Westside my raw bench wasn't much higher than yours

The reason I'm not a fan of heavy triples and doubles whether they are on boards or not, on DE day is because you can still over tax your CNS doing that. It's still heavy weight in your hands. I don't do anything heavy on DE day.

The advantage of working up to a single every week on ME day is you have the advantage of being able to train your weak points very effectively. Plus this really takes out the need for cycling up for a meet. You always know where you're at. I don't change anything leading up to a meet. I just take a week of, and head to the meet. That's it

1400total
04-12-2009, 11:43 AM
I have never tried a westside approach, but have borrowed from some of its concept. I am still a newbie in powerlifting but have spent many years (dare i say it) bodybuilding. The base i developed was a good one. In a year and a half i have put 60 lbs on my bench going from 405 to 465. (i am a superheavy so thats nothing special).

anyway, I like training with a ful ROM, but i also like using heavy band tensions and chains. I believe that helps with my explosiveness out of the bottom. But my weakest link tends to the first 2-4 inches off my chest.

I also agree cambered bar benches, and dumbells will help. BUt I do not agree with that a raw lifter needs to use less bands and chains. I feel you should use what you can handle.

Lones Green
04-12-2009, 12:26 PM
I have never tried a westside approach, but have borrowed from some of its concept. I am still a newbie in powerlifting but have spent many years (dare i say it) bodybuilding. The base i developed was a good one. In a year and a half i have put 60 lbs on my bench going from 405 to 465. (i am a superheavy so thats nothing special).

anyway, I like training with a ful ROM, but i also like using heavy band tensions and chains. I believe that helps with my explosiveness out of the bottom. But my weakest link tends to the first 2-4 inches off my chest.

I also agree cambered bar benches, and dumbells will help. BUt I do not agree with that a raw lifter needs to use less bands and chains. I feel you should use what you can handle.

You say you feel using heavy bands and chains helps with your explosiveness out of the bottom, then you say your weakest link is the first few inches off your chest.

How does that work?

Beast Genetics
04-12-2009, 02:03 PM
You say you feel using heavy bands and chains helps with your explosiveness out of the bottom, then you say your weakest link is the first few inches off your chest.

How does that work?

Yeah that got me too???:confused: Side note, Excellent thread!!!

Travis Bell
04-12-2009, 02:55 PM
You say you feel using heavy bands and chains helps with your explosiveness out of the bottom, then you say your weakest link is the first few inches off your chest.

How does that work?

Bingo

This is the problem created by too much tension and not enough bar weight

Beefcaker
04-12-2009, 11:58 PM
I just recently started using the WSBB template (bench only for now), and I decided to incorporate the dumbbells as well. I have noticed a lot of strength results from heavy dumbbells. I wasn't sure how to do so though. Do you add it in, or replace the tricep exercise? Or do you rotate? I was thinking of rotating them from workout to workout, but that wouldn't work because then it would be all DE or all ME days.

Lones Green
04-13-2009, 03:15 AM
I just recently started using the WSBB template (bench only for now), and I decided to incorporate the dumbbells as well. I have noticed a lot of strength results from heavy dumbbells. I wasn't sure how to do so though. Do you add it in, or replace the tricep exercise? Or do you rotate? I was thinking of rotating them from workout to workout, but that wouldn't work because then it would be all DE or all ME days.

I like to throw em in after my max effort movement

There was a thread with a lot of info about DB presses in it not long ago at all, try a search

kingkong51
04-13-2009, 08:25 AM
Well coming from a raw bench Static Presses, Floor Presses, Full Range Bench with Chains and Bands, Heavy Inclines and 2 brds work well for me but I can say board presses are useless in some instances for a raw bench because we rely on our chest power to push the weight. So I will say ME on as much full range and floor presses as possible.

Beast Genetics
04-14-2009, 08:59 AM
Bingo

This is the problem created by too much tension and not enough bar weight

If you don't mind taking a sec. Travis, How does this work? or not work?

Travis Bell
04-14-2009, 09:03 AM
Not enough weight at the bottom. If you have the majority of your weight comming in at the top (bands) then you aren't really working the bottom of your bench

Beast Genetics
04-14-2009, 09:06 AM
Not enough weight at the bottom. If you have the majority of your weight comming in at the top (bands) then you aren't really working the bottom of your bench

Makes sense, Thanks

Beefcaker
04-14-2009, 07:21 PM
I like to throw em in after my max effort movement

There was a thread with a lot of info about DB presses in it not long ago at all, try a search

I must really suck at the search feature ...

