Strength & Fitness Newsletter

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’re keen to do more writing in 2014 and would like to submit your own piece for Straight to the Bar, here’s how.


Video : Plank With Leg Lift

Nice one Sally.

Looks simple, but isn’t.

Gymchat 264 – Serious Training for Older Lifters (Bill Kociaba)

No matter what age you are, if you like lifting heavy, you like lifting heavy. At some point though, chances are you’ve been steered toward the lighter weights and less challenging routines. The exercises designed with older clients in mind.
This week we’ll be steering things back toward the serious iron. Helping us find out what’s realistic – and what’s desirable – when training older clients, is Personal Trainer & Massage Therapist Bill Kociaba; together with Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett. Fantastic.


NB : We love hearing from as many people as possible. Join Bill and Josh on the Hangout, or fire in your questions via the Q&A. Full details below.
And if you’d like to point your friends/colleagues to the discussion, just use the ‘share‘ button at the top of that page. The more the merrier.

Details –

Who : Personal Trainer & Massage Therapist Bill Kociaba, Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett, and You
Topic : Serious Training for Older Lifters
When : Monday Nov 17, 8:00pm EDT (the Event page shows what time that is in your local timezone).
How : Watch the live stream, join the hangout (just add Top Form Fitness to one of your circles, and Josh’ll send out the URL when the Hangout starts), or jump in the Q&A on the Event page itself. We’ll also post the full video on the main site shortly after the Gymchat.

Coming Up : We’ve got several fantastic discussions coming up shortly – with Powerlifter Bill Piche, Strength & Conditioning Coach Matt Palfrey and many, many others. Of course, we’re always scheduling more; if you’d like to suggest either a topic or a person that should definitely be on the show, drop us a line. Cheers.

Tip of the Week: Why Warm Up?

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.
This tip comes to us from Kirk Fontaine, and is a snippet from the discussion Stretching & Warming Up. Was a great one.


In response to a couple of questions on ‘Why Warm Up?‘ :

If you are to participate in exercise the first thing you need to do is warm up. The warm up is important to prepare your mind and body so that you can get the very best out of the exercise. The effect of a warm up on preventing injury is not clear however research does suggest increased muscle temperature decreases the risk of muscle tear.

Warming up will :

  • Increase your heart rate to give you increased blood flow around the body to the muscles
  • Improve oxygen delivery to the muscles
  • Stimulate faster muscle contraction
  • Improve the joints’ ability to endure stress.





Good stuff.

Re-Reading : The Grip Master’s Manual

The Grip Master's Manual

This is a truly superb book.
We’ve noted this one many times over the years, it’s certainly an essential book to have on your fitness shelves. If you haven’t come across it before, here’s a quick snippet from the Amazon page to give you an idea of what it’s about :

This book is THE book when it comes to grip training and becoming a well rounded athlete. Brookfield lays this book out very logically starting with a section on getting ready. He then progresses through: Advanced Lower Arm and Grip Training; Advanced Grip Challenges; and Steel Bending. No matter where you turn to this book is filled with helpful tips and ideas to get your workouts going.

The Grip Master’s Manual. Fantastic.


Quick update on the Hip Thruster we mentioned recently – fantastic thing.
Rather than trying to explain how it works, here it is in action :

Good stuff Bret, looks great.

Exercise of the Week : Kung Fu Conditioning – Kick Outs



Another great exercise – the Kick Out.


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.

New Guide : The Straight to the Bar Guide to Fat Loss

We’ve received some fantastic feedback following Vic Magary‘s Gymchats on Fat Loss, cheers. Greatly appreciated.
If fat loss is one of your own fitness goals, and you haven’t yet watched the discussions, you’ll find them all here. I’ve also added several other fat loss resources we’ve noted over the years – all of them highly recommended. Dive in.


Straight to the Bar Strength Calendar

Taking part in, helping out with or going to watch an upcoming strength competition?
Tell us about it.

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.

Giving

If you’ve been training for a while, gradually cleaning up your diet, no doubt you’ve experienced the amazing power of transformation. It’s a tremendous feeling.
If you’re ready to give someone else a hand to transform their own lives – through education, sharing equipment, financial help – take a look at the full list of organisations on the Giving page. Cheers.