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By Chris DuffinIf you watch my weekly video’s you have likely seen my hanging by one hand from a pull-up bar and asked “why”.  Its' not because I'm hoping someone will toss a banana at me, although with my current diet I would probably be quiet happy about that.  As with most things I do there is a reason and it may be something of relevance to you as well.In seeking to overcome some long standing elbow issues that were beginning to significantly impact my deadlift I was referred to Ido Portal.  Ido has some interesting concepts worth exploring.  One of which is hanging.  This is primarily done for shoulder health, which in my case with the use of the ShouldeRök™ is not necessary.However the tractioning on the elbow from both directions was worth exploring.  I had already been doing static holds with a barbell for the last couple years to work on my grip strength and desensitize my thumb for the hook grip.  With that in mind I wasn’t expecting much from the hangs and was surprised at the difference I found.  In this case I began doing full passive hangs letting everything relax and hang.  Doing so I found that even the grip became more challenging than when just holding on in an active movement such as a pull-up.  With the passive hang everything is stretched from lats, scap, tricpes, biceps, and all the muscle of the lower arm and fingers.I quickly transitioned from doing static holds to doing passive hangs and within a month had switched to one arm hangs.  It wasn’t until the single arm hangs that I began really feeling a difference in my arm.  The extra force as well as the dynamics of the hang put a lot more force and traction on my...

[wpdevart_youtube width="640" height="385" autoplay="0" theme="dark" loop_video="0" enable_fullscreen="1" show_related="1" show_popup="0" thumb_popup_width="213" thumb_popup_height="128" show_title="1" show_youtube_icon="1" show_annotations="1" show_progress_bar_color="red" autohide_parameters="1" set_initial_volume="false" initial_volume="100" disable_keyboard="0"]BQVcrbAhPcA[/wpdevart_youtube] FORETHOUGHTSMy initial goal was to come in and make a run at a 2100+ total for the All-Time record but my primary goal was to win the meet.  I wasn’t planning on making a run for my 2204 (10kg) total at this meet yet as I had not been able to train the deadlift heavy.  This was due to a recent elbow surgery and some bicep tearing when I tried to ramp up the weights to early at 6 weeks out form the meet.  So the last 6 weeks I was letting my bicep and arm fully heal and was hoping on still getting a decent enough pull in for at least the All-time record.It began as a challenging week.  With being unable to sleep on the 20hr flight to Sydney then arriving and getting settled in I ended up going 2.5 days without sleep.  After one fuller, but still incomplete, night of sleep I started my water cut to the 220lb class.  Interestingly I was stuck in a hard place with making this cut.  If I came up a 1lb short I wouldn’t be weighing in at 221 for the meet as the 242lb class was scheduled for the following day so it would leave me having to cut 2 days in a row or just recomping and competing in the 275’s.  So missing by even .2lbs would essentially move me up two weight classes and change the day I competed, and require me to change my flight plans.WEIGHT CUTI ended up having put some weight on this last 8 weeks since my last cut to 220.  While it was only about 5lbs it was 5lbs on top of an...

Cutting Weight - Powerlifting, Strongman, Olympic LiftingBoth 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 different objectives that cannot be realized when faced with a 2 hour weigh-in.You may wonder why an athlete would wait to the last minute to cut weight instead of having the discipline to slowly diet down to the desired weight class over weeks or in some case months. 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 the lifters that 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. This is a time for 1) de-loading and 2) 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 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, in the last few weeks as you get close to the target weight, heavy lifts are reduced if not all together removed. You won’t get the chance to learn the balance and...