0Bench presses are overemphasized in most training programs. Sure, they are a good exercise and a great way to build mass and strength in the upper body, but for combat athletes and martial artists, the standing press performed with barbells is a much better exercise because it’s movement is more natural and more specific for live combat.
0Most training programs emphasize the showy muscles of the upper body – arms, pecs, and abs. A combat athlete needs to develop the POWER muscles: legs, hips, lower back, traps, sides, neck, and forearms. The rest of the body will grow bigger and stronger with very little in the way of direct exercise as long as you train the power groups.
0On the street, on the mat, or in the ring, strength, power, speed, and condition are what counts. “Cuts” and training for it don’t mean anything and doesn’t make sense to a combat athlete. If you are training for combat and martial arts, forget about “bodybuilding.” Combat athletes need to train in an entirely different manner than posers, pumpers, shapers, toners, and body sculptors.
Why is it that most of the modern systems we have now are ineffective in gaining muscle and strength?
0Modern systems that advocate lifting the weights real slow, going for the burn, or training for the pump let you train with weights so light you’d have to weigh them twice to get a reading on the scale. I know for a fact that no one gets big and strong on this sort of training. Light weights won’t build muscle. If you want to become bigger, faster, and stronger, your primary and exclusive focus should be on packing weight onto the bar in the basic exercises. Until you make that your prime objective, your weight training career is never going to get off the ground.
0With your toes raised on a block of wood and with the bar on your shoulders or in your hands, stand with your back against a post or a door frame or a corner of a wall and lean back slightly and slide up and down this as you work. This keeps you from swinging and taking the effort from the calf muscles. Make the movements extreme -- go all the way up, and then go all the way down. This works the calves over their full range of motion strongly.
0As have often been said, it is not so much what you do as how you do it that determines results. There is not too much room for mistakes in selections of exercises, but there is room for hundreds of mistakes in performance. Performance and execution must be right and on point everytime so one can make the most out of any training program.
0If you are a beginner, you should workout three times per week. Your first workout should be rather easy, to avoid discouraging soreness of the muscles. Next workout you can do a little more and by the 4th and 5th you can be working really hard. You should use a poundage with which you can perform 6 or 7 repetitions to start with and work up to 10 before adding another 5 pounds. The first month you will do but one set for each exercise. The following month you will do two sets.
0Basic weight training is a series of exercises designed to develop each and every muscle of the body in proportion to its importance in the building of physiological health, vigorous strength, and muscularity. When you forego doing the basic exercises properly, those movements whose great function is to prepare your body physiologically for greater efforts, you cheat no one but yourself. With basic weight training, aside from strengthening each individual muscle, the body is trained to work and function as a unit, and the internal organs are also strengthened in the process.
0Even if you start with a lot less muscle compared to other trainees, you can still become strong as long as your training programs are well-thought of. Follow a basic program using the compound barbell and free weight movements, use perfect form everytime, train consistently, eat healthy food, exercise well within yourself in practice, and be smart and train longer on basic, fundamental practice. Also, work for strength, speed, and skill, and let quality, not quantity, of muscle be your goal. Persistent work will eventually give you both.
0The first requisite for gripping ability and hand strength is size. Size and proper proportion for grip strength is a matter of leverage. The second requisite for great grip power is intensive training, and this means hard work. Aside from that, you need to start early so you can maximize the increase in size and strength during the growing years before the bones in the hands reach their maximum growth. During their formation, bones, like muscles, require exercise. Non-use will cause atrophy, and this is especially true during the period of adolescence.
0A very important rule in training to break records is to handle very heavy weights in the assistance exercises. If, for instance, one expects to clean four hundred pounds, he should be able to lift near five hundred pounds as possible. He should also try to get his squats up to five hundred pounds or more. Partial movements must also be extremely heavy to teach the body to adapt to huge poundages. Walking with very heavy weights also builds tremendous body power.
The primary factor of power training is low reps and high sets. The second most important factor is the use of exercises which develop and strengthen the large muscle groups of the back, chest, and legs. By taking liberties with this second factor, one can come up with all sorts of variations for power training.
0In doing squats you should squat just past the parallel position. In the bench press use the grip which will enable you to use the most weight. Avoid the extremely wide or extremely narrow grips as they could raise injury to the wrists when using heavy weights. As much as possible, do all power training exercises 8 to 10 sets of from 3 to 5 repetitions.
0Progress in physical training and bodybuilding is a matter of proper exercise for the muscle tissue and proper nourishment for growth. This means a proper training program of correctly selected exercises performed in a proper manner as to poundages, repetitions, sets, and frequency. Proper rest for recuperation and correct nutrition are also necessary.
0As you continue to train, you will have setbacks and delays and at some point your training will get off track and you may wonder if you are ever going to develop the power and development you desire. At moments like that, you will be tempted to think its okay to be mediocre, but don’t give in and don’t settle for modest results. Determine now and forever that you will achieve the goals you have set for yourself. Nail yourself to your goals, and always think of the thousands before you who have achieved strength, power, size, and muscular development from weight training. IF THEY CAN DO IT, SO CAN YOU!
0Always pull the weight up close to the body, don not swing it far out in front of the body. At first you may feel a little discomfort in the shoulder joints. Therefore, start out with light weights and gradually work up to heavier ones. Do not use weights so heavy you cannot do the movements correctly.
0The deltoids come in for the largest share of work. For development one should use a weight that permits you to make complete movements correctly. By complete movements, I mean pulling the bar from a dead hang until the bar is in front of the face at a maximum height. These maximum contractions will greatly benefit muscle building, although not so necessary for strength development.
0Some men prefer to rest their forehead on a support while doing their rowing exercise. It is ok because it does prevent cheating but doing it without a support allows for better action. Keep the shoulders low at all times, never allow the body to come erect while performing the movement for the lats, and keep the slight up and down movement at a minimum.
0For the development of power you should use heavier weights and fewer reps (about 5). You will not have to be so careful to make complete movements either. You should start out with a light weight you can bring clear up and then add weight for additional sets until you have weights heavy enough that you can just raise them about waist high. In exercising for development, you should be strict with no body sway to assist you, but in training for strength you can use a certain degree of sway or body English to your advantage as it will help you to use heavier weights.
0You don’t learn about strength training by reading or writing about it. You learn the art (and it IS an art) by DOING it. I am not saying that you have to look like a super heavyweight lifter or the current Mr. Everything in order to be qualified to give training advice (That would be silly; those guys are druggers and steroid users, and druggers have nothing whatsoever to say to natural lifters.) I am saying that you have to have many years of heavy hard training under your belt before you have very much to offer to others. Reading, memorizing, and restating or paraphrasing what others have written doesn’t cut it. It is for this reason why you need to be picky on who you get your information from, even personal trainers. Your personal trainers may know a lot about strength training from reading and studying, but if they themselves are not strength athletes, then you’re better of asking someone who’s been “in the trenches” so to speak.