Most trainers and strength coaches all over the world use a few strength building exercises, the squat, the dead lift, the power clean for over all body power. These are great strength builders, but how effective are they really? And do they promise all the hype of real strength building?
I will tell you there is a better way of building overall body strength that will transfer to all athletic sports and everyday life. It’s an exercise that our bodies are made for. You don’t need a lot of weight for a total over all body workout.
If you look and think how the body has been used for centuries you will see that some things modern day trainers look at as full body workouts are damaging to the body.
The squat is considered the «King of exercises» but how often do you really need to put 300lbs on or shoulder in real life and stand up? The fact is that if you ever did need to stand up with 300lbs the chances are you would fail. Why? Because, in the real world 300 lbs that you are lifting would never be balanced, it would be awkward and most men that could squat 300lbs would have a tough time standing up with 200 lbs on their shoulders.
Squatting is big in football, for instance a lineman is always coming out of a squat, There is more pushing than anything else. The pushing will require overall body strength and a big part is the core and not one of the 3 exercises I mentioned will strengthen the core to a point of real function.
Same goes with the dead lift, deadlift 400lbs now grab a 250lb rock and lift it up. The rock is a lot lighter but there is no nice bar to grab your body needs to call on muscle memory to lift something compact, awkward with a whole different body dynamic.
The power clean is another story, most people don’t do it right. Most people are doing it like an explosive reverse curl. Olympic style weight lifters do this correctly most others do not.
The body does not know whether you are lifting sandbags, logs, weights, digging ditches or moving furniture it’s all weight.
But the one thing you can do to build a functional strong body from head to toe is the simple method of shouldering and carrying an unbalanced object for time or distance up hill and downhill. I say it will build strength from head to toe because carrying will strengthen the entire body and the core muscles that are required in all sports and in everything else that will need total body strength and the head meaning it takes mental toughness to carry a weight for time or a predetermined distance.
The great thing is a weight as little as 40 or 50lbs will enough for most men try carrying a 50lb sand bag, rock, log for a ¼ mile or more switching the object from shoulder to shoulder. I like to use a 70 or 100lb heavy bag for walking hills and climbing steps and walking wooded trails. And if you want to build heavily muscled traps and shoulders try shouldering and carrying and let me know how them shoulders and traps feel.
Shouldering and carrying an awkward object should be a big part of any strength training program. Balanced objects fool you into thinking you are stronger than you actually are. Just like bodyweight exercises that require more muscles to do pushups than it does to do bench presses.
Toughness Builds Winners