Friday, April 27, 2018

Revised Technique for the Preacher Curl - Steve Davis

Like so many of the training techniques and exercise devices of the 50s and 60s, the Preacher Curl, designed during bodybuilding infancy, has been worn threadbare by today's standards of totally conceptualized training. However, with several modifications, the Preacher Curl can be the best bicep training device available. 

So then, what caused my discontent with the standard or traditional Preacher Bench? 

During my first years of arm training, I did more listening and imitating than thinking. I had the most famous Preacher Bench of that time available to me, but I didn't get the kind of results with it that others were realizing. I noticed that most of the development I obtained was around the elbow-upper forearm and lower bicep. My brachialis  and "peak" received little, if any, stimulation. The net result of my first experience with the Preacher Bench was an arm that looked impressive in a short sleeve shirt, but when flexed, did nothing.

My goal as a gym owner was to take each piece of equipment I had used and liked, and make it better. I have very discriminating standards, so naturally for me, providing the very best gym equipment to my students is a matter of pride. I wanted the very best a piece of equipment could offer.

The main problem with the traditional Preacher Bench was that the bench angle was too flat to create any bicep stimulation in the last 1/3 of the movement. To make the Preacher Bench Curl a complete contractile movement, the bench angle must be slightly less than vertical of about 5 degrees from straight up and down. Trial and error will garner you the exact best angle for the length of your arm

Before you go out and have your Preacher Bench welded at a steeper angle, try a number of different angles by placing a block under the stand. When you have found the correct angle, have your welder preserve it. To check the angle out, determine if the angle is steep enough to force you to work against gravity throughout the entire range of motion. Your bicep should not relax during the curling motion. In fact, with a steep enough angle, the last 1/3 of the movement should be the most difficult to perform.

Another improvement I've fostered is to recess that part of the bench where the elbows should be placed. The Preacher Bench curling position should allow you to have your elbows closer together in position than the width of your hands on the bar. I generally try to keep my elbows 8 inches apart and my hands 15-20 inches apart. This position allows you to keep the little fingers higher than the thumbs and produce a slight supination even when using a barbell. By recessing the Preacher Bench in two 3 inch vertical strips 8 inches apart, you will prevent the elbows from wandering during the curling motion.

Once you have redesigned your Preacher Bench, you will have a better understanding of the effect angles can have in training. It has been my experience that even the slightest change of exercise angle can produce amazing results. You should be conscious of the equipment you use. If it isn't effective, redesign it. 

Here are several Preach Bench curling routines I have used with success: 

Note: This article is courtesy of Liam Tweed's Collection. 

1) Barbell Preacher Curl - 
Perform 4 sets of 10 reps and no burns. Do this 3 days a week. The catch is that each week you must add 5 pounds.

2) Dumbbell Preacher Curl supersetted with Barbell Preacher Curl - 
Perform 8 reps DB Preacher Curl with 4 top 1/3 burns, then without resting perform 8 reps BB Preacher Curl with 4 burns. Do 4 supersets, 3 times a week. 

3) Tri-Set: 
DB Preacher Curl -> BB Preacher Curl -> EZ Bar Reverse Curl - 
Perform 6 reps with 3 burns of each exercise in tri-set fashion. Go through this tri-set 4 times, 3 times a week. 

I suggest that you try one of these routines that fits your level of advancement in bodybuilding for 6-8 weeks. The Angle-Preacher Bench, as I call it, should revolutionize bicep training because it represents the New Breed concept of quality training, continuous tension and personalized techniques.   

I have said there are no secrets in bodybuilding, which is true, since 
it is no secret that thinking must precede action. 

Here's a heads up on a rare and hard to find Steve Davis manual. It's more than likely a compilation of the articles Davis and Harvey Keith wrote for the Raders' Iron Man magazine.

The Press, Part Two - Al Murray (1954)

This Series Generously Made Possible by Liam Tweed

Part One is Here:

by Al Murray (1954) 

Now let us go back and observe the important points of the correct starting position at the shoulders. The bar should be supported as much as possible by a high chest, it should be in such a position that when the chin is held in the bar may be pressed vertically. The hip joints should not be vertically over the ankle joints but instead they should be eased slightly forward so that the bar, hip joints and insteps are in line

Click Pic to ENLARGE

The chest should be held high so that the dorsal spine is in extension; this is also favorable to the pressing muscles, for any anatomist will explain that a muscle works more efficiently when it is working from a static and fixed origin. 

Another point, when the bar passes the top of the head, commonly known as the sticking position, the lifter normally gives way at his weakest point and this is nearly always the dorsal spine. If you do not assume the correct technical position in pressing and believe in the old fashioned idea of getting heavy weights up anyhow in training, you are robbing yourself of the chance to develop power in the dorsal region by failing to make use of the strong dorsal muscles. 

You are also neglecting a very important quality necessary in the pressing of heavy poundages, that is Will Power or discipline. The discipline I refer to is the determination to hold the correct position at all times. It is easy to note a lifter who does not possess this quality, he will often finish his to press with his shoulders practically resting on his buttocks. 

The opposite was obvious in Vorobiev's case t the last world's championships in Sweden. As he pressed his heavier weights he was fighting not only to get the bar to arms length but to maintain his chest in a high position.

When a lifter is fully aware of the aforementioned advantages and disadvantages he is then conscious that as the bar is approaches the sticking point just above the head he will tend to bend at the dorsal spine. To combat this he should forcibly raise the chest and extend the dorsal spine, fighting the bar vertically overhead, at the same time striving with all his power to keep his chest in this high position )see Figure B). 

If you are not sure whether you are pressing in a good or bad form, you can test yourself in the same manner as I tested Jan Smeekins of Holland. A wonderful lifter on the snatch, and clean and jerk but comparatively weak on the press. With poundages over 209 his position is very dodgy. My own press, as far as poundages are concerned, leaves much to be desired, yet I feel sure if I adopted the folding up procedure of many of our lifters I could do some 20 pounds more than 205. But I should not have the hard neck to discredit the referee's intelligence with such tactics. I asked Jan (in order to prove my point that his position was bad) to follow me through this exercise . . . 

I took 176 pounds, brought it to my chest, pressed it to my chin, stopped the bar, then to the nose, pause, back to the chin, pause, press to the forehead, pause, then completed the press without losing my position. I asked Jan to try this with 170 and he failed hopelessly. 

