The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Senior Member Meat_Head's Avatar
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    Moving... a look at the application of functionaly strength

    I had to move my mom's stuff to a new apartment saturday. I decided to do a little experiment since I was bored and miserable anyway... So I decided to see how weightlifting made this task easier, and what specific forms of lifting helped. I want to be sure you make note that I didn't alter the 'form' use to move the furniture and other objects to fit a certain kind of lifting or an exercise... Basically I didn't try to perfectly deadlift a couch or anything like that.

    It involved picking up and loading many pieces of furniture(couches, recliners, small couches, tables, matresses) and boxes/bags full of stuff(all of which were fairly heavy and awkward to carry) through doorways and up stairs into a Uhaul truck or apartment. It took about 5-6 hours to do the bulk of the moving, which was done by me and my brother.

    I'm tempted to say that deadlifting strength is important, but not much of the stuff we moved was actually hard for my hams, glutes, and back to lift off the ground for a rep or two at least. On the other hand, if you didn't have basic flexibility and a good base on lowerback strength, you'd probably get injured lifting the stuff off the ground. Therefore, olympic lifts take the prize for having the most real world application, at least in this situation. There were plenty of times I had to explosively pull something off the ground or up to my shoulders or even overhead a few times. I had to carry many things overhead for distances to, so I'll include overhead supporting/squatting in the olympic catagory.

    The next most important type of strength would be grip strength/endurence. DAMN my forearms are sore. It wasn't just grip(like static hold) strength that was important though, alot of supporting a weight in a certain position of contraction to, somethin pinch grip plate curls would simulate. You need alot of endurence and strength throughout your hands, fingers, and forearms.

    Next most important, and you're gonna hate it, BICEPS! Almost EVERYTHING we had to move involved a contraction of the biceps the whole time. Sometimes it was similar to a heavy curl, but most of the time it was holding the object in a slightly contracted biceps position. Bottom line, DO YOUR CURLS AND PULLUPS! Don't listen to anyone who tells you that biceps aren't important to being strong.

    To be honest, chest strength isn't incredibly important, although its very helpful. Quite a few times I had to squeeze something between my hands or arms. Lat/rowing strength also helped during this to pull it into my torso, keeping the object from falling.

    Cardiovascular endurence is important as well. I was out of breath many times, especially after carrying things up stairs, which also requires a good level of ab and oblique strength to, although you could probably get by without having 'superstrong' abs like many say you must have.

    This may seem a little stupid to you all, but for those intersted in 'functional strength' it may be helpful, despite the fact that its only one way to apply strength(moving furniture etc...).

    So to create a program that focused on these forms of strength, we'd have to do something that included alot of olympic training, strongman training(with focus on carrying events like bearhug and walk, stone loading, etc...), alot of pullups and some curls, ALOT of grip training, and overhead pressing/supporting.

    Just something to consider... If anyone else has had a similar experiences with moving or functional strength please share your thoughts and experiences...

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  3. #2
    Gonnabebig Member JuniorMint6669's Avatar
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    Hey good post. Maybe doing oly lifts and farmer walks with various objects (BB, DB, Kettle, MedicineBalls, Boulders, 5 gallon water bottles, etc) would be good for "real world" strength. Sounds like fun for GPP too. Just gotta find some boulders laying around... thanks for the post, i know what im doing my next "off" day now.

  4. #3
    Senior Member Meat_Head's Avatar
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    Originally posted by JuniorMint6669
    Hey good post. Maybe doing oly lifts and farmer walks with various objects (BB, DB, Kettle, MedicineBalls, Boulders, 5 gallon water bottles, etc) would be good for "real world" strength. Sounds like fun for GPP too. Just gotta find some boulders laying around... thanks for the post, i know what im doing my next "off" day now.
    All of that stuff works really well and is alot of fun to do. It doesn't take a whole lot of effort, just take a few heavy sets off your lifting days and do some strongman work or olympic lifting on your off days. The only problem is finding equipment, but some of the ideas you mention would work fine. Just gotta get creative with the equipment you use.

    Try sled dragging:

    Knock the legs and handles off of a metal wheelbarrow so you just have the sled part. Drill some holes in the front and attach either wires or heavy rope to it, and attach the other ends to a backpack's straps that is worn backwards. Fill the sled with weight, and pull it with the backpack on backwards, or pull it turned around if you want. Use a light weight for GPP, and really heavy weights for actual strongman type training.

  5. #4
    rum soaked derelict
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    I am a mover in the summers. I really think lifting doesnít really helps. Believe it or not itís a lot of technique. But if I had to pick one area where strength is important I would have to say grip. Legs are also good. But its more or less from going up and down stairs all day. Also movers arenít always strong in the gym, a lot of my coworkers who could carry well canít really do anything special in the gym. But I do have to say the strongest person I know is a mover.

  6. #5
    Toughest Man in the World Bruise Brubaker's Avatar
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    "I want to be sure you make note that I didn't alter the 'form' use to move the furniture and other objects to fit a certain kind of lifting or an exercise... Basically I didn't try to perfectly deadlift a couch or anything like that."

    Why wouldn't you "alter" the form? When you lift in the gym you are technically supposed to use the ideal form, i.e. the safest and strongest one, so why wouldn't you apply this technique to "real-world" activities like that?

    The ones who say that bicep strength is not important are probably powerlifters, and it's true for them.

    Grip is probably the most important thing in real-life strength as it is almost always the limiting factor.

    As for biceps, you should try to not use them too much when moving things. A lot of movers injure their biceps tendons. Think of newbies shuggring and flexing their arms during the movement. This is not what you should do.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Meat_Head's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Magnus Musculus
    "I want to be sure you make note that I didn't alter the 'form' use to move the furniture and other objects to fit a certain kind of lifting or an exercise... Basically I didn't try to perfectly deadlift a couch or anything like that."

    Why wouldn't you "alter" the form? When you lift in the gym you are technically supposed to use the ideal form, i.e. the safest and strongest one, so why wouldn't you apply this technique to "real-world" activities like that?


    I mean I didn't try to duplicate, say, a clean when lifting a couch to my shoulders. Very few people would actually use perfect form when moving odd bulky objects.

    The ones who say that bicep strength is not important are probably powerlifters, and it's true for them.

    Grip is probably the most important thing in real-life strength as it is almost always the limiting factor.

    As for biceps, you should try to not use them too much when moving things. A lot of movers injure their biceps tendons. Think of newbies shuggring and flexing their arms during the movement. This is not what you should do.
    It would be hard to do what's necissary in moving very well without strong and enduring biceps, and strong biceps are important to having overall functional strength. That was my point. The fact that I have worked on my bicep/forearm strength helped enormously saturday. I know this because last time I moved the same furniture, I couldn't do it without resting or dropping the stuff twice as much.
    Last edited by Meat_Head; 09-29-2003 at 07:25 PM.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Meat_Head's Avatar
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    Originally posted by OceanFit
    I am a mover in the summers. I really think lifting doesnít really helps. Believe it or not itís a lot of technique. But if I had to pick one area where strength is important I would have to say grip. Legs are also good. But its more or less from going up and down stairs all day. Also movers arenít always strong in the gym, a lot of my coworkers who could carry well canít really do anything special in the gym. But I do have to say the strongest person I know is a mover.
    I would certainly respect your opinion in that area, since you've done it alot more than me.

    I would also agree that you could be a good mover without lifting, but that doesn't mean that lifting couldn't help. Like I said, I've moved the exact same furniture more than once, since I last did it I've gotten alot stronger in the gym, and its shown in how well I could move the furniture.

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