Build a Body Like Dmitry Klokov

dmtry Klokov

Just look at that body! Not only is Dmitry Klokov an amazing Olympic weightlifter, but he also has an incredibly aesthetic physique.

In fact, Klokov recently took his physique to the next level, to which he actually competed in a bodybuilding contest!

The fans are going crazy, and are starting to realize that they too want a physique like Klokov.

Well, in this article I’ll break down everything you must know about building a body like Dmitry Klokov. I will examine his weak and strong points (muscle groups) and how that came to be through his style of training, in addition to a 4 week full body concurrent training program that should put all of this stuff together. (I usually make my programs 12 weeks, but if I did that for this program it would be like giving you a free product)

Also, I want you to realize that I will not be discussing how to be an Olympic Weightlifter like Klokov (you can read his book for that), but rather how to LOOK like Klokov. So keep in mind that the focus of building the Klokov physique has to do with the aesthetics portion, and not necessarily the strength/power points. Although you’ll still get pretty strong with this program.

For you non-readers, I made a video version of this article.

Short Background Check

Before we can start analyzing Klokov’s physique, we must first understand his background.

Dmitry Klokov was an elite level Olympic weightlifter. In competition, his best snatch was 193kg, with his best clean and jerk being 232kg. His best total was 428kg in 2008.

He’s also known for doing heavy-ass front squats on youtube (best 285kg), in addition to strong push presses and overhead presses. In fact, he is infamous for a famous exercise called The Klokov Press, which is really just an ultra wide behind the neck press. He does over 225lbs for reps in this exercise.

Klokov is also known to be a complete athlete, to which he can do everything good which is not related to Olympic weighlifting. He kicks ass in crossfit, powerlifting, swimming, and much more!

This is really a guy that’s developed a complete physique in all respects.

Analyzing Klokov’s Muscles

Since Klokov has been training in a certain style for decades, he has developed a very unique physique as a result.

I will now break down what visual muscles appear to be very strong, and which ones are smaller. This section is extremely important for understanding the 4 week program that you will get at the end.

Let’s discuss his upper body first, and then his legs.

Dmitry Klokov Chest

If you take a quick look at Klokov’s chest, you will immediately notice that his chest is generally not that big. HOWEVER, he has extremely thick upper pecs, and I must emphasize the word extremely.

This ends up giving Klokov an extremely masculine-looking chest, which is squared in shape but does not droop down at the lower pec area which typically causes that saggy man boob look.

Now, you may be wondering how his upper pecs can be so thick, while his lower pecs look extremely average. (no offense Klokov)

This occurs because Klokov was an elite level weightlifter who specialized in overhead pressing. I want to make that extremely clear before moving on.

“Klokov was an elite level weightlifter who specialized in overhead pressing.”

Why is this so significant? Well, it’s because his upper chest development has to do with overhead pressing biomechanics!

People don’t realize this, but overhead pressing actually works the upper chest to a great extent. In fact, when you do cable crossovers for the upper chest, do you not bring your hands up and high to flex them?

Just think about it. The upper pecs attach to the collar bones, which means that any form of proper overhead pressing will develop them like crazy.

As for his lower chest, it’s not that big because he rarely if ever does barbell/dumbbell bench presses (even though he can hit 405lbs for reps) or any form of weighted dips and chest isolation exercises. He has really stuck to his guns on overhead pressing.

With these facts in mind, it’s clear that anyone who wants a physique like Klokov must follow an overhead press specialty program. This means training with lots of vertical pushing variations, which can be anything from overhead presses to incline presses. Thus, there will be no flat benching, weighted dips, or chest isolation work in this program.

Dmitry Klokov Shoulders

klokov shoulders

Klokov’s shoulders are absolutely insane. He has fully capped delts that are proportional to the rest of his physique, with a perfect amount of mass to go with it.

He obviously has these shoulders due to years of Olympic Weightlifting.

I mean just use your common sense for a second. If you’re holding more than 400lbs over your head, do you honestly believe that your shoulders will be lagging? I’m yet to find anyone who would.

In Klokov’s case I’m not even sure that he does direct work for them, but they’re well developed because he is strong at holding weights over his head.

He’s strong at strict pressing, push pressing, and behind the neck presses (Klokov presses).

So Klokov has these great looking delts that look good from all angles, and coincidentally they happen to be strong? This should be telling you something about his physique, which points back to the importance of running an overhead press specialty program.

Vertical presses must be the foundation of all presses to acquire the shoulders of Klokov!

Dmitry Klokov Traps

klokov traps

Klokov’s traps are one of his best features. This large amount of trap development can be credited to nothing else but his Olympic weightlifting career.

By getting mad strong at front squatting, high pulls, deadlifts, snatches, and other lifts, his traps have hypertrophied as a direct side effect of strong performances.

In fact, if you take a hard look at Olympic weightlifters, you will find that 9/10 times they’ll have amazing traps development. It’s extremely rare that they don’t have thick traps, because everything they do in their sport heavily recruits the traps.

With that in mind, it’s no wonder why Klokov’s traps look like a bodybuilder’s.

By the way, here’s a fun fact. Did you know that oldschool bodybuilders used to do Olympic lifts? It’s funny, because they all had great traps. Learn from them.

So in this program, there will be a heavy emphasis on training the traps. You will perform several shrugging and pulling variations, which should leave you mimicking the Olympic weightlifter traps syndrome.

Luckily, you don’t have to be as strong as one to look one.

Dmitry Klokov Back

Here is where we start seeing the nuances of Klokov’s physique.

The most noticeable feature is that his lats are nothing great. He has very good traps and upper back development because they act as stabilizers in all the pulls he performs, but his lats can honestly be found in any local gym.

