Power Partials are another extremely effective training tool
for building muscle and gaining strength. It’s also another
training tool, like single rep training, or the 20 rep squat
routine, that you rarely see used. Why is that? Because,
despite the effectiveness of power partials in building muscle,
they require a lot of hard work. Brutally hard. And most
people don’t want to pay that price. But if you’re willing to
work this routine, it will work for you.
In order to train effectively with power partials, you’ll need
access to a power rack. Hopefully, your gym will have one. If
you work out at home, I highly recommend you purchase a power
rack. It will last a lifetime and allow you to do almost any
free weight exercise without the need for a spotter.
There are many ways you can incorporate power partials into
your weight training routine. Let’s take a look at three
variations of this technique.
1) Perform power partials at the end of your full range set.
Let’s use the bench press as an example. Perform your normal
set to failure and then continue the set by cranking out two
or three partials at the top of your range of motion. For
exercises like squats, bench press, and the seated press, you
need to perform these in a power rack. Partials are quite
easy to perform in safety on exercises like the lat pulldown.
2) Perform a set of heavy partials after your full range set.
We’ll use squats as the example this time. Do a couple of sets
of 8 – 10 reps using your normal full range of motion. Then pile
on 30 to 40 percent more weight on the bar. After a few minutes
of rest, perofrm a set of top range partials, doing only the top
one third to one quarter of the movement.
3) Do a set of heavy partials before your full range sets. This
version allows you to use the most weight on your power partials.
This version can do a great job of building muscle and strength
at a fast rate. You’ll want to build up with a couple of weeks
of submaximum workouts. The reasoning is that by performing your
partials before your full range sets you’ll be using a lot more
weight than you are used to. You don’t want to risk injuring
tendons and ligaments by using such extremely heavy weights without
building up to them.
You can also progress by training with partials in all three ways,
in the order in which I’ve described them. This will give you
a natural progression from the least to the most intense and
the lightest to the heaviest weights.
You need to be cautious. Big weights can mean big results but
also big trouble if you don’t pay attention to safety and good
form. You can’t go from using 150 pounds on the bench press
one workout to using 250 pounds on the bench press the next workout.
You need to build up to these weights. Done properly, power partials
can be your ticket to bigger muscles and more strength.