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Old 11-08-2013, 09:10 AM   #1
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Default Well rounded vs Specialized training

I have always been a proponent of well rounded training but recently I have been doing smolov and seen my squat explode and my DL get dragged along with it.

Wondering which people prefer and why?

Love to hear all input
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Old 11-08-2013, 09:36 AM   #2
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I personally prefer well rounded training!

Basically, I am not particularly big or strong, and although i would like huge numbers on lifts, its not the be-all and end-all for me. I am more concerned with staying healthy and strong as i get older and keeping some sort of reasonable shape and a lowish body fat.

I think if you are looking to compete, or you are a recreational power lifter then specialised training is a great idea, after all getting a big number on the big 3 is gonna keep you with a fairly good level of strength and health.

It obviously very personal to your goals, but I will never be a powerlifter and dont really want to be, so I am not going to train like that.

That being said I can definitely see the benefit of doing specialised routines and I can totally see why most people on this board would train like that as most are intemediate to advanced with their lifts and/or experience, but I think if you are beginner to intemediate in your experience and/or lifts then just general training is going to work wonders...

just my 2p worth
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Old 11-08-2013, 10:22 AM   #3
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From a mathematical perspective (just worked it out on paper because I wanted to see if math really carries over into important things) the difference is in what is increasing not how much the total increase is. Smolov focuses on squat and is a 3 month program. They tell you to expect to add 80 total pounds after both major cycles. My drunk russian bench focus tends to add 30 lbs after 8 weeks (2 months). I will also estimate (because I haven't done DL focus in awhile) that it would be roughly the same as squat for intermediate lifter (tends to drop off faster in experienced lifters after about 700 lbs).

The problem is focusing on one stops or massively slows progress in the other two. Running 6 months of specialized training (for me) yields an overall gains of 125 lbs to my total over half a year. This means that each month I would gain an average of about 20 lbs. This is great until you realize that all an intermediate lifter would need to do is add 5 lbs to bench 7.5 to squat and DL each month too keep up with that...

PS this is a one person study so it is highly prone to error.
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HT: 5'10" WT: 220
Deadlift 455 Squat 405
Bench 355 Push-press 275

Last edited by MadScientistOfMaB; 11-08-2013 at 10:23 AM. Reason: add PS
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Old 11-08-2013, 10:26 AM   #4
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All the above said I love specialized training. It is great to see one of your lifts shoot up even if the others stay the same. It helps me stay motivated and makes me look forward to squats each day. This is why I stick with specialized cycles but according to basic algebra the gains are the same.

This is probably why you see both in high level amateur powerlifters
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Nothing exceeds like excess.

HT: 5'10" WT: 220
Deadlift 455 Squat 405
Bench 355 Push-press 275
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Old 11-08-2013, 10:32 AM   #5
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I think the closer to advanced you are the more you need to specialise in particular lifts to gain a good amount of progress... you cant keep progressing linearly across all lifts I dont think. The closer to your potential in a particular lift the harder progress becomes, and as you will reach your potential in some lifts quicker than others(as all things are never equal) then the more advanced you are the more specialised training will benefit you I would have thought, but I am really no expert on being an advance lifter lol!! These are just my musings!!
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Old 11-08-2013, 02:00 PM   #6
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I do both. I train with frequency but moderate volume. Frequency without volume, aka fatigue management, can be sustained for long periods of time. You need to have a strong base though and know how to chose the minimal assistance work you do wisely.
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