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  • #21

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    • #22
      Kim -

      Studly can refer to what supports the walls and ceiling where you are sitting right now, or, as the governor of California uses it, the word describes the opposite of what he would call a girlie man:

      http://www.ironmind.com/ironmind/ope...Kono_Open.html

      You know what the T-shirts say and which training tool gets put at which end of the spectrum.

      Seriously, even if you don't want to talk about the image of machines vs the image of barbells and how/why that happened, you must remember more than you said about Angel Spassov - don't you recall when he told the world that Bulgarian weightlifters didn't do squats and then Terry Todd and he wrote an article wrapped in sensationalism for Muscle & Fitness:

      http://www.ironmind.com/ironmind/ope...htlifters.html

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      • #23
        Originally posted by Randall Strossen View Post
        Kim -


        Seriously, even if you don't want to talk about the image of machines vs the image of barbells and how/why that happened, you must remember more than you said about Angel Spassov - don't you recall when he told the world that Bulgarian weightlifters didn't do squats and then Terry Todd and he wrote an article wrapped in sensationalism for Muscle & Fitness:

        http://www.ironmind.com/ironmind/ope...htlifters.html
        Regarding Angel Spassov, how could you believe anything from a dude dressed like that?

        Comment


        • #24
          Chris: you are right on...but I don't think training guys for specific
          skill improvement was ever being discussed here...in that context
          any machine work you did would probably fit in the equation as
          "assistance exercises"... Dick Conner of Evansville, Indiana
          and Dr. Ken Leistner are very successful as power-lifting coaches...
          both use machines to gain general strength for their athletes
          but both also focus on practicing the skills of the sport...in this case, power-lifting.
          In this thread Steve Wiener(or is it Weiner?) speaks of using certain
          machines to help him gain strength for some of his strength stunts...
          of course, he spends lots of time working directly on his stunts also
          ('cept the "Bud lift")(Steve's one strong MOFO).

          Randy: why didn't you tell me we were talking about "images"?
          I was talking about getting stronger. The world of "images"(and identity) is a
          whole different kettle of fish. I suppose you are wanting me to say
          that free weights are for tough guys and machines are for sissies...
          and how did that happen? but I'm just not up to it. What I didn't mention when talking about Arthur Jones was that although the early days
          were exciting and intellectually stimulating and it was neat to
          meet all kinds of "iron game" types that after a while(maybe 1975)
          Arthur got tired of it all...he became very sick of free-weight toughies
          and machine sweet boys...if you notice he quit writing for Iron Man
          on a regular basis...spent most of his time working on the "sports
          market'(but his heart wasn't in it)...he had his nephew design the
          machines after about 1974... the passion was gone. The reality
          behind the "images" was just too much to deal with...too many drugs,
          too much corruption, too many iron game people of low character
          (both free-weight guys and machine men), too many people who were liars and lived lies, too many stupid people...he'd had enough...
          played it for the money... played it poorly...sort of ended up like
          Bogart at the end of "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre"...

          But relative to your "machines vs free-weight" false dualism...
          Arthur realized that most iron game people were looking for
          something...a father, a leader("Weider as your Leader"..."Be a Hoffman
          100%er""The Father of Weight Lifting") an identity... he knew that whether they loved him
          or hated him he really couldn't help them(nor could their muscles
          or their trophies)...but he did an interesting thing. He had me buy
          for him a couple big cases of author, Eric Hoffer's "The True Believer"
          He'd give the books out to people who came down to see him.
          If they'd read the book(and it's a hard read) they might have learned
          something about themselves...

          (I left out one thing. Arthur Jones liked being Arthur Jones(for a while).
          He played his character well. Big time broads...money...air-planes
          the horsey ranch in Ocala...celebrity pals...the whole nine yards.
          I was as close to him as anyone for about ten years. I always felt
          that the machines were important to him but that his real
          feelings were for the kid who wanted to improve himself and
          lifted weights down in the basement or maybe the garage.)

          Comment


          • #25
            Great insight on the man,Kim! I think we're learning far more about Arthur Jones by you posting on here than by a bunch of books written by "experts". Thanks for taking the time to do this.

