If you’ve just joined us, welcome. A quick note : while it’s all great content, there’s certainly a lot of it. To make life easier I’ve highlighted my own favourite articles on the site; you’ll find all the details over on the Start Page.
A note on the various images used on Straight to the Bar :
As a quick glance will tell you, we use an incredible number of images on Straight to the Bar. As well as those supplied by individual authors, we source them from Flickr's Creative Commons area, the SttB Flickr Group, and of course my own photographs. Running, cycling, fitness paths and a whole lot more.
Scott is a writer, photographer and a guy who just loves this stuff. He's been at home in front of a computer for more years than he cares to remember (OK, 30) and is now making amends for years of many mistakes noted in the recent De-constructing computer guy articles (part 2) on T-Nation.
Over the years a number of writers have joined the team here. This has helped to look closely at several areas, as you'll see.
The team is :
'Captain' Kirk Fontaine is a Personal Trainer In Cleveland, Ohio, Ex.Sci Graduate, Marine Corp Veteran and Bodybuilder in Training.
He's also the Community Manager of the Straight to the Bar Community over on Google+, and interviews various trainers, coaches and fitness enthusiasts in the weekly Gymchats. If you're a fitness professional and would like to take part in one (or know of someone who should), drop him a line.
'Unbreakable' Adam Glass is an author for Straight to the Bar, and one of the nicest, most helpful, and freakishly strong guys you'll ever meet.
Adam blogs at Low Tech Combat, bringing together Self Protection, MMA, RBSD, Martial Arts and Conditioning into the one place.
Adam Steer is a Head Coach in the Circular Strength Training® system and co-author of the Bodyweight Exercise Revolution e-book. He also trains private and small group clients through his Quebec City company, Momentum Training, and spreads the word about CST’s health-first paradigm through workshops in Singapore, Australia, Washington State, New York City and Philadelphia.
Follow Adam on Twitter and have a chance to win a free Intu-Flow DVD set and Mini-Clubbells®.
Adam Stoffa is a lover of Italian food, German beer and an exceedingly healthy lifestyle inbetween. Find out more about his fascinating blend of fitness and food over at Strength Exercise Eat. Great site.
You can also catch up with him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Perfect.
Al Kavadlo is a personal trainer based in New York, New York; and the author of superb books such as We're Working Out: A Zen Approach to Everyday Fitness (review), Raising the Bar : The Definitive Guide to Bar Calisthenics and Pushing the Limits! Total Body Strength With No Equipment.
Swing by his blog for regular updates on bodyweight strength-training, conditioning, and nutrition. You'll also find him on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Youtube and Google+. And, of course, in Gymchat 223 - Progressive Calisthenics. Fantastic conversation.
Alfred Page certainly loves grip training; with an impressive collection of blobs, grippers and other fun things. Perfect.
Amanda Haren is a strength coach at Strength Coach Amanda.
Anthony is a confirmed kettlebell junkie, enjoying everything from light cardio workouts to putting some serious weight overhead. Find out more at the Fitness Shop site.
Bill Long is the creator of Body by Long blog, a look at Tactical Training and many forms of grip work. Perfect.
Bob Garon blogs at Garon Kettlebell Training and encourages you to Train Hard - Train Smart - Set Your Own Standard.
Brett Kasa can be found over at the Boxing Bag Store, and - as you can no doubt see - loves a solid dose of MMA. Superb.
Caleb Lee is passionate about many forms of strength training, and knows what it takes to build overall fitness and become a superior athlete. You'll find more of his work in the Muscle Building Mastermind ebook, and on DoubleYourGains.com.
Chris Rider is a professional performing Strongman who enjoys an incredible range of old-time strength feats. Find out more at his online home.
Chuck Halbakken is a kettlebell instructor, gym owner and one of the strongest guys you'll ever meet.
Swing by his blog for his thoughts on strength, and details of a truly extraordinary gym.
