Saturday, October 25, 2008

Neck Training - Hoffman, Grimek, McCallum






Neck Specialization
by John McCallum

Work your neck at least twice two days a week. If you really want to build it fast, three. Figure on spending half an hour to an hour on your neck each time you work it. Pump it up all you can.

Start out with shrugs. Lift your shoulders way up around your ears and then let them drop down all the way. Use a reverse grip and alternate your grip each set. Get up over 300 pounds as quickly as you can and do 5 sets of 12 reps. Shrugs will bulk up the traps and give you a nice tie-in to the neck.

Next, alternate the following exercises for 5 sets of 10 reps each. Start with the wrestler’s bridge. You might find it pulls your hair a bit. If you can get hold of a tight fitting toque, wear it while you’re doing the bridges. Make sure you do all the work with your neck. Don’t just push-up with your legs and rock back and forth on the top of your head. Lower right down till your shoulders touch the ground, and then lever your body back up again. Work up to using extra weight as fast as you can. Hold the weight across your chest and brace your legs well apart for balance.

After each set of bridges, do the following. Lay face up on a flat bench with your head sticking over the end. Hold a weight on our forehead and raise your head up and down. Let your head roll back as far as it’ll go, and then raise it up till the muscles cramp on the front of your neck. Put padding on your forehead. Hold the weight in position with your hands, but don’t use them to lift it. Make your neck do all the work.

Rest for a couple of minutes after you finish those two exercises, and then stick on your head strap. Hook it to your pulley machine, and stand so that the pull is sideways on your neck. Roll your head down sideways like you were trying to touch your shoulders with your ear, and hold that position for a split second. Let your head go back up again, and repeat for 12 reps. Alternate both sides of your neck for 5 sets each.

Finally, do the exercise for the back of your neck with the head strap. Brace your hands on your knees, keep your body bent forward, don’t move anything but your head. Do 5 sets of 8 reps.

Now, if you have time, finish off with resistance work. Use a moderate pressure with your hands and concentrate on pumping. You should be able to pump up your neck a good inch or so.



Develop A Strong Neck
by John Grimek

Two or three neck exercises should be included in one’s training program; two for developing and one for strengthening those muscles. Hand-resistance can be used at the beginning to get the neck muscles accustomed to such work, then weight resistance exercises can prove of more value. The following are some of those which can be used:

Mono-resistance –
Place left hand against left temple, now force head to opposite side while resisting the push. Repeat 12 to 15 times each side.
Put hands with interlaced fingers on back of head, force head front while opposing with neck resistance. Repeat as above.
Reverse position. Place hands on forehead and push head backwards, resisting with the neck muscles.


Head Strap –
Bend forward so weight hangs free of body and brace yourself by putting the hands on the thighs. By allowing the head to drop forward and then raising it the neck is well exercised. 12 to 15 times.

Same as above in reverse fashion, the chain should be in back of head. This exercise is best done while lying on a high flat bench or on an incline so the weight hangs free. Raise head in an effort to touch chest with chin.

If headgear is not available, use barbell plate or dumbell (covered with a pad) and place it across the forehead. Sit or lie on an incline or flat bench and exercise the neck by dropping the head as far back as possible and then raising it and supporting the weight so it doesn’t roll off.

Wrestler’s Bridge –
Regular. Lie flat on back with some padding under head. Now bridge by arching your body so your weight is supported on head and feet, adjusting feet so position is comfortable. Rock back and forth on head and feet. Going to each extreme position is good and the neck muscles benefit tremendously from this exercise. Repeat 12 to 15 times, gradually working up to 25 repetitions, then, using weight for added resistance, begin again at 12, working up to 25.

Reverse. Lie face down, then raise the body in jackknife position, supporting yourself on head and toes. Now rock back and forth, also in a circling motion. Repeat 10 times in each direction.

A program for neck developing should consist of at least two exercises; one isolation style exercise to develop the muscles, the other to increase the strength of the neck structure. Wrestler’s bridges are excellent strength builders. Also, in the same position such exercises as the pullover and bridge press, etc. can be done to make the neck stronger.




Building The Strength Of Your Neck
by Bob Hoffman

The best way to develop the neck is by use of the head strap and progressive weights, and by performing various forms of the wrestler’s bridge with heavy weights. Simple, non-apparatus, light movements are only substitutes for exercise of a real nature.

You must determine what type of neck you desire to develop. At one time there was a fad of displaying the largest possible bull or wrestler neck. later there was a desire on the part of most body builders to have a neck only moderate in size. The choice is yours. It is possible to bring the neck to a larger size faster than the calf or arm.

The best way to develop the neck is by lifting weights with it. Some men use a device for teeth and jaw lifting, made of leather, cut to shape, to develop the neck. Many strength athletes by practicing this lift have developed enough strength that they can be hanged without ill effect, an ability that may come in handy on long and lonely nights. Some years ago there was a dentist in Rochester who specialized in this form of lifting, reaching a record of well over 500 pounds. A lifter by the name of Joe Vitolla a few years ago made a record of 550 pounds in this style of lifting. Joe Zimmerman used the strength of his neck and jaw in his professional act to straddle his brother Dick, about 150 pounds in bodyweight, pick him up with his teeth lifting device and run around the stage with him. Don’t grasp the rope fastened to the weight with your teeth, this will in time be injurious to them, but obtain or make a mouthpiece made to fit your own jaw. These are so made that an old man without teeth at the fair was doing what is actually called teeth lifting, the leather mouthpiece held back of his gums. A well-developed, square jaw will accentuate the size of your neck. Head strap exercises, weighted wrestler’s bridge variations, and bridging pullovers will enlarge and strengthen the muscles of the neck quickly.

A shrug performed with the bar bell back of neck, as in a deep knee bend is often performed. By holding the shoulders up position and tensing the neck simultaneously, great stress is placed on the entire muscle structure.

A Strong Neck And A Powerful Jaw
by Bob Hoffman

There are three accepted methods of neck development. Resistance exercises provide little benefit for other parts of the body, for instance as in moving the head against hand-applied resistance. Resistance exercises will serve as preliminary movements before going into the various forms of bridging and neck strap exercises and little more.

There are some who do not like bridging exercises for they feel actual pain as they practice them. But you should not be too uncomfortable if you procure a cushion on which to rest your head.

Perform bridging movements both with the front of the body facing up, and with the front of the body facing the floor. A multitude of neck strap teeth lifting variations are possible, and the more often you perform them, the more blood will be sent to the neck structure, resulting in growth and development. Aside from the development these exercises will provide for the jaw and neck, a smooth unwrinkled face will also result.

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