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Longshanks

Are full planche and lever possible at 6''5'?

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Longshanks

Hi Ive started training the first basic progressions in the last couple of months and just wanted to get a realistic time frame in mind for these progressions. I understand tall people have a lot of extra leverage so just thought I'd see if there's anyone on this forum my kinda height that can pull off these feats? And how long have you trained for? I realise it's gonna be a long haul but would be nice to have a idea :?:

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Coach Sommer
Are full planche and lever possible at 6''5'?

It is more difficult for the very tall to become extremely proficient in gymnastics, but it can be done. However rather than selecting a particular skill, and then being determined to achieve it regardless of whether or not you are physiologically suited for it, my recommendation is to experiment freely and find out where your particular individual strengths lie.

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Alexander Shatilov just won the bronze medal on floor at the 2009 World Championships, at a height of 6'1". Notice that he doesn't fight his height, but rather chooses skills in which his height is not a factor. For example, all of his multiple flipping skills are done in a tuck position rather than laid out. This avoids the rotational problems which would be encountered if at his height he attempted to force himself to perform the twisting double layouts performed by the much shorter athletes. Because of this thoughtful approach, he outperformed many athletes who traditionally were considered to have an enormous advantage over him size-wise in tumbling.

Here are some other examples of the gymnastics Alexander is capable of at 6'1";

,
,
,

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Longshanks

Wow he's an agile guy, very explosive flips! Does anyone know how he fairs with the static strength stuff though? I'm training for mixed martial arts you see. I realise the explosive leg work will help my Thai-boxing enormously but I'm curious about the reasonable limits of static strength in tall gymnasts. I need tonnes of static upper body strength for the Ju-jitsu you see to resist and fight for locks.

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Nick Van Bockxmeer

well your static strength is bound to increase and this is surely the best way to do it.

as for the limits I am unsure.

Holloway.jpg

supposedly this guy could hold a front lever at 6'6. I myself am 6'2 but am not yet close to full levers or planches. I am aiming for solid straddle levers by the end of the (australian) summer break so like february.

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heinrich

I'm also 6"2'. I started to train the levers about a half year ago and today my advanced tuck levers are about 20 seconds.

Get your weak links (wrists, elbows, rotator cuff) ready and start working out!

You don't need a FULL frontlever or FULL planche to be strong. You will gain plenty of strength while working your way through the progressions!

If someday you end up in straddle Planche I guess you will be much stronger than a small guy of 5" XY' who is able to hold a full Planche.

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Longshanks

Think I'd be more than happy with straddle planche and lever. If I manage to push past that it's a bonus but I think I'll live without. Thats guy seems a hell of a lot more wiery than me aswell so at 230 pounds and about 15% BF Ive probly got all the muscle I need. Just need to shed a few pounds and drill the CNS activation. Thanks again for the help

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Blairbob

John Gill was a rock climber and they tend to go the skinnier way of life. Sometimes, very skinny like him who looks like a tall endurance athlete (except more slim).

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Joshua Naterman

At 6'2, 225 I am almost exactly your size. I've been training with the gymnastics since February, and a few months ago I could do a full lay front and back lever. I could also hold a somewhat decent straddle planche for 2-3 seconds. My tendons weren't ready for the strain so I am rehabbing from some pretty painful tendonitis, and at this point I am starting to be able to train for the planches again. I have a solid straddle front lever again, and I haven't re-started back lever training yet. Don't give up hope, you absolutely CAN do it.

I used to fight, I'd go around 50-50(Wearing Gi, with no gi it was damn hard for anyone to handle me) with the jujitsu blue belts after a month of training jujitsu, even being outweighted by 50 lbs most of the time. Obviously this improved as my technique got better, but most of why I could go with them was that I could simply overpower them. This training here helped tremendously with my fighting ability, so if you are questioning the intelligence of undertaking gymnastics training as part of your overall regimen, I'm telling you from experience that you are doing the right thing.

