T Nation


I got too let some steam out.Don Alessi has written some great articles for this site,spacifically “meltdown training”,where there seems to be some contraversy whether Don should have given credit to poliquin for teaching him everything he knows.First,as a strength coach i also consider myself a researcher,always looking for that extra edge that will help me and my clients.In my personal library which spans about 150 000 pages in books, abstracts and personal communications with other coaches,i dont think any strength coach from this era has really invented some new technique or program thas hasnt been tried atleast some 20 years back.Ive been to the boot camps,the bodyrecomposition seminars and scientific conferences,only to lose all this money and say “holy shit,i already knew that”.So to all the strength coaches that think we owe them some favour for some info that can easily be found,you all owe us a favour for actually coming to these overpriced seminars,buying these overpriced books and videos.BTW,can anyone tell me if they have been 100%satisfied after shelling out all that money on these seminars,just curious.

wstrainer. It’s interesting that you brought this up. On more than one occasion, I’ve asked Chris Shugart to interview somebody that was “ripped and natural” and may have something to offer the Forum. His reply was often “yea…great bod…but I doubt anything new to offer”. I FINALLY GET IT!! People may offer a few “twist”, and some may bring in tid bits of research to support their position here and there…but you (and Chris) are right; there is often nothing really new.

I STILL fall into this trap with books! Out comes some “new” workout or program; or “Workout Bible” and I end up saying the same thing you and Chris do after I buy it…nothing new (I’m getting better, though!)

By the way…I really think the biggest inroads in the past few years has been in the areas of 1)Nutrition and Supplementation 2)our UNDERSTANDING of the bodies response to Nutrition and Training 3)How to efficiently maximize both, depending on our goals.

wstrainer - very true about the rehashing of ideas and techniques in strength training…I don’t believe anything can really be touted as “new” these days. I do find it interesting to read or listen to others who are “leading” our field just because of the different methods they have of combining certain strategies (does that make sense?). Basically what I’m saying is, yeah, I do feel a lot like “I already knew that” but at the same time “I didn’t think of doing it that specific way”. That being said, I always spend a lot of time really researching speakers and courses before I attend seminars to ensure that my money won’t be wasted. I attended the NSCA’s National Conference last July, and although there were some lackluster lectures, Mel Siff, Mike Boyle, J. Carlos Santana, Lyn Jones (Olympic Lifting Coach), and Tudor Bompa were definitely worth double the conference price.

Mufasa - definitely good points about what what has been foremost in terms of learning for Testosterone readers...as you said, the nutrition side of things plays a HUGE role (much more than I ever thought) in our success. Not to mention the fact that our T-editors and writers usually come up with something to tickle our cortex each week. On another note...how's the fashion controversy going?

Well, in fairness to the strength coaches and other trainers associated with the various forms of weightlifting, I think you have to consider who the seminars are aimed at. Although I personally haven’t found Ian King’s stuff to be that effective for my particular body, I bought his leg workout video and learned quite a bit. I’ve been in this game for almost a quarter of a century now, but I’m a recreational “athlete”; if I were a full-time coach or trainer I might admittedly have already known that stuff. Also, when I was younger (MUCH younger!), I attended seminars by some professional bb’ers and would have to say that I definitely got my money’s worth. Maybe not in terms of knowledge (although I usually picked up a few tidbits each time), but just from the motivation of seeing someone who’s done it in the flesh and the ability to say, “Yeah, back in '78 I talked with Frank Zane about…” and have it be true. Memories to last a lifetime, and all that. So yes, I would say that I have gotten my money’s worth from several seminars and so on (although there have been a few that were worthless), and if it weren’t for the fact that I’m more or less convinced that Poliquin has written everything that he knows down somewhere or other already, I’d buy a tape of his seminar in a heartbeat. But even without learning anything new, if I have a chance to attend a seminar of his, I’ll pay the money and go, just to give something back to a guy who’s changed the way I train for the better. (I’d also pay pretty good money to see Bill Kazmaier roll a frying pan up with his bare hands. That must have been amazing!)

I can’t see what all the Don Alessi knocking is about, in the Meltdown article he clearly gave credit to Poloquin and also cited him in the references, what more can a guy do. At least he isn’t doing what someone else is, on Poloquin’s site he refered to another site that was SELLING notes taken from one of his seminars and branding them as their own with no reference to Charles. I agree with Mufasa that it is nutrition/supplementation in particular that is groundbreaking at the mo. not necessarily the training itself.

A lot of ideas used today have been in use for at least 100 years. Coach Davies, who is about as old school as they come, has been told that some of his ideas are so old they seem revolutionary.

yeah, the only thing that changed throughout the years is drugs, supplements and new nutrition stratagies. Just look at Arnold, Tom Platz, Frank Zane…etc…etc…etc… of the earlier years of bodybuilding. Those guys didn’t have all those “new earth shattering techniques of working out”, but they got as big and as ripped as technology and science let them get at the time. There’s nothing new to working out, basically. (therefore i totally agree with you, without writing a 2,000 word essay).