Category Archives: Guest Blogs

The odds of being born a superhero: An examination of the genetic limits to strength


Was your father Zeus or Odin? Did you ever have a favorable exposure to Gamma radiation? Have you ever been bitten by a radioactive genetically modified spider? No? Well maybe you hit the genetic lottery then when it came to strength. We all know or have seen people who display almost super human strength characteristics. Bret wrote a good article several years back on the subject titled The Truth About Bodybuilding Genetics.

Our genetic makeup determines so much of who we are and what we do. It determines how we look and influences how we act. It also determines how our bodies react to environmental stimuli. For example, if two people perform the exact same exercise routine, they won’t respond in exactly the same way. One person might put on more lean muscle mass and get stronger than the other individual. The differences in responses may be small or in some rare cases extreme. Before continuing, I believe it would be helpful to give a little refresher on some biology terms.

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Functional strength gains by leg pressing?

The following article is a guest post from Chris Beardsley, who writes the monthly Strength & Conditioning Research Review service with me:

Some popular strength coaches have claimed that the leg press does not build “functional strength”.

Functional strength refers to basic movements that we all need to perform on a daily basis, like getting out of a chair, climbing up and down stairs, and walking across town. It can also refer to athletic performance measures, like vertical jump height, horizontal jump distance, and short-distance sprinting ability.

Since a small number of research studies have actually investigated whether leg press training leads to improvements in such tests of real-world muscular function, we can put these claims to the test.

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Considerations for the Rehabilitation of the Post-operative Knee: Restoring the Athlete’s Active Knee Range of Motion

Considerations for the Rehabilitation of the Post-operative Knee: Restoring the Athlete’s Active Knee Range of Motion

Robert A. Panariello MS, PT, ATC, CSCS
Professional Physical Therapy
Professional Athletic Performance Center
New York, New York

During the course of rehabilitation of the post-operative knee pathology athlete, common interventions utilized in the field of Sports Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation include the use of modalities for pain, edema, and neuromuscular control, restoration of the knee joint range of motion, lower extremity strength, proprioception, and normal gait, as well as structured treatment progressions to the achievement of the eventual milestones of running, jumping, cutting, and additional athletic activities, and “functional tasks”. All of these milestones are achieved through a number of various treatment methods, manual techniques, exercises, and practices.

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Lower Body Training for the Amputee and Able-bodied Athlete Alike

Lower Body Training for the Amputee and Able-bodied Athlete Alike
by Travis Pollen

Finding the motivation to be physically active is hard enough for folks who have all four limbs. For those with limb loss, it can be even more of a challenge.

When it comes to rehabilitation and getting back on one’s feet – or foot, as the case may be – there are plenty of resources available for amputees. However, for amputees like me who aspire to peak athletic performance, rehab does not equal training. And frustratingly, the training information simply doesn’t exist.

As such, over the last few years I’ve had to tread my own path in the weight room. With the help of mentors like Bret and Barry Fritz (my instructor at the National Personal Training Institute of Philadelphia), I’ve been able to come up with a catalog of lower body exercises for which I’m well suited.

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