Simple & Sinister + Heart Rate Training

By Al Ciampa, SFG and Pavel Tsatsouline, CEO

In the Simple & Sinister Progression Tactics blog, you learned how to accelerate your Kettlebell Simple & Sinister progress by optimizing your training intensity with the talk test. But there is another, more accurate way to monitor your rest periods besides the talk test: heart rate (HR) training.

Your HR, or pulse, is a rough indication of your current level of stress, including the work that you are performing. If you “work to an HR,” you will provide a metric to the conditions that you can compare over time.

heart rate training with the kettlebell
Heart rate training can take Simple & Sinister to a new level.

Heart Rate Training as Applied to Simple & Sinister

First, you must find your target heart rate. There are many ways to do this, but the easiest and likely the most applicable to the population is “180-your age” by Dr. Phil Maffetone. In this case (swing intervals), you may add 5 BPM to your “180-age” result to get your target. Whatever your target HR, you must not exceed this during your session.

So, 180 – your age + 5 = target HR.

Next, you will notice that when you perform your swings, your HR will spike somewhere between 5-15 seconds after you complete your set, and may or may not linger around this value. This is the task: ensure that these spikes do not exceed your target HR.

This takes some practice. So, do a set of swings and observe the monitor. Do another set of swings, and again, observe the reading on the monitor. In a bit of time, you will get the feeling for what your starting HR must be – “the HR observed on the device before a set” – to ensure your HR does not exceed your target during the spike after the set. A few preparatory sessions will suffice for discovering the dynamics of your heart’s response to exercise.

The initial work sets of your session will require some time to elevate your HR. The heart’s rate lacks in response to work, initially. Do not interpret this as a free ride to do more swings until your HR spikes. You will regret it. Rest appropriately between sets for the initial few minutes of the session. Again, your own practice will teach you more than we can. As a personal experiment, take your swing session out to 20-30 minutes one day, in sets of 10, using the above instructions, and observe how your HR dynamics change.

The Importance of Tension in Heart Rate Training

There are many external factors that can affect your HR values: heat, humidity, hydration level, medications, illness, stress level, sleep, etc. However, the most important one within your control is the tension you use during your swings—its magnitude and timing.

High tension will spike the HR, but total tension at the lockout is non-negotiable—this is hardstyle. But this tension does not need to be maintained throughout the set, except in heavy double swings that are no longer ballistic; they are what Jeff O’Connor called “fast grinds.”

One can find moments of relative rest during the float and the backswing, which will lower the HR without compromising the swing’s power. After the kime, power your plank down. Keep just enough tension to maintain your structure and protect your spine. Just like a fighter who maintains a moderate brace between strikes, just in case, but maximizes it only on impact.

Cranking tension up and down in a blink of an eye is not an easy skill to acquire. Be patient. It might turn out that to keep your heart rate from exceeding the “180 minus age” ceiling after a set of 10 swings, you are forced to use a very light kettlebell.

If this is the case, use a favorite StrongFirst tactic of cutting the reps and upping the sets: instead of 10×10, do 20 sets of 5 reps. Peter Park, a strength and conditioning coach who has most of the elite he trains do Simple & Sinister-type swing sessions, comments:

In the swings I would expect their heart rates to stay below max aerobic even when doing 10 hard swings (some will be able to do more). In the beginning of the base building 5-ish is what most people can do. My goal is to get 10 hard swings on the min while staying aerobic. I put a HR monitor on and keep track. Not only do I like to see the max aerobic ceiling, but as the athletes get deeper into the base training, their heart rates drop incredibly fast, often to 90 or 80 at the end of the minute. I can often gauge when an athlete is ready for a break from racing or speed training when this swing test and other max aerobic tests start to decline.

You will have an easier time keeping your session aerobic while using a heavier weight. This format will subtly change the benefits—more power gains, a little less muscle hypertrophy, and a greater ability to quickly relax your muscles after contractions. When ready, move up to 14 sets of 7 reps (98 total), and eventually 10×10.

The Progression

Once you have spent a number of sessions locking down your technique, tension level, and starting HR, you will likely notice you are able to do more work under the same HR as time goes on. This is improvement.

Russian sports science differentiates training loads between “external” and “internal.” The former refers to doing so many reps, with so much weight, with this much power, this little rest, etc. The latter reflects the internal cost of the external load. In the type of training discussed in this blog, the HR reflects the internal load. If you can get through your 100 reps in less time without compromising the swing quality and at the same heart rate, then you have gotten in a better shape.