Les Willoughby has done this exercise with 209. Ken MacDonald, the Australian middleweight now in the country, greatly improved his pressing position by working hard on this exercise. We have seen Ken do 241 on several occasions, and he is doubtless capable of more. 

The purpose of this exercise is threefold: 

(1) To teach the lifter to press in the correct position and along the line of least resistance. 

(2) This exercise also teaches you to balance the center of the bar, and center of your bodyweight vertically over the center of your base, i.e., the insteps. 

(3) It also forces the lifter to use the pressing muscles. Instead of bending back into a position where other muscle fibers are used, which are not normally involved in correct pressing. 

Diligent training for technique on the press will reward you with an increased top press, and I may add, you  be surprised at the increase in muscular development and shoulder posture. 

One of the latest lifters to be rewarded for his efforts is Alan Conway, famous as a Junior Mr. Britain, now an Olympic lifter and winner of the bantamweight class at the recent Maccabian games. Alan's press was stuck around 155. He joined my gym to train for the above games, he proved himself to be an excellent student s he readily assimilated the instructions given to correct his pressing.

He was also taught to press as fast as possible whilst maintaining the correct pressing position. This develops the essential quality of speed of muscular contraction, to cut a long story short Alan, in the short space of three months increased his press to 181, an increase of 26 pounds, for a small man this is more than a fair reward for his efforts.     

Set out to adopt the correct pressing position, keep good positions throughout the press itself.

From time to time include dumbbell pressing in your training schedule, providing you press the dumbbells in the same position s you would assume whilst pressing a barbell.

Some advocate the bench press as an assistance exercise, buy many are sadly disappointed as I was after specializing on the bench press and press on back until I broke the British record several times without a single pound of reward in the standing press. However, I do believe there are some who do respond. Then there are dozens of top line bench pressers who find themselves extremely weak by comparison when in the upright position. Still, there is little doubt that it is of great assistance to the beginner and the intermediate Olympic lifter as a fundamental power builder.

Seated pressing with dumbbells and barbell, also the press from behind neck, are very valuable contributions to powerful pressing.

Naturally no article on the press would be complete without some Gen on training schedules, so here goes . . .

I would like to say a few words of advice to the beginner, so that he will have a fair chance to improve his technique. He is well advised to keep his poundages low enough to allow a fair number of sets of 5, 4, and 3 reps as follows.

Let us assume your top press is around 140. Start pressing with
90 for 5 or 6 reps. Then
100 x 4
120 x 3
125 x 1 or 2
Drop back to 105 for 4 reps.

For the more experienced lifter the reps must be kept lower to allow him to handle heavier poundages. For example, Top Press around 195:

Warm up with light pressing, then
145 x 4
155 x 3
165 x 3
175 x 2
185 x 1
Drop back to 160 x 3,3,3,3.

As a change from dropping back to 160 and doing sets of 3, attempt to press 185 for 3 to 5 singles. However, it is not wise to keep this up for longer than 3 or 4 weeks, as limit poundages in training are a great drain on nervous energy.

There are many schedules and variations, but the aforementioned schedules are a good sound base from which to work. Give this technique and training a fair chance and I'm sure you will be delighted. 

Thursday, April 26, 2018

The Press, Part One - Al Murray (1954)

This series courtesy of Liam Tweed

More on Al Murray's life here:

Prior to the war anyone using weights was considered a weight-lifter. However, these days there are so many branches, body-building, all-round-lifting, weight-training for all sports, and Olympic lifting, which incidentally is considered to be the athletic and competitive branch of consists of three lifts, namely: 

The Two Hands Clean and Press
The Two Hands Snatch
The Clean and Jerk. 

In competition there are seven classes: 


Three attempts are permitted on each of the three lifts, the best attempt on each of these lifts are added together to form a total, the lifter with the highest total in each class being the winner. Every type of athletic quality is required to reach the top in this sport but these will be dealt with when they crop up. So now, let us start with 


 The Press is believed to be a sheer feat of strength, but there is much more to it than strength. Correct positioning of the body during actual training and in competition can reduce the lifter's difficulties and increase his limit poundage. 

In cleaning the bar to the chest much time and energy can be saved if one cultivates the correct method of cleaning a weight to the shoulders in preparation for the press itself. The feet should be placed approximately hip breadth apart with the bar touching the shins and over the insteps. 

The width of the grip is indeed important. This should be slightly wider than one's shoulder breadth so that when the bar is at the chest the upper arms are in line with the body and not facing forward against the front of the chest. The grip can either be thumbless or with the thumb around the bar in the normal manner. 

Oscar State and myself went through over one hundred photographs of lifters from other parts of the world and there seemed to be an equal number of top line pressers using the thumbless grip as there were using the normal grip. 

Assuming that you have now gripped the bar in the correct position, your back should be straight but not vertical, shoulders slightly forward in front of the bar, head up and eyes looking to the front. This distribution of the weight of the body evenly over the whole surface of the foot so that when your bar leaves the floor, the center of gravity (or balance) will be traveling vertically upwards over the center of the base, i.e., insteps. 

Use your legs and back in the pull as much as possible so that you may conserve the strength of your arms and shoulders for the press itself. As the bar slows down passing the chest, quickly dip at both knees, lowering the body to receive the bar on the chest at the exact position from which it will be pressed (see Figure 1). 

 Click Pics to ENLARGE

Now comes a very important part, that is positioning your body in the best balance and most powerful position for pressing.

The mechanics of this are simple -- but seldom correctly observed. The lifter should aim to have the center of the bar as near as possible over his personal center of gravity (or balance) and these two points must be placed centrally over the lifter's base. The bar must also be in such a position that it can be pressed vertically overhead, still maintaining position over the center of your base. If the bar is held too high on the sternum the lifter will most probably be forced to swing the bar forward to clear the chin. It is then a mechanical impossibility to keep the body still, in the correct position.

Once the bar has left the ground the body and barbell now become one mass with a common center of gravity. This is known as the combined center of gravity. In pressing the barbell forward from the chest two things can happen:

(1) As the bar goes forward you may come up on your toes, being pulled forward by the bar. This, by the way, is quite common and is a cause for disqualification.

(2) This is more common -- as the bar travels upwards and forward, the head and shoulders are lowered backwards to counterbalance the weight moving forward. The distance between shoulder joint and barbell is increased, making it harder for the muscles involved (see Figure 2). This backward movement with moderate weight may escape notice of the referee. But it is a simple law of mechanics that the heavier the weight the further back the shoulders will fall in an effort to counteract the additional weight of traveling forward.

