Tip: Set New PRs with the Small Loading Trick

Looks kinda weird, but it'll actually help you hit a new personal record. Check it out.

Tags ,

The idea of "small loading" was brought to my attention by Dr. Mel Siff, and it's a fine psychological mind game. It consists of loading the bar with small plates, and the more confusing the loading is the better.

Normally, if you wanted to load the bar to 225 pounds, most people would put two 45-pounders on each side. With the small loading method, you might put two 25-pound plates, two 10-pound plates, and three 5-pound plates per side, and not necessarily in that order (or even in the same order on both sides).

It works even better if you have a training partner loading the bar for you since it's harder to mentally calculate the weight.

This method removes the psychological intimidation factor that some people have. With "wheel increments," there's a psychological block that comes from the multiple 45's per side. For some reason, loading the bar with smaller plates is less intimidating and will put you in a more confident mindset.

Christian Thibaudeau specializes in building bodies that perform as well as they look. He is one of the most sought-after coaches by the world's top athletes and bodybuilders. Check out the Christian Thibaudeau Coaching Forum.