The periodization of workouts has a multitude of benefits. It is an extremely effective means of increasing strength, avoiding training plateaus and preventing over-training. So what is periodization exactly?
Well, it is basically an organized approach to training which involves progressive cycling of various aspects of a training program during a specific period of time with the overall goal to increase strength.Types of periodization for Strength:


Strength Training Strategy # 1: Linear periodization

Linear periodization, which was developed in the 1950s by Russian physiologist Leo Matveyev, is the earliest and most common form of periodization. The training method involves a steady progression from high-volume, low-relative load to a low-volume, high-relative load as you work through your training program.

Another type of linear periodization would be to progress from a low-volume, high-relative load to a high-volume, low-relative load as you work through your program. This reversal is known quite simply as reverse linear periodization.


When it comes to linear periodization, the main two components which are commonly manipulated are load and volume, however, other variables like frequency, rest periods and exercise selection can also be manipulated.

Simple Definition: Linear periodization involves sequential alteration of key training variables over time.


Examples:


Load and Volume – Linear Periodization


Exercise – Bench Press (Sets and Rest remain constant)

  • Week 1 – 80kgs, 12 reps
  • Week 2 – 90kgs, 10 reps
  • Week 3 – 100kgs, 8 reps
  • Week 4 – 110kgs, 6 reps
  • Week 5 – 120kgs, 4 – failure

Load and Volume – Reverse Linear Periodization



Exercise – Bench Press (Sets and Rest remain constant)

  • Week 1 – 120kgs, 4 – failure
  • Week 2 – 110kgs, 6 reps
  • Week 3 – 100kgs, 8 reps
  • Week 4 – 90kgs, 10 reps
  • Week 5 – 80kgs, 12 reps

Volume & Rest – Linear Periodization


Exercise – Bench Press (Sets and Weight remain constant)

  • Week 1 – 12 reps, 60 secs rest
  • Week 2 – 10 reps, 45 secs rest
  • Week 3 – 8 reps, 30 secs rest
  • Week 4 – 6 reps, 15 secs rest
  • Week 5 – 4 – failure

Strength Training Strategy #2: Non-linear periodization

Non-linear periodization includes training methods known as undulating and conjugate periodization. These are designed with less sequential change in training variables than linear periodization over the training cycle. Non-linear workouts are prescribed with training variables which are altered across a number of workouts over short periods.


This can be from week-to-week over several weeks or from day-to-day over a single week. Again, volume and load are the most common components to be manipulated, but there is no reason why exercises can’t also be changed up.

Simple Definition: Non-linear periodization involves altering training variables from day-to-day or from week-to-week such that all training variables are used similarly within short periods of time.


Strength Training Strategy #3: Undulating periodization:

Movements trained multiple times per week with different training methods and movement.


Example:

  • Mon –Exercises for Power (4 sets x 6 reps)
  • Wed – Exercises for Strength (3 sets x 8-10 reps)
  • Fri – Exercises for Hypertrophy (3 sets x12-15 reps)

Movements trained once weekly with different training method


Example:

  • Mon – Total Body Power; Lower Body Strength; Upper Body Hypertrophy
  • Wed –Lower Body Power; Upper Body Strength; Total Body Hypertrophy
  • Fri –Upper Body Power; Total Body Strength; Lower Body Hypertrophy

Strength Training Strategy #4: Conjugated periodization:

Fitness Qualities are addressed simultaneously and equally throughout the training cycle with emphasis on one quality at a time throughout the training cycle



Example:

  • Mon – DE Lower Body (8×2 w/60%)
  • Tues – DE Upper Body (8×3 w/50%)
  • Thurs – ME Lower Body (Work up to 1-3RM)
  • Fri – ME Upper Body (Work Up to 1-3RM)

Strength Training Strategy #5: Block periodization

Block periodization , which was proposed by Russian researcher Professor Yuri Verkoshansky, involves cycles of sequential training each designed with a specific purpose. Each block is designed to be the foundation for the following one.


For example, you would train for muscle hypertrophy in one block and then move on to strength training in the second block and then maximal power training in the third block. You would therefore progress from a high-volume, low-relative load to a low volume, high-relative load.

While this does sound somewhat similar to linear periodization, the premise behind block training is to focus on a goal during a training cycle of a few weeks or even months rather than just sets and reps.


Simple Definition: Block periodization involves training for a specific goal in successive, additive cycles.


Example:

  • Week 1-6: Hypertrophy
  • Week 7-10: Strength
  • Week 11-14: Maximal Power



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