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S&C UnderGround >> Bodyweight Squats for high reps=worthless??


8/1/12 4:42 AM
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Leigh
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Interesting progression. I think squatting is ultimately more effective but that seems like a reasonable alternative for someone not competing in a strength sport
8/1/12 7:48 AM
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Adventure Runner
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"If you don't mind me asking, where did you get this progression? And what's a deck squat?"

CDarwin posted the deck squat. The single leg squat should be done in deck squat fashion as well.

I got it from the Gymnastic Bodies book or trainers. It's tough to mentally keep track of what I learned in the book, on that forum, and in person. If you've never heard of the book, go over to gymnasticbodies.com and check it out. The forum is almost a necessary compliment to it because the book is a little too light on exactly how/when to progress, how to properly prepare your body for the stress (wrists, elbows, and shoulders especially), and how to put together a proper training program.

I've started focusing more on my climbing, so I've switched to doing mainly gymnastic exercise. I had forgotten what absolute ass kickers even 3 reps of bodyweight exercises can be. Learning how to build a program and build yourself up is the hardest part. There isn't much info floating around.
8/1/12 8:09 AM
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Leigh
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I think I will give your progessions a go
8/1/12 10:49 AM
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Adventure Runner
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Cool, Leigh! Do yourself a favor and start from the very beginning of the progression. If you're like me, you think "hey, I can do weighted pistols, so that's where I'll start". I've done that a couple times, and it usually screws me in the end. The progressions are made to prep your body for later stages and buffer it against injury. While this isn't as much a factor with these squats as it is for say a straddle l-sit progression, I think it's still important.

Start with deck squats (I'm sure you can get 15 reps) and then add a tall box. If you can get 15 reps, then move on to jumping over the box, etc. Don't skip steps. :)

Once you start getting good at the jump portions of these, then come fun "bounding" drills like senders. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTUn2-sF3Hw
8/1/12 10:52 AM
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Adventure Runner
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Oh, and they aren't my progressions. Those are from Christopher Sommer.
8/1/12 10:57 AM
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Leigh
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Edited: 08/01/12 10:57 AM
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Ok cool. I will do that. How do you do weighted deck squats? Hold a plate?
8/1/12 11:20 AM
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Adventure Runner
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Holding a weight plate or dumbbell in each hand is an option. I have 40 lbs X-vest that I also use since I can load 20 lbs in the front of it, which doesn't interfere with the movement. It just rides a little funny.
8/1/12 12:14 PM
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Taku
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 For me the goal is to train harder not longer. If using bodyweight exercises I find ways to make them harder so I do not need to keep adding reps / sets etc.

One way to do this is to add static pause reps, and or combine static pause reps with slower movements.

Try bodyweight exercises (Squats - Pushups - etc) and take 10 seconds to lower and 10 seconds to raise.

Changes things up considerably.

Another method is in how one sequmces the exercises. The order, tempo etc will really have an impact on the outcome.

Give this a try and let me know how many you can do.

TAKU

P.S. if adding the pause, try a 5-10 sec pause in the mid range of any movement.
8/2/12 9:33 AM
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vermonter
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I'm digging adventure runner's posts. Thanks for that progression brother, i've been looking for ideas of stuff to do at home and this one actually sounds fun... Just need a good box, which i currently do not have.

I've been meaning to get one though...
8/2/12 11:18 AM
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Leigh
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Make one
8/2/12 2:52 PM
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6mildollarman
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Good stuff regarding progression, Adventure Runner! I've been doing deck squats (pistol style) and didn't know they were called deck squats. Gonna try the box jump progressions. Phone Post
8/3/12 5:56 AM
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Kimbos Bread
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Tttt Phone Post
8/3/12 2:38 PM
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PoundforPound
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Doing tons of bodyweight squats gives you the strength endurance to fight for long periods of time. That's why all the old wrestling traditions seem to have included the practice.
8/3/12 2:56 PM
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Adventure Runner
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Glad you liked the progression, guys. If you like that, you may really enjoy the book for the progressions. Like I said, there is A LOT left out of the book in terms of progression and programming, but I'd be happy to share what I have picked up along the way with anybody interested.

