Wave-like Loading: A Great Method to Achieve Maximal Strength

Wave-like loading was shown to me by Canadian National Weightlifiting Coach Pierre Roy who is undoubtedly one of the brightest men I have met in the field of strength development.
Wave-like Loading: A Great Method to Achieve Maximal Strength
Wave-like loading was shown to me by Canadian National Weightlifiting Coach Pierre Roy who is undoubtedly one of the brightest men I have met in the field of strength development.<br />It is based on the principal of post-tetanic facilitation, where one goes and excites the motor unit pool to facilitate of higher threshold motor units. A ramping system ...

It is based on the principal of post-tetanic facilitation, where one goes and excites the motor unit pool to facilitate of higher threshold motor units. A ramping system is used to progressively excite the nervous system.

A sample ramping system would look like this:

Set 1 – 3 reps @ 85 kg

Set 2 – 2 reps @ 90 kg

Set 3 – 1 reps @ 95 kg

After the completion of the first ramp, one starts over with 0.5 to 10 kg, depending on strength level. The process is repeated until one cannot complete the waves. The most gifted athletes will take 4 waves to get to their true max.

So the next wave may look like

Why do we wave-like loading?

Each set has two main effects : potentiating and recruiting. When the loads are picked properly, each wave creates potentation, thus strength performance, while minimizing fatigue.

It is critical that one performs the concentric range as explosively as possible. As you reach the top waves, you will be in a state of maximal CNS activation. The top single always make the following first set in the following wave feel lighter than if the single was not done beforehand. Essentially, each cycle feeds itself.

Athletes will find that the hardest wave is only the first one, and the succeeding ones are easier to perform.

The 3-2-1 wave loading: this one is superb for athletes seeking greater relative strength.

Sample for a 300 front squat

Wave no. 1

1. 3 reps @ 270 lbs

2. Rest 4 minutes

3. 2 reps @ 285 lbs

4. Rest 4 minutes

5. 1 rep @ 300 lbs

Wave no. 2

6. Rest 4 minutes

7. 3 reps @ 272,5 lbs

8. Rest 4 minutes

9. 2 reps @ 287,5 lbs

10. Rest 4 minutes

11. 1 rep @ 302,5 lbs (if successful, proceed to wave no. 3

Wave no. 3

12. Rest 4 minutes

13. 3 reps @ 275 lbs

14. Rest 4 minutes

15. 2 reps @ 290 lbs

16. Rest 4 minutes

17. 1 rep @ 305 lbs (if successful, proceed to wave no. 4)

Wave no. 4

18. Rest 4 minutes

19. 3 reps @ 277,5 lbs

20. Rest 4 minutes

21. 2 reps @ 292,5 lbs

22. Rest 4 minutes

23. 1 rep @ 307,5 lbs (if successful, proceed to wave no. 4)

Note

Most people will do 2 waves, maybe a third one on an exceptionnal day, but you will find that the athletes truly gifted for strength development will take 4 waves to reach their maximal load for the day.

The 7-5-3 wave loading: this one is suited for athletes in combative sports interested in moving a weight class but having gains in useful cross-section.

Sample for a 350 lbs incline press

Wave no. 1

1. 7 reps @ 280 lbs

2. Rest 4 minutes

3. 5 reps @ 295 lbs

4. Rest 4 minutes

5. 3 rep @ 315 lbs

Wave no. 2

6. Rest 4 minutes

7. 7 reps @ 282,5 lbs

8. Rest 4 minutes

9. 5 reps @ 297,5 lbs

10. Rest 4 minutes

11. 3 rep @ 317,5 lbs

Note

Regardless of the strength profile of the athlete, by experience, 2 waves suffice at this intensity zone.

If your training is in a rut, wave-like loading will help you smash through your previous records.

Enjoy the path,

Coach Charles R. Poliquin

Source: www.strengthsensei.com