Tuesday, 30 April 2013

WPU Strength Club: Video Highlights

Bj Cj M Swaby

Ok, so it took me a week, but finally I got it done!  Here are the video highlights from the WPU Strength Club session.

Check it out. Looks like great fun right?

If you want to find out more about the next WPU Strength Club Session in May go to http://wildphysiqueunleashed.eventbrite.com

Yours in strength


Dealing with shoulder bursitis


By Richard Aitchison

Everyone that trains seriously, competitively or otherwise at some point will realize they’re not indestructible machines and from time to time suffer injuries.
It happens to the best of us and I’m no different having had a plethora of different injuries over the years.
I could blame them on a number of things, bad form, hard sparring, wear and tear etc etc, but in the tradition of competitive pride that annoying niggle is ignored, “worked through” and inevitably becomes a fully blown “I’m going to have to take a month off” setback.
With that in mind I thought I’d tell you about my most recent endeavor in to the world setbacks.
So yes, the niggle was ignored and I quickly became aware that something was drastically wrong when I had to keep changing my training regime to fit around the increasing pain I felt in my shoulder. To the point, all pressing movements were out, any kind of pull ups were out, any bicep isolation exercises were out and I had virtually no external rotation.   
I always find seeking help with these kinds of issues a bit hit and miss. Below par therapists usually far outweigh the good and knowledgeable ones, luckily however, I had been introduced to Micheal Bordignon of Northern myotherapy previously and was very pleased when, after describing the symptoms and the inevitable “worst case scenario” talk which involved musings of a labral tear, he actually identified the problem to be bursitis.
Shoulder bursitis is inflammation of the bursa sac, a small cushion of fluid between the acromion and a number of tendons including subscapularis, supraspinatus, and bicep. It helps reduce friction as the tendons 

move back and forth.
With bursitis there is almost certainly going to be tendonitis . For me, this was definitely the case. I had increasingly aggravated the bicep and subscapularis tendons to a point they were so swollen they had started to push on the bursa which then caused it to become irritated.
The pain is quite acute especially at the front of the shoulder and is easily pinpointed which is good in terms of diagnosis. The pain, although sharp and annoying is bearable, and I found in the early stages of the injury that, although painful initially it subsided during training as I began to warm up. Obviously, at this point I should have been listening to my body as it began to get worse and restrictions in my range of motion were becoming more apparent especially regarding external rotation, which at its worst was less than half of what it should be and very painful under load.
Contributing factors
After diagnosing the bursitis and tendonitis we found with a little more investigating that the fundamental reason for the occurrence was an unstable shoulder. Due to lack of development, the shoulder had dropped down and forward effectively decreasing the gap between the acromion and top of the humerus, especially when raising the arm laterally and anteriorly. It’s fair to say i had been aware of this to some degree for some time prior to the injury, however, despite my best efforts to employ good form and muscle recruitment it was a case of too little too late and I believe without the right corrective procedures it was a lost cause. 

Specifically, the muscles around my scapular, mainly subscapularis and infraspinatus were the culprits, to a lesser extent teres minor, supraspinatus and the superior portion of my trapezius were involved also. Underdevelopment due to wrong muscle recruitment in this instance can really highlight how important initial programming is. We know it only takes a few repetitions to properly program a correct procedure but can take hundreds to re-program a bad one which, essentially, I’m having to do now. ‘Start as you mean to go on’, I believe the saying goes.
Proprioception - the ability to sense the position and location and orientation and movement of the body and its parts.
For rehabilitation to be successful I had to employ the use of a series of proprioceptive exercises. Contrary to what seems like popular belief amongst some therapists (I say this from experience), rotator cuff exercises involving internal/external rotation on several different planes was not an option .Because of the position of my shoulder the very movements involved in said exercises would have only served to aggravate the tendons further.
I see proprioceptive exercises as a way of isolating the specific muscles or groups of muscles affected, obviously to increase strength in the area but also to get good mental connection and therefore efficient motor unit recruitment, so when you’ve reprogrammed how a certain muscle should contract through a certain range, recruiting those muscles through more advanced movements becomes second nature.
The exercises prescribed for rehabilitation, a combination of isometric contractions and movements under contraction, target the muscles of the shoulder girdle to strengthen and reposition it in such a way that it effectively increases the gap between the acromion and humerus relieving pressure on the bursa and tendons and allowing the inflammation to settle.
So, a few things to highlight, obviously being aware of imbalances in muscular recruitment and development, and any other issues with anatomical positioning could help in self assessing potential problems. Admittedly, this injury probably could have been avoided altogether and as it is I’m now in my fifth month of dealing with it.  Also, I feel I should mention again the importance of seeking a good therapist to work with, a lot of the time I have spent dealing with this issue was because of bad advice that was detrimental to the healing process and its fair to say that since working with Michael I have made more progress in the last month than at any other time.


Monday, 29 April 2013

WPU Strength Club May Session

The W.P.U Strength Club had a great inaugural session.  If you want to get involved in strongman style training in london, the booking for the May session is now live.

Sunday May 26th down at the W.P.U Strength Club HQ, Crossfit Bold will be another day for strongman style strength training and challenges for the brave hearts.

Guys and girls, all levels welcome.  Spaces are limited to ensure quality training and access to all the kit.  You can book your spot by clicking the link below now


See you in May, any questions please do get in contact via the link above.

    Yours in strength


Darren grafting on the Olypmic Platform
Hannah mastering the Zercher Squat.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

DeadLift Dynamite

Deadlift Dynamite? That's what I'll be needing if I am to win the deadlift in the southern area qualifiers for Britains Natural Strongest Man (BNSM). Last year, my friend and strongman athlete Richard Senewald knocked out 12 reps at 230 to take joint first. Impressive right?

7 Weeks out and here is where I am at the moment.

Got some work to do. As I'm sure you know, There are only certain products I recommend, they have to be of quality, and have to add value. The same goes for the other Strength Coaches I work with.  Luckily I've worked with some of the best, including world record holder Andy Bolton.Think I might give this a go to fine tune my technique, strength and endurance.  Lets see what happens...

Andy Bolton in action......

Some of my training toys have arrived at Crossfit Bold where I am currently training, so piece by piece everything is falling into place.

Friday, 5 April 2013

8 Weeks Out

Cj M Swaby

I thought I'd set myself a challenge. I was becoming comfortable being comfortable and I thought that with the start of the WPU Strength Club, I had better lead by example. So I did.

I'm 8 weeks out. On June 1st 2013 I will be competing in the Southern area qualifiers for  Britain's Natural Strongest Man in the U105kg  category in Oxford.  This will be my second competition.  I've got that nervous excited energy in the pit of my stomach, and looking forward to getting into the arena.

I am currently 96/97kg and my strength is currently off the mark. But come 1st June I am sure it will be.
Do you want to know what the event involves?  Well here it is?

105kg Log lift for reps
230kg Deadlift for reps
110kg & 130kg Farmers Walk

Olympic Bar to overhead. Maximum weight wins (no continental cleans)

Plus medley to finish.

Too easy right?  Each week I will be blogging about my training down at Crossfit Bold and Energie Gym in Fulham leading up to the competition.  I'll certainly be reviewing what I learned from the legendary Andy Bolton.

Bricking it? Yes.
Excited? Sure bloody.