Conor Doherty is an Educator, Personal trainer, and sports-obsessed fitness-enthusiast. He shares his training wisdom in the Complete Hockey Training System, and at his group training sessions in Ontario, Canada.
Dan Hardisky is a long time fan of the iron, and an author for Straight to the Bar.
Find out more on his Facebook page.
Davie Easton is a tall, hairy, beginner strongman with an epic beard in the making. He is a father to 3 boys and a husband to his awesome wife of 17 years and is from Motherwell, Scotland. Find out more on his blog What Davie Did.
Dean Coulson is a strength and conditioning Coach as well as an avid martial artist & qualified self protection instructor (British Combat Association). Find out more in books like The Fit Formula, and on his site allroundathlete.com.
Derek Peruo, CSCS, is the owner of Renaissance Fitness, an exclusive personal training service based in New York City. He shares his training philosophy via magazines such as Men's Fitness, Muscle & Fitness, and Men's Health. And of course Straight to the Bar.
Dominic Andriacchi is the owner and author of the Athlete Resource Center, a website designed to help athletes of all ages improve their athletic performance, academics, visibility, and to connect with other athletes.
Ferris Stith runs the annual Bikini Challenge, and is an author for Straight to the Bar.
Frank DiMeo is the owner of CrossFit Gulf Coast, and is an experienced trainer, speaker, author, fitness advocate, and seminar presenter. You can keep up with his latest training and ideas at Frank DiMeo's Dewussified Fitness.
Take a look at her training log and you'll see what I mean.
Gregory Schnese is the Web Producer at beYOU.tv; an instructional video community focused on fitness and wellness.
Gubernatrix blogs at gubernatrix.co.uk, and is on a mission to find the best in all-round strength training.
Jason Paris, CSCS is an Atlanta-based strength and conditioning coach and runs Fitness Doctrine, a site dedicated to helping you making your own physical & mental transformation.
And of course in Gymchats 207 & 236. Fantastic.
JC is the creator of the fitness resource JCD Fitness. If you can appreciate a relaxed, no BS approach to training and diet, then you may find his ideas about the fitness lifestyle to be very practical and applicable.
Jedd 'Napalm' Johnson is a name synonymous with grip strength, and he has been training, sharing and competing with these skills for many, many years.
To acquire some serious grip strength yourself, head over to The Grip Authority and check out his superb ebooks and DVDs.
One of our favourites - Fixing Elbow Pain - takes a very thorough look at banishing elbow injuries completely. If you've ever experienced something like Tennis Elbow or Golfer's Elbow, you'll understand just how incredible that is. Fantastic.
Jeff Wilson is a devoted family man and an all around strength and fitness freak. He’s been involved in some type of sports or physical activity for more than two decades. You can keep up with his latest training and endeavors at No Limits as he notes his efforts to break through the physical and mental limits of conventional training on the road to becoming as strong an athlete as possible.
Jen Mullhall is a Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete and working in Ontario, Canada. In addition to the physical aspects of both areas, Jen coaches clients on the 'Mental Toughness' aspects of lifestyle change and sports success.
And, of course, in Gymchat 225 - How to Master the Inner Game. Great conversation.
Jessica Ruane is a writer and blogger specializing in topics such as self-defense, crime, and other areas vital for personal safety. Find out more over on Google+.
Joe Hashey is a CSCS through the NSCA, owner of Synergy Athletics and author of the superb Bull Strength manual. Take advantage of the Synergy Athletics Free Newsletter by signing up at the website. All subscribers get instructions on how make a 3 inch independently revolving thick bar, a free athlete training report, and an insight into Bull Strength!
John Cammidge has been lifting, learning and sharing for more than 10 years. Find out more over at greatweightlifting.com.
John Frieser is a CSCS through the NSCA and co-owner of Synergy Athletics in Endicott, NY. Take advantage of the Synergy Athletics Free Newsletter by signing up at the website. All subscribers get instructions on how make a 3 inch independently revolving thick bar, a free athlete training report, and an insight into Bull Strength!
