There are three extremely useful lifts, which can help to build explosive strength – barbell dead lift, barbell bench press, and the barbell squat. To build muscle and strength, these three moves can build muscle mass all over.
Power lifters focus on one rep max during competitions. They win through a total combination of the weight lifted rather than reps performed with a heavy weight. With any weight training, the more weight that is lifted or squatted, the more muscle mass can be attained. Power lifting can also shorten a workout greatly.
All three exercises – bench press, dead lift, and squat – are compound lifts. They use several of the large muscle groups; stimulate muscular adaptations and the nervous system of the entire body. For both power lifters and those who want to gain significant muscle mass and strength, these three lifts require focus and should take top place on the agenda of strength gain.
The dead lift trains each of the muscles on the back of the body, plus the quads and abdominals. This exercise allows you to use the most weight to build explosive strength and muscle mass over the entire body. The feet should be shoulder width apart, slightly outward, and situated in the centre of the bar. Keep the back straight, bend forward, and down at the hip and knees. Grip the bar a couple of inches wider than the feet. Pull the weight up by pushing the hips forward and pulling it up to the shins. Lower it. That makes one rep. If you are in general good health, it is safe to perform dead lifts. Those starting out with weights, work on strengthening the back and core first. Work up to a heavier weight so as not to cause injury. Do not arch the back or round it when performing a dead lift – this could pose problems and cause a bad back.
The squat develops leg size and strength but is also one of the most difficult exercises to get right. It is important to get as low as possible with squats. The heavier the weight the more difficult it will be to sink down comfortably without causing problems or a strain on the back. The feel should be shoulder width apart, toes pointed out slightly. The barbell should not lie on the neck or directly on the shoulders, but the fleshy part of the shoulders. The heels should take the weight of the squat and the abdominals should be pulled in and remain reasonably upright, the lower back concave. It is important to try to squat down as far down as is comfortable. When the back starts to round, the squat is far too low. Try to get the thighs parallel with the floor. The feet should still be visible when the squat is as low as comfortably possible.
The bench press helps to build explosive arm power, strengthen the shoulders, and develops the pectoral muscles, but performed incorrectly, shoulder injuries may occur. The back should sink into the bench and the shoulders should be back, away from the ears. The grip should be around a couple of inches wider than shoulder width either side. The forearms should remain under the bar and the upper arms remain 45 degrees in line with the body. From the chest the bar is pressed up quickly again sustaining correct form. Focus on bringing the shoulder blades together with each rep. This helps to stabilise the trunk. Keep the feet on the floor at all times, it is important, stabilises the body, and prevents injury.