Omni Machines

Posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2018 by John Wood
A rare look at Casey Viator training during The Colorado Experiment. Many of the machines used during the Colorado Experiment, dubbed the “Omni Machines” revolved around “negative” training techniques. The one Casey is using, for example, was an overhead press machine. On the right is the infamous “Mr. Happiness” negative bench press machine. Both of these machines were prototypes and never made it to actual production.

All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2018 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2018 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

The Dellinger FIles

Posted on Tuesday, February 20th, 2018 by John Wood

Rock Solid Training Information and Iron Game Memories from the man that lived it…
By now you should be familiar with the name Jan Dellinger… but if you aren’t, he worked for the York Barbell Company for over 25 years — where he was Bob Hoffman’s right hand man, assistant editor of Muscular Development Magazine, and even shared an office with strength legend John Grimek for a number of years. He’s caught more than a few workouts with past Mr. Americas, written dozens of training articles for several major publications and sold more quality barbells than you could shake a stick at.

Well I’ve known Jan for a long time and we have been corresponding by email for the last few years now. Over the course of our conversations he would often write up some interesting story which he saw or was a part of while he worked at York. Jan had also been watching the website with great interest and a few of the topics I have written about got his creative fires going.

You want to talk strength history? Jan was there…

Last fall Jan asked if he could write up a training article or two that might be posted on the website. Of course I agreed and a few days later Jan sent something over… It was a detailed article on sandbag training.

Jan had also mentioned that he had a few other topics that he would like to cover, and, remembering the material he had written from our correspondences,I suggested that I would be delighted to collect this material into book form. I told Jan to just go wild and write about anything that he saw fit.

As I mentioned earlier, Jan has seen a lot of things over his time at York Barbell, and has been training since he was in junior high himself so he knows his way around a barbell…

We took a look at what we had, narrowed it down to a hundred and twenty five pages and dubbed it “The Dellinger Files Vol.I” (I say “Volume I” because there we have several hundred more pages of material and memories from Jan and there will be subsequent volumes)

For the time being though, Volume I is now ready to roll, and once it was all said and done it turned out even better than expected.

Take a Look Inside Volume I…

By now you’re probably dying to find out what exactly you’ll find in “The Dellinger Files volume I.” As I mentioned above, we combined some of Jan’s “Muscletown Memories” with training articles and alternated the two throughout the book. Take a look at some of the topics covered in volume I:

  • Where it All Began… How Jan started working at York Barbell and Grimek’s unique interview” process… what it was like editing Muscular Development Magazine and sharing an office with John Grimek… how Jan met Dr. Ken Leistner… adventures through the strength world, NFL weight rooms, lifting championships… and much more!
  • How to buy an Olympic Barbell… Why “saving a buck” is generally not a good idea… How long you should expect your bar to last… Exercises you should never do with a good Olympic bar… Where the money goes in the price of a quality bar… What the markings on your bar mean… The main differences between an “Olympic Lifting” Barbell and a Powerlifting Barbell…
  • Tips for lifting contests…
  • The Bruno Course… The best training course Jan has ever seen in all his years in the strength business… and it’s probably not what you might think…
  • Sandbag Training Tips… Jan’s introduction to “sandbag training,” why he was apprehensive at first, and what changed his mind… Three different methods for training with sandbags… How sandbags compare to barbells and dumbbells… How to structure a sandbag workout… Sandbag conditioning work… “PHA” sandbag training… How to combine sandbags with barbell training
  • Sergio Takes a Nap… What happened at the 1983 Ms. America bodybuilding contest and how Sergio Oliva lived up to his nickname “The Myth”
  • Two of the Very Best Bodyweight Training Exercises… what they are and which bodybuilding, legends used them to build their champion physiques…
  • Sled Pulling Tutorial… Get ready for some pretty strange looks from the neighbors… putting your “pulling” routine together… sled pulling for strength and conditioning… Dr. Ken’s influence… how-to’s, progression tips and goal
  • Behind the scenes at York Barbell… Who are celebrities who have shown up (some announced, some unannounced) at York… and what happens when they do?
  • A Different Kind of Road Work… Ever wanted to learn the finer points of car pushing? Now you can find out for yourself…
  • Range Training… How to use this unusual method of progression to build strength and move past sticking points…
  • Bodyweight Training… How a life-long barbell man makes it work… Goals, training tips and workout ideas… Where bodyweight training “fits” into a routine…
  • Negative Training… For Chins, how Robert Francis trained to win the Chinup contest at the 1998 York Barbell picnic…progression methods… how much you really need
  • Ed Jubinville’s Muscle Control Act… You won’t believe what happened, luckily someone was there to see it live…
  • One-Arm Deadlift Training Tips… find out more about this little used but highly effective grip and forearm exercise
  • The Partial Trap Bar Deadlift… A good substitute for The Jefferson Lift? You be the judge
  • Sample Workouts and Training Tips… above and beyond what is discussed in each training chapter

You want York Barbell history? — It’s in there. You want sandbag training? — It’s in there. You want grip training advice? — It’s in there….

