MOVE – Ladders Intro.

Ladders are another great programming tool for training functional movement. They allow us to elevate our reps during a workout (therefore increasing total work output) by avoiding fatigue/burn out.

The basic idea is this: pick 1-3 movements, depending on your focus, and start by doing 1 rep of each.  Rest for a second, then do 2 reps of each.  Keep increasing your reps by 1 each round until you can no longer complete the set.  Instead of ending the workout there, however, drop back down to 1 rep, and start building up again.  Below is a sample workout involving 2 movements:

  • Pull-ups:  (1-8, 1-7, 1-6, 1-5, 1-4, 1-3, 1-2, 1) = Total Reps: 120
  • HSPU [Handstand Push-ups]: (1-7, 1-6, 1-4, 1-3, 1-2, 1) = Total Reps: 69

Notice that I kept the Pull-ups and the Handstand Push-ups on different ladders. While I rotated between the two movements for as long as I could, once I was squeezed out on HSPU, I continued with pull-ups, allowing myself a longer break in between sets.

Using a wall to help with HSPU is a good way to do them more safely when you are just developing your technique.

*Looking for other workout programming tips?  Check out my posts on Tabata Intervals, AMRAP, and Periodization.

*Want workout suggestions?  Find them here.


Have you ever tried ladders?  If you have, what did you think?

-Stay healthy everybody.