I Think You’ll Want To See This

PushI just found this yesterday and want to pass it on to you. For the record, I have nothing to do with this product or the people creating it. But this is the direction of the future of strength training.

If we are ever going to get out of the quagmire of ridiculous macho training advice and useless, profanity-laden “straight talk” about what constitutes productive, efficient strength training we need to get into the realm of objectively measuring what we do in the gym.

Nothing is a science without measurements and because most people in the gym grind away without recording the individual weight, total weight and elapsed time during their lifting they have zero prospect of scientific training.

This new product looks like a step in the right direction. The fact is, the foundations and cornerstones of productive strength training were laid by Isaac Newton in 1687. There are very specific laws governing the movement of mass and the components of those laws can be very exactly measured. The amount of mass, the distance it moves, the energy required to move it and the power required to move it quickly are all relevant in strength training. Measure those things and you are training scientifically. Don’t measure and you’re training blind.

These guys are looking for customers and created a nice video.

Total Digression From This News Item

The measurements I began taking in 1992 are what can be called a ‘first approximation’ of what reality is. Newton’s work notwithstanding, there is a paradox in strength training. While the work done to move 200 lbs 20 inches is the same as moving 800 lbs 5 inches it is not the same to a human weightlifter. Just try it if you don’t believe me.

Because weight is so much more significant than distance I created a Power Index formula that emphasized weight in the form: W^2 / time

For the record, I don’t think that is very exact. I actually think it should be closer to W^1.8 / time but I was trying to simplify the math to make it easier for people to calculate.

A similar phenomenon exists in the productive value of longer workouts. If one ‘set’ of lifting yields ‘Y’ benefit I think that the second set yields about 1/2 Y benefit. And the next set maybe 1/4 Y benefit – in terms of stimulating new muscle. In other words, the guy doing two sets never seems to build twice the muscle of the guy doing only one set.

I mention this because devices that objectively measure what gets done in the gym will lead to meaningful measurements of what effects different training variations have. I think my approximations will hold up pretty well. And I also believe we will need different formulas for measuring strength training in horses or dogs than we do with humans. (Maybe in horses the formula would be W^2.9, for example.)

Thanks, and be well!

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