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            • #26
              Originally posted by Steve Friedrich View Post
              Regarding Angel Spassov, how could you believe anything from a dude dressed like that?
              Steve -

              Funny you should say that because I can remember thinking something like, "Looks like these poor guys can't get real Levi's . . . Eastern European chic? . . . must be his first time in California."

              This is why, years ago, I started to bring 501s to some wieghtlifters from Russia and Bulgaria - jean therapy.

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              • #27
                Kim -

                Yes, images and a false dualism, so why/how did this happen? Did Hammer Strength accept, ignore or contradict this?

                Also, great stuff about Arthur Jones as the Pied Piper who then decided he wasn't completely thrilled with the parade following him.

                Comment


                • #28
                  When Jones came on the scene he caused quite a stir...
                  many "iron game" people didn't know how to re-act. He showed
                  up when things were extremely dull(look at the magazines right before Arthur showed...the same old stuff) and he showed up in a
                  way that showed the"experts" to not be that at all. The dawn of
                  Jones and the Nautilus machines shook-up the industry down to its roots. York was
                  threatened and re-acted...Weider was threatened and re-acted.
                  Gyms had to "stay current" and felt forced to buy his machines...
                  health club chains felt the same...and both were threatened by new
                  "Nautilus Training Centers" springing up everywhere and new Nautilus facilities opening inside YMCA's and racquet-ball clubs. All the major league sports teams were using Nautilus...major colleges too. The iron
                  game was tipped over on its head...and on the run. Eventually,
                  the old time people fought back...Weider ran a series of articles
                  blasting Arthur and the machines... and hard-core gym types
                  created the identity statement(and attitude) that "machines were for sissies" and "real men lifted barbells"... Jones had 'em on the run...
                  big time! And then he lost interest ('cept for the money and the tits and ass and air-planes it bought). ( Who knows what would have
                  happened if he had followed through and bought Iron Man, and Gold's Gym, and York Barbell and Universal Gym...all parts of the plan? )

                  Many "iron game" people have shall I say, "identity" problems and
                  "identity" needs. Gosh, the weight-world brings so much to the table.
                  Fantasies of all kinds, needs for dominance, sexual identity stuff(and garbage), needs for attention, dreams, Manhood...a whole lot of things(not all bad). Yes, Randy it's a world of "images"(at times
                  enlightening, at times perverse, sometimes transcendental and
                  usually fascinating) and needs and fetish-like qualities When we did "Hammer Strength"we had a product that was really wonderful. Gary Jones did an amazing job designing and manufacturing the machines.
                  The bio-mechanics were right on... but the end result was a
                  great "feel"... the machines felt great! And given what we learned
                  from Arthur's successes and failures...the "feel" was what we sold.
                  Rugged machines with the function of having solid bio-mechanics
                  AND the feel of "free-weights"... we projected BOTH "free-weight" and
                  "machine" images... Free-weight tough guys liked 'em...machine
                  sweet-boys liked 'em. We didn't link a training philosophy to 'em
                  like Arthur had done with Nautilus...we just made quality tools.
                  Gary likened them to a stipped down "street machine" hot rod...
                  nothin' fancy...just good lower cost, durable tools...that felt great!

                  Our culture("culture" meaning how we live) is one focused on "fetish-like"
                  forces. People are defined and define themselves by products they
                  use. Buy a Lexus or a sports-car and you become a sexy guy...
                  heck, you can even buy Michael's shoes and feel better jumping
                  higher... drink some Coors or Bud-Lite and you're not only hip but
                  you are gonna have some real fun with foxey babes...
                  We used that selling Hammer Strength..."use the equipment
                  that the pros use"... use the machines that Dorian Yates uses or
                  Emmitt Smith or Howie Long etc. etc. And people used them
                  a they felt great! What a sad and superficial culture we have!
                  "I use free-weights and I am a tough-guy ..." is certainly one of the
                  sadder parts of that culture. (Read Hoffer)(Read Moby Dick)(get
                  dvd's of "Citizen Kane" and "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" and watch 'em)

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    All of the Arthur stuff is very interesting. Thanks.

