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Chris Duffin is a world-renowned strength coach and record-holding powerlifter with over 2 decades of experience in strength sports. His methods are used and taught across the world from weight-rooms to university classrooms. He is the co-founder and CEO of Kabuki Strength, an organization devoted to creating innovative tools, methods, and education for the community. Please note that this article contains material from our subscription-based movement portal - Kabuki.MS - and is being provided to you free-of-charge. If you want to support the production of further content like this, we encourage you to subscribe to KMS. Use coupon code "onemonthfree" to get your first month's subscription for free.Lets start with what this article is not. It is not a top 5 exercises to develop great looking delts with lateral, front, and rear delt raises to develop each of the heads. Don’t worry you will develop some amazing looking delts in the process as that also happens to be the output of strong healthy shoulders.[caption id="attachment_28328" align="alignleft" width="443"] The Author's Shoulders[/caption]It is a piece to help you develop strong, healthy, and powerful shoulders that can deliver tremendous power while reducing risk of injury in such a complex joint. This top 5 is for developing functional strength movements for the shoulders. Yes, I said the dreaded word ‘functional’. But I’m not talking namby-pamby soda can exercises, I’m talking real movements that develop strength while helping improve the operating mechanics of the shoulders. If you’re not familiar with my background or approach I am certainly a coach and athlete interested in real-world results and believe that stronger is better, so you won’t find remedial PT exercises promoted by me. While I am best known as coach and movement specialist these days, I’ve been (or am depending on your outlook) one of the best pure strength athletes...

It has now been 12 and eighteen months respectively since I had hemicap surgery on my left and right shoulders. Performed by Dr. Anthony Miniaci at the Cleveland Clinic the shoulder surgeries have performed better than I had hoped. In reviewing the introductory article I wrote in June of 2016 my goal then was to rehab the right shoulder ahead of the October surgery on the left and to get back on the platform by the spring of 2017. I can report now that the second surgery was equally successful as was the follow up rehab work led by PT’s Jim Cavin (right) and Jason Vila (left) at North Lake Physical therapy who pushed me to the limit. It was a long frustrating road as I wanted the pain to subside sooner than it did. However, by using our Duffalo and Transformer Bars, I was able to train the squat well ahead of regaining the shoulder range of motion necessary to get my myself under a straight bar and the Duffalo bar allowed me to start benching sooner than expected. The proprietary bends in the Duffalo Bar force the shoulders into a more centrated position and enabled me to initially bench to a 3 board without pain which I slowly worked it down to my chest over a two month period. Not only did I achieve my goal of competing by the spring of 2017 but at the USPA Masters Cup  in Houston in May I set a new WR in the squat and total and I was just 11 pounds short of the Bench WR-just 7 months after my second surgery!I have been utilizing the ShouldeRok this past summer which has continued to open up my shoulder ROM. Under the watchful eye of our in house chiropractor, Franchesca Vermillion,...

Written by Joseph Sullivan, a Kabuki Strength sponsored athlete and one of the top 220 powerlifters in the world. Along with this piece we have released a "Sully Strong" special edition shirt which can be purchased on our store or via the links below.Death and darkness. The only things we are guaranteed or entitled to out of life. You might view that as cynical, but I view it as empowering! To accept the fact that we are nothing in the grand scheme of things, lends so much power to every one of our decisions and passions in this life because it is our ONLY life. So you may as well stand for something and let a passion consume you because by accepting the fact that we are nothing except a blink in the grand scheme of time, means we must find substance in our existence because that is all we can attach ourselves to.Powerlifting is an ego driven endeavor but by detaching yourself from your ego, and by considering your success and your forward progress as nothing but an INEVITABLY you may move past the fear, the distraught, and the failure of a missed lift. If you know what you are capable of and have shown that in the completion of your training with machine like precision, you know that whatever you call for on a third attempt WILL be there. It's simply an inevitability that you move the weight.I have been competing in powerlifting for 10 years now. I have always expected great things from myself, and held myself to a high standard. I hit my first "elite" total at 1725lbs at 198lbs in 2015. I took NO time off between then and now, but had many setbacks along the way. I will save you a list but no shortage...

