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KenKennedy

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strength of ancient archers, specifically Henry the 5ths longbowmen. Apparently some recovered longbows from the time period had a pull back poundage of 200lbs. Contemporary commentators said they could pull trees straight out of the ground by the roots as well.
I read once that their bones significantly remodeled themselves because of the intense asymmetric load.
 

Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
Variety Day
5 x 5 32 kg Loaded Clean
Alternated With
5 x 1 32 kg Turkish Get Up
3 minutes rest between sets

**Skipped Mobility Work**

 
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KenKennedy

Double-Digit Post Count
That's amazing. So their bones were just strong as heck?
Wikipedia says, "Skeletons of longbow archers are recognisably affected, with enlarged left arms and often osteophytes on left wrists, left shoulders and right fingers."

It references
Dr. A.J. Stirland. Raising the Dead: the Skeleton Crew of Henry VIII's Great Ship the Mary Rose. (Chichester 2002) As cited in Strickland & Hardy 2005
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
There's a picture of that stone in "Perfecting the Press" by Kenneth Jay.

Some amazing feats of strength for sure. It's so interesting to mull about the physical culture of ancient times. I'm especially interested in the rowing of ships and the strength of ancient archers, specifically Henry the 5ths longbowmen. Apparently some recovered longbows from the time period had a pull back poundage of 200lbs. Contemporary commentators said they could pull trees straight out of the ground by the roots as well.

View attachment 8135
It's the ancients who provided the inspiration for modern physical culture. There is a continuous tradition of physical culture linking the ancients with us. No one ever stopped doing the ancient sports and movements. We certainly have some innovations however like the barbell, gymnastic rings. The ancients certainly had what we now call gymnastics - it was thought of as a form of entertainment back then and was until recently called "tumbling" I think.
 

Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
Variety Day
5 x 1 32 kg Turkish Get Up

Notes
Was gonna do loaded cleans but I felt not strong enough today to do quality reps so I only stuck with get ups.

**Skipped Mobility Work**
 
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Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
It's the ancients who provided the inspiration for modern physical culture. There is a continuous tradition of physical culture linking the ancients with us. No one ever stopped doing the ancient sports and movements. We certainly have some innovations however like the barbell, gymnastic rings. The ancients certainly had what we now call gymnastics - it was thought of as a form of entertainment back then and was until recently called "tumbling" I think.
So it would be thought that most ancients used calisthenics primarily and wrestled for resistance training?
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
So it would be thought that most ancients used calisthenics primarily and wrestled for resistance training?
No, "tumbling" aka "acrobatics" was a highly developed physical performance art that certainly predates the Greeks. The purpose was to entertain crowds.

At the end of a study I wrote a while back is a list of exercises written down in Ancient times as "the" exercises, by a physician:

http://judo4mma.com/greekwrestling/ancient greek submission wrestling.pdf

The descriptions are a bit brief but I can illuminate them for you if you are curious. The "bending repeatedly at the waist" for instance is probably the "burpee" pushup, which is in fact the "sprawl" defence used in wrestling and in fact critical for wrestling. They deadlifted heavy objects, and also lighter ones in an interesting way as you'll read. They played catch with what to us would seem like heavy balls (the origin of the medicine ball) etc... Wrestling exercises were considered normal exercises along with all the others. You didn't have to be a wrestler to do them. An interesting point that I didn't know about at the time was that the wrestling school was attended to learn self-defence. Plotinus makes mention of this in one of his "Enneads" (philosophical tracts). I didn't know about this at the time I wrote the study.

I copied and pasted the relevant section below for you but the formatting is ugly:

