Hypertrophy Training for the Off-Season Strongman
In maximum sports activities, there’s a time and position for coaching specificity and a time to concentrate on muscle enlargement. The recreation of strongman isn’t any other. You would possibly assume you want to be training the explicit festival actions year-round—and all the time with maximal weights—however any recreation that asks you to get more potent calls for periodization. You merely may not make important development in the recreation in case you are continuously hauling round soul-crushing quantities of weight.
Anthony Fuhrman, the 105-kilogram World’s Strongest Man and Team Bodybuilding.com athlete, says there’s no true low season for strongman. This makes having a wise program that contains as a lot hypertrophy paintings as imaginable much more vital, in particular in case you are a novice or beginner in the recreation.
Depending on apparatus, time, and the way his physique is responding, Fuhrman says he’ll incorporate upper quantity coaching into his regimen, whilst a competition approaches. In a recreation that does not all the time have a constant festival agenda, it is very important pressure your personal hypertrophy levels and assume year-round reasonably than simply the subsequent 6-Eight weeks at a time.
Here are a number of causes for protecting hypertrophy to your radar when coaching for strongman competitions:
Reason 1: Increased Muscle Size
Considering that the definition of hypertrophy is a rise in the dimension of skeletal muscle, rising larger muscle groups is an obtrusive derivative of high-volume coaching. Strongman is a recreation the place you might be making an attempt to boost maximal weights, no longer appearing off your body, such a lot of athletes do not recognize the significance of hypertrophy coaching. Still, the extra muscle you could have, the better your power attainable, and including that muscle calls for devoted hypertrophy levels, although it method swallowing your satisfaction and taking occasional breaks out of your max-out days.
Reason 2: Faster Recovery
Using upper reps and lighter weights creates enhanced blood waft, which is helping elevate oxygen and vitamins to muscle groups in the means of therapeutic. Hypertrophy coaching regularly objectives smaller muscle teams and stabilizers which might be used throughout compound actions however no longer focused with the similar metabolic pressure and stress they get with quantity coaching.
“This differs from the traditional 80-90 percent [of max] work at lower reps,” Fuhrman says. “The problem with putting that amount of stress on your body on a regular basis is that eventually your tendons, ligaments, and bones will break down from the effects of repetitive sheer force.”
Reason Three: Allows Room for Conditioning
The advantages of conditioning come with progressed physique composition, cardio capability, energy output, and paintings capability. This is right irrespective of your recreation, and it undoubtedly applies to strongman.
As Fuhrman places it, “Conditioning is like the ugly stepchild of strength sports—a lot of athletes won’t do it, but the ones at the top of their field do.”
His personal regimen contains no less than 20 mins of conditioning carried out thrice a week, at the side of two high-intensity period coaching (HIIT) classes a week. The HIIT lasts 10-20 mins and can most often be one thing like “every minute on the minute” (EMOM) Three-rep squats for 20 mins overall. Fuhrman additionally loves to superset rowing with mild push presses for as many rounds as imaginable for a preset period of time.
The conditioning does not need to be strongman explicit. The prowler, sled paintings, and cleans and snatches (in case you are acquainted with the method) can paintings neatly. Even proscribing your relaxation sessions between units throughout your common coaching classes can lend a hand.
Grow Like a Strongman Should
Below is a pattern of what a hypertrophy exercise would possibly seem like for Fuhrman in his low season. This is an upper-body day primarily based round the press motion.
“The basic principles to follow are to choose a priming exercise for the area to be improved—in this case, lateral raises for shoulders—and 2-3 compound exercises followed by 5-6 hypertrophy exercises,” he says. “It is important in strongman to be able to move heavy weight over a given time, not just for one rep, which is why what would normally be strength-based exercises are [done] higher-rep.”