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  • Ringworm: How to Prevent Every Athletes Worst Enemy

    Ringworm, or tinea as it’s known medically, is an infectious skin disease caused by mold like fungi called Dermatophytes. These Dermatophytes thrive on dead tissues on skin surface and follow a circular path to spread its infection outward. Combative sports participants need to take an active measure to prevent this condition, and here’s how.
  • Elicit Strength Gains: A Combat Sports S & C Workout

    Alright, so I know it gets boring to hear me go on and on about esoteric work out stuff. I know I spend more time bitching and moaning, climbing up on my soap box and ranting at you about “the influence of ego on training,” “misplaced priorities” and my general pissy-ness about the fitness industry than giving you want you want.
  • Principles of Progress No. 2 - Water

    Water. Two-thirds of the planet is covered in the stuff. It’s everywhere – plants, animals, oceans, lakes, rivers, diet coke – no wonder it’s considered essential to our lives.
  • Principles of Progress No. 1 - Sleep

    Although this series of articles is technically entitled “Strength and Conditioning for Combat Sports,” I’m going to spend some time this week discussing outside factors that affect both performance and body composition.
  • Strength vs Conditioning

    The combat sports community has made great strides in regards to embracing the world of "functional" training, and shedding the ineffective shackles of bodybuilding-style training. In that transition, though, the value of training for strength has become neglected. It is almost as though an aversion to basic, practical weight training has been cultivated in pursuit of ultimate functionality.
  • Nuts and Bolts, Part 2

    (Formerly Exercises You Should Be Doing...But Probably Aren't) The Windmill A versatile exercise that can be done using a kettlebell, barbell, dumbbell, child, warhammer, etc; the windmill has fallen out of favor with modern fitness enthusiasts due to its challenging nature and the incorrect perception that it is damaging to the spine. Just like any movement that involves movement and the hip and loading of the spine, the windmill could potentially be injurious, but only if done recklessly, with poor form and too much weight. When done with proper technique, the windmill is an invaluable movement for spinal strength and hip/lower back flexibility. Let's do it. 1. The windmill ...
  • Exercises You Should Be Doing...But Probably Aren't

    The deadlift. One of the central "slow lifts" and a mainstay in powerlifting and strongman competitions. You're probably already familiar with this movement, but we're going to break it down in a little more detail, pointing out some common mistakes, and get you pulling more than you ever imagined.
  • An Interview with Chip Conrad

    Chip Conrad is the owner and head trainer of Bodytribe, a Sacramento-based gym specializing in progressive, full-spectrum fitness. He has been active in the strength and conditioning world for over 15 years and has trained with such Physical Culture luminaries as the late Dr. Mel Siff, Dan John, Tommy Kono, Dave Tate, amongst others. He regularly blogs at his own website www.physicalsubculture.com and has written articles for www.wannabebig.com, www.elitefts.com and more. His book, Lift With Your Head and DVD Strength Rituals are available on his website or at Amazon.com . He is currently filming for his next DVD entitled Brutal Recess. USCS: Tell us a little about your gym, Bodytribe, and ...
  • The Mental Game of Strength & Conditioning

    Fitness is sorely lacking in a cerebral component. For some reason the physical has become disconnected from the mental – except, perhaps, in the most banal and superficial ways possible (“it’s all in your head” or other such painful clichés). Mass-market fitness focuses entirely on appealing to the visceral, foregoing any pretense of intellectualism and reducing its opinion of the public to a horde of slobbering idiots. Truth be told, you don’t have to be a scholar of any discipline to be fit, but it doesn’t hurt. At times it seems an impossibility to rectify strength and conditioning with intellectual pursuits, but this week we’ll talk about how it might be possible to be both the brains a...
  • Setting Proper Goals

    Recently we’ve been talking a lot about WHAT to do and HOW to do it. I thought that this week we’d take a bit of a break and dig a little bit deeper, instead discussing WHY we train and what drives us to succeed, or causes us to fail. Central to this discussion is the question of goals: what are they, how can we use them and why do we need them? It seems much simpler to walk into the gym, perform our movements of choice and leave, foregoing larger structure and pursuing the moment. Many of us train in this fashion – day in and day out, chasing some vaguely defined notion of what we want to achieve, working more on the struggle of getting into the gym, without really even considering what “th...

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