Accessory work: the importance of adding it to your main workout

If you’ve been going to the gym for a while and set your workouts out like an athlete then you’ll know what accessory work is. If you’ve heard of Westside Barbell then you’ll know what accessory work is. Personal trainers and strength and conditioning coaches know what it is and they also know what its used for.

What is accessory work?

Accessory work is the exercises that you do to compliment your workout as well as improve muscle imbalances and weakness you may have. The accessory work for one person is different to what it is for another. If you have a weaker left side of the upper back, then you’ll have single arm pulling movements set for your accessory work.

Why Do you do it?

Say if you wanted to improve your deadlift but there is a weak link in your posterior chain. For example the glutes aren’t firing or the lower back has one weak side. Then on your deadlift day you will add a number of different movement that complement the lift at the end of your main workout. Lots of people think that the pure 5×5 lifting sets are the best way to gain strength. Whereas if you added a some more accessory exercises towards the end you’ll increase your strength even more.

Who is it for?

Lots of people go to the gym and just do the main 5-6 lifts that you see or they might do a split of certain muscle groups. This will get you to a level but you’ll need to add more into the workout to see better results. change is the best way to improve on anything. If you’re willing to change then your body will be willing to do the same.

You need to start to look at your movements in a different light. Start filming the lifts you do or get a coach to see where you might be going wrong. Then you’ll be able to see what has t be added in for a specific purpose.

Last note:

If I was going to look at a client deadlift technique and I can see that the knees might be buckling. Then I’m going to add some small glute exercises in because I know if I strengthen the glutes I’m going to prevent the knee from buckling in. At NK Fitness the personal training clients are looked after in the areas that they might not know they needed.