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View Full Version : Is it safe to do Westside when you don't have a solid base?



patricky
06-21-2012, 09:56 PM
I just read that article written by Chris Mason. And it said that to pull big you should be doing a Westside training.

Half a year ago I got my bench up to 145kg and decided to do Westside because it's a more fun way to train and it's effective.

Well I had a slightly niggily right shoulder. But it wasn't too bad. Anyway I followed Westside as written and after about a month I could no longer train my shoulder.

It's been almost 6 months and my shoulder is still fucked. MY doctor has ordered me to get an xray and ultrasound. He wrote on the sheet, rotator cuff syndrome, what ever that means. I think I'll have to have surgery.

But anyway back to the point. On hardgainer forums the members said that I was an idiot for doing something like Westside without the proper base.

I started off pretty strong before training with a 200kg deadlift and 80kg bench.

Opinions?

kingns
06-21-2012, 11:02 PM
I think a beginner should do something with more work with the main lifts and get those down before they do something like westside where you rotate exercises a lot more often. But its not unsafe or something. One good thing IMO about westside is that you really train everything. THat way you develop a really good base.

Murderous
06-21-2012, 11:13 PM
I think a beginner should do something with more work with the main lifts and get those down before they do something like westside where you rotate exercises a lot more often. But its not unsafe or something. One good thing IMO about westside is that you really train everything. THat way you develop a really good base.Would want to add a reason beginners progress a lot on west side is because of the amount of volume that your body hasn't adapted to yet.

Off Road
06-21-2012, 11:42 PM
Would want to add a reason beginners progress a lot on west side is because of the amount of volume that your body hasn't adapted to yet.

Huh? If anything, beginners will gain on anything, the volume has nothing to do with it. In fact I'd say beginners need far less volume than advanced lifters.

Murderous
06-22-2012, 12:09 AM
Huh? If anything, beginners will gain on anything, the volume has nothing to do with it. In fact I'd say beginners need far less volume than advanced lifters.Just speaking from personal experience, progressing on SS or SL was way slower than high-volume.

BloodandThunder
06-22-2012, 08:49 AM
I never did linear periodization, SS or 5x5 to begin, but I did have a coach who had trained at Westside and knew Louie personally. Westside/conjugate method can be adapted to any skill set, raw/single/multi, etc.... it just requires more observation and thought than just running a simple SS or 5x5 program for a while. IMO, WS is great for high school lifters who have to compete very frequently while also training for other sports.

For example, we practiced the main lifts alot more and utilized less accommodating resistance than what you'd typically see in a WS program. That was a recommendation straight from Louie at the time. DE Work and ME work were still the mainstay but we didn't rotate that frequently since our adaption levels were alot lower than an experienced lifter. RE work was done for hypertrophy and sled pulling/GPP work was important for all the lifters who also did other sports. GHRs and Reverse Hypers were typically done before even getting into barbell work.

WS is a great program. I'd recommend any "beginner" or inexperienced lifter to read all the old Deepsquatter articles and the Eight Keys before messing around with 40 extra workouts, chains, bands, 20 different bars and other things. WS made great progress with a very simple system back then and anyone can when they K.I.S.S.

ScottYard
06-22-2012, 08:53 AM
Only one way to find out. Give it a shot.

RhodeHouse
06-22-2012, 09:18 AM
I wouldn't train Westside. If you're asking, then you probably have no idea what you're doing. Follow a basic plan that will build your body. I always recommend 5/3/1. When you stop asking what you should do and just do it, then you'll have an idea.

Travis Bell
06-22-2012, 10:12 AM
Sounds like you ignored a problem that cropped up early and just kept training through it.

That would have happened regardless of what program you were on.

But yes you can use Westside on a beginner. It just needs to be done correctly. I've used Westside on countless high school athletes. You just pick and choose the ME and DE stuff based on where they are at developmentally.

Justin Randal
06-22-2012, 11:03 AM
Sounds like you ignored a problem that cropped up early and just kept training through it.

That would have happened regardless of what program you were on.

But yes you can use Westside on a beginner. It just needs to be done correctly. I've used Westside on countless high school athletes. You just pick and choose the ME and DE stuff based on where they are at developmentally.

