This may seem ignorant,but bear with me.I have gyno,have had since puberty (maybe a lot of soya products for approx 10 years caused or aggravated it) it is a severe blow to confidence,and I have seen little constructive info on it anywhere,here included,with regards to TRAINING.Only surgery/hormonal solutions.
Let's flag down a cab and head for real street-not everyone has the time,money or inclination to do this,and often several surgeries and hormonal adjustments are needed.
Sorry this is a long post,if you just want my theoretical solution without the reasoning,,scroll down to 'The Gyno Solution' but first,a little history.
I was already an experienced Personal Trainer for several years at Level 2,and had qualifications and gym experience,and do a lot of reading on here and other sites,books,etc.
I recently completed a Personal Training Level 3 qualification (I now plan to study for Level 4-Special populations and corrective exercise specialist,etc.) and something popped up in a workshop that blew me away.
The course tutor said something I had not noticed or at least emphasized from any other article or text.
Most conventional chest moves that guys do -bench press,flyes,etc. mostly involve the pec major,but do not involve pec minor to any considerable degree,a small muscle which is often overlooked or even completely ignored.
To target it,you need to do other exercise.interestingly,good ol' pushups hit the pec major AND minor.
Ok,some dudes know that already-to balance out weighted workouts with bodyweight workouts on a regular basis is a good idea in general for all musscle groups.
Some dudes may even take it further and do all the variations and progressions of bodyweight exercises,pushups included.
But I think with the pushups,too many guys concentrate on doing more reps-
its like a test of manhood,I'm sure most guys have been asked-
'Hey dude,how many pushups can you do?'
It is still used as a benchmark of fitness,by the military,and in fitness asessments,advocated by the YMCA and ACSM,even though they seem to have only recently included the disclaimer in textbooks that it has a bias towards muscular ENDURANCE,
It is not strictly speaking a STRENGTH test.
Although there is some correlation,they are at opposite ends of the strength continuum,with the pure hypertrophy range falling in between the two.Although the term MSE/Muscular Strength and Endurance is used often in textbooks,I think of them as two different sports played in the same ballpark.Not many lifers would pick up a book titled 'How to increase muscular endurance' so if you can do even 15/20+ pushups without reaching failure,what's the point?
Not enough guys concentrate on adding SETS,or adding WEIGHT.I know this from talking to and watching even experienced/huge guys in the gym.
In addition,some guys are 'triceps dominant' and do not feel their chest working to a great degree in the bench press,particularly the barbell bench press,a reason I rarely do it and stick to DB press.
'THE GYNO SOLUTION'
I concluded that I should experiment and include weighted pushups more often,and add weight progressively as for the bench press,even giving the DB press a break.
So I have only tried this a few times now-but to my surprise,not only has my chest grown,it has grown THICKER and HARDER and 'HIGHER' in other words,it seems like I've had implants all of a sudden,they've 'lifted' and it seems to have 'flattened out' my gyno.I concede mine is not severe,more of a 'puffy nipple' effect and softer than average chest muscle,rather than full-on man-boobs/moobs,but reamains despite lowering my body fat and different approaches and programmes for training the chest and adding muscle.
This is the only protocol that has actually added considerable thickness/firmness/lift.It almost looks like I've had implants,and I've only tried this a few times.
I basically just added a weight plate to my back,on the shoulder blades-
1 warm-up set with no plate,10 reps.
1 warm-up set with 5kg plate on back,10 reps.
1 set with 10kg plate on back,10 reps.
1 set with 15kg plate on back,10 reps.
1 set with 20kg plate on back,to failure,usually around 3/4 reps for me.
There is also another move that hits the pec minor really well,basically partial reps on the DB pullover,which I saw in a T-Nation article.Basically do the pullover ,but just the first few inches of the move.
Also a very good move for stimulating pec muscles is pushups with hands on the ball,at varying tempos.
I am also having good results with Epsom Salt baths recently.200-400g in a warm bath twice a week reduces muscle inflammation and water retention,and increases magnesium levels,all of which can only be a good thing for gyno.
In addition,I have read on here in a couple of articles that licorice extract cream (4:1 ratio) applied to the abs can reduce body fat storage in that area.Would it reduce body fat around the nipple? I plan to buy some and experiment on abs/chest
I also reccomend inclusion of decline flyes to get that sculpted look under the pecs,a favourite of Joe Weider.
Also foam rolling and ART (Active Release Techniques) should be incorporated.It should be noted that possibly due to genetics or underuse,the pec minor can attach to the pec major and 'switch off' to a certain extent.
In addition,explosive 'Plyometric' pushups should be phased in to complement a high rep/low rep/mid-range rep macrocycle,in order to hit the maximum number of muscle fibres/motor units.
If the pec minor lies underneath,and we train it,it would not only increase the apparent size of the chest,but surely provide a firmer 'base' for the pecs. Before you say 'What yoo talkin' 'bout,Ace'? consider that if you train the Rectus Abdominus ('Six-pack') without training the deeper TVA (Transverse Abdominus) it can lead to a 'pot belly' as the abs will 'hang' off the weak deeper muscles.
Weighted pushups also be done with a weight vest and/or a band around the hands and acroos the back.I have yet to experiment with things like rest/pause,negatives,superslow,etc. so there is still scope for a lot of variation and progression.
Please try it,anyone with gyno of any degree,or a soft chest,puffy nipples or 'psuedo gyno' even if skeptical.If this works,I will include it with clients with this issue.I am aware it will only make a small difference,if any,to extreme cases.
It is not necessarilly designed as a 'cure' but a solution that will possibly significantly REDUCE the effects of Gyno.
Professor X said that he suffered from it before surgery,and gaining considerable chest mass hid/reduced the effect,or rather the noticeability of gyno.
With 'The Gyno Solution' I have switched the focus to release and targetting of the pec minor,reduction of water/fat and stimulation of the pecs to increase thickness/lift.This may be the missing link,especially those who already have an otherwise impressive chest.
With the focus on 'lifting' the pec,if the nipple can be 'raised' (or appear to be) by even half-an-inch,think of the difference that would make.try pressing/pulling on the skin above the nipple and pulling up,picture that with supporting muscle underneath-see what I mean?
Individuality is a huge factor,this is as yet theory.I may be way off,no method is set in stone from the start,and they gain credibility from being tested on a randomized study group.
If you're frustrated and have no other options,please try it and get back to me.Any thoughts or feedback will be appreciated.
YOU are my study group.I will also try this with myself,and certain clients and members.
I concede it may simply be my chest responding to new stimulus,I had tried/incorporated these exercises a few times,but not to this extent,or focused/considered the pec MINOR much in general-I mean,who does?
At the very least,you can expect more growth due to trying something new if you haven't already tried these moves.
so,like I said,maybe I'm pissing against the wind.
and if a veteran reads this shit and likes any of it,gimme a goddamn invite to the Alpha Cell,mofo!