A narrow grip can also cause this trouble. If you take a particularly narrow grip you will observe when pressing the bar your elbows will be forced to travel well to the front. The weight will then be transmitted vertically downwards through the forearms and elbows. This imaginary line will continue to fall downwards in front of the toes. The shoulders in consequence will be forced backwards, hence the reason for the success of the more modern wide grip. When the wide grip is used you will note that whilst pressing from the chest, the bar, elbows, hip joints and insteps are more or less in one vertical line. This is a strong and economical pressing technique.         


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Ian Mac Batchelor - Charles A. Smith (1952)

A few more articles on Mac Batchelor are here

It's also definitely worth noting how well this article is written.
Charles A. Smith, top shelf Iron Game Author!

The glories of any era and any sport have always tightly grasped the imagination of the young, the experienced, and the old aged in an embrace that was sought out and welcomed. Strange, how all men sigh for the past, wander among its dim lit rooms via memory's corridors, and with a nostalgic longing seek to recapture the event, and live again with the colorful personalities that were its inhabitants. 

Why this strange fascination for things gone by? Why this longing for the glorious deeds of the men who lived generations ago? The mind finds it pleasant to wander unchecked, to speculate, to relive the lives of those who are no longer with us. 

Youth finds inspiration, while the experienced seek further adventure. Old age is itself justified, and basks in the sunlight of traditions. In no other sport is this so true as in weight lifting and bodybuilding, and we are very blessed, for the men who have made our sport famous are ageless. They will be as much alive three hundred years from now as they were in their heyday. Their timeless feats of strength will serve as the spur to greater things when you and I are dust. 

Today, we have our links with the past. We read of the mighty power of Cyr and Swoboda. We dream of strength that was Saxon's and Sandow's and we long for the immortal mantle of Hackenschmidt and Zbyszko. 

There are men alive who can speak familiarly of the Heroes of the Iron Game, who tell us what they did and the lives they lead. They will tell you of the mighty muscles, the incredible power of the Giant of the barbell. They will tell you their like will never be seen again. They speak with wistful longing of the "good old days". They mention the lusty living, the enormous appetite and the zest for life of the Game's greats and they never fail to add these words: "Wish there were men like them now." 

How mistaken they are! Gentlemen, I give you a man who is the reincarnation of all that Swoboda and Steinbach and Cyr stood for, that salty old son of a spigot . . . MAC BATCHELOR! 


No mealy mouthed puritan this Mac! Here is a man after my own heart . . . warm . . . human . . . lovable, MIGHTY MAC BATCHELOR. 

Sure, the boy likes his beer; sure he loves his "vittals" and why shouldn't he, for if ever a man reminded you of past glories and future greatness that man is Mac, a giant, genial good natured Hercules. Mighty of arm and back and thigh, and loving all the good things of the earth. Standing close to 6 feet 2 inches in height and weighing as much as 335 pounds, his round, moon-like countenance is graced by a curling pair of mustachios as luxuriant as those on a quarter of bull walruses. 

His fingers and hands possess an incredible, frightening power, and a strange gentleness that can caress the violin he loves as a man plays with the tresses of his sweetheart. Here is a modern strong man in the Grand Manner. Powerful and lusty, a giant trencherman with a personality as colorful as the traditional rainbow. Strongman-ism is in his blood and part of his family's history for centuries. 

 Mac Batchelor, top row, 3rd from your left.
How many in that photo can you name? 

Mac was born in Aberdeen, Scotland some forty-plus years ago, of ancient and noble Scots lineage. His mother was of the Clan MacFarlane and his father of the Royal Clan Stewart. Mac's father was a naturally powerful man and all his uncles on both sides of the family were noted for their fleetness of foot and hardy nature. The grim, granite-grey Scotch moorlands never spawned tougher breed than the Batchelor family! 

One of the family, a Robert Batchelor of Vancouver B.C., a sea captain at 21 years of age as well as a pilot for many years, saved innumerable lives at sea with the strength of his arms. At climbing aloft his reputation was as his prowess . . . phenomenal; while at rope-climbing he was never beaten. When the "crimps" tried to take his crew ashore against his wishes [Shanghaiing or crimping is the practice of kidnapping people to serve as sailors by coercive techniques such as trickery, intimidation, or violence. Those engaged in this form of kidnapping were known as crimps.], he picked up the ship's anvil and threw it over the side into their longboat as it lay by the ship. Mac's dad was just as strong and bold. Once on a Canadian ranch, a bull had gone berserk. Father Batchelor sprang into the enclosure with a length of trace chain in his hand. One sweeping blow and the bull was stretched insensible at his feet. At 80 years of age, Father Batchelor is still hale and hearty.

Mac himself was always interested in sports. His Dad had him running almost as soon as he could toddle, and at the age of 8, Mac was rowing boats in a nearby bay. Before reaching his 'teens, Mac could swim a mile in choppy water, little realizing the tremendous foundation he was laying. In school he was always much stronger than any other boy and participated in all the major and minor sports. 

Weighing around 200, Mac could clock "evens" for the hundred yards, 22 seconds flat for the 220 and 51 seconds for the quarter mile. He also tossed discus, flat footed and with no spin in the "circle" for a distance of 125 feet, and he also threw the javelin 185 feet with either hand, as well as putting a shot 46 feet . . . and he did this consistently over a period of three years. Mac got his school letters in track and field . . . in basketball, football, swimming, cross country running and was NEVER defeated in rowing. As a matter of fact, during the annual three summer months vacation, Mac averaged five to eight miles daily row no matter what the weather. 

To Man belongs the honor of beating the first single cylinder outboard motor over a two mile course, Big Mac handling the oars of course. Another terrific feat of strength and endurance was when Mac pulled a 30 foot motor launch off a sand bar, and then towed the darn thing a distance of 15 miles . . . all with the aid of a 12 foot rowboat, a pair of oars, and his mighty muscles.

You think you heard something? Get ready for more! 

On what Mac calls his "lucky day" he took part in a track meet. A local bigwig had donated an array of gold medals and a gigantic loving cup for the best all around athlete. Mac won the 100 yard dash, the 220, the 440, the shot put, the discus and javelin throws, gaining a gold medal for each event and the gold cup . . . as the best all around athlete . . . naturally. It was nothing for the big kilty to compete in the 100, the 220, the 440, and as the anchor man on the 440 relay. 

