Articles from June 2011



National Championships

by Thom Van Vleck AND Al Myers

USAWA Nationals: 2011 Official Meet Report

Group picture from the 2011 USAWA National Championships.

The 2011 USAWA Nationals held in Kirksville, Missouri and hosted by the Jackson Weightlifting Club on June 25th is now in the record books. The event was held in the old Willard School Gym. This building is around 75 years old and for many of the older lifters, it was the type of gym they grew up in! It had old, hardwood floors and a stage on one side with baskets at each end. There was a partitioned warm up area at one end with the main platform at center court. The platforms were well constructed with the main one being 12′x12′. We had a nice light system for the judges and a top notch PA system for the announcer (Al Myers). Wayne Smith, honored guest and original JWC member, made the comment that Al was the best announcer he had ever heard and since Wayne has attended many Olympic lifting Nationals, a World Championships (in Columbus, Ohio when Alexeev broke the 500lb C&J barrier) and even a Pan Am Games I thought that said a lot!!!!

The morning session included the Women and the older master lifters. Amber Glasgow won the women’s overall with Susan Sees getting second in her first ever trip to the USAWA Nationals! Helen Kahn was a close second to Susan.

Three guys that must be mentioned in this early morning group includes Mike Murdock, Dean Ross, and Rudy Bletscher.  These guys have had some epic battles going head to head in the past but what sets them apart is the great respect they have for one another and the wonderful encouragement they give each other. Denny Habecker and Dennis Mitchell both traveled a long way to compete and did some fantastic lifting. I know my mother guessed Denny was 20 years younger than his actual age (see….weight training keeps you young!) and Wayne Smith was so inspired by Dennis Mitchell (they are the same age) that he told me he felt like training and competing again.

Now, let’s take a look a the overall top ten men’s lifters as adjusted by age and weight coefficients.

10. Joe Garcia. Joe was handicapped in this meet by the fact that we did not have a “heavy lift”. Joe is one of the greatest “heavy” lifters of all time but that did not stop him from cracking the top ten.

9. Denny Habecker. Denny came a long way to compete and did not disappoint. He also pulled double duty judging and his wife Judy was the scorekeeper all day long.

8. Dave Glasgow. Dave is looking at elbow surgery soon but that did not stop him from having a great day. All while coaching Team Ledaig to the team championships.

7. John O’Brien. John came in at a heavy 290lbs and he had power to spare. He seemed to be strongest on his third attempts. John was the JWC’s top finisher. John made an easy 240lb Cheat Curl that showed his explosiveness.

6. Randy Smith. Randy has been a top finisher for years in the USAWA and did not disappoint. His Continental of 225lbs on the thick bar really impressed several of us.

5. Sammy Ibrahim was the top junior lifter and showed his potential with this top 5 finish in the men’s overall. Sammy broke several records in the process and his explosiveness in the Dumbbell Snatch was a sight to see.

4. Sam Cox, the winner of the first ever USAWA Old time Strongman contest was barely edged out by Chad Ullom who was 3rd. Sam is only 22 years old and will undoubtedly improve and be a force in the future.

3. Chad Ullom. To give you an idea of the caliber of the lifting in this contest, Chad is the CURRENT IAWA World Champion. No, he did not have an off day, it was just that great of a contest. Chad really impressed me with his  Zercher lift of 445 pounds.

2. Eric Todd. Eric usually competes in strongman competitions as a professional. He has been an All American Wrestler in College and is one of the toughest guys I’ve ever met. He dumped a Continental to the Chest attempt right across his leg and simply shrugged it off and on the the next lift.

Larry Traub of the Ledaig Heavy Athletics Club won the Overall Best Mens Lifter in his very first USAWA Nationals appearance.

1. Larry Traub. Larry is a 9 time Master’s National Champ in powerlifting as well has numerous other titles. He lived up to his pedigree by edging out the slimmest victory we’ve seen in some time. Eric missed his last Zercher attempt and had he made it he would have beaten Larry for the overall. Just 5lbs either way! Larry pulled a nice 560lbs Deadlift that in the end won the contest for him.

No meet report would be complete without those who work behind the scenes. I would especially like to thank my wife, Kelly, who helped me with lots of details on this meet. She was solely responsible for the Friday night meal, the lunch on meet day, the beautiful cake at the awards banquet, and making sure the banquet ran smoothly until I got there.

The loaders were JWC members Mitch Ridout and Tedd Van Vleck. I know they really wanted to compete, but took the bullet for the team and helped all day. Scorekeeping was done by Judy Habecker and the announcer was Al Myers. JWC Member Brett Kerby set up or spectacular sound system and made sure we were able to open our ceremony with the National Anthem.

Be sure and check back in the following days. We will have special reports on the USAWA Awards that took place at the awards banquet, the special display honoring past champions at the meet, and some of the “stories within the story” that really made this event special.

MEET RESULTS

RESULTS:

2011  USAWA National Championships
Kirksville, Missouri
June 25th, 2011

Meet Directer: Thom Van Vleck

Lifts:  Snatch – Dumbbell, One Arm, Curl – Cheat, Pullover and Push, Continental to Chest – Fulton Bar, Deadlift – 12″ Base, Zercher Lift

Officials (3 -0fficial system used on all lifts):  Session 1 – Steve Schmidt, Joe Garcia (head judge), Randy Smith; Session 2 – Steve Schmidt, Denny Habecker (head judge), Dennis Mitchell

Announcer:  Al Myers

Scorekeeper:  Judy Habecker

Loaders:  Mitch Ridout, Tedd Van Vleck

Photographer:  Flossy Mitchell

Sound System: Brett Kerby

WOMENS RESULTS

Lifter Age BWT Snat Crl P&P Con DL Zer Total Points
Amber Glasgow 32 142 45-R 75 110 85 240 155 710.0 784.8
Susan Sees 48 197 40-R 90 90 80 210 100 610.0 599.4
Helen Kahn 59 163 25-R 60 55 60 170 95 465.0 562.2

Extra attempts for records:

Amber Glasgow: Deadlift 12″ Base – 255#
Helen Kahn: Continental to chest – 75#
Helen Kahn: Deadlift 12″ Base – 185#
Susan Sees: Continental to Chest – 90#

MENS RESULTS

Lifter Age BWT Snat Crl P&P Con DL Zer Total Points
Larry Traub 57 203 90-R 190 235 195 560 325 1595 1668.7
Eric Todd 36 248 130-R 215 425 340 560 420 2090 1665.1
Chad Ullom 39 250 140-R 215 355 320 550 445 2025 1606.8
Sam Cox 22 215 130-R 185 325 315 505 405 1865 1601.7
Sammy Ibrahim 17 172 105-L 175 300 220 425 345 1570 1563.1
Randy Smith 56 196 90-R 170 225 225 405 300 1415 1495.5
John O’Brien 42 290 140-R 240 250 340 475 365 1810 1375.5
Dave Glasgow 57 248 90-R 175 245 195 440 300 1445 1356.7
Denny Habecker 68 194 70-R 120 235 150 325 231 1131 1327.2
Joe Garcia 57 209 90-R 150 225 200 315 225 1205 1239.9
Dean Ross 68 276 70-R 125 175 125 350 225 1070 1043.2
Mike Murdock 71 230 50-R 120 95 125 275 200 865 945.9
Rudy Bletscher 75 215 45-R 90 100 110 275 150 770 899.3
Dennis Mitchell 79 156 27.5-R 76 80 60 210 185 638.5 881.6
Bob Geib 68 268 50-R 115 115 85 300 225 890 880.2

