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Huge Guys With Bad Form

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning' started by DBradD, Feb 3, 2006.

  1. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I realize I'm old and that much of my knowledge might be obsolete by now. Conventional advice used to be to use good form on all exercises and lift the weights at a moderate to slow speed - talking bodybuilding and most powerlifting, not olympic style lifting which has a completely different goal. Examples would be to not sway all over creation while doing barbell curls or sling the weights up during laterals.

    I’ve noticed at my last two gyms that the monstrously huge guys never follow the old idea of form/speed. Of the four or five huge guys I’ve watched, they all seem to just throw the weights around using what we’d used to call terrible form. For bentover rows, they’re doing half a stiff-legged deadlift to help keep it going, with bentover laterals being similar. For lat pulldowns, swinging the body very far forward and backwards, just yanking the bar down to the chest. Is there method to this apparent madness? These guys are monstrous, like multiple bench press sets of 8 with 405, 18-19” arms, 315 for multiple sets of behind the neck press, etc.

    Is the idea of maintaining strict form and typical speeds just old? One part of this makes some sense to me. Take bentover laterals for example. When I do these, failure is defined by the darn weight just won’t get anywhere near the top, but there is more energy left in those muscles. If I slung the weight, then I could probably use 20-50% more weight for the same number of reps. I’m wondering if the overall intensity and punishment would be more using this approach. I'm not talking about what we would formerly call cheating to get another rep or two - these guys do just about every rep like this.

    Maybe the 4-5 guys I've watched are weird, but I can't help but notice the pattern.

    DBD
     
  2. California Jack

    California Jack Millennium Member

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    DBD,

    I think for the most part I agree with your comments about form. However, I'm not sure what you mean by "typical speeds". Depending on one's goals, I think a case can be made for moving weight as fast as one can. If you're lifting heavy enough,that won't be very fast.

    Just MHO,
    Jack
     

  3. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I was typing about typical bodybuilding, and to a lesser degree, powerlifting. An old general rule was 2 seconds for the positive and 3 seconds for the negative, not yanking it up for the positive and just dropping it for the negative, which is more what I see these guys doing.

    DBD
     
  4. California Jack

    California Jack Millennium Member

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    DBD,

    I think as far as BB goes, rep cadence may still have it's place. But for strength sport training, I'm not sure, but I don't think many are worried about it. With the obvious exception of speed or dynamic training used in programs such as Westside, where you'd want to move the bar as fast as you can.

    I guess if I'm pulling singles at 95% trying to count to 2 on the way up and 4 on the way down just doesn't seem viable.

    Jack
     
  5. DBradD

    DBradD

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    Jack:

    These guys are bodybuilders, waxed hair and all, ;) so I tossed considerations such as you typed. They're doing reps (maybe 6-10) with typical bodybuilding exercises.

    Regards,
    DBD
     
  6. California Jack

    California Jack Millennium Member

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    Bodybuilders? Waxed hair? Egads man, run!
     
  7. b8es_

    b8es_

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    Maybe they are going more towards strength workouts than bodybuilding style? I did the bodybuilding style with tons of sets with mediocre weight with the perfect cadence for years on and off, it didnt work very well for me. Now I am doing more powerlifting style, moving heavy weights as fast as possible, but with good form, and I am getting bigger doing that. I saw a dvd of Mike Ruggeria doing lateral raises with heavy weight, and he was slinging them up pretty quickly, many would say its bad form. That guy is huge and an elite powerlifter, so it cant be all bad I guess.
     
  8. walangkatapat

    walangkatapat Millennium Member

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    :alex:
     
  9. DBradD

    DBradD

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    Because these guys are so huge, I started thinking that they might be onto something. Then I started thinking about the physics of the situation. The same energy is being expended because the same change in potential energy results whether or not the weight moves slowly to the top or is slung there. I think that short-duration force would be much higher than any force that could generated statically. I'm not so sure this second option would not result in more intensity and hopefully growth.

    I think I'm going to go halfway and add at least two cheat reps to the end of each set and see how that works.

    Maybe this if full of it - I'm just brainstorming before heading to the gym on a Saturday night.

    DBD
     
  10. Accord

    Accord

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    Look at the physiques of the big guys who throw heavy weights around and then look at the physiques of the big guys who have perfect form, you'll notice a big difference.
     
  11. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I hear ya--but all the big guys I've seen fall into the first category!

    DBD
     
  12. Accord

    Accord

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    Look at how disproportionately large their forearms are compared to the rest of their bodies.
     
  13. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I'm going to rename you the Riddler or something similar. LOL. I can only guess what you mean by that!

    DBD
     
  14. Accord

    Accord

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    Haha

    You can usually tell who has bad form by looking at their physiques and massive forearms and average everything else area dead giveaway. When they're throwing the weights around, putting their whole bodies into the movement, doing whatever it takes to move the weight, the majority of the time it's the forearms doing most of the work.
     
  15. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I'll have to pay more attention next time. They just look huge all over, but I'll look harder.

    Also, I think I now have a new forearms routine! That's a huge positive result of this thread!

    DBD
     
  16. Mister Joshua

    Mister Joshua Sig Addiction

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    That is quite possibly the silliest thing I have ever read.
     
  17. thaddeus

    thaddeus Millennium Member

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    I think that is a great answer to the original question.


    I spent over a decade keeping strict form and then i took on a coach who is a professional bodybuilding trainer for over 30 years, and he told me this:

    "You can get stronger without getting bigger, but you can't get bigger without being stronger".


    And he told me to pack on some muscle by getting stronger.

    At that point he put me on a heavy lifting routine where doing heavier weights using some portions of "bad form" to handle those heavier weights for more reps to failure. I was shocked to be told to do what I considered "bad form" to get the weight up at times, but it worked, I put on muscle fast and it is good-looking muscle, not all bunched up or whatever they tell you will happen from doing short lifting motions at times.

    My trainer says that "every powerlifter has the body of a bodybuilder under all that fat, if they would just watch their diet they would look amazing". So anyway, "bodybuilding" motions are often very controlled, slow, with strict pathway form. "Powerlifting" motions are a bit jerky'er and sometimes you have to "cheat" a little to get the weight up. But if you do good powerlifting negative reps to failure, you'll see the muscle come on.