ROP support group

Mark Limbaga

Level 7 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
I didn't do it this way but a few years ago Dan John went back through the ROP. He used a 36 but on the medium day I believe he said he used a 32. Sounds like it could be a good idea.
Another approach that @Pavel Macek shared with a protege of mine..

For high volume day for example, use the 32 go (1,2,3,4,5)x3

For light to medium day, use the 36 go (1,2,3)x5
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
I don't bother with heavy day of the ROP anymore from the pressing perspective. 75 reps each side for a 51 year old man is a recipe for an injury waiting to happen. ...

It's a great program, but as you get older you need to tweak it. For those who say, that's not the ROP, tough, I ran it all the up to a 36. Once i got to a 32, and ran for 3 months, I start getting nicked up. I'm 195 lb. middle aged male, not some mutant.
In the last week, the total volume of C&P is 155 reps, done in 3 days. I was wondering if the result would be the same, but with the following split:
- 6 days
- roughly 26 reps a day
I may be the Rite of Passage's biggest fan and I feel the need to comment on both the above.

First, @pet',

I think the ROP is best thought of as being based on the good', old-fashioned idea of one really hard day per week. It has more in common with programs that do each lift only once per week than it does with something like S&S. That "one really hard day per week" in the ROP's case is made hard with volume, not weight, but the concept is very much the same, IMO.

The volume in the ROP's final week is unsustainable by most mortals, so I don't think it's a good idea to just divide it up. The consequence would be needing to use a lighter weight, but then you're doing another program. There really isn't any changing the heavy day in the ROP, in my opinion, unless you change to a heavier weight but still keep a substantial volume of lifts and, again, then it's not the ROP. Part of why the heavy day in the ROP works, IMO, is because "to press a lot, you have to press a lot."

@BrianCF,

The ROP is a press peaking program - it will get you to a better press, but it's much too much volume to sustain and one should change to another program when one feels the goal, e.g., a 1/2 bw 1-arm press on both side for a single, has been achieved.

I weigh 68 kg, about 150 lbs., and I'm currently doing a version of the ROP I've done before, which is two passes through, the first with 20 kg and the second with 24 kg. For the 20 kg pass, I go much more quickly than the 13 weeks the program takes "by the book". I am, as mentioned here before, using a heavier weight for some of my singles and doubles as I feel I can, so I know already I can press a 24 kg for a single, and I expect to be able to press a 28 kg for a single when I'm done the 20 kg current cycle. And I expect to be able to press a 32 kg when I'm done the 24 kg cycle, and then I'll be done with high volume pressing for a long time. And I'm 65 years old, and I'm no "mutant," just an ex-runner with a crappy bench press, a crappy squat, and a decent deadlift for an old, skinny guy.

75 reps each side for a 51-year-old man isn't a recipe for any kind of bad thing, but it's a thing to be worked up to no more than once every 3 months because that's how long the program takes, and after you've gotten your 1/2 bw press or achieved whatever else you want to from it, put it away. I believe this is my 3rd time through the ROP over the past 10 years, and that seems about right to me.

NB: I don't handle my ballistics as prescribed in the ROP but I still do them, but along A+A/S&S/Q&D lines, and on ROP heavy day, I do nothing but a short warmup, all those presses, and take a nap. I work on the weekends but have Monday's off, so Monday is my ROP heavy day.

Timing - I have been using a very simple formula to make sure I get enough rest between rungs and between ladders. Here it is:

00:00 - 1 rep L/R
01:00 - 2 reps L/R
03:00 - 3 reps L/R

and you rest as many minutes as were in your last rung at a minimum, more if you need. So if I'm doing ladders to 3, the next ladder would start at 06:00, 07:00, or 08:00, depending on how I felt. Applying the formula to ladders to 4

00:00 - 1 rep L/R
01:00 - 2 reps L/R
03:00 - 3 reps L/R
06:00 - 4 reps L/R

rest until at least 10:00. I just did 5 x 1-2-3-4, so each ladder started on the 10 minutes. The week before, my ladders to 4 started on the 12 minutes because I needed more rest

When I do ladder to 5 it will be

00:00 - 1 rep L/R
01:00 - 2 reps L/R
03:00 - 3 reps L/R
06:00 - 4 reps L/R
10:00 - 5 reps L/R

and start the next ladder at 15:00 or longer if need be

A session of 5 x 1-2-3-4 takes 44 minutes. A session of 5 x 1-2-3-4-5 takes 1 hour and 15 minutes

Rest periods explained - formula is: your next start time is your previous start time plus the number of minutes equal to the rep count you just did.