Extra attempts for record:

Dennis Mitchell: Dumbbell Snatch -27.5# Left
Dennis Mitchell: Cheat Curl – 85#
Denny Habecker: Dumbbell Snatch – 75# Right
Denny Habecker: Pullover & Push – 245#
Bob Geib: Dumbbell Snatch – 60# Left
Bob Geib: Deadlift 12″ Base – 320#
Dean Ross: Zercher – 240#
Sammy Ibrahim: Dumbbell Snatch – 110# Left
Sammy Ibrahim: Deadlift 12″ Base – 440#
Chad Ullom: Dumbbell Snatch – 110# Left
John O’Brien: Dumbbell Snatch – 110# Left

NOTES:  BWT is bodyweight recorded in pounds. All lifts recorded in pounds.  Total is total pounds lifted.  Points are adjusted points amended for age and bodyweight.

BEST LIFTER AWARDS

BEST OVERALL WOMENS LIFTER – Amber Glasgow
BEST OVERALL MENS LIFTER – Larry Traub
BEST MEN JUNIOR LIFTER – Sammy Ibrahim
BEST MEN SENIOR LIFTER – Eric Todd
BEST WOMEN SENIOR LIFTER – Amber Glasgow
BEST WOMEN MASTERS LIFTER – Susan Sees
BEST MEN MASTERS LIFTER – Larry Traub
BEST MEN 40-44 MASTERS LIFTER – John O’Brien
BEST MEN 55-59 MASTERS LIFTER – Larry Traub
BEST MEN 65-69 MASTERS LIFTER – Denny Habecker
BEST MEN 70-74 MASTERS LIFTER – Mike Murdock
BEST MEN 75-79 MASTERS LIFTER – Rudy Bletscher

TEAM AWARD – Ledaig Heavy Athletics Club

NEWS FLASH – NATIONALS RESULTS

by Al Myers

I just got home from one of the BEST USAWA Nationals that I have ever been to!  It was a weekend packed with fun, great lifting, and camaraderie.  Eighteen lifters took part in this elite National Competition sanctioned by the USAWA, and hosted by meet director Thom Van Vleck of the JWC.  Thom did an extraordinary job as the meets director and provided amenities beyond what is expected.  We owe Thom a big “pat on the back” for his efforts.  This is not intended to be a meet report (I’ll leave that to Thom to write) but instead just a NEWS FLASH of the meet results.  A full report with full meet results will be available in a day or two.  The following are the top three women lifters and the top ten men lifters based on amended totals.

TOP 3 WOMEN LIFTERS

1.  Amber Glasgow – 784.8 points
2.  Susan Sees – 599.4 points
3.  Helen Kahn – 562.2 points

TOP 10 MEN LIFTERS

1.  Larry Traub -  1668.7 Points
2.  Eric Todd -  1665.1 Points
3.  Chad Ullom – 1606.8 Points
4.  Sam Cox – 1601.7 Points
5.  Sammy Ibrahim – 1563.1 Points
6.  Randy Smith -  1495.5 Points
7.  John O’Brien – 1375.5 Points
8.  Dave Glasgow – 1356.7 Points
9.  Denny Habecker - 1327.2 Points
10.  Joe Garcia – 1239.9 Points

TEAM CHAMPIONS - Ledaig Heavy Athletics

Old School Meet in Old School Gym: USAWA Nationals Location Change!

 by Thom Van Vleck

Attention: This article contains important information on a change in venue for the 2011 USAWA Nationals!

No School like the Old School: Williard Elementary, new location for the USAWA Nationals!!!

My Uncle Phil once told me, “Through no fault of your own….you always seem to have the worst luck”.  I guess he was saying that while I do most everything right the variables I can’t control seem to often conspire against me.  However, I have always believed that when the world gives you lemons make lemonade and then grill a nice steak to go with it!

I was notified today that the local National Guard Unit is being activated due to flooding in Missouri.  Their home is the Rieger Armory and since they are being activated we have lost that location as the meet site.   I was told this was the first time since 1993 this had happened!  This caused me to take off from work and search frantically for a new meet location!  I did NOT want anyone to be disappointed when they showed up!  As a result, I tried to be picky….but on short notice “beggars can’t be choosers”.  However, I think the location I have found will work out even better!

It is the old Williard School.  Just a few blocks away from the downtown square and the Dukum Inn where our banquet will be held.  The address is 707 N Centennial Street, Kirksville, MO 63501.  This is an old elementary school built about 80 years ago that has been converted into a private daycare.  A good friend of mine runs it and was willing to let us use the location.  The building is on the corner of Centennial and Cottonwood streets and the gym entrance is on the South side of the building (the Cottonwood street side).

This gym is straight out of the 1950’s and since we are an “old school” type lifting organization I thought it was pretty fitting that we end up in an “old school” for our meet.

If you have any questions on the location, just let me know.  I will have me cell phone on me that day and if you attend the annual meeting the night before we will tell you how to get to the meet.  Cottonwood actually intersects with Highway 63, which is the major North/South highway in town so it is actually only involves one turn to get there from the highway!  Looking forward to seeing everyone!

Zercher Lift: A Missouri Original

 by Thom Van Vleck

Denny Habecker completing the Zercher Lift. Denny will be at the 2011 USAWA Nationals where this lift will be contested

When I was selecting lifts for the 2011 USAWA Nationals to be held June 25 in Kirksville, Missouri I very carefully selected my lifts.  I was trying to get a good mix from each of the major categories.  I wanted a thick bar lift (Continental to Chest), a dumbbell lift/one arm lift (DB Snatch), a power type lift (Deadlift 12″ base), a miscellaneous lift (Cheat Curl), a pressing movement (Pull over and Press), and a squat movement.  For the squat movement I picked the Zercher!  I also wanted all the lift to come off the floor so that the meet could move along quickly and I was not sure how many spotters I would have.

While the list was then passed on the USAWA board to approve and they did approve it the only one that was questioned was the Zercher.  Not because it’s a “bad’ lift, but because it’s been used several times before and there was just some thought that maybe we should “mix it up” a little.  The problem for me was this was the ONE lift I felt I HAD to have in my meet.  The reason:  The Zercher was named after Ed Zercher and he’s a true MISSOURI born strongman!

The man himself: ED ZERCHER, one of Missouri's greatest strength athletes!

One of the things I like about the USAWA is it’s respect for history and the desire to make sure many of these lifts from bygone years are remembered and practiced.  Many of them have real merit and are often “rediscovered” in modern times.  Look at Kettlebell lifting!  My grandfather used to do Kettlebell training when I first stared lifting in the 1970’s and I remember thinking how “old fashioned” that was and he needed to get “modern” if he wanted to get strong!  How naive I was!   The Zercher has made a bit of a comeback for that same reason……in a way!

