T Nation

DB Hammers Book


Anyone know where i can purchase it?


Go to Barnes & Noble. It's on the same aisle with the following authors:

Santa Claus
Easter Bunny
Women that don't like to shop



Brad Nuttal and those guys have a company called inno-sport. They are on the 'net'.

Be prepared to learn a ton about performance training, especially for speed type athletes.

The knock on DB is that he wrote the book with the same vernacular used by Verkoshansky. Also, if you do not have a solid grasp of performance training to begin with, the first time through the book will definitely elicit a wtf response.

His ideas are solid, and have been discussed by the more elite trainers here, although in a far more watered down format.

Kelly Bagget wrote a 20 page article or so on the basics of this system. Kelly runs a 'com'pany called higher-faster-sports. He has written a number of very good articles, and has a great knack for making the complicated understandable.

You may want to start with Zatsiorsky's book prior to DB Hammer's, as his lays a solid foundation leading to the 'next step' that DB has taken with his theories.

I have read DB work at least 10 times and belong to his discussion group. Guys like ColCoolJ have found amazig results using his approach, and can probably chime in also.

I believe that at least the priciples behind DB and Jay Schroeder's work are the next step in training strength speed athletes. I have found amazing success using some of his ideas, especially for athletes who 'stick' to the ground.

For a naturally rate dominant, and very elastic athlete, then the standard get strong approach is generally OK.... that is why the ultra-quick kids always get the scholarships... coaches cannot define why they need the quick kids as opposed to the sronger, step slower kids, but it is because we know very well how to get kids stronger, but don't really have a solid grasp of developing speed.....

Good luck with the work.

Don't listen to Rick. DB's work is a great addition to your knowledge base if that is where you are on your educational quest.

Author's would definitely recommend:

Charlie Francis
Kelly Baggett's Articles
Zatsiorski Methods
DB Hammer and Contributing Articles
All books by Sportivny Press

Probably in that order. This doesn't imply that any are more advanced, but the order will help lay a foundation for lines of thinking. Notice DB is well down the line. CT's stuff, for example, is advanced enough to get you to Olympian status, but he has the ability to simplify....a great ability.

Without a solid understanding, and frankly without being able to read above the 5th grade level, you might strugle with DB and the Sportivny works.

Good luck.


So then who is DB Hammer? We still have no clue.

Much of DB Hammer's stuff was just written poorly. That's what made it hard to read.


Plus there were hardly any color by numbers or connect the dots....

What a bummer.

I guess the same can be said of Verkhoshansky's stuff also....

Damned educated people. Why can't they just spoon feed those of us with only 10-watts upstairs?

So many new concepts, so many long words, so many expectations concerning a baseline understanding....

How dare he....


I have read the book and incorporated his ideas into my training. His material does take a little time to learn. It is not poorly written, it just takes some studying to understand his abbreviations, etc.


I was talking to a good friend of mine about this same thing a couple of weeks ago. I was refering to it as "academic code". Meaning, professionals in any area will tend to use the vernacular required to get their point across. Yes, anything can be "dumbed down"...the question is should it? Professionals take pride in knowing absolutely everything about their trade. Nothing is too small or insignificant. These long and seemingly over-scientific words make for difficult reading, but they relate EXACTLY what the author wants them to. Not sort of, not kind of--EXACTLY. If people are not able to make their way thru the transcript, book, research article, whatever--by dumbing down the text and using laymans terms so everyone could understand, the true meaning of the work could/would be compromised.

Ultimately, its really not enough to "know that something works", its imperative to know HOW and WHY it works. Knowing that you can flex your bicep is good, but knowing that action potentials travel down transverse tubules and calcium is released from the sarcoplasmic reticulum, binding with troponin to allow actin and myosin to bind together causing the power stroke...now, that is much cooler.


