The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
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    4-Board for triceps for raw bench?

    I am training raw bench at the moment and of course I am weak at the bottom like most newbie benchers, so the lockout isn't really a huge problem. However, I am wondering whether 4-boards are still good as a major triceps accessory movement to be done for heavy sets of 6 or something like that.
    Last edited by OGROK; 08-04-2009 at 02:43 PM.

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  3. #2
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    Not sure what to tell you but I incorporate 4 board and 2 board presses and it helped get rid of a sticking point a part of the way up. My lockout is really powerful now too so if I can get it going it powers up. I have the intention of one day lifting with and competing in a bench shirt eventually.

  4. #3
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    sure, 4 brds is a great strength builder for triceps. When training for strength, just remember to train the movement, not the muscle. In other words, choose exercises that engage the muscle in a pattern that mimics the movement. 4 brds does, Stuff like tri pushdowns, does not...

    ...not to say the other exercise arent useful, but tri pushdowns will not make your lockout stronger. Just dont make the 4 brd your main movement for the day..
    Last edited by bencher8; 08-04-2009 at 03:04 PM.
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  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bencher8 View Post
    sure, 4 brds is a great strength builder for triceps. When training for strength, just remember to train the movement, not the muscle. In other words, choose exercises that engage the muscle in a pattern that mimics the movement. 4 brds does, Stuff like tri pushdowns, does not...

    ...not to say the other exercise arent useful, but tri pushdowns will not make your lockout stronger. Just dont make the 4 brd your main movement for the day..
    Haha, you're going against Louie's theory to use a lighter weight to lifter a heavier weight. 4-Bd works good, but you have to watch what it does to the total volume of your bench training. Doing boards with hundreds of pounds causes a lot more joint and CNS strain than doing rolling DB extensions, pushdowns, JM presses, or Tate presses.

    Dave Tate talks about the volume issue in an online clip. If you're just adding it, then start with something light like the tricep pushdowns. The key is to do them at an angle that mimics your bench. Then every 3-4 weeks switch to a new tricep exercise that lets you use a heavier weight. I'd say in order they would go tricep pushdown, Tate press, Rolling DB extension, JM press, then the board work. This will let your body get used to the heavier volume in a natural progression instead of just jumping to the most intense exercise.
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  6. #5
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    Im not going against Lou's theory. His theory of using a lighter weight to move a heavier weight consists of moving that lighter weight fast and applying as much force against that light weight as you would to move a heavy weight. Tri pushdowns will not build your lockout strength...I am not saying they wont work the muscle, I am not saying that you shouldnt do them, but they are not a strength exercise, they are a BB exercise.

    Yes, board work may put more stress on the joints and the CNS...thats why they work! Thats why they make you stronger.

    Throw out your high brd lockout work and keep the tri pushes, JM presses, and tate presses and see what happens to your lockout.....I have tried this. I took 4-5 brd presses out and my lockout went to crap inside of 2 months..

    How do you do tricep pushdowns at an angle that mimics your bench press?
    Last edited by bencher8; 08-04-2009 at 04:40 PM.
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  7. #6
    THE 800 QUEST NickAus's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=

    Yes, board work may put more stress on the joints and the CNS...thats why they work! Thats why they make you stronger.

    Throw out your high brd lockout work and keep the tri pushes, JM presses, and tate presses and see what happens to your lockout.....I have tried this. I took 4-5 brd presses out and my lockout went to crap inside of 2 months..

    How do you do tricep pushdowns at an angle that mimics your bench press?[/QUOTE]

    I have only been able to use high boards to work my lock-out/triceps due to a bad elbow.
    Extensions and pushdowns really hurt, Paul told me to leave them out and stick with the high boards and my bench has gone up around 40lbs.
    Of course when my arm is 100% again I will add some extensions in on speed day.

  8. #7
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    I'm not saying to not do them. I'm agreeing with you that they are good. I'm just saying to build up to them instead of jump straight into them. That way it's a manageable volume increase. Most of you guys that hit the board work really heavy for a lot of volume have been training for YEARS and have huge benches.

    The "Panora press" is a tricep extension where you press more away from your body instead of down. They mimic the arm angle of a bench pretty well if you arch when you bench. It's almost like a decline press angle.