Many modern lifters have begun to do what they call “Zerk’s” or Zercher Squats.  They take a weight out of low squat rack or power rack, squat with the bar in the crooks of the arms, and then reload it on the rack.  This has become a variation that some lifters use in a mix with front and back squats but it is also one that guys have added that have trouble holding the bar in the front squat position or some other injury the precludes regular type squats.  But of course, as “Ol’ Clark” himself would tell you…..THIS IS NOT A ZERCHER!  Now, there’s nothing wrong with doing “Zerks” and they are a fine exercise to anyone’s repertoire of lifts.

There were some guys recently discussing “Zerks” on a message board and I got on there and pointed out the difference in what I thought was a polite, informative way.  One of them blew up!  He thought I was being petty bringing up the difference.  But to me, Ed Zercher developed that lift and we need to honor the man by keeping things straight!  With that said, here’s the rules for the Zercher lift:

C8.  Zercher Lift
The bar starts on the platform and at the lifter’s discretion the bar is deadlifted to a position where it may be supported on the knees or thighs.
Feet placement is optional, but the feet must be in line with the torso. The lifter will then bend down, with the bar resting on the legs, to a position in which the lifter is able to secure the bar in the crooks of the elbows. The lifter will then stand erect with the arms bent and the bar fixed at the articulation of the upper and lower arms.  The lifter’s arms may be inside or outside of the legs. The hands may be locked together. Once the bar is
motionless, the legs straight, the body erect with shoulders upright, an official will give a command to lower the bar. The bar must be returned to the platform under control for the lift to be complete. It is acceptable to drop the bar once it is below the level of the knees provided that the hands follow the bar to the platform.

So, come to Nationals and help me honor one of Missouri’s greatest Strongmen!  Let’s Zercher!

Deadlift – 12″ Base

 by Thom Van Vleck

Wilbur Miller doing a partial deadlift, but still demonstrating the proper foot placement for the 12" base dead lift

Let’s talk about the 12″ Base Deadlift.   This lift will be contested in the upcoming USAWA 2011 Nationals held by the Jackson Weightlifting Club in Kirksville, Missouri on June 28th.  Make sure you know the rules!

The USAWA Rule Book says:

B1.  Deadlift – 12 inch Base
The rules of the Deadlift apply except that the maximum width of foot placing must not exceed 12 inches between the inside of the lifter’s heels. It is recommended that a 12 inch space be marked on the platform by a drawn line or tape.
Now, just to cover all the bases, let’s cover the rules for the Deadlift just to be sure we all understand it:
A.   Deadlift
The bar will be placed on the platform at the lifter’s feet, directly in front of the lifter. The lifter will grip the bar with both hands with any grip and any hand spacing. The lifter may use an alternate grip in which the palms of the hands are opposed. The lift begins at the lifter’s discretion.  The bar may be uneven during the ascent, but it must finish evenly.  The bar may touch the legs during the ascent, but must not be rested on the legs, bounced, hitched, or lowered. Width of feet placement is optional, but the feet must be parallel and in line with the torso. Heels and toes may rise during the lift, but foot placing must not change.  No substance of any kind may be applied to the legs. When the legs are straight, the arms are straight, the shoulders erect, the bar motionless, the lifter will receive a command from an official to lower the bar.  The bar must be returned to the platform under control for the lift to be complete.

Pretty straight forward!  At the Nationals this year we WILL have tape on the floor to help the lifters and judges make the call.

Continental to Chest: It’s not a Clean!

 by Thom Van Vleck

The mid point of the Continental to Chest.

The Continental to Chest (Fulton bar) will be contested at the 2011 USAWA Nationals hosted by the Jackson Weightlifting Club.  Let’s get familiar with the rules:

A23.  Continental to Chest

The lifter starts with the bar on the platform in front of the lifter and raises it by any method of the lifter’s choosing onto the lifter’s chest above the pectoral muscle. The bar may be raised in one or a series of movements and may come to rest, be lowered, or make contact with any part of the legs and body during the lift. However, the bar must not be upended into any position on the body. Hand spacing and grip are of the lifter’s choosing and may be altered on the bar during the lift. The hands may be removed from the bar during the lift. The bar may come to rest on the lifter’s belt. A towel may be placed in the belt for the bar to rest on.  Touching the platform with a knee or the buttocks is permissible.  It is a disqualification for the bar or plates to touch the platform before the finish of the lift.   Once the lifter’s legs are straightened, the lifter’s body erect, the feet parallel and in line with the torso, the bar motionless, an official will give a command to lower the bar. The lift ends when the bar is placed on the platform under
control by the lifter.

F.  Fulton Bar (2” Bar) Lifts
Fulton Bar Lifts are approved for all bar lifts using a Fulton Bar and the rules of the individual lifts. 

 

We wanted to have one Fulton bar (or thick bar) lift and the Continental to Chest happens to be it.

In the past, this lift has often been referred to as the “Continental Clean”.  This was a pet peeve of  former USAWA secretary Bill Clark.  He would point out that the “Clean” refers to lifting the bar “cleanly” from the floor to the chest.  So, saying “Continental Clean” is an oxymoron……kind of like “near miss” or “alone together”.   Everyone knows what you mean but it really doesn’t make sense!

There’s a deeper story on how the Continental got it’s name.  In the early days of lifting, the British were often in competition with the French and German lifters (or Continental Europe, which did not include the British Isles).  The British took pride in how strictly they would lift the bar “cleanly” to the chest and would make fun of how the French and German would bounce the bar up anyway they could and the would refer to that method as the “Continental Style” in a negative fashion.  Later, the British were instrumental in the early lifting rules and the continental style was phased out and the clean style was accepted for major lifting competitions.  But the USAWA keeps the style alive and well!

So study the rules and get ready for some Continental action!

Meeting Agenda

by Al Myers

One of the big parts of our 2011 USAWA National Championship will be the Annual National Meeting (ANM) of the USAWA.   I have put together the meeting agenda, and it has been approved by the USAWA Executive Board.   There are no “big topics” on the agenda like there has been the last couple of years (i.e. the rulebook and the bylaws).  The biggest agenda item will be the election of officers.   All officer positions will be up for re-election (the USAWA bylaws require this every two years, on odd-numbered years).   Only those present at the meeting will have voting privileges (no proxy votes, which is also outlined in our bylaws).  So if you are upset about how the administration of the USAWA is “running the show”, this is your chance to voice your opinion or “throw your hat” into the candidate pool for an officer position. 

The ANM will be held on June 24th, Friday evening at 6:30 PM.  The meeting site will be the JWC Training Hall (for directions contact Thom or myself).  Immediately following the meeting a meal will be provided for the membership present.   Thom has assured me that this meal will be a “steak and potatoes” type of meal and NOT a “frank and beans” type of meal so bring your appetite.   The cost of this will be donations only.  