One of the best posts I've seen.


i am reluctant to post this because of my respect for a few of the members here who are avid Hammerites. also, i've said it before, just maybe not in so many words.

ive never read Nuttal and company's Best Training Ever book, nor Zatsiorsky, Verkoshanksy, or Siff. the only trainig book i've ever bought was Charlie Francis Training Systems and i got bored half way through. i've found the greatest knowledge in personal experience and in forums like this one. but i have read a bit of DB's articles and Baggett's articles about DB's stuff. i'd like to hope that i'm not shooting in the dark when i discuss DB's stuff.

other than that, the first forum introduction i had to DB was on Francis' site. i found it curious that Charlie pointed out the "unoriginality" of DB. this isn't a big deal, except for mainly two reasons...

  1. that DB claims "originality" (maybe not expressedly). he made up new names or used different or archaic terminolgy for things that were already established. ex: Mio-Iso-Plio=rep or eccentric-concentric. dont know what's up with the idea that every rep has an "isometric" phase???? and

  2. slightly altered terminology for things that were already established. ex: neuro-rate=RFD and reactivity, neuro-duration=strength-endurance, and neuro-magnitude=limit strength. DB's distinctions aren't a problem except that his system revolves around focusing on the correct weakness, and his categorizations are different than tried and true categorizations. either he knows better or champion coaches and premiere researchers know better.

also, when broken down, AREG is flawed. i hate numbers so i wont crunch them again, but auto-regulation is built into traditional lifting paradigms (which DB's AREG may collate with), but DB's AREG breaks down at the advanced and elite status.

i find the idea that DB's stuff is the next step in speed sports stuff a little reaching. especially since results for elite athletes haven't shown as much and that no ideas have been shown to be superior to Francis' ideas. it seems that DB's stuff must rely on the fact that many S&C coaches only know how to get athletes stronger, and that this causes problems if the athlete is already too strong for his RFD and reactivity. i think there's a bit more to it than this.

i find it curious that many say that football players lack RFD and reactivity and need to work that in the weight room. i dont think so. i think that they spend the majority of their time on the field working RFD and reactivity and that the weight room is for strength purposes. maybe their problem is that they strength train too much. maybe their problem is that they do too much aerobics. maybe they have many problems that aren't usually mentioned. i just doubt that speed athletes need to prioritize speed in the weight room. it seems to me that DB tries to do that.

even if im wrong about DB's protocols in this arena, that doesn't change the fact that footballers sprint, and that sprinting is bar-none, top of the line RFD, reaction, rate, whatever. this applies to all speed athletes. Charlie Francis always says that the weight room is exclusively for limit strength purposes (perhaps some low-intensity med-ball stuff also) that shouldn't be deleterious to on-field speed, reaction, and endurance stuff.

P.S. DB and Nuttal are one and the same???


Great, starting a debate without knowing what you are talking about... sounds like a good start.

Plus, forums like this get posts like this, by people who want to discuss a topic they admit up front that they don't have any knowledge on... so if we are to learn from someone who is totally uneducated, and that, by your opinion above, is the best place to gather knowledge, we are all in deep, deep stuff. The problems with Forums is that even those with little education are allowed to spew...(kind of like our newfound love of a 'pure democracy' as opposed to a republic...) so let's hear your opinion about something you admittedly have no idea about what you are talking... I will just pretend it is election time and I am listening to the news, people on the street, etc. Totally dim, but full of opinions.

Charlie pointed out that DB was unoriginal because AREG, while little talked about, is practiced by every elite coach in the world. Poliquin discusses it in his Principles book, and any coach worth his nuggets has told an athlete to shut it down if the athlete has had enough.... no matter what the workout says on their little piece of paper....the inverse is also true. So Charlie is exactly right, BUT, what DB has done is to make an attempt to quantify for the dim what extremely experienced coaches know by feel. In this way, a neophyte athlete or coach may be able to apply the concept without having an elite coach there with wizened eyes to watch the workout.