    Personally, I used to do the heavy boards then 4 sets of one tricep movement. Now I do less sets on the boards and 4 sets of two tricep movements. That way I can feel some heavy weight, but not beat myself up so much that it affects my squat/deadlift training. By adding the extra tricep movement, my lockout strength is still improving. Now I'm going to start increasing the sets of each tricep movement. If I'd have gone right from 4 sets to 12-16 (my end goal), that would have been too dramatic of increase and too fast.
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  9. #8
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
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    I dunno, I think I might need to do more compound pressing b/c all these extensions are starting to wear on my elbows a bit.

  10. #9
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Marcus is right, Lou isn't a huge advocate (at least at this point in time) of high boards for lockout work. We don't really do them at all.

    Marcus, you're also right in Lou's theory of using lighter weight to move heavier weight. Greg, Luke, AJ and myself all do our lockout work by doing pushdown variations, JM's, skull crushers, Tates and other assorted close grip stuff. That's what he emphasizes and it's worked out well for all of us. AJ's and mine bench have been skyrocketing and Greg just benched 820 at the IPA pro meet.

    I'd be the last one to say that close grip high boards don't work well (that'd be rather silly to say - not that anyone here has said that) but I do prefer the isolated movements to the high boards. You're working the same muscles, just with less wear and tear on your body.

    Now for you OGROK, as a raw bencher they are a waste of time for you, especially if you're not weak at the top. Stick to heavy DB bench, cambered bar bench, cambered bar off boards, floor press etc, for your bench to keep going up. If you're weak at the bottom, work on the bottom, not the top.


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  11. #10
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
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    So are you saying that as long as I am training raw, shoulder/pec-dominant presses (stuff like DB bench) are better accessories than tricep-dominant presses? You were telling me you didn't do front delt work so I don't know if that's a shirt thing or not... For my tricep accessory work, should I still to full range of motion stuff like close grips, JM press, etc, rather than lockout tricep work? Thanks for the help dude.
    Last edited by OGROK; 08-04-2009 at 06:51 PM.

  12. #11
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Yeah I don't do any front delt work, but I train raw 90% of the time (to improve my shirted bench) but I feel that your front delts get plenty of work from the flat bench.

    The reason you should stick to lower end movements is because that's where you're weak. If you get to a point where you're weak at the top, then you'd tackle the top end stuff.


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  13. #12
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    I have had great success with my raw lockout by doing a lot more extension work. I continued to do boards but they were close grip for higher reps in the 10-20 range.


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  14. #13
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Vincent, what are your thoughts on front delt work? You have done a good bit of it in the past if I'm not mistaken. What are your thoughts now?


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  15. #14
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    Vincent, what are your thoughts on front delt work? You have done a good bit of it in the past if I'm not mistaken. What are your thoughts now?
    I have taken it out for this training cycle. My raw is stronger than ever, however, I don't think it would have been nearly as strong without my previous heavy shoulder pressing--I hit a pr 405 standing strict press in the fall. So my thoughts are heavy shoulder pressing in the off season then lighten or cut it during meet prep.


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  16. #15
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    I guess this must be some new thing...extensions make your lockout stronger? Never worked for me, just made my elbows hurt. Never worked for others I have helped either....I do them, but always on my DE day and lighter for more reps. Basically I use all types of extensions as accessory work to build muscle in the area, then make that new muscle stronger. Strength building has always been high brd work. Is it hard on shoulders? sure. Is it hard on your CNS? sure. Is strength building supposed to be accomplished by taking it easy on your body? not sure about that...

    I dont understand this statement...."You're working the same muscles, just with less wear and tear on your body." Isnt this the same thing as saying that someone could replace squatting with leg presses and extensions? Its working the same muscles, with less wear on your body. I dont think anyone would say thats a correct assumption right?



    I agree that the OP shouldnt focus on 4 brd work as his main exercise, but it will work as an accessorry tricep strength builder. The focus of his training should be on increasing his low end power with all the movements suggested.
    Last edited by bencher8; 08-04-2009 at 08:25 PM.
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  17. #16
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    What would be 4 good M.E. exercises for a raw lifter

    close grips + 40 lb of chain
    2 board max
    Floor Press
    Flat Bench doubles

    or would the 4 board be a good choice for a ME lift?