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Kenneth Manning

I'm also 6'2", 195 lbs. I've been using the BtGB training since late January 09. I'm currently able to do a full back lever, a 10 second hold in the straddle front lever, and just recently, a 5 second hold of the front lever half lay. My planche work is way way behind (still working on a solid hips-shoulder height tuck planche).

Like everyone here says, just keep working through the progressions, you'll get there.

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Longshanks

Thanks for the posts slizzardman and killroy7. Its very inspiring to hear that there is hope! I had the same problems over a year ago with tondonitis in nearly every bloody joint (L knee, both achiles, both elbows and both rotator cuffs) from overtraining in a massive way trying to juggle fighting and weights. Thats how I came across gymnastics realy, started doing isometrics few months ago for physio which worked like a dream when everything else wouldn't. I read somewhere that gymnastics has a strong isometric element and wouldn't touch a barbell now! Think I'll have to make sure Im conservative about my training and stick to the 8week cycles if you can get tondonitis from this training aswell. I do a lot of pre-hab and warm ups though and my injuries have got loads better since Ive been doing this training so far.

How did you juggle both slizzardman so you didnt overtrain? Did you do the isometrics at the end of a fighting session and have full rest days or do em on separate days to the BJJ?

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Joshua Naterman

You have to have separate workouts, and your fighting workouts should be mostly reaction work.

I don't currently fight, but when I did I had separate weight workouts, gymnastics work, and fighting skill work. All separated by 4 hours. If weight work was heavy, gymnastics and fighting training was light, focusing specifically on half-speed reactions, both standing and ground. If weight work was light I did full speed training, with specific position to position transfers. For example, moving in from start position to close/clinch. Various methods depending on how I was attacked or defended against. I prefer attacking weapons directly, so I do everything I can to injure a hand/arm/shoulder/wrist/leg/knee/ankle/foot with feet, knees, elbows, fists, open hands and my head, with the specific intent of breaking/maiming. Without malicious intent, your attacks will not be as effective.

I take what could be called a hyperviolent approach to fighting. I am controlled and patient, but everything I do is with the intent to ruin my opponent's body. I don't stomp feet blindly, I specifically go for big toe joints with my heel and the small bones on the outside. I don't block punches, I elbow them. Etc, etc. This style is very hard to defend against, but you have to do a lot of reaction work to be truly effective, because once people realize you work this way, you have to draw attacks. The good thing is that people are scared of me, so they unconsciously surrender control of the ring. That is also practiced. I do not allow circling, period. That, all by itself, completely ruins most game plans. When I attack, I am a technically proficient fighter with animal tactics, and I aim for the most pain and damage, not the most hits. I will intentionally elbow the back of your shoulder joint and uppercut the bottom of your tricep. If I can hammerfist a collarbone I will. As I disable the body, the knockout/submission gives itself to me freely. I just follow what I consider to be the true laws of combat, and I don't waste my time with training that makes me tired without directly improving fighting ability. A lot of the stuff done out there is stupid and a waste of time in my opinion, and I can bring the superior ability to prove my point.

Anyhow, it's like anything else. You have to control how much energy you expend. You can learn more by going quarter speed and refining your ground technique(and use far less energy) than you can by constantly sparring at 100%. Same goes for every other part of the game. If you have had problems with tendonitis/osis then you need to make sure you are doing prehab and rehab for all of it, as well as specific strengthening for the joint musculature. The gymnastics will take care of some of that, but for what you need you are going to get better results with more than just gymnastics.

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Longshanks

Sounds like a lot of JKD and distruction principles, I like it! My first trainer fights a lot like that, every dirty trick in the book. Doesn't have many friends though! haha.

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Joshua Naterman

I do :) How I live in moments of violence is in fairly stark contrast to how I live my life in general :) I love people, love the world, and eat lots of spinach :P But there is no room for fairness or friendship in the ring. When you go in there, you put your life at risk. Knowing that my life is on the line, I intend to be the one doing the killing, and I want to do it as fast and efficiently as possible. Usually that involves a lot of pain, because pain distracts the opponent from the end that is coming. It is not nice, and I think it is unfortunate that people have forgotten what life is at its most simple, underneath the thin veneer of modern civility. Understanding that brings a sense of wonder at the lives we are able to live today.

