Some advice on equalization

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cekoloazora
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Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Sat Mar 08, 2014 8:14 pm

Hello,

I'm a 21 year-old fencer currently on a break and I am looking to equalize my left and right side. I am 6'1 and weigh 173 lbs. However, I am having difficulty benching more than 110 lbs in a 6-8 rep set because of the imbalance caused by fencing and a weaker left wrist that I broke when I was a teen. I can deadlift 155 and squat 143 in a set but I can feel that my follow leg (left) is stronger. I'd be greatly appreciative of any suggestions.

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Stephen Johnson
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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by Stephen Johnson » Sat Mar 08, 2014 10:46 pm

@cekoloazora:

Do you have pain or less mobility in your left wrist?
Thanks TimD

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by Crow » Sun Mar 09, 2014 2:06 am

I see two possibilities (after checking your bench press technique and checking that your wrist is o. k. concerning the pain)...

Reduce weight with Barbell-Excercises, so much that your form is o. k. and progressing only slowly to strengthen the weaker side. (the stronger side has less work to do and won`t progress much)

The second possibility could be the use of dumbells (also only a weight your weaker side can work with good form, and not doing more with the stronger side) and/or using unilateral movements like (weighted) lunges in addition to squats.

But I believe it is normal that one has a stronger and a weaker side... and for more information it would be interesting to know which exercises you do (your workout). A programme like WS4SB for example uses more unilateral movements and could be an alternative, depending on your goals...

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by robertscott » Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:25 am

110lbs bench relative to a 155lb deadlift and 145lb squat is nothing to worry about. Your lifts are fairly balanced so don't obsess too much over your bench (we all did it though man, everyone wants to bench heavy). Getting stronger overall should be your main goal still.

As for your wrist, if it's really holding you back because of pain then you'll need to get it looked at by a professional. There's only so much an internet forum can do for you when it comes to actual medical diagnoses. If it's just a bit weak and that's holding you back, then your first port of call should be to get some wrist wraps. Those things are great and make a big difference. Spend a little money on a decent, thicker pair instead of just buying any old $h1t.

Strengthening the muscles around your wrist with reverse curls can work wonders for achey wrists when benching so start doing a few sets of those a couple of times a week. Stop if it hurts, obviously.

it's true everyone does have a weaker and stronger side, but the stronger you get overall the less stuff like that matters

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:04 am

Thanks you for your replies.

I have more mobility in my left wrist - it goes further back and causes discomfort when supporting a weight, possibly by straining the tendons so a wrap might work. Also, I have less grip strength.

Here's my programme:

Mon: 1 mile jog
3x8 Bench
3x8 Machine Fly
3x10 Dumbbell bench
3x10 Dumbbell Fly

Tues
4x10 Ez bar Curls
3x10 Preacher Curls
3x10 French Curls
3x10 Dumbbell Curls
3x8 Standing Dumbbell Triceps Extension
3x10 Concentration Curls
3x10 Tricep Rope pulldown

Wed:
Jog 1 mile
4x8to10 Squat
3x10 Calf raises
3x10machine Quad leg extension
3x8 Machine Glute extension

Thurs: Off

Friday: 3x10 Front pulldown wide (cable)
3x10 Front pulldown close undergrip
3x10 seated row (cable)
*edit missed 3x5 deadlift here
3x10 one arm dumbbell row, no rest

Sat: 1 Mile Jog
3x10 Front Raise
3x10 Lat Raise
3x10 Shoulder press
3x 3x alternating Front Lat shoulder
3x5 Behind neck press
3x10 Dumbbell shrugs

Sun:Off

What I'm looking to do now is lose love handles and get more strength, I won't be fencing again until September so I'll probably wanna switch to something more high intensity during June-July
Last edited by cekoloazora on Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:44 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by stuward » Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:21 am

The best way to increase wrist strength is to do exercises that require grip strength. Try adding farmers walks and deadlifts to your program.
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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by Crow » Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:45 am

cekoloazora wrote:...I have more mobility in my left wrist - it goes further back and causes discomfort when supporting a weight, possibly by straining the tendons so a wrap might work. Also, I have less grip strength. ...
Do i understand you right that your wrist isn`t straight, when holding the bar doing bench press? So the bar isn`t straight above your forearm?

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:27 pm

Crow wrote:
Do i understand you right that your wrist isn`t straight, when holding the bar doing bench press? So the bar isn`t straight above your forearm?
It might be that, I'll test tomorrow and report back.

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by robertscott » Sun Mar 09, 2014 2:38 pm

your arm routine is too much. Pick 3 exercises each for bi's and tri's, do 3 sets as supersets (so a set for bi's followed immediately by a set for tri's with no rest) per exercise pair and be done with it.

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:31 am

Just came back from gym. It seems heavier weight makes me twist my left wrist inwards and back. Had to consciously correct the form and now it feels no different than the right one, so that's good. Still, there is a notable disparity in the dumbbell bench, gotta keep working on that.

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by Jungledoc » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:48 am

Yeah, the bar should be directly over your forearm and elbow when you bench. The forearm should be very near vertical throughout the lift. Keeping the wrist from cocking back is partly forearm strength, and partly habit. Cut down on the weight until you can keep the bar in position consistently.

By the way, you're not using a thumbless (a.k.a. "suicide") grip, are you? If you admit to using it, you will be subjected to a veritable barrage of criticism, insult and anger. We hope you will say no.
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter.--Francis Chan

cekoloazora
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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:42 am

No, I do not, although when I first started lifting a friend told me I should use it. Still I thought it's called suicide grip for a reason.
About the bicep routine, is that good?
3x superset 10 preacher curls+ 10french curls
3x superset 10 alternating dumbbell curls+10dumbbel tricep extention
3x superset 10 concntration curls+10 tricep rope pulldown


Finally, on which day should I do the farmer's walks?

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by robertscott » Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:34 pm

cekoloazora wrote: 3x superset 10 preacher curls+ 10french curls
3x superset 10 alternating dumbbell curls+10dumbbel tricep extention
3x superset 10 concntration curls+10 tricep rope pulldown
yes that's much better, although you could consider doing hammer curls instead of the concentration curls. If you would prefer to do the concentration curls then that's fine but hammer curls would complement the other two curls nicely

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by cekoloazora » Fri Sep 05, 2014 1:45 pm

Hello again, just wanted to thank you all for your advice. I fixed my form and bought some wrist wraps and I am currently up to 165 lbs bench, 225 squat and 285 deadlift, no pain at all in the wrist as well. I am also up to 180 body weight but my body fat ‰ is down to 14 - 15. Will be starting on the in-season version of ws4sb soon, we'll see how it goes from there

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Re: Some advice on equalization

Post by hoosegow » Fri Sep 05, 2014 3:29 pm

nice progress
Thanks TimD.

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