Figuring he didn't get enough exercise anyway, Batchelor often played on two football teams t the same time. The Junior Team in the morning and the Varsity Team in the afternoon, with no one the wiser. When he left school, Mac played professional football, wrestled amateur, then professional for several years, and still thinks Grappling's a great game in spite of everything.  

Cycling was his next preoccupation and Mac thought nothing of making 20 or 30 miles a day with a case of beer strapped onto his back. Cycling over as much hilly country as possible, Mac would seek a secluded spot where he replenished the perspiration lost on the way in fierce pedaling. The return trip was, strangely, a lot swifter with an empty knapsack and the memory of Arthur Saxon and his beer drinking propensities to waft him along.

Mac got his first glimpse of weights in High School. A pal had an old Milo catalogue with photos of their "remarkable cases". George F. Jowett illustrated many of the exercises and was Mac's first inspiration. Some of the local boys purchased a 100-lb set and Mac started to use it. In three months he had a 16 inch neck, arms and calves, a 45 inch chest and 24 inch thighs. He was proud, real proud of his muscles, and told the athletic coach it was his ambition to be a strong man. The coach, after recovering from his fit of screaming warned Mac of the dire consequences that followed in the wake of weight lifting . . . you could become muscle bound, get restricted muscle motion and every disease from rheumatoid arthritis to clubfoot. "And, young man," he went on, "all strong men have pimples." That was the heaviest shot from the anti-weightlifting cannon. It impressed Mac more than somewhat. The coach was a well built guy with big chest and arms (Mac later learned he secretly training in his cellar with a Milo barbell set). Renouncing the weights, Mack took to high jumping but returned to the fold in the early 1930's when he read more of Jowett's literature and Alan Calvert's books. 

He followed the old Milo courses . . . 5 reps for the upper body, increasing by 1 rep every third workout until 10 were reached . . . then drop to 5 and start all over again with a greater weight. Mac obtained excellent results,  making haste slowly as it were and remaining well within his limit. Always has Batchelor worked for great reserve energy rather than all out expenditure every workout. He prefers to wind up with a feeling of stimulation rather than enervation. 

In comparing the feats of the old time strong man with his modern counterpart, Mac doesn't hesitate to state that the present day strength athlete is a better all round workman than the old timer. This is because of the use of precision weights, a more scientific approach and the fact that greater dexterity and balance is required in accomplishing record poundages in the modern lifts. This factor has encouraged men who did not possess giant bulk to train hard and become record holders in their lighter bodyweight classes.

Mac has tried many weightlifting schedules but has always returned to a few basic exercises which have proven to be the keys to strength, altho not always the solution to a perfect all round build. Batchelor realizes that this requires a particularly specialized type of training which will bring out each muscle group to its limit. 


A sample of the Batchelor workout is enough to give the strongest man the staggers. He usually does all his leg work in one training period . . . he starts off Hip Lifting . . . 3 sets of 20 reps with 2,000 pounds if you please . . . and a two minute rest between each set. Then comes quarter squats with the positively wispy poundage of 1,200 . . . 3 sets of 20 again . . . then he does a "light" routine of FULL deep knee bends with an infant's weight of . . . I hate to even mention it . . . 350 pounds, 3 sets of 20 reps. 

The next workout Mac does might be as much as a week later and exercises his upper body. He does dumbbell curls with poundages ranging from 60 to 90 pounds in 10 pound jumps, 8 reps each set. Stiff legged deadlifts, 300 x 20 for several sets. Deadlifts, 500 x 8 for several sets. Bench press, 275 x 3 sets of 10, 300 x 3 x 8, 350 x 3 x 3. Then he heaves a few FULL beer barrels around and calls it a day.

Mac doesn't know his limits in any of the lifts butt has performed a perfect OLD STYLE two hands military press with 275 pounds, has bench pressed 375 for a single, deadlifted 580 x 8, and curled 200 pounds time out of number, and with the "hands alone front grip" has raised 1,055 pounds just off the ground.            

His impromptu feats of power would fill a good sized book. Among the most remarkable of them is pulling a 20 foot high banana tree up by its roots (witness, Willis Reed). Perhaps the most remarkable gripping feat ever performed is the muscling out of two 15 gallon beer kegs filled with water up to 60 pounds weight. Mac held these out grasping them by the chines. He has also knocked a young bull insensible with a well timed blow to the forehead. His coin bending, bottle cap squashing, wrist turning feats are too well known to bear repeating here. Mac has NEVER been defeated at any one.

"Life," says Mac, "begins at forty and for me the future is indeed bright. I look for my personal ambitions to be realized within the next decade. Youngsters are certainly fortunate that they live in an age when weight lifting has come into its own!

Mac's current measurements at a weight of 300 pounds are as follows:

Height: 6 ft. 1-1/2 in.
Neck: 21
Chest, normal: 54
Waist: 43
Hips: 46
Upper Arm: 19-1/2 cold
Forearm: 15, straight
Thighs: 30
Calves: 19-1/2

Macs choice for the greatest in the world is . . . JOHN DAVIS . . . "If you judge a man by the international lifts then John is my choice," opines Mac, "otherwise you'll have to choose men famous at specialties . . . Saxon in the bent press . . . Rigoulot in the single arm snatches . . . Swoboda in the continental jerk. No doubt in my mind that Davis is the greatest of them all."

Gentlemen of the Barbell, I again give you giant, genial Mac Batchelor. Athlete, bon viveur, and gentleman. The world has been a grand place with him, a lot more laughter, a heap more good fellowship and tolerance with no mealy mouthed piety.

Mac loves life and life has indeed been good to him. Yes, the world has been a grand place with Mac, it might well have been a lot worse off without him. Here's mud in your eye, Mac, and may the good lord take a liking to you!           

Born May 24, 1910, Petaluma, California
Passed August 10, 1986, Torrance, California.


Power Training Interview with Bruno Sammartino - Jon Twichell (1964)

October 6, 1935
April 18, 2018

Question: First of all, Bruno, have you always been rugged and powerful? 

Answer: Far from it! My family, living in Italy during World War 2, suffered greatly. I was a victim of malnutrition, and even after we moved to this country I continued to be sickly and run down. I used to make weekly trips to the doctor for vitamins, tonics, etc. 

Q: How did you get started in weight training? 

A: Well, I had a friend who was a very good weight lifter. He got me interested, even though at the time I weighed only 105 pounds, and I started lifting at the East Liberty YMCA in Pittsburgh. I was 16 at the time. 

I really enjoyed weight training and soon started entering Olympic lifting and power lifting contests. The first time I competed was in the 123-pound class.

