Madcow’s 5×5 Review: The Most Popular Routine Ever

The release of the PowerliftingToWin Novice Program and the launch of the PowerliftingToWin forums has thus far been a tremendous success that has far exceeded my expectations. But here at PowerliftingToWin, there is no resting upon one’s laurels and there are no days off. The show must go on!   With that said, it is time for us to begin reviewing more intermediate and advanced powerlifting programs. I suspect this… Read More »

The Best Powerlifting Program for Beginners: PTW Novice Program!

      This book is now out of date. For the most current edition of the PowerliftingToWin Novice Program, please see ProgrammingToWin.       Click here to receive your free copies of the PowerliftingToWin Novice Program eBook and Workout Calculator Spreadsheet!   Click here for the KG version of the spreadsheet!   The Best Powerlifting Routine for Beginners In the last three years, I’ve spent my fair share… Read More »

GreySkull LP Isn’t Good, It’s Great

As we move right along in the Powerlifting Program series, our analysis brings us to John Sheaffer’s Greyskull Linear progression program. I’ve purposely waited this long to talk about the Greyskull LP. Why? Well, in my opinion, the Greyskull LP, and the accompanying GreySkull LP book, is the single best general version of linear progression that is currently floating around the internet today. You can pick up a Kindle version… Read More »

Studying Sheiko’s Surprising Novice Routine

The response to the programming series thus far has been overwhelming. Before we get into our next review, I first want to address one key point. One of my primary goals with this series is not to just deliver judgment on what programs are “good” and what programs are “bad”. Rather, I want to demonstrate how, actually, most programs are “good” – it’s just that some are better.   If… Read More »

Candid Review of Candito’s Linear Program

Moving right along in the Powerlifting Programming series, we’re all set to review Jonnie Candito’s Linear Program. You can grab a copy of the program here.   If you haven’t checked out the foundational articles of this series yet, you’re going to want to do that now. You’ll need the context for the rest of the review.   Likewise, if you’ve been an avid follower of the series thus far,… Read More »

It’s A Bodybuilding Program: Jason Blaha’s 5×5 Review

Make sure you have checked out the foundational articles in this series. Many terms are going to be used in this article that are fully explained in detail in those pieces. Without that knowledge, you may be confused as to what I’m talking about in this review.   If you’re still confused as to whether or not YOU personally are a novice, please see my full review of Practical Programming… Read More »

Simply Sub-Optimal: Don’t Do StrongLifts 5×5 for Powerlifting

The response to the Powerlifting Programs series thus far has been phenomenal! I am stoked to see so many people asking intelligent questions regarding the science of programming. That said, if you’re a student of the game, and you’d like to take it upon yourself to amass further education on the topic, I highly recommend Practical Programming for Strength Training. In my opinion, this is the best introductory text current… Read More »

Starting Strength is NOT a Powerlifting Program!

In the previous articles of the Powerlifting Programs series, making particular use of Practical Programming’s concepts of the novice, intermediate, and advanced trainee, we laid down the necessary foundations to begin analyzing many of the popular programs that are currently floating around the internet. If you haven’t read the first three parts of this series, now would be a good time to do so.   The reality is that, at… Read More »

Periodization for Novice, Intermediate, and Advanced Lifters

In the last installment of the Powerlifting Programs series, we analyzed the critical training variables that must be manipulated properly in order to satisfy the core, foundational principles of all good powerlifting programming. Namely, we discussed intensity, volume, and frequency.   Our previous discussion analyzed these topics only in relation to each other. In this article, we’ll endeavor to put these concepts into the context of an actual powerlifting program.… Read More »

Undertraining vs. Overtraining: Intensity, Volume, and Frequency

In the first article of this programming series, we discussed the scientific principles that make up the foundation of any proper powerlifting program. We talked about: Specificity – you need to do heavy squats, benches, and deadlifts Overload – you need to do more than you’ve done before to make progress Fatigue Management – you have to properly time your workouts and your recovery periods Individual Differences – your training… Read More »

Powerlifting Programming: Specificity, Overload, Fatigue Management, Individual Differences

In all the time I’ve spent on the internet reading and talking about powerlifting, the one question I see asked more than any other is: “Is my program “good”?   Now, “my” program can be substituted for 5/3/1, Starting Strength, The Cube, Westside, Billy Bob’s 5×5, Ronnie Coleman’s 16 Week Bicep Blaster Routine, or virtually any other program that you can think of. Rather than repetitively giving the same answers… Read More »

The Shoes I Use: SABO Deadlift Shoe Review

After releasing the guide to Powerlifting Shoes, I’ve been flooded with questions about one pair of shoes in particular: The SABO Deadlift Shoe.   In this article, I’ll cover exactly what to expect when you order from Max Barbell, how to “convert” the European sizing to American sizing, the specifications of the shoe that make it so great and, of course, I will show the shoe up-close and personal.  … Read More »

Powerlifting Shoes

Lifters needlessly leave more pounds on the platform due to poor choices in footwear than any other easily correctable variable. Each and every lift has a different set of requirements for what constitutes optimal footwear. The best squat shoes, bench shoes, and deadlift shoes are different for every lift. For the quicker but less informative version of this article, watch this video: Squat Shoes It seems that almost no one… Read More »

Squat to Deadlift Carryover: A Statistical Analysis

In powerlifting, there is one number that is paramount above all others: The Total. One of the most important, and yet forgotten, aspects of technique selection for each movement is not only how it will affect that lift, but how it will affect your total.   For example, many people claim that benching with a big arch tires out their back for deadlifts. Others claim that using a wide stance… Read More »