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 ).

 

cheers,

Scott

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.

Podcasts

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 :

instagram.com/officialgainsthetics.

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 :

https://twitter.com/scottbird/lists

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.

Ferocious Fitness (Phil Ross, Marty Gallagher)

Remember this? Great book. Ferocious Fitness : A Fighter’sProven Action Plan to Develop Blazing Power, Animalistic Strength and Killer Conditioning is a distillation of Phil Ross’ trainingwisdom, in the form of a superbly comprehensive book.

We took a look at the digital version recently, and you’ll be pleased to know that the paperback version is now available. Definitely worthy of a place on the fitness shelf.

Phil Ross’ Ferocious Fitness.

NB : My own ‘to read‘ list is over on Goodreads, and I’m always looking to add to it. Suggestions welcome.

Monday, 30 Jun 2014

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 : The Pass Around



Nice one.

Gymchat 251 – Gaining Maximum Functional Muscle Mass (Bud Jeffries)

What’s the relationship between size and strength? How much muscle mass do you need to add to get seriously strong, and at what point does it actually work against you?
This week we’ll be tackling this enigmatic area with the incredible Bud Jeffries, who I first saw performing in 2006 (he was tackling a bottom-up-squat with an insane 1,000lb).


Joining Bud is Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett. Fantastic.


NB : We’d love to hear your questions and comments. If there’s a particular subject you’d like Bud and Josh to address, just swing by the event page for this Gymchat and leave a comment or jump in the Hangout and ask them directly.
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 : Performing Strongman Bud Jeffries, Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett, and You
Topic : Gaining Maximum Functional Muscle Mass
When : Wednesday Jul 2, 8:00pm EDT (the Event page shows what time that is in your local timezone).
How : Watch the live stream, or join the hangout (get your questions ready), directly on the Event page. We’ll also post the full video shortly after the Gymchat.

Previously : In Gymchat 250 we discussed Serious Training for Ignored Populations (with Personal Trainer & Massage Therapist Bill Kociaba, joined by Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett). Great conversation.
If you missed the live stream (or just want to go over a particular point again), you can watch the entire video here.

Tip of the Week: Overhand Card Tearing

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.


Tearing cards

Completed tear.

When it comes to the various feats of performing strongmen & women, one that frequently comes to mind is the tearing of a deck of cards. In the article Overhand Card Tearing, Bikes Cut the Correct Way, Adam explains the basic technique for doing exactly that :

  1. Hold it firmly

    Hold it firmly.

    Hold the deck firmly with your weak hand (right side shown for me) with the deck firmly and horizontal to the floor.

  2. Pinch the deck

    Pinch the deck.

    Pinch the deck with the strong hand with the thumb and index finger. It’s the same grip you use to use a remote control.

  3. Pull towards your chest

    Pull towards your chest.

    Pull your strong hand (pinch side) towards your chest. The index finger splits the deck. You must pinch hard!

  4. Turn your weak hand towards the floor

    Turn your weak hand towards the floor.

    Continue to pull hand towards your chest, turn your weak hand towards the floor. The deck will rip – not twist – if you have a tight grip. The tear line will be clean.

  5. Separate the deck

    Separate the deck.

    Continue to pinch the deck hard and pull back towards your chest until you separate the deck. The line will be a clean cut right through the deck. With this method you can put the cut anywhere you want on the deck.

Tearing cards

Tearing cards.

It takes pain tolerance and hand strength with this method. Keep practicing. THERE IS NO TRICK. Rub some lip balm on your hands after you tear if the skin is raw.


I can now rip decks of bicycles in less than 3 seconds, and quarter them in a second with this grip. It makes you strong.

NB : it’s certainly possible, but by no means easy. If you enjoyed doing that and would like to take it a step further, check out Jedd’s superb Card Tearing eBook. Invaluable resource.

Checking Out : Personal Trainer Magazine

Looks great.
Although I’m not a Personal Trainer myself, I’m very much interested in the world of fitness. From both the client and business sides of things.
With that in mind, I’m certainly intrigued by John Spencer Ellis’ Personal Trainer Magazine. Available in both PDF and Kindle forms (same content, it’s just personal preference), I’ll be checking it out tonight. Review soon.
Personal Trainer Magazine.


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 : The Russian Kettlebell Uppercut



The Kettlebell Uppercut. Nice and simple.


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.


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.