Q: Tell us how you developed your training routines.

A: Well, mostly from reading the various muscle magazines on the market. I tried and discarded exercises I feel wouldn't help me in my quest for power and size. I feel you have to set up a routine that suits you personally and what you want from your weight training, not follow every new exercise or routine that comes out. 

Q: Tell us about your training . . . what do you do for a routine now? 

Click to ENLARGE

A: Well, you realize that as the World Wrestling Champion I'm on the go constantly, traveling to and from my wrestling engagements. As a matter of fact, later this month I'm going for a two month tour of Europe and Australia, including a visit to my old home in Italy, and a private audience with the Pope.

Training under these conditions is erratic, so I keep a routine of three basic exercises -- Bench Press, Curls, and Standing Laterals. I use bench presses as the cornerstone of my training, doing 10-12 sets. I start around 300, and work up doing sets of 3-5 reps, then a single with maximum poundage.   

My recent best was a single rep with 500 pounds, at Mid-City Health Club, where I always train when I'm in New York City. Then I finish off with an endurance set . . . I did 33 reps with 330 in the same workout as the 500 single . . . as I find this type of training helps my wrestling. Then I just do some Curls and Laterals to keep my arms and shoulders in the pink.

Q: This isn't the routine you used for developing all your power, of course.

A: True. I have a set power training routine I used before I got into wrestling, and I pretty well follow the same routine now whenever I get a chance to train more extensively than the routine I just mentioned. 

First in that routine is bench presses. I usually do 10 sets, working up in 2-rep jumps to my maximum. then I'll do an endurance set for pump, as I previously mentioned.

Next is the floor press. This version is a bench press done off boxes, while I'm lying on the floor. (See exercise photos above). Because of the limited motion I handle more weight, usually about 550, for 5-7 sets of 3 reps. I keep as good form as possible, for in the bench press I do not believe in arching. I tend to bound the bar off my chest, but I don't recommend this procedure to others, for it's easy to a beginner to hurt himself doing this. 

Third in my training routine is incline dumbbell presses. I do 5 sets of 5 with heavy dumbbells. At the time I was training with the amazing Karl Norberg in San Francisco I was using 150-pound dumbbells. 

Next is incline laterals, another 5 sets of 5, with 125-pound dumbbells. This finishes off my chest power work.

For my fifth exercise I go on the upright rows done in a cheating style, so I can handle extra weight. I do 6 sets of 6-7 reps with 205 pounds.

For added back and shoulder power, I next do high pulls. Again I use a cheating style, and really don't pull the weight that high, just up to waist level or a bit higher. I use 400-425 pounds, so that explains why I do 6 sets of 3-4 reps.

Seventh on my list was squats. I would do 8 , usually 3-5 reps, and work up to a maximum of 650 every workout. My best in competition was 685, by the way.

You'll note that I said "was" in my routine. I've given up squats since I began to wrestle with regularity, for I found squats to be the worst exercise for wrestling. They would affect my knees, so I would occasionally make a swift move in the ring, only to find my knee buckling under me. Since I've given them up I've found I have no more of this sort of trouble. I do freehand squats now to warm up before my matches, and find them to be perfect.

The final exercise in my power routine is the curl. I do 10 sets of 10 reps with 135 to 175 pounds. Also, I would occasionally do cheat curls with 225.

Q: That's quite a routine, Bruno. You mentioned training with Karl Norberg . . . tell us about this amazing oldster.  

A: I think 74-year old Karl is a truly amazing physical specimen. He is as enthusiastic about power training as I am, and at one time several years ago I found myself in San Francisco for three months, wrestling only one or two nights a week. Karl and I trained together over that time, and I did my best bench press ever, 565 pounds. The late Ray Van Cleef witnessed it, by the way. I followed the power routine I just outlined, with the exception of squats, and Karl kept right with me all the way. He's a great inspiration and really deserves credit for his power and zest.

!: Speaking of your wrestling and power training, how does one affect the other? 

A: Not at all. That is, I wrestle regularly and I train regularly as I can, and I feel the energy and effort expended on each doesn't affect the other. The strength you need for wrestling is a different type of strength than what you need for power training, different in the fact that it is more timing, coordination and balance.

I would say that bodybuilding is no good for wrestling . . . bodybuilding training will not give you the strength you need for the mat . . . and that power training is only a littler better. Power training will give you basic strength, which is a prerequisite for wrestling, but the two are not really related.

Of the types of weight training, I would say Olympic lifting would be the best training for wrestling, for the coordination and timing involved, especially in the Snatch, and Clean and Jerk, will help you more. As I sad, wrestling demands a different kind of power than weight training. For this reason many powerful men, such as Paul Anderson, are failures in the ring. 

Q: What were your bests in Olympic lifting? 

A: I pressed 365 . . . pressing was my best lift. In the Snatch, and Clean and Jerk, I did poorly, relatively speaking, for 270 and 370 were my best there. 

You see, I cannot lock my elbows . . . I believe this was caused by wartime malnutrition . . . so in the Snatch I would be called for pressing the weight out all the time, and in the Jerk I had to do a sort of push jerk to get the weight to a point where my elbows could hold it. Because of these elbow problems I gravitated more towards power training than Olympic lifting.

Q: Could you explain more about your remark about Anderson? That sounded interesting. 

A: Yes, Paul was actually a very poor wrestler. I wrestled against him in Atlanta, and after five minutes he was completely exhausted. His weight training had only been for short bursts with the weights, and he had neither endurance nor the quick coordination and balance for wrestling. I think the endurance work, the high reps with heavy weight, helps me more than anything else with the wrestling. 

Q: Who would you consider the most powerful person you've met? 

A: In the wrestling world, I'd say Gorilla Monsoon. Here's a man who was 6 feet 8 inches tall and weighed 392 on the scales, yet is as quick and agile as any man. When it comes to getting around the ring and applying force, he's the best. For weight lifting power, I'd say the Baillargeon brothers of Canada are the best I've seen. (Note: It's worth doing some digging to find just how "weight lifting strong" these brothers were!).

Q: What are your best power lifts?

A: In competition I've done 685 in the deadlift. I never trained on the deadlift, by the way, for I feel it's bad for the back. Also, I did a curl of 225, and a bench press of 545 with a 2-second pause in competition in 1958. The 565 effort was in the San Francisco Y.

Q: Do you think you could have done more if you hadn't gone into wrestling?

