• Workout

    Glute and Hamstring Training – Warmup

    Recently on my Facebook page I linked to an article about Posterior Chain training. That’s a fancy phrase that powerlifters use to describe the lower back, glutes, and hamstrings. These are basically the “pulling” muscles if you lay flat on the floor on your front and pull your knees off the ground and up behind you. I mentioned that I normally trained these muscles hard, as they were majorly involved in mountaineering. Ryan of Climbingreport.com asked me for my opinions about why it was important, and while I gave a short answer on Facebook, I have a little more here. When walking uphill you normally place your foot out in…

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  • Exercise

    One-Leg Partial Squat to Bench

    I do like to work my legs. They’re one of my favorite bodyparts to train, respond well, and recover quickly. Perhaps that’s because I do a lot of “pre-hab” work. This is a variation of a one-leg squat that’s fairly simple for most people to do. I’m using an adjustable box squat bench, but just about anything you have, like a chair, box, bench, toybox, entertainment center or whatever, can be made to work. Stand beside the box with your weighted food parallel to the side of the box or bench, lift your unweighted leg to bend the knee, and very slowly and carefully lower your knee to the bench,…

  • Exercise

    Band Sissy Squats

    In my previous Blast Strap Sissy Squat article I showed a variation of the Sissy Squat supported by straps hung from a power rack. Today I’ll show a variation using a large rubber band. You can get these online from a variety of places, my personal favorite being EliteFTS. In this variation you’re much less stable, and don’t break (fold) at the hips. This puts more of the force directly on the quads, but for some people the stress on the knee might not be acceptable, so be cautious – go slow till you know. I had previously experimented with a few sizes of bands, to roughly negate my weight…

  • Exercise

    Blast Strap Sissy Squats

    Looking for a reasonably safe bodyweight style exercise for your quads and legs? The Blast Strap Sissy Squat is a great option for you to explore. I have done Sissy Squats using a number of different hand-holds, from doorways to bars to railings, but none of them gave me the full range of motion and focused the movement on the quads like the Blast Straps have (and as of this writing they’re on an awesome sale). I hooked my straps to the top of my power rack, and there’s enough other weight on the rack that it doesn’t slide or tip when I use them. For those of you who…

  • Exercise

    Seated Calf Raise Machine

    This video shows me doing one of the most common calf training exercises, the seated calf raise. I normally do sets of 25 at 85 pounds on the arm. I’ve never checked the amount of leverage, but the weights are at the end of the arm, with your knees about the middle of the arm, so if you just do the math that way, it’s about a 5/8 mechanical disadvantage, but the weights swing about a pivot point that your butt sits around, so not sure if that helps or hurts? I’d have to use some type of scale to measure. Anyway, physics aside, I like to push fast on…

  • Exercise

    Glute Kicks with Bands from Power Rack

    Your Glutes are a big powerful muscle group, and are essential for a great many training movements, including squats and deadlifts. For mountaineering they come into play stepping up and hiking up. Kicking steps, pushing up in ice climbing or rock climbing, and even trail running all utilize the glutes. For other sports, like skating and gymnastics, the jumping and sprinting sports too, strong glutes are important. Many who participate in these sports have obvious glute development. The Glute Kick is one way to work your glutes, but since your motion is so large, and the weight is being moved from your ankle, way out with very little leverage advantage,…

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