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  • glennpendlay 11:36 pm on May 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Instant gratification 

    What is the biggest problem with American weightlifting today?  The pursuit of instant gratification.  This has always been a temptation, but with the advent of the internet (and social media) the temptation has become overpowering.  And unfortunately, the training that leads to the most dramatic short term gains often isn’t what leads to long term progress.

    Case in point:  Almost everyone understands that fatigue from a big squat workout is likely to lower your capability in the clean and jerk for at least a day or two!  And the kind of strength program that leads to bigger numbers in the squat and deadlift and vastly increased potential clean and jerk is likely to leave your weightlifting numbers depressed for a while.

    As a beginner, you should be completely recovered (or close to it) before every workout.  Every workout holds the potential for new records not only in the snatch and clean and jerk, but also in the strength building lifts like the squat, deadlift, and push press.  But as your career progresses it takes more and more training stress to cause an adaptation.  Soon squatting hard enough to make continual progress in the squat means you will not be able to approach each and every workout in a completely recovered and fresh condition.  At some point, the start of a training cycle becomes the time to work on weak points and improving the squat and deadlift, and the end of the training cycle becomes the time to put it all together and use that strength to lift new numbers in the snatch and clean and jerk.

    In fact the more you advance as a lifter the more you have to live with delayed gratification.  Not being able to take the long view is the sign of an immature mind and an immature lifter.  If you know it takes time to build a big total you might be ready for a program that requires more than simply maxing out every day and hoping for the best.  For those of you who enjoy a challenge and have the maturity to stay the course, the X-Files might be right for you.

    https://www.stickthejerk.com/x-files-sign-up-sheet.html

     

     

     


     
  • glennpendlay 11:36 pm on May 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    Instant gratification 

    What is the biggest problem with American weightlifting today?  The pursuit of instant gratification.  This has always been a temptation, but with the advent of the internet (and social media) the temptation has become overpowering.  And unfortunately, the training that leads to the most dramatic short term gains often isn’t what leads to long term progress.

    Case in point:  Almost everyone understands that fatigue from a big squat workout is likely to lower your capability in the clean and jerk for at least a day or two!  And the kind of strength program that leads to bigger numbers in the squat and deadlift and vastly increased potential clean and jerk is likely to leave your weightlifting numbers depressed for a while.

    As a beginner, you should be completely recovered (or close to it) before every workout.  Every workout holds the potential for new records not only in the snatch and clean and jerk, but also in the strength building lifts like the squat, deadlift, and push press.  But as your career progresses it takes more and more training stress to cause an adaptation.  Soon squatting hard enough to make continual progress in the squat means you will not be able to approach each and every workout in a completely recovered and fresh condition.  At some point, the start of a training cycle becomes the time to work on weak points and improving the squat and deadlift, and the end of the training cycle becomes the time to put it all together and use that strength to lift new numbers in the snatch and clean and jerk.

    In fact the more you advance as a lifter the more you have to live with delayed gratification.  Not being able to take the long view is the sign of an immature mind and an immature lifter.  If you know it takes time to build a big total you might be ready for a program that requires more than simply maxing out every day and hoping for the best.  For those of you who enjoy a challenge and have the maturity to stay the course, the X-Files might be right for you.

    https://www.stickthejerk.com/x-files-sign-up-sheet.html

     

     

     


     
  • Shawn Myszka 7:45 pm on April 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Some random thoughts on movement & performance of NFL players 

    Annually, at this time of the year, a couple of things are bound to happen for me during the training of my NFL players:

    -A lot of ideas swirl around my head on the daily. Some of these ideas are good…others pretty bad. Some are theoretical…while some are immediately applicable. Some are logical…and more are pretty far out there. Some are fleeting whereas some others are consistent and continue to hit me like a ton of bricks.

    -I don’t have a ton of extra time to whip together content of any sort. Thus, writing for my blog often becomes an afterthought.

    That all said, I have a rare open hour so I decided to write a different type of blog post today to tick off the boxes above and share some of these thoughts in the process.

    They will read like the post-it notes across my desk(s) do…short, sporadic and random. There may be some themes throughout but for the most part they will likely be all over the place…which shouldn’t come as to much of a shock if you’ve ever had a conversation with me.

    If this blog is well-received, I may consider making it a more frequent occurrence. So, without further adieu, here’s a look into some (trust me you don’t want to hear them all) of the random thoughts circulating around in my head right now.

    -NFL players are just like you and I. I mean, except they recover way quicker and they are capable of operating at way higher outputs. So, these things all equate to meaning; NFL players are actually not like us at all.

    -Which car, both being pushed to its limits, is more dangerous to drive? A Ferrari or a Pinto? The Ferrari of course…b/c its limits are at 200+ mph. You can push an NFL player to the brinks of the edges of their capabilities…as long as they weren’t actually over the edge, they are likely to bounce back really quickly and perform stellar in the meantime. If they DID go over the edge, watch the F out…b/c either they are really depleted and their whole life is going to get negatively affected from this and/or you just set them up for injury (sometimes a really bad one).

