Throwing a “Changeup”

clean to squatEvery couple of weeks we take a training day and change things up a bit, departing from our normal strength and conditioning routine or cycle.  Our normal program, as I have mentioned and shared in a previous post, has four core lifts, Bench, Squat, Hang Clean and Push Press.  We lift four days a week, completing three of the lifts every day (at varying intensities) while omitting one.

We throw these  “changeups” at our athletes for several reasons.  Often we just want to add some variety or “test” them in some capacity to see how they handle it.  We also add some of these lifts to focus on, or improve on, a segment of a core lift.  Some “changeups” that we have done, or are getting ready to do:

  1. Hang Clean to Front Squat on our “Heavy” Squat day (Tuesday) using our normal Tuesday (“Light”) Clean weights (percentages). On these days we eliminate our “Heavy” Squat since we are getting a Squat workout in addition to our Clean Workout.  We actually had our athletes complete this workout last Tuesday and you can see a brief video of this by clicking on this link: Hang Clean to Front Squat. or clicking on the above picture.
  2. Front Squat instead of back Squat on our “Heavy” Squat day (Tuesday) using our “Light” (Friday) weights (percentages).  This helps our athletes work on proper depth (since they are not concerned about breaking on their “Heavy” day) and also helps them keep their shoulders back in correct Squat position.
  3. Power Clean (from the floor) instead of Hang Clean. We do this on “Heavy” Clean day (Friday) using our “Light” (Tuesday) weights (percentages).  We have found that this helps stress using the legs (instead of back) and correct form when we transition back to Hang Clean.
  4. Hang Snatch instead of Clean on our “Light” Clean day (Tuesday).  This Olympic lift is a great change up using light weights initially.
  5. Inclined Bench instead of regular (flat) Bench on our “Heavy” Bench day (Monday) using our “Light” (Wednesday) Bench weights (percentages).  This gives us a way to implement one of our key supplemental lifts into our core lift rotation.

On these days when we are substituting in a lift, replacing what is normally a “Heavy” day lift, our athletes will not “Break” (see this post regarding breaking) by increasing their one rep maxes.  This takes some pressure off of them, allowing them to completely focus on the technique of the lift we are throwing at them.

These “changeups” have been a good way for us to keep our workout fresh and allow our athletes to gain experience (and strength) with different lifts.

Tomorrow another recruiting post, discussing the first of the “Purple Cow” qualities that will help make You a remarkable, recruitable student-athlete!

Any questions, just comment or email… I WILL answer!

Jeff Floyd –

13 thoughts on “Throwing a “Changeup”

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