Butt Stuff & Mace swings



My underlying philosophy for strength training is building a body that moves well and can handle pretty much anything throws at it and not break. I mean I see no use in have impressive 1rm power on specific exercises if as soon as you put outside your comfort zone, you break down with injury and niggles. I look to look at it in a simple way; things break when the load placed upon them exceeds their strength capacity this isn't just applicable to your physical body but also your mind. We all have limits, but we are all capable of raising said limits if we want to.


Going back to the idea that things break because the load placed upon them exceeds their capabilities your back doesn't hurt because deadlifts are bad for you back it hurts because the weight you lifted exceeded its ability to hold the correct posture, your Achilles tendon didn't rupture because jumping is bad for you its because the force upon landing exceeds its limit strength.


I ask the question what if you back or Achilles tendon in the example above was stronger? Would it have become injured when placed under the same load or stress?........ Probably not. Just as the body can be strengthened under progressive loading, so can the mind by frequent employment of will.


The key is not to subject the body or mind to excessive loading all at once. But to start small and as your body begins to handle the stressors with ease increase the load, repeated for months or years, and you will have a strong, robust body that can handle anything your mind can throw at it.


Now you can take it one step further and focus on muscle or joints that if weak leave you vulnerable to injury, this makes your efforts bear useful fruit.


Strongman events are very lower back dominant. Stones, log, deadlift, yoke and Conan's wheel all tax the lumbar erectors also going into this preparation. I suffered a shoulder injury obtained at children's soft play park, so this needed to be dealt with if I had a chance of putting heavier weights over my head. So I identified these areas as potentially vulnerable to failure not only in competition but also training as the training was going to be intensive and I needed to build my confidence with loading the shoulder.


Being short for time, I decided the workout needed to be fast and effective. How can I strengthen and build endurance in the low back after all it needs to be able to remain strong event after event without signs of fatigue. Training strongman involves lots of lower back already, but I would argue that this isn't sufficient to develop a spine made from granite. Knowing that the training was already going to place the erectors underload, I needed a movement that would be somewhat therapeutic without undue compress of the vertebra because that's the last thing you need. And the other question of how can I strengthen my shoulder while also improving mobility and developing confidence. I needed something that I could progressively load, and that would take the shoulder joint through a full range of motion and also challenge both internal and external rotation.


After much thought, I had decided.


High volume Reverse hypers and mace swings. Seems pretty simple and takes between 8-15mins so could be easily be implemented in the morning at some point. It would allow me to improve the Strength and condition of the entire posterior chain and Strength the shoulder through a complete range of motion challenging both internal and external rotation dynamically.


Week 1 - 30reps on each total

Week 2 - 35reps on each total

Week 3 - 40reps on each total

Week 4 - 45reps on each total

Week 5 - 50reps on each total

Week 6 - 55reps on each total

Week 7 - 60reps on each total

Week 8 - 65reps on each total

Week 9 - 70reps on each total

Week 10 - 75reps on each total

Week 11 - 80reps on each total

Week 12 - 85reps on each total

These mini sessions were performed 5 days a week or Monday through to Friday.


Something important to note is that im not just going through these movements aimlessly im focusing on the quality of movement, core bracing and muscle contraction. For the reverse hyper Im using a pair of old steel toe caps with a couple of 5kg plates duct taped to them, this allows me to train each limb individually to get rid of imbalances as well as have my feet slightly wider improving glute contraction. For the mace swings I'm just using a 2-inch prowler pole with a 1kg disc clipped onto the end, and it works perfectly, in fact, it also challenges the grip a little because of the thickness which is nice.


"man isn't limited by is resources but by his resourcefulness."


Currently, Im feeling strong and robust and although training is hard, my shoulder feels terrific and im more confident than ever loading it up with the circus dumbbell. My back feels strong and stable and isn't feeling fatigued at all even after all the heavy loading. My ability to handle work is probably the highest it has ever been. Implementing some antifragile work could potentially help you reach your physical peak by helping you get stronger and build functional work capacity in weak muscle groups or joints.

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