Close grips on Texas Method - Volume Day or Intensity Day? Close grips on Texas Method - Volume Day or Intensity Day?

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Thread: Close grips on Texas Method - Volume Day or Intensity Day?

  1. #1
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    Default Close grips on Texas Method - Volume Day or Intensity Day?

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    I am putting in close grip benches for 5x5, sets across, into Texas Method. Should I program them on Volume day or Intensity day? Also, is it recommended to do them flat backed or with the same arch as my normal bench? I am running the bench only variation of Texas Method with pressing on Wednesday, as my goal is to get my abysmal 200x3x5 end of LP bench at a 200 lb bodyweight to the point where it is somewhat competitive.

    I appreciate any advice,

    Jack Morrison

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    A better idea might be to do your regular bench for volume and intensity days, then add close grip on the midweek recovery/technique day for 2x5 with about 80% of what you used on volume day. Start with 65-70% since close grip will be new to you, and build it up over a month or two to 80-85% and hold it roughly in that range for a while

    Close grip substituting for your regular bench isn't a magic pill that's going to solve your problems.
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  3. #3
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    Should I do them flat backed or with my normal bench arch?

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    I'd do them with your normal set up, Jack.

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    I kinda like them for a few sets on intensity day for the following reasons (1) if you tend to need more volume this is a good way to up it (2) volume day is already very long (3) you will be “primed” and less fatigued after a few heavy sets of regular bench to hit some big rep PRs on the CGB. For sets of 5-8 on CG you’ll be doing a lot less weight than say singles across on regular bench. It’ll feel great coming out of the rack with that huge offset and you’ll perform better.

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    Ya Andy makes a really good point that I actually sometimes use in programming for my lifters that I don't know why I forgot about when I replied to your post. A couple sets as back-offs on intensity day after your 2 triples or whatever, works quite well.
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    Both you guys referred to multiple sets of bench on intensity day. What do you guys think of the standard 1 set of 5 for normal bench compared to 2 triples?

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    I won't speak for Andy, but based on things I've heard him say or seen him write over the years, I think we're in agreement that we both like the introduction of triples either right away or really early on in the intermediate phase, as both a mental break from the LP which is comprised entirely of fives, and a new type of stress that the lifter hasn't experienced before. That's an important part of the intermediate phase, and this is a great way to introduce it. If I stay on the same basic programming structure, I often do come back to fives for 1-2 weeks on intensity day the second time around through the cycle, and the lifter inevitably sets a PR or two for 5 reps, usually with gas in the tank, with 5-15 lbs more than the weight they failed at the end of their LP a few months earlier.
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    Just now I'm paying attention to not bouncing the bar off my chest. I have remedied this in the past, before my SSLP, by benching with a one second pause on the chest. It worked out OK. Why is touch and go superior to a one second pause? Any tips on fixing a chest bounce?

  10. #10
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    Because it allows the use of the stretch reflex and thus more weight to be handled by the relevant musculature, and probably more motor unit involvement - just like a squat (unqualified) is the primary, more fundamental and important version, as opposed to a paused squat. Paused squats and paused bench have their place as supplemental lifts for more advanced trainees (usually paused squats being more useful and important a squat variation than paused bench is a bench variation, at least for non-PL competitors), but the primary, fundamental version is unpaused: use of the stretch reflex, more weight handled, a more stimulative stress.

    I suspect much of the popularity of the paused bench is because it's the competitive version in powerlifting. "Doing comp bench today for 5x7 @7.5 today" has become the new "how much ya bench, bro?" But being the competitive version in PL isn't a good argument for whether it's the best way to do something for general strength training; it's a fine starting point for the discussion, but not the end of the discussion.

    Rip has already talked about the problems that arise due to a pause with judges commands being required as the competitive version of the bench in powerlifting. I understand why the pause was implemented - presumably so as not to reward lifters willing to risk their thoracic integrity with huge ribcage trampolining reps. But the cure is likely worse than the disease, and could likely be solved by some good rules and consistent judging without requiring any commands, and probably without a pause.

    How do you stop bouncing too hard? Simple. Slow your descent down just a bit and quit doing it.
    Last edited by Michael Wolf; 05-04-2019 at 08:34 PM.
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