Couldn't agree more! Training through aches and pains is normal but training through an injury with out propper rehab can be a bad idea. Westside is easily adaptable to the beginner. It is an amazing program and I highly recommend it!

xolix
06-22-2012, 03:59 PM
For example, we practiced the main lifts alot more and utilized less accommodating resistance than what you'd typically see in a WS program. That was a recommendation straight from Louie at the time. DE Work and ME work were still the mainstay but we didn't rotate that frequently since our adaption levels were alot lower than an experienced lifter. RE work was done for hypertrophy and sled pulling/GPP work was important for all the lifters who also did other sports. GHRs and Reverse Hypers were typically done before even getting into barbell work.



can you explain a bit more please ? max effort set up for raw bench without too much rotating ?

kingns
06-22-2012, 07:50 PM
A really advanced person should switch their main exercises on max effort day every week. If I go in an do an all out 1 rm on an exercise, chances are I wont beat it the next week. So I'd rotate through several exercises before going back to it. A beginner could max on incline bench 2-3+ weeks in a row and still hit new max's, then rotate to another exercise for 2-3 weeks. A beginner could also get away with less exercises to rotate through. Ive heard Flat bench, incline, floor press, 2 board are the only bench exercises a beginner needs.

BloodandThunder
06-23-2012, 05:20 AM
can you explain a bit more please ? max effort set up for raw bench without too much rotating ?

Was a long time ago, but we were HS powerlifters who did other sports, competed several times a year, and wore Inzer Blast shirts (i.e. little carryover). Pretty much the Eight Keys article nails it down. Off the top of my head though:

ME Work: far out from meet, rotated every 2 or 3 weeks and kept exercises basic. Rack Lockouts, Pin Press from forehead, floor press, chain press, or football bar press (exercises depended on leverages and sticking points). Higher boards used for volume after. Exertion was monitored very carefully, sometimes 3-5RM used. Progress was measured by PRs and we never missed weights. Some light accessory work after.
Closer to meet, prilepin's table used for paused competition style bench. shirt thrown on a few weeks before for singles then taper down to deload

DE Work: speed bench (either straight weight, light chain, weight releaser, or chain) then accessories. I believe we did speed bench every week, but deloaded every 4th week from ME and used high rep DB presses for time to refresh. Weight was kept the same and it was 60%-70% if I recall. This is where you worked on technique. DE workout was like 45 minutes tops. Volume was higher on DE, ME day was more about intensity.

RE Work: lots of accessories for lagging parts, mostly back and triceps.

April Mathis
06-23-2012, 08:18 PM
I just read that article written by Chris Mason. And it said that to pull big you should be doing a Westside training.

Half a year ago I got my bench up to 145kg and decided to do Westside because it's a more fun way to train and it's effective.

Well I had a slightly niggily right shoulder. But it wasn't too bad. Anyway I followed Westside as written and after about a month I could no longer train my shoulder.

It's been almost 6 months and my shoulder is still fucked. MY doctor has ordered me to get an xray and ultrasound. He wrote on the sheet, rotator cuff syndrome, what ever that means. I think I'll have to have surgery.

But anyway back to the point. On hardgainer forums the members said that I was an idiot for doing something like Westside without the proper base.
I started off pretty strong before training with a 200kg deadlift and 80kg bench.
Opinions?

There is not one way to train that is best for everyone. If there was everyone would be following the exact same thing. But all of the best lifters train in completely different ways. I would imagine it is a better idea to do more reps and volume at first and learn good technique than so much max effort. However you can't blame a training routine for getting injured. It's not the program, it is up to you to be smarter and not keep training through something that is continually getting worse. A lot of people do it at some point especially early on and without more experienced people to lift with. It will heal over time and/or with surgery. I had a rotator injury once that took 14 months to heal enough to flat bench, but I now bench about 150lbs. more than when I injured it.

RhodeHouse
06-23-2012, 09:15 PM
I just read that article written by Chris Mason. And it said that to pull big you should be doing a Westside training.

Half a year ago I got my bench up to 145kg and decided to do Westside because it's a more fun way to train and it's effective.

Well I had a slightly niggily right shoulder. But it wasn't too bad. Anyway I followed Westside as written and after about a month I could no longer train my shoulder.

It's been almost 6 months and my shoulder is still fucked. MY doctor has ordered me to get an xray and ultrasound. He wrote on the sheet, rotator cuff syndrome, what ever that means. I think I'll have to have surgery.

But anyway back to the point. On hardgainer forums the members said that I was an idiot for doing something like Westside without the proper base.

I started off pretty strong before training with a 200kg deadlift and 80kg bench.

Opinions?

Westside has a few good pullers, but not the best in the world, by any stretch. They are known for squats and benches. The pull has been an afterthought until recently. In true Westside fashion, I'm sure they'll figure out how to train it and start putting up numbers like they do in squats and benches. I'd look at some of the best pullers and note the similarities in their training.

Check out Micha Koklyev, Benedict Magnussen, Andy Bolton, Konstantinov, Ed Coan and I know there are others. Everything I'm coming across is that the best tend to do a hell of a lot more volume.