                    I read "The Upper Body Squat" that appeared in Iron Man Magazine in the Summer of 1970. I followed the career of AJ until 1978 (when I got married) and paid zero attention to anything Iron Game related until 1998 (when I received my Captains of Crush Trainer for Christmas).
                    I always wondered why Nautilus did not do what it could have done. Jones was extremely intelligent. Intelligence in Business does not count for that much, but he had all the other components: creativity, risk taking, vision, leadership, drive, energy, etc all of which make such a difference in Business.

                    But if his heart was not in it (as Kim mentioned), that explains EVERYTHING. The "why" could be open to debate, but once the entire world could see the tremendous benefits of strength training, I could see that what he was doing before would look pretty boring. Weider on the other hand, simply said "the World has taken on MY valuable principles and it is all due to me", and milked it for everything he possibly could. Hoffman just got old, as did Peary and Mabel Rader.

                    I look at things like this Forum as an attempt to bring back the fundamental issues of getting stronger and improving oneself. What separates Jones from the others is that he was not a Johnny One Note, as is the case with most with the Iron Game. Consequently, his story reads differently to me than the others do, so I enjoy hearing about it.

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                    • #30
                      Mike: Arthur Jones lived a full life... although his "Nautilus" years
                      were interesting (and one hell of a ride) they were perhaps far
                      less interesting than what he was doing prior to Nautilus(killing wild
                      animals, capturing wild animals, filming TV-shows of the capture
                      of wild animals, traveling the World, being a mercenary soldier etc. ...).
                      He was a fascinating guy... a brilliant man in many ways and he was
                      a "man's man"...a "regular guy". The point I tried to make relative
                      to Arthur losing his passion for the "iron game" has much more to do
                      with what the "iron game" was/is than Arthur. He loved working out...
                      and he liked people who were prepared to work hard to improve themselves...he loved talking about the science of getting stronger
                      and trying to find the best way to train and he loved to create machines
                      ... but what the "iron game" had become(or maybe always was) wore him out. He made
                      great contributions toward weight training being a part of our culture
                      today and over a long period he made lots of money(before he pissed it
                      away)...but during the process he gained insight into "the game behind
                      the game" and it sickened him. It sickens ME. Drugs, exploitation of all sorts, business people just waiting to fleece the marks, corrupt people(both
                      personally and professionally), fraud...the list goes on.


                      Randy: The "Pied Piper" reference doesn't cut it. Everything
                      I've mentioned is really just the two-bit quickie tour. Yes, Jones was
                      dis-illusioned with his "followers" but he was also dis-appointed
                      with just about everyone in the "iron game"...maybe disgusted
                      is a better word.

                      Lifting weights is great. Talking about lifting weights is great also.
                      And reading about weight training is great too. But I'm like
                      Chris Rice...I'm staying at my place...I'm workin' out here.
                      What the "iron game" is ain't me. And the hustlers and the goons
                      ain't invited.

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                      • #31
                        Barbell Deadlifts and squats themselves put machines out of business.

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Glad you spoke up, Sam. You've added to the dialogue.

                          Maybe the whole "iron game" is territory for "primitive people" or
                          the " primitive in people. " When we reach "bottom lines" (gosh, read
                          today's paper) maybe the World belongs to the tribal ones, the herd-like
                          and the non-thinkers...the dumb ones rather than the smart ones.
                          What I've found over the years is that regardless of how accomplished
                          a man becomes or how educated he is that when it comes to
                          weight-training he's more than likely a goon. Now, I'm not totally
                          against goons(didn't Menken say,"nobody ever went broke under-estimating
                          the intelligence of the American people"?)... but the iron game seems to be
                          ruled by folks who just aren't very smart(who else but dummies could fall for clowns like Joe Weider, or drugs that shrink your nuts up, or TV shows where fat guys grunt and lift rocks?). Maybe it's because it appeals
                          to something primitive inside us that many people reject the modern and rational and choose the primitive way... Maybe they're going back
                          to "what feels good"...and for humans "picking things up" IS rewarding...
                          lifting stuff IS fun ...and throwing around the iron is too.
                          Maybe we expect too much from humans...especially weight-guys.

