Strength & Fitness Newsletter

This Week on Straight to the Bar

I’m constantly amazed at just how much my training is influenced by the people on this site. Whether you’re looking for a new piece of equipment, an unusual exercise variation or just an idea of how others approach things, you’ll enjoy these :

Over to you. I’d love to hear what you think : leave your comments on the above articles, and share them with your friends/colleagues/clients and so on.


NB : If you’d like to submit your own piece for Straight to the Bar, here’s how.


Video : Planche Progression Guide

Want to know how to work up to the Planche? Over to Caleb.


Good stuff.

Gymchat 201 – Hormonal Optimisation (with Josh Hewett)

How do you go about fine-tuning something like fat loss? Once you’ve made the major adjustments, where do you go from there?
This week we’ll be discussing just one part of the puzzle – hormone optimisation. The various ways to measure and adjust your hormone production, in order to achieve better body composition. Helping us tackle this fascinating area is Personal Trainer and Strongman Josh Hewett, alongside Personal Trainer Kirk Fontaine. Should be a great one – see you there.


NB : If this is the first time you’re joining us for one of the Video Gymchats, welcome. There are three basic ways to watch this (depending on whether you want to join us on the Hangout and ask a question or two, or just sit back and take it all in) – full details here. However you like to do it, we’ve got you covered.


Details –
Who : Josh Hewett
Topic : Hormonal Optimisation
When : Wednesday Apr 17, 9pm EST
URL : We’ll be announcing this shortly – both on the blog and on Google+ itself.
How : Google+ Hangout. If you’ve never been to one, here’s how to take part.
NB : If this is the first time you’re joining us for one of the Video Gymchats, welcome. There are three basic ways to watch this (depending on whether you want to join us on the Hangout and ask a question or two, or just sit back and take it all in) – full details here. However you like to do it, we’ve got you covered.



Previously : In Gymchat 200 we talked about ‘Beginning Powerlifting‘, with serious fan of the iron Chadwick Haines (aka Horse From Hell) and Personal Trainer Kirk Fontaine. Great discussion.
If you missed the broadcast, the video is available over on Kirk’s Youtube Channel. That’s also the best place to subscribe to the videos directly, and to see previous discussions.


If you’d like to suggest a future topic, or schedule an interview for one of the upcoming discussions, you can send us a message privately here, or swing by our Community site on Google+. Look forward to hearing from you.

Tip of the Week: A Routine for Neck-Training Beginners

Each week we publish a number of tips and techniques via Twitter, Google+, the blog; and now the newsletter. Wherever you are, there’s always a way to improve what you’re doing.


I love a dose of neck training. Using a neck harness, a fitness ball, bodyweight exercises and so on. There are certainly more than a few ways to do it.
This tip comes to us from last year’s Gymchat on the topic, and is a routine aimed at complete neck-training beginners who are looking to get started on this wonderful journey. Over to Andrew Nalepa.

Good news for anyone who is beginning neck training, “you” are pretty much all you need. I like Mike Bruce’s beginner program on Straight to the Bar, but another really simple beginner program is this :

Lay on your back on the floor, or on your bed, and just raise your head, curling your chin to your upper chest, as many times as you can. Then lay on your stomach, and raise your chin to the ceiling as many times as possible. Then lay on your side and curl your ear toward your shoulder as many times as you can, and then lay on your other side and do the same thing.


Many people who have never done any neck training have difficulty just laying on their back and curling just their head 20 times. It is a really simple starting point just using gravity. To progress, you could do more reps, do more sets, or start holding a book to your head as you do your repetitions.

NB : if you like the sound of this and want to further explore the wonderful world of neck training, check out the free guide here. The exercises, equipment and techniques you’ll need.

Checking Out : Pushing the Limits!

Fantastic book.


A couple of months ago we looked at the PDF version, which is definitely a worthy investment. And now, I’m pleased to see that a paperback edition is also available. Looks great.
If you missed the original announcement and are just wondering what it’s all about, a brief clip from Jason Ferruggia’s foreword (full version here) will give you an idea :

Pushing the Limits! is the book I wish I had when I first started working out. Knowing Al’s secrets and various progressions would have saved me years of wasted time, frustration and injuries. As awesome as Raising the Bar was I think Al has taken it to another level with Pushing the Limits!. The variations of The Big Three and progressions Al lays out will keep you busy for years.

Al Kavadlo‘s Pushing the Limits!. Superb.


Quick update on the Renaissance Fitness Supplement Kits we mentioned recently – superb idea.
As we noted, we’ll be reviewing these shortly. And if you missed the announcement, here’s a brief video to explain the basic idea :

For more information, head on over to the official site – renaissancefitnessinc.com.

Exercise of the Week : The Many Uses of a Viking Press



The guys at Riot Training demonstrate some of the many ways to use a Viking Press machine. Nice one.


Incidentally, if you’d like to get in touch regarding this or any other aspect of strength, you can contact me here. Look forward to hearing from you.

Kettlebell Exercise Demonstrations & Tutorials

Pavel Tsatsouline with Flamebell

We’ve looked at a lot of kettlebell exercises and variations over the years – in the form of tips, tutorials and demonstrations.
Where do you find them all? Right here – a complete list of Kettlebell Exercise Demonstrations & Tutorials.
Enjoy.

A Daily Dose

Straight to the Bar Daily

Love this stuff? Same here. If you’re looking for a daily dose of strength-training goodness, grab the Straight to the Bar Daily.
Absolutely free.

Free Downloads from the Strength Kit

Returning to Heavy Training After a Break

I recently added a number of resources to the Straight to the Bar Strength Kit, and as a Strength & Fitness Newsletter subscriber you’re more than welcome to download as many of them as you like. Several great eBooks, podcasts and videos – all absolutely free.
Just head over here, save them to your hard-drive, and dive in.
Good stuff.


NB : This is an ever-changing list. If you’d like to put your own work in front of a fantastic strength-focussed audience, let me know.

Want to Help Out?

Shout!

As you’ve doubtless noticed, in addition to the main site is a Community on Google+, Facebook and Twitter. Wherever you are, a daily dose of strength isn’t all that far away.
To help run all of these sites, we’re on the lookout for several new Moderators. To welcome new community members, bring up new items to discuss and generally keep the conversations on track.


If you’re already spending a bit of time at any of the above sites, and would like to offer your services as a Moderator, just drop us a line below. And thanks for that, it really is appreciated.

Contact either :

Kirk Fontaine, Community Manager, Straight to the Bar



or me :
Scott Andrew Bird, Editor, Straight to the Bar



Thanks again. Look forward to hearing from you.