Advanced lifting techniques for beginners

Advanced lifting techniques for beginners

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut with beginner’s lifting moves. You can also become ruled by dubious movement patterns and too focussed on achieving your reps target.

While caution is always advised, moving onto some more advanced techniques can help alleviate these problems and improve your lifting. And you can start right now. 

Here are 3 techniques you can try, whatever your lifting experience:


Competitive bodybuilders regularly use paused reps on big lifts to tackle their weak points.

This technique is particularly suitable for beginners because it increases the safety of the movement. Using a weight you can control by stopping in the middle of a rep will test your strength and also avoids flailing the weight around and possibly injuring yourself.

An ideal move to use pauses on is the deadlift, which is a great move for anyone to try. Try pausing at mid-shin or knee level for a whole second. This increased time under tension will boost your muscle growth. It will also get easier each time you do it as your muscles develop memory of the form required in each position.


Forced, or eccentric reps, are when you focus on the eccentric (lowering) phase of a lift. You normally explode into the lifting (concentric) motion, then lower at a slower, controlled pace, usually around 4 seconds. This forces the muscles to work harder, for longer. It also taps into your strongest muscle fibres, stimulating them into growth.

A great move to put this into action is pull-ups. You have the option of completely skipping the concentric part, or simply putting more focus on the eccentric component.


Being a clever machine, the body will use a stronger muscle group to compensate for a weaker one. But this can be counterintuitive when you want to strengthen the weaker muscle group. So what we have to do is to attack those stronger muscle groups first so they don’t ‘take over’ a lift.

A common example of this is working the hamstrings and glutes (at the back of your thighs) before the quads (at the front), or working the triceps before biceps.

You can use all three of the techniques, or just one. The important thing is that you do some lifting! Be consistent, exercise regularly, add in other beginner gym exercises and you will soon see muscle growth and increased strength.


The Author

Kath Webb

Kath is a contributing writer for PayasUgym. Football, running, weight training, yoga and walking are her forte, along with cooking tasty, nutritious food - with a regular batch of cake chucked in.


Claire H.
13 September 2017

Claire H.

Wow - I did some paused reps with some weighs this morning after reading this article and it's a real change in feeling, but I liked it. Easy to remember as well.

Simon J.
12 September 2017

Simon J.

control control control ....very wise. It terrifies me when I see weights being flung about and 'that' close to going flying. It is scary enough for those of us also in the gym, the injury risk for the person concerned also doesn't bear thinking about.

Michael A.
11 September 2017

Michael A.

Great explanation of paused and forced reps. I am not a beginner but I didn't know some of this stuff.

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