I just finished reading a really good book over the holidays called “Strong Enough?” by Mark Rippetoe, who is a renowned strength and conditioning coach and the owner of the Wichita Falls Athletic Club.
In the book, Coach Rippetoe covers basic barbell training and the importance of the slow lifts (the squat, the press, the deadlift and the bench press) in any effective strength training program. The book also covers the correct depth of the squat, the proper mechanics of the deadlift, training myths, and observations and changes Coach Rippetoe has seen in the fitness industry over the past 30 years.
I thought the book was really interesting and pretty easy to read. There’s a ton of useful training information and some great coaching tips that I've already started to implement into my own training as well as with my clients. Coach Rippetoe really drives home the importance of the inclusion of basic barbell training in any well rounded fitness program and it’s unparalleled effectiveness in increasing overall strength when performed and programmed properly.
This book has reaffirmed my belief in the benefits of the heavy lifts like the deadlift and the back squat and has inspired me to start a new strength training program this year. The program is called 5-3-1 by Jim Wendler and is built around 4 basic lifts: the squat, the press, the deadlift and bench press. More on that later...