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Werner Gunthor

By August 1, 2011January 10th, 2014Sport Specific Training

Here is an intriguing 4-part series on the training of Werner Gunthor; a former Swiss track & field athlete and owner of the 5th best shot put in track & field history. I love watching different training methods, especially when they involve strong, athletic beasts like Werner. I’m fascinated by the blend of training methods used to create such a strong and powerful specimen and I figured some of my readers would enjoy the videos.

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV


  • Eric says:

    I’m not sure what that exercise is where he hangs over the wall and rows the bar up at 7:58 in the first vid, but it looks awesome. And the exercise at 5:01 in the 2nd vid looks brutal, his legs had to be on fire after that.

  • Stephen Clipp says:

    That combo row/back raise I first saw in a Christian Thibadeaux article – I didn’t do it for awhile, thinking of Stuart McGill’s writings, but I brought it back for dragon boat training, doing a 1-arm db rowing variation, and it works great, no back pain.

  • John says:

    Lots of interesting stuff in there. Really liked the barbell work with eccentric emphasis, isometrics, static overcome by dynamic work, complex and contrast training etc. I thought it was also pretty cool he was doing some rear foot elevated split squats too.

    -Coach Gaglione

  • Travis says:

    Great find Bret.

  • Matthew says:

    Video 2 was phenomenal. I loved the complex training being used.

  • Graeme says:

    Thanks for that gem of a video series.
    I liked the lateral squats followed with the Heiden jumps to work on lateral directional power.

  • Kamal Singh says:

    Hi Bret,

    Great video series. Really enjoyed watching a world class athlete train. Holy cow, he was training on machines (gasp)! Also, Dr McGill would be very unhappy with some of the exercises he was doing. Sometimes I really wonder if we have become too conservative with prescribing the so called dangerous exercises. As according to Vern Gambetta, “no one gets hurt and no one gets better.”

  • J says:

    Hi Bret! I love all the thoughts and exercises you post, all thrust variations are great! One thing I’d like to know though is what I shouldn’t do? I know that these machines where you isolate specific parts of your legs are bad for your knees, just not in what way.. I’d love to be able to explain to my friends who are doing these why they shouldn’t. Thanks /Sweden

  • Dave Morales says:

    Great stuff Bret.
    Video 2 was awesome! Love the old-school power pack

  • Carl Valle says:

    When I posted this in 2008 I thought it would get only a few hundred views….now it’s 70,000

    The books from Cometti are fantastic reads, too bad nobody brings up the coaches and sport scientists that produce athletes.

  • Chris Butler says:

    Great stuff!
    Love the squats> plyo flow drills.
    Similar to Litvi – sprints ala Dan John

  • Keda says:

    WOW I’m loving that back extension row combination!

  • Poul Hansen says:

    Love this. I am all fired up to train plyos and more athletic based training now. These videos along with me getting more and more atletes as clients makes me want to do more athletic work 🙂

  • Stefan says:

    I trained like this last year when I started shotput (my coach trained in the eastern block and picked the methods up). My increase in strength and power were phenomenal. With the increased power, I wound never have grinding reps, I could either generate enough force off the bottom or I’d miss it completely

  • Stefan says:

    Also Gunthor was an animal

  • Rob Panariello says:

    So Bret let me get this straight. Werner Gunthor is an athlete whose program design, which was DEEMED APPROPRIATE SPECIFICALLY FOR HIM,resulted in the high intensity exercise performance of the bi-lateral squat, the Olympic Lifts, the Overhead Press and Spinal Flexion exercises. The results were the 5th best shot put in track and field history vs. hospitalized with a knee, shoulder, or low back injury? Hmmmm, maybe something to think about.

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