00:00 - 1 rep L/R
add 1 min to 00:00 and start next rung at 01:00

01:00 - 2 reps L/R
add 2 min to 01:00 and start next rung at 03:00

03:00 - 3 reps L/R
add 3 min to 03:00 and start next rung at 06:00

06:00 - 4 reps L/R
add 4 min to 06:00 and start next run at 10:00

10:00 - 5 reps L/R
add 5 min to 10:00 and start next ladder no sooner than 15:00

The above formula for determining rest periods is something I consider middle-of-the-road, not a new ladder every half hour, but also enough rest to allow you to feel well-rested before attempting the next set.

I hope this is helpful to someone's practice of the ROP. If you have questions, please don't hesitate to ask.

-S-
 

23rdwave

Level 6 Valued Member
When between bell sizes on the ROP I like to GTG kb ladders 1-3 + pull ups before moving up to a heavier bell. I can increase the volume without increased time for recovery between days.
 

rinkymehra

First Post
I am restarting it after being away from it awhile. Doing well using the 20K. I follow it very rigidly and use variety days using a wheel barrow and doing Airborne Lunges.
 

SantaClause

Level 6 Valued Member
My experience with ROP: I set my goal to be able to clean and press 40kg bell and I started last July (2019) ROP with 24kg and it was very manageable but still somewhat challenging and in the end when the volume got high the fours and fives challenged me but never missed a rep; I did bodyweight chins and pullups with different grips for same amount of reps as the cleans and presses. The rungs of fours and fives I did bodyweight rows on rings. Before the cycle I got 4 shaky reps with 28kg left and 5 right. Before I have lifted 32kg for 1-2 shaky presses per hand. After this first cycle I got 32kg clean and press for 3 left, 4 right. I did some swings with 32kg but not each training day or even week.

Next I did ROP with 28kg bell using 32kg for singles, and later in the light days for military presses for each set (5x1,2,3 in the end). I did multiple grip chins with 10kg weight added via dipping belt. After that cycle I got 7 reps clean and presses both hands and did neutral grip chinup with 30kg weight added. I bought 40kg bell during this and did some swings with it.

After that I started cycle with 32kg bell and continued that for seven weeks (I got to 5x1,2,3,4 heavy day under my belt). For some days I did singles with 36kg bell which I bought early during this cycle. Because of this quarantine I wanted to do something different than very long training sessions and as I got the opportunity for the first time I switched to grease the groove program using 36kg bell. Chinese Food for Rapid Pressing Gains | StrongFirst

I did it for two and a half weeks going from 8 singles a day to 8x3 (military press). After that I did light day (5x1) and rest day and yesterday I tested and got 40kg clean and pressed for a single both sides. During this time I did 240 reps with 36, first half I did clean and presses every set, second half I did one clean followed by presses as I started feeling something in my lower back. Now I achieved my goal.

I can really say that ROP works as promised (at least the c & p portion as that I did) and it will make you strong. Now I want to do something else but I’m certain I’m going to return to it in the future. Today I started doing strongfirst pushup -program and with some swings and goblet squats and prepare for the Q & D for four weeks. That’s going to be my next long term program and I’m interested to see If I lose the ability to press heavy overhead or not.



I recommend ROP for the base for everyone who wants to press heavy kettlebells.



-Niko
 

Stefan Olsson

Level 6 Valued Member
Can you do RoP more than once per year? Or is the volume and peaking to much?

I can strict press the 16 around 8-10 times and Clean and press the 24 3 times. Since rogue 20 is out of stock right now. Would the 16 be to light for RoP?
 
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Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
@Stefan, I recently had a conversation with Pavel about the ROP and my comment that it's a peaking program. He disagreed, and says that if you take your time with it, there's no reason you can't do it repeatedly. And I defer to him - my opinion is based on my own experiences and I have a history of not tolerating high volume well, and the same goes for high intensity programs for me. I have, e.g., hit new personal bests in the deadlift at competitions after doing _no_ lifts at 90% or above in training.

