Matt Ladewski is the owner of The Region Barbell Club in Munster, Indiana and has been involved in the sport of powerlifting for 16 years. As he continues to pursue bigger numbers of his own on the platform, his attention has recently shifted to coaching his many athletes, including a WPF and an AWPC champion. A columnist and the social media manager of elitefts, Matt shares his training knowledge and experience as he writes about both his own training and the coaching of his athletes. Matt's best competition lifts include an 835-pound squat, a 550-pound bench press, and an 800-pound deadlift.
When I started my powerlifting journey, Louie Simmons tried to teach me to bench press like Fred Bolt. It was clear that I was not Fred Bolt, but more importantly, I did not have the musculature at that time to bench with my feet out. Here are some tips for all you long-armed lifters to create a great bench.
You down with GPP? You know, General Physical Preparedness. If not, it's time to get back in shape to dramatically and positively affect your total strength. You can start this process with a medicine ball.
Why not have a dedicated cycle to focus on while transitioning out of some downtime after a meet? No machines at your gym? No problem. This was written for a hardcore powerlifting-friendly gym with limited access to machines.
A large amount of blood into the shoulder feels great, and over time will help them to round out. These eight exercises are easy to do anywhere, and they work great for extra workouts. Here are three shoulder workouts to get you started.
The more advanced you are, the longer the stretches between records become. If you're in that position (trust me, I've been there before), consider doing some supplemental exercises. The ones listed here will help boost your sumo deadlift.
When it comes to selecting meet attempts, there are a lot of things to take into account. The big one is your goal, but the strategy for getting that goal varies depending on lots of factors. You wouldn't use the same process for selecting your opener and for winning — at least, I hope you don't.
Not everyone is as lucky as me when it comes to seeing some of the most amazing moments in powerlifting. Since that's the case, I'm sharing memories from the archives starring Chuck Vogelpohl, George Halbert, Steve Goggins, Travis Rogers, and Oleksandr Kutcher.
Instead of listening to the same old radio station on your daily commute, why not learn something new from these podcasts? Stick your Airpods in your ears or connect your phone in your car's radio via Bluetooth and listen away!
I can't get over how versatile the American Cambered Grip Bar is. You can use it forward and backward, giving you a total of 8 grip options. Flip it over, you've got a total of 16. I've found 250 options, and I'm sure there are more to find.
Look before you leap into training right back after your last meet because the next four to six weeks can (and will) set up your next cycle for success... or for failure. Take time to reflect on that. Success or failure... which one will you choose?
Packing the basics is just half the battle. Meet sites can be cold, uncomfortable, and might be far from easy access to good food. All variables need to be taken into consideration while packing for meet day... and these 44 items will help you cover your bases.
The meet prep beast is going to rear its ugly heads at you sometimes, and its mugs come in many forms: injuries, stress, or a lousy no-show training partner. When one of them tries to bite, it's best to have a flexible plan of action that helps you nimbly dodge from the monster's jaws.
If you are a bench-only lifter, an older beat-up powerlifter, or just really need to get in some lower body training in, these six exercises will cover all three of those bases. These exercises are my workaround to hammer the lower and upper body while keeping a strong bench.
I believe that the confidence weight releasers can build is almost as important as any other factor I talk about in this article. If you want to improve your dynamic effort work, give these sample cycles a try.
This eight-week sample program is a snapshot of a few cycles written for a former competitive weightlifter (local/state level). Michael wanted to get back into shape, lose weight, and include some weightlifting movements.
If you are looking to move up the ranks then extra workouts are the way to add extra volume, bring up weak muscle groups, and improve your general physical preparedness, mobility, flexibility, and body composition.
No matter your strength, bodyweight, or training history, pull-ups may be a challenge for you. If this is the case, follow this simple progression and you'll have your first unassisted pull-up in no time.
I have looked at my personal success and observed who in my life has helped me move toward my goals. These are the types of people who can bend my ear, grab my attention, and then push or pull me toward the place I need to be.
The goal-setting pyramid I use for my clients and myself helps to easily clarify daily, weekly, and monthly needs for continual progress — and when things slow down, it speeds up troubleshooting and gets you back on track.
With my Bare Bones program, you can see that great progress can be made with minimal equipment, but there are some tools that make things easier. If I built a home gym all over again, these are the first things I would buy.
When thinking about conjugate training, we often look at all the specialty bars, bands, chains and other goodies that we use in training. But when you boil it down, conjugate training doesn't need those things.
Most of the time I ignore what I don’t agree with, but considering I am three weeks out from my meet and I have been a grumpy bastard the last few weeks, I am going to write about a few stupid things I've seen.
Using the Conjugate Method has been one of the most rewarding and fun things I've ever done, but it requires ownership and a tenacity to keep looking for answers. Here are four things to avoid as you begin your quest.