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alec_ar

Victorian Progress

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alec_ar

Hello all,

I am back and this time I'm requesting a little help. Around a half a year ago I started manna training and that inspired me to focus more on the victorian. Over the past two moths or so I have been working on this ultra difficult skill. I am also making sure to work planche and malteses plenty, so as to try to avoid any shoulder imbalances.

Obviously this is pretty preliminary stuff, I don't hope to have a real Victorian in probably years, but I've made some substantial progress with the movement and I'm excited that it may be an eventual accomplishment.

Critiques and criticisms would be appreciated on he below links. Im posting because with strength moves as hard as the Victorian, there aren't really any hashed out training methods or tutorials to work from. So ive improvised my training for it. Mainly using foot supported versions, tucked versions of sorts, as well as working high middle splits holds and manna for core strength. I would appreciate any feedback on methods that have helped other people, or any ideas for how to train to achieve a more horizontal victorian, aside from working my butt off on the move of course :mrgreen:

The first set in the video is more of a simple lean backward into the Victorian. The second attempt was more of a piked body position similar to that of Peter Derman's victorian attempt on YouTube. I hope I will continue to see progress with the Victorian and if so, will keep you guys updated! :P

Thanks again.

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Michael Traynor

Your enthusiasm is admirable. I doubt that many people here would be able to give you specific advice on training a victorian, however, I have frequented this forum for quite some time so feel as though I may as well give you the following advice that we give to many people:

Very advanced rings strength moves (for mere mortals as ourselves) Victorians, Maltese, Inverted Cross and the like, are very dangerous and should be treated with a great deal of respect.

Such advanced moves are best tackled when you have put in the necessary training, and attained the skills that lead up to them, such as Iron Cross, Straight arm forward and backward felges. Indeed, these skills in turn, shouldn't be trained until you have attained the prerequisite skills; freestanding handstand on the rings...and so on and so forth.

You may have already attained these skills but no one here is going to risk advising you to continue training Victorian without seeing form videos of these prerequisite skills (as we know how dangerous training advanced skill can be).

It is really fun to play with difficult skills, but consider how much time you do this, that you could be working the basics, building solid foundations. Remember that whenever you do play with such difficult strength moves, you risk injury.

Hope this is not too grumpy a response, if you already have freestanding XR HS, IC and Felges etc, then please post a link. If not then proceed with caution.

Michael

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alec_ar

Thank you for your response Michael. It is good to have someone with experience give me their opinion on ring training. :)

Training for something such as the Victorian or Maltese is probably jumping ahead several steps even if I am taking things slowly and progressively. I understand the risks and maybe I'm just too much of an idealist to have that hinder me. I also agree that focusing my efforts more on the basics would serve me far better in the long run. However, while I'm certainly no gymnast, and am far less conditioned than plenty of athletes, I have had a pair of rings for nearly 2 and 1/2 years and have been fooling around on them for that time period. I have progressively trained the straight arm movements for awhile now and have decent conditioning in my connective tissues. In terms of the basics that I do have down, I can do a back lever, front lever, a one legged planche on floor and rings, just recently achieved the iron cross, and can do a decent sort of "tucked manna" (my lack of flexibility really hinders me there). Im also working on lots of bent arm strength movements. If you want video evidence of any of these please let me know :mrgreen:

My confidence in pursuing the phenomenally difficult Victorian may be from recently getting the iron cross down, as that was very exciting, but I should probably take things back a step. I will continue to work the basics while still progressively training these difficult skills in a careful, slow manner. As I stated before, Ill upload anything worthy of sharing if and when I achieve it.

Thanks again Michael and the GB forum!

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Brian Li

I think victorian is a lot safer to train than the other stuff Michael mentioned like inverted cross and maltese since it doesn't really force your elbows to hyperextend just like a front lever although it still might be hard on the shoulder girdle. It is still better to keep with the basics and prerequisites first like what Michael said, but if I were to train it then I will train it cautiously and stop for recovery if some pain arises somewhere.

I think you train victorians just like how you would train malteses, but with your body facing the other way. Possible drills and exercises for victorian may be supported/assisted victorians, using easier variations like tucked, victorian body levers on 2 mats or parallettes, victorian dumbbell drills lying face down on a bench, victorian pulls on a pulley machine, leaning back from support while widening the arm angle, and lowering down from inverted hang while wideing the arm angle. Working on widening your front levers may also help too I think and of course building more strength in pulling and rowing exercises.

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alec_ar

Thank you for all of your tips B1214N! Those should be useful. Has anyone else used an inverted straight arm pelican to help develop Victorian strength, or even just to balance out the shoulder girdle and build internal rotation strength? I can post a vid or maybe a diagram if there's any confusion as to what it is. But this exercise has really been helping me. It gives you a killer burn in your rear delts. Basically, it's a straight arm pelican, like where you essentially do a locked out chest fly on the rings, but reversed so that your chest is facing the sky.

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Joshua Naterman

What you really need is to make sure you work on external rotation strength and scapular retraction strength. That's the place you will have the most potential for imbalance.

I do FL->VC pulls on free motion machines with 37.5 lbs per arm at the moment. I don't have anything like the cross trainers to make leverage good enough to do a foot supported version on rings, but I imagine that would be a good bit more difficult.

Again, be careful and put some extra time into your external rotation work and retraction strength and endurance. Victorian requires an enormous amount of internal rotation and does not balance out planche or maltese work. Be smart and take this post to heart!

Assuming you have straight arms on everything you mentioned, you have a decent straight arm strength background.

I don't know what your training history is or what you can and can not do as far as the various movements in BtGB, but your progress will probably be better if you start climbing those skill trees as well.

