Q: For us home-gym rats, how can we incorporate Positions-of-Flexion mass training with a very basic setup? I only have a barbell, rack (for squats/bench, etc.), and a dip/chin station; I don’t have any dumbbells. Is it possible?
A: It’s very difficult to do full POF routines for most bodyparts without dumbbells because most finishing contracted-position exercises are single-joint moves, like laterals for delts or bent-arm bent-over laterals for midback. Nevertheless, you can improvise and create some very effective NEAR-full-range bodypart programs.
Quads: Squats (midrange); Sissy Squats (stretch); old-style Hack Squats—heels elevated and bar behind your butt, with a quad flex at the top lockout spot (contracted)
Hamstrings: Stiff-Legged Deadlifts (midrange & stretch); for contracted-position work, you would need someone to give you resistance on leg curls with a towel around your ankles or rig an elastic band to a stationary post to hook your feet into so you can lie on a bench and do leg curls
Delts: Military Presses (midrange); Close-Grip Upright Rows (stretch); Wide-Grip Upright Rows (contracted)
Chest: Decline Bench Presses (midrange); Wide-Grip Dips (stretch); Low-Incline Close-Grip Bench Presses (contracted)
Lats: Chins (midrange); Pullovers (stretch); Undergrip rows (contracted)
Midback: Bent-Over Rows (midrange & contracted); One-Arm T-bar Rows—one end of bar in corner, bar between your legs (stretch)
Triceps: Close-Grip Bench Presses (midrange); Overhead Extensions (stretch); Dips or Bench Dips—pictured below, but use a plate on your lap instead of a dumbbell (contracted)—flex your triceps at the top of each rep
Biceps: Curls (midrange); Barbell Concentration Curls or Spider Curls—that is, preacher curls on the vertical side of bench—(contracted); stretch position isn’t possible, as Incline DB Curls is the exercise; also add Reverse Curls for brachialis work and more unique biceps targeting
You may get more ideas after reading the POF analysis of each muscle group in the 3D Muscle Building e-book. That’s the current POF mass-building manual that also includes many complete workouts. It’s a great place to go if you want to grow.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
NO MORE SHOULDER PAIN
Shoulder pain can affect your workouts forever. That’s not good!
That’s why we’re recommending advice from injury specialist Rick Kaselj, MS. His tips can help make your shoulders nearly bullet-proof.
Here are a few general tips from Rick (he goes into more detail in his program)…
Top 5 Tips To Bullet-Proof Your Shoulders
- Build Tension in Your Lats. When doing shoulder exercises, activate your lats and keep your shoulders happy.
- Prime Up Your Muscles. Most people do a warm-up that just lubricates the joint, but you need to activate and turn on all the muscles in your upper body.
- Technique, Technique, Technique. This is the number one reason why people injure their shoulders. You can’t go to the gym every day and work on your max lift.
- Watch Out for Fatigue. Cooking your smaller muscles in your shoulder complex, and that increases the risk of shoulder injury and pain.
- Work on Your Shoulder Blade Muscles. Many strength coaches will say you’re wasting your time on this, but if you want to have bullet-proof shoulders, you need to work on them.
Get all of Rick’s tips and tricks for pain-free workouts below: