We all need a change of pace in our daily lives from time to time. In the gym, we too, need to change things up every now and then. Strongman training is a great way to augment your fitness goals on your journey to a stronger, faster and leaner physique. So why is Strongman so good for you? Well, by being in a CrossFit gym we all know that functional movements are better for you because, unlike machines that guide you through the movement, in functional fitness you have to learn the right technique to move your body through space efficiently and safely and to do so all your muscles need to contribute to the effort as most of the movements involve the whole body. Now, how can we make functional movements more taxing for the body and use them to become stronger? We add weight! So here is where barbells come into the scene with all the power-lifting (squat, deadlift, bench) and weightlifting (clean & jerk, snatch) movements. But how can we make this even more challenging? By adding odd objects, uneven weights and carries…and here is where strongman kicks in!! Through virtue of the variety of exercises undertaken in strongman events and the fact that the focus is on lifting heavy stuff outside barbell techniques, strongman training includes movements that are often heavier than their barbell cousins. Anyone who has trained strongman for a while will know their value in crossing over to barbell movements. Performing an exercise that allows you to lift heavier than the barbell equivalent overloads the central nervous system making it easier when it comes to achieving personal records in the lighter barbell movement. Having experienced the heavier load before you’ll also have more confidence when the weight is on your back or in your hands at the start of the lift. Want to know another great way to become stronger using strongman movements? Loaded carries! Yes, it’s that simple…pick up a weight and walk with it!! Why? Walking itself recruits a large number of muscles, so imagine the results you get from loading it! Loaded carries will make you stronger, leaner and more muscular. The single sided carry variations are also a very good tool for teaching you how to use your core and all the smaller muscles more effectively. So, to sum it up a little:
- Carry heavy stuff
- Lift objects with different shapes and weight
- Combine strength and cardiovascular training
- Pull and push…make sure you do both :)
- Don’t forget to master the basic movements before you add load
- Coolest training pics are of people flipping heavy tires, pushing sleds and lifting sandbag…also your Instagram game will benefit with some strongman training
- High five people that are suffering with you…it won’t make you stronger but it’s cool to be kind, so be cool and kind!