Ryan Kennelly  is an American powerlifter who specializes in the bench press. He currently holds the World Powerlifting Organization (WPO) and has held the all-time world record in the assisted (geared) bench press with a lift of 1075.0 lbs (487.6 kg) from November 2008 until April 2013. This world record is classified as an equipped world record, meaning the lift is performed with the aid of a bench shirt. Kennelly has also bench pressed an unequipped 650.0 lbs (294.8 kg) in competition.THE KENNELLY PRESS - check out this bench variation used by the Bench Monster himself Ryan Kennelly @ryankennelly1075 as he makes his huge comeback. Read about this movement in Kennelly's own words at www.kabukistrength.com ••••• Link in profile. ••••• Thanks for supporting Kabuki Strength and helping make the world a better place through strength! ••••• #kabukistrength #kabukistrengthlab #kabukimovementsystems @kabukistrengthlab @mad_scientist_duffin www.kabukistrength.com www.kabuki.ms A video posted by Kabuki Strength (@kabukistrengthlab) on Aug 29, 2016 at 11:56am PDTThe Kennelly press is a bench press assistance exercise performed with the Duffalo bar with either bands,chains, or straight weight.  The grip employed is pinky on ring, or competition grip. Sets used for this exercise are 2 sets of 8 at 55%-70% of our 1-RM on our speed benching days, or 5 sets of 5 at 70%-80% of our 1-RM performed after our max effort movement on max effort day, or heavy day.. This assistance exercise is performed 2 weeks in a row with the desired resistance of your choice and then rotated back in 2 weeks after again, for example 2 weeks on, 2 weeks off,.Always remember to rotate the resistance used each time to avoid accommodation also. The bands I specifically used for this exercise are mini bands doubled, the max amount of...

Active Mobilization and Re-Patterning To Improve Overhead Position and Shoulder MechanicsIn this video Chris Duffin and Brad Cox from Acumobility are at Titan Barbell in Medford, MA working on Strongman Semaj.  Semaj had sustained a right shoulder injury that has been negatively impacting his overhead mobility. During assessments, we found that he has poor internal rotation of the shoulder with limited overhead range of motion and restricted trap and pec muscles. Our goal is to provide some corrective strategies to improve end range of motion and stability in the shoulder girdle. We accomplish this through the following progression:Active Mobilization of the ShoulderUsing our unique Vice Technique we start by placing an Acumobility Ball on a trigger point in the external rotators (i.e. back of shoulder) while at the same time applying compression from the opposite side in the subscap and lat muscles with the BoomStick. Complete 5 to 8 reps of internal and external rotation.Applying the same Vice Technique we work both rhomboid and pec muscles. Place an Acumobility Ball on a trigger point at the top of the rhomboids, apply pressure using the BoomStick to a restricted area in the pec, and go through a press up motion at 45 degree angle from the body. Find two restricted areas in the pec and complete 5-8 press ups in each area.An alternative method to release the pec muscle while preventing trap over recruitment is to use a banded distraction technique. Get into a tall kneeling position, place a band over the top of the shoulder and anchor it under the rack. Place an Acumobility ball in a trigger point in the pec muscle, press into the ball while going through internal and external rotation of the shoulder.Stability Re-Patterning:To cement in the mobility work that we just...

