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Coach Marco’s insight on body-part splits – or Bro Splits??

I get approached often by clients or friends with questions regarding how they should organize their training session at the gym. Of course we know there is a massive amount of information on the internet – most is false. 

This article will break down a few of the common training splits and I will give you my insights on each. Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for advice on body-part split. 

Push, pull, legs 

At a client initial consultation, I usually would recommend hitting the gym at least three times a week. Personally, I feel like that is the minimum requirement to maintain and perhaps change your body. With this training split, three days a week at the gym is all you need for maximum gains. 

On our push days, we would mainly work on bench press, shoulder press, chest flys, lateral raises and triceps. As you can see, these muscles revolve around the front of our body. 

With a pulling day, we are working on pull-ups (or chin-ups), rows, reverse flys and biceps. Pulling requires us to use the muscles in our back. 

Last but definitely not least is our leg day. It is important to attack our legs from all angles from squats, deadlifts, jumping (for explosiveness), single-leg strength and calves. For a strong body, we must have strong roots. 

Upper and lower body 

With this split, it is highly recommended that you hit the gym at least four days in order to maximize the benefits of this split. 

As you may have guessed, each day you are training you are deciding whether to work on upper or lower body. With that choice, you must ensure that you target both push and pull. 

For example, with lower body you must push with squat and pull with legs. With the upper body you must pull-up and row as much as you bench press and shoulder press. SPECIAL NOTE: it is recommended that you pull twice as much as you pull. The reason for this is to improve and even correct posture (because no one wants to be a hunch back). Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for advice on this split. 

BRO splits – Chest, shoulders, back, legs, abs, arms 

This split often gets a bad rep because of the title. But before we make any judgements, lets go through the pros and cons. 

PROS: They hit every part of your body. Quality training is ensuring the body as a whole receives a proper amount of stress in order to maintain and grow. Proportion is key. 

CONS: Because this split hits every part of your body you need to be on top of your gym frequency. The moment you miss a training session, that part of the body does not receive its training until the next training rotation. 

It is perfectly fine to use this split. Actually, it is common for competitive bodybuilders to use because they are able to focus on that body part for the training session and sculpt it as they wish. But you must maintain the frequency at the gym in order to take full advantage of this split. Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for advice on this split. 

Coach Marco’s split recommendation for an function and athleticsm 

Day 1: Power development 

  • Power cleans and snatches
  • Sprints
  • Explosive throws

Day 2: Posterior-chain and postural development 

  • Deadlifts
  • Pull-ups and rows
  • Glute-ham raises 

Day 3: Core strength/stability and mobility work 

  • Pall-off presses
  • Ab wheels
  • General mobility work (does not mean static stretching) 

On day 1 of this split you will be working mainly on power development. Lifts and movements performed on this day must be done with maximum speed or the “intention” of maximum speed. Power cleans or medicine ball tosses will be your staple on these training days. However, you may also work your chest and shoulder presses on this day as well. 

On day 2 is where you develop your structural integrity. Here is where you improve posture, practice picking up heavy things and be stronger overall. Deadlifts and pull-ups are your stable here. Remember, form is everything. 

On day 3 is when mobility work happens. This is where you work on active range of motion. Move through the range of motion while keeping tension in the joint. In addition here is where you can work on core strength and mobility. 

Until next time, 

Coach Marco 

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