Some folks begin to see improvements right away; others will require more time. It is unlikely you will progress all the way to the “sinister” goal by following your HR in training. Occasionally, you will need to compress your rest periods and go glycolytic.

Al Ciampa
Al Ciampa has been a barbell athlete for 25+ years. A former powerlifter and bench press specialist, he has a raw bench press of 605lbs in training and 585lbs in competition, at the time, setting an IPA record. He served in the US Army first as a LRS-D team member, then as director of the Army’s hand-to-hand combat program in the South Korea: Modern Army Combatives Program.

After his service, Al co-opened and led training for a fitness and health and wellness center that served military units and the local public, where he specialized in strength and conditioning and nutrition. Feeling a desire to support the military again, he now works as an exercise physiologist and health educator for the US Air Force, specializing in rehabilitation, strength and conditioning, nutrition, and instructor development.

Al has an MS in sports and health science, is an SFG Level I, and is certified through the FMS, ACSM, and USAW. He has been recognized for excellence by the Secretary of Defense, Mr. Chuck Hagel.

59 thoughts on “Simple & Sinister + Heart Rate Training

  • I have a very basic question going back to the heading of the article itself, which is why is it better to stay “aerobic” and not go “glycycolic”. Is it simply by staying aerobic you can specifically train to increase your aerobic capacity while if you push yourself into all out effort and get into a lactic state – that you are not increasing your aerobic capacity. I am a bit confused about this. Also, is there any benefit of simply not paying attention to heart rate and just pushing yourself all out. When and where does metabolic conditioning or heart rate training make better sense?

  • About HR-formula: one should note that 180 – your age + 5 = target HR is just for average person. There can be a great deviation from maximum HR between individuals, for example my age is 34 and my maximum HR is about 175 (my maximum HR has always been rather slow), so to train aerobically my HR should be between 122…140BPM, not 151 like formula says.

    So the point is: one should test what is maximum HR and calculate zones in order tho train in aerobic zone.

    • No what Maffetone found was that 180 was not specific to individuals and therefore should not be ‘adapted’. It’s in many ways a meaningless number, what it does do is provide a highly accurate method of determining your aerobic max threshold. You should ignore the maths and just accept the result. It’s based on testing many individuals, the formula just allow you to hit the most accurate number for the general population without having to get tested in a lab. Also I would question the initial statement of randomly ‘adding 5’ to the formula. The only time Maffetone says this is worthwhile is for a highly trained endurance athlete with many years of base training and no illnesses or injuries.

  • Great addition to the “Simple to Sinister”.
    Just one question!
    What kind of Heart Rate Monitors are You, guys, using it and reccomending?
    Something simple and inexpensive? Maybe on Amazon and Ebay?
    Will appreciate any recomendations!
    Thank You

  • Ok, I ve had a question for a while now, and don’t see it covered in all the books, podcasts and articles I read from Pavel.

    I m a former tennis pro who coaches teenagers who aim to be Champions. I have realised that overtraining was a habit I had, I can deeply relate to the “no pain, no gain” philosophy (been there, done that, thanks for the crash, both physically and mentally). And I can see my improvements since I started to apply Pavel’s advices.

    I understand (I think!) the principles to build strength.
    I also read Phil Maffetone method’s book.

    The conclusion seems to be that training for strength is done in the phosphagen pathway, under 15 sec of work or sets of 5 or under.
    That training for endurance is better done under the HR 180-age.
    All of this is cool.

    Now the question: when is it appropriate then to go glycolityc in the training so that my athletes are ready for competition? And they are not burning out?

    It seems Pavel is advising to do 80% of your sport, 20% fitness training (including strength and endurance) (in Easy Strength).
    He shows an example with Maria Sharapova in Tim Ferriss ‘s book (The 4 Hour Body), doing 16 min fast walk and a limited number of strength exercises like the janda sit up.
    He takes example of Steve Baccari using his principles in boxing, apparently doing a small number of strength exercise, and then doing most of the conditioning matching the intensity of the fights doing boxing.

    Therefore, if I integrate all these elements I understand that the conditioning part I m doing it with my tennis players on the court hitting balls. That I need to match the intensity of a match. Ok, and how does it match the idea of NOT going glycolytic and NOT being smoked while keeping improving??