Business Agenda for the 2011 USAWA Annual National Meeting

1. Meeting called to order by USAWA President Denny Habecker

2. Reading of previous meetings minutes by USAWA Secretary Al Myers

3. Report of financial status by USAWA Treasurer Al Myers

4. Report from the Officials Director Joe Garcia

5. Report from the Website Director Al Myers

6. Report from the Records Director Joe Garcia

7. Report from the Awards Director Al Myers

8. Report from the Drug Enforcement Director Chad Ullom

9. Discussion and vote on new proposed lifts

10. Discussion and vote on Rulebook Changes

11. Discussion and vote on Online Store

12. Discussion of other new business brought forth by the membership

13. Accept bids for the 2012 National Championships

14. Election of officers

15. Meeting adjourned

Pullover and Push: Old School “Bench Pressing”

Pullover and Push as demonstrated by the great Arthur Saxon. He was a favorite of JWC "founding father" Dalton Jackson

by Thom Van Vleck

Those of you who know me know that I can’t make things simple.  I put a lot of thought into things and when I was thinking about lifts for the 2011 USAWA Nationals to be held June 25th in Kirksville, Missouri this process was in overdrive.  I wanted a pressing movement and I also wanted a lift that would honor my grandfather in some way.  Well, he was a big fan of Arthur Saxon and when I saw this photo in the USAWA photo archive it just sealed the deal for me that the Pullover and Push would be that “pressing” movement in the list of lifts for Nationals.

Let’s review the rules to make sure we know how to do the lifts!

A35.  Pullover and Push

The lifter will lie on his/her back on the platform with the bar placed on the platform above the lifter’s head.  Padding, such as a towel or mat, may be placed under the lifter’s body and elbows. The bar is gripped with the palms of the hands facing up and with the bar at arms’ length prior to the start of the lift.  Width of hand spacing and feet placement is optional. The lift begins at the lifter’s discretion. The lifter is allowed multiple rolls with the bar on the platform to gain momentum to the bar. Hands must remain on the bar throughout the lift. The lifter will then pull the bar over and onto the chest or upper abdomen resulting in the upper arms resting on the platform. The bar must not be rolled once on the chest. The bar or plates must not make contact with the platform once the bar leavesthe platform or it will result in disqualification. The lifter is allowed to move or lift the feet and hips during the pullover. Once the bar is on the chest or abdomen, the lifter may move the feet close to the hips, and raise the hipsto create a bridging or belly toss to propel the bar to arms’ length. This is done at the lifter’s discretion. The lifter is allowed feet and hip movement during the push. The lifter may press the bar instead of pushing the bar if desired.  Once the push has begun, the bar must not be lowered in any manner. Only one attempt at the push is allowed. The bar must lock out with even extension. Once the arms are straight, the lifter must lower the hips to the platform and straighten the legs to a flat position on the platform. The arms must remain straight during this time.   When the lifter and bar are motionless, an official will give a command to lower the bar. The lift ends when the bar is returned to the platform under control. It is acceptable to drop the bar behind the head in the return to the platform as long as the lifter maintains hand contact with the bar.

Now, you have to make sure you distinguish this lift from the Pullover and Press and the Pullover and Press with Wrestler’s Bridge.  They are often confused.  The last thing I will say is that if you have a big nose or a big head…..you may want to turn your head when you pull the weight over to the push position!  If you’ve ever done this lift, you know what I mean!  Now, come to the Nationals and try it first hand!

Can you Cheat on the Cheat Curl?

 by Thom Van Vleck

I love me some Cheat Curl! There may be some rule changes that bring the USAWA in line with IAWA rules that will open this up for lots of new records!

The Cheat Curl will be contested at the 2011 USAWA Nationals held June 25 and hosted by the Jackson Weightlifting Club in Kirksville, Missouri.  An interesting paradox will take place with this lift.  As always, the USAWA annual meeting will take place.  This is the one time when rule changes can be discussed, voted on, and passed.  Interestingly enough, one of the lifts being contested is the Cheat Curl.  The USAWA rules currently are different from the IAWA rules and there is a proposal to change the USAWA rules to bring them in line with the IAWA rules.  One of the major differences is the USAWA requires the feet to stay flat on the floor while the IAWA rules allow for the heels to raise.  So, according to the USAWA rules if you did a Cheat Curl following the IAWA rules…you’d be CHEATING?  So I guess it is possible to cheat on the Cheat Curl! Now, here’s where the paradox comes in.

Traditionally, the rules meeting has taken place after the meet.  Since the meeting can be lengthy and since there’s usually a banquet of some sorts afterwards Al Myers and myself decided to have the meeting the night before the meet.  That way, we get the “business” out of the way and the day of the meet only focuses on the lifting and the fun afterwards!  This has created an interesting situation.  One of the lifts being contested on Saturday may have the rules changed on Friday!  If so, then which rules apply!

Currently, the USAWA rules state:

D7.  Curl – Cheat
The bar begins on the platform, and at the lifter’s discretion, is picked up with a grip that has the palms of the hands facing up or away from the lifter. Feet placement and hand spacing is optional, but must remain the same throughout the lift.  Heels and toes must not rise during the lift. Once the lifter is upright in a standing position with the arms and legs straight, the bar on the thighs hanging at arms’ length, an official will give a
command to curl. The knees must remain locked and the legs straight during the lift. The lifter is permitted to bend at the waist, sway the body, or drop the shoulders to gain momentum of the bar. The bar may be lowered prior to the beginning of the curl. The bar must be curled from arms’ length to touching the upper chest or neck in one motion. Any downward movement of the bar during the curl is a disqualification. Once the bar is motionless, and the lifter is upright, an official will give a command to lower the bar. The lift ends when the bar returns to the platform under control by the lifter.

So, be ready for both sets of rules and we will see how this plays out!

Dumbbell Snatch

by Thom Van Vleck

USAWA Secretary Al Myers has the top Dumbbell Snatch in the Record List with this 146# lift at the 2010 Club Challenge.

Let’s take a look at the Dumbbell Snatch which is one of the lifts contested at the 2011 USAWA Nationals being held by the Jackson Weightilifting Club in Kirksville, Missouri on June 25th.  I have listed three rules because one references the other.  If you want the “quick” version, scroll down!

E18.  Snatch – Dumbbell, One Arm
The rules of the Bar Snatch – One Arm apply except one evenly loaded dumbbell is used. The dumbbell may start at any position on the platform. The dumbbell is allowed to rotate during the lift and may finish in any degree of rotation.

A45. Snatch – One Arm

The rules of the Snatch apply with these exceptions. Only one arm is used to perform the lift. The bar is gripped in the center with one hand using any grip, but the palm of the hand must be facing the lifter at the beginning of the lift. The non-lifting hand may be braced or supported on the thigh or knee of either leg but must not contact the bar, platform, or lifting arm during the lift or it will be a disqualification. The non-lifting hand must be clear of the body upon completion of the lift. The bar may be in any degree of rotation during the lift and upon the finish of the lift.  Once the bar is overhead motionless, the lifter’s body in an upright position, the lifting arm straight with a locked elbow, the feet parallel and in line with the torso, an official will give a command to lower the bar. The lift ends when the bar is returned to the platform under control. It is acceptable to use two hands in lowering the bar.

