z-health "review"

Michael Corrales

Level 3 Valued Member
Have to say that I've finished my exploration with z-health. My personal analysis is that it is very high effort/ time required, super low payoff. There are some interesting mobility drills and some clues about "threat" and "non-threat" moves. But it's just not a practical use of time for the normal person. And I have to say that I really gave it a good try.

We talk about WTH effect with KB's. HUGE carry-over to fighting, running, other activities in my opinion. z seems to be the opposite. No carry-over that I can gather.

20 rep squats, KB swings, TGU, bodyweight drills like convict conditioning = huge payoff

z drills = waste of time

Just the opinion of a guy who has been working out for 30+ years.....

Michael Corrales

Level 3 Valued Member
Have not attended any certs.

Bought some of their material (workbooks, dvds) and gave a diligent try to self study.  Went to a couple workshops with z trainers.  Have done 1:1 sessions with higher level z trainers.


Level 2 Valued Member
I don't think the R-Phase or I-Phase consumer products are very good, either. But if you worked with knowledgeable and experienced trainers and failed to get results... well, fair enough.

Steve Freides

Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Michael, first I will quote from the FAQ on this web site:

What is StrongFirst’s view of other training systems?

“I’m not saying you are wrong. I just know I’m right.” (Steve Baccari)


Second, I will offer my own experience. Having worked with several Z trainers, watched several DVD's, and read one book, I think there are good thing to learn from Z, and I have incorporated some of those things into my own training.

Just my opinion, your mileage may vary.


Kai Johnson

Level 2 Valued Member
Mike, we've talked on more than one occasion about z health in the past. I pretty much agree with you when it comes to my own experience.

I have a lot of respect for the people in z and it appears to work for them. I personally feel that this may be one of those things that works for some in a way that can be measured but not so much for others (me).

I do still use a couple of r phase drills for mobility work before training and they work great for that.


Level 4 Valued Member
My experience was similar to Michael's.  Back when Z was popular at DD I bought the R-Phase book and DVD.  I gave it a try, even visiting a high level Z trainer.  The trainer said I was doing it correctly, but quite frankly, I never saw what all the fuss was about.


Level 3 Valued Member
michael your post highlights some problems that make fitness a sham of a field.  the fact that you have been "working out" for 30 years doesnt make you right or wrong let's please stick to stuff like evidence and reasoning.  how nice would that be if fitness was based on scientific thinking.  you don't say what training you implemented from z-health, over what time period, and how you measured improvements so how can we come to any conclusion here?? a real conversation can not take place when using terms like "very high effort", "not a practical use of time", or "super low payoff" cause they are meaningless its like would a scientist that teaches in a university say "oh pluto, that is one of the super small planets" or "the earth used to be super cold, but then it got hotter again"? i mean i guess maybe if he was teaching junior high schools kids.

i've worked with two guys who go through z-health, one was supposedly a "z-health master" but he was a clown.  at the time i was having pain problems in my lower leg and he was making up wild theories about how maybe it was a pinched nerve in my neck and he made it worse it turned out my problem was a fractured fibula but he never thought to refer me to a physical therapist or a doctor.  i have learned a lot from the other man though and after i work with him i feel like a better athlete.  for instance my right hip used to pop all the time and i think the hip circles he had me doing solved that big problem.

Kai Johnson

Level 2 Valued Member
So you go from initially admonishing Mike and telling him to stick to evidence and reasoning as though his experience has no bearing on his opinion and then you go on to call one person a "clown" and then making the statement "I think..."?

Perhaps you might listen to your own advice before making your post and then just add your own experiences to the conversation...you know, without the hypocrisy?

Michael Corrales

Level 3 Valued Member
Daniel-  Please notice my post said "review" and not study or scientific review.  I also said "my exploration" and "my personal analysis".  It's my opinion like I stated in the OP.  I don't feel compelled, have time, or want to provide statistics or evidence.

One analytical data point I did provide was 30+ years experience working out and training.  To me an opinion of an experienced person can carry more credibility than someone new to the game.  But that's probably way more than enough said.


Steve/ Kai - I did learn some things that were interesting from the system.  And use a couple drills.  But I've found that spending more time on it than a couple drills every now and then does not get me anywhere.


Level 2 Valued Member
I think Daniel's point was more the complete absence of any explanation at all. You claimed you "really gave it a good try" but didn't say whether you were just going on the products, just working with a trainer (and of what level), had actually been to courses, or any combination of those. Not until I specifically inquired at least.

If we put it another way - if someone came on and posted "KB review: I trained with kettlebells and they don't work very well. Barbells are better.", wouldn't you probably ask for a bit more information as well? What program did they follow, for how long, did they work with an SFG trainer, etc?

So I don't think anybody is asking for a detailed science-level analysis, but it's hard to take anything away from your post without at least some discussion of what your experience actually involved.
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