Be a Master of Movement

Augusta National’s membership policies have long been noted as racist and misogynist.  The biases of the institution are waved each year for the mystique of the The Masters, the first of the Majors for the PGA tour.  There’s been an Aussie drought at Augusta, but Adam Scott became the first to win when he beat Ángel Cabrera on the 2nd playoff hole.  Congratulations, Adam.

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When I first began golfing, Scott was a player that I enjoyed following because he’s a smaller guy (6′, 180lbs*) who plays a long ball, has an affinity for white hats, and has swing that I’ve modeled my own after.  We’re practically twins:

Similar swing, matching white hats.  We’re practically twins!  Although, he swings like that everytime, and an Australian accent sounds nicer than my slight New Yawk accent.  That’s fine.

If there’s one thing that all pro golfers have in common, it’s that they are masters of their craft.  This can include all professional athletes, and all of those who are getting paid for their movement skills.  Free safeties, dancers, orthopedic surgeons; they’ve all mastered the movements necessary for their professions.  Well, hopefully the surgeons have.  Sorry if you lost your fantasy league this year.

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These pros are masters of movement, be it a reactive sport such as football, or a repetitive sport such as golf.  There is a skill level that is obvious, and we can appreciate that professional movers regularly practice their activity to improve and refine their craft.  If they’re regularly practicing the same movements and becoming really awesome at them, why aren’t you doing the same thing?

We live in a rapidly changing world; instantaneous media and technological development have taught us to always expect changes.  We hate repeating things, but that is what works.

Training programs based on diversity or stylized on Muscle Confusion are fun.  They may provide a temporary fitness fix or a change from your regular routine.  Hey, sometimes I get bored as well,  but the diversity isn’t necessary.  Focusing on big bang-for-y0ur-buck movements will help you get stronger and leaner, which are probably part of your fitness goals anyway.  Be brilliant at the basics.  

Movements like squats, deadlifts, chin-ups/pull-ups, bench pressing, rowing variations, overhead presses, and loaded carries should make up the majority of your training program.

Let me repeat that.  Movements like squats, deadlifts, chin-ups/pull-ups, bench pressing, rowing variations, overhead presses, and loaded carries should make up the majority of your training program.  Thanks, ⌘+V.

If the majority means larger than half the total, this means that those exercises should make up at least 51% of your training program.  That’s 49% of your training that you can play around with to do whatever the hell you want.  That gives you time to what you love to do, be it moar squatz or your favorite Zumba or yoga class.  Fine with me, for now.

Focusing on fundamentals is important so you build movement competency and become comfortable moving weight.  Proper coaching will certainly help, but the Law of Repetition will help you get better at the exercises that you do the most.  Your time is better spent honing your squat technique than perfecting the pec deck.

Getting results are a matter of repeating smart training habits.  We over complicate exercise: Focusing on variations of “big” movements allows you be a master of movement.  Steady progress in these movements will yield better results than a smorgasbord of exercises.  The main exercises in an effective training program shouldn’t change more frequently than Facebook’s wall layout.  Damn you Zuckerberg, you did it again!

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