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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 02-28-2004, 07:57 AM   #11
Ben Gimball
Departed Ben Gimball is offline
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Firstly, welcome to this discussion! Secondly, allow me to correct you: I was not "analyzing weightlifting." I was merely placing a basic definition on the term "power" in order to best answer a question asked by Kevin, the previous poster.

Yes, force makes momentum change. Force being how hard you push or pull on an object. Momentum relating more to how hard it is to stop an object from moving. A 300lb. Barbell flying through space at 10mph is much more difficult to stop than a 100lb. Barbell at the same speed. The 300lb. weight has more momentum, as true momentum is within an object, carried with the object. Force, on the other hand, is between objects.

Putting it another way: Momentum is like what the object has in its "back account". Force is like giving some of this momentum to another object every second they are in contact. It allows momentum to have direction Mathamatically, the force on an object is equal to the rate at which the objects's momentum changes. Therefore, force is the rate of change of momentum!

Let me now relate an important piece of knowledge based upon the above. In order for a trainee to achieve a large number of repetitions in the dead hang Pull-up he needs momentum on the way down as well as on the way! More on this and how to achieve it at a later date.

However, I agree with you, in that there are far more complexities occurring at the muscular level. We need to train strength endurance
fibers to be able to produce more under stressful conditions. A great deal of damage is caused to the muscle fiber cell from exercise. The walls of the cell become more permeable, and enzymes and proteins actually leak out of the cell! Conversely, substances leak into the cell as well, such as calcium, (usually there is more calcium outside the cell wall). This calcium activates a certain protein dissolving enzyme that actually attacks and destroys more of the cell membrane!

Fortunately, the damage is just the beginning of new muscle growth. In fact, new fiber is being made in the midst of all the "destruction." Muscle tissue then becomes even more resistant to future injury and repairs faster the next time that it is (trained) injured. One reason why those of us who have trained for 30 years will not get the same effect from a routine that a newcomer will. A new trainee can, in fact, do almost any routine and see at least some progress (as I have repeated).

Some trainees actually believe that you can avoid the above destruction of muscle fiber by using GTG. And they are correct, you can! Unfortuneately, you also avoid growth as well!
One of my many complaints regarding GTG is, simply put, when there is no damage there is no growth. When there is no growth there is no (less) progress, relative to new mucles fibers. Then again, GTG is based upon a ludicrous principal. (See my previous posts on this thread and the "Density" thread).

One set of max reps dead hang Pull-ups is a low skill, strength endurance event. Thus, it needs to be trained for in a certain manner that will foster growth in this specific area. There are some very important principals that need to be understood prior to embarking on any given program. Fully embracing the latest marketing hype will only delay a trainees progress, as it did my own, for many years. I did not begin to make serious progress (39 dead hang Chin-ups) until I reached my mid-forties!

However, as I have stated it is more important to train "smart" instead of "hard." The program that I have developed does this. I have not only tripled my own one set capacity in dead hang Pull-ups (as well as many other exercises), but I have doubled and tripled many other trainees one set max reps efforts as well. And have done
so in a relatively short period of time!

I honestly believe that I have not yet reached my own capacity relative to max reps in any of the exercises that I perform! I hope this does not sound like a particular course that I am selling as it is not! I am simply excited about the progress that I have gained and been able to share with my own trainees.

Thank you for the discourse!
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Old 02-28-2004, 08:19 AM   #12
Ben Gimball
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I do on occasion, "come off" as a pompous ***. Try to get beyond that if you are able. Do not allow my short comings to effect your potential for success!

At this point I am not getting through to you, and others I am sure. Perhaps this is an effort in futility. I appears that most of you have been brainwashed into believing that skill is a very important factor in the dead hang Pull-up. As I have stated, it is a factor, but less important than many other factors. And this skill can be obtained through normal practice.

What if all you had were perfect form? Nothing else! Would you be able to then accomplish 100 dead hang Pull-ups? What would be stopping you if skill is so important? Let us now turn this around. What if you had just a very basic skill, but unlimited strength endurance muscle fibers? Could you then do 100 reps? Yes! So, I ask you, which is more important? Which should be focused on? And the best part of all, you also develope all the skill you need while you are developing the most important parts of the equation!

Please, prior to posting back to me, I challenge you, or anyone for that matter, to trace back to its roots the origin of GTG. Find out where it began, why it began, and what it is based on. Also, find all of the information that supports the GTG theory, no hearsay is allowed.

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Old 02-28-2004, 09:53 AM   #13
Mike Yukish
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Ben, since I am just starting out on my road to 30+ pullups, I am open to being a guinea pig for any new program. I'll suspend any disbelief on my part, and follow what you offer, if you post it here. Seriously.

Bring it on, I'm ready!
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Old 02-28-2004, 10:16 AM   #14
Paul "The Viking"
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I beg to differ. You used the formula you stated, power is force times distance over time to conclude something about how to impart maximum power to a weight: "In short, you need to exert a greater force through a greater range of motion, in the shortest amount of time!" and you even did it again (though I don't understand your logic) in your follup post: "Let me now relate an important piece of knowledge based upon the above. In order for a trainee to achieve a large number of repetitions in the dead hang Pull-up he needs momentum on the way down as well as on the way!" You are drawing conclusions about exercise/weightlifting from the formulas! To my mind, that's a form of analysis.

