Home   |   Contact   |   Help

Get Our Newsletter
Sign up for our free newsletter to get training tips and stay up to date on Catalyst Athletics, and get a FREE issue of the Performance Menu journal.

Go Back   Catalyst Athletics Forums > Training > Fitness, Strength & CrossFit

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-09-2009, 12:22 AM   #1
Donald Lee
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 646
Default Unilateral Training and Bilateral Strength Deficit

I know unilateral training from from articles on T-Nation have been discussed on this board. I thought this might be of interest:

Quote:
Donald,

Yes, but one must also be careful how he implements unilateral
training and for what cases.

Naturally, a untrained organism presents a bilateral strength
deficit . which averages somewhere at 5-10%, but in some cases it
appears it can be very significant (up to 25%).

This can be changed with prolonged bi-lateral training. The organsim
become bilaterally facilitated, phenomena which can be seen in
weightlifters for examples.

Also, affirmations like "compete on one leg, train on one leg" used
by functionalists are pretty much false. It appears that patterns for
muscular activation are much more similar to the ones in running, for
example, during squat, and not single leg squat (IIRC, this comes from
Charlie Francis, he was quoting a study of Donald Chu)

Implications are multifaceted:

1. In a normal person, unilateral training can yield increase muscle
activation (due to the ability to bear more (normalized) load than in
the bilateral movement), hence yield stronger training effects.

2. On the same time on must recognize that neurally, it is extremely
important to train accordingly to the type of activation present in
the sport. Due to the phenomena of bilateral deficit, it is unwise to
accentuate unilateral movements in sports where we have a bilateral
activation. It is very important to gap the deficit, and even become
bilaterally facilitated. This cant be done with unilateral training.

Same holds true in cases where unilateral activation is greatly
involved in sport. Excessively using exercises which involves
bilateral activation may lead to bilateral facilitation in time,
meaning you will express more strength in bilateral movement than in
the unilateral movement (again normalized). You dont want that.

3. Recognize that some exercises may have improper neural recruitment
strategies , with respect to your competitive exercise. This, may
cause problems and possibly raise the probability of injury during
sport practice.

Just something to keep in mind

Dan Partelly
Oradea, romania
Donald Lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 05:27 AM   #2
Steven Low
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,091
Default

So basically... train with sports specific skills/movements. Gee, who woulda thunk it.

It is pretty important to recognize that unilateral and bilateral movement is important especially in the amount of drills specific to how much movement in each of those planes is required though.
__________________
Posts NOT intended as professional medical, training or nutrition advice.
Site // Bodyweight Strength Training Article // Overcoming Gravity Bodyweight Book
Steven Low is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 09:00 AM   #3
Garrett Smith
Senior Member
 
Garrett Smith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 4,368
Default

I think a little bit of unilateral training goes a long way.

It shouldn't be thrown out, and it shouldn't be all that one does.

The improved balance from some unilateral work would be pretty hard to get from all bilateral work, IMO. This work doesn't have to be weighted necessarily.
__________________
Garrett Smith NMD CSCS BS, aka "Dr. G"
RepairRecoverRestore.com - Blood, Saliva, and Stool Testing
My radio show - The Path to Strength and Health
Garrett Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 01:49 PM   #4
Donald Lee
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 646
Default

I thought this point was intriguining:

Quote:
1. In a normal person, unilateral training can yield increase muscle
activation (due to the ability to bear more (normalized) load than in
the bilateral movement), hence yield stronger training effects.
The only time I did much unilateral training for strength development was a couple years back when I was following Ross Enamait's program laid out in Infinite Intensity. I'm not sure if my results were greater than or comparable to that which I could have had from a barbell.
Donald Lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 02:08 PM   #5
Garrett Smith
Senior Member
 
Garrett Smith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 4,368
Default

One way I'd think of it in terms of usefulness is the transferability.

If someone (trained) can do a one-armed BB snatch, can they (untrained) do a regular BB snatch? What about vice versa? The pull-up or push-up used as an example here would be painfully obvious. Pistols vs. air squats are another one--anyone who can do a pistol can probably do quality air squats, while being good at air squats does not imply anything about being competent at pistols.

My guess is, due to things like balance requirements (assuming equal strength levels), that unilateral would transfer to bilateral better than the other way around.
__________________
Garrett Smith NMD CSCS BS, aka "Dr. G"
RepairRecoverRestore.com - Blood, Saliva, and Stool Testing
My radio show - The Path to Strength and Health
Garrett Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 02:22 PM   #6
Donald Lee
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 646
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett Smith View Post
One way I'd think of it in terms of usefulness is the transferability.

If someone (trained) can do a one-armed BB snatch, can they (untrained) do a regular BB snatch? What about vice versa? The pull-up or push-up used as an example here would be painfully obvious. Pistols vs. air squats are another one--anyone who can do a pistol can probably do quality air squats, while being good at air squats does not imply anything about being competent at pistols.

My guess is, due to things like balance requirements (assuming equal strength levels), that unilateral would transfer to bilateral better than the other way around.
I agree with that assessment. For a couple months, I've been working on one arm chinups, and last week I did some weighted chinups again. The unilateral training did transfer quite well to the bilateral training.
Donald Lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2009, 05:51 PM   #7
Steven Low
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,091
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald Lee View Post
I agree with that assessment. For a couple months, I've been working on one arm chinups, and last week I did some weighted chinups again. The unilateral training did transfer quite well to the bilateral training.
Defintely agree with that assessment.
__________________
Posts NOT intended as professional medical, training or nutrition advice.
Site // Bodyweight Strength Training Article // Overcoming Gravity Bodyweight Book
Steven Low is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:55 PM.

Powered by vBulletin Version 3.6.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Subscribe to our Newsletter


Receive emails with training tips, news updates, events info, sale notifications and more.
ASK GREG

Submit your question to be answered by Greg Everett in the Performance Menu or on the website

Submit Your Question
WEIGHTLIFTING TEAM

Catalyst Athletics is a USA Weightlifting team of competitive Olympic-style weightlifters with multiple national team medals.

Read More
Olympic Weightlifting Book
Catalyst Athletics
Contact Us
About
Help
Newsletter
Products & Services
Gym
Store
Seminars
Weightlifting Team
Performance Menu
Magazine Home
Subscriber Login
Issues
Articles
Workouts
About the Program
Workout Archives
Exercise Demos
Text Only
Instructional Content
Exercise Demos
Video Gallery
Free Articles
Free Recipes
Resources
Recommended Books & DVDs
Olympic Weightlifting Guide
Discussion Forum
Weight Conversion Calculator