To me, gymnastics training is very similar to olympic lift training. There is a huge strength component. You can't just snatch 225 lbs without great levels of strength. That said, there is a huge technique component as well. People can argue until they are blue in the face if the time spent learning the technique is worth the benefits gained from performing the movement. For my goals, it definitely is. Just last night I was on a major overhanging route in the rock gym which was basically climbing along the ceiling. I lost my foothold, and the only thing that allowed me to regain it was the ability to do front lever pulls (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwCv1Yjb8MI).

A lot of people see the planche or gymnastics stuff and jump right into progressions for that movement. What isn't said is that there are preparatory steps you need to take prior to starting the progressions. Want to start the planche progressions? You should be able to hit a 60-second l-sit prior. Want to hit a back lever? If you can't do a 60 second german hang, don't even start trying. Etc etc. Unlike weight training, there really isn't much said about gymnastics training, so people are still very foggy on it.
8/3/12 3:57 PM
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ArthurKnoqOut
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 I freaking love gymnastic progressions...my two cents AA! 
8/3/12 8:27 PM
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CWH
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I strength train with weights twice a week and spend one full day a week on nothing but body-weight.

I box squat 350lbs and I can perform perfectly balanced one-legged pistol squats.

I can honestly say that I feel more worked out and more sore afterward from the body-weight training than anything else.

Gravity has a funny way of making sure that your body IS just the right amount of resistance that you need.

8/5/12 6:30 AM
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aritwo
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Taku -  For me the goal is to train harder not longer. If using bodyweight exercises I find ways to make them harder so I do not need to keep adding reps / sets etc.

One way to do this is to add static pause reps, and or combine static pause reps with slower movements.

Try bodyweight exercises (Squats - Pushups - etc) and take 10 seconds to lower and 10 seconds to raise.

Changes things up considerably.

Another method is in how one sequmces the exercises. The order, tempo etc will really have an impact on the outcome.

Give this a try and let me know how many you can do.

TAKU

P.S. if adding the pause, try a 5-10 sec pause in the mid range of any movement.


+1 for pause reps

i only do BW exercises as study breaks and i find doing pause reps much better than high number of bw reps
8/5/12 9:19 AM
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ArthurKnoqOut
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 oh yeah for sure. My buddy Eugene (whose convo about kettlebells I posted in that thread) had me on a strength block where one of the days he called "static dynamic" called for an upper body push + pull and a lower body series with a 5-10 second hold for as many reps as possible per 3 minute set

I thought I could do it with pull ups...FAIL....so I did ring dips for push and rows for pull

basically do one row, lower half way down and hold 5-10 seconds (week 1 5, week 2, 6, week 3 8 week 4 10 seconds) and then repeat until 3 minutes are up...boatloads of lactic acid and by product build up REALLY quick

back to the squats...try that with squats lol lower all the way, come half way up (say thigh parallel to the ground and hold) MAJOR by product build up...probably even more of an "after burn"/DOMS than doing those 200 bodyweight squats (Which I've done :)


8/5/12 11:35 AM
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Adventure Runner
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" I freaking love gymnastic progressions...my two cents AA! "

Haha! I hear you. Unfortunately, I'd feel bad giving away a lot of the progressions since they are in Sommer's book. I feel like they are proprietary material since that's where I learned a lot of them. I'd be happy to go into detail about the stuff I've learned elsewhere and that is freely available on the web.

Take the Steady State Cycle. It's a way to train the progressions that is very effective. Try to do a max hold on wherever you are in a progression. If it doesn't equal 60 seconds, then how you'd program it is to divide that number in half and do sets until you reach 60 seconds. Like say your max german hang is 30 seconds. That'd make you workouts for the german hang be 4 sets of 15 seconds. You should only rest 30-45 seconds between each set. Do this without any change for 4-8 weeks and then retest your max hold and adjust sets/time accordingly. This is A LOT more effective than simply trying to hold the position for longer and longer doing max holds every workout.

Then we have the basic strength positions themselves. A lot of people are enamored with the planche. It does look cool as hell after all. However they don't do the proper prep work leading up to it. The best base positions are the handstand, l-sit, and back lever. When you can do each of these well, planche progressions will go a lot quicker because you'll have built a good base in core strength. Until these are mastered, keep your planche work limited to frog stands and advanced frog stands (frog stands with straight arms). Maybe tuck planche depending on how strong you are. Now as far as back lever training goes, you should be able to do a 60 second german hang before starting in on back lever work. It's possible to nail a back lever without doing the initial progressions, but the progressions slowly and systematically build strength in key areas of your body buffering it against injury. It's a marathon; not a sprint.

