The Progression

 

This following progression was developed with the help of being an active practicing member
of the
National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA)

along with many, many years of experience in lifting, coaching, and teaching. 
 

EnduranceStrengthPower
IndividualizedPeaking CycleComparison Chart


To see a systematic list for Teaching the Progression
Teaching/Setting up the Class
The teaching progression is for both beginning strength training
 and advanced strength training.

Phase I - Muscular Endurance

All beginning lifters and/or young lifters, and experienced lifters who have not lifted for several weeks should start off doing an endurance lifting program, which I call Phase I.  Muscular endurance can be achieved by choosing light weight and by completing high repetitions with moderate to high sets for each exercise.  The rest interval is short.  There should be low to moderate intensity/stress on the muscles at work.

  • Light weight selection (60% - 65% of 1 Repetition Maximum)

  • High repetition (10 - 15 repetitions)

  • Moderate to high sets (3 - 4 sets moderate) (4 - 5 sets high)

  • Rest interval is short, 30 seconds to 1 minute rest between sets.

  • Concentration on lifting form is encouraged over immediate strength gains.

  When the lifter can easily complete 15 repetitions on all sets, then the lifter should increase the weight 5 - 10 pounds on all sets.
(Small muscle groups need small increases in weight, 5 lbs; large muscle groups need larger increases in weight, 10 lbs. 
Additionally, a younger, inexperienced lifter should always make small increases in weight at all times to avoid injury.)

  • Beginning strength training is started at this phase.

  • Circuit training is taught during this phase. (30 seconds lifting interval, with 30 seconds rest interval)
    (see
    Strength Training Manual for a suggested procedures for setting up a circuit training program for pre-adolescent/adolescent and Beginning & Inexperienced students.

  • Cardiovascular endurance can be improved with the use of circuit training.

  • Benefits from this program would help the following athletes: Swimmers, Wrestlers, Distance runners, Soccer players, Tennis players, Golfers, various individual sports and endurance sports athletes.

Phase II - Muscular Strength

This lifting routine is a great for an overall strength training program, for all types of individuals who are interested in general strength gains.  Muscular strength can be achieved by choosing a moderate weight, and by completing moderate repetitions with moderate sets for each exercise.  The rest interval is moderate.  There should be moderate to high intensity/stress on the muscles at work.

  • Moderate weight selection (65% - 75% of 1RM)

  • Moderate repetition (8 - 10 reps.)

  • Moderate sets (3 - 4 sets)

  • The weight selection in this strength program can be at various percentiles.
    Usually the lifter will start with 65% of 1RM and work up to 75% of 1RM.

  • A common routine would be 1st set at 65%, 2nd set at 70% and the 3rd set at 75%.

  • The repetitions would be 8 - 10 on each set.

  • The rest interval is moderate, 1-1/2 minutes to 2 minutes rest between sets.

  • Basic strength development and strength gains can be achieved with this program for all sports or for basic individual fitness.

  • Core lifts are to be completed first, auxiliary lifts are to be completed after the core lifts.
    Multi-jointed lifts can be taught during this phase of strength training.  
    Multi-jointed lifts are: Power cleans, Hang cleans, Push press, Snatch or any Olympic style lift.

  When the lifter can easily complete 10 repetitions on all sets, then the lifter should increase the weight 5 - 10 pounds on all sets.
(Small muscle groups need small increases in weight, 5 lbs.; large muscle groups need larger increases in weight, 10 lbs.
Additionally, a younger, inexperienced lifter should always make small increases in weight at all times to avoid injury.)

Phase III - Muscular Power

This strength training program is for people who are interested in large (bulk) muscular gains, for explosive type sports/activities.  High Stress on the muscular system is experienced in this program.  Muscular power can be achieved by choosing a high weight and by completing low repetitions with high sets for each exercise.  The rest interval is long.  There should be high intensity/stress on the muscles at work.

  • High weight selection (70% - 95% of 1RM)
  • Low repetitions (2 - 6 reps.)
  • High sets (4 - 5 sets)
  • The weight selection in this strength program can be at various percentiles. 
    Usually the lifter will start with 70% of 1RM and work up to 90% of 1RM
    .
    A common routine would be;
    1st set - 5 reps at 70% / 2nd set - 5 reps at 75% / 3rd set - 5 reps at 80%
    4th set - 5 reps at 85% / and the 5th set - 5 reps at 90 %.
  • The rest interval is long in this phase, 2 to 3 minutes rest between sets.
    (Never rest longer than 3 minutes)
  The repetitions are 2 -6 reps. on each set.  On the last set it is common to fail before completing all 5 to 6 repetitions, however at lease 2 repetitions should be completed on the 5th set.  When the lifter can complete all 5 or 6 repetition on the 5th set, they need to increase the weight 5 to 10 pounds on each set.
(Small muscle groups need small increases in weight, 5 lbs., large muscle groups need larger increase in weight, 10 lbs.)
  • Another common program that can be completed for muscular power would be a heavy ladder routine. 
    This ladder workout would be as follows: 
    1st set - 8 reps at 70% / 2nd set - 6 reps at 75% /
    3rd set - 4 reps at 85%
    and the 4th set - 2 reps at 90%. 
  • Powerful strength development and explosive strength can be achieved with the muscular power program.  Explosive type sports or for basic power lifting competition.  Core lifts should be completed first.  Auxiliary lifts should be completed after the core lifts. 
  • A 5 day a week program can be set up as follows: Monday/Wednesday/Fridays core lifts, Tuesday/Thursday auxiliary lifts.