    -You can/should screen the little things (how much they are talking, how they are standing, what are they doing during rest periods, etc) in between activities way more than you screen for the behaviors you see occurring during movement or performances. These little things tell you how ready they are but also what types of learning and/or adaptation you can actually get from the next activities that are performed (as well as others performed before this).

    -Slow to smooth, smooth to fast. As Buddy Morris says, “moving slow gets the brain’s attention.” Sometimes to change behavior the quickest way to get the player to coordinate, control, and organize movement more competently is to have them slow down so they can account for changes/nuances at any of the 3 B’s of the movement solution (behaviors, brain, biomechanics). But then the first way to hit the movement save button on a competent behavior is to increase the speed of its execution. Then you should increase repetitions. Then SOON AFTER THIS increase the complexity or variability of the activities prescribed.

    -Both retention and transfer would be increased immensely if coaches would be more apt to go to repetition without repetition models earlier in their progressions. One problem to this; coaches are too interested in appeasing other coaches to actually follow through on repetition without repetition. Solution; stop worrying about what other coaches think of what our athletes look like while they practice. Instead, focus on if, and to what degree, players are actually learning and transferring movement skills from the practice field and training arena to the game field on Sundays.

    -People blame the current NFL CBA for the annual injury incidence rates. I don’t. Spending more time with team coaches (of any sort…position and strength alike) is not going to fix that. Sorry I am not sorry…I have watched what teams do and how they practice…most practices and models are terrible and translate little to increased skilled performance especially under chaos, pressure, fatigue, anxiety, etc. Thus, changes to CBA wouldn’t do crap…instead, change the practice habits and the behaviors that emerge from those practices and I speculate injuries are going to go down b/c skill & preparedness (not physical preparation but skill preparation) will be greater.

    -Why aren’t any teams incorporating a true Performance Therapy model like that which is being driven down in Phoenix, AZ at Altis? Move, observe, treat, move, observe, treat, so on and so forth.

    -I love the influx of NFL sport science. But there’s one problem…many of the NFL’s sport scientists are studying numbers…some are studying players…and fewer are actually studying (to truly understand) the behaviors of those players especially when and where it counts (i.e. in games). I know they can’t put GPS on the players in games so don’t tweet at me or comment on this blog about that…I am talking about being able to explain what it’s happening and why it’s happening that way…when a player has a tactical demand, there is an opponent in front of them, and they most use their sport and movement skills to problem solve. You don’t need data to study that…you need knowledge and wisdom and a detailed eye.

    -Some of the best movers I have seen during closed agility tasks (i.e. change-of-direction tasks) are the worst movers during open agility tasks (i.e. reactive agility tasks). The behaviors (where the attention flows from a perceptual standpoint) and the brain (how intention is driven from the decisions to be made) can and often does change everything!

    -If Strength Coaches analyzed sport movement skills as much as they analyze exercises or program design, their practices would be drastically different and the level of transfer from their training means/methods would be significantly higher.

    -If Position Coaches analyzed sport movement skills as much as they analyze tactical strategies and X & O’s, their practices would be drastically different and the level of transfer from their training means/methods would be significantly higher.

    -Though I am from small town Wisconsin, I hate farms. One thing that is a staple of most farms is the existence of silos. NFL organizations are like farms; one thing that is a staple of most NFL organizations is the existence of silos. Break down the silos…get everyone on the same page…many things will advance…including the players’ performance.

    Okay, that’s probably enough randomness for today!

     


     
  • glennpendlay 5:55 pm on April 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Second City CrossFit 

    My last seminar (at least the last one on this trip) was in Birmingham at Second City CrossFit.  The drive from Wales to Birmingham was less than 2 hours and we stayed the night at Seb’s mothers house.  The fact that we stayed only about 5 minutes from the seminar allowed us to sleep a little late and this is always welcomed when you are doing two seminars back to back the same weekend.  Second City CrossFit is one of the biggest, most spacious boxes I have been in, even being larger than most in the US.   I also loved the fact than they had a Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy penned up in a little kennel in the front of the gym.  I know right away that I am going to love a gym if there is a cool dog running around.

    Where the seminar before this one had a mix of advanced lifters and complete beginners, this seminar had more intermediate lifters.  Since this is the group I get the most satisfaction out of coaching i had a really good time here.  I also felt really good about the fact that several of the attendees seemed to really understand the concepts and make big strides while we were going over snatch pull technique.  All in all this seminar was a success!


