It is funny that this one off the cuff statement in the book should cause such concern. I would caution against dwelling on isolated statements but to try to wrap your mind around the concepts as a whole.
However, I can see how this would come to pass, given so many confusing and seemingly contradictory messages about strength training as opposed to hypertrophy training.
Well, the problem is that strength training is not "opposed" to hypertrophy training. Many people do not understand the message in the book. They think that I am saying that strength and hypertrophy are two diametrically opposed things. Read closer!
Hypertrophy, as I say in the book, is a side effect of consistent strength training. We do not separate out the two. At some point, in everybody's strength training, you will use all rep ranges. At some point you will have to gather volume, work under fatigue, and work on anaerobic endurance and work tolerance. All these things equal mass.
However, all these things do NOT equal bodybuilding. At least, not as we know it today. The practices involved in gaining your absolute largest amount of mass are not the same as the practices involved in training for pure strength. For bodybuilding, strength is only a side concern. All those bodypart splits that so-called "strength" experts are trying to condemn by telling bodybuilders that a full body routine will build more mass…propoganda designed to sell strength training to a bodybuilding audience. More mass requires more volume per muscle group.
What is the best way to build mass? Bodybuilding style training. Sorry, but it's true. There are trainees out their thinking they will get 18 inch guns or bigger by squatting! Like by some type of magical process. For most of us..to get big arms there will be some biceps curls and triceps extensions. That is bodybuilding. Strength training does not require it.
I do not talk about muscle fiber distribution. I do not talk about what RM's cause hypertrophy and what RM's cause strength because training is an integration of many different practices based on the trainees needs at any one time. And desires.
The message is NOT about what causes this or that, the message is about being clearly focused on your goals, as Ashiem has diligently pointed out several times in the last few days. A strength trainee focused on gaining absolute strength should not CARE what causes hypertrophy. He should only care about what he needs to gain strength. Do no divide your focus and goals.
We do not use singles, doubles, and triples because we are thinking, "today I am training for strength," and then use 6 or more reps on the next exercise because we are now training for mass. We are always training for strength. Absolute strength requires you to exert near maximal force as often as possible. Near maximal force means singles and so on. But that does not mean that every trainee needs to use near maximal rep ranges to gain strength.
If you want to be able to exert near maximal force as often as possible, you have to make your body fit to do so. That requires more than just low reps. So…you are not doing all that to be "fit" you are making yourself fit to lift heavy weights. Fitness is specific to a task.
This thread where someone posted an article about bodybuilding is typical of the belief system and propaganda at work today: http://www.gustrength.com/forum/t-210524/bodybuilding-has-lied-to-you
Here are some other posts that can help get across some of these philosophies and some of the other things I've been talking about lately:
Here is a newsletter related to "maxing out" and some strength training misconceptions plus a thread by Ashiem discussing that newsletter:
Here is another article that I think is one of the most important ones I have written
We've also had numerous similar discussions about these concepts in the forum but the search is not bringing them up. I have to look into that. Remember, I do not post these links to say "look at me." I post them because I would rather not have to type out the same things over and over again.
5x5 is middle ground for hypertrophy and strength therefore ineffective either ways.
That is not the only issue but okay…it isn't even the first issue but still okay…
Definitely. There are many things about 5x5's that make them inefficient for strength training or for bodybuilding. Given that, 5x5's are used as an example often because they are something that so many people are familiar with and have been led to believe are the definition of strength training. I use many other things as an examples as well, many of them familiar and common but nobody asks me about those. "Why do you dislike 5x5's" is the most common question we get asked by new members here. From the perspective of the "veterans" here, it's like talking about some old relic that sits in their garage because they can't sell the darned thing. They look at it once in a while and wonder how they ever got anywhere in the thing, having to stop every few miles to tweak the engine. Their friends say, "It's a classic!" and they reply, "Well, that doesn't pay for the gas it guzzles."