I have done the ROP twice in a row but never more than that, and I'm in the middle of one of those now - I'm due for 20 kg x (4 x 1-2-3-4-5) + (1 x 1-2-3-4) today, and am planning to start again with 24 kg when I finishes this cycle and then take a week off.

You have a few choices, e.g., you could run the ROP as a hybrid of two weights: 24 kg x 1, 24 kg x 2, and the remaining three rungs with 16 kg but you could consider bumping up the volume, e.g., instead of rungs of 3-4-5, perhaps rungs of 4-5-6 or 4-6-8 or 3-5-7 or 3-5-8.

But better, IMHO, would be for you to put the ROP aside and look at some of the excellent pressing programs you'll find in our blogs here, e.g., there is one with "Chinese Food" in the title you could do with the 24 kg, there is Soju and Tuba (sp?), and I'm sure I'm forgetting others as well. (Great if anyone reading along could add links to these and other pressing programs to this thread.)

-S-
 

Stefan Olsson

Level 6 Valued Member
@Stefan, I recently had a conversation with Pavel about the ROP and my comment that it's a peaking program. He disagreed, and says that if you take your time with it, there's no reason you can't do it repeatedly. And I defer to him - my opinion is based on my own experiences and I have a history of not tolerating high volume well, and the same goes for high intensity programs for me. I have, e.g., hit new personal bests in the deadlift at competitions after doing _no_ lifts at 90% or above in training.

I have done the ROP twice in a row but never more than that, and I'm in the middle of one of those now - I'm due for 20 kg x (4 x 1-2-3-4-5) + (1 x 1-2-3-4) today, and am planning to start again with 24 kg when I finishes this cycle and then take a week off.

You have a few choices, e.g., you could run the ROP as a hybrid of two weights: 24 kg x 1, 24 kg x 2, and the remaining three rungs with 16 kg but you could consider bumping up the volume, e.g., instead of rungs of 3-4-5, perhaps rungs of 4-5-6 or 4-6-8 or 3-5-7 or 3-5-8.

But better, IMHO, would be for you to put the ROP aside and look at some of the excellent pressing programs you'll find in our blogs here, e.g., there is one with "Chinese Food" in the title you could do with the 24 kg, there is Soju and Tuba (sp?), and I'm sure I'm forgetting others as well. (Great if anyone reading along could add links to these and other pressing programs to this thread.)

-S-
Thank you for the clarification and your experience with RoP.

I think I'll take a look at Soju & Tuba and see if it get the reps up with my 24. After that, If I still feel that 24 is to heavy I'll buy a 20.
 

Dries S

Level 4 Valued Member
Thank you for the clarification and your experience with RoP.

I think I'll take a look at Soju & Tuba and see if it get the reps up with my 24. After that, If I still feel that 24 is to heavy I'll buy a 20.
Hi Stefan,

I ended Soju & Tuba last week with the same intention as you have, to up my reps so I could start the ROP.
I started with 3 reps with my 40 and last week I pressed that bell for 6 good reps each arm.
So for me it worked like a charm!

I'm positive it will work for you as well!

Rest as long as needed between sets until you feel ready and strong to get the next set.

Are you training for a 1/2 BW press?
 

Stefan Olsson

Level 6 Valued Member
Hi Stefan,

I ended Soju & Tuba last week with the same intention as you have, to up my reps so I could start the ROP.
I started with 3 reps with my 40 and last week I pressed that bell for 6 good reps each arm.
So for me it worked like a charm!

I'm positive it will work for you as well!

Rest as long as needed between sets until you feel ready and strong to get the next set.

Are you training for a 1/2 BW press?
With the 40?! Strong!

From 3 to 6 reps in 6 weeks in awesome progress. Will you do RoP with 40? Did you do strict presses or clean and press with S&T?

Right now I don't have a defined long term goal. Next on my horizon will be RoP with the 24. That coupled with pull-ups should serve my upper body well!
 

Dries S

Level 4 Valued Member
With the 40?! Strong!

From 3 to 6 reps in 6 weeks in awesome progress. Will you do RoP with 40? Did you do strict presses or clean and press with S&T?

