Bear Complex: How to do it effectively
Bear complex is a form of barbell complex with a twist.
A barbell complex is a combination of 4-5 different exercises. You have to do 6-8 reps of each exercise one after the other, without resting.
Or it simply means, once you pick up the barbell it will not leave your hands until you have completed all the exercises.
Istvan Javorek is widely regarded as the pioneer of complexes. He used it to improve the Olympic lifts of his athletes.
Barbell complex is a high impact and time efficient way to train major muscle groups. This is an advanced circuit-type workout. It’s a great way to improve your muscular endurance and conditioning. Barbell complex can be made with any combination of exercises.
Here is an example of a barbell complex
Javorek’s Barbell Complex :
|1.||Barbell Upright Row||6reps|
|2.||Barbell High Pull Snatch||6reps|
|3.||Barbell Behind the Head Squat Push Press||6reps|
|4.||Barbell Behind the Head Good Morning||6reps|
|5.||Barbell Bent Over Row||6reps|
How Bear Complex differs from Barbell Complex
Bear complex is a series of power movements done one after the other.
Unlike a barbell complex where you will do 6 to 8 reps of one exercise before transitioning into the next exercise, in bear complex, you will be switching the movement with every rep.
Here you have to be more focused. And the continuous transitions of the bar from one movement to the next will demand a greater control and coordination. It also helps you to build up a greater level of strength, along with an increased fat burning effect.
It consists of 5 exercises in the following order
1. Power Clean
2. Front Squat
3. Push Press
4. Back Squat
5. Push Press
How to execute
In bear complex, you will do one rep of each exercise as shown in the above video.
1 Cycle = 1 Rep of each exercise done consecutively
1 Round = 7 Cycles
You have to perform 5 Rounds
Rest interval between each round will be 90 sec.
If you are a beginner and not used to doing such high intense power movements then you don’t have to do the complete 5 rounds of 7 cycles.
You will know your capacity after completing 2nd or 3rd round. If the third round was really fatiguing then don’t go for the next round. Because you might screw up the form and increase the chances of injuring yourself. To avoid any kind of injury, it is very important to perform the whole cycle in a proper and controlled manner.
Build your capacity gradually till you can perform all the rounds with complete control.
Points to remember
- The movements should be done with proper form.
- Stand up completely after the power clean before going into the front squat.
- When bringing the bar behind the neck always bend your knees to absorb the impact of the weight.
- Always bring the bar on your trapezius and not on the neck.
Choosing the right weight
Go for the weight which you can do comfortably with your weakest exercise in proper form and technique. Remember, you will be doing continuous 7 cycles with this weight before resting.
This is an advanced level workout. If you are not comfortable with any of the movements (say power clean or a front squat) then Bear complex is not the place to learn that. Practice all the movements separately till you get a good command on all the exercises before attempting the bear complex.