With the advent of camera phones and social media networks for you to share every single thing you capture, gone are the days of having to actually step foot inside a gym to see people doing stupid shit.
Thanks to modern technology, I can now log into Instagram, for example, and get my fix of people performing fancy exercise movements that have absolutely zero substance.
…and I’m not talking about dumbbell kickbacks here!
With that said, it’s put people on blast time!!!
As large as the fitness community is on IG, it’s fairly small and we all pretty much run in the same circle. Due to this, many of you should have no problem figuring out who I’m talking about when I say there’s someone popping up on my timeline who not only seems to observe chest day EVERY SINGLE DAY OF THE WEEK but has recently taken to posting video clips of himself using the 45° leg press while also incline pressing a plate loaded barbell.
Maybe what I’m about to say is me just hating on him because I’m sooooooooo envious of his followers thinking he’s a beast for pulling off such a great feat of strength. Maybe not, because were either movement truly challenging his quads and upper pectorals then the person who I have yet to unfollow (but soon will) wouldn’t be able to perform them simultaneously. And if something isn’t challenging, what does that mean, folks?
If you’re a frequent visitor who’s been paying attention to what’s posted on this site, then you pretty much know that the running theme is that anything that doesn’t challenge you wastes your time more than builds muscle or burns fat because you’re not producing enough stress to prompt an adaptation by your body in response.
But that’s just a normal, clueless Average Joe doing normal, clueless Average Joe stuff.
What’s the excuse for a so-called “fitness professional” like Pauline Nordin, though?
What’d she do?
Why, on her IG account a few months ago she posted a vid of her doing something she dubbed a “box deadlift”. Many of her followers were apparently blown away by it, leaving comments to the tune of it looking awesome and their not being able to wait to incorporate it into their own workouts.
The box deadlift as demonstrated by Nordin is NOT to be confused with the box deadlift where a flat bench is placed behind you so your calves are pressed against it as you perform a deadlift — a variation that’s done by powerlifters to learn how to maintain a vertical shin angle and better engage the hamstrings as they pull the weight from the floor.
Having difficulty imagining it? Here’s a video for those of you with imagination impairments!
Unlike the real box deadlift, Nordin’s “box deadlift” has her deadlifting in the way that a box squat is done with a trainee squatting down onto a box or flat bench before exploding back upward with the weight.
Can’t picture that either? Well, she posted her video onto her IG feed on 17 December 2015. If you put your Americanness aside long enough to ignore that I write my calendar dates in a little-endian sequence like virtually everyone else in the civilized world, you’ll be able to figure out that you can use the provided date to scroll through her page and track down the video.
So mosey along now and get to hunting!
I take it that you’re back from your snooping expedition!
Nordin’s “box deadlift” looks dope, right? It’s an ingenious new movement that’s effective as fuck, huh? Betcha want to go try it too!
Well, don’t — unless you want people like me to double over in laughter with fingers pointing squarely at you.
See, there’s actually nothing behind Nordin’s “box deadlift” once you get past all the fancy bullshit packaging it’s wrapped in.
As only one commenter out of 32 correctly picked up on at the time of this writing, Nordin’s “box deadlift” is stupid because a standard deadlift is already performed from a dead stop, hence the clever name “DEADLIFT”. This fact thereby negates the need for one to sit down on a box. In comparison, a box has its place in squatting because squatting onto a seat forces you to pause in the hole (i.e. bottom of the movement), thus helping to eliminate the bounce-at-the-bottom effect that so many lifters use to ascend, a practice that robs them of recruiting more muscle fibers and thereby prompting greater growth in the legs.
Beyond that, as the same commenter also noted, Nordin ascending from a position of rest after sitting down on the box makes it difficult for her to actually pull the barbell from off the floor and activate the entire posterior chain, which is kinda sorta what the deadlift is all about and what makes it so effective.
I could get into more shit, like the one time I witnessed a gym bro recording his fellow gym bro use the 45° leg press with a fit chick sitting atop the sled while there was barely any weight loaded on the machine. However, there’s no need to further belabor the point, which is that you need to stop falling for the fancy shmancy shit that you see people doing in the gym, whether it’s in the weight room itself with your own two eyes or on social media somewhere.
That’s the only way to eradicate gym stupid, which spreads like a plague. Case in point is the leg press/chest press combo guy from above who has followers wanting to do what he’s doing after he got the idea from Terron Beckham, a moron posing as a trainer who in addition to leg pressing and incline benching at the same time also has clips of himself hands-free back squatting while doing cable pushdowns, hands-free back squatting while using the battle ropes, and bench pressing while on the vertical leg press machine.
What a dunce!
Anyway, by simply using your fucking brain and casting a critical eye you can save yourself from doing a stupid exercise that you saw someone else doing, a preventive action that effectively keeps you from being one of those stupid people at the gym doing stupid exercises who happens to take gym stupid to a whole new level.