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 :
- Calves : How to Build Them
How do you train your calves? Maik has a few ideas.
- Looking At : Sep 9, 2012
Scott Andrew Bird
We’ve been discussing some very interesting techniques, products and services recently. Here are the highlights.
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 : R & P (Ring and Pinkie) Hub Lifting
Gymchat 184 – Mental Preparation for Bodybuilding Contests (with Maik Wiedenbach)
This week sees the beginning of the Video Gymchats – simply a video version of the discussions we’ve been holding for more than 3 years now. Same time, same topics.
One notable change : as my own bandwidth here’s a little ordinary at best, these Video Gymchats will be held by Personal Trainer Kirk Fontaine. If you’ve joined us for the previous Gymchats, you’ll appreciate just how incredible this is. Please make him feel welcome.
For the first of the Video Gymchats, Kirk will be interviewing Olympic Athlete / Bodybuilder / Personal Trainer Maik Wiedenbach; discussing the mental side of preparing for a bodybuilding competition. The what, how and why.
Looking forward to it.
NB : I’ll post detailed instructions on the blog regarding ‘how to watch live, how to ask questions, where to find the video later‘ and so on; in the meantime, just follow either Kirk or myself on Google+. We’ll be starting at the usual time, 9pm EST on Wednesday.
Who : Olympic Athlete / Bodybuilder / Personal Trainer Maik Wiedenbach
Topic : Mental Preparation for Bodybuilding Contests
When : Wed Sep 12, 9pm EST (here’s how to find out when that is in your timezone)
How : Google+ Hangout. Follow either Kirk or Scott for details on the live feed.
See you there.
Tip of the Week: Getting Back Into It
If you’ve been away from the iron for a while, how do you get back into it?
Vic takes a thorough look at this in the ‘Returning to Heavy Training After a Break‘ ebook. For a brief overview though, check out the discussion we held on that very same topic.
In Gymchat 136 – Heavy Training after a Break, Vic noted :
I lost a LOT of strength on some lifts. It was surprising. That’s why that initial 3 weeks of lighter work was important to me – it was smart to underestimate my strength at first.
It’s important to consciously do less those first few weeks. I was off for almost 2 years – as a rule I did not put any more than 135lbs on the bar the first week. I did not push any sets to failure the next two weeks while still staying at 5 reps or less for most sets.
Checking Out : Martial Arts Stance Training (DVD)
This looks superb.
Paul Zaichik takes a look at a key component of almost every Martial Art or Yoga form; the stances. Not simply ‘how to do them‘, but a detailed examination of the essentials behind performing them flawlessly.
From the main page :
There are three components to stances, which most people lack. These are:
- Flexibility or Depth
- Strength and Endurance
- Balance and Stability
In addition common requests had to do with muscle and joint pain while performing the stances. If you are reading this, there must be a part of your stances that you want to improve. What you may not know, is that all the factors mentioned above are very interdependent. Take balance for instance. If you try to go deeper than you flexibility allows, you will fall off balance. If your joints begin to hurt, you will get out of stance or will find yourself off balance as well. The same would happen if you lack strength or endurance, you are bound to fall in one direction or another. Now that you know the above, you may be surprised to find that your strength maybe lacking due to your lack of flexibility. Your joints may hurt due to poor strength, balance or flexibility as well.
Exercise of the Week : Reverse Burpees
Love your burpees? Here’s a variation you don’t see every day – the Reverse Burpee. Over to Nina.
Good stuff. Oh, and if you’re looking for more weird and wonderful Burpee variations, have a go at these.
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
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.
Free Downloads from the Strength Kit
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.
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.