April 2015 Newsletter


We see it all the time, trainers, coaches, para – professionals, members & participants all throwing the odd disparaging glance at other people lifting steel in a manner they disapprove of or feel could be done better. I am sure everyone has been guilty of judging someone else’s chosen exercise, exercise – execution, range of motion or the weight being moved through varying ranges of motion.

The reality is that unless we have carried out the PAR-Q, executed the analysis & assessment for that particular person & subsequently written the specific exercise routine ourselves? Well, we are not entirely correct to adjudge the exercise/s they are executing.

Of course there are general contraindications, golden rules, certain do’s & do not’s in broad training terms & all are rightfully based on optimal sports science research & the latest training traits & trends.

That said, the debate of full range of motion versus partial range of motion & an individual’s definitions of the above are all up for debate to one extent or another. There are pros & cons to each argument under different circumstances, with different body types, ages, conditions & levels of varying fitness all to be considered into each equation.

One person’s full range of motion may often be quite different to another’s depending on injuries, surgery & genetically inherited musculoskeletal structure as well as birth abnormalities. This means that one person’s full range of motion while executing a good Olympic bar squat or Olympic bench press will be quite different from another’s.

There are also times when partial range of motion movement has been prescribed as a specific technique within a phased routine within a macro program as part of a periodised training schedule. Definitions & explanations can all get quite sports – science based & complex in their explanation & we want to keep this newsletter enjoyable in layperson’s terms too.

Based on this assumption what April’s newsletter is asking members & trainers to do is afford your fellow gym participant the benefit of the doubt & refrain from making them feel uncomfortable by throwing that harsh or disapproving look. If their entire exercise or range of motion is seriously concerning to you, then the most politically correct way of addressing your concerns is to ask them about the exercise & for pointers as to why they are training in that manner.

It causes less offence if you start your conversation with a question as to why the person might be following a certain routine or limited range of motion & follow that up with your wanting to learn new techniques etc. This way if the exercise has been given to them by a trainer or a coach for a specific reason it affords them the opportunity to explain why. Far better than you throwing them the remark that their range of motion is poor, their reps incomplete or the entire exercise being contraindicative.

As to the classic exercises that many feel are carried out poorly the most common three are the following 5. Standing Olympic Bar Squats, Prone Olympic Bar Bench Press, Dead Lifts, Barbell / Dumbbell & Kettle Bell Lunges & Standing Preacher Biceps Curls. These 5 mainstream free weight exercises are available to all members in various guises & under differing directives with a range of goals having been set by each trainer or coach.

So please do remember that the method, movement, range of motion, technique & speed at which you execute any of these 5 routines in particular, may well be quite different from that which you witness as a third party on the gym floor.

By all means show interest in someone else’s routine or exercise & even express concern if the exercise is contraindicative to your mind & experience but please always ask openly for clarification rather than telling or giving a directive as to that person doing something wrong.

Remember all personal trainers & coaches are readily available for free advice whenever they are in the club just ask if unsure.

Train well in April.

Daniel