                          Arthur Jones hated stupid people. He'd often say,"never be so arrogant
                          that you fail to understand how truly stupid most people actually are."
                          Maybe his attempt to reach people via rational thought and proven
                          scientific knowledge was doomed from the start!

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Originally posted by Sam Scott View Post
                            Barbell Deadlifts and squats themselves put machines out of business.
                            Don't poke the bear by stating silly things.

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Originally posted by Kim Wood View Post
                              Mike: Arthur Jones lived a full life... although his "Nautilus" years
                              were interesting (and one hell of a ride) they were perhaps far
                              less interesting than what he was doing prior to Nautilus(killing wild
                              animals, capturing wild animals, filming TV-shows of the capture
                              of wild animals, traveling the World, being a mercenary soldier etc. ...).
                              He was a fascinating guy... a brilliant man in many ways and he was
                              a "man's man"...a "regular guy". The point I tried to make relative
                              to Arthur losing his passion for the "iron game" has much more to do
                              with what the "iron game" was/is than Arthur. He loved working out...
                              and he liked people who were prepared to work hard to improve themselves...he loved talking about the science of getting stronger
                              and trying to find the best way to train and he loved to create machines
                              ... but what the "iron game" had become(or maybe always was) wore him out. He made
                              great contributions toward weight training being a part of our culture
                              today and over a long period he made lots of money(before he pissed it
                              away)...but during the process he gained insight into "the game behind
                              the game" and it sickened him. It sickens ME. Drugs, exploitation of all sorts, business people just waiting to fleece the marks, corrupt people(both
                              personally and professionally), fraud...the list goes on.


                              Randy: The "Pied Piper" reference doesn't cut it. Everything
                              I've mentioned is really just the two-bit quickie tour. Yes, Jones was
                              dis-illusioned with his "followers" but he was also dis-appointed
                              with just about everyone in the "iron game"...maybe disgusted
                              is a better word.

                              Lifting weights is great. Talking about lifting weights is great also.
                              And reading about weight training is great too. But I'm like
                              Chris Rice...I'm staying at my place...I'm workin' out here.
                              What the "iron game" is ain't me. And the hustlers and the goons
                              ain't invited.
                              Kim -

                              You're right about the allusion, but for the wrong reason: I really just meant the guy heading a parade. The Pied Piper, as you know, was distinguished not just for his ability to do this, but also by the reason that motivated him.

                              Based on your thumbnail sketch, then, Arthur Jones even if not losing interest in much of what originally inspired him, he separated himself from a broader swath than just his followers. But no matter, perhaps, because he came, he left and regardless of how he or others perceived him, Arthur Jones had an impact which was no less than to make a lot of people think differently about exercise than they before.

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by Steve Gardener View Post
                                Don't poke the bear by stating silly things.
                                Steve -

                                I think that taking a broader view of Sam's comment casts it in a better light: the major compound movements performed with barbells are one of the metrics one would use to assess the relative effectiveness of machines, right?

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Randy: your comments to Steve Gardener don't sound right.
                                  I doubt if Sam's comment was "thought out" to any degree.
                                  I'm sure he's a nice man.
                                  Anything you do with a barbell certainly involves "strength" but it
                                  also involves "skill"... you can get strong as heck training on machines but if you choose to "test" that strength by using barbells(and you
                                  haven't been using barbells...or "practicing" the skill of lifting heavy barbells)
                                  you might not show great improvement. Your performance is
                                  going a to be a function of both "strength" snd "skill". If you want
                                  to "test" by using barbells whether or not you are getting stronger from using machines you better be doing some barbell work with heavy barbells while you are training on the machines. The "skill" factor has
                                  to be taken into account.