     
  • glennpendlay 8:58 am on April 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Willpower weightlifting club 

    We did a small seminar in Wales on Saturday at Willpower weightlifting club.  We set this one up at the very last minute but I was really just as interested in meeting the owner, Justin Holly, and eating one of his meals as I was in doing the seminar.  I had heard from Shankle that this man could cook and it turns out he was right!  I got there Friday night and Justin cooked us a 7kg rib roast, Yorkshire pudding, and potatoes that were roasted to perfection.  Justin threatened to also make peas but they never materialized. But even without peas the meal was among the best I had ever eaten.  I simply don’t know how that rib roast could have possibly been better.

    The lifting was a mix of really great lifters and total beginners.  Jordan Sakkass, Welsh junior champion and commonwealth youth champion was probably the best with lifts of a 145 snatch from blocks and a 170ish clean and jerk at age 17.  There were 4 other lifters from Willpower who were very nearly at the same level.  There were also several other lifters who also trained at Justin’s club who were more beginners.  In fact one of them did his very first snatch during the seminar, he had come mainly for the programming lecture so that he could apply some of the ideas to his powerlifting training.  For a seminar that was set up basically in 36 hours I think it went pretty well.  Especially that rib roast and the Yorkshire pudding…

     


     
  • glennpendlay 7:58 am on April 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    CrossFit Pi 

    CrossFit Pi in Exeter is  the most spacious and well equipped gym I have seen in a long time.  The owner Martin Uttley studied at Brunel University and was a high level rugby player before opening his gym.  I am not sure what I like best about this facility, the coffee dispenser, or the platforms!  But I do know that it is far nicer than most CrossFit facilities in the USA and both Martin and his staff seem to be great coaches and totally dedicated to making this facility the best that it can possibly be.


     
  • glennpendlay 7:58 am on April 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    CrossFit Pi 

    CrossFit Pi in Exeter is  the most spacious and well equipped gym I have seen in a long time.  The owner Martin Uttley studied at Brunel University and was a high level rugby player before opening his gym.  I am not sure what I like best about this facility, the coffee dispenser, or the platforms!  But I do know that it is far nicer than most CrossFit facilities in the USA and both Martin and his staff seem to be great coaches and totally dedicated to making this facility the best that it can possibly be.


     
  • glennpendlay 6:29 pm on April 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Tour of England 


     

    I flew into Bristol Friday April 14th and I have been doing seminars in the UK for the last two weeks. The first one was at AFS CrossFit inAndover which was a pretty big seminar with 31 people attending. AFS is a nice gym and quite a few good lifters were in attendance. Chris Murray was probably the best, he is moving to 77 from 69 and was weighing about 74 on the day of the seminar. Very quick lifter who was also very consistent with his movements the whole day. He was able to snatch 125kg and tried 133kg for an all time PR but missed. He still had a hell of a day.  Quite a few people also attempted the Pendlay certification with several passing.  Overall a great introduction to the UK!


     
  • glennpendlay 6:29 pm on April 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    Tour of England 


     

    I flew into Bristol Friday April 14th and I have been doing seminars in the UK for the last two weeks. The first one was at AFS CrossFit inAndover which was a pretty big seminar with 31 people attending. AFS is a nice gym and quite a few good lifters were in attendance. Chris Murray was probably the best, he is moving to 77 from 69 and was weighing about 74 on the day of the seminar. Very quick lifter who was also very consistent with his movements the whole day. He was able to snatch 125kg and tried 133kg for an all time PR but missed. He still had a hell of a day.  Quite a few people also attempted the Pendlay certification with several passing.  Overall a great introduction to the UK!


     
  • Anthony Mychal 3:47 pm on April 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    muscle is a byproduct 

    Everyone wants muscle mass, but muscle mass isn't really something you directly train for. This is why things are (probably) more confusing than they should be.

    Muscle growth is a byproduct of moving your body a certain way through a certain environment; growing is a calculated decision your body makes in order for you to be able to better tolerate an environment.

    A better (more human) way to think of volume, reps, muscle mass, and everything I've been trying to explain is via (a) load, and (b) time.

    Muscle mass is a product of load and time. A higher gravity environment (more strength) encourages better muscle gains, but you have to stay in that environment long enough to convince the body that the investment (in more muscle mass) is worth it.

    • Higher load is better.
    • Sustaining load is better.

    The key is combining the two in some way or another.

    It's sort of like building a callus.

    You can rub your hand on a brick aggressively for one second, but you're not going to get a callus from that short exposure.

    You can rub a feather on your hand all day, but you're not going to get a callus from that soft of a surface.

    You need repeated, sustained harsh enough exposures.

    If you're struggling to gain muscle, it's probably because of one (or both) of these variable isn't developed enough.

    Either you aren't exposing yourself to a high enough gravity environment, or you aren't sustaining exposure enough. (Assuming you're also accounting for food.)

    The post muscle is a byproduct appeared first on Anthony Mychal.

     
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