****

Appendix: A List of Ancient Exercises from Galen’s De Sanitate Tuenda Philosotratus mentions that jumping weights are to be used by all athletes for strengthening the shoulders and hands, and round ones for the fingers as well29. The round ones are clearly harder to grip and thus afford better exercise for the fingers. The fact that he says the jumping weights are for the shoulders and hands is telling, since the jumping-weight exercises listed by Galen seem to exercise these parts and not the biceps, which is the target muscle area first coming to mind to many when they think of dumbbells. It may well be that the stone weights used by the athletes were normally too light or too off-balanced and awkward to use for bicep-curls. This is all Philostratus has to say about solo training outside of sport specific workouts such as hitting small and large punching bags for the boxers and pankratiasts respectively. Galen divides his exercises into three categories, which we may term ‘strong’, ‘rapid’ and ‘violent’, which is a combination of the preceding two30. Galen’s listing of the exercises gives us a fascinating glimpse into the everyday activities of the palaestrae, gymnasia and other more leisurely-areas of the ancient world. The affinities they have with the various sporting events can be made out: kicking of the legs for pankration, rope-climbing for wrestling, holding the arms up for boxing, Strong: 1)Digging 2)Picking up something heavy 3)Picking up something heavy and walking with it 4)Walking uphill 5)Climbing a rope using hands and feet: commonly done to train boys in the wrestling schools 6)Hanging-onto a rope or beam for as long as possible 7)Holding the arms straight out in front with fists closed 8)Holding the arms straight up with fists closed 9)Holding out the arms while a partner pulls them down 10)The preceding three exercises but while holding something heavy such asjumping-weights 11)Breaking loose from a wrestling waist-lock 12)Holding onto a person trying to escape from the waist-lock 13)Picking up a man who is bending over at the hips and lifting him up and swinging him around 14)Doing the same but bending oneself at the hips also when picking him up 15)Pushing chest to chest trying to force the opponent backwards 16)Hanging from another’s neck, attempting to drag him down Exercises requiring a wrestling-pit: a)Entwine your partner with both your legs around one of his and try to apply a choke or force his head backwards b)The same but using only one leg to entwine the opponent’s leg closest to yours
c)The same but using both legs to entwine both of the opponent’s legs Rapid 1)Running 2)Shadow-boxing 3)Boxing 4)Hitting punching bags 5)Throwing and catching a small ball while running 6)Running back and forth, reducing the length each time by a little until finished 7)Stand on the balls of the feet, put the arms up in the air and rapidly and alternately bringing them forward and back; stand near a wall if afraid oflosing one’s balance 8)Rolling on the wrestling-ground rapidly by oneself or with others 9)Rapidly changing places with people next to one in a tightly packed group 10)Jumping up and kicking both legs together backwards 11)Kicking the legs forward alternately 12)Move the arms up and down rapidly with open or closed fist, increasing in speed Violent: 1)Digging rapidly 2)Casting the discus 3)Jumping repeatedly with no rest 4)Throwing heavy spears and moving fast while wearing heavy armour 5)Any of the ‘strong’ exercises executed rapidly: presumably running uphill, swinging jumping-weights forward and back, and lifting them up and down, chin-ups and so on Other exercises: 1)Walking 2)Bending up and down repeatedly at the hips 3)Lifting a weight up from the ground 4)Holding up an object for a long time 5)Full and loud breathing 6)Placing two weights on the ground approximately six feet from each other, picking up the one on the left with the right hand and then the one on the right with the left hand, then in turn placing them back where they came from on the ground and doing this many times while keeping the feet stationary What do these exercises tell us about Ancient athletics? They tell us certainly which muscles were most prized. Clearly the back and shoulder muscles were considered of especial importance since so many of the exercises focus on these muscle-areas. The legs too get some attention with the jumping, kicking, walking and running. The focus on training for both applying and resisting chokes is apparent in the wrestling drills mentioned here. If we could only find push-ups, sit-ups, and benches, the list would seem to include quite everything a Twenty-First Century athlete could reasonably hope to find. But, push-ups, so good for the pectoral muscles, are not found here, nor are they alluded to. Exercises specifically for the stomach also seem to be lacking; in fact, bellies on ancient statuary protrude slightly. It may perhaps be too much to expect to find weight-lifting benches in ancient gymnasia, since they take up a lot of space that could be 34used for other activities. Certainly those exercises involving the picking up of weights involved the use of the biceps. We should of course not forget that wrestling is itself a form of weight-lifting and bodybuilding so wrestling would have developed many parts of the body not covered by these exercises.
 

North Coast Miller

More than 2500 posts
By the middle ages, a number of sources indicate that stones were used quite a bit, pushed and thrown. Presumably logs were also commonplace as fitness equipment. Ladders also used, vaulting and jumping in full armor was a common practice.

Use of heavy training versions of common weapons also used, in addition to a lot of wrestling. A number of sources recommended training twice a day, low fat diet also mentioned. Those in a warrior class or society were probably pretty darn buff, I don't think the statues are much of an exaggeration if at all, at least among the fortunate folks who didn't have to work the fields and give a bunch of it to the system. And even among them, how big and strong are you going to get before someone notices and gives you the honor of being drafted into the local lord's service as a shock troop/cannon fodder.

A bit of emphasis was placed on speed over raw strength.
You shall see gentleman, knights, and others to be most strong and nimble in running or leaping, or in vaulting, or in turning on horseback, and yet are not able by a great deal to bear so great a burden as a Country man or porter: But in contrary in running and leaping, the porter and Country man are most slow and heavy, neither know how to vault upon their horse without a ladder. And this proceeds of no other cause, than for that every man is not exercised in that which is most esteemed.
And they also understood at least a little bit about mass building, vs other forms of strength. I suspect their methods were quite a bit more nuanced than we can tell from the surviving literature. I'd love to go back in time for a day to do a medieval workout.