Actually, Plio is the eccentric, so it is PLIO-ISO-MIO = Rep, but let's move past the idea that you didn't even get the most basic concept correct. I will assume that even though you have no foundation to your argument, it is a masterpiece....

A simple class in physics would tell you that at some point, when motion is reversed, the object reaches zero velocity...no matter how brief. An object held at zero velocity, no matter how brief, is an isometric action. Now, is this the method that most coaches discuss when talking about ISO work? No, but DB merely pointed out that every aspect of a rep is variable... namely that a normal rep has a certain length of time for each phase, with the Iso portion minimized. We talk of controlling the Rep speed on Eccentric and Concentric phases, but we rarely discuss the reversal point. Why not? This is the point where the muscular and elastic action actually transitions to overcome the external resistance... maybe this point needs to be looked at... maybe not. I don't understand why this would be confusing, but this has been a struggle all of my life. I hope this helped.

Also the terminology isn't new or archaic, it is merely in line with the terminology used by the Russian authors featured in all of those books you listed as not having read. No wonder it is foreign to you. Maybe if a) the general public hadn't gone to the general public school systems so they could actually read at a level needed to understand the works in question, and b) Sportivny had glossy covers like Flex magazine, or developed a certification like the NSCA, we would all be using terms like Plio - Iso - Mio instead of Eccentric and Concentric... in the end what is accepted and used by the general public is all a matter of marketing, whether through glossy publications, or 'educational organizations'.

Where to even begin. Let's start here: First, champion coaches and premiere researchers....ha! Champion coaches are those who have rounded up the athletes who will find the best results under their particular form of training.. not the opposite. So, champion coaches recruit the most rate and reactive dominant athletes they can find, since they know that with duration work (a rate dominant athlete's NEED), the rate dominant athlete will excel. Since the athlete is naturally springy (reactive), by only doing actual sporting practice, this trait is maintained.... without meaning to, many coaches fall into a form of conjugate training by emphasizing Strength work, and just maintaining reactive qualities....

But what about the athletes who are strong, but not quick and springy? Well, we just don't recruit them...as getting them stronger does not lead to as large an increase in performance on the field. Why? Because I am training their inherent strength.... but, what is limiting the performance is something I am merely trying to maintain... rate and reactive qualities... hmmm.

So, DB MAY know how to coach an Strength Dominant, Non-Reactive athlete better, but elite coaches know what they need to: avoid those strength dominant athletes like the plague. They get a PHD in that department. Funnel the money into the recruiting budget, because our S&C coach is just some meatball who couldn't let go of the idea of hanging out in the gym....

Maybe I am wrong, maybe most S&C Coaches could have been PHD Scientists or Doctors like in the Soviet...... right.

Second, Neuro-Rate does not equal RFD and Reactivity, and Neuro-Duration does not equal Strength endurance. They equal the firing patterns generated to produce different forms of movements. Study up.

Very nice statement. Back it up. How so? Why? Your experience? With Rate Dominant or Duration Dominant athletes? Without backing, it is just an opinion of someone who is writing on a forum who admittedly has no experience using the methods in any of the NOT READ list. So you decide how much the statement is worth...

There is, much more to it. But you have to address the material as a person who understands it.... i.e. educated.

So, you are basically saying that FB players need to emphasize speed and reactive work, but you feel that it should be done on the field as opposed to the weightroom. fair enough, but how much experience do you have working the entire force curve?

In other words, why do we move concentrically all along the force curve... Strength Work, Olympic Lifts, Medicine Ball throws.... But, we don't do the same for the eccentric portion of lifts... We go straight from slow eccentrics to depth jumps, or sprinting, or whatever you decide is approved field work.....? Why? Is there no progression? Do you find that athletes respond better if they just strength train, and then do field work, as opposed to progressing them to ingrain new recruitment patterns?

Oh yeah, you don't have any experience with the system. just experience criticizing it.

