Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Looking for an Upper Body Exercise?

Pound-for-pound, I've always thought gymnasts were high among those with useful strength. You must be strong and flexible to do gymnastics, and you can develop this kind of power using only your own bodyweight, no iron pumping necessary. (Though strength-training with weights can help, and some do that.)

There's a strong element of gymnastics in parkour, or free-running. I think this is an activity mostly suited for the young and bulletproof -- fun to watch -- but not something a man my age is going to take up and do well. It does, however, have some good training exercises I might be able to learn, one of which is called the muscle-up. You see this in ring competition in gymnastics, and it is a lot harder than it looks.

My chinning bar at home is in a doorway, and if I could manage this, I'd punch a hole in the ceiling with my head, but it's something I am going to try at the gym next time I go ...

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