Thanks for the extra description of force and momentum -- maybe it'll better help someone understand the two. But, just to let you know, force has nothing to do with momentum having a direction. Momentum does fine existing as a vector quantity on its own!

About the GTG stuff:

I have a feeling that you and a lot of the people on this board are talking past each other, without understanding where the other is coming from. Let me explain a little bit about the typical people on this board (I hope I'm right!)

1) Their number one goal related to exercise/nutrition is maximing fitness in a very broad/general sense, as described in the free Crossfit journal.

2) They follow the Workout of the Day (WOD) as their primary form of training (or something similar,) but may participate in one or more sports as well.

3) The WOD often includes pullups. It includes them in varying numbers of sets and repetitions and in varying combinations with other exercises and at varying levels of exhaustion during a workout. People usually see progress in pullups following the WOD alone.

4) Quite a number of people on this board are participating in the "pullup challenge" and have set a secondary goal of increasing max pullups.

5) No one wants to increase their max pullups at the expense of general fitness even if that means abandoning the most efficient method of increasing pullups. For example, increasing the strength of the lower body and hence the size of the leg muscles, is counterproductive to performing pullups, but is no small part of general fitness! No one would abandon leg work for increased pullup proficiency.

6) GTG is just one of the methods that people have suggested to increase the pullup workload in a way that doesn't conflit with the WOD or lead to overtraining. No one here, to my knowledge, has claimed that it is the best method for increasing pullup proficiency or that its the only method that people should use.

7) If someone (you?) suggested a routine for increasing pullups that works in conjunction with the WOD (or replaced the WOD while leading at least as effectively to broad fitness) that was more effective than other training methods, people would be very quick to abandon the old methods and switch to the new method.

We don't know where you're coming from! You've achieved an impressive amount of pullup ability. Are you a pullup-only specialist? (I doubt it - you also seem to be able to do a lot of pushups!) What are your general views on fitness? How do you train? Letting people know these things - or even a little more about yourself - will help move the discussion toward more productive things.

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Old 02-28-2004, 12:12 PM   #15
Larry Lindenman
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Paul, very well put, I second.
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Old 02-28-2004, 12:23 PM   #16
Ben Gimball
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Power = force x distance/time. No amount of debate on your part will change that! How this relates to an object flying through space is debatable, depending on a host of factors to numerous and insignificant to the movement at hand (Pull-ups) to matter.

As to your other seven points:

1. My number one goal is to maximize fitness as well! I like and respect how CrossFit defines fitness. In fact, that is one of the factors that drew me to this site.

2. I understand the concept of the WOD. I have no major problem with it.

3. A trainee would see "progress in Pull-ups following the WOD alone." Again, depending upon several factors, some Pull-up progress can be made by doing almost anything. That is one reason people get confused and become illogical: "Some Pull-up progress can be made by doing this program (fill in the inferior program of choice GTG-Density-Marine Training etc.), therefore if I continue to do this program I will make great Pull-up progress." One does not necessarily mean the other. My main point is that there is an optimum way to train for high reps and it is not the way most here train.

4. I am aware that there is a "Pull-up challenge" underway. And in a few weeks or months I think it will be shown that many of the goals set by the trainees involved are far to ambitious based upon the training that they are using in their attempts.

5. You make a very good point here! I agree completely with you. No one should have to give up total body conditioning, in favor of increasing their Pull-up reps. There are many, many factors involved in achieving dead hang Pull-up mastery. With my system there is not one thing that will be sacrificed, relative to total fitness, in order to gain many reps in your Pull-up performance. On the contrary, our bodies seek balance-Yet, another reason that CrossFit is a fine "total" system!

I am 45 (soon to be 46) years old and able to press two 75lb. dumbbells over my head, in perfect form, for 10 repetitions. Able to full squat my body weight (182lbs), in the form of a Barbell across my shoulders/back, for 50 consecutive reps. Full Squat 365lbs. for one rep. I am also capable of running a quarter mile in :65. I do not mention these feats to brag. I understand that there are others who can better these performances by a wide margin. I only point it out as a means to show that my fitness is in balance. I am not a "Johnny one note"-although one of my specialties is Pull-ups!

6. I disagree with you on this point. I think there is quite a lot of attention paid to GTG. And as far as increasing your one rep max Pull-up performance it is one of, if not the least effective method! And this is what has caused me the most angst while visiting this forum. No one has to "make a claim that it is the best method of training" if they are, in fact, preaching it's concept over and over again. I am aware that there are other systems that are talked about on this forum. However, which of these has been discussed more than GTG? By virtue of its high profile the least effective system has become the most popular. Why does anyone follow this system? Can you answer that question?

7. I disagree once again. People are never "quick to abandon old methods". What they are quick to do is defend their turf and cling to habits, whether they are effective or not! I have been attacked and ridiculed on this board for even suggesting that GTG was inferior. Those same people are now stating-"Just give us something in it's place." (Then we will really come after you!)

