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Why Body Weight Strength Training Is The Key To Developing Animal Like Power And Might

Body weight strength training is the best and surest path in order to develop animal like strength and might. As I have pointed out elsewhere on this site any animal in nature possess strength and endurance that would put any human being to shame. The reason this is so, I believe, is because by instinct they are constantly training with nothing but their own bodyweight. Evolution and mother nature ensure that by doing so they will be at their absolute best. If you could train a gorilla to follow a "Man Made" exercise program like weight lifting would he be any stronger than other gorilla's? The answer is no. In fact he would be far weaker.

Consider The Gymnast

body weight strength image
To illustrate this point let's put our animal brethren aside for a moment and consider one of the most animal like athletes we have, namely the gymnast. In order to develop and maintain their incredible natural strength they seldom if ever lift a weight. Rather they are constantly engaged in body weight strength training to one degree or another.

A Gymnast Tries Weight Lifting

I've been reading a book entitled "Building The Gymnastic Body" by Christopher Sommer. Mr. Sommer is currently the National Team Coach for the American Junior Gymnastic team. Prior to coaching he was also a gymnast himself. In his book he relates the story of the day he gave up gymnastics as a competitor in order to move into coaching. When this happened he decided to try other forms of training like running and weightlifting. He remembers the first time he stepped into a gym to try weight lifting. There were his results:

  • Double bodyweight dead lift (This is a terrible exercise, btw)
  • Military press with 110% bodyweight
  • Chins with 50% of his bodyweight for reps
  • Dips + 60% of his bodyweight for reps
  • 75 pushpus in 1 minute
  • wrist curls with 110% bodyweight
  • Run a mile in 5:37 seconds / 11:30 two-mile run
  • Ran 20 miles on the spur of the movement.

Lessons Learned - And Ignored

Remember, Mr. Sommer's had not even touched a weight prior to this. Given that, these results were nothing less than amazing. With no prior experience Mr. Sommer was absolutely smoking every weight lifter around him. The obvious conclusion from this is that Mr. Sommer's prior program of gymnastic body weight strength training was incredibly effective and far better than the weight lifting. If anything you would have thought the weight lifters in attendance that day would have given up the iron game in order to take up gymnastic training themselves. However this is not the conclusion Chris came to. Instead he decided that if he was this strong without ever having lifted a weight in his life, imagine how strong he's be if he started weight lifting full time!

Learning The Hard Way

At any rate Mr. Sommer dedicated himself to weight training with the same passion that he had once applied to gymnastic body weight strength training. What were the results? In his own words, "I got sore, stiff, slow, tired and my athletic ability, after slight initial gains, was not only not improving, but was beginning to slip." Or put another way, he was getting WORSE in all areas. He was NOT getting stronger or healthier from weight training. If anything it was wearing his body down and aging him prematurely. Once Chris realized this he immediately went back to his previous routine of bodyweight training and he found himself improving again almost immediately.

Building Real Animal Like Strength

From this story I think the conclusions are fairly obvious. If you want to build the strength and power of the animals in nature. If you want to put your weight lifting friends to shame, the key is to follow a program of Body Weight Strength Training like I teach in my ebook "Natural Fitness". Nothing else even comes close.

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