Results tagged “muscle control”

Ray Hulm
Ray Hulm.
I love hearing everyones' fitness backgrounds, it's always fascinating to hear how someone got started. Here's how Ray Hulm began his own training journey.


Hi Scott, Thanks for the newsletter.

I thought that my training background might interest you.

I trained as a teenager for a few years but like so many of us got sidetracked into other things (work as well as sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll) although I never lost interest and always intended to make a comeback. I eventually started training again in my mid thirties getting very involved in martial arts as well as weight training. Being tall and slim I was always a hard gainer but never lost heart for the simple reason that I always enjoyed the training for its own sake. I will be 72 in September, still hard at it and don't intend ever stopping. I spent some very happy times in gyms over the years but preferred the old fashioned blood, sweat and liniment establishments to the modern chrome and potted plants version. These days I train at home. This piece I wrote for my blog a while back might amuse you.

I train for 1/2 hour everyday hitting the weights three times a week and a mixture of calisthenics, a bit of muscle control and a martial arts stretching routine on the other days.

That, combined with a good hike in the country once a week and tending our allotment keeps me reasonably fit. On the weight days I do Floor Dips, D/B Press 3x10, Curl 3X15, One arm Clean and Jerk 5 singles. I also have some 5lb club hammers that I like to whirl around for 25 reps.

To the overwhelming majority of athletes who don't have championship potential I would just say this, train for fun and reap the benefits.

Good luck,


Cheers Ray, greatly appreciated.

So you can lift weights? Big deal. So can my grandma. What can you really do?

So you can lift heavy weights? I'm impressed, but your average person doesn't know the difference between 225 and 800 lbs on the squat. They're both beyond his ability and heavy.

I don't want to knock weightlifting, though it may sound like I am. I lift weights and think everyone should too. The benefits are numerous.

But I want to encourage you to do something more. To add in some more skill into the mix. To do things that may inspire the average person to want to do it too.

I'm talking about things like feats of strength, kettlebell juggling, crazy bodyweight feats, hand balancing and acrobatics. Things which I enjoy doing.

Don't think that these are just party tricks either. Although skill may be involved (skill is involved even in basic weightlifting exercises in case you didn't know), they require strength and more. The benefits of many of these skills extend to endurance, coordination, balance, mobility and more. Things that many weightlifters may be lacking.

Don't take my word for it. Legendary Strongman George Jowett wrote back in 1930 on the subject of hand balancing:

No doubt you will have noticed that invariably all hand balancers have splendidly formed arms and each has a firm powerful hand clasp.

I have found that hand balancers on the whole have a more perfectly formed arm - particularly the forearms and wrist- than the weight lifter.

The hand balancer employs the hand and wrist much more than does the lifter of weights and what is more interesting, he employs the arm muscles as well as the grip in many unusual ways- ways not possible to the exercise fans who handle weights only.

No doubt knowledge of this diversified method of development is what makes the mass of European strength athletes so partial to the practice of hand balancing.

The average American strength athlete could practice this valuable pastime of hand balancing more consistently than he does.

True back then and even more so today.

Maxick (Max Sick) - SttB Articles

Gymnast, strongman and performer Max Sick (better known as 'Maxick'). For a rare video treat, check this out.

Following a recent comment by Jason Bray, here's a great exercise for the Stomach Vacuum.

Maxalding Video - SttB Articles

Otto ArcoVia the Diesel Crew comes a great video find [streaming, 28.5 mb .avi via KeepVid] of the Maxalding founders, Max Sick and Monte Saldo. The video also showcases the talents of Edward Aston, Eugen Sandow and Otto Arco (pictured). A rare treat.

For more early physical culture goodness, take a wander over to Early French Culture Physique photography. Some excellent pictures there.

Maxalding - SttB Articles

MaxaldingAn interesting look at the Maxalding (formerly Maxaldo) bodybuilding offerings that covered a large part of the 20th century.



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