I don't know about specific styles, to be honest a lot of what I have developed is instinctive and based on my knowledge of the body and pain reactions. It's surprisingly simple, really. The body curls up around pain. The end :P I suppose, in that respect, that my intent is similar to the intentions that Bruce Lee had in his efforts to develop himself as a fighter. Like him, I hate putting names to things because it destroys that open, inquisitive mindset that spawns new and sometimes effective methods of combat.

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Erik Sjolin

You'll be able to get it. I'm 6' 6", so I kind of have the same issue as you. But if Jim Holloway could hold a full one for that long, I think you or I could as well. Still working on my back lever (got a straddle for the first time yesterday), but still nowhere near being close to a tuck planche. I guess it's all about how hard you train.

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Longshanks

Jeet Kune Do (JKD) wasnt a martial art. It was the principal Bruce Lee taked about, which is in essence what you're saying. Do whatever works, irrespective of morals. He wasn't particularly against putting names to things. He was just all for dipping your toe in a bit of all styles and taking from each what works best for you. In that respect I use my legs a lot just because of the simple distace you can put between you and your aponent. Thanks for the heads up Eric. Best of luck with your straddle mate.

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Guest cccp21
I do :) How I live in moments of violence is in fairly stark contrast to how I live my life in general :) I love people, love the world, and eat lots of spinach :P But there is no room for fairness or friendship in the ring. When you go in there, you put your life at risk. Knowing that my life is on the line, I intend to be the one doing the killing, and I want to do it as fast and efficiently as possible. Usually that involves a lot of pain, because pain distracts the opponent from the end that is coming. It is not nice, and I think it is unfortunate that people have forgotten what life is at its most simple, underneath the thin veneer of modern civility. Understanding that brings a sense of wonder at the lives we are able to live today.

I don't know about specific styles, to be honest a lot of what I have developed is instinctive and based on my knowledge of the body and pain reactions. It's surprisingly simple, really. The body curls up around pain. The end :P I suppose, in that respect, that my intent is similar to the intentions that Bruce Lee had in his efforts to develop himself as a fighter. Like him, I hate putting names to things because it destroys that open, inquisitive mindset that spawns new and sometimes effective methods of combat.

******** Nice post! I am involved in LIma Loma myself and with a little boxing background in my youth i am finding this gymnastics conditioning to be vey very useful. Especially the strength of the core musculature and it's transference to life and sport in general.

Brandon Green

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St.Michael

being that you are that tall. I am wondering what your weight is and what you started with as exercises. I am 6 2 and wanting to get into this. I must say though I am a big big boy. But I will be cutting weight and have already started on my L sits, wall walking and pull ups/chin ups. what have you guys been working on? I don't have a gym to work in. Just a crappy pull up tower and some push up bars.

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Richard Duelley

I am 6' and started my training a year and half ago and weighed in at 195+. I am now 155 and am very, very lean due a nice strict diet (the diet was the HARDEST thing I have done). I am currently trying to gain mass so I loosened my diet a little bit (but not much). I started by just trying to get more than a single pull up in a row and more than 3 dips in a row :shock: . Grease the Groove was a great protocol for me when I first started. I also did a few basic lifts, like dead lifting (started at 100lbs :shock: ), and overhead squats (with a broom stick. . . barely!) just to get some kind of foundation started and I only had a weight set available at my home so I couldnt really do gymnastics specific stuff. When I got back to school in August 2008 I started gymnastics seriously, I got Coach Sommers book and created my first SSC. I worked L-sits, mostly and it took me a few months to get my first muscle up. I would then just do as many muscle ups as I could every time I walked into the gym along with tons of wall handstand work. I only could do 1 a day for a long time and then I slowly started getting more and more until I could put together sets and actually use them as a training tool. Looking back I wish I did more backlever and front lever work because I am now playing catch up with my back lever, and my front lever I still dont really work as often as I should.

Now I focus mainly on hand balancing and all my conditioning is focused around building max strength. I only use backflips and front flips for leg conditioning and endurance work, I am not that big into tumbling so I just dont work it.