D.  Snatch

The bar will be placed on the platform, in front of the lifter’s feet.  The lifter will grip the bar with the palms of the hands facing the lifter, and then in one single and continuous movement lift the bar overhead to arm’s length. The lifter may choose any width of hand spacing.   The lift begins at the lifter’s discretion. The lifter may drop under the bar as it goes overhead, using a squat-style catch in which the legs are bent, or a split-style catch in which the legs are split. The lifter may also choose to drop only slightly, using a power-style catch. The bar may touch the lifter’s thighs and body during the lift. The feet may move during the lift.  No other part of the body other than the feet may touch the platform during the lift.  The turning over of the wrists must not take place until the bar has passed the top of the lifter’s head.  The bar must not touch the head, stop, or be pressed as it goes to an overhead position. The lifter will recover and stand when ready, from the squat or split position, to an upright standing position.  The bar must be maintained in a final motionless position overhead, with arms and legs fully extended, and the feet parallel and in line with the torso.  At this time, a command from an official is given to return the bar to the platform. The lift ends when the bar is brought back to the platform under control by the lifter.

WOW!  Did you get all that!  Here’s the short version:

Grip the dumbbell and take it overhead in one movement and catch it at arms length with the elbow locked, no press out.  You can drop under it anyway you want as long as nothing touches the floor but your feet.  The free hand may brace against the thigh or torso but may not touch the other hand and once you recover, this is important, the free hand must be away from the body.  Finally, you can go left or right handed, your choice at Nationals!

BACKYARD LIFTING TOYS

BY  DAVE GLASGOW

THIS IS JUST A SMALL SELECTION OF MY BACKYARD LIFTING TOYS.

THANKS TO SOME LESS THAN CONSCIENTIOUS WORKERS WHO PLUGGED TWO OF THE FOUR OIL WELLS ON OUR LAND, I SPENT A GOOD PORTION OF EASTER SUNDAY, CLEANING UP THEIR MESS.  THIS INVOLVED LOADING ROTTEN PIPE THAT WAS FULL OF RUST, CRUD AND ALL SORTS OF CORRUPTION THAT I WOULD RATHER NOT THINK ABOUT.  IT ALSO MADE FOR A WONDERFUL TIME TRYING TO TORCH THE PIPE AND SUCKER RODS INTO ACCEPTABLE LENGTHS FOR THE TRAILER.

IT WAS WHILE I WAS IN THE MIDDLE OF THIS PROJECT THAT I LOOKED AROUND ME TO SEE THE CORNUCOPIA OF HEAVY OBJECTS THAT WOULD MAKE FOR A GREAT WORKOUT WITHOUT EVER PICKING UP A BARBELL!!   NOW, I MUST SAY THAT, HAVING GROWN UP AROUND ALL THIS FODDER, IT DID NOT OCCUR TO ME, UNTIL I WAS WELL OUT OF MY PRIME, THAT THESE ARTICLES COULD AND SHOULD BE USED AS AN ADJUTANT TO A WELL ROUNDED LIFTING REGIME.   THERE HAS BEEN A LOT WRITTEN, AS OF LATE, ABOUT HEAVY LIFTING USING TRUCK TIRES, WHEEL BARROWS, RAILROAD TIES, HUGE STONE AS AN ADJUTANT TO BARBELLS.  THIS IS NOTHING NEW AND, WHILE NOT EVERYONE HAS ACCESS TO THE OBJECTS THAT, LITERALLY, LITTER OUR FARM, IT WOULD NOT BE HARD FOR EVEN THE MOST CITY BOUND PERSON TO FIND. IT ALSO OCCURRED TO ME THAT A GREAT COMPETITION COULD BE MADE WITH LITTLE TO NO PREPARATION AND OFFER A WELCOME RELIEF TO THE BARBELL “GRIND”.  IT WOULD BE ONE OF THOSE THINGS WHERE YOU SHOW UP WITH NO IDEA WHAT WAS GOING TO BE CONTESTED, NO WAY TO PREPARE OTHER THAN BEING “ALL-ROUND” STRONG.

I KNOW I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO HAS THE “CULTURAL ADVANTAGE” OF HOME GROWN LIFTING IMPLEMENTS.  WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR ‘BUILT IN’ DEVICES?  IT WOULD BE INTERESTING TO HEAR WHAT THE REST OF YOU HAVE IN YOUR OWN BACKYARD.

HMMMMMM…….. I WONDER WHAT KIND OF LIFTS I CAN COME UP WITH FOR A GOOD WEEKEND COMPETITION………

Ravenswood Formula

Thom Van Vleck flashes the "Red Light" at USAWA Heavy Lift Nationals as Head Judge Denny Habecker looks for the call. USAWA officials have a lot more to do than judging the lifts. There's a lot of math involved as well!

by Thom Van Vleck

I know we’ve probably overdone the talk on formulas to rate lifting performances, but here’s one more.  I got a copy of Peary Radar’s Lifting News (Sept. 1965) and notice a story on page 20 titled “A New Simplified Formula for Accurate Rating of Lifting Performances”.  This formula was being touted as an easy way to determine the best lifter.  Evidently, before calculators, the “long hand”  or “slide rule” multiplication using the “Hoffman Formula” often resulted on errors and hard feelings when the errors were revealed later.  As a result, the Ravenswood Formula was developed.

I’ll stop right here and say I’m not pushing this to be used by the USAWA nor do I know if it favors heavier lifters (which I’m not sure why anyone would think I would want that….well…maybe I would “like” that). This is just an interesting piece of lifting history from a time when formulas in lifting seemed to be quite the hot topic.

Laverne Myers and Denny Habecker have passed stringent testing to become USAWA officials

The Ravenswood Formula sought to remove the error prone difficulty of multiplication and replace it with the simplicity of adding two numbers together.  You were give two tables which are quite lengthy.  Table “A” had a bodyweight coefficient which went from 110lbs to 370lbs and Table “B” had a “Total” or lift poundage coefficient which went from 105lbs to 2550lbs.  You simply took the lifters weight and found the corresponding coefficient in Table A (a 4 digit number) and added it to the corresponding weight lifted/coefficient in table B (again, a 4 digit number).  The theory being that this formula was much more simple and less prone to a mathematical error.  You have to take the developer’s word that it’s “fair” or should I say “Accurate” as he does in the title.  The developer was Stanley Gorajczyk.  Not sure where “Ravenswood” came from….maybe easier to pronounce that “Gorajczyk”!   Stanley was an Olympic lifter who got 5th in the 1967 Senior Nationals, so he was a pretty decent lifter as well.

Al Myers looks like he's trying to talk Head Judge Denny Habecker into a good call, but really Denny is busy "doing the math" and calculating the winner using the formula!

I just found it another interesting part of lifting history and went with earlier articles on this website that discussed weightlifting formulas.   If you are interested in the tables let me know.  It might be interesting to compare the outcomes of this formula to others!

OLD ADAGES, NEW ADAGES

BY DAVE GLASGOW

Dave Glasgow now knows when to "take a break" from heavy training and enjoy a little relaxation in his rocking chair (photo contributed by the webmaster, which was taken a few weeks ago when Dave very successfully promoted a big Highland Games in Wichita, Kansas).