    Any reference that goes in line with Pavel’s principles and could guide me with my training system would be greatly appreciated.
    Or someone to talk to?

    Thanks for the great work. Really appreciate it.

    • Benoit,

      Think, “seasonal”… the greater answer, of course, is: it depends. But generally, use the off-season to build endurance and positive HR dynamics; use the pre-season to peak; and just try to maintain in-season. But again, this is couched in, it depends… is your athete getting sick often, is he/she recovering in between sessions, can he/she get to a state of calmness pre-game, etc?

      Email me for a more detailed discussion, if you wish.

      • Thanks Pavel. I appreciate.
        When you are saying “enough glycolytic work”, I’m assuming you mean that a combination of strength training and endurance training in addition to the work on the court (as stated with the examples above with Maria and Steve) are enough to get them able to hold the distance and keeping their intensity during the matches. Right?

  • Great article!
    Just did my first session, based on your protocol. I am 46 year old, recently certified as SFG instructor, doing S&S with 32 kg, 5-6 times a week, for last 4 weeks.
    For this session, I did one-arm-swings with 32kg, 20 (sum-of-both-arms) x 5 and my heart-rate was kept between 85-138 (one set it went to 140).
    Just wondering if formula “180-your age”, could be replaced with my actual max. HR of “191 -your age”?

    • Slavko,

      Our 180 – “your age” + 5 guideline, falls near to what you are asking. 145 might be too high a ceiling for you, but I have no way of knowing without working with you for a period of time. The proof is in the pudding: are you consistently improving your work capacity working to your current HR ceiling?

      How did you test for your max HR? When was this performed?

        • Slavko,

          I am curious… could you retest your max HR under similar conditions as the first? What is your training history up to Jan?


          • Al,
            I will try to re-test during this or next week and let you know. As for training history, I was training Aikido since 2010, for about 4-5 hours / wek and I am training with KBs, since 2014, when I started S&S using 24kg and I also did RoP in 2014.

          • Hi Al,
            finally got some time to re-do my HR max test and result was 188 bpm as my new max.

  • Great article!

    How high can/ should your heart rate get when you are going for the 100 swings in 5 minutes?

    • Dieke,

      Under testing/competition conditions, your HR is of no concern. Training is training; competing is competing.

  • Hi. Can you recommend any protocols/ sets to determine a “true” individual max hr for kettlebell workouts to get a personal #, or do you find the MAF calculation an adequate # to measure progress? Does final HR at the end of a SSST or Strong First comp work provide a more accuarate #? I’ve used to the MAF #’s in the past for running, and found that when swimming, doing running sprints, rowing, or cycling my max numbers varied.

    • Brandon,

      I’m not sure that I understand the question… different activites will stress the body in different ways, and so too, the heart.

  • Thank you Al and Pavel for a great series of articles and discussions. I know the idea is to stay mainly alactic/aerobic and infrequently dipping into gylcolysis, but if one had some secondary body composition goals would performing a short 5-10 minute glycolytic focused session such as KB complexes or sprint intervals on the same day but apart from the S&S session blunt or interfere with the aerobic adaptations?

      • Al,

        My question would be for fat loss and creating caloric deficit as well as hormonal responses that would support fat loss.

        • Robert,

          I am not a fan of using physcial training for the sole purpose of fat reduction. To support a nutrition intervention focused on fat loss, yes.

          That said, “it depends”. Is the person new to training? Generally healthy, or unhealthy (i.e. metabolic dysfunction)? Stressed out lifestyle? Carbohydrate tolerant? Undermuscled? Is this a 28-day “fat destruction” trial, or slower, sustainable approach (i.e., cutting for the beach, or losing 1lb or 2 per week)?

          Sorry for more questions than answers.

          • Al,

            I agree fully with the nutritional intervention aspect. I was mostly just asking out of curiousity, but I will use myself as an example.

            43 y.o., healthy and relatively fit; athletic background (mulitsport throughout high school, collegiate soccer, CF, olympic weightlifting); been following S&S for about 5 months now. Mesomorphic body type (5’6″, 180# at around 15% BF), but now with a bit of a spare tire around the midsection. I am no longer competing in anything so my primary goal is general health and fitness, and leaning out to about 10% BF would be a secondary goal. Diet is okay, working on cleaning it up. I know from past experience that I will lean out quickly by going low carb but feel lousy and performance drops significantly.