That’s my story in a nutshell. The best thing you can do is just start working . . . and learn as much as you can about training, nutrition and your own body.

Check my signature for links to my hand balancing log on Idos forum. I have a few programming things in the log along with my random ramblings about how I am doing and what I am working on.

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St.Michael

awesome pictures man.

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Longshanks

Its ace to hear more and more people are lanky sods like me! I thought it was fairly taboo in gymnastics but guess I was wrong. Thanks for the feedback nifty, I realy didnt realise planche and lever work had THAT MUCH of a crossover onto stuff like deadlifts, thats ace! St.Michael, I was ion the same boat a couple of months ago and just started the handstand, planche, lever work and got great results. Since then Ive added a lot of other stuff in so as not to get any weak spots. This is what Im doing now if you're interested

15mins stretching + Shoulder and wrist pre-hab work

Isometric L-flys (against door frame) - 30s

Grip strength on bar - 30s *2 (Supination/protation)

Isometric squats (back against door) - 30s*2

Isometric Hamstring curl

(against pull-up bar at knee level) - 20s*3

Front lever (Advanced tuck) - 15s*4

Back lever (Advanced tuck) - 15s*4

Headstand - 30s*2

Handstand - 20s*3

Advanced frog stand – 10s*6

Hanging-L - 15*2

Straddle sit - 15*2

Finger holds (press up position on fingertips) - 20s*3

Think I might have to take a leaf out of niftys book and watch the food though, although my arms/shoulders are getting a lot stronger looking I could do with a few inches off the waist to make them levers a bit easier! lol

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kickwell

Wow, Nifty! I looked through your photos - your elbow lever is looking great!

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Richard Duelley
Wow, Nifty! I looked through your photos - your elbow lever is looking great!

Thanks, I do them everywhere now. I recently took a hike and did a few on top of some sweet rock outcrops. . .no pics though but a few other hikers and my friends enjoyed the impromptu balancing act. :mrgreen:

Its ace to hear more and more people are lanky sods like me! I thought it was fairly taboo in gymnastics but guess I was wrong. Thanks for the feedback nifty, I realy didnt realise planche and lever work had THAT MUCH of a crossover onto stuff like deadlifts, thats ace!

Think I might have to take a leaf out of niftys book and watch the food though, although my arms/shoulders are getting a lot stronger looking I could do with a few inches off the waist to make them levers a bit easier! lol

The guy who won bronze on FX at the World Championships a few weeks back was a little over 6 feet tall if I recall correctly :mrgreen:

About the deadlifting, I started at 100 pounds in May of 2008, On October 8th 2008 I pulled 185, I continued with 185 till the end of october and I then stopped deadlifting all together and just did gymnastic work. I pulled 315 twice on October 5, 2009, which is 5 lbs over double my body weight. :mrgreen: So in about a year of not lifting I improved my numbers quite a bit!

I have all of this (through about Oct 08) written out and scanned in:

http://good-times.webshots.com/photo/22 ... 7946GAKipT

Just keep clicking to the next picture and you can see all of my GTG work and then my lifting records, with a few notes, and then at the end of October 2008 I had a nasty case of tendinitis in my right shoulder, which I still watch like a hawk!

I have found diet is the KEY factor in my performance, if I eat crap I perform like crap, my recovery goes out the window and everything seems to fall apart.

Ok I have to catch the bus in a few minutes, Nifty out!

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Erik Sjolin

They are absolutely possible, which I found out much to my surprise yesterday in my dorm's gym. Oddly enough, this happened immediately after returning from a two week holiday (where I had no pull up bar to practice on). I got into a German Hang, pulled my legs back, and held a full back lever for two seconds (half lay for five). Sadly, I couldn't do it again.

Also (I think I may have said it earlier) I'm 6' 6" and 175-80 lbs.

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Joshua Naterman

Great work Erik!

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heinrich

Congratulations Erik!

When did you start training levers?

At 6' 6" you'll need A LOT of space once you arrive at full 360-Pulls :mrgreen:

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