Paul have you ever used bands or chains? I'm not asking to then say "don't talk shit', I'm curious because I never really heard of them until recently and I always wondered why people went nuts for them when people have been getting big and strong without them for centuries...
I used chains for a little while, but as I've written many many times before I don't think chains or bands are really worth a damn for most raw guys. Dan Green wrote about this in the latest Juggernaut entry and it pretty much echoed all the things I have written before. For a raw guy you want to train bottom position strength. Lots of paused work, lots of "harder" movements like front squats, high bar squats, deficit deads, incline and shoulder work. Chains I could see being more beneficial than bands because you could load the chains to all come off the floor at the sticking point, however I personally also don't believe in "weak point training" i.e. doing work in certain positions because you get stuck there. You get stuck there because well, you're not strong enough to generate momentum to move the weight past that point. I've never seen anyone bench less using a two board than off the chest, yet lots of guys do 2 board bench because they fail at that position. They will stop failing at that position when they can generate enough force off the bottom to make it through the strength curve.
I see no purpose honestly for using bands if you're a raw guy. None. But some like it. To each his own.
Addendum to this -
Dan wrote basically everything I have been writing for years. If you're raw, bands and chains are pretty much a waste of your time. If you want to be brutally strong raw, quads, back, lats, chest, and shoulders are where it's at, bodypart wise. Lifting wise, you need to build bottom position strength. To quote Dan in our convo "the bottom part is the hardest position to build so you might as well quit avoiding it". I still haven't figured out why I see so many raw lifters doing equipped lifters shit. Reverse banded this and banded that. Why? You need to work the BOTTOM of the fucking lift. Not make it easier.
I really blame the internet and bad information. For years, powerlifting articles and shit were suited and written for and by geared lifters. Yet you had all of these guys that did not train in gear, reading and spouting off geared lifting methodologies. Guess what? It didn't work. For the one or two guys it did, the other 99% of us were left spinning our fucking wheels wondering "why doesn't this bullshit work? I'm not strong!" It's the same reason you still hear guys talking about lats in benching. LATS IN BENCHING?!?! PULL THE BAR DOWN TO ME? WTF?!?!? The bar will fall right into you, why do I need to pull it into me? Ohhhh it's because that asswipe can't get 600 to touch his chest. Ahhhhh makes sense now.
Basically, this is all about using the right tool from the toolbox. You wanna get stronger?
Get strong off the bottom - If a movement is harder in the bottom USE THAT. The one movement that kind of differs here is the deadlift. I find that mid-shin pulls make the deadlift the hardest. Your mileage may vary in that regard, but if I pull something from mid-shin I can pull more from the floor. Stop worrying about shit like board presses, bands, chains, and reverse band non-sense.
Build your quads - this is for squatting and for speed off of the floor in the deadlift. So guess what? Do fucking leg press and front squats. I don't care what you read about not needing quads for powerlifting, that stuff is idiotic bullshit. This means getting off the box, and stop listening to people who tell you that box squatting is full of awesome. It is not. If you want a bigger squat and pull, quads will be a great friend to you.
Build your back - The deadlift is a back movement. The legs initiate the drive off of the floor, however from there your back does the brunt of the work. The lats, especially the lower lats fire hard from the bottom as well. So train your lats and rhomboids like your life depends on it.
Build your chest and shoulders - This shit about triceps for benching.....what? Shoulders and pecs dude. Even if you're close grip. Doing a shit ton of tricep work is for guys who bench with shirts that need lockout power. Most guys don't miss a bench at lockout. They miss it at the transition point. So guess what? Just get stronger.
Build everything else with your support work - Biceps, triceps, calves, hams, abs, etc all should be what you use your support work to build. You don't need to kill yourself here, unless those areas are REALLY that far behind. If that's the case, make them a priority for a while.
I been giving you guys a lot of solid nuggets lately. And by nuggets I don't mean shit in the toilet bowl.