Question Progression with S&S

Anders

Triple-Digit Post Count
Hi,

I am currently doing the simple and sinister program.

Up until recently I followed the standard way of progressing. That is I jumped for 24 to 32 in terms of the swing, which meant I was doing 32 kilos 8*10 and 2*10 24 kilo. (1-hand swing). The breaks between sets were often between 2-3 minutes.

The "problem" with this was that I felt quite tired after each session. I think this was due to the fact that I did ten reps. I noticed that the first 7-8 reps went fine, but then the 2-3 last reps the acid starting creeping up on me, and I felt less powerful. After reading about this on the forum I experimented with another rep range. I did 32 kilo 8*8 and 24 kilo 2*10. This was a completely different experience. I never felt tired. I took shorter breaks and still felt rested before the next set. Based on this I thought about continuing with this and progressing gradually by increasing the load by doing more and more sets with 9 reps, and then more and more sets with ten reps.

What do you think about progressing like this ?
 

Tim Randolph

Triple-Digit Post Count
Very interesting question. When you jumped from the 24 to the 32 did you only introduce two heavier sets every four weeks? I am in almost the same stage of S&S. I have been strict about the “glacial” progressions and I can tell it’s made a difference. The 32 was a big shock one-handed but the total stress of that was manageable bc of the limited load of it. After 9 weeks, I am now swinging it for six sets and just now feel my strength has really caught up.

Two other points- if the problem is primarily with your grip, Pavel addresses that in the book with the split set option. Also if you are not doing the 2H swing sessions, I do those every second or third session. They lower the intensity over a training week and help with recovery.

Your approach of cutting reps isn’t bad, but I would make sure you have done everything according to the program before you start changing the program.
 

Anders

Triple-Digit Post Count
Hi. Yes I progressed according to his plan, and just as you said. One month on each stage and then two more sets with the heavier kettlebell for one new month. I do as you say with the 2-hand swing every second or third day. I do not feel that the grip is the problem. I feel the problem is the endurance of my hamstrings.

I have to add that I am a quite bad sleeper (4-6 hours pr. night). I am working on this problem now.

**
The interesting thing is that I feel that it is really always a problem with the two-three last reps. Even when swinging the 24 kilo I still feel that after 7 reps I get more tired and less powerful. At the same time I also realize that these last reps can make a little difference in terms of hypertrophy.
 

Tim Randolph

Triple-Digit Post Count
Yes I progressed according to his plan, and just as you said.
Given that I would personally go for the split sets. Say 7 reps, shake it off for a brief recovery (10-30 seconds), and then 3 more reps. I am not qualified to talk about the pluses and minuses of just cutting the reps. Since this is a high volume program I would start with tweaks that maintain the volume.

And keep working on the sleep. That may be the limiting factor.
 

Bauer

> 1k Posts
The interesting thing is that I feel that it is really always a problem with the two-three last reps
In Q&D Pavel mentions that CP depletion and acid buildup is a very individual thing. It could just be that you are one those people that need less time or reps to feel the burn. Once acid builds up it will cut into your endurance. (Conversely, I have heard that Biathlon athelete Fillon-Maillet can go very hard without building up lactate and has a genetic advantage there). I have often experienced the same as you and then either done 10x8 or 12x8.
 

Anders

Triple-Digit Post Count
In Q&D Pavel mentions that CP depletion and acid buildup is a very individual thing. It could just be that you are one those people that need less time or reps to feel the burn. Once acid builds up it will cut into your endurance. (Conversely, I have heard that Biathlon athelete Fillon-Maillet can go very hard without building up lactate and has a genetic advantage there). I have often experienced the same as you and then either done 10x8 or 12x8.
When I read this I started thinking that maybe this quick build-up where due to us having a higher percentage of fast-twitch muscles.
 

Anna C

> 6k Posts
Elite Certified Instructor
As an n=1 support for doing smaller rep sets, I did many weeks of A+A swing protocols where I was doing sets of 5 swings 1H with 32kg. Very, very few sessions did I ever do a full 10 swings in a set with 32kg. But after putting together that solid base with a bit of glycolytic peaking for the TSC in 2016, I was able to do Sinister, 10x10 swings with 32kg in 5 minutes.

So based on my own experience I would say the overall swing volume and the power you develop through the practice matters far more for end results (developing the adaptations you want) than getting 10 reps in each set.

But yes, as @Bauer mentions and is explained in Q&D, we're all a little different that way.
 

Mark Limbaga

> 2k Posts
Elite Certified Instructor
interestingly enough, I'm following a strategy wherein reps vary from day to day but the work:rest ratios are consistent.

in roughly 6 weeks I have managed to work up to a one arm swing with the 40kg for 10 reps on the minute for 10 minutes..

so definitely many ways to approach working up to the timed standards
 

Oscar

> 1k Posts
The interesting thing is that I feel that it is really always a problem with the two-three last reps. Even when swinging the 24 kilo I still feel that after 7 reps I get more tired and less powerful. At the same time I also realize that these last reps can make a little difference in terms of hypertrophy.
+1 to @Anna C comments.

I had great results with sets of 5, 6, 7 and 8 reps. I too felt power dropping from the 7th or 8th rep onwards, and many here in the forum have reported the same.

I think that progressing from sets of 5 is a good way to go. First you develop strength and power with sets of 5, and then you learn to endure that strength and power when you work your way up to sets of 10.

Additionally, in my experience, needing 3 minutes of rest between swing sets is a bit too long in the context of S&S. If you like to take 3 minutes of rest, that's fine. But if you need 3 minutes of rest, then the set was too hard to do 10x10 every single day. Keep in mind that such hard set and long rests imply a 35 minute long session of hard swings, every single day.

Regarding volume, I've had good results both ways: keeping volume at 100, for instance 20x5, or reducing total volume, like 10x7 or 8x8. In the context of daily training, I'm more inclined to the latter. If the bell is that heavy that you need to reduce the reps to 5, then doing 20x5 every day is too much. Reducing total volume if the bell is too heavy worked better for daily recovery for me. Even more so in your case that you are having trouble sleeping.
 
Last edited:

Nacho

Triple-Digit Post Count
Juts a thought based on my own experience. How many sessions do you have per week? With that little sleep and already 8 sets with 32 and just 2 with 24, you might need to reduce the frequency just a bit... ? To me the 32kg is a weird one. I can swing it powerfully for 10 reps and I get ups feel ”just right”, but while I could do 5-6 sessions a week with a 28kg, it has turned out to be a bit too much once 32kg joined the game.
 

Anders

Triple-Digit Post Count
Thanks for all the answers.

Sleep: I think the lack of sleep us hurting my progression, but I am not sure to what extent. I meditate regularly (a form of transcendental meditation), and I think this can to a certain extent compensate for the lack of sleep I experience.

**
I think it is also important to address the psychological part of training. The need for "fun", the need for variation and the need for results. These three needs have to be balanced.
 

Pavel Macek

> 3k Posts
Master Certified Instructor
a) Split the sets in two subsets.
b) Sleep more. Shoot for 8 hours+ - and not just because of S&S, but 101 other reasons. Very, very important.
 

Anders

Triple-Digit Post Count
I know there are a lot of benefits for more sleep, but I have large difficulties staying asleep. I have had the problem for aroundt 10 years.
 
Top Bottom