Written by Calgary Barbell, this the 8 week version of the famous 16 Week program, which is widely regarded as one of the best intermediate powerlifting programs on the internet.
It is a 4/day a week program with tons of weekly progressions based on exercise variations, frequency, volume, specificity, tempo, RPE, 1RM, and a range of accessory exercises.
Calgary Barbell is a powerlifting coaching and content production team, focused on raising the standards across coaching.
Visit their website to learn about their coaching and programs (including Calgary Barbell app).
What is the Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program?
The Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program is a concise, yet potent, powerlifting routine crafted to bolster strength in the three major powerlifting movements: the squat, bench press, and deadlift. It's the brainchild of Bryce Krawczyk, a Canadian powerlifting competitor and the brains behind Calgary Barbell, whose training regimen has helped countless lifters achieve new personal bests and enhance their performance.
The program strikes a balance between volume-based hypertrophy training and strength work, facilitating both muscle growth and strength advancement. It employs a periodized model, meaning the volume, intensity, and type of training evolve as you progress.
Why Opt for the Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program?
Choosing a powerlifting program is a subjective decision based on personal goals, preferences, and current strength and fitness levels. So why should you consider the Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program? Here are a few compelling reasons:
1. Compact and Efficient: This 8-week program is perfect for those who are looking for an effective, shorter-term commitment, or for those preparing for a competition with limited time left.
2. Balanced Volume and Intensity: Like its 16-week counterpart, the 8-week program strikes a balance between volume (repetitions) and intensity (weight), which can lead to enhanced muscle development and strength increases.
3. Accessibility: The program is freely available online, providing a strong foundation for beginners and intermediates alike. For advanced lifters, it can be utilized as an adjustable template based on personal needs.
4. Adaptability: The program accommodates a degree of flexibility and customization, allowing you to tailor it to your specific needs and lifestyle.
How to Implement the Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program
Adhering to the Calgary Barbell 8 Week Program requires dedication, consistency, and a keen understanding of your limits. Here's a basic breakdown of how to navigate this powerlifting regimen:
1. The Split: This program follows a 4-day per week training split, typically with two lower body days (focused on squats and deadlifts) and two upper body days (focused on the bench press).
2. The Phases: Unlike the 16-week program, the 8-week program has two distinct phases: strength (weeks 1-5) and peaking (weeks 6-8). Each phase has a different intensity and focus to ensure continuous progression.
3. Exercise Selection: While centered around the three primary powerlifts, the program also integrates essential accessory exercises to encourage balanced development and prevent injuries. These accessory exercises can be adjusted to address your specific weak points.
4. Load and Volume: The program employs a progressive model, where you start with higher volume and lower intensity, gradually transitioning to lower volume and higher intensity as you approach the peaking phase.
5. Rest and Recovery: Sufficient rest is crucial to the success of this program. Strength gains are made during rest periods when muscles recover and adapt to training stress.
About Calgary Barbell
Calgary Barbell is a powerlifting coaching and content production team, focused on raising the standards across coaching and education in strength.
Visit their website to learn about their coaching, training programs (including Calgary Barbell app), and apparel.