Speaking of buffering against injury, injuries to the wrist, elbow, and shoulder are common enough where you should do proper preparation prior to every workout. Every single day, on top of static stretching, dynamic stretching, and joint ROM work (shoulder circles, hip circles, etc), I do gymnastics oriented prep work. Things like:

This wrist/elbow series: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-hlWgH3_0NU&feature=player_embedded

This gymnastics oriented wrist/elbow/shoulder series: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c2w1PeSR8G4&feature=player_embedded

Although to the above video, I also do dorsal pushups (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSkF3CCExnY) and gymnastics bridge pushups. These are gymnasts of all ages and skill levels in the video, so form isn't always spot on. For instance, the wrist pushups should look like: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIeL0AYygiY

Then you have the "basic" strength routine which is done prior to any other strength, skill, or tumbling work. The basic program looks like:

* Planche position plank x60 sec
* Rev plank x60 sec
* Arch hold (superman) x60 sec
* Hollow hold x60 sec
* Support progression (parallel bars to rings) x60 sec
* Hang support prog (high bar to ring variations) x 60 sec
* Handstand x60 sec
* Inverted hang prog x 60 sec
* L-sit prog x 60 sec

The end product should be you rifling through this in about 10 minutes as a warmup. At first and when you start making your way through the progressions, it will take a lot longer and be a lot more taxing than a simple warmup. Like the basic strength positions, you can use the steady state cycle if you can't do one of these for the full 60 seconds. For the supports, I don't like to move onto the next progression until I'm pretty solid. Take the parallel bar support. The first support position is basically like being at the top of a dip with a straight body. Most strong people will have no problem getting 60 seconds on that, however it may get shaky past 30-40 seconds. I don't like to move on until that's solid and not a struggle at all. The next step would be on parallel bars with arms bent similar to the bottom position of a dip.

That's kind of a start anyway. I don't want waste my time writing too much if it doesn't interest anybody. ;)
8/5/12 11:45 AM
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Adventure Runner
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^ Btw, there is a lot more joint preparation work. For shoulders you have the wall extensions (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6V2Exzb324&feature=player_embedded), weighted shoulder flex pulls (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqJhILs19mY), shoulder dislocations (overhand and underhand), lat flyes (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rv51x8TEF3o).

Things like wall extensions and dislocations I do every training day. Weighted shoulder flex pulls and lat flyes are done on dedicated stretching/prehab days. I kind of look at the joint prehab/prep work as a workout in and of itself. At first, it is taxing. It is time consuming too though. I skipped a lot of it or even all of it my first forays into the gymnastics world and paid for it. Now that I've incorporated it and will skip workouts for the prehab/prep stuff if time is short, I feel a lot healthier and stronger.
8/6/12 3:36 AM
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nottheface
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for later. Always interested in learning more about bw exercises. I travel so much for my job that anything I can do in a hotel room is great.
8/6/12 8:19 AM
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1st Round Armbar
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I've been doing tabata interval jump squats.

working well for me, I do 2 x 4 minute rounds with a minute rest in between.
Jump as high as I can and a slight static pause at 90degrees on the way down.

great workout I think, my legs are much stronger and more explosive now, I had skinny legs to start with though which may affect results

any one tried something like this?
any thoughts? Phone Post
8/6/12 8:48 AM
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Leigh
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My thoughts are that jumps for time will not be as effective as squatting for building leg strength Phone Post
8/6/12 9:22 AM
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ArthurKnoqOut
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 AR great write up. couldn't put it better myself as another gymnastic bodies geek haha

one thing that I found progressing from the frog to the advanced frog was doing push ups with my palms by abdomen. I'd get into the position by arching my back like I would a hindu push up but then glide forward (like upward facing dog in a yoga practice) and end up with the palms by my hips. makes the push ups 10X harder and definitely helps the arm strength needed for the straight-arms advanced frog...


great job breaking down the static holds and their times too :)
8/6/12 11:27 AM
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Adventure Runner
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Good tip, AKO. Luckily I never had much of a problem going from frog stand to advanced frog stand. Now kipping muscle ups to non-kipping... Ouch.

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