                                  I've had football players train just on machines for many months(for what-ever reason) and during
                                  that time do no barbell work(we trained our players to be stronger and better football players...being weight-lifters or power-lifters was of no
                                  importance to us.). During that period of time the players got significantly "stronger"...put on muscular weight...and were obviously
                                  stronger at playing their position(the major goal when training football
                                  players)...for kicks, sometimes the players sought to "test" themselves on the bench press with a barbell to see if they got
                                  "stronger"... well, they probably did not do very well in their "test"...
                                  of course, they didn't do well in their "test"...they hadn't been doing
                                  benches!...they hadn't been practicing the skills involved in benching.
                                  Bench pressing(or anything you do with a barbell involves skill...a skill
                                  that certainly has a high component of "strength"(the ability
                                  to produce force)...but a "skill"(the ability of the organism to
                                  efficiently use its "strength")...for a skill to be acquired or maintained
                                  it must be practiced in a specific fashion on a regular basis. Our players
                                  got stronger but their ability to demonstrate that strength in
                                  the skill of barbell bench pressing degenerated from them not "practicing" the lift... A pretty complex group of ideas... probably too complex
                                  for most.

                                  I once had a player...a great guy...came over from the Jets and
                                  was billed by a power-lifting magazine as the "strongest man in football"
                                  ...he was studly...well, once he said to me... "my power-lifting program
                                  gets me stronger than your program. But your program gets me
                                  stronger for football. I'm a stronger football player doing it your
                                  way..." I sat down with him and said,"Matt...getting stronger for
                                  football is the ONLY reason we are here...it's the only reason I KNOW
                                  YOU...it's the only reason we are in this room right now!"

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Speaking of football strong, Kim, the "NFL Combine", and the one strength test that they have: am I right, they only test the Bench Press, and how many times a guy can BP 225 pounds?? Shouldn't they be changing with the times and checking something other than that? It just does not seem to me to be the equivalent to the 40 yard dash in terms of a standard against which to be measuring others. What does repping the Bench Press tell someone about a Football Player?
                                    Is it something you supported in your coaching days? Do you think it will still be part of it (the Combine) 5 years from now?
                                    Darn that is a lot of annoying questions, but I guess I suspect there must be SOMETHING that would be a more indicative test as far as football strength, or a test of overall strength than that. The question, "how much can you bench?" seems like a silly question to a sophisticated strength athlete today. But maybe it's because I come from a family of lousy Bench Pressers...

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      Originally posted by Randall Strossen View Post
                                      Steve -

                                      I think that taking a broader view of Sam's comment casts it in a better light: the major compound movements performed with barbells are one of the metrics one would use to assess the relative effectiveness of machines, right?
                                      I took my view based on two things. One; Sam has been banned from some forums for plain silly comments and claims and two; patently obvious turnover and profit from machine making companies for decades which are many times higher than ANY barbell company regardless of the movements they are used for.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Mike: I'm not a big fan of the bench testing at the combine...
                                        but given what they are looking for it's OK. Strength testing
                                        isn't a "predictor" for football ability. Using the test of 225 for reps you CAN find some things out. Basically, if a player does poorly (probably less
                                        than twenty) he's not particularly strong(and needs work on that)...and if he does a whole bunch of reps he's pretty strong. The big thing it tests
                                        is who's got "good work habits" and who doesn't. But usually, the
                                        top guys in the testing phase of "the under-ware olympics"(what
                                        the combine is termed by many) don't make the NFL. Bottom line
                                        is being able play football at a major league level. Finding those guys is an art. And a very imprecise art.

                                        I don't see them changing the "225 for reps test" anytime soon.
                                        Rumor is that the combine spectacular will be ending soon.

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          Kim, Steve & Sam -

                                          I am trying to give Sam the benefit of the doubt and also provide a strong hint about how he could possibly present his major point more effectively - Steve's point about the success in selling machines, though, is hard to dispute, although I wasn't sure that Sam had meant that literally. Sam, maybe you want to say more about your thought here?

                                          All -

                                          Anyway, back to this skill thing - yes, it's a factor, but I'd also say that strength is much more specific than most people would guess (although one might argue that this is really just a skill-related phenomenon), and that's part of what gets lost in translation when you go from one medium/test to another.

                                          Kim -

                                          Football strong as opposed to weight room strong - a vital distinction. Earlier, I think you said that you trained the Bengals about 50:50 machines/barbells. s that the NFL norm? Is strongman stuff in vogue with NFL strength coaches now?

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