  Currently a very common lifting routine is the SPLIT 4 ROUTINE. 
Split 4 routine is upper body exercises on Mondays/Thursdays and lower body exercises on Tuesdays/Fridays. 
Core lifts are completed first then auxiliary.  
Mult-jointed lifts are usually taught during this phase of strength training.  
Mult-jointed lifts are: Power cleans, Hang cleans, Push press, Snatch or any Olympic style lift.

Phase IV - Individualized Strength Training Programs

This strength training Phase is for people who are experienced lifters who are looking for variety in their workout program.  This programs will  feature cross-betweens the other phases, endurance, strength and power.  Low, Medium, and High Stress on the muscular system is experienced in this program.  Muscular power can be achieved by choosing a high weight and by completing low repetitions with high sets for each exercise.  The rest interval is moderate.  There should be moderate to high intensity/stress on the muscles at work.

  • High weight selection (70% - 95% of 1RM)
  • Moderate repetitions (2 -10 reps.)
  • High sets (4 - 5 sets)
  • The lifter will choose between a heavy ladder routine or a light ladder routine.

Light Ladder Routine - 4 Sets at various weight selection with various repetitions.

  • Set 1 - 10 Reps at 60% of 1RM
  • Set 2 -   8 Reps at 65% of 1RM
  • Set 3 -   6 Reps at 75% of 1RM
  • Set 4 -   4 Reps at 85% of 1RM - HEAVY SET
  • Set 5 - 10 Reps at 65% of 1RM - Warm-down set

Heavy Ladder Routine - 4 Sets at various weight selection with various repetitions.

  • Set 1 - 10 Reps at 60% of 1RM
  • Set 2 -   6 Reps at 70% of 1RM
  • Set 3 -   4 Reps at 80% of 1RM
  • Set 4 -   2 Reps at 90% of 1RM - HEAVY SET
  • Set 5 -   6 Reps at 65% of 1RM - Warm-down set

  The repetitions are 2 -10 reps. , dependant on which ladder you choose.  On the heavy set, it is common to fail before completing all of the prescribed repetitions.  When the lifter can complete all of the prescribed  repetition on the heavy set, they need to increase the weight 5 to 10 pounds on each set.
(Small muscle groups need small increases in weight, 5 lbs., large muscle groups need larger increase in weight, 10 lbs.)


12 Week Peaking Cycle
This program was taken from the United State Weightlifting Federation.
  It is and excellent heavy lifting routine for athletes who are involved in explosive sports/events,
 who need to peak their strength at a certain point or time of competition.
It is HIGH INTENSITY/STRESS, LOW VOLUME, PROGRAM. 
Be sure your athlete has been working out with weights for some time, before going to the program.
This program is best for:  PRE-SEASON WORKOUT FOR FOOTBALL PLAYERS/LINEMEN, 
AND PRE-SEASON/IN-SEASON WORKOUT FOR SHOT & DISCUS THROWERS, 
WHO ARE PEAKING FOR A STATE OR NATIONAL EVENT.

Comparison Chart

 

Endurance
(Phase I)

Basic Strength
(Phase II)

Power
(Phase III)

Individualized
(Phase IV)

Sets

3 to 4 sets
(moderate)

3 to 4 sets
(moderate)

4 to 6 sets
(high)

3 to 6 sets
(moderate to high)

Repetitions

10 to 15 reps
(high)

8 to 10 reps
(moderate)

2 to 6 reps
(low)

2 to 12 reps
(low to moderate)

Intensity

60% to 70% of 1RM
(low)

70% to 85% of 1RM (moderate)

80% to 95% of 1RM
(high)

70% to 90% of 1RM
(moderate to high)

Rest Interval

30 seconds to 1 minute
(short)

1 to 2 minutes
(moderate)

2 to 3 minutes
(long)

1 to 3 minutes
(moderate to long)

Benefits

Best for all endurance sports and to increase speed in muscle movement.
Best for all pre-adolescent, adolescent, beginning lifters, and inexperienced lifters.  Also a good program for transitioning from one routine to another and to create variation in your lifting routine.  Specificity can be used in this lifting program.

Best for all around basic strength training with multiple benefits for almost all types of athletes and for non-competitive people who just want to increase their strength level.  Good secondary lifting program for semi-experienced lifters and for semi-experienced adolescent students who are ready for an increase in intensity and/or who are ready to add more weight and achieve more strength gains.  Specificity can be used in this lifting program.

Best for explosive type sports and athletes who need to exert maximal effort in a short time span.  Usually will build large bulky muscles.  Lifting technique is extremely important to avoid the high possibility of injury.  Usually includes Olympic type lifts such as; power cleans, hang cleans, high weighted squats, hang snatch, and snatch.  Specificity can be used in this lifting program.  Not a lifting routine for pre-adolescent or adolescent, or beginning lifters and/or inexperienced lifters..

Best for cross training and can be used as a transitional routine when going from one lifting routine to another.  This lifting program is associated with a lifting routine called “light ladder” or “heavy ladder”.  Athletes or people who need or want a change (variation) in their lifting routine will like this program.  Specificity can be used in this lifting program.  Not a program from pre-adolescent or adolescent, or beginning lifters and/or inexperienced lifters.


To download the Comparison Chart
click here
Comparison Chart

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