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, 9 Aug 2010

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 :

Ready to add your own opinion, workout log or training article? Just head over to the Forums, Training Logs, or swing by the Article Submissions page. They’re fantastic ways to share your ideas.

NB : if you enjoy the articles, show the authors your appreciation by voting (using the Like, Digg and Retweet icons). Cheers.

Video : USAJG – Using Anything.

Here’s a quick look at just a few pieces of home-made training equipment. As you can see, you can certainly get a lot done regardless of what’s available.
Nice one.

DIY : Rack-Mounted Wrist Roller

One of the many great training tools discussed in the DIY Training Equipment twitterchat was @GoodyGirl77‘s rack-mounted wrist roller. Fantastic thing.
If you’re not quite sure what a rack-mounted wrist roller is all about, the video shows one in action (with an incredible 303lb, no less). And you’ll be pleased to know that they’re fairly easy to construct. Rory has detailed the process here, and this forum thread has an extra image or two.

Coming Events

Twitterchat 78 – Your First Strongman Competition

One of the many great topics brought up in the Incorporating Strongman Training discussion was ‘how to get started‘. Where to find the competitions, what the events are, and how to know if you’re ready to compete. Good stuff.
This week we’re taking a close look at these, and many other aspects of Your First Strongman Competition. Helping us explore this fascinating topic is none other than The Strength Doctor, Tim Hull (@THull); who’s currently in serious training mode for an upcoming competition himself. Fantastic.

Details –
Who : Strength-training fans
Topic : Your First Strongman Competition
When : Wed Aug 11, 9pm EDT (1am UTC)
How : Include #sbgym in your tweets.
To see when it’s on in your timezone, head over to the twitterchat calendar.
See you there.
NB : If you’d like to be a guest on a future twitterchat, let me know. It’s great to hear how other people are training.

Quick update on last week’s twitterchat : Thanks once again to everyone who took part in the discussion on DIY Training Equipment. Some superb ideas in there.
For those who missed out on the conversation, I’d love to hear your thoughts. What would you love to make, but aren’t quite sure how? Would you happily learn skills such as welding in order to put together a solid DIY Equipment project?

Getting Ready For : Paleo Cookbook

I’ve been a fan of all kinds of food for several years now, and definitely fall into the ‘foodie‘ camp.
Switching over to a Paleo diet in May 2009 certainly didn’t diminish that at all, it just made me aware of a rather large oversight in the field of ‘Paleo foodie‘ books. Helping to correct that, Health Habits (author of Paleo Diet for the 21st Century, pictured at left).
To say I’m looking forward to it is an understatement.

Exercise of the Week : Handstand Tiger Bend

The Handstand Tiger Bend (aka the Handstand version of the Mantis Push-up).
To perform the Handstand Tiger Bend, start by kicking yourself up into a handstand. Lower yourself as if beginning a Handstand Push-up, then allow yourself to fall back onto your forearms (you’ll still be in a handstand at this point, just with your forearms completely resting on the floor).
From this position, kick your legs and lift yourself back into the original handstand position. The following video demonstrates this.

And yes, it’s as hard as it looks. Enjoy.