The EFS Collegiate Power Rack
By Jim Wendler
What makes the Collegiate Power Rack such a great piece of equipment? Just about everything!
1. The Sumo Base
The sumo base has become the signature feature on EFS racks. The sumo base is imperative for training athletes, especially taller ones. Most racks are built to accommodate a slightly wider than shoulder width stance for the average person. But since many athletes are well above the average, the rack no longer will accommodate their leg length.
The typical solution in an average rack is to have the athlete’s squat with a narrow stance. The big problem with this is form and safety. When an athlete squats with a stance that is slightly wider than shoulder width, he is able to sit back and keep his knees from going forward. The narrower the stance, the less likely this is going to happen. If an athlete can’t sit back or if their knees are moving forward, this puts undue stress on the knees and less emphasis on the hips and hamstrings. Since most athletes need to develop their hips and hamstrings and keep the knee stress to a minimum, squatting in a rack with a sumo base makes sense. I guess you can squat outside the rack, but why buy a power rack? That would defeat the whole purpose!
The bottom line is this: if you have any athlete that is over 6’2” tall, you need to get a rack that can help accommodate his size and help him to squat safely and correctly.
2. Textured Posts
This feature allows for the racks to look good for a longer period of time. These are featured on the horizontal posts of the rack and come in black only. Since we’ve added the EFS Collegiate Power Rack to our arsenal, the textured posts have been huge with all universities and private training facilities. They look great and are built to last.
Chin-ups have been a staple of exercise programs since the dawn of strength training. Why? Because they work. Few exercises allow you to develop your upper back and lats like chin ups. We offer a number of different chin bar options.
Option 1. Straight Bar – The chin bar is probably the most known and most popular. It is a simple straight bar that allows for pull-ups and chin-ups. Also, this bar easily holds abdominal straps for hanging leg raises.
Option 2. Monkey Grip – This is the newest chin bar and probably my favorite. This bar has two slightly cambered, parallel bars. These are X inches apart. In between these bars there are 5 parallel grips. The Monkey Chin bar allows you to do wide grip pull-ups, chin-ups and parallel grip pulls. This bar will allow you to do just about any kind of pull-up variation.
Option 3. Straight Bar Fat Bar – Fat bar training has gotten very popular and with good reason. Improving your grip strength will do wonders for your overall strength. This fat bar measures 2” in diameter.
Option 4. Swivel Handles – This chin bar option allows you to change your grip during your set. Many athletes begin with a pronated grip and end with a neutral or supinated grip.
Option 5. Parallel Grip Handles – These option features a slightly cambered chin bar with two parallel grip handles. This will allow you to perform wide grip, medium grip and parallel grip pull-ups.
Set 1. Rod and Pipe Safety Pins – These pins are what we have used at EFS since we started selling equipment. These safety pins are perfect for rack deadlifting and bench lockouts. The pipe fits over a rod and helps disperse the energy (and thus saving the bar) of dropping a bar onto the pins. These pins are the workhorses; they work well for spotting and for partial movements.
The band pegs have become the most popular option on EFS racks. In fact, most companies are now trying to follow our lead and put their version of band attachments on their racks. Unfortunately, most of the get it wrong. Our racks feature 6 band pegs at the bottom of the rack and 5 band pegs at the top. If you choose to have a pull-up bar on the rack, the top band pegs are reduced to 4 per side.
By having these pegs, you can adjust the tension of the bands on your squatting, deadlifting and bench pressing. Most companies offer only 1 band peg on each side, which really limits the amount of tension.
The band pegs at the bottom allow you to perform bench presses, board presses, floor presses, rack lockouts, squats, box squats, single leg squats, deadlifts and rack deadlifts with added band tension.
The band pegs at the top of the rack allow you to perform squats, deadlifts, bench presses and any kind of pressing motion with the aid of bands. This is often called the lightened method which allows for an overload of bar weight. This is a great way of increasing the amount of weight at the top of the movement and increasing the confidence of the lifter.
Band Storage – One of the biggest challenges of any coach is keeping their weight room clean and clutter-free. The band storage on the Collegiate Rack allows each rack to have its own set of bands. This will prevent your coaches and athletes from having to hunt around the weight room, looking for bands.
Bar Holders – These are placed at the back end of the power rack, at the end of weight storage. Like the chain and band storage, the bar holders help keep your weight room organized. Plus, it’s a great way to keep your specialty bars (cambered squat bar, safety squat bar, fat bar, etc.) close at hand.
Having a good set of j-hooks is imperative to lifting well. The j-hooks design is the difference: it is big enough to catch the bar and ensure safety, but small enough to ensure that you are staying tight. Let me explain. When you bench press, you must keep your lats tight and your upper back pulled together. This will help maintain correct bar path and increase stability. If the lips on j-hooks are too high, this will force you to push the bar off of them and lose the back positioning you had at the beginning. On our j-hooks, the lips will allow you to “pull” the bar off the rack (with the aid of the spotter) and keep your back as tight as possible. It may seem like a small thing, but anyone that lifts weights knows how small things can make a big difference. These also feature UHMW, which helps save them from getting scratched. The j-hooks will match the color of the rack and the UHMW is black.
These are a brand new option at EFS and something that is pretty simple, but incredibly effective. This option can be used for two different things; spotting and for lifting. For spotting, the chains give you another option for ensuring your athletes safety. By attaching the chains at the top, you allow the athlete to attempt rep maxes with confidence. If they do fail, they can simply rest the barbell in the chains.
These can also be used for chain suspended good mornings, squats and bench presses. To do these, place the bar inside the chains and place it at the proper height. From this position, get underneath the bar and perform a concentric only lift. So what is the difference between placing a bar in the chains versus placing it on safety pins? The chains allow you to move the bar into the proper starting position. Second, the chains allow you to take a wider grip on the bar during squats and good mornings. This is a great option to have with bigger or less flexible athletes.
This is a very simple option but extremely effective. This will allow you to place the safety pins and j-hooks in the correct holes with ease.
10. Hole spacing
This comes standard on all of our 3x3 power racks. Most power racks feature 3-4” hole spacing which does not allow a lot of variation in height. So many athletes are forced to perform a ¼ squat to get the bar off of the hooks or a very heavy calf raise. This pin hole spacing is also great for bench training and performing pin pulls.
There are four platform options that can be added to the rack:
The platforms are made from 2" x 2" x 11 gauge frames. The construction consists of 2 and 3 layers of wood and rubber and the total thickness is 1 ½ ". The rubber area is 2 layers of 3/4" rubber and the wood is real oak. The multi-layer design is and feels extremely solid and protects the room's base and floor. When attached to racks a ramp is included to allow for benches to be rolled on and off with ease.
EFS offers two ways to customize your Collegiate Power Rack. Your custom logo can be placed on the oak platform of your rack in whatever color you wish. Also, a laser cut logo can be cut into the power rack (this feature is at the top of power rack) and can feature your schools name. This is a great way to individualize your power racks and develop school pride.
Because of the number of athletes that coaches work with, we know that space is always going to be an issue. That is why we offer many rack variations to help you accommodate larger groups. Some of these include:
All of the above can have platforms attached to each side. Whatever you need, we can do for you.
Since every school and every coach has a different program, we offer many different options that can be added to your power rack and platform combination. Here are some of the most popular options:
For more information click here, or contact Matt Goodwin at 888 854 8806
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