As you can see, basic, straightforward, and to the point… great training information combined with strength memories that you will not find anywhere else… All the ingredients for a classic strength book — and what will be the first of many. Whether powerlifter, bodybuilder, garage lifter, beginner, veteran, or strength history buff, this is a title that should be in your personal library…

20 Chapters, 8-1/2″ x 11″ Size, over 51,000 Words, Sample workouts, Recommended Reading List, Glossy Cover, Printed on heavy weight paper, No pictures. The Dellinger Files Volume I is in stock and ready for immediate shipment. Get your copy today!

Order now!The Dellinger Files Vol 1. by Jan Dellinger
_________ $29.99 plus s/h

The New Bodybuilding for Old-School Results by Ellington Darden

Posted on Wednesday, September 28th, 2016 by John Wood
The NEW Bodybuilding
for Old-School Results
Eliminate confusion, develop confidence and gain bigger and stronger muscles – faster than ever before!
Arthur Jones, feeding one of his baby elephants. Note the machine gun with a banana clip – this guy means business.

The man looked like the Devil himself and then threatened to kill me less than 20 minutes after we met…

He lunged at me but I was too quick and dodged his advance but then with a quick move he grabbed me by the scruff of the neck…

“Look kid, the smartest and toughest men in the world have mustaches … I have one and your dad doesn’t!”… but I broke free from his grasp … then like a cat I jumped up on the windowsill, sprang through the air and got him right in his bad shoulder with a flying drop-kick…

So went my introduction to Arthur Jones and probably the only fight that Arthur ever lost … I was six years old at the time.

Arthur Jones was the roughest, toughest, meanest and smartest Iron Game pioneer who ever walked the Earth and the man who revolutionized strength training forever. His ideas influenced millions of people to start training in the most effective manner possible. Now these same ideas will help YOU build TWICE the strength in HALF the time.

Fast Forward A Decade…

Here, read this,” said my Dad as he handed me a thick folder full of Xeroxed sheets of paper.

I was fifteen years old — just a freshman in high school — and starting to get into strength training in a serious way. I was looking for the best way to get as big and as strong as I possibly could for the next football season.

So I took the folder and, without looking too closely at it, noticed that it contained a series of training articles written by Arthur Jones; a name I vaguely recalled from the past.

This was a lot of material to go through and I originally intended to throw it in some forgotten corner of my room and get around to it when I had more time (probably never). The thing is, as I walked up to my room, I took a closer look at what was really inside and when I saw the first few pages, I stopped in my tracks… I couldn’t take another step.

I knew instantly that this was information that I had to read RIGHT NOW. I took a seat right there at the top of the stairs and began to read…

Understand, I had seen books on strength training — lots of them. I had seen plenty of training courses too, and a fair share of “muscle comics.” They were all pretty much the same … what I was reading right then was a whole different animal. Those articles were like nothing I had ever seen before. A few hours went by but it only felt like a few minutes as I made my way through the material. I read everything.

When I got done, I felt 10 feet tall, like I had found diamonds as big as basketballs in my own backyard. No more confusion – I now possessed the keys to super strength.

That day my life (and my training) changed forever.

Strength training had never been explained to me this way before. Many of the things about strength training that I had previously been confused about now made perfect sense. Arthur Jones’ ideas gave me a clear picture of exactly what I needed to do and exactly how I needed to do it in order to get stronger.

Within those pages, I learned the foundations (almost a step-by-step blueprint) for understanding the fundamental building-blocks of Strength development. All that was left was to do it, and now I had the Confidence to know I was on the right path.

Dr. Darden Strikes Again!
Dr. Ellington Darden

Many people had the same experience when they first read some of Arthur’s materials.

Over four decades ago, when Arthur Jones unleashed his training philosophy on an unsuspecting world, it soon spread like wildfire. It made a heck of a lot of sense to thousands upon thousands of trainees all over the country and the world, and in practice, worked better than anything else than they ever tried.

Among the many people who achieved tremendous results were Ellington Darden, a Champion Bodybuilder and Ph.D. who not only had many published training articles under his belt, but graced the cover of many strength magazines of the time.