Let a man be never so strong and lusty, yet he shall deliver a blow more slow and with less force than another shall who is less strong, but more exercised: and without a doubt he shall so weary his arms, hands and body, that he cannot long endure to labor in any such business… such weariness is vanquished by exercise… but that the body feet and arms are so strengthen, that heavy things seems light, and that they are able to handle very nimbly any kind of weapon, and in brief overcome all kind of difficulty and hardness.

I found references to bow practice in the English countryside, IIRC group archery competition was a weekly practice. Unbelievable draw weights, the arrows must have been very heavy to stay stable upon release.
 

Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
Light Day
4(1) 24kg Military Press
Superset
4(1) Chin Ups
4 minute 24kg Snatch
3L/3R each Minute

**Skipped Mobility Work**
 
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Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
By the middle ages, a number of sources indicate that stones were used quite a bit, pushed and thrown. Presumably logs were also commonplace as fitness equipment. Ladders also used, vaulting and jumping in full armor was a common practice.

Use of heavy training versions of common weapons also used, in addition to a lot of wrestling. A number of sources recommended training twice a day, low fat diet also mentioned. Those in a warrior class or society were probably pretty darn buff, I don't think the statues are much of an exaggeration if at all, at least among the fortunate folks who didn't have to work the fields and give a bunch of it to the system. And even among them, how big and strong are you going to get before someone notices and gives you the honor of being drafted into the local lord's service as a shock troop/cannon fodder.

A bit of emphasis was placed on speed over raw strength.


And they also understood at least a little bit about mass building, vs other forms of strength. I suspect their methods were quite a bit more nuanced than we can tell from the surviving literature. I'd love to go back in time for a day to do a medieval workout.




I found references to bow practice in the English countryside, IIRC group archery competition was a weekly practice. Unbelievable draw weights, the arrows must have been very heavy to stay stable upon release.
I'll add two interesting points:

1. Vaulting on the pommel horse was a survival skill. People were often thrown or fell from horseback. I myself have been and thank goodness for judo breakfalls or I'd be seriously injured like several of my friends have been from horse falls!
2. Wars were not as frequent as we think. In fact most Europeans seemed to have felt that they lived in rather peaceful times during the Middle Ages. I've seen calculations adding up what percentage of the European population was directly involved in war in a typical year and it was very low. This was in fact one of the reasons for the crusades - nothing to do for knights, hahaha!
 

Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
Heavy Day
5(1,2,3) 24kg Clean and Press
Superset
5(1,2,3) Chin Ups
6 minute 24kg Hard Swings

**Skipped Mobility Work**
 
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North Coast Miller

More than 2500 posts
I'll add two interesting points:

1. Vaulting on the pommel horse was a survival skill. People were often thrown or fell from horseback. I myself have been and thank goodness for judo breakfalls or I'd be seriously injured like several of my friends have been from horse falls!
2. Wars were not as frequent as we think. In fact most Europeans seemed to have felt that they lived in rather peaceful times during the Middle Ages. I've seen calculations adding up what percentage of the European population was directly involved in war in a typical year and it was very low. This was in fact one of the reasons for the crusades - nothing to do for knights, hahaha!
I am reminded of how the warrior classes essentially functioned like sanctioned criminal gangs, so it made sense to always be up for a show of force or passive intimidation. Whether you were on foreign or home turf it payed to be ready to go.They didn't have dungeons for show.

The biggest danger for locals was losing the protection of their lord, they might be assimilated into another holding or subjected to a bit of looting and then assimilated. Civilians ravaged by this or that armed force barely registered as a footnote to the historians of the day.

But yes, I cannot recall the book I read that detailed this, but it compared the surface area of a major battle in the middle ages, in the Napoleonic period and WW1, with each successive period encompassing ever greater areas and leading to ever increasing on-the-books incidental loss of civilian life.
 

Epictetus

Double-Digit Post Count
I've been really struggling to find time for mobility because of my bad flaw. My "all or nothing" attitude. So this is what my mobility will look like now :
  • Everyday
    • Joint Circles
    • Convict Conditioning 2 Trifecta
    • Get Strong Warm Up
    • Bretzels
  • Make Note in Training Log
    • Anything mobility with a weight or Apparatus
      • Simple and Sinister Warm-Up
      • Kettlebell Arm Bars
      • Passive Bar Hanging
Make it so. -- Jean-Luc Picard
 
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