10 Items for Serious Strongman Competitors
So, you have been lifting a while and now have an interest in strongman training. You go to a gym that doesn’t have any strongman training implements, but at least you are able to do the big lifts like press, squat, and deadlift with a barbell and squat rack. You are also able to hit your accessory lifts to improve any weaknesses you have using machines and dumbbells.
Barbells, dumbbells, and machines may help your strength increase with all your lifts, but keep in mind some strongman competitions require you to lift and carry odd-shaped heavy objects that may be difficult to mimic with barbells, dumbbells, and machines. It’s best to practice the way you play, which is why everyone who is serious about competing in strongman needs these items in no particular order.
Atlas stones are a huge event in strongman. With this, you won’t only be able to lift heavier weight up, but you can get used to wrapping your arms around a big round object and lifting it. Best part, you can adjust the weight.
You can’t mimic a clean and press for this event. You need a log, which will help you get used to cleaning and pressing it and help build your shoulder strength up, especially if you aren’t used to the angle your hands are in with this.
There are a couple events this could be used for, such as the axle deadlift and axle bar clean and press. Yes, there are fat grips that can be used on a normal barbell, but it’s not the same. This bar could help build a strong grip, too, which is important in strongman.
The best part with this item, as opposed to an actual stone, is that you can load the weight to what you can handle and build yourself up. It’s killer for conditioning training.
If you want recognition in strongman, you need to have an insane deadlift. Using this, you can attack your weakness from different levels and build up the speed of your deadlift helping your deadlift go up.
They’re great for linear resistance and building up speed in your lifts and go great with the PR Platform. Speed training helps build power, which makes your weight go up in your lifts. Plus some bands could be used for stretching, which shouldn’t be overlooked.
Yes, these farmer’s carries could be mimicked in a gym with dumbbells; however, the handles in competition are longer (like these Farmer’s Walk Handles), which makes it tougher to stabilize. If you can’t stabilize the handles, you’re pretty much screwed. It’s a great conditioning exercise.
You need a harness to practice the truck pull or car or whatever your event will have you pull. It also has to be strong enough to hold, or your training may not go as planned.
It’s a huge dumbbell with a thicker handle than what you’ll likely ever encounter at a gym. With this, you’ll learn how to stabilize and lift it in competition.
This could help you prepare not only for yoke walks, but the Conan Wheel Walks adjusting the bar so you lift and carry the wheel with the bar in the crooks of your arms. You could also perform waiter walks with these improving your shoulder stability and strength. These are all killer conditioning exercises. Another big factor is that it’s safer than using a barbell, as you don’t have to worry about the distance the bar could fall. I’d rather drop a weight a few inches than a few feet. The yoke is my favorite out of the 10, as you can perform more exercises with this.
These would all be important if you’re looking to compete in strongman, as these are the implements used in competitions. You will be able to improve your form working with these implements over time making them a safer and better competitor. These items will help prepare you better for competition, but don’t ditch the stuff listed before that all gyms have, as they may help strengthen weaknesses you have for events you have difficulty with.
Kyle Wodynski has been a certified personal trainer for 13 years and has a degree in exercise science. He lives in New Jersey with his wife and three sons. Eodynski enjoys training and competing in powerlifting and strongman and helping others achieve their goals.