Right now I don't have a defined long term goal. Next on my horizon will be RoP with the 24. That coupled with pull-ups should serve my upper body well!
Well, I do walk around at 225lbs so I guess my reps with the 40 are good, but nothing special at all, definitely a lot of room for improvement :)
My goal is to be able to do some sets of 5 (or more) with the 48kg, as that is the heaviest bell I have, but that's still under my half BW so I hope the multiple reps compensate for that :)

With the S&T I did just the strict presses (i.e. for sets of 3 presses, only one clean at the start).

Now I'm in my second week of the ROP with the 40 and I'm doing the pull ups along with an added 15kg on a belt.
For the swings and snatches I'm using 32kg though.

Some years ago I started with a 16kg kettlebell (at a BW of about 185lbs), worked up to a 24 and a 32. After the ROP with the 32 I did it again with double 32's.
The years after I experimented with some powerlifting and did a lot of jumping around between programs.
So now I'm back at ROP, which definitely delivered the most for me!

ROP with the 24kg along with pullups will sure serve you well!

I'm including some daily push ups in the morning as well and some pull up sets at BW on my variety day between the medium and light day.
Nothing too draining, just because I like them for some extra hypertrophy (push ups sets around 15-20 reps/set and pull ups 5 sets x 8 reps, working to 5 sets of 10).

Enjoy the S&T and RoP with your 24, those two will for sure deliver you some good strength and muscles!
 

Molson

Level 4 Valued Member
Thank you for the clarification and your experience with RoP.

I think I'll take a look at Soju & Tuba and see if it get the reps up with my 24. After that, If I still feel that 24 is to heavy I'll buy a 20.
There is also this program. I had not tried this myself. Interesting how it would play out.

 

davidresink

First Post
Such an interesting thread and so valuable learning about the experiences of different individuals.

I’m 82/83kg at 1.89cm. Decided beginning of the year to register for SFG2 In Johannesburg scheduled for 25 and 26 March. Could only press the 32, but estimated my 1RM to be 34.

Had not been training with much focus beforehand. Have not previously pressed for reps, my only experience in training movements more than once a week was in swings and snatches for SFG1, and definitely not experienced in 1RM efforts!

Given time constraints, I elected to go with S&T starting with the 32. I super-setted the MP with weighted pull-ups with the same KB although for singles. I average 2-3 sessions a week, every second or third day. Days in between were spent either with swings and snatches, rest or mobility.. 1/2BW MP being priority number one!

Half way through on the 32 I put up the 36. Finished the program on the 32 and picked up the 36. Was able to finish the program on my left (6 sets of 3 reps) but couldn’t get the 3 reps on my right.

SA was put in lockdown the week of SFG2 so it was postponed for a month . I anyway thought I’d test with the 40 on 25 March. Put it up with my left, failed with my right. Left was a bit messy, but okay. I was pleased.

Given the extension, I thought I’d start S&T again on the 36, hoping that going back to single reps would help cycle/wave the load and I’d come through the doubles and triples stronger on my right on April than in March.

Unfortunately it hasn’t worked out as well as I’d hoped..the 36 for me is just an all round heavy weight to strict press overhead, and I think the every second or third day pressing heavy is taking its toll .. I’m fatigued and feel plateaued. I’m especially not seeing the progress I want to on my right and I’m starting to not enjoy the training. (admittedly another contributing factor could be psychological in that the lockdown was extended once again and the SFG2 is now postponed until further notice).

All this is to say thought that I’m going to reprogram my training, and enter the ROP program for the MP. I want to build a solid and lasting foundation in the MP which I do think will be established through volume training. I think once that’s done, then relook at S&T or the 501 to shoot for the 1/2BW (or more!).

posting this so I have to come back and provide an updated.

cheers!
 

AlexGRX90

Level 5 Valued Member
Always good to read other people’s experience with a program. RoP was my introduction to KB training and served me well with a 20kg. At 24kg, I can get a solid 3 on my right, a wobbly 2 on the left. Looking at hitting S and T for a cycle to get my numbers up, before returning to RoP. I like the simplicity of it, and the frequency of just pressing a heavy kettlebell. Either you press it, or you don’t! Long term goal is 40kg
 

Slatersan

Level 5 Valued Member
Hi all,
I started ROP last week. I am limited to a 16 and 24 kg kettlebell for training right now. This program seemed like a perfect fit for me. I have been using the 24 kg for the ladders and swings. I use the 16 for the snatches. So far I am loving it. I am sure i will be having questions in the future as I progress.
 
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