My “Go-To” for Strength

I was having a conversation with a young lifter who is graduating from college in a few months, and the discussion turned to “if you had one exercise to improve strength, which one would you use?”

This can be a loaded question… trust me.

Ask 20 different strength professionals (strongmen, power-lifters, Oly lifters, bodybuilders, strength coaches, etc) and I would guess you would get at least 20 different answers. I know my answer is going to be different than most, but hey… I like to go against the grain here and there.

One thing most athletes, and our adult clients for that matter discover very quickly when working with me is I don’t focus on a Chest Day, or a Back Day or a Leg Day when developing workouts, rather I focus on movement patterns and format the workouts to comply with this. Now I would LOVE to take exclusive credit for this, but this is a process I learned from renown strength coach Dan John.

I had the pleasure of attending a workshop Dan spoke at a few years ago, and he breaks this down the five basic movements for human strength are:

1. Push
2. Pull
3. Hinge
4. Squat
5. Loaded Carry

However the movements, in order, that will have the most impact on athleticism are:

1. Loaded Carry
2. Squat
3. Hinge
4. Pull
5. Press

So my answer to this young strength coach was very simple, pick up something heavy, carry it a ways, turn around and bring it back, and repeat.

Easy right?

Give it a try and get back to me how easy it is!