Taking your recovery to the next step will help take your performance to the next level. For more information check out my website tmnutrition.net for more articles, ebooks, and online training/nutrition plans.Also check out the Kabuki Strength Store for cutting edge equipment that will help push you to edge of human performance. There are so many diets out there now its hard to decipher which one works and which one will bring you the best results. The easy answer is, the diet you can stay on the longest and stick to is the one that works best. Now there are a few principals that should be applied to all diets that will make them more optimal and as long as you can master those things you can make any diet match your gals. So popular diets like Paleo, IIFYM, Low Carb Diets, Carb Backloading, etc… they can all work if it’s what you enjoy and you follow the guidelines below to make them fit your goals. The key is knowing how to implement them and understand why these things are important for success. So with this article I will discuss some of the downfalls I see in all the top diets out there and how you can slightly adjust them to help you reach your goals. Paleo First up is the Paleo diet, this is the biggest diet in the crossfit community and for good reason. It promotes eating whole foods, nothing really processed. Puts a strong emphasis on food quality like grass fed beef, veggies, and NOT pop tarts. This diet was brought along more so to help combat certain diseases that pop up with high amount of processed carbohydrates and other things like roots, tubers, and legumes. Some of these foods will cause severe issues and carbohydrates in and of themselves are...

I constantly get the question about why I do touch and go deadlifts when dead stop deadlifts are better.  First lets discuss the difference between the two lifts.  The dead stop deadlift is when doing deadlift reps the full weight of the bar is released onto the floor.  With the touch-n-go deadlift the weight only touches the floor without the full weight of the bar being unloaded onto the floor before the next rep is started.First lets be clear, the dead stop deadlift is not by nature better than a touch and go deadlift.  At least if you don’t define what your use of the deadlift training session is for.  Both styles of deadlifts have distinct benefits and BOTH are better for specific goals.  Tony and I discuss the correct application of both approaches based on your goals and desired training outcome is.  For the most part the dead stop deadlift is better for most athletes needs.  It is a great development tool for refining your deadlift skill so that you can increase your maximal deadlift.  That does not however negate the value of the touch-n-go pull for specific uses.Unfortunately most people I have observed complete the dead stop deadlift in an improper fashion.  If the dead stop deadlift is not performed correctly it will not only not assist with proper motor pattern development, it will significantly increase the risk of injury.  Tony and I cover the simple but critical step to avoid this common mistake and provide a demonstration as well....

In preparing for a powerlifting meet I have seen lots of overthinking, overworking, and overstressing when it comes to people figuring out how to setup their training cycle to perform the best on competition day. Even those who are not powerlifters should get something from the following article by seeing an extremely simple, yet extremely effective method for maximizing performance for a specific day. Although the system in this article is incredibly simple to put into place, it also happens to work like a charm every time. I call it the 3, 2, 1, 0 Meet Countdown.

3210 countdown

Both powerlifting and strongman often offer 18-24hr weigh-ins prior to the start of the meet. This creates an opportunity for you to plan and manage your weight class with some different objectives that can’t be realized than when faced with a 2hr weigh-in. You may wonder why would one put off cutting weight to the last minute, instead of having the discipline to slowly diet down to the desired weight class. The answer is simple: performance. Properly managing your weight ABOVE your weight class can actually improve your performance on meet day. In this short piece I’ll detail the approach I take with lifters I coach.In the slowly-dieting-down-to-a weight-class approach there are some negatives that come into play. Let’s take an athlete that’s 10-12lbs over their weight class. At two months out from competition this lifter will begin diet restrictions and slowly get down to their weight class for the meet. Unfortunately this will leave you training at a weight higher than you will be on meet day for majority of your training cycle. Of particular importance is the last 1-4 weeks when you’re finally getting close to your weight class, which also intersects with the timing for deloading and handling submaximal weights. These two factors combined give you a false sense of strength and don’t allow you to learn the impact of leverage changes due to the weight loss.   During the heavy training completed at one month out from competition you’re still quite a bit heavier than you will be on meet day. Additionally, as you actually get close to target weight in the last few weeks, you’re not handling heavy lifts anymore and don’t learn the balance and leverage changes at your meet day bodyweight. This approach may lead to underperforming or setting expectations too high.Another important aspect...