Resources Now Available

19th of November, 2017

We’ve added a resource page that contains products and services that we recommend.  Most of the items listed are available via Amazon by clicking the image.   We’re not going to clutter our site with links to everything you may ever need but will list something if we honestly think it will help you.

See the resources here.

Squats? The Answer Is MAYBE

3rd of November, 2017

Morality is contraband in war. -Mahatma Gandhi

Question the importance of squats on any lifting forum on the internet and typically you’ll get back a range of responses from necessary evil to better than sliced bread. Some people love pushing the squat so much they’ll tell you you need to do it if you want a bigger chest or arms. And then a breath or two later explain the principle of SAID (Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands) without blinking.

Squats, though a good leg exercise for many, aren’t necessarily the best choice for every single athlete that comes through the doors of the weight room. In other words, as we stated in a previous article, We would like to emphasize that there is nothing magical about placing a bar across ones back to develop lower body strength.

Whether or not the squat is the right choice depends on several things:

  1. Does the movement fit the subjects body. Is he 6’10” or 5’10”?
  2. Do you have a safe setup for performing squats? If a power rack is unavailable, do you have competent spotters available? Enough racks or spotters that you can run the team through the lift in a time efficient manner?
  3. Are there prior injuries that need to be compensated for, or that make performing barbell squats difficult? For example, if a players injured shoulder doesnt allow the hand to get back to grip the bar properly, then you should be looking in another direction than the barbell squat for leg and hip strength.

There are various squat machines, leg press machines, hip sled machines, lunge movements and body weight squatting movements that also strengthen your legs as well as squats do and possibly in a safer manner.

Sufficient strength can easily be acquired with movements and methods other than the barbell squat. Many athletes are too tall or don’t have the right lever arms for proper (safe) form in the squat.

I am working with an athlete that has very long legs and a short torso. She cannot squat to parallel without excessive forward lean and struggles to not fall over backwards even then. I quickly ruled out parallel barbell squats as an exercise and have had her working the leg press instead and she is progressing nicely.

In summary, we should be thinking about the athlete, any limitations they have, and how to deliver that athlete a safe, effective, time efficient method of strengthening the legs.

The weight room is a tool for an athlete to utilize to develop strength. It’s how the strength gained in the weight room is utilized by the athlete that matters, not how the strength was gained in the first place.

Don’t lose sight of that.

 

Don’t Complicate Strength

30th of October, 2017

Enthusiasm is the most important thing in life.  -Tennessee Williams

On my own, I have learned simple is best. Yet, what I read said, complex is best.

There are many reasons strength training isn’t portrayed as simple, but perhaps the biggest is that the simple is not worth as much money as complex.  Arthur Jones and other high intensity advocates had simple programs.  Many of today’s gurus teach a Soviet/Eastern European periodization that factors in the level of the tide, sunrise, moon phase, barometric pressure and the orbit of Halley’s comet.

While those programs can work as well, they work because the body is made to work hard and to follow that work with a period of rest.  I believe a lot of the reason for the pushing of the complex approach is because when you see all the factors that you must (according the the ones pushing the complex) consider,  you are sure to understand why you need to be paying top dollar for this advice, probably need a personal trainer and could never make gains on a simple program. Reminds me of lyrics from Pink Floyd’s “Mother”

Momma’s gonna put all of her fears into you.
Momma’s gonna keep you right here under her wing.
She won’t let you fly, but she might let you sing.
Momma’s gonna keep Baby cozy and warm.

In our case Mother is the excessive periodization faction and their followers. If they told you it was as simple as putting more weight on the bar when you can or doing another rep when you can and changing exercises occasionally you would start to question the worth of the coaching you were buying. The more complicated it is, the easier it is for the coach to justify their existence.

Can it be that simple? The resounding answer is yes, not only can it be that simple, it IS that simple. Look for lifting programs from people like Ken Leistner, Matt Brzycki, Kim Wood and the like. These guys practice the KISS (keep it simple, stupid) principle. You won’t see a workout called Double Negative Inverse Loading Periodization Protocol, but you just might find some effective workouts that make you stronger, larger and able to perform at a higher level in your chosen sport.

You Don’t Need To Train Explosively To Exhibit Explosiveness

3rd of September, 2015

Sep 3 “We become what we think about.”
-Earl Nightingale

A long while back in a “Dear StrongerAthletes: Success Story” (scroll down on page link takes you to) a father and mountain bike coach mentioned the improvement he’d seen in his team members and his son after utilizing the Stronger Athlete’s method of strength training.

He mentioned his son’s improvement and if you would like to see some of the things his son can do with a bike – amazing stuff – really, you need to watch this video.

 

Also check out the America’s Got Talent Profile of Jeremy Vanschoonhoven.

Happy Holidays from Stronger Athletes

2nd of December, 2014

Expressing or Developing Power.  Do you know the difference

https://strongerathletes.com/2001/12/14/expressing-power-or-developing-power/

 

Weak People Are Thieves

7th of November, 2013

I’ve never been to a gym missing a 100 lb dumbbell out of a set, but I’ve been to several missing 5, 10, and 15 pound dumbbells.  Therefore, it follows that weak people are thieves.

When Resistance Cables are Superior to Weights

28th of July, 2013

As you well know, your muscles get stronger to demands of resistance imposed on them. Resistance and only resistance. It does not matter what provides the resistance. Whether it’s a can of soup, a gallon of water, a resistance cable, a weight machine, or a free weight, a log, a barrel of concrete (shout out to Steve Justa) or even your own body weight, it’s just another form of resistance.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Way of the Weightroom

25th of July, 2013

A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES

I’m going to depart a bit from the normal training information found here and get a little more philosophical and talk about a philosophy of strength training I’ve developed.  It came about as a result of the process I went through acquiring strength.  It has nothing to do with sets and reps, or how much weight you can handle, rather it has everything to do with how you handle yourself.

Read the rest of this entry »

Some Good Advice

1st of May, 2013

“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex…. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.” – Albert Einstein

Dr. Ken Leistner wrote an article a long time a ago in Muscular Developement magazine when it wasn’t the supplement circular as it is today.

In the article, Simple Does it and Does IT ALL, Dr.  Ken laid out some gems. Read the rest of this entry »

2013 Hit Resurgence Conference is This Week

11th of March, 2013

The Hit Resurgence Conference is back again with a great line up of speakers to deliver more solid High Intensity Training information. Looks like a great lineup of speakers.

Check it out

In case you can’t make it, they do have the DVDs available.