Showing posts from January, 2013

Shoulder training

Q:Just wanted to say thanks for the article. My shoulders are my weakest point. I started in the gym 4 months ago, but I'm working them hard and keen to make progress.

So your article was very interesting for me. Thanks! By the way what do you think of the standing military press for shoulders? I've heard that it's bad for your back, compared to the seated one. I also saw a guy doing behind-the-head seated military press. Is the idea that this one is better for the middle/rear delts, compared to in-front? Cheers

My Answer: The military press is not inherently bad for your back. I prefer the standing military press as opposed to the seated version, because the standing version will engage your whole entire body. The problem is that people use crappy form and start overarching their backs. They don't know how to tighten their abs and lats and push the barbell up in a straight line with their torsos. Form and posture are very important for the standi…

Kei Nishikori - Next Asian Tennis Player Poised for a Breakout?

The 2013 Australian Open tennis tournament has gotten underway. I guess the last great Asian male tennis player to hit the scene was Thailand's Paradorn Srichaiphan, whose world tennis ranking peaked at 9th. He's done well and played competitively against better known and higher ranked players like Andy Roddick, Rafael Nadal, and others.

Although, in some circles, Paradorn is best known for having married Natalie Glebova, Miss Universe 2005 (at right). While I'd still like to see an Asian American follow in Michael Chang's footsteps, we now have Kei Nishikori from Japan (pictured below) to represent.

There have been great inroads by the Chinese women into the tennis world. Players like Li Na, who won the French Open; and Zheng Jie just knocked Aussie home girl Samantha Stosur out in yesterday's match. Where are the Asian men? What are they doing? I know it's tough to break into the pro ranks but there needs to be more visibility and guys willing to try. Th…

Maximum Number of Sets Per Workout

Q: "Greetings. I finally got your excellent book today all the way here in Japan. It was well worth the price! It seems really geared to the more experienced lifter. After reading your book, I think I need to start from scratch. I liked your training splits (A was my favorite) and exercise selection. But, I have no idea how many sets and reps to use; especially someone who is starting as a false beginner.

"Great job!  Looking forward to your next book."

My Answer: Well first, thanks very much for purchasing my book! Glad you liked it. To answer your question, if you've chosen split A, then determining the number of sets will be simple:

Do no more than 20-24 total sets per workout.

For the full body workouts, do 3 sets per bodypart. So if you've chosen 8 body parts (chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps, quads, hamstrings, and calves), at 3 sets each, that will total 24 sets. 24 sets will keep you under an hour and away from the overtraining zone.

For the upper …

Training the Feminine Figure

Q: Hello, I am a 29 year old Asian female, and I would like to try your ectomorph program. I am petite and toned, and would like to add more muscle to my physique.

Thank you, 

My Answer: The Hypertrophy Training for the Ectomorph will add some size to you, but keep in mind the exercises highlighted in the program were meant for male lifters. As a woman you may have different physique goals. Hard to say what your goals may be, since you didn't mention them. You mentioned adding more muscle mass, but what muscles do you need to build and for what reason?

In Tactics and Strategies there is a chapter on strength training for women. I mention three body types, and how to train and diet according to your body type: A, T or O. Since you're petite, then you probably have either an A or T body type. If you have an A body type, then you're pear-shaped and need to develop upper body mass. If you have a T body type, then you need to develop lower body mass. Either way, g…