T Nation

Small guy. Strong Man?

Hi everyone i completely new to strong man training other then tossing around pieces of telephone polls, doing heavy farmer walks with anything i can find and of coarse wrestling at the university level. I am 155 lbs at 5 foot 11 and was wondering, how can some one my size utilize strong man training? where should i start? Any advice would help! Thanks!

Check out Kalle Beck:
http://tnation.T-Nation.com/hub/Kalle#myLogs/thread/3971459/0
http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/pictures_pics_photo_body_image_performance/a_strongman_drops_a_weight_class_and_gets_lean_?id=5288675&pageNo=0

He competes in Lightweight Strongman.

Are you wanting to utilize strongman training in order to compete in strongman or in order to improve your wresting? This is what is going to completely dictate how often, how heavy, and what events you would use.

Id like to utilize it in my off season wrestling training. I love that kind of lifting I’m just unsure of how to structure it and what exercises to do. A sample program would help a lot.

Andrew,
i’m not big fan of strict adherence to programmed training all the time, esp in your case for wrestling.
you just wanna get overall stronger and i assume without putting on much more body weight?

All of the strongman lifts will benefit you. So enjoy whatever events you can get your hands on.
2 x week is enough, learn the lifts or your equipment, then keep pushing your body to lift heavier and heavier.

Thanks for the shout out! just implement the strongman events into your gym lifting depending on what and when you have access to them. Be more specific to how you train now and what you have and it would help a lot with answering your questions

I have 1000’s of well researched Fitness/Martial Arts articles from many years,
and ONE consistent theme of Small Guys and strength is training ABS…Focus on the Midsection Greatly,
Good Solid Abdominals are the ‘Fulcrum’ of overall Body Strength, the crucial ‘connection’
between the upper and lower body that blows my mind most people in the Gym I’ve seen overlook.
The Late Bruce Lee was VERY Strong for his small frame…Isometric Training was his main
training method for this…Funny, one of the most feared and respected Men of the The 20th Century
in the Fitness/Martial Arts Community was less than 140 Lbs soaking wet…lol.
Start with Abs, and Just 3 more exercises
that hit almost every Muscle Group in the Body like Deadlifts, Squats, and Incline Bench Presses to
increase overall Strength fairly quickly, the details on other exercises I wouldn’t worry about
much yet, there’s lots to learn So keep it simple at first, 4 exercises that hit practically ALL your
Muscles.

[quote]Karado wrote:
I have 1000’s of well researched Fitness/Martial Arts articles from many years,
and ONE consistent theme of Small Guys and strength is training ABS…Focus on the Midsection Greatly,
Good Solid Abdominals are the ‘Fulcrum’ of overall Body Strength, the crucial ‘connection’
between the upper and lower body that blows my mind most people in the Gym I’ve seen overlook.
The Late Bruce Lee was VERY Strong for his small frame…Isometric Training was his main
training method for this…Funny, one of the most feared and respected Men of the The 20th Century
in the Fitness/Martial Arts Community was less than 140 Lbs soaking wet…lol.
Start with Abs, and Just 3 more exercises
that hit almost every Muscle Group in the Body like Deadlifts, Squats, and Incline Bench Presses to
increase overall Strength fairly quickly, the details on other exercises I wouldn’t worry about
much yet, there’s lots to learn So keep it simple at first, 4 exercises that hit practically ALL your
Muscles.[/quote]
I’m curious if you think that ab training is more important for a small guy than a big guy. I’ve heard the opposite, but am not sure. The reasoning I was given is that a larger (specifically taller) guy has to fight more of a lever arm with his abs. Thus abdominal strength is more important. I guess the reverse of that is that a shorter guy won’t get as much abdominal stimulus from other lifts (overhead, squat, dead, etc.).

I’m 5’10" and don’t do isolation ab work. I’m not that strong yet and am just working on getting my main lifts up, but I would like to do strongman eventually. I’m on a beginner program and still getting good linear gains on the main compound lifts. Should I add isolation ab work?

[quote]Silyak wrote:

[quote]Karado wrote:
I have 1000’s of well researched Fitness/Martial Arts articles from many years,
and ONE consistent theme of Small Guys and strength is training ABS…Focus on the Midsection Greatly,
Good Solid Abdominals are the ‘Fulcrum’ of overall Body Strength, the crucial ‘connection’
between the upper and lower body that blows my mind most people in the Gym I’ve seen overlook.
The Late Bruce Lee was VERY Strong for his small frame…Isometric Training was his main
training method for this…Funny, one of the most feared and respected Men of the The 20th Century
in the Fitness/Martial Arts Community was less than 140 Lbs soaking wet…lol.
Start with Abs, and Just 3 more exercises
that hit almost every Muscle Group in the Body like Deadlifts, Squats, and Incline Bench Presses to
increase overall Strength fairly quickly, the details on other exercises I wouldn’t worry about
much yet, there’s lots to learn So keep it simple at first, 4 exercises that hit practically ALL your
Muscles.[/quote]
I’m curious if you think that ab training is more important for a small guy than a big guy. I’ve heard the opposite, but am not sure. The reasoning I was given is that a larger (specifically taller) guy has to fight more of a lever arm with his abs. Thus abdominal strength is more important. I guess the reverse of that is that a shorter guy won’t get as much abdominal stimulus from other lifts (overhead, squat, dead, etc.).

I’m 5’10" and don’t do isolation ab work. I’m not that strong yet and am just working on getting my main lifts up, but I would like to do strongman eventually. I’m on a beginner program and still getting good linear gains on the main compound lifts. Should I add isolation ab work?[/quote]

I can speak if you are a heavir strongman you can use that bulk to somewhat make up for weak abs on some of the moving events. After I lost 30 something pounds and have a fairly small waist you need a strong core to handle 600+lb yokes for sure.

If you want to eventually do strongman start doing strongman now. You can load whatever weight you want on the implements for the most part.

Training Abs for strongman train them heavy! I love weighted situps with plates held at arms length, ab rollouts (wheel) Hanging leg raises (toes above bar!) and kneeling ab pulldowns they have done wonders for me

Thanks for the thoughts on Abs; I’ll definitely start trying to work that in.

I’d love to start doing strongman now, but I don’t have access to the implements. Within the next year I hope to buy a house and then start to fill out a garage gym with some strongman implements. For now, I’m stuck lifting at the local YMCA, which limits me to conventional barbells, dumbbells and machines. I’ve looked for a gym with implements nearby but haven’t found any within a distance that would really allow frequent travel.

Thanks everyone for your input ! I am currently doing the 5/3/1 program and am having great results in my strength gains. And the carry over to wrestling is also so far great. Im about 160 Lb now. After this season is up id like to find and implement tires, sledge hammer work and more farmers walks. Whitch leads me to a great question and that is how to implement those types of things into a program that also have the main lifts, such as over head press, squats, dead lifts and bench press.

Thanks everyone,

Sincerely Andrew

Being 5’11" you have plenty of room to gain weight. I by no means gain weight very easily but have pushed my weight up to a lean 195 over the past 6 years and I started out at 155 like you. I compete at the 175 (just placed 4th at Nationals 2013 and will be heading to worlds) and 200 pound level in strongman. The 175ers are freaky strong for their bodyweight and very very athletic. If you pay attention to strongman at the amature level you will begin to notice that the most athletic stronger guys tend to win at the lighter weight classes. Sometimes plain old brute strength doesn’t pan out, speed and athleticism play roles in the various strongman events.

Focus on the basics, eat your way up to an appropriate body weight and train various events to get familiar with them. They all require technique so learn as much as you can from different competitors because sometimes one technique won’t work for you as well as it does for someone else.