A: Yes, probably. I haven't been able to follow my power program too much over the past seven years, due to the demands of traveling for my wrestling career. The 545 bench press was done 7-8 years ago, and I think I would have hit the 600-pound mark by now if I'd kept it up. I was undefeated in my prime in the four power lifts (Note: Curl, eh), and although I certainly couldn't say I would have remained that way if I'd kept it up, I'm sure the competition would have spurred me on to better lifts.

Q: What have your gains been from your weight training?

A: As I mentioned, I started at age 16 weighing 105 pounds. I was over 200 by the time I graduated from school, was up to 230 at the time I did the 545 bench press, and today at age 29 I weigh 260. My other measurements I honestly haven't kept, except that I know my arm is over 20 inches and has been for some time.

!: Do you have any training peculiarities?

A: Well, I would say the only one is that I like to train in a very hot and humid place. Between my elbow problems and the constant wrestling, I need a thorough warmup before doing things, and with it warm and humid I really feel my best for heavy training.

Q: Do you have any other comments you'd like to make?

A: Yes, I'd like to commend my training partner in New York City, Tom Minichiello, on his excellent gym and the courtesy and service he shows his customers.

Finally, I'd like to personally thank all my fans from both the wrestling and weight training world, who've been so nice to me over the years. I owe them a debt of gratitude I'll never be able to repay.        


Monday, April 23, 2018

The Upright Rowing Motion - Cletus Snelbaker (1944)

One of the best exercises in the line of weight training movements is the upright rowing motion. It ranks very close in popularity to the continuous pull up and press, the deep knee bend, and the two hands snatch, practiced as a repetition exercise. With a slight variation, using the legs and back and handling more weight, an exercise that is usually called the high pull up, it certainly deserves a place not worse than fourth in value among all the exercises.

The upright rowing motion is exercise No. 7 in Course No. 2 of Bob Hoffman's Simplified System of Barbell Training.


It has long been included in the Advanced York barbell and dumbbell courses as Exercise No. 7 in Course No. 5.

When practiced with a barbell or pair of dumbbells strictly as an upright rowing motion, in which only the arms, shoulders, upper back and chest muscles are employed with no aid from the powerful leg and back muscles, it is a wonderful developer of the entire upper body. The neck receives considerable developmental effect, the trapezius muscles, those large and powerful muscles which extend from a position at neck to the inside of the shoulders, muscles which impart the slope to the strong man's shoulders, are primarily benefited, strengthened and developed. The deltoids, he muscles on the point of the shoulder which make the strong man inches broader, get their full share of work and development.

The regular bentover rowing motion is one of the best to develop and broaden the upper part of the back, and although this upright rowing motion calls more severely on other muscle groups, enough work is still done by the upper back muscles that noticeable development and power will result. You'll easily feel the play of the pectoral or chest muscles, particularly the upper part of this muscle. These muscles of the chest will soon become thicker, more rounded, powerful schwelling-much muscles which will be the envy of other barbell men.

And the arms are made more powerful and much larger. For the man who desires big arms this exercise is essential. The biceps of the arm is benefited, enlarged and strengthened by this movement, but the deep lying muscles of the arm, muscles hard to develop in any other way, the Brachialis Anticus, do much of the work of raising the arms and are quickly developed.

When much heavier weights are employed and the high pull up is practiced, the same muscles as in the upright rowing motion are involved, assisted by the powerful leg and back muscles, one of the very best all around exercises results. This movement is usually practiced as a separate exercise, but some lifters start with a heavy weight in the upright rowing motion and when it becomes too difficult to continue with the arms and shoulders alone, bodily movement utilizing the legs and back become a part of the exercise to complete the desired number of counts (reps). 

To perform the upright rowing motion you grasp the bar, knuckles front with the position of the hands that suits you best. As in two hands snatching some prefer as wide a grip as the length of the bar will permit, some like to hold the bar approximately at shoulder width as in the two hands press, but others use a much closer grip. Jake Hitchins always employed this close grip style, placing his hands not over six inches apart. This exercise has long been a favorite of Jake's and has played an important part in developing his more than 50 inch chest and his more than 18 inch arms. The writer of this article also prefers a comparatively close grip and has been enabled to win a number of Saturday afternoon impromptu contests in the York barbell gym with this close grip style. 

You can try the various hand positions and see which one suits you. As a development exercise you will be wise to vary your hand position at times as the muscles are brought into action in a diversified manner which develops a larger number of muscles. Great variety of movement, placing as many muscles as possible in action, developing them from every possible angle, develops the greatest strength and the best built muscles.

While good results can be had with this exercise practiced with a barbell alone, even better results can be had when a pair of heavy dumbbells, or the cables and stirrups with the upright rowing motion, are also used. Most bodybuilders are accustomed to performing the exercise with a barbell. The great advantage in using the barbell is the closeness with which the bar can be kept to the body. The width of the grip can be varied although the closer the hands are together, the easier the exercise and the more weight may be handled.

It is more difficult to use dumbbells although many experts believe a better upper arm and shoulder development results due to the fact that the position of the weights (turned in or out) may be altered to suit the individual.

The advantage to using cables with foot stirrups is the increase in resistance the further they are stretched. The effort required to perform upright rows is far greater with cables than with dumbbells, and maximum shoulder and trapezius stimulation can be realized.

Your feet should be placed a comfortable distance apart, the body held erect, the barbell started from a position against the thighs with the arms holding the weight in the style we describe as being "like ropes with hooks on the end." In other words, there is no starting tension on the arms, and as the weight is lowered in each repetition the arms should be fully extended and relaxed. The back is held rigidly straight, the weight drawn up.

There should be no swinging movement, body swaying, jerking or leaning forward and back of the trunk. The upright rowing motion should be performed entirely with the muscles of the arms and the shoulder girdle. Using other movements of the body means that the effort is being distributed and robs the arms, shoulder girdle, upper back and chest of the benefit they should obtain.

Practiced as an exercise, the movement should be done steadily, fairly slowly so that the weight can be felt every inch of the way up and down. You should breathe deeply as the weight rises, exhale completely as the bar reaches the lowest point. Perform from 12 to 15 movements (repetitions) on your usual training day. I write "usual training day" for this movement serves well with the Heavy and Light system.

With this method of training you select a weight which will permit 7 or 8 repetitions, then remove 10 or 20 pounds of the weight and after a short rest perform enough additional repetitions to make a total of 15. I sometimes perform 9 or 10 with a heavy weight, then I repeat the same poundage in a moment, and if I can make 5 or 6 repetitions, an aggregate of 15, I have completed the exercise.