There are three levels of attack: The first points out that it is crazy for me to attack current methodologies: "How dare you claim our way is not the best you troll." The second points to the fact that I have offered nothing in its place: "You sit there and claim our way is not the best, yet you give us nothing, you fake." The third form has not yet taken place, but will point to the fact that my methods are inferior and there will be so many good "reasons": "I have looked over your methods and they make no sense you imbecile." As one of your stars has already put it: "Don't let the door hit you on the way out."

I have already experienced the first two reactions. You now want me to go for the third as well. As I have posted on another thread: " If this was a zero sum gain, I would not mind (to much). However, I have not the time or desire to endure, first additional ridicule and then the countless posts that I would have to write in my own defense in order to end up where I began, which was reading additional attacks!

Forums are strange places-"Cliqueish" in nature. They seem like a good place to exchange ideas, but heaven help the new arrival who strays to far from what the "group think" is. I made that error coming in, should have known better, I didn't! I think I lack a certain social awareness that is innate in most people. We now have a bad combination (for me at least). A group of people who know and trust each other, train a certain way relative to Pull-ups, and an odd ball who dares to question the status quo.

I think my best bet is to drop off the forum and comeback under a new name. My first words should be something in the order of: "Hi guys, boy that GTG is a great system, I am up to 6 Pull-ups in a row." Yes, that seems safe enough. I like it.

I do appreciate your posts. You are a very bright individual!
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Old 02-28-2004, 12:51 PM   #17
Kevin Roddy
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Forgive me for interjecting, but... all we really want you to do is to post your method. If you don't, you're not really contributing to the board.

We all saw the dissent that occurred between you and Barry, but that was a far cry from being "Attacked and ridiculed" by anyone.

Anyway, it's in the past, blah blah blah, no one cares anymore. This is a good discussion going here, and a lot of people are really itching to see this routine of yours. :-)

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Old 02-28-2004, 01:26 PM   #18
Kris Freeman
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Yeah, routine. Not avoiding the actual subject.
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Old 02-28-2004, 01:57 PM   #19
Paul "The Viking"
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As to Power:

The precise definition of power uses calculus. My regrets if you do not follow it!

Power equals the time rate of change of Work:

P = dW/dt (where dW/dt is the derivative of work with respect to time)

Work, on the other hand is defined in terms of an "infinitessimal":

dW = F dot dr (where dW is the infinitessimal work performed by the force F exerted on an object that moves a distance dr. the "dot" means that only the portion of the force in the direction of the displacement counts)

Combining those two equations gives:

P = dW/dt = F dot dr/dt

this equation tells us the instantaneous power delivered to an object in an infinitessimal time dt, over an infinitessimal displacement dr by a force F.

Yes, this is "power is equal to force times distance over time" but its only true for _instantaneous_ power and for distances and times that are infinitessimally small! We can, to make this look easier (but remembering that this is only the instantaneous power!) replace the quantity dr/dt with the instantaneous velocity, v:

P = F dot v (remember, this is still for instantaneous power and uses the instantaneous forces and velocities!)

To find the average power that is delivered over a finite time, T, we have to integrate that equation:

P_ave(from t=0 to t=T) = Integral of F dot v dt, with the limits of the integral being 0 to T

OK, at this point, you need to know the value of F and the value of v for every single point between 0 and T. You can't do the integral otherwise. However, there is one case where the integral becomes much easier! If the force is constant over the entire timespan from 0 to T, and it is exactly in the direction of the motion, then you can actually pull out the F from the integral and get rid of the dot product:

P_ave (0 to T) = F_constant Integral v dt (limits t=0, t=T)

In this case, that integral over v actually will give you the average velocity over that timeframe - which is the total displacement (distance) over the total time (T) The formula then becomes:

P_ave = F * distance/time ----- the formula you were quoting. Notice what has to be true in order for this equation to hold:

The force has to remain constant over the time interval and the force has to be precisely in the direction of the motion. The power calculated from it is the average power in that time interval and does not reflect the power that is being delivered at any particular moment during that time interval.

I know you said no amount of debate would change that, but what I'm recounting here are the precise mathematical definition of the physical quantities, and a precise mathematical derivation of the formula you used from that. You should be able to find this in every elementary, calclulus based physics textbook in your library. Regrettably, non calculus based physics textbooks sometimes doing a poor job of explaining the limitations of the equations presented! These limitations become very important when you look at things like weightlifting, where the forces exerted by the lifter are nowhere near constant over the duration of the lift!

As to the other stuff, I'm very sorry that you've had a bad experience at this board. I've personally found it to be very useful and found the people to be very friendly. One thing that I will point out, though, check out your own posts again and you might realize that you've actually been using the third argument that you mention. Just something I noticed!

Good luck in your fitness endeavors and I hope that you get that 40th pullup soon!

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Old 02-28-2004, 02:40 PM   #20
Paul "The Viking"
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I should also point out that you can get the formula Power = Force times distance over time in the case where the velocity remains constant over the interval, the force is the average force and is in the direction of the motion, and the power, once again, is the average power. Again, a set of circumstances that don't usually hold true in weightlifting.

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