Also, with so much focus on minimizing our inhibitory responses, which are RATE (Power) Specific, why is it so weird to make the step toward training Force Absorption? "We want to minimize the effects of the inhibitory responses caused by extreme levels of Force Absorption, but we don't want to progressively get the athlete able to tolerate more Force being entered into their system..."

Huh. Stunningly contradictory, but how suprised am I?

Not suprising at all considering all of the whining about basic terminology. i guess DB didn't have them at 'hello'. maybe he should have added a lot of watering and glossy pictures for the dim.

True. Charlie gets all of the best Rate Dominant athletes, so what he says is absolutely true....for his sample pool of athletes. Unfortuantely, high school coaches, and many lower level college coaches don't have the priviledge of getting the freaks... they get what comes. Now how do we train the slow footed guy who sticks to the ground? Ahhh...what a novel concept.

Who cares. Address the material by first learning about the material. This isn't STAR Magazine.

The truth is, until DB's and Schroeder's concepts are addressed by a larger portion of our S&C coaches, we will have no idea as to their effactiveness. But, when we cannot get past trying to figure out who he is, or why he says PLIO as opposed to Eccentric, this hope will probably never be realized.

What will fuel the marketing required? What will fuel the intelligence needed to even understand the why?

These are questions I do not know the answers to... nor do I know if DB's stuff is the next generation. I just know that attacking a premise with ignorance isn't doing our profession any good.



Now THAT is one of the best posts I've read.

I have heard of professors and GTA's complaining of students who read something (ie. a poem for English class) and whine that "they don't understand it...it doesn't make sense". The first part of the statement is the truth. "I don't get it" tends to override the "it doesn't make sense". Often times it comes as a shock that you might have to read something more than once to understand it. Or, if you get something the first time, is it really all that profound?

In the S&C world, often times the coaches like to pass themselves off as geniuses because they were blessed with gifted athletes who excelled under "their" programs. In fact, most top notch athletes will excel no matter the circumstances they are trained under...now, someone who can TRAIN speed and explosiveness into an athlete who is less gifted time and again...this is the coach who is on to something.



Your post was actually better, mine was just more passionate.

"Sometimes it is necessary for the Alpha Male to re-establish his dominance in the group by mounting the lesser males."

I usually play very nicely.... seriously....hehe.


Can we all go back to moving training knowledge forward....? It seems silly to beat our chests. Plus, I actually like Wuf and his questioning... the post was far from personal.


I just tried to read a few of DB's articles. He misuses a lot of terminology, there really isn't any question about that. I don't mean he's using "different" terminology, I mean he's misusing terms that have particular meanings that have no relevance to what he's writing about. For instance, using the term "electrical impulse" when he should have said "measured compound action potential." I have read Zatsiorski, Siff, etc. and taken a number of classes in biomechanics, medical physics, exercise physiology, etc.

That being said, he has a lot of good ideas, and I don't think the way he and I would train a particular athlete would be very different.

His writing skills suck though. He really ought to run things by an editor with knowledge of the field before he publishes them.



That's true, but it's hard to move knowledge forward when writers who use words poorly try to assert their ideas through writing.



Agree completely!!!!!!



thanks for jumping to the conclusion that because i didn't read the books that i dont have any knowledge or experience of that which is confined in said books.

actually, in retrospect i shouldn't have mentioned the fact that i haven't read the books. initially, i had a purpose for that which i was going to follow up, but because i think faster than i type it must've been lost in translation or whatnot.

partly, why i mentioned it in the first place has to do with my desire to figure out if i want to purchase DB's book, and in order to figure that out i desired getting a more solid opinion about DB's stuff. i find that i sometimes get more information out of people when i criticize what they think instead of asking them what they think. thank you for obliging me.

remember how i said that i bought CFTS and got bored halfway through? i got bored because i was presented with very little new information. before purchasing CFTS i spent a ton of time perusing CF archives in order to find out if i wanted to learn Francis' methods. i decided that i dug Francis, and promptly bought the book. only to find out that i'd come across nearly everything in the book on his forum.

dont get me wrong, the book's great, as are many others, but for aforementioned and other reasons i tend to not like reading theory books when i can converse or witness conversations about the theories in said books. being uneducated about the content of certain books and not reading the books dont always go hand in hand.