The bar should be drawn high, to a position where it touches the upper chin, below the lower lip. Elbows are spread wide and raised high, so that at the completion of the movement they are as high or higher than the hands. By watching yourself in a mirror you can quickly see the muscles which are involved.

As this is one of the best movements, and because it can be performed with barbell, dumbbells, swingbell, cables and stirrups, some form of it should be a part of every day's training schedule. In fact, it is so excellent a movement that time will be well spent if it is repeated during the training session. Many days I have practiced this movement in five series (sets) of 10 each with a barbell, and when dumbbells were my only training medium I have done as many as 10 x 10 with it. No doubt you men who are advanced have already gathered that this is an excellent movement to build power and proficiency in two hands snatching and two hands cleaning.

I always liked this movement with dumbbells and I believe you will too. I usually pull the dumbbells higher than the chin height mentioned for barbell upright rowing, drawing the hands to about eye level.

If you are one who is so situated that cables are your only training medium, practice a number of sets with heavy resistance and the stirrups in this upright rowing motion. It will develop the muscles which stamp you as a man out of the ordinary. Column-like necks, sloping shoulders, powerfully developed trapezius, broad, rounded, deeply muscled deltoids, heavy upper back muscles, sweeping curve to these muscles, deep rounded pectoral muscles are only found on men who perform special exercises. So practice the upright rowing motion regularly if you wish to have an admiration-creating physique.

In having contests in this exercise you need judges, just as are required in military pressing. As in the military press, jerking too much, swaying or body movement, rising on the toes are all causes for disqualification. A judge or judges should be selected to make a decision as to the correctness of the movement. We haven't been able to inveigle our big champs, Grimek and Stanko, into an upright rowing motion contest, or probably we would find out how hopelessly we ordinary humans are outclassed by the real powerhouses.

I have been the champ of the ordinary or smaller sized York barbell men with recent hoists of 165 in this style. Judging from the fact that 150 is hard enough for me in the pull over on bench, while Steve Stanko with limited training did 310, and 225 is hard enough for me in repetition bent presses while Steve does reps with 300, we probably could expect something fabulous from these super men.

The high pull up, which owing to the greatly increased weight may be practiced as a high dead lift, only pulling the weight to waist height, or with a somewhat lighter weight but still a very heavy one to the height of the nipples, is a very beneficial movement. I usually practice this movement with 145 for 15 repetitions, drawing the weight from near the floor to chin height. This is enough to make you puff, pant and perspire, and that is what is needed to get the best results.

By putting all the muscles into a action, particularly the big muscles of the back and of the legs, which are farthest from the heart, great internal improvement is bound to result. Remember that we wrote that this pull up from floor to chin practiced as a repetition exercise is one of three weight movements made a part of the Royal Canadian Air Force training. The three are continuous pull up and press, deep knee bend, and the pull up to chin with a heavy weight.    

To sum up . . . spend more time with the upright rowing motion practiced with barbell, dumbbells, or springs and stirrups. At times use the pull up from floor to chin.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Forearm Training - Chuck Sipes (1971)

Thanks to Liam Tweed for Making This One Available! 


1) Rubber Ball Squeeze - 4 x 20

2) Dumbbell Wrist Curl -
seated, both arms across thighs, palms up:
1 x 20
add 10 lbs. - 1 x max
add 10 lbs. - 1 x max
etc. - do about 6 total sets

3) Reverse Cable Curl -
elbows in, slow cadence:
4 x 10

4) Wrist Roller - 
loaded so you can only roll 2/3 of the way up. When you get all the way up, add weight:
4 sets

5) Cheating Barbell Wrist Curl -
use heavy enough weight so you have to "cheat" by using body motion to wrist curl the bar:
6 x 8.

Supersets - Franco Columbu

Supersetting two exercises is a technique for training two muscles at the same time instead of one, here specifically two antagonistic (opposite) muscle groups. Antagonistic muscles or muscle groups are those which work against each other in a coordinated movement. For instance, the biceps is a flexor muscle and the triceps is an extensor, or muscle that extends. The biceps work to flex the elbow, while the triceps work to straighten, or extend it out again. A reasonable superset that exercises both muscles at once will produce striking results.

Properly matching the muscles is the first and most important rule of supersetting. You must select exercises that not only match, but also help balance antagonistic pairs of muscles. Sensible matches include chest/back (and, for added variety, chest/shoulders, and back/shoulders), biceps/triceps, anterior/posterior forearm muscles, anterior/posterior deltoids, quads/hamstrings, and front/back calf muscles.

Realistically, the abdomen cannot be supersetted with any other muscle group. Thus, for any training routine you devise on your own, continue your ab training . . . for example, 4 ab exercises in rotation, 4 sets of 25 reps for each exercise.

The second most important aspect of the supersets technique -- after you've decided on appropriate exercises -- is to do the two exercises with as little rest in between as possible. No rest is ideal, buy you may well find that your supersets routine requires you to decrease the weight slightly at the first several workouts; however, after a few break-in workouts you will be able to increase the weight.

Note that in the following recommended routines, the number of sets may not match exactly. For instance, I suggest 6 sets of leg extensions supersetted with only 5 sets of leg curls. I have done so by design, the objective being to balance structure and strength. Most people are stronger in the flexor muscles than in the extensors, ideally, the two should be considerably closer to equal. For a simple demonstration of this inequality, observe how much more power and flexibility you have in turning your hand down -- that is, in the direction of the palm -- than you do in turning it back toward the wrist. Your entire superset routine should follow the principle of adjusting the number of sets for certain exercises to correct imbalances in structure and strength of antagonistic muscles or muscle groups.

This program will thoroughly exercise every major muscle group twice weekly, and the abs and calves four times each.   

Monday/Thursday: Chest, Back, Shoulders, Calves, Abs.

Bench Press - 5 x 8, superset with
Chins to Back of Neck - 4 x 10 or as many reps as possible. 

Incline Bench Press - 4 x 10, superset with
Chins to Front of Neck - 4 x 10 or as many reps as possible. 

Dip - 4 x 15, superset with
T-Bar Row - 4 x 10

Flat Bench Flye - 3 x 10, superset with
Seated Cable Row - 3 x 10

Bentover Lateral Raise - 5 x 10, superset with 
Press Behind Neck - 4 x 10

Side Lateral Raise - 5 x 10, superset with 
Upright Row - 4 x 10

Calf Raise - 7 x 15, superset with 
Front Calf Raise - 4 x 15

Abs - Situp, Leg Raise, Side Leg Raise, 4 x 25 tri-set.