This makes sense, because olympic weightlifting is not a sport where you need to have the biggest lats ever. Plus, Klokov rarely does vertical or horizontal pulls (pullups and rows), nor would he necessarily need them.

It’s evident that he doesn’t that flared out bodybuilder look. He looks very narrow, to say the least.

You’ll want to keep this in mind when running the final program. The focus will be on upper back/rear delt work, with traps obviously taking main priority as previously discussed. There will be no lat specialization exercises, as this would make your physique too wide.

Dmitry Klokov Arms

Although Klokov’s arms look good, they aren’t exceptional like some of his other bodyparts. In fact, they look kind of disproportional to the rest of his physique. Just like his lats, you can find a pair of Klokov arms in most local gyms.

In particular, his biceps do not seem to peak that much or have an incredible amount of size. His triceps are decently sized, but aren’t completely meaty like a bodybuilder or powerlifter. This is probably because he does not do direct work for them such as various close grip presses, extensions and pushdowns, as they are not necessarily specific to an olympic weightlifter.

Plus, it’s been theorized that having arms too large can make it harder to clean. Therefore I suspect that this is why Klokov’s arms are not super huge. He just didn’t need big arms for his sport.

However, his forearms are absolutely phenomenal. They definitely overpower the rest of his arms, and are immediately noticeable upon first glance. Once more, this has to do with his Olympic weightlifting career. (bet you didn’t expect that)

If anyone has ever tried doing heavy double overhand pulls off the floor, you surely realize how much grip strength is required. And when you widen out your grip even more, aka a snatch grip, this makes it even harder to hold the bar! Even if you try using a hook grip, your forerams will still be doing lots of work to prevent that bar from slipping out of your hands.

So in this program, we will emulate what Klokov has been doing. There won’t be any direct biceps and triceps work, but there will be a focus on forearm strength.

Dmitry Klokov Midsection

If there’s one thing that really stands out on Klokov’s physique, it’s his incredibly thick midsection. Seriously, his midsection is so thick that it would never cut in a Men’s physique competition!

Realize, however, that his midsection development is NOT a result of doing lots of crunches. Those abs comes from years of doing heavy beltless compound movements. Basically, lots of front squats, high bar squats, different pulls, etc. For this reason, you’ll also be training these lifts in a beltless fashion.

In fact, if you watch some of Klokov’s training clips, you’ll notice that he is shirtless most of the time. Thus, he constantly using the valsalva maneuver, and demonstrating raw intra-abdonimal strength.

Moreover, his bodyfat percentage is not really the lowest. He falls within the 10-15% range, which means that to look like Klokov you don’t have to cut your bodyfat super low. What a relief!

Dmitry Klokov Legs

klokov legs

Klokov has some very aesthetic legs! They are perfect in overall size, and are built in all the right places.  They appear long, well defined, and proportional.

Unlike many bodybuilders and powerlifters who have excessive hamstring, adductor, outer quad, and glutes which typically result in turnip-shaped legs, Klokov’s legs are far from this. He has super-hero looking legs like Batman and Superman.

With Klokov’s legs, you see a thick pair of quads, great Vastus Medialis (the muscle above the knee, also known as VMO) in addition to diamond shaped calves.

Therefore, the final workout plan will be designed to strengthen and hypertrophy these precise regions of the legs. Developing the posterior chain will not be your main goal.

Final Discussion klokovprogram

Now that we have all the information we need, it’s time to compile everything together into a well-organized program.

The program will be executed in a full body concurrent training style, which means that you will be performing full body workouts 2-4x a week, while frequently rotating exercise selection.

We do this to prevent accommodation and build overall strength and hypertrophy. Plus, there’s a lot customization that goes into building the Klokov physique, so we must make sure that we attack this look in every possible way.

Anyhow, I now present to you a 4 week custom program that will give you the aesthetics of Dmitry Klokov. You obviously won’t look like him in 4 weeks, but if you keep repeating this program you should start seeing some noticeable results with time!

So without further ado, here’s the program.

PS: If this program helps you out, leave a comment down below!

WEEK 1

Standing Overhead Press 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Klokov Press 5×3
High Pulls 5×2
Dumbbell Shrug 3×20
Cable Side Raises 5×20
Reverse Barbell Curl 3×15
Zercher Squat 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Leg Press 5×20
Seated Calf Raises With 3s Pause 5×10
Donkey Calf Raise OR Toes-in Standing Calf Raise 5×20-30

WEEK 2

Incline Bench Press 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Push Press 5×2
Power Shrugs 5×5
Dumbbell Upright Row 4×12
Face Pulls 3×15
Hammer Curl 3×10
Front Squat 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Pistol Squats 3×3
Standing Calf Raises With 2s Pause 5×12-20
Calf Raise On Leg Press 5×12-20
Standing Cable Crunches 5×20

WEEK 3

Seated Overhead Press 1-3RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Viking Press 5×8
Power Clean 6×3
Farmer Walk 5×30-60s
Crucifix Holds 3×30-60s
Reverse Barbell Curls off pins 3×3
High Bar Squat 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Single-legged Leg Press 5×10
Standing Calf Raises Off Block 4s Bottom Pause 3×10-12
Seated Calf Raises Toes-in 5×10-15

WEEK 4

Wide Overhead Press off Medium Pins 1-3RM
Zydrunas Press 5×8
Power Snatch 5×2
Barbell Shrugs 5×15
Scarecrows 3×10
Reverse Cable Curl 3×15
Bulgarian Split Squat 1-3RM or 4-10RM + 3 Back-Off Sets/Triple Dropset
Hack Squat 4×12
Calf Raise on Leg Press 5×30
Standing Calf Raise 5×10

FIN

Did you like this program?

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