Sommer Christopher - Building the gymnastic body

Author : Sommer Christopher
Title : Building the gymnastic body The science of gymnastics strength training
Year : 2008

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Introduction. We have all seen them on television during the Olympics; these massive powerful men performing amazing skills with ease and grace. Watching them perform, the question inevitably arises - are they as powerful as they appear to be? And the answer quite simply is - yes. What will probably be even more surprising to you is that they build their strength and physiques almost entirely with various bodyweight exercises. There are of course some supplemental exercises where weights are utilized (i.e. weighted leg lifts), however the central premise remains; these amazing athletes have built the vast majority of their strength and power through the use of bodyweight conditioning. The list of physical training requirements is long and can be rather daunting to prepare a world class athlete: passive flexibility, active flexibility, joint preparation, static strength, dynamic strength etc. etc. and in the past has only been interesting in detail to those of us involved with the physical preparation of champions. It appears that times have changed. This book and its companion volumes are in response to the enormous interest in the area of advanced bodyweight conditioning. Information, which in the past has only been available to a few select elite, is n ow available to all. Now another question that we should ask ourselves - is the body weight training of the gymnast also beneficial to the fitness enthusiast? And if so, is it possible to apply at least some of it to those without a professional instructor to guide them or tens of thousands of dollars of specialized gymnastics equipment? And the answers are once again - yes and yes. There are some of our specialized exercises that are relatively easy to learn and require little or no equipment beyond a chin-up bar, pushup bars and some floor space. Other higher level elements will require more of an investment in equipment. However you will almost certainly be more muscular, powerful, agile and flexible than ever before from successfully following this training. ...

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