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Vance Newgard

"Minigym" type with weight? Arkaev & Suchilin

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Vance Newgard

I do the courses here but am very much into the science of training all sports up to the highest level. I was reading Gymnastics How to Create Champions by Arkaev and Suchilin http://www.amazon.com/How-Create-Champions-Methodology-Gymnastics/dp/1841261416 if you want to see what the book looks like and since I am not in that world and Arkaev seems to use language used in the east it can be hard to dissect some parts. In the planning section on page 190. Workout 16 "The sixteenth part is devoted to developing the strength of specific muscle groups. For this we use strength training apparatus of the 'minigym' type with a weight of up to 50kg. He repeats the exercise 10 times" Has anyone read this book and know what he is talking about? I couldn't think if it was a ring trolley, its not the low rings because he talks about that in the next section with a weight belt, maybe a low pull-up bar with weight?. Any idea?

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Kate Abernethy

Fortunately on page 387 there is a picture with the yellow 'Minigym' devices in the background. :)

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Vance Newgard
12 minutes ago, Kate Abernethy said:

Fortunately on page 387 there is a picture with the yellow 'Minigym' devices in the background. :)

Oh OK mystery solved. He is referring to weight machines. Who knew the russian gymnasts were doing some bro training.

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Fabio Pinna
On 30/4/2016 at 5:19 PM, Vance Newgard said:

Who knew the russian gymnasts were doing some bro training.

The russians in general are well known to do a lot of bodybuilding-style training. Gymnasts and olympic weightlifters especially, but also figure skaters and circus artists (who train very similarly to gymnasts), and then boxing, swimming, fencing and judo - to name those where I've had personal experience in training with russian athletes.

I have been told by a very well known russian handstand artists that I had small arms and that they were inadequate to support my weight. He then prescribed bicep curls to fix that... and told me that I would have better stopped training my legs entirely (and stop using my bike as well), as they were way too big to do handstands. Interesting theories, huh?

That only applies to men, tho. Women, I've been told, should spend the better part of their days working on flexibility. Resistance training for them is frowned upon.

I personally am not a fan of russian methodology in modern technique sports. I get the impression that they are still stuck at what they were doing a couple of decades back, but those methods are not aging well - as demonstrated by their decline in those sports where they once dominated everything (gymnastics and olympic lifting, mostly). Modern methods trump repetition, as it seems.

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Cole Dano
Quote

I personally am not a fan of russian methodology in modern technique sports. I get the impression that they are still stuck at what they were doing a couple of decades back, but those methods are not aging well - as demonstrated by their decline in those sports where they once dominated everything (gymnastics and olympic lifting, mostly). Modern methods trump repetition, as it seems.

That had more to do with the collapse of the Soviet system than training methodologies. 

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Vance Newgard

I agree with both of you. A lot of the reduced performance since the late 80s has to do with the reduced funding in the Olympic sport programs and an overall reduction in interest towards amateur sports in general. I also agree that we have learned a lot since the Soviet era and it isn't wise to treat texts written about the programs to be treated like The Bible. Just take the things that still hold true. I know the Russians always believed that strength and technique were not independent of each other and technique depended on strengthening each individual muscle so I am not surprised that he might say your shoulders aren't strong enough to perform handstands. True or not. And I agree that Russian coaches are worshiped in this country just because they are Russian. I am an international level Olympic weightlifting coach and people will pay $400 dollars to hear a seminar from Russian athletes that can't spell science let alone teach it and their are plenty of great American coaches offering services almost free who are ignored. We have coaches just as good and knowledgeable as theirs

 

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Fabio Pinna

 

Very good point, Cole, but I think that the fall of the USSR doesn't exclude what I'm saying - as Vance also points out. Let's say that, in the eastern block, they suddenly had much more pressing matters to attend to, and further developing their technique and methods was suddenly less important :-) It's also interesting to see that the decline was not limited to ex USSR, but also to other nearby countries - one above all: Romania.

I have the luck of being close friends with a number of elite Italian gymnasts, and they all agree: Russian method is based on repeating, repeating, repeating, and then having as much muscle as they are able to. I've not had a lot of experience in training under russian gymnasts, but the little I've had confirms this, so far. Nowadays, with the internet and more affordable travel, methods and techniques are now more widely available to everybody, and just investing the time in it is not enough anymore. In fact, it's often detrimental - overtraining is a serious thing, after all. Thus now we know that training smart is better than simply training hard. I wouldn't be surprised if Russian elite coaches still trained their athletes that way, but I have no direct experience on the matter, so I'll gladly accept any correction from more knowledgeable people.

As a side note, my experience in circus is what strongly convinces me that this theory might be true - Russian circus was very influenced by the way they trained gymnastics, and modern acrobatic circus has been, for a while, lifted straight from the Russians.

Vance, I am no international coach, but I completely agree with what you wrote :-) you misunderstood me on one thing tho: I haven't been told to train my shoulders, but my arms, and specifically my biceps, and not for strength, but for hypertrophy. If there's some truth on that, I wouldn't know - all the best handstand artists I know are thin as sticks (albeit with huge shoulders...). By pure chance, I was present at a seminar held by Klokov in Italy last year, and I was surprised at how much emphasis he was putting on simply being huge everywhere, and how much time he wanted us to spend doing bodybuilding stuff - he too, especially loved bicep curls! And of course, from that day on, everybody in that gym is doing bicep curls after their weightlifting training :-) Being a weightlifting noob, I don't know how good a coach Klokov is, but he surely has a commanding presence. and gave us the impression of knowing his craft. Of course, being a good athlete is no indicator of being a good coach, but the general public is sadly easily swayed by how cool you look... and being russian automatically makes you look cooler to a lot of people :-) this is a sad truth in any technical skill, I guess. (Oh, and I'm not bashing on Klokov, I sincerely have no way of knowing if he's a good coach or not)

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Vance Newgard

I like Klockov. I think he is a good teacher and I agree with what he teaches. I even purchased his book from Juggernaut because I am open to learn and exchange information with anyone.But still it comes right from the sports schools he grew up in and are in line with the Soviet manuals that you can purchase. I think he helps the lifters he works with in gyms around the world so I am not taking anything away from him. He is the real deal and a professional. In the end it is most important to find a quality coach who will work with you on a daily basis and have your best interests in mind. We have those coaches in the U.S.

I am much less schooled in gymnastics and will take your words as truth.

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