THERE IS AN ADAGE STATING, ‘IF ONE’S GOOD, TWO’S BETTER AND THREE’S JUST ENOUGH!” HOWEVER, IN TRAINING, THIS SAYING COULD NOT BE FARTHER FROM THE TRUTH!! LET ME EXPLAIN.

FOLKS WHO TRAIN WITH WEIGHTS ARE, FOR THE MOST PART, SELF-DRIVEN, HIGHLY MOTIVATED INDIVIDUALS. THEY SEE A MEANS TO THE GOAL THEY HAVE SET AND THEY “GET AFTER IT.” HOWEVER, IN MANY, MANY CASES, THIS ENTHUSIASM IS MISDIRECTED.

I WILL USE MY OWN EXPERIENCE AS AN EXAMPLE. WHEN I WAS JUST OUT OF COLLEGE, I BEGAN TRAINING ON MY OWN. ALL I KNEW WAS THE SPARSE, AND OFTEN MISLEADING, INFORMATION GLEANED FROM THE BODYBUILDING MAGAZINES OF THE TIME. I TOTALLY IGNORED, AS A WHOLE, THE INFO GIVEN BY PEARY RADAR IN THE NOW DEFUNCT, BUT NONE THE LESS VERY EXCELLENT ‘IRONMAN’.

BEING THAT ABOVE MENTIONED ‘ENTHUSIASTIC’ LIFTER, I WORKED THE SAME LIFTS TWICE A WEEK. BENCH, SQUAT, DEADLIFT. FIVE SETS OF FIVE. THOSE WERE MY ‘WORKING’ SETS!! SAME WEIGHT FOR EACH SET. SET AFTER SET, REP AFTER REP. I WORKED HARD BUT COULD NOT UNDERSTAND WHY I WAS MAKING VERY LITTLE PROGRESS! “IF ONE IS GOOD THEN TWO IS BETTER AND THREE JUST ENOUGH. WELL, THEN, BY GOD, FOUR TIMES A WEEK IS PERFECT!”. I THOUGHT!! WHEN WAS I TO RECOVER WITH THAT REGIME?? THE ANSWER? NEVER!! I HAD NO REAL RECOVERY TIME, AT ALL.

THERE ARE SO MANY FACTORS INVOLVED IN RECOVERY. AGE; WHAT ONE DOES FOR A LIVING; NUTRITION…. IT GOES ON AND ON. I FOUND THAT A GOOD NIGHTS SLEEP AND A COUPLE OF BEERS DID NOT CONSTITUTE RECOVERY.

WHEN WE WERE LIFTING IN COLLEGE, WE WOULD GO BALLS OUT FOR SIX WEEKS OR SO, THEN HAVE TO LAY OUT FOR A WEEK OR 10 DAYS FOR WHATEVER REASON. THEN WE WOULD COME BACK AND OUR LIFTS HAD ACTUALLY IMPROVED!! WHAT THE …???? SIMPLE. THE BODY HAD HAD TIME TO REBUILD AND ADAPT. WE WERE JUST TOO NAÏVE, AT THAT TIME, TO UNDERSTAND THE PHYSIOLOGY INVOLVED.

NOW, BEING MUCH OLDER AND WISER (!!??), I HAVE COME TO REALIZE THAT MOST TIMES A NEW ADAGE THAT HAS SPRUNG UP RECENTLY IS THE COURSE ONE SHOULD TAKE. LESS IS MORE!! WHEN YOU HAVE TO DRAG YOUR BUTT INTO A WORKOUT, CHANCES ARE YOU ARE JUST DEFEATING YOUR OBJECTIVE FROM THE GET GO. IN MY OPINION, YOU MIGHT BE BETTER OFF USING THAT HOUR OR SO THAT YOU WORKOUT TO TAKE A NAP. THAT, MY FRIENDS, MAY, INDEED, BE TIME WELL SPENT.

TRUTH IS, WHAT IS GOOD FOR LIFTER ‘A’, MAY NOT NECESSARILY, BE GOOD FOR LIFTER ‘B’. WE EACH HAVE TO FIND WHAT IS BEST FOR US AS INDIVIDUALS AND SEEK OUT OUR OWN LEVEL. THIS CAN ONLY BE ACCOMPLISHED BY A CONSTANT ‘TWEAKING’ OF OUR TRAINING, ESPECIALLY AS WE GET OLDER, TO GET MAXIMUM RESULTS FROM OUR EFFORTS. THIS TAKES TIME AND EFFORT; HOWEVER, I FEEL IT IS TIME WELL SPENT. NEVER FORGET!! TIME TAKES TIME!!

TRAIN HARD, SMART AND RECOVER. YOUR BODY WILL LOVE YOU FOR IT!!

###(AS A SIDE NOTE, I WOULD ENCOURAGE EVERY LIFTER TO READ WENDLER’S “5/3/1” PROGRAM. I FEEL HE MAKES SOME VERY VALID POINTS AND I HAVE HAD GOOD LUCK WITH THIS SCHEDULE. IT ALSO FITS IN PERFECTLY WITH MY THROWING AGENDA.)###

The Strongman Machine

by Al Myers

Advertising flyer for "The Strongman Machine"

One of the topics brought up recently on the USAWA Discussion Forum was the Schmidt’s Automatic Exerciser.  Recent USAWA member James Fuller found information on this old and unique piece of exercise equipment that was used primarily at the turn of the century.   After reading the descriptions of it, I immediately recognized that this piece of equipment I knew with another name.   I made one for the gym a few years ago after receiving an advertising  flyer about  it from Dale Friesz.  In the flyer it was called “The Strongman Machine”.  My guess is that the flyer was probably from the early 1900’s.

I never knew much about it at the time, except what was in the flyer. I know from this picture it is hard to decipher all the words since it is not very clear. This is my best interpretation of the writing:

“The Strong Man Machine is the only apparatus on the market to day that will develop your strength to its limit, and give you the Great Power and Super Strength of the Great and Famous Strongmen of the past: Sampson, Sandow, Saxon, Hackenschmidt, Jowett, Cyr, Travis, Jefferson, Kennedy and all the rest.  If you want Great Strength you have to handle great weights as all Strong Men have.  Short movement lifts, and exercise with heavy resistance are the only ways to develop your powers to their limit.  They are more natural than full movements.  Just watch a He-man at his heavy labor or a child as it progresses through childhood.  A horse takes long steps when running free but very short steps when pulling a heavy load.  I do not mean by this that a horse has more sense than human beings for man does the same thing.  It is natural and we just can’t help it.  Neither do I mean to say that this wonderful machine will take the place of your bar bell and dumb bell set but I do say that no set of weights are half complete unless you have enough weight to practice heavy lifts and exercises such as the Kennedy, Jefferson, Hand and Thigh, Hip and the 100s of other lifts and supporting feats where 100s and even 1000s of pounds may be handled.  The Strong Man Machine is adj. from 0 to 5000#.  Complete with 1 &2 hand lifting bar, chain, hip lifting belt, weight chart, 15# shot chamber and instructions.  A 55# machine for only $9.  Same as above machine but without the shot chamber (has a 1 1/16″ bar to fit your own bar bell plates) , a 25# machine for only $7.  Order from JIM EVANS GYM, 1900 Ave., E. Lubbock, Tex”

The Dino Gym's version of The Strongman Machine, or the Schmidt's Automatic Exerciser, whichever name you want to call it.