John Kaiser is a devoted husband and father, and author for Straight to the Bar. He blogs over at Total Transformation Test.
Josh Hanagarne has an undeniable
obsession passion for grip training. When not re-adjusting his bun and telling people to shush, you'll find him over at World's Strongest Librarian. And, of course, on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
Josh Henkin is a Strength and Conditioning coach, serious basketball fan and the man behind the Ultimate Sandbag. Superb thing.
Josh shares his training wisdom in the form of truly incredible articles, videos and books such as Get Lean. You'll also find him on Facebook (both here and here), Twitter, Flickr, Youtube and Google+.
And if you'd like to work with Josh directly (he seriously is a fantastic trainer), I highly recommend his online services. Fantastic.
Justin Andrushko is currently attending the University of British Columbia where he is studying Human Kinetics. He is a certified Specialist in Strength and Conditioning through the ISSA, and plays Running Back for the UBC Thunderbirds. He played high school football for the Ballenas Whalers where he was named the Conference and Provincial All-Star Teams’ Offensive MVP. He still holds all school records in scoring and rushing yards. Away from the field Justin has spent time as a guest coach at several football camps and clinics.
Swing by his blog for regular updates on strength-training, conditioning, and program creation.
Kat 'The Mighty Kat' Ricker is a bodybuilder, writer and lover of putting heavy things overhead. Find out more over on her site.
Kevin 'Sgt Sweaty' Miller is a fan of all things heavy (especially when it comes to strength training), and of physical culture in general. Find out more at his online home - Sgt Sweaty.
Logan Christopher is a physical culture renaissance man, and serious fan of some rather unusual feats of strength. Swing by his blog at legendarystrength.com.
And of course in Gymchat 237. Fantastic.
Maik Wiedenbach is an Olympic athlete, personal trainer, and nutritionist. He shares his training wisdom in the 101 Fitness Myths and 30 Secrets for Bigger Arms! ebooks, and the Desk Athlete DVD. Superb.
Dan Lapic has turned outdoor training into an art form; combining bodyweight training with stone, log, rope and odd-object work. Find out more over on USA Jungle Gym.
Marla Laubisch writes about her progress with the obviously-similar activities of lifting and painting on her blog Weight and Paint.
Matt Hunt is an avid grip enthusiast and personal trainer. He is a certified Mash Monster and has dabbled in strongman, powerlifting, and Crossfit which has brought him much success in the weight room and in life. He is now obsessed with smashing grippers and intends to jump in on the pro circuit of grip within the next year.
Matt Palfrey is a strength and conditioning coach, health and ﬁtness consultant and the founder of the Sandbag Fitness blog - attracting garage-gym trainees from the world over. He believes that training should be simple but effective, and that a no-nonsense approach works best every time.
You'll also find him on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube and Google+. And, of course, in Gymchat 206 - Sandbag Training and Gym Chat 218 - Alternative Approaches to Exercise Prescription. Great conversations.
Matt Potak is a wrestling and football coach at the high school level. He is also a personal fitness trainer in the St Augustine, Florida area. He can be reached at m_potak AT yahoo DOT com.
Matthew Denos PhD is a biologist and fitness enthusiast. On his website, he reviews medically studied diet plans, and provides information about fitness equipment. Check his review of TRX, an innovative training solution invented by Navy Seal Randy Hetrick. Matthew follows the science in the field of resistance training and nutrition and enjoys writing articles explaining the new research findings in the fascinating world of fitness. Matthew has conducted academic research for over 10 years exploring human physiology. Since joining the inspiring Straight to the Bar community Matthew has reinforced his goal to gain 10 pounds of muscle.
Max Misch has competed in various strength sports, and spent years lifting, dragging and flipping all manner of brutal objects. Good fun.
Max Shank is a personal trainer based in Encinitas, California. Find out how to become obscenely strong and check out his own training at Strong as Hell.
Mehdi Hadim is the author of StrongLifts.com, a blog helping you build muscle and lose fat through strength training.