Lones Green
04-15-2009, 03:27 AM
I must really suck at the search feature ...

I typed in "dumbbell press" and got around 2300 threads.

Beefcaker
04-15-2009, 08:19 PM
I typed in "dumbbell press" and got around 2300 threads.

Yeah, but considering my dyslexia, it's kind of hard to sift through that much. Reading is just a bit slower and more frustrating for me. If you narrow it down to just the Olympic/PL forum, you get 3 pages and a total of 75 threads. I have looked through those a lot and haven't been able to find one about dumbbell presses. Put dumbbell presses in just thread only, and you won't find much either. I didn't mean to come off as a smartass; I just actually do suck at the search feature. I've been using forums for years, as I have been an avid rock crawling enthusiast for quite some time. I have always had trouble finding things.

I'll keep looking though. If I find it, I'll post it. Back to ME exercise discussions

Travis Bell
04-15-2009, 08:21 PM
DE day - use the DB bench for high reps - 15 + for two sets

ME day - 2-4 sets of 6-8 reps

teeroy
04-15-2009, 08:22 PM
Yeah, but considering my dyslexia, it's kind of hard to sift through that much. Reading is just a bit slower and more frustrating for me. If you narrow it down to just the Olympic/PL forum, you get 3 pages and a total of 75 threads. I have looked through those a lot and haven't been able to find one about dumbbell presses. Put dumbbell presses in just thread only, and you won't find much either. I didn't mean to come off as a smartass; I just actually do suck at the search feature. I've been using forums for years, as I have been an avid rock crawling enthusiast for quite some time. I have always had trouble finding things.

I'll keep looking though. If I find it, I'll post it. Back to ME exercise discussions

Use google for searching instead of the built in search in the forum. In google type:

site:wannabebig.com dumbbell press

I find the google search easier because it will take you to the actual page of the thread where the keywords were found instead of just returning the whole thread and making you sift through all the pages.

T o m m Y
04-15-2009, 08:30 PM
DE day - use the DB bench for high reps - 15 + for two sets

ME day - 2-4 sets of 6-8 reps

whats the best grip to take when doing these?

Travis Bell
04-15-2009, 08:34 PM
to my knowledge there is only one grip on DB bench

Reko
04-15-2009, 08:40 PM
to my knowledge there is only one grip on DB bench

You mean Lou hasn't made multi-grip dumbells of bamboo with little band/chain hooks on it yet?
Sheesh... the age is getting to him
:hello:

T o m m Y
04-15-2009, 08:40 PM
to my knowledge there is only one grip on DB bench

ive always done palms forward,but read palms facing each other is good to?

Travis Bell
04-15-2009, 10:02 PM
ive always done palms forward,but read palms facing each other is good to?

Oh I gottcha! LOL my mistake

I typically use kind of a mixed grip, palms kinda diagonal or I'll do two sets palms out, two sets palms in

T o m m Y
04-15-2009, 10:07 PM
Oh I gottcha! LOL my mistake

I typically use kind of a mixed grip, palms kinda diagonal or I'll do two sets palms out, two sets palms in

lol,all good bro..
i was just wondering which grip would be best..

vdizenzo
04-15-2009, 10:27 PM
Dumbells freak me out. I have to go too heavy with them and they got so unwieldy.

Travis Bell
04-15-2009, 10:37 PM
I've gone up to the 200's before and found it greatly helps to lay down and have someone hand the DB's to you, although I'm sure you're going much heavier than that

bencher8
04-16-2009, 08:42 AM
Reko, that was pretty good! If Lou comes out with those you are gonna have to get some royalties now lol

Dam Vin.....so heavy you cant lay down with them? I must be weaker than i thought! This brings to mind a story a guy told me in the gym just on wed. He said he went to the arnold and saw a pair of DB's that weighed 480 pounds! Said he didnt want to do it, but HIS FRIEND's FRIEND(who weighs 200 pounds, but is shredded) did them for 3 reps! lol I just figured that they must be the fake weight things(like that bench thing they have there with the photo shoot weights) I just shook my head and did my piddly little 125's and walked away....

Can you do 240 pound DB's with each arm? Now THAT my friend is a strength feat....and at 200 shredded pounds no less! lol

I thought people made these kind of stories up to talk about on the forums lol Never thought i would actually run across one of these tools...