Sunday, February 13, 2011

How To Transform Your Physique #90

Once again, I made a prediction and it came true. There is a thread on the GripBoard under the Strength and Power  sub-forum on one-arm dumbbell rowing.  Various videos are posted there of people performing the exercise.  Some of them have literally huge weights with the weights often exceeding 200lbs.  I watched the videos and just had to comment.  I tried to be diplomatic about it because I figured I would be accused of being....drum exercise cop.  I even mentioned it myself so people would not get all up in arms.  Remember, the EGO plays a big part in strength training. And, some tend to be very fragile. I got over this a long time ago both as an individual and realizing people aren't going to react in a positive manner in general when providing any feedback.  Here is the video that prompted me to give some feedback:

As you can see, there range-of-motion (ROM) is pretty small.  It's more of a shoulder hump than a row.  You should strive for a proper range of motion on every exercise and not just rows.  Shortening the range of motion is another method of what I call "false gains".  I have used this term in the past as long time Cyberpump! readers know.  People cut the ROM as they add weight.  Squats is one of the most abused for false gains.  A common abused term in macho land is Ass to the Grass (ATG).  In reality, most are FAR from ATG squats.  In fact, I've seen a LOT of lifters not even half squat a weight and they take credit for "parallel".

Here is a video with what I would consider ATG squat depth.  Keep in mind, the bouncing, etc. is not something I would recommend to anyone. I am just showing you the video for the depth of the squat:

Rows is another.  In the bench press, it's harder to do because everyone knows you "must" touch the chest.  What happens in the bench press is the bounce or hump up with the hips off the bench.  These are two techniques for "false gains" in the bench.  In curls some common technique of "false gains" are cutting the range of motion at the bottom, leaning back with the body and rocking (for machines), or just plain power cleaning the curls (dumbbell or barbell curls) instead of actually curling the weight in strict form.

I posted this video in response:

Just ignore that the guys have no shirts, etc. :) Watch the one guy do one-arm rows in the video.  I would consider this using much better form than the previous video. :)  Your back should be straight and neutral by the way.  Arching it per say is not necessary as the guy states. I also do not agree with the use of a belt or going for any big "stretch" in the bottom.  

When all is said and done, people are more likely to go for the lack of form and "false gains".  That is just a fact and I realize it.  But, that doesn't mean all is loss and I am going to stop providing the feedback such as what I did on the forum and writing this article!

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