            Historically my training has been very alactic or glycolytic. I have always been the fast/strong guy that sucks at anything over a couple of minutes in duration.

            Currently I do my S&S sessions in the morning with a 24kg bell, starting to work in the 32kg for some sets, and have been using a HR monitor as a guide as discussed in the forums. I am definitely noticing the aerobic adaptations as my HR no longer spikes as high as it did initially and my recovery periods are getting shorter.

            I was considering adding in a short “metcon” session (KB complex, swings/snatches, wind sprints) in the afternoons to get that burst of high intensity for GH, IGF, etc stimulation that is purported to support fat loss, but don’t want to lose or interfere with the aerobic capacity gains I have been noticing with S&S.

            Thanks again for such a great discussion.

    • In that case, Robert, I did not answer your question: I don’t know exactly how much dosing of HIIT it takes to curb the aerobic benefit from training. It’s likely an individual thing, especially concerning training history and life’s stress level. I would include it, and monitor your progress.

      • Thank you Al. I will play with it and post results either here or on forum if anyone is interested.

        • I’m interested. Start a forum post or email me with your observations. The blog does not have an alert function.

          Thanks Robert!

    • Patrick,

      It depends upon the size of the jump, but once you are at or sub-10 swings on the minute, you can begin to work the next bell into your practice.

      • I am a little confused. My understanding from S & S is that the next size bell should be integrated only when one can perform easily 5×10 (both arms) in 5 minutes. Is this different when monitoring the heart rate?

  • Great article, I used this system and some MAF running under Al’s guidance to prepare for my first half-marathon. Let me state that although I’ve done some running over the years, due to back issues I had pretty much given up on it. For the swings I used the 32 and tried to average 40 min. sessions 3-4 times per week. So my week might look like a 40 min. session, a 60 min. session, and 20 or 30 min. session. I ran one long run per week working up slowly to an 85 min. run and the other run a 30 min. run. Here’s what I noticed, continual improvements with my HR during the swing sessions and even after the longer sessions I did not feel beat up. An increase in core stability and an increase in C&P strength. For the runs I never experienced any back or hip problems and even switched to a shoe which was a transitional shoe for going to a minimalist shoe. Most importantly I was able to reduce my pace from about 12 min/mi to abut 11 min/mi. The furthest I had ever ran prior was 8 miles but was able to complete the half without any issue and averaged a 10:32 pace. My legs and feet felt beat up after the half but I was very satisfied with the result. This stuff works!

    • Ian, it is not relevant. Grinds make poor aerobic exercise: mitochondrial adaptations are less pronounced than in quick lifts; the heart is not challenged in the same manner.

  • Thanks Pavel and Al. You may remember Al, from some forum discussions, that I’ve been amassing some hr data for the latter stages of S&S. I’ve hit the swing goal, well once, and still working on smoothing out the get ups before going for a few complete timed goals. I’ve used the MAF number for me and it is interesting that you advocate a +5 onto the number as the top end. In my very unscientific messing about I’ve found that when my hr was high, in terms of spikes during rests, it approached the +5 number, so earlier on in my tweaking I cut the reps and latterly adjusted the start point, or tweaked both. It pretty much ties in with your recommendations to fine tune ‘your’ number. In general the whole process has really helped me get a hold of the S&S process, moreover it has significantly helped with power development and the distinction of easy power to that of effort power, if there is such a distinction. I’ll post up all the hr data soonish, I hope! Again guys, thank you for this and the other heart rate piece. They’ve dotted the Is and crossed the Ts in my understanding. At least for the moment!

    • Alistair, it was Al who figured out how to modify the formula. Great to hear it is working for you.

  • I have been training 5-6 days a week for the past 10 years cycling. I started S&S this January and had the best year on the bike performance wise. I know from experience, age/heart rate calculators do not work myself. As a 40 year old the maximum heart rate I saw this year while training was 198, which is 18 above the 220 – your age max heart rate formula. What formula should I use or can I use 180 – age with a known + 18 offset giving me 158.

    • Clausen, the formula works for most, not all. You may need to test your MHR—with your physician’s approval.

  • Al, you mention the importance of context when it comes to getting students to a set of ten every minute while staying at a heart rate. Do you think that in most cases this is a better indicator that someone owns a bell than being able to do 10×10 in 5 minutes glycolitic? This question might be circular though: “it depends on the context” : P

    As a follow up, is it possible that dedicated steady state cardio training could actually get them to that aerobic goal faster than only doing S&S? Would it be better to trade out two sessions of S&S a week to do 30 minutes of Maf runnning?

