Sunday, January 17, 2010

Lifting Up, Pushing Down (Pumping Up)

If one wanted to make a movement more difficult, they would create some apparatus to do so, and usually in that process, make the proper movement actually impossible, and so one is no longer performing the proper stimulative movement, but is back again, doing unproductive movements, and then wondering why, even though they are doing more, and struggling harder, they get very little of the effect they desired to achieve.

At which point, their coach or trainer would explain that they need to make the movement even more difficult to achieve -- in the reverse thinking in their opposite world, that if one desires a certain objective, one should do exactly the opposite to produce the hoped for reaction. Obviously, this is a primitive non-understanding in a random and chaotic world -- in which one might as well do anything, and not just the right thing, to obtain one's objectives -- because nothing really matters anyway. One is just killing time, until one gets "lucky."

But hopefully, many more are transitioning into a world in which there are clearly understandable reasons why things happen, and one can resort directly to them, instead of all the random activity hoping for a very specific result. Unfortunately, one of the last bastions of pre-scientific thinking, is the world of athletics -- in which brute force is thought to be the miracle ingredient over a clear understanding of cause and effect. It is even thought, that if one applies enough force, the clearly demonstrated pattern of cause and effect, can be overruled, and therefore ignored.

This is the main reason people don't believe in the effectiveness of conditioning programs: they don't make sense. One is just mesmerized by the voice of authority -- as though believing in that authority is again enough to overrule all the laws of physics and physiology.

Think about it: for just about everyone, "standing" on their toes as ballet dancers do, is quite easy to simulate lying in bed with no weight to support. One can thus achieve the position only a few in this world can support their entire bodyweight. This is probably the clearest example -- but if one thinks about other movement events, one notices it is easier to achieve proper body positioning when there is no resistance at all. In gymnastics for instance, one can extend the range of motion quite a bit farther, if one doesn't have to lift one's own bodyweight off of the parallel bars, and most will not push through beyond the minimal position that allows them to rest -- in a bone on bone lockout, rather than continuing to press oneself upwards until further movement, is absolutely not possible, and in that position, the muscles cannot contract further.

In that position of movement, all the muscles of the torso are contracted so maximally, that one is virtually impervious to any blow to the torso. That position should have some survival value in knowing and being able to effect at will, and as a conditioned response one is well-disposed towards. Essentially what one needs to do, is to press down with the upper half of the musculature, against the midsection and supporting structures -- forcing all the air out of the body with that torso compression/contraction. This "movement" produces the "washboard" appearance of the abdominal muscles -- which if practiced daily, becomes an actually easy appearance to effect.

Even if one has tremendous muscular development in the abdominal area (midsection), if one does not specifically practice that particular movement, one will not be able to achieve that impressive display (appearance) of those muscle structures. So unless one actually performs that movement, one doesn't know what the ultimate condition (shape) of those muscles actually are.

A lot of people can be very muscular, but lack the ability to exhibit that fact, because they never move into that position for doing so. On the other hand, those who know the position for a maximal display of that development, will surpass those who don't think that display important, and may regard it as even vain, or socially disapproved -- just as most people feel self-conscious, if not embarrassed, to do the very familiar stereotype of the double biceps pose/display. And most people are quite right in realizing they look awkward and self-conscious in those poses -- except the few that manage to look great at it. But that is because they practice many hours to achieve that effect -- in addition to long hours in the gym to pump their muscles beforehand, for even more spectacular dramatic effect.

But are those poses necessarily the best at displaying the musculature -- or achieving that development? Might there be more meaningful and aestethic poses than those that have been traditionally used for those competitions? -- which would create a very different looking development. People have very different ideas of what they think is the ultimate development of the human body, but usually, the most impressive and striking, is the ability to produce the greatest change in appearance -- as an indication of at least that great ability to do so.

But even the most impressive bodybuilding champions seem not to appreciate that aestethic as well as practical effect -- that the most impressive and striking, is the ability to change the most -- momentarily, and at will. Instead, many assume the appearance of moving statues -- rather than the dynamic transformation -- of muscles exploding into view, and out. as well. Most people are not as impressed, with a muscle that is always contracted, and expresses that unrelenting effort and constant tension.

But they become mesmerized by a body that is mostly fully relaxed, punctuated by an occasional glimpse of something infinitely greater -- which for an opposing player, keeps them guessing at what ultimate range of movement and abilities they are contending against.

If I were to create an apparatus to simulate this essential movement and development, it would be an oversized bicycle hand pump with a valve at the end of the hose to adjust the pressure (resistance) of the escaping air, while the range would enable the foot wide handle to be lifted up to the top of one's head before plunging downward to just above one's knees. That range would allow for the full range of movement at the wrists rotating palmward as the handle is raised as high as possible, and then flipping over to rotate in a knuckleward position as the handle was pushed as low as possible while retaining an upright posture. That lifting up and pushing down, is probably one of the most effective development movements -- but NOT requiring any apparatus to make even better. The movement itself, one will recognize, takes one through most of the range required to perform every other movement with great power and effectiveness.


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