Monday, October 31, 2011

Book Review: The Great Cholesterol Con - Dr Malcolm Kendrick

Excellent read.

Spends the first two chapters explaining what is heart disease and what is fat and cholesterol.

Chapters 3-7, Dr Kendrick destroys the cholesterol hypothesis and all other ad-hoc hypothesis that came with it.

Chapter 8, Dr Kendrick gives his full take on statins, the ok, the bad, and the ugly!!

Chapters 9-11. Dr. Kendrick gives his hypothesis on what he think is one of the main causes of heart disease. Stress. Which cause a dysfunctional hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)axis.

Overall a great read. Dr Kendrick's humor throughout the book made it a very entertaining, and informative read.

I would highly recommend it!

Stay Strong,

Sunday, October 30, 2011

How I teach Hang Cleans

This is how I teach all my athletes how to perform the hang clean.

Step 1:
Teach them the catch position

Step 2:
Teach them the start position

1. Chest Up
2. Wrist Under
3. Hips Back

Step 3:
Perform the full Hang Clean

Cue to - "Jump, shrug, elbows up & Sit"


Stay Strong,


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Re-Thinking Core Training

Something I have heard Gray Cook speak about over the last few years if this concept of using a high threshold strategy. I sort of understood what he meant by this but not fully. At the Level 1 SFMA course in Holland earlier this month Kyle Kiesel touch upon this the topic of High Threshold strategies, which helped my understanding of it greatly.

Basically a High Threshold means using global muscles to always stabilizes rather than the authentic reflexive stability by the intrinsic (or local) stabilizers close to the joint.

Kyle quoted a study that showed athletes with a history of a previous low back injury would use and keep on for longer (after the task they were require to do had finished) their global muscles (Obilques, rectus, erectors, hip flexors, hamstrings). This is what a high threshold strategy is.

Kyle gave the example of an athlete attempting to perform a shuttle run, or a 10-5-10 test with a high threshold strategy, basically stating that this high threshold strategy would impair his/her performance. This is because the global prime movers also have to stabilize the spine and truck, so their prime movers cannot produce optimal mobility and force production to adequately perform the task (shuttle run, etc).

If the athlete had authentic stability at the spine, he/she would be able to contract and relax more efficently to complete the task at hand. But the high threshold strategy as pointed out above can leave certain muscle's contracted for a longer time period of time, even when the task requires for a relaxation phase.

Basically this is just another way of stating a prime mover is acting as a stabilizer. When this happens a prime mover(s) has to sacrifice mobility and force production for stability, as the stabilizers have for some reason (injury, postural problems, etc), have become ineffective at offering authentic stability.

Doing planks, side planks, pallof presses, etc with someone with a high threshold strategy may very well only feed this dysfunction. This made me re-think some of my core training with some of my athletes and clients.

Just something to think about

Stay Strong,

Friday, October 14, 2011

SFMA Level 1

Only getting around to putting this up now!

Sent last weekend in Eemnes, Holland at the SFMA Level with Kyle Kiesel and Gray Cook.

I went over with Strength coach Barry Solan, and NMT's John Shevlin and Paddy Morrison.

It was a great weekend of learning. Gary came out with a few gems over the weekend.

One thing that has stuck with me that Gray kept saying was:

"Its not just about aciviting some muscles, but its also about inhibiting others".

Kyle got into what a "High Threshold strategy" is, and how it can be detrimental to performance and function.

Overall it was a great weekend of learning. I am looking forward to doing SFMA level 2 next year.

Stay Strong,