Try These Lifts and Find Out
Beyond the Big Three
Most strength training programs emphasize the “big three” – the bench press, deadlift, and squat. After all, big numbers on the barbell means big strength, right? Well, not as much as you’d think.
Sure, the big three are effective, but there’s more to strength than what you can do with a barbell. Focusing on these three lifts means you’ll get good at these three lifts… but not much more. That’s the principle of specificity. You may also get major asymmetries and a loss of strength and athleticism in other areas.
Think about your fitness goals. Do they go beyond simply being good at bench pressing, deadlifting, and squatting? Or is your goal to have a jacked chest and be able to use it powerfully in multiple capacities?
Most people who focus solely on the big three aren’t really even using the strength they’re building in everyday settings. And if all that heavy barbell strength isn’t serving you in ways outside of moving the bar up and down in the exact same manner, then what’s the point?
About the Author
Ryan Taylor is the owner and founder of Training by Taylor LLC (www.trainingbyt.com). He achieved his bachelor’s degrees in both Kinesiology and Human Nutrition from Kansas State University. He is also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and a Certified Personal Trainer through the American Council on Exercise (ACE).