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alec_ar

Joshua,

I have followed your posts on this site for some time now and I highly value your opinion. You are sort of like the "guru" of knowledge on gymnasticbodies I would say. So thank you for posting advice, and I do take it to heart! I will focus more on the BtGB book, as well as my external rotation and scapular retraction strength. Your FL pulls to VC are at an impressive weight, and I hope your training is going well! And yes, all of the strength holds mentioned are with locked out arms :P

As an aside, I have managed some brief Victorian holds with the assistance of my cross trainers. Here is the link for anyone interested:

When I first bought the trainers I was barely able to hold a cross on the easiest setting. Once I got to the 8th leverage notch, it was not long before I got my first real cross. So, hopefully in time, I will reach the 8th notch on my victorian holds!

Keep training and dreaming everybody!

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Joshua Naterman

It's coming along, I would probably work on something less than a full lay at first. Probably a flat tuck.

Your body is still 30-something degrees below horizontal, which is pretty good but you will be better off building the strength in an easier position or with your feet/legs supported enough to be horizontal.

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Brian Li

Nice progress! Is the straight arm inverted pelican you were talking about a FL pull to victorian (I'm assuming you have legs supported) and yes a video of that would be nice.

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alec_ar

Haha thank you B1214N. No it is not a FL pull to VC. I do those too, but with lots of assistance and I'll say that even heavily assisted FL-->VC is the hardest thing I've ever done. A lot harder than foot-assisted ML-->PL! But anyway, the inverted straight arm pelican is still challenging, and is a good way to build strength in your VC leans as well as overall posterior delt development and internal rotation strength.

Here is the link: (I apologize for the 1 and 1/2 reps but today I'm exhausted and will probably take the next week or so off from training.

That's the basic idea. On a good day I can do about 4-5 of them and pause longer at the bottom.

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Brian Li

Thanks for sharing mirroredrain. Yea, I can't imagine how hard FL pull to VC would be, it is like a BL > ML for the back and harder. Those inverted pelicans do look like a great exercise to build strength in the posterior delts and for VC. Do you also feel a lot of triceps involvement in VC work and inverted pelicans?

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alec_ar

I definitely feel some triceps involvement, and have noticed a pretty big change in them since I started training the victorian, but it seems to be less triceps than I thought it would be. I feel it much more so in my rear delts, lats, and shoulder girdle overall. Inverted pelicans tend to be rear delt heavy but triceps as well for sure.

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alec_ar

So I am taking a couple weeks off to rest my connective tissues :wink:

Here is some quick inspiration for myself while I take a brief break, and for anyone else who cares!

It's Danny from just a couple months ago I believe, at the WC. The Victorians in this particular routine are probably the best VCs I've seen him or anyone do. His alignment seems to be so much better these days. His body is laid out, his hips are high, and the overall execution is so strong! Can't wait to see him in London!

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alec_ar

So I took a little time off to let my body rest and I am continuing training once again. I did some Victorian leans today and, while I'm still obviously far from the final position, I feel stronger in the leans than I did a few weeks ago. Here's to hoping that progress continues steadily!

Keep training and keep dreaming guys!

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Joshua Naterman
So I took a little time off to let my body rest and I am continuing training once again. I did some Victorian leans today and, while I'm still obviously far from the final position, I feel stronger in the leans than I did a few weeks ago. Here's to hoping that progress continues steadily!

AYGZ7BF5fNg

Keep training and keep dreaming guys!

That's pretty boss-tastic, keep up the good work!

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Falcon

I have to agree with Josh.

By the way, you have your straps set the wrong way! Watch out! The buckle can break!

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Joshua Naterman
I have to agree with Josh.

By the way, you have your straps set the wrong way! Watch out! The buckle can break!

Great eye! I totally missed that.

Please fix your straps, that could definitely go poorly.

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alec_ar

Thanks for noticing that you guys! But I have no idea howto fix them. If I adjust the buckle the other way it doesn't stay together, it just slips out. This is how I've always had them! Maybe their a different design? I hope? Either way Ill re-investigate later.

Here is my progress as of now:

I'm also making sure to continue my strength training in other areas, but I can tell I'm potentially in need of some shoulder balancing. Anyone know any good external rotation exercises? I don't know nearly enough about anatomy...

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John Cook
Thanks for noticing that you guys! But I have no idea howto fix them. If I adjust the buckle the other way it doesn't stay together, it just slips out.

On the side of either buckle of my set of XTreme Rings there is a stamped arrow indicating how to insert the strap and instructions that read "FEED WEB"- Check out your set... you may have overlooked this. :) -john

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alec_ar

My rings are actually from muscledriver USA, not Xtreme Rings, because I got them before I even knew of this website! So I checked out the buckle and apparently they're set right. Thanks for the heads up though you guys. Falling on your butt in the VC would NOT feel good on your tailbone me thinks.

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alec_ar

Oh, and on top of the exercises that strengthen the external rotators, does anybody know any decent shoulder retraction exercises or movements? All this planche and Victorian leaning has increased my protraction strength considerably but my retraction is much less developed. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I feel like I should be prehabbing my shoulders a lot more :lol:

Thanks in advance.

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seiyafan

Any exercise that involves squeezing your shoulder blade should do, like a barbell row.

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alec_ar

Thanks seiyafan! I don't typically do weights but weighted bodyweight rows should work great! Also, when I do front lever rows it feels like there's an intense contraction of the shoulder blades. Is this true?

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Rik de Kort

"Weighted bodyweight rows should work"

"Do front lever rows do the same thing"

Of course they do, dummy. :P They're a row without feet support.

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alec_ar

I know the question sounded stupid 8) but in a front lever, aren't the scapular supposed to be protracted? If so, then I wasn't sure of they were supposed to stay protracted during the row.

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