    I always liked the 4 board, be honest I do not know if it has helped much,although I have broke my records on this movement

  18. #17
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
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    For raw bench, should training shoulders/pecs take precedence over the triceps? IE should I be doing more of stuff like cambereds, illegal wides, etc, over general tricep work?
    Last edited by OGROK; 08-04-2009 at 09:45 PM.

  19. #18
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    Throw around some 315lb barbell extensions and you'll get stronger triceps, that I can assure you. I do my moderate to heavier tri work on DE day. That's when I do my extension work. I'll throw a couple of sets of high board close grips for reps after ME work. I shoot for 2-3 reps above 90% on my ME bench exercise. When I did heavy board work afterwards the only thing it ever helped was my ego. The higher reps have translated to improving my lockout. Just reporting what has worked for me and the others I train.


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  20. #19
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    If I am training for raw bench, should training shoulders/pecs take precedence over the triceps? IE should I be doing more of stuff like cambereds, illegal wides, etc, over general tricep work?
    I thought you were using the template from Rhodes' 600 lbs of raw bench article.


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  21. #20
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason198 View Post
    What would be 4 good M.E. exercises for a raw lifter

    close grips + 40 lb of chain
    2 board max
    Floor Press
    Flat Bench doubles

    or would the 4 board be a good choice for a ME lift?

    I always liked the 4 board, be honest I do not know if it has helped much,although I have broke my records on this movement
    Lose the 2 board and flat bench doubles and exchange them with regular flat bench and flat bench with bands. If you thow in a deload after the third week that means you'll only hit the same lift every 6 weeks.


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  22. #21
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vdizenzo View Post
    I thought you were using the template from Rhodes' 600 lbs of raw bench article.
    Well, I was concerned b/c that has stuff like 4boards, etc, and I am weak at the bottom.

  23. #22
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    extensions suck! lol

    seriously though...ext. never worked for me. I do my high brd stuff on the same day as my ME bench. I like to keep all my heavy stuff on the same day, keeping my de day light.

    different stuff works for different people though I guess.....
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  24. #23
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    Well, I was concerned b/c that has stuff like 4boards, etc, and I am weak at the bottom.
    Have you tried the program yet?

    Make sure to add an extra light tricep exercise to each bench day like a pushdown or dumbell extension for a few sets with higher reps. For the boards is an assistance exercise, bump the reps up to the 8-12 range for a few sets.

    Don't spend all your time looking for the right program instead of just sticking to one and working hard. Don't overthink things. SFW!
    Last edited by vdizenzo; 08-04-2009 at 10:23 PM.


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  25. #24
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    OK ****ers here is my 2 cents. I think my lockout is strong enough to smack down an opinoin on this topic. And I don't care what the guys that write books say! High boards (4 &5) is hands down the best exercise for lock out strength. Use a close grip one hand width in from compitition grip and hold the reps for a three count at the top. Keep you rep range from 3 to 5 reps. And do them with as heavy as weight as possible. Yes this will take a toll on your body but so will any strength exercise. The key is smart recovery planning Ice & proper recovery suppliments is a must.

    Extensions, Pushdowns, Key presses, and all other tri-cep exercises are also good for strength gains but you have to use maximum weight loads. Using light weight to get strong is b/s. Unless you are targetting your speed you need to train your tri-ceps heavy to get them strong as possible.

    Now before you guys get your panties in a bunch think about how much I bench and how much you bench. There is a reason I am a freak and thats constant heavy lock outs and heavy assitance work!

  26. #25
    JERSEY IRON Brian C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Luyando View Post
    OK ****ers here is my 2 cents. I think my lockout is strong enough to smack down an opinoin on this topic. And I don't care what the guys that write books say! High boards (4 &5) is hands down the best exercise for lock out strength. Use a close grip one hand width in from compitition grip and hold the reps for a three count at the top. Keep you rep range from 3 to 5 reps. And do them with as heavy as weight as possible. Yes this will take a toll on your body but so will any strength exercise. The key is smart recovery planning Ice & proper recovery suppliments is a must.

    Extensions, Pushdowns, Key presses, and all other tri-cep exercises are also good for strength gains but you have to use maximum weight loads. Using light weight to get strong is b/s. Unless you are targetting your speed you need to train your tri-ceps heavy to get them strong as possible.

    Now before you guys get your panties in a bunch think about how much I bench and how much you bench. There is a reason I am a freak and thats constant heavy lock outs and heavy assitance work!
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