WRT PLIO-MIO, thank you for pointing out my mistake with PLIO-MIO. it's a good point, but for the purposes of this discussion it's not worth dwelling on. especially since it was a cut-and-paste-esque mistake.

WRT AREG, IIRC, DB has dissected AREG into a numbers system. like i said, this may equate with what happens with beginners and intermediates, generally. but the numbers are irrelevant when applied to advanced and elite athletes who have little more progress to make.

WRT ISO, never does somebody performing a rep try to isometrically contract. they're only trying to lower or raise. the fact that there is an almost infinitesimally short period of apparently isometric contracting doesnt' negate the fact that it's minutiae and impractical to isolate and address.

WRT rate and duration = such n such, since rate doesn't equal RFD and reaction, and duration doesn't equal strength endurance then what DO they equal? or how are they defined?

P.S. you made many other good points that i agree with or dont care to disagree with at this time. besides, why would you want to be subjected to the rantings of an uneducated internet quarterback, such as myself?


fair point but i dont really care who it is...

as far as training methods, CT has said that he has been influenced by DB


On what Jumanji wrote:

your post while a bit mean and condescending was good.

I disagree with a few areas though...

"...Very nice statement. Back it up. How so? Why? Your experience? With Rate Dominant or Duration Dominant athletes? Without backing, it is just an opinion of someone who is writing on a forum who admittedly has no experience using the methods in any of the NOT READ list. So you decide how much the statement is worth..."

When training in team sports and not just in the gym its really difficult to assess the amount of fatigue induced by training. You could test vertical leap etc before and after trainings I guess, but thats according to dbs writings doesnt seem adequate...

I actually quite like DBs stuff... I gave it ago before I started playing basketball again... and had some of the best progress id ever made...

having said that I can see why people are skeptical... some of the claims made initially really were quite extraordinary... some of the numbers and progress and abilities of his athletes are hard to believe, especially when he doesnt reveal who they are...

the way he described muscular mechanisms as 'frictional' is was always asking for trouble... a dominant and fair interpretation is that he doesnt really undertand muscular contraction very well... although its probably safe to say that he does...

in all his methods are relatively unknown and are interesting... if you have an open mind id recomend reading more... if not youd probably rather poke your eyes out


Jumanji is being pretty pedantic about semantics here... infact im not entirely certain he is correct, you werent either though...

he states:

"They equal the firing patterns generated to produce different forms of movements."

depends if you are referring to the description of neurology which in section 3.3 he calls associations or modalities in chapter 3.3.1
associations and neuro descriptions
Neurorate= rate at which neural output/force is manipulated
Neuroduration= duration neural output/force is manipulated

training modalities
neurorate - the outcome of neurorate neurological firing - ie rapidly tapping your hands...

neuroduration - the outcome of neuroduration firing ie strength training

however the neuro prefix is normally dropped so it becomes rate work or duration work...

anyway... like you said duration work is typified by strength endurance... that is correct...

theres an RFD any time force is generated... even heavy isometrics... heavy training can also develop RFD so calling rate work RFD is kinda wrong although most people will accept it

rate work is more 'speed' work i guess

early in the book DB refers to RFM and DFM rate force manipulation and duration force manipulation too... which could probably be used interchangably with the modality definitions which are made up of different combinations of transmision magnitude, transmission duration and contraction rate(which is made up of transmission rate and interval rate)

i left magnitude out because then i wouldnt be able to helpmyself but make this very long and boring


Chris, i've always appreciated your insight. as long as it's readable and fresh, long and boring isn't a problem.