Tuesday/Friday: Arms, Forearms. Abs

Triceps Pushdown - 5 x 12, superset with 
Dumbbell Curl - 4 x 10

Lying Triceps Extension - 5 x 12, superset with 
Incline DB Curl or BB Curl - 4 x 10

Close Grip Bench Press - 4 x 10, superset with 
Preacher Bench Curl - 4 x 10

Triceps Pushup - 2 x 10, superset with 
One Arm Concentration Curl or Bentover Barbell Curl - 2 x 10

Palms Up Wrist Curl - 3 x 15, superset with 
Palms Down Wrist Curl - 3 x 15

Abs - Repeat Monday/Thursday Routine

Wednesday/Saturday: Thighs, Calves, Abs.

Leg Extension - 6 x 25, superset with 
Leg Curl - 5 x 25

Lunges - 3 x 25, superset with 
Squats - 5 x 10

Donkey Calf Raise - 7 x 20, superset with 
Front Calf Raise - 4 x 20 

Abs - As Before. 


Sunday, April 15, 2018

Don Peters' Leg Training - Dick Tyler (1971)

There was a moment of complete silence. I had stopped talking for a change. All that could be heard was the sound of the water in the pool gently lapping  at the sides and the music coming from the speaker system. It was one of those kinds of days. The type that makes you want to do hundreds of "reps" of stares into space and thousands of "sets" of lying down beside a pool in the summer sun.

Luckily I had been invited to go swimming in Don Peters' pool. He had just purchased a beautiful home in he San Fernando Valley and had turned two of its rooms into a home, I mean home gym. It was filled with the best in heavy duty equipment and its convenience to training when you needed to and swimming when you wanted to made the whole bit pretty fantastic. 

Don, himself, was doing even less than I was. At least I adjusted my sunglasses every once in a while. Don just looked like a dead man floating on a rubber raft in the middle of the pool. I don't know how much time he spent this way but it seemed like hours. I was startled when Don's wife called from the house. 

"The movie will be on in 15 minutes." 

"Thanks," I called back.

"You hear that don?" There was no answer. "Don?" He just kept floating silently on the waves of dreamland, blanketed by the golden California sun. I dipped my hand in the pool and shot some water on him.

"Huh," he said with a start that nearly flipped min into the briny deep. "IFBB rules. Super sets. Tri-bombing! I, I . . ." 

"C'mon, Don, it's just me." 

He laughed. "I just wanted to show that I'm loyal to bodybuilding even in my dreams. He reached for the can of protein but saw that he had knocked it into the water where it was floating like he was.

"Lucky it was empty. Say, when is the show going to be on?" he asked.

"That's why I woke you old friend. Dee just said that it'll begin in a few minutes." 

"Good," said Done. 'Just enough time to get to the side of the pool. Not that I'm lazy or anything like that. Z - Z - Z - Z - Z." 


"Huh? Super sets. IFBB, uh, oh, yeah." 

True to his word, he took quite some time to get out of the pool. We went into the living room.

"Want a game of pool?" he asked.

"Later maybe but right now I want to see the Reeves film. The movie was called "White Warrior" and it starred Steve Reeves in the best muscular shape. 

Steve Reeves in The White Warrior 

With Don's color TV set, we planned to have an even more enjoyable time. All that was missing was the peanuts and the popcorn. The film was great. Reeves was big -- real big. In fact he must have been at his greatest bodyweight. It was old-fashioned muscle for the sake of muscle. "Wow," said Don, who was wide awake by now. "Will you look at those arms!" 

While I had never thought of Reeves as being extraordinary in the arm department, this time he looked like he had tree trunks strapped to his shoulders.

At one point in the picture he bolts down a hallway in trousers that had torn pant legs. Unbelievable is the only word for the legs that Reeves had. I looked over at Don who was shaking his head in wonder. "That," he said, "is the best pair of legs ever developed by a bodybuilder." I didn't argue.

After the film we discussed what we had just seen.

"He must have been born that way," said Don.

"Well," I replied, "we both know that that isn't so. We've all seen pictures of him when he was a kid and he looked completely normal." 

"Yeah," said Don, "but he did a lot of bike riding in his formative years which it's said laid the foundation for what he built later." 

As we continued our discussion we both agreed on one basic premise. All bodybuilders can have good legs if they start soon enough and are willing to stick with it.

"Look at me," said Don. "I was a tall skinny kid as I was growing up. No one would ever have thought that I would have had any muscle much less a good leg development. I suppose you might say that I laid my foundation with sports such as football and basketball as a youngster. After I started with bodybuilding I found that my legs were one of the easiest parts of my physique to develop." 

"What's your present program?" I asked. 

"I'll show you," he answered as he got up from the chair and went into the gym.

"You're going to train now?" 

"I feel like it. After watching Reeves I feel the need." 

I knew what he meant. "Is this your leg day?" I asked. 

"Well, I work calves every day and find I get better results. I remember Reg Park saying that he felt that large calves gave a more dramatic balance to the leg, if you had to choose between thighs and calves. On top of that it takes more work to reach those denser muscle fibers of the calves." 

Don Peters' Home Gym

The Leg Routine

1) Squat - 
with the bar on his shoulders and his heels on a block, Don squatted for 1 set of 8 reps. Resting just long enough to add weight, Don then squatted for another set of 6, and then more weight added for 4. Don reduced the weight and did a set of 6. The final set of 8 reps was with the original weight. Six sets of squats, focusing on isolating the quadriceps. 

2) Leg Extension - 
10 sets of 10-15. 

3) Donkey Calf Raise - 
Next Don went to calf training, which he does every day. With me on his back for the extra weight needed, he bent at the waist and placed his toes on a high block to get a fuller extension. He did 10 reps with his toes in, then 10 with toes pointing out, then 10 with toes straight ahead. 5 sets of 30 reps, varying the toe placement every 10 reps. 

"No wonder you've got such great legs!" I said after he finished. "As long as you keep up a program like that." 

"Who knows, maybe tomorrow I'll change it." 

"What do you mean?" 

"That I train instinctively. When I feel inside that the outside won't the way it should, I change the program." 

As I left for home I began to realize why some day Don Peters would be a champion. As for me, instinctive feelings told me I would starve to death if I didn't get home soon.      


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