Strength & Fitness Newsletter

What's This?

The Strength & Fitness Newsletter is a weekly email newsletter which summarises the things added to Straight to the Bar (as well as a few gems from the archives). Absolutely free.

btw, I’d love to hear your feedback – both on the individual items and the newsletters themselves. Drop a comment below the relevant issue, or swing by Twitter ( I’m @scottbird ).




DragonDoor Workshops

Ready To Learn Even More?

I love learning new skills, and the many seminars & workshops available are a great way to do that. If you’re looking for a specific type of workshop nearby, check out the ones on Dragon Door. Great mix of kettlebell and calisthenics-based offerings.


I listen to an ever-changing pool of podcasts, discussing the many aspects of training and nutrition possible. Most recently :
FoundMyFitness (Dr Matthew Walker on Sleep)

Over to you. Any you’d recommend?

Strength Training on Instagram

It’s fair to say that we’ve checked out quite a few images over the years – on Flickr & Smugmug in particular.

A friend of mine just pointed me to Chris Stanciu ‘s Instagram feed, which contains a great mix of nutrition and workout images :

NB : if you’d like to share your own images, just add them to one of the sites noted above and send us a link.

Strength Training on Facebook

I suspect you love talking about strength training constantly (certainly the case here), and you’re always on the lookout for places to do that. Comments on various sites, forums as well as various in-person communities.

Online, I gravitate toward both Twitter and Facebook. In addition to the SttB offerings, here’s another one you may wish to check out :

Garage Gym Reviews (Cooper Mitchell’s page)

We’ve noted a few of his videos in the past, and they’re great for diving in deep on a particular type of equipment. Nice one.

Twitter Lists

I use Twitter for a number of things, as I’m sure everyone else here does. To talk about strength training, nutrition and many other topics. Works well.

To make this a little easier – and so people can dive right in to the topics that interest them – I use Twitter’s ‘List functionality quite a bit. There’s a full list of them here :

Whatever you’re in to, it’s all there.

NB : the above lists are always being fine-tuned. If you know of someone who tweets regularly about a particular subject and should be on one of them, let me know.

Other (Daily) Newsletters You Might Like

Finally, for a daily dose of tangentially-related information – check out the following. All are compiled daily, and cover the following topics :

Aging & Longevity (living for a very, very long time)
Electric Cars in Australia (great way to help tackle air-pollution)
Better Sleep Nightly (my favourite form of recovery)

And yes, they’re absolutely free.

Bruce Lee : The Art of Expressing the Human Body (Bruce Lee & John Little)

If you’ve ever watched a Bruce Lee film and marveled at his strength, speed, agility, endurance, flexibility or muscularity, this book should take pride of place in your collection. Unlike many other writings covering everything from Lee’s training methods to nutrition, this book is based not on the recollections of people around him; but on Lee’s own notes. Brilliant.

Definitely worthy of a place on the fitness shelf.

Bruce Lee : The Art of Expressing the Human Body.

Monday, 22 March 2010

On the Forums

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, head over to the forums :

Ready to add your own workout log or training article? Just head over to the Articles & Logs page and log in, and click ‘Post to Your Blog‘. That’s all there is to it.

NB : if you like what you see, show the authors your appreciation by voting (using the icons for Digg, StumbleUpon etc above each article). Cheers.

Video – Traveling Push Up

Another great push-up variety – the Traveling Push Up.
Good fun.

Deal of the Week : Powerclubs

I love club training.
During the week I got a couple of emails from people asking where to get clubs in the UK; the short answer, London Kettlebells. Perfect.
Incidentally, no matter where you are in the world, there’s a good chance that you’re not too far from a supplier of these wonderful tools. Here are several others that I’ve used over the years, as well as those that come highly recommended by trainers I’ve worked with.

Coming Events

Twitterchat 58 – Making Your Own : Combat Training Equipment : Building your own gym equipment is a fantastic way to kickstart the home gym, no matter what your training goals are. What’s more, it’s an inexpensive way to get a taste of the many options available.
This week we’re diving into the world of DIY Combat Training Equipment – everything from medicine balls and sandbags to clubs, rings and push-up boards. There are hundreds of superb home-made tools just waiting to be constructed.
Helping us to navigate this fascinating area is Keith Johnson – better known as (@Ogedei). Fantastic.

Details –
Who : Strength-training fans
Topic : Making Your Own : Combat Training Equipment
When : Wed Mar 24, 9pm EST (1am UTC)
How : include #sbgym in your tweets (here’s how)
To see when it’s on in your timezone, head over to the twitterchat calendar.
See you there.
Got an event that you’d like to add? Let me know.

Reading : The Bending eBook

This is a fantastic book.
Although it came out more than 3 years ago now, I still refer to this book regularly (the review will help explain why). And what’s more, the latest version contains a host of updates which will certainly help take your bending up a notch.
Filled with detailed information on the materials and techniques you’ll need, this is an incredible resource. If you’re just getting serious about short steel bending, you need this book.

Exercise of the Week : Renegade Row

The Renegade Row is a fantastic exercise.
Named after Coach John ‘The Renegade‘ Davies, it’s a controlled lift with each arm (independently) from a near-push-up position. As with many exercises, the simplest way to learn it is to see a bit of video, and try it out for yourself.
Here’s the kettlebell version of the humble Renegade Row. Good fun.

NB : the weights being lifted can be in the form of kettlebells, dumbbells or anything else that’s close to hand. Experiment.