Ellington Darden got his hands on all of Arthur Jones’ articles and liked what he read.  Darden eventually trained under Arthur Jones and ended up achieving the best results he had ever experienced — Darden was a previous collegiate Mr. America contest winner, so this was really saying something. Training with Arthur Jones had such a big impact that Ellington Darden has been writing about it ever since. Dr. Darden has the unique distinction of being there throughout the entire Nautilus phenomenon so he can definitely tell you the real deal.

Today, with nearly 50 books to his credit on a variety of subjects, now Dr. Darden takes it back to where it all began in this modern classic…

Enter: The New Bodybuilding for Old-School Results
by Ellington Darden, Ph.D.

Was Arthur Jones a Genius… Or a Madman?

There might be a pretty good case for him being both. Imagine stepping into a time machine to see and hear from the people who were actually there to learn the real story behind Nautilus, Arthur Jones and the whole ball of wax – Now you can!

Casey Viator (Pictured) was Arthur’s top student and, at 19 years old, the youngest Mr. America winner in history, you’ll be able to read an interview all about Casey’s life and his training starting on page 124.

At over 300 pages,”New Bodybuilding” is part history lesson, part training guide and one thing is for sure: there has never been anything like it before in the world of strength training. This book would be a valuable addition to your Strength library for just the Golden Age photos alone.: we’re talking hundreds of classic shots.

Here is just a sample of the things you will find in its pages:

10 Classic Interviews with the top individuals in the strength industry

Hear the real story from the men who lived it:

Kim Wood – Hall of Fame Strength Coach and Strength Legend

Ben Sorenson – Manager of Vic Tanny’s famous gym in Santa Monica (near Muscle Beach) from 1947-1949 and Arthur’s first training partner

Jim Flanagan – Arthur’s right hand man who reminisces about Milo Steinborn, the last of the oldtime strongmen; Jim describes what it was like to train in Steinborn’s Gym.

Casey Viator – The youngest Mr. America ever and Arthur’s top student. Read what Casey recalls about his most grueling exercise sessions with Arthur.

Roger Schwab – Owner of Mainline Nautilus, Philadelphia, PA, behind-the-scenes Strength Legend and REAL Trainer of Champions

Joe Mullen – Iron Game Veteran who teaches you the secrets of the one arm chin-up

Boyer Coe – Champion Bodybuilder: Mr. America 1969, Mr. Universe 1969,

Dan Riley – 25 year NFL Strength coach Veteran, holder of three Superbowl Rings (Including 3 Football Specific Training Routines)

Werner Kieser – Old School Intensity from Germany

Wes Brown – “Pumping Iron and Nautilus” – How Arnold Trained during his most famous film

Andy McCutcheon – HIT enthusiast from England, who outlines how he was able to break the British record for pushups (doing 107 in 60 seconds), and his training with Multiple Mr. Olympia Winner Dorian Yates.

  • Intensity vs. Form: Which is more important? – and the reasons you should know why
  • The Real meaning of “Old School” Training – Which probably isn’t what you think it is..
  • A look into the Past – Muscle Beach, the modern Muscle Mecca where Arthur began serious training at Vic Tanny’s Gym
  • How Kim Wood knew about Arthur Jones well over a decade before he met him in person and well before his Nautilus days
  • The real story behind the first appearance of “The Blue Monster” – Culver City, California 1970
  • The truth about Kim Wood’s unique “200 Reps” Routine
  • The most important goal for any football-strength related program and why most football training routines are worthless
  • What made Cincinnati Bengals Nose Tackle Tim Krumrie stand out above just about every football player who ever lived? – Check out his brief 4-set training routine
  • Boyer Coe’s “unvarnished” Championship Bicep and Tricep Routine, which only requires simple equipment that can be found in every gym
  • The 7 most important tips for getting the best results from any arm program Think you need to train for hours? – WRONG! wait until you find out just how long a proper arm development routine should take
  • The amazing influence of Confidence in your training program and how to use it to your best advantage
  • 6 Step-by-Step tips to the perfect pushup and 5 steps to performing proper negative-pushups
  • The single set vs. multiple set debate, now settled once and for all
  • The Best of the Bulletins – The collected wit and Wisdom of Arthur Jones
  • The 18 different signs of overtraining and 10 different ways to guard against them
  • Repetition Ranges: Low, Medium, High – Which is Best?
  • The value of negative-only training and how to do it correctly A simple test to help you know your optimum rep range
  • 9 “Beyond Failure” Techniques to stimulate maximum muscle growth
  • Just what was “The Happiness Machine” and Why just one workout on it would wreck your whole week
  • How to correctly perform Negative-only chin-ups and 2 different negative-chin-up routines
  • How Motor Learning Helps Strength Training: Stable Answers for Shaky Practices
  • The 3 types of motor “transfer” and what you have to know about each one
  • Metabolic Conditioning – What it is and why you need to know about it
  • How to perform Metabolic Conditioning workouts with Machines or with barbells
  • 7 Training “Rules” and why your workout won’t “work” without them

