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Other products by Gymnastic Bodies:

B U I L D I N G THE G Y M N A S T I C B O D Y D V D S
The Companion DVDs to Building the Gymnastic Body

The Single Greatest Tool Ever Made for Building Upper Body Strength

Building the Gymnastic Body
THE SCIENCE OF GYMNASTICS STRENGTH TRAINING

Cover photo: Yang Wei at 2003 World Championships, ©Steve Lange

Building the Gymnastic Body
T HE S C I E N C E O F GYMNASTICS STRENGTH TRAINING

Christopher Sommer

Olympic Bodies, LLC

Published by Olympic Bodies, LLC 42140 N Mantle Way Anthem, Arizona 85206

Library of Congress Control Number: ISBN - 978-0-9821253-0-4

First Edition - September 2008 Printed and bound in Canada by Art Bookbindery

DISCLAIMER
The author and publisher of this material are not responsible in anymanner whatsoever for any injury that may occur through following the instructions contained in this material. The activities, physical and otherwise, described herein for informational purposes only, may be too strenuous or dangerous for some people and the reader(s) should consult a physician before engaging in them.

First a n d foremost to my family, w i t h o u t w h o m n o t h i n gelse matters, a n d to all of my students - past, present a n d future, from w h o m I always learn so m u c h m o r e t h a n I m a n a g e to teach

Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION CHAPTER ONE Gymnastics as Conditioning CHAPTER TWO General Information Tools of the Trade Basic Gymnastics Terminology The Selection of These Exercises H a n d s t a n d s & Press H a n d s t a n d s CHAPTER THREEBasic Strength CHAPTER FOUR Fundamental Static Positions L-sit Straddle L Manna Back Lever Front Lever Planche CHAPTER FIVE Upper Body Pressing F u n d a m e n t a l Bodyweight Exercises P u s h - u p Variations Dip Variations HSPU Variations Multi-plane Pressing Variations CHAPTER SIX Upper Body Pulling R o w Variations Pull-up Variations Curl Variations Multi-plane Pulling Variations CHAPTER SEVENCombined Pull/Press Muscle-up Variations Other CPP Variations CHAPTER EIGHT Core V-up Variations HLL Variations

Lower Back Variations Oblique Variations Straight Body Variations CHAPTER NINE Legs Deck Squat Variations Single Leg Squat Variations H a m s t r i n g Variations CHAPTER TEN Program Design Options Static Strength Training Basic Strength Training Integrated Training M a n a g i n gIntensity G r o u p Training APPENDIX A Tips for Increasing Pull-ups APPENDIX B Static Strength Only Training Results APPENDIX C 120 Muscle-ups in 15 minutes Index A Special Thanks

132 138 144

155 156 159 165

171 175 178 179 182

185

186

187 189 194

Introduction

W

e h a v e all seen t h e m on television d u r i n g the Olympics; these massive powerful m e n performing am a z i n g skills w i t h ease a n d grace. Watching t h e m perform, the question inevitably arises - are they as powerful as they a p p e a r to be? A n d the answer quite simply is - yes. W h a t will probably be even m o r e surprising to y o u is that they build their strength a n d p h y s i q u e s almost entirely w i t h various b o d y w e i g h t exercises. There are of course some s up p l e m e n t a l exercises w h e r e weights are utilized (i.e. w e i g h t e d leg lifts), h o w e v e r the central premise remains; these a m a z i n g athletes h a v e built the vast majority of their strength a n d p o w e r t h r o u g h the u s e of b o d y w e i g h t conditioning. The list of physical training requirements is long a n d can be rather d a u n t i n g to p r e p a r e aw o r l d class athlete: passive flexibility, active flexibility, joint preparation, static strength, d y n a m i c strength etc. etc. a n d in the past h a s only b e e n interesting in detail to those of us involved w i t h the physical p r e p a r a t i o n of champions. It a p p e a r s that times h a v e changed. This book a n d its c o m p a n i o n v o l u m e s are in response to the e...
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