Accessory work is just body building and strengthening of specific muscles that aren’t going to tax the body quite as much as a heavy clean, bench press, deadlifts, jerks, push press, muscle ups, pull-ups and squats in other words movements that utilize the entire body for a specify movements.
When working the entire entire body on deadlifts, squats heavy on a regular basis, eventually we will find weak points in your technique, such as rounding the back too soon in the deadlift or not having strong enough legs to stand up with a heavy clean or not having the core strength to stay on finishing the pull on a deadlift or staying tight at the bottom of a clean. When our form breaks down because a specific area of the body can’t not hold up against the heavier working sets. So we therm turn to a body type workout to strengthen the weaker parts of our bodies.
Example bench press can be used as an accessory movement for strengthen the shoulders for weight as well as dumbbell strict overhead presses or lateral raise which can bring up shoulder strength in the bench press or add overhead stability in a snatch or jerk. Adding strength with accessory movements will also prevent injury by adding size and durability to the weak areas. By isolating the weaker muscles you can use lighter weights and add in more reps in a controlled manner which allows blood to build up in the muscle. This can also be called hypertrophy training which is using the 3 to 6 sets of 8 to 15 reps as a parameter to stimulate time under tension and causes tiny micro tears in the muscles. When the muscles are given proper nutrition and rest they can then grow back bigger and stronger. Bodybuilding is a sport which is about size, muscularity and definition. When doing cross fit or weightlifting there are fundamental moments that will always be the cornerstone and worked on daily. These movements are what I mentioned about above. The big compound movements such as a snatch, clean and jerk, back squat, front squats, muscle ups, pull -ups and hand stand push ups. These are just a few of the many movements that use accessory work to develop the strength needed to put together more reps and sets of the bigger movements.
Here is my top favorite accessory movements that I incorporate into my personal training program and unitize with my clients:
- Romanian dead lifts-strengthens gluts,hamstrings,lower back
- Supported bent rows-lats and upper back
- KB incline press with bands-chest,shoulders,abs
- Ring rows-strengthen lats,upper back
- Over head walking lunges-hamstrings,quads,shoulders,abs
- plank position band pulls with 1 arm-shoulders,biceps, lats, abs, glutes,hamstrings
- DB overhead strict press-shoulders,mobility
- Buellers-rotational strength in lunge position
- Farmers carry-grip strength/core strength
- Glute hambridges- glutes,hamstrings, abs
- Oblique med ball throws-core strength