  • The precision workout chart and the best way to measure your progress
  • 3 reasons why split routines MAY or MAY NOT be right for you.
  • Find out what happened the time when Arthur Jones trained Legendary wrestler Dan Gable
A Unique Glimpse Into The Iron Game’s Past:
What was Old is New Again
The great Steve Reeves – some VERY interesting and little-known details of his training are revealed in chapter I
Milo Steinborn settled in Florida when his wrestling career ended and mentored a young Jim Flanagan, details are in chapter 11
Warren Lincoln Travis, the legendary strongman, still has few things to teach you about strength training a century later…

The truth is you can only look as far forward as you can see into the past. What if you could be a fly on the wall and listen in on how some of the strongest men of all time trained?

How about a look at their unique training equipment?

In The New Bodybuilding for Old-School Results you will learn about many interesting things from the Golden Age of Strength training – the men and the methods that paved the foundations for today…

Take a journey back to the Turn of the Century with Oldtime Strongman Warren Lincoln Travis, or strength star Henry “Milo” Steinborn (who owned and ran the first commercial gym in America.)

Go back to the sands of the original Muscle Beach in Santa Monica, California circa 1948 and learn how bodybuilding legend Steve Reeves used to train at Vic Tanny’s Gym. You’ll also learn about many more Iron Game greats: John Grimek, George Eiferman, Marvin Eder, Freddy Ortiz… Casey Viator, Sergio Oliva, Boyer Coe, Mike & Ray Mentzer… the list goes on and on!

How’s This for Old-School Strength?

Here I am doing a few wrist curls with an antique dumbbell that once belonged to the French Strongman, Apollon (Yes, that Apollon), from chapter 30, (which I helped write): Iron-Vise Grip Strength: A Fistful of Power. Find out more on page 272.

You Want Training Routines?

Most training courses provide plenty of “theory” but little that you can actually do. The New Bodybuilding for Old School Results doesn’t just provide a ton of workouts for you to try but gives you the very Best workouts – the exact workouts – that have been used successfully again and again for decades. Get the book, read it, and 10 minutes later you’ll be able use the same workout that the champs do:

Try these out for size:

The Classic Nautilus Machine Circuit from 1975

The Nautilus Negative-Only Routine

HIT (High Intensity Training) A-B Foundational Routine

HIT Thigh Emphasis Routine

HIT Mid-section Emphasis Routine

HIT Change of Pace Routine

HIT Overall Body Routine

HIT Back-Chest Emphasis Routine

The 5 “Core” Movements Routine

HIT Abbreviated Routine

HIT A-B-C Arm Specialization Routine

HIT A-B Basic Routine

The BIG Routine

The 3-Day Split

The 4 Day Contra-Lateral Split

2 different negative-chin-up routines

6 Cadence Variations

8 Ways to Specialize on Calves with the most productive calf cycle ever created

Rediscover the lost art of rib-cage development/Chest Expansion

How to stretch, breathe, and contract during the recommended exercises

The “Shoulders for Soldiers” Deltoid Routine

The “Fistful of Power” Iron-Vise Grip Routine

Not Just for Bodybuilders But
ALL Strength Athletes

One of the biggest reasons for failure among many trainees is that they never fully learned how to train in the first place. They have no clue as to why certain exercises should be done in certain ways — and the results, if there are any, are often mediocre at best.

The truth is that every person in the world is essentially the same in some very fundamental ways – and every person in this world gains strength through the same processes. The principles outlined in this book will help you understand these processes which will allow your to become super strong, no matter what you are training for and no matter what equipment you are using.

As you can see, The New Bodybuilding for Old-School Results by Ellington Darden Ph.D. is chocked full of valuable information. There is enough here to point anyone in the right direction for Super Strength – 300+ pages, over 40 training routines, hundreds of pictures, interviews with All-Time Iron Game Legends and more!!

Order now!The New Bodybuilding for Old-School Results by Ellington Darden:
___________$39.99 plus s/h

The Hammer Strength Wrist Curl

Posted on Wednesday, December 1st, 2010 by John Wood
There’s no question that the traditional barbell wrist curl has been and can be a very effective method for building wrist strength — but that doesn’t mean it can’t be improved upon. This nifty piece of training equipment from Hammer Strength offers a few interesting possibilities: 1. a standardized range of motion and 2. the ability to do something that no barbell can match: negative accentuated training capability i.e. lift with two hands then lower with one… This is a technique very much worth experimenting with, if you happen to be lucky enough to have access to one of these devices (there aren’t many around.)