When I made the Dino Gym’s version of this Strongman Machine, I envisioned this as something I could train the Heavy Lifts with, especially when training time was limited and I didn’t want to take the time to load up the heavy bar.  Truthfully, I have only used it a handful of times as when I’m in the mood to train the heavy lifts I prefer “the real thing”.  So it has been just sitting in the corner of the gym, collecting dust.  I hadn’t really given it any recent thought until James brought it up on the forum.   I was intrigued why it was also called the Schmidt Automatic Exerciser (now I know someone in the USAWA who goes by the name of Schmidt who is pretty darn proficient in the heavy lifts!  But I also knew this had to be long before his time, and probably wasn’t named after him, although it SHOULD be!)  So I did a little research, which didn’t amount to much because there is very limited information on a subject like this on the internet.  The Oldtime Strongman Blog by John Wood had the most information.  In it he has a picture of the Professor Adrian Schmidt using this device and recommending it as a training implement to build strength in partial movements.  One of the “selling points” is since it is a lever apparatus, less weight needs to be loaded to have the same effect as more weight loaded on a heavy bar since the “leverage principle” comes into play.  The above flyer alluded to this when it stated that no weight set is complete unless you have enough weight to complete the exercise in question. 

Adrian Schmidt was quite the strongman and instructor.  He was not a big man by today’s standards – 5′9″ and 125 pounds.  He marketed his “Schmidt’s Automatic Exerciser” to his pupils, and  in his mail-order business, which was was one of the first mail order business’s geared to weightlifters.  He was a champion finger puller, and it is reported that he defeated such notable strongmen as Warren Lincoln Travis, Joe Nordquest, and German champion Karl Morke in finger pulling.  He also had done 10 chin ups using only the middle finger on his right hand!  That is ONE STRONG FINGER!

I found a picture of John Grimek using this device. (but then again, what exercise did John Grimek not do??).  It was said that Grimek would take his Automatic Exerciser with him when he traveled, just so he could do his heavy lifts in any gym, and not be dependant on them having the proper equipment or enough weights to do the heavy lifts.  That is a selling point in itself!!  But the question remains – which came first – The Strongman Machine or the Schmidt’s Automatic Exerciser?

1970 World Weightlifting Championships

by Al Myers

This is a picture of the Upper Darby Weightlifting team at the 1970 World Weightlifting Championships in Columbus, Ohio.

Denny Habecker graciously provided us a few more pictures taken at the 1970 World Weightlifting Championships. These pictures are CLASSIC – and definitely worth sharing in the USAWA Daily News!!  Thank you Denny!!!

Vasily Alexeev watching TV prior to the competition.

Vasily Alexeev stretching and warming up prior to the competition.

Mystery Picture

by Al Myers

Mystery Picture

I just found this picture, which I found very interesting.  Obviously, the BIG MAN in the center front is none other than the great superheavyweight Russian Weightlifter Vasily Alexeev.   Take a look at all the guys around him – do you recognize anyone??  Does anyone have any guesses when this picture was taken??  Please respond on the USAWA Discussion Forum if you can help me out with information on this picture.

PICTURE UPDATE

This mystery picture has stirred up lots of comments on the USAWA Discussion Forum.  Tom Ryan and Thom Van Vleck figured out when and where this picture was taken, and Scott Tully identified our USAWA President Denny Habecker as the man in the glasses.  This identification still left some confusion, as most of the guys in the picture are wearing glasses.  I finally have the “full report” on this picture, thanks to Denny.  The following is Denny’s comments regarding this picture,“The picture was taken on September 18, 1970 at the Ohio Stater Inn in Columbus, Ohio.  The lifters are all members of the Upper Darby Weightlifting team, except Alexseev of course.   The lifters seated are Dave Brown, Alexseev, and Woody Wilson.  The back row is me, Conrad Falvello, Libro Taglianetti, and Barry Branyon.  We had 2  rooms for the six of us and Alexeev’s room was right across the hall from ours  He came out of his room after he heard the noise of a fire cracker that was thrown into one of our rooms by one of the lifters from the other room.”

 

Joseph L. Greenstein, aka The Mighty Atom

by Dennis Mitchell

This photo of Joseph Greenstein, aka The Mighty Atom, was prominently displayed on the stage at York Barbell during the York Barbell Hall of Fame induction of The Mighty Atom.

In 1893 in the village of Suvalk, Poland, Joseph Greenstein was born.  He was born prematurely and was not expected to live more than a few hours. Somehow he did survive, however,  his childhood was a battle of various illnesses.  At the age of fourteen he had tuberculosis, and his parents were told that he would not survive.  Once again he proved the doctors wrong.  His life changed when he was caught sneaking into a circus to see a strongman called “Champion Volanco”.  The stagehand who caught him was in the proses of beating him up when “Champion Volanco” came to his rescue.  Volanco took a liking to Joseph and over the next eighteen months the two of them traveled with the Issakev Brothers Circus where Joseph learned how to develop and strengthen his body.  He changed so much that when he returned home his family didn’t recognize him.

With in the next few years Joseph got married and started wrestling under the name of “kid Greenstein”.  With anti-semitism on the rise in Europe, Joseph and his wife, Leah, left for America. This was sometime in 1914.  They settled in Galveston, Texas where he worked on the docks.  Another life changing event occurred at this time when a man who was obsessed with Leah tried to kill Joseph by shooting him.  The bullet hit him in his forehead, but instead of killing him, flattened out and fell to the ground.  Somehow, according to Joseph, this awakened his mental powers, and by focusing his mind he was able to do amazing strength feats.  This started his career as a strong man.

He was billed as The Mighty Atom because of his small size.  At 5′5″ he weighed 140 pounds.  He could drive nails through a board with his bare hands. He would lie on a bed of nails while supporting as many as fourteen men.  He would bend iron bars with his hand or with his teeth.  He could bite through chains, nails and coins, and lift weights and pull cars with his hair.  Along with his strongman act,  The Mighty Atom would give lectures on exercise, clean living, and diet.  It was while performing in Gilbertsville, PA that he met Lawrence “Slim” Farman.  Shortly after this meeting, The Mighty Atom became Slims mentor.  Later Slim was known as Slim the Hammer Man.  However, this is a story for another article.  Along with performing and lecturing, Joseph wrote several books.  He was written about several times in Ripley’s Believe it or Not, and in 1976 was in the Guinness book of World Records.  Both he and Slim the Hammer Man were honored at York Barbell on May 21, 2011 by being inducted into the York Barbell Hall of Fame.

The Mighty Atom was still performing into his 80’s.  He passed away on October 8, 1977 in Brooklyn New York.