    • jca,

      The term “owning a bell” is more associated with strength and motor control, not energy systems training.

      LSD, arguably, might not get you there faster, but the outcome may be more intense. However, you are now asking, “not S&S”, so to speak. Personally, I feel the combination of LSD and S&S is better than either alone. That said, you will likely still need to plug away the hours on the road (or bike), several times per week. I do not know what the “minimal effective dose” is here. I am still trying to figure that out.

  • Hey Al, great article.

    I’m 43 years old and started S&S in March after 15 years with minimal strength training. I’ve progressed to 10×10 swings with 40kg in under five mins in the last few weeks. My goal is to complete with 48kg within the year.

    As a general observation I’ve stuck with the S&S recommendation of taking 2-3 deep breaths between sets (i.e. focus on breathing and ignore the clock). For me this approach sees the HR peak at circa 150 in the early sets of the 10×10, rising towards 160-162 for the last couple of sets while completing the 100 swings in under five mins. If I stick to the “2-3 deep breath” rule the HR seems to be self regulating.

    Up to 32kg I focussed on finishing a 10×10 swing set within five minutes every day. Subsequently I only go for time once a week and do ladders on the other days, e.g. 2x(5,6,7,8,9,10,9,6) with 3-5 deep breaths between sets. Generally strength (grip, lats, glutes, core, etc) seems to be the main constraint and the ladders give steadier progress. 10x48kg oh/swings is complete fantasy for me at the moment, but a few sets of 3-4 is doable.

    I’ve also done a bit of training on the side to complete the 24×100 snatch test with a view to competing in the TSC next year. Even a few 15/15 sets of 24kg swings drives the heart rate much harder than the S&S swings, with the heart rate quickly going to 170+ and pegging. Snatches seem to work the heart just as hard as long hill repeats. For me at least, 100 snatches in 4:45 works the heart even harder than a 1500m time trail.

    My assumption was that this is why Pavel recommends just doing snatches once a week, but is cool with S&S swing sets every day.


    • Thanks, Danny… and I second the “great job”!

      Improved buffering and aerobic capacity might allow you to complete the snatch test at a lower HR, but it will definitely cause less uncomfortable sensations from your body.

  • Enlightening, especially as i experienced what Al has shown that Peter Park does in terms of less reps per set.

    In a comment in Pavel’s last blogpost, i wrote that i have experimenting with keeping to a 10min swing time limit due to having a high intensity lifestyle as a pro musician. I do swings on the minute from say 5 reps and then build up the reps, naturally compressing rest time with time as reps increases, during the remaining portion of the minute.

    My point here is quality is ESSENTIAL, I discovered earlier today as i upped my reps to 8 per set and really struggled to get that snap. My last session was 7 reps per set and the quality was there. Funny how an extra rep, a bit earlier than i should have thanks to my over abundant zeal, can lead you down the glycolitic pathway with a chance of injury by pushing past the point one is currently capable of.

    I’m going back to 7 reps next session. ..maybe even 5!

    • Rob,

      I know that we are discussing swings in the context of S&S, but 10 swings per set is not gospel. My goal for most of my students is to get them to 10 swings per set doing each set on the top of the minute (about 40sec rest) while at their aerobic HR. But for others, advancing them to the next bell before that time might be a better choice. Context.

      • Exactly. Thanks Al.
        Using the 36kg on the minute is tough stuff for me but well worth it.

        • Rob,

          Last year at this time, my HR peaked at 155-ish doing 10 x 10 OTM with the 40kg. Two weeks ago, the same session had me peaking at 139, and that was just after the last set. The meat of this later session had me in the high 120s-low 130s. My uncorrected MAF (as per Joe’s notation below) is 135.

          It takes a lot of time to see improvement in many cases… but time is going to pass anyway. Might as well make it productive…

  • Could you explain a little more about the relationship of HR to what energy system one is using? Can I infer from the article that less than 180-Age+5 is most likely(or mostly?) aerobic, and above is most likely (or mostly?) glycolytic?

    If this is the case where does Alactic fit in with HR? Maybe you tap out the alactic with enough tension regardless of HR? Then go Glycolytic or aerobic depending on HR?