Methuselah blogs about his thoughts on the Paleo diet over at Pay Now, Live Later and shares his extremely creative training over at Train Now, Live Later. An incredible blend of serious stone lifting, gymnastic and free weight work. Excellent.
Mich Cahlon is an author for Straight to the Bar. She blogs at Maspik Teruzim (Enough Excuses).
Mighty Joe Musselwhite is a Texan Strongman and Arm-wrestling Champion, with a passion for all forms of hand and forearm training. Find out more over at his training log.
Mike 'The Machine' Bruce is a professional performing Strongman and motivational speaker. Find out more over on his blog.
Parth Shah is a Strength Consultant based in New Hyde Park, New York and is currently going through his own personal physique transformation. Find out more at Shah Training.
Patrick Ward is the owner of Optimum Sports Performance LLC. He holds a Masters Degree in Exercise Science and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the NSCA and a Performance Enhancement Specialist with the NASM. He is certified in Active Release Techniques (ART) for the upper extremity and is a few weeks away from completing the necessary requirements to be licensed as a massage therapist in the state of Arizona (where he currently resides). He has worked with athletes and general population clients of all ages and abilities on both exercise programs and soft tissue therapies. For more information on Optimum Sports Performance, please check out the OSP site.
Additionally, Optimum Sports Performance hosts a free online forum covering strength and conditioning, sports performance, health and human performance, nutrition and injury prevention.
Rachel Albert-Matesz is a freelance food and health writer, healthy cooking coach, cooking instructor, natural foods chef, and author based in Phoenix, AZ. She is co-author of the award-winning book, The Garden Of Eating and author of The Ice Dream Cookbook. Find out more at The Healthy Cooking Coach blog.
Rick Walker is a competing powerlifter, blogs at There's Something in the Basement and is an author for Straight to the Bar.
Rob Pilger has been involved in boxing as a fighter and now trainer for over 17 years. He currently trains fighters at the Old Skool Fight Sports & Fitness Academy (OSFSFA).
Robert Lucarelli is a former wrestler, DIY equipment enthusiast and one of the strongest guys you'll ever meet. Find out more over at his blog, Bareknucle Boxing.
Rory Hickman is a graphic designer, lover of strength and author for Straight to the Bar.
Ryan Pitts is a performing old-time strongman and manufacturer of the world's toughest grip tools. To see exactly how he trains - and to pick up some great gear in the process - swing by the main site (strongergrip.com), his blog and YouTube channel. Superb.
Sam Cox is the owner and founder of Fearless Training Systems, dedicated to providing world class coaching to athletes who are hungry to be the top in their sport.
Sandy Sommer is a kettlebell instructor, serious football fan and someone who is generally obsessed by fitness.
Scott Andrew Bird is a writer, photographer and a guy who just loves this stuff. He's been at home in front of a computer for more years than he cares to remember (OK, 32) and is now making amends for years of many mistakes noted in the De-constructing computer guy articles (part 2) on T-Nation.
Stalkers may wish to track his every move via Twitter, Google+ or Facebook; everyone else is cordially invited to hop over to his online home. Enjoy.
Scott Latella has been a professional armwrestler for 20 years, winning 5 New York State Titles, finishing 3rd in the1998 Nationals and forming part of Team USA (who won gold) at the World Championships that same year. He now focuses on sharing fantastic wrist tools with the public.
Sue blogs at www.bodybuildersboard.com/blogs; mainly about fitness and health, and getting them to work with your life.
Tamara Wysell is a writer and lover of fitness and health. In her free time she loves to run and write freelance for onlineschools.org.
Tanya Ryno is a film & television producer, an author for Straight to the Bar, and can occasionally be found at tanyaryno.com.
Todd Goldfarb blogs at We The Change and is an author for Straight to the Bar.
You'll also find Troy online on at:
As well as Gymchat 136 - Heavy Training after a Break. Great conversation.