Andrew Durniat & the Inch Dumbbell

by Al Myers

Andrew Durniat lifts the Dino Gym's Inch Dumbbell Replica at the 2010 Dino Gym Grip Challenge.

USAWA member Andrew Durniat did something at the York Barbell Festival that not very many lifters have done – he walked with a pair of Inch Dumbbells!  I was busy with the USAWA Heavy Lift Nationals at the time he did it, and unfortunately missed this feat.  I really wish I could have seen it!  He walked at least 50 feet, and then after he dropped the dumbbells, he picked them up again and walked back to the starting line.   I am just glad Jedd Johnson, of Diesel Crew,  caught this unbelievable Inch DB walk  on video and uploaded it on YouTube (YouTube Video of Andrew’s Inch Dumbbell Walk).  Without this proof, I might even have a hard time believing it! 

I have an Inch Dumbbell Replica in the Dino Gym.  Most of the time it is nothing more than a heavy doorstop – as most of the gym members can’t even budge it an inch off the floor.  The interesting thing about it is that it LOOKS liftable, but only after repeated failures and shaking your head in defeat, do you realize what a grip challenge it really is.  The Dino Gym’s Inch Dumbbell Replica has only been lifted by FIVE people, all of which are great grip lifters.  Let me give you a list of these guys, because they deserve the recognition -  Matt Graham (the first one), John Conner, Dave Brown, Matt Vincent, and now Andrew Durniat.  Andrew lifted it with ease at my 2010 Dino Gym Grip Challenge which was promoted by Dino Gym member Ben Edwards.  It seemed like he could hold it forever when I took his picture of him doing it.  At the York Festival I compared my hand size with that of Andrews.  It was humbling to say the least.  His fingers are at least an inch longer than mine, which is a very important part of most gripping feats. In the future,  Andrew Durniat is a name you will be hearing alot of in the world of strength!

Jackson Weightlifting Club Logo

by Thom Van Vleck

The modern JWC Logo.

The Jackson Weightlifting Club has a history that reaches back to 1928.  Like many Clubs and Gyms it has it’s own logo.  Above you will see the modern JWC Logo.  The modern logo has it’s root to the late 1950’s and is based on one that my Uncle Phil Jackson drew.   I have a copy of  that drawing, the original drawing is in Phil’s possession.

Copy of the original JWC logo first developed by Phil Jackson in the late 50's

There was a point I wanted to make a standard logo for the modern incarnation of the JWC.  After some experimentation, I came up with the modern logo and you will find it painted on the JWC Training Hall wall and it is often used on our meet shirts and other related JWC stuff.  In the modern JWC Logo you will find many elements present in the original and a few new things.  I used the shield and barbell, just like Uncle Phil did.  I used a copy of the York Barbell “deep dish” weights for the “barbell” part of the logo.  I felt this appropriate as this was the first Olympic set ever purchased by the JWC (and I still have it!).  I used the same shield but got rid of the small barbell plate at the middle point.  I kept the JWC on the diagonal and added a couple elements.  A lot of thought actually went into this.

First, I added the cross.  A Celtic style cross to celebrate the Celtic roots of the Jackson family.  But more importantly to signify our Christianity.  My family has always been strong in their faith and that is most notable in the fact that the modern JWC has an evangelism team that has done well over 200 strongman evangelism shows in the spirit of how Paul Anderson used to spread the Gospel with his feats of strength.  The cross is at the top because it is most important.  That section of the shield is the symbolic location of the heart and I wanted everyone to know that the JWC holds Christ in it’s heart.

The fancy JWC logo.

Second, the Anvil. It was added to symbolize Grandpa Jackson’s Anvil.  If you don’t know, the first inspiration for Dalton Jackson to lift weights was his father (Arthur Jackson) lifting his anvil overhead to impress his kids.  Later, around 1928, Dalton and his future brother-in-law, Coda Baugher, made some homemade weights and began to train.  Every generation since has lifted the anvil and it sits proudly in my gym to this day!  I  tried to make the shape exactly like the real anvil.  I also put it at the bottom because to me the anvil is the foundation of our club.  So now you know the history of the JWC logo.  I hope someday my kids take it and make it their own!

Middle Atlantic Postal

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT:


2011 Middle Atlantic Open Postal Meet

2011 Middle Atlantic Open Postal

Dates: Between June 1st and June 30th, 2011

Entry form must be postmarked by July 5th, 2011

Must be a current USAWA member to be eligible for competition

Entry Fee: None

Official USAWA rules apply as outlined in the Rule Book

Lifts:

Clean and Press – Reverse Grip

Curl – Dumbbell, Cheat, One Arm

Continental to Chest and Jerk

For an entry form – Middle Atlantic Open Postal Entry

National Championships

by Thom Van Vleck

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT

THE 2011 USAWA NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

Al Myers doing a 440 pound Zercher lift in the 2003 USAWA Nationals. The Zercher Lift will be part of the 2011 Nationals to honor the Oldtime Missouri Strongman Ed Zercher.

The 2011 USAWA National Championships will be hosted by the Jackson Weightlifting Club in Kirksville, Missouri!  I have a series of articles planned to keep everyone up to date on this meet so check back often.   Here is what we have decided to this point.

Date: June 25th, 2011

Location: Kirksville, Missouri (exact venue to be decided)

Cost: Entry $50  (plus up to date USAWA membership)

Banquet: $25 per couple or $15 per person (Catered by Western’s Meat Market….a local legend for great food)

Awards: Plaques for age group and open winners, medals for all participants, and a special award for the best lifter

Shirts: Shirts will be provided to all entrants (details on design to come….but it will be special).

Travel & Lodging: www.Capeair.com (866 CAPE AIR) has daily flights from St. Louis to Kirksville for $49, so you can get from anywhere in the world right to town!  There are several motels such as the Budget Host, Holiday Inn Express, Knights Inn, Comfort Inn, Super 8, and Days Inn in Kirksville and just south of town is the Depot Inn in Laplata, Missouri which is next to the Amtrak Station that connects from Chicago and Kansas City. There is another Amtrak station just an hour north that connects to Denver and Chicago and points beyond.  

Format: Morning Session and Afternoon Session.  Morning Session will begin at 10:00am.  Afternoon session will follow with a one hour break after the Morning Session is completed.  Morning and Afternoon Sessions will be determined by opening attempts.

Lifts: (performed in this order)

Snatch – Dumbbell, One Arm

Curl – Cheat

Pullover and Push

Continental to Chest – Fulton Bar

Deadlift – 12″ Base

Zercher Lift

I spent a lot of time thinking about these lifts.  I wanted to have at least one Fulton Bar lift and at least one Dumbbell lift.  I wanted to have a pure power lift (12″ Deadlift) and a pressing movement (Pullover and Push).  I wanted to have the Zercher because Ed Zercher is perhaps the best known Old time strongman from Missouri and me being a good ol’ Missouri boy and the fact that my Grandfather-in-law knew and lifted with Ed….well, that was a must!   Oh, and what about the Cheat Curl….well….I just like it!!!!

Start making plans and training now!!!

CLICK HERE FOR AN ENTRY FORM – Nationals2011