The local Boy Scout troop invited me to set up a booth at their health fair this past weekend. It was held at a nearby church, not an overly big venue but I was happy to do it anyway. There were probably another 17-18 exhibitors ranging from massage therapy to martial arts. I decided to hold a kettlebell lifting contest and give away t-shirts, stickers and wristbands as prizes.
Besides one older gentlemen, the Scouts were the only ones to participate in the contest... and let me tell you, those kids cleaned me out! The rules were simple: press the kettlebell overhead as many times as possible and 50 reps won you a t-shirt. Everybody who tried got a sticker. They were allowed one hand switch and could push press or jerk the bell (no way I was going to try and explain the jerk to them though). I think most of the troop left with a Be-More Training shirt on. It was nice to see them excited about kettlebell lifting.
I put on a couple demonstrations as well. First I did a 150 rep jerk set with the 24kg... 75 reps per hand. After I had a while to catch my breath I showed them my "card trick" where I turn 1 deck of cards into 2. They were all pretty impressed with that. I also bent a couple nails and turned them on to the Captains of Crush grippers as well as a few other grip toys. The grip feats had the entire room surrounding my booth, exhibitors and attendees alike.
I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I would be shifting my training focus to something other than strongman competitions, well that's what I was referring to, is the performing side of strongman.
Showcasing my talents for those kids reminded me just how fun it is putting on strength shows. It's a different environment than when you are competing. When doing a strongman show, you are an entertainer, a performer. The opportunity to inspire people is much greater in this arena. You are not competing against anyone, not even really competing against yourself, you are just showing someone this cool thing you can do. Like a magic trick, only harder to do. :)
So that's what my training has been looking like lately. I'm back into grip training with a purpose (other than the obvious, stronger hands)!
Anyway, I hit a quick grip workout this morning and this is what it looked like...
Inch Dumbbell attempts - this consists of many failed attempts, some 2 hand pick ups released and held with one hand, and several holds with 1 finger on the bell to stop the rotation
Pony thumb trainer - 2 sets of as many reps as possible with each hand (note to self: left hand is considerably stronger on this exercise)
Grippers - 2 sets of 5 with a filed #2
Grade 5 bolt attempt - I've bent one of these before, a long time ago, but it was not to be today. I gave it all I had, off and on for a good 10 minutes. All I can say is that I got some good wrist isometrics from it.
One more set of Pony thumb trainer immediately followed by Inch DB rows with straps. The rows are as much for back strength as they are for breaking the mental barrier of lifting the Inch with one hand. I believe actually seeing myself lift it, with straps or otherwise, will eventually help me lift it. (Incidentally, I had a dream that I lifted it just last night. Go figure.)
Formulator wrist curls, 15lbs x 11.5 reps (the .5 means a failed attempt)
Portable wrist roller - 60 seconds