Zach Even - Esh is a Strength & Performance Coach located in Edison, NJ & is the owner of The Underground Strength Gym. Zach co authored the ebook 'Grip Experts' and hosts the most passionate show dedicated to old school strength training which can be found at Underground Strength Show.
And, of course, in Gymchat 217 - Underground Strength Training . Great conversation.
This week :
Monday, starting at 8pm Eastern. See you there.
NB : if you'd like to be interviewed in an upcoming discussion, we'd love to hear from you. It's great to find out how other people train.
And if you'd like to add your comments and suggestions on the Gymchats in general, you can do that here. Cheers.
If you're getting ready to put together a solid Home Gym (fantastic thing), here's how.
And for more, swing by the full guide. Absolutely free.
Want to see (and learn) more Feats of Strength like this? Dive in.
It'll come as no surprise that we've reviewed many, many products over the years. Everything from books, magazines and DVDs to racks, benches and complete home gyms.
To give you an idea :
Looking for a full list of the various equipment and services we use and recommend? No problem - it's all here.
Looking for an upcoming competition, or know of one in your area? Why not add it to the spreadsheet.
There are some superb writers here, looking at the world of strength training from a number of angles. The regulars :
NB : It's a big team - full list here.
In addition, articles are submitted from across the globe. Got a piece you'd like to share? Let us know.
It’s always great to see how other people train.
Over the years we’ve looked at the fitness industry from a number of angles - discussing the history, present approaches and potential future trends involved. Fascinating areas.
When it comes to the last part - discussing potential future trends - things get a little, well, unusual. If it’s an interest you share, or you just want to find out the types of things we think are likely, check out the posts tagged ‘Futurism’. And of course, Gymchat 224 (Roundtable) - The Future of Fitness. Superb discussion.
Jim Stoppani's Encyclopedia of Muscle & Strength (2nd Edition).Looks good. Although it's not out for a while yet (Oct 12), I'm keen to check out the 2nd Edition of Jim Stoppani's Encyclopedia of Muscle & Strength. I'll certainly be posting a review shortly after it becomes available; in the meantime, a couple of brief comments from the first edition of the book : Readers will appreciate the combination of plain facts and expert advice. Anyone looking to build muscle mass will appreciate this thorough, no-nonsense guide to proper strength-training technique. The book is very well written, and provides a complete, precise set of tables throughout the chapters that allow the novice or advanced bodybuilder or strength athlete to start using proven exercises/techniques to improve their appearance and/or performance. The "Rating" matrices of Time/Length/Difficulty/Results alone were, for me, worth the price of the book. Jim Stoppani's Encyclopedia of Muscle & Strength. Good stuff. »»
If you're new to the world of nail bending, this is the perfect book to get. It'll show you the exact techniques you'll need to get started right away. Written by world-class bender Jedd Johnson.
This is a fantastic book. If you've ever considered learning this incredible strength feat, the Card Tearing eBook is the perfect place to start. Love it.
If you ever wake up with that 'just run over by a truck' feeling, you need a copy of Tim Hull's Functional Correction Manual. Not only will it help you to locate and repair the problem, it'll help prevent it happening in the future.
When it comes to body transformation - whether that's an increase in strength, packing on a bit of muscle or losing a bit of excess fat - this is the perfect place to start. Dr Berardi's Precision Nutrition.
This is a fantastic book. As Josh explains, it superbly shows what's going on while you train. Love it.
A superb combination of fitness mythbusting and no-nonsense advice. If you're not quite sure where to start, grab this.
If you've ever watched a Bruce Lee film and marveled at his strength, speed, agility, endurance, flexibility or muscularity, this book should take pride of place in your collection. Unlike many other writings covering everything from Lee's training methods to nutrition, this book is based not on the recollections of people around him; but on Lee's own notes. Brilliant.
For a full list of what we're reading and watching at the moment, just head over to the Recommended Books & DVDs page. See you there.
If you enjoyed these, check out the complete 'Best Of Straight to the Bar' list. Fantastic.
Before you start your fitness journey, it's important to measure a few things.