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Using the Barbell Well

When designing the strength driven workout program for Foundation, we looked closely at the barbell. We love the barbell for strength work. In every true strength training program, the barbell is a staple with movements like the deadlift, bench press, back squat, and the strict press. The key here is that we love the barbell for strength work... NOT for conditioning work. You will never see a barbell in our MOVE or conditioning portion of a workout.


You will see a barbell a maximum of 2x per week on our BUILD days. The barbell is particularly beneficial for increased load or resistance that goes beyond that of a kettlebell or dumbbell. BUILD days have a relative intensity level of 90%, meaning we will go heavier on these days than any other day. That being said, the heavy lifting is reserved for the LIFT portion only. The barbell is only used alongside designed rest periods- it is not used for speed.

Why don't we use a barbell for conditioning? Barbell movements were not designed to be done as fast as possible for high reps while under fatigue. Barbell movements done fast often lead to breakdowns in technique. Flawed technique (even the smallest flaw) done repetitively can easily lead to injury. If you can’t control a weight through the entire portion even sitting the barbell back down then you should look at lowering the weight. Once you lower the weight, practice your technique and only add the weight back when you're capable of moving the weight like you own it. Own the weight, don't let the weight own you.

Longevity vs. Sport: We understand there are extreme sports that use the barbell for high reps, at full speed, while under fatigue. These are professional athletes who have a short professional life, just like NFL players. We strongly recommend you never go outside and ask your friends to tackle you at full speed just because.. We also strongly recommend you never use a barbell for high reps, at full speed, while under fatigue.

Be smart. Train well.

Download our app to try a week of our BUILD, POWER, and GRIND days for $7.

For questions about our program, please email

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