    • The Maffetone Method is used to find your maximum aerobic heart rate. The idea is that you are training the entire time using your aerobic system (fat burning/oxidative) . From my experience and reading Maffetone’s work and listening to his podcasts 1-2 beats above this can take you out of the aerobic zone and into anaerobic (glycolysis). 180 – age will put you pretty close to your aerobic HR but HR is very individual so it may take some time to find. It may be worth exploring a MAF test once a month to see if you are making improvement.

      • Joe,

        Yes and no, here… when you get closer to YOUR lactate threshold, 1-2 BPM can be associated with huge increases in blood lactate, but not when you are well below it, which is one of the reasons (I assume) he settled on a low(er) HR for his formula. Your LT will move as you get fitter, so even the same HR will tell a different tale in the same person at different times in their training career. As your LT increases away from your MAF, you will simply use more fat and less sugar for the same work.

        HR is VERY individual.

        A MAF test will not be reliable unless the user is already competent (and actively training) in the activity that they are using for the test. E.g., if you are using the MAF for swings and are testing with a jog, but never jog, the forces applied to your untrained leg muscles will screw up your readings. If you already run, and run at least once per week, it will be a much more reliable test.

        This is one of the problems that confronted me with using MAF for swings: how do you test it outside of the activity that you are using it for? That is, how do you know it works?

        • On how do you know it works: Did you come up with a solution to this problem? I think what you are saying is that there is a gain in efficiency specific to the movement, and it is difficult to tease out from an change in the underlying improvement of the metabolism? It sounds like you’ve got at least two unknowns (the swing specific gain in efficiency/Neuro learning and the underlying adaptation of the metabolism.) so you need at least two measurements. If you test a range of movements on a spectrum of how close they are to the swing you may be able to tease out the specific piece as it drops way.

          A simpler solution might be to test it on peoples sport. If you don’t improve in the arena you care about, it doesn’t work there. This would of course require more data to understand where it carries over and where it doesn’t.

          • Exactly right, Travis… in fact, there is a 3rd unknown: unconcsiously toning down the tension on the swing to meet the HR value. The each swing has to be as Pavel described, but I have seen this phenomena take place. One should change reps and/or bell size to maintain HR, not mess with tension. Just FYI…

            The solution? You can do more swings in less time while remaining under your HR target. You will also see your HR dynamics improve. And yes, your chosen sport or activity “feels” easier.

    • Travis,

      The MAF formula was designed to capture a level of steady-state activity for most people, without individual testing. When you slowly ramp up your resting HR to a walk, then a slow jog, then a quicker jog, etc… to your MAF, and hold it there for the duration of the session, you are using fatty acids and glucose via the oxidative system (pyruvate and lactate will enter the Kreb’s cycle if the intensity is low enough). Its not mostly aerobic, it is all aerobic… however, it is mostly fatty acids when compared to sugars.

      When using power intervals (like swings), as opposed to steady-state, you are using the anaerobic system to power the work, and the aerobic system to replenish it (as best we understand it). The work interval is powered by the alactic system, then the glycolytic system… accelerating waste substrates into the bloodstream “faster than the aerobic system can buffer or use them”, which is reflected by HR increases.

      Over time, the aerobic system adapts and improves to buffer and use the waste substrates from the anaerobic system, as well as increasing in its own ability to power higher intensity work. This will cause your HR to increase to a much lower value after a set of swings, or to run faster at the same HR value (when applied to running). This adaptation will only take place to a large enough extent if you are recovering enough in between sets of swings, or, jogging slow enough in the case of running. This is why you will see gains across the board (aerobic & anaerobic) when a noob begins a HIIT program, and 6 months later, they are fighting illness, and even regressing in performance.

  • Great article by Al and Pavel.

    It’s important to note that when using the Maffetone Method there are additional questions asked to find your appropriate target heart rate. Regression or progress in your training is taken into consideration as well as illness. You add 5 beats only if you have done one of the following:

    If you have been training consistently (at least four times weekly) for up to two years without any of the problems just mentioned, keep the number (180–age) the same OR

    If you have been training for more than two years without any of the problems listed above, and have made progress in competition without injury, add 5.

    • You are correct, Joe. But for this application, it is ok (in most cases) to leave out the adjusters.

  • Thanks a lot Al and Pavel. Very good ‘practical’ article that I am going to benchmark along with the ‘Simple & Sinister Progression Tactics’ blog.

    • Try to check back for the comments as well… I have a feeling that they will further explain this protocol.

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