Friday, July 17, 2009

Check out Brian St. Pierre's Blog

To steal his description from his website, "Brian St. Pierre is a young and exciting new face in the industry. His ability to communicate with people of all ages, from a multitude of backgrounds, has allowed Brian to work with young student athletes, professional athletes, and working professionals alike." I follow his articles as well as some of the other top names in the fitness industry. In order to be the best fitness professional, networking and reading other's thought on varying subjects are vitally important. Please check out his blog here, read his article about Tracey Anderson that my buddy Chance Cianciola found and then read my response below.

I first want to explain my credentials to those who are unfamiliar with the strength and conditioning world... I have my masters of science degree in Exercise Physiology and am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. I have had numerous classes in anatomy, physiology, exercise physiology, biomechanics, laborartory and research methods dealing with studying the movement of the human body, and exercise testing and prescription methods.

Completing 80-100 consecutive repetitions is not only a contraindication to muscle and bone strength and health, but it is just dangerous. In order for the body to improve strength a person needs to complete 4-6 sets of six repetitions or less (the heavier weight that the client is able to use for these lower repetition sets improves bone density). To focus on hypertrophy (the growth of skeletal muscle) a client needs to perform 4-6 sets of 8-12 repetitions. An obvious and many times used question that is raised, mainly by females, is that they do not want to get big. Females, on average, naturally have about a tenth of the testosterone that males do so it is next to impossible for a woman to get noticeably bigger without an illegal ergogenic aid (steroids). Steroids would increase a woman’s hormone levels allowing her to put on size.

Another question that could be asked is how will I burn enough calories to lose weight if I am not doing 80-100 repetitions at a time? There are multiple answers:
1. You could superset opposing muscle groups. Do a set of 12 reps on dumbbell bench press and then immediately perform a unilateral back exercise, like a dumbbell row. Your chest and anterior deltoid are resting while your rhomboids, latissimus dorsi, and biceps are performing the row, and vise versa.
2. You could superset any exercise with a core exercise like a four-point plank or Russian twist. JUST DON’T DO CRUNCHES!
3. If you workout with a partner you are going to be resting anyway while they workout. Trust me, once you get away from doing the harmfully high repetition range you will realize that you can increase the weight you are accustomed to when you workout. The weight you picked for 100 reps of arm circles is going to be a lot different then the weight you can do for 12 reps on shoulder press.
4. Performing the 6 or less reps for increased strength or 8-12 reps for hypertrophy are functionally important. You will be able to put those boxes away in your closet without help, standing up from a chair will be easier, carrying your shopping bags after you get paid will be easier, carrying groceries into your home won’t be as exhausting, doing yard work won’t be as tiring, picking up and holding your child won’t be impossible, and the list could go on forever.

I have read several posts putting down BSP for his article. He is basing his comments on fact, her methods have no scientific background, basis, or structure. Too many personal trainers today make up their own system that has no research to support it. They just do it to get noticed… they want THEIR METHOD to make headlines, but they don’t believe that using proper and safe training protocols will be enough. These trainers make up their own system and almost all the time the clients either drop out or get injured. There is a difference between carving your own training niche by being a source of motivation, encouragement, and giving your clients workouts that have your own style attached and giving your clients uneducated, harmful workouts.

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