The bridge is the most important strength-building exercise in the world?

 

This is day 5 of our Convict conditioning series where we will continue to progress through the 6 core movements of Convict Conditioning.

Here is a quick summary of the 6 “Core Movements”

  1. Pushups
  2. Squats
  3. Pull Ups
  4. Leg Raises
  5. Bridges
  6. Handstand Pushups

Today we are going to focus on the fifth of “The Big Six Movements”:

Convict Conditioning Back MusclesMovement Five: Bridges

This is meant to be a supplement to Convict Conditioning as it is imperative to understand the correct implementation of each movement and the history behind them.

adobe-pdf_thumb.jpgAs a bonus, you can download the portable Convict Conditioning Wall Chart Bundle (zip file).

Why You Should do Bridges – A Note From The Book: by Coach Paul Wade

The following are excerpts from the book.

Combat Ready Your Spine

“If I had to name the most important strength-building exercise in the world, it would bet the bridge. Nothing else even comes close.”

“In essence, bridging will do away with back pain, make you healthier; stronger, quicker, more agile, and increase your stamina. You should be bridging.!”

“Bridging exercises are not widely practiced in the West. Perhaps this really is because our culture values appearance over ability, because in other parts of the world the bridge is highly esteemed as one of the greatest exercise techniques known-in the East, it is regarded as the “king” of exercises.”

“The bridging series will grant you an incredible combination of strength paired with flexibility. If this was all the bridge offered you, it would be well worthwhile including it in your routine. But completing the bridge series will give you more-more than practically any other exercise on earth. Much, much more. It fixes old back injuries and prevents new ones, like slipped discs; it tones the stomach, deltoids, legs and arms; it expands the chest and loosens the shoulders; it renders the entire body agile and coordinated; it improves balance and promotes healthy digestion.”

The Spine and Athletic Qualities

If you are one of these guys who has a barbell set at home for fitness and strength, you would do well to sell it and buy a cushioned mat to train your spine on instead.

I realize that this suggestion seems so far from the current bodybuilding-style culture of strength and fitness that it seems almost funny. But I’m not joking.

The spine is the equivalent of the universal joint on a motor car. Every piece of pressure generated by movement goes through it-from little motions of the head and neck, to very powerful forces such as those generated in a heavy football tackle.

If your spine is weak, you can suffer all kinds of trauma from these actions-anything from an excruciating “slipped disc” to a compression fracture. You might even break your back.

The more athletic movements you make, the more risk to your spine. The stronger your spinal muscles are, the more punishment your spine can take and bounce back smiling.

Apart from preventing sports injuries, the spinal muscles also play a fundamentally positive role in strength and athleticism.

  • The spinal muscles are incredibly strong, and are involved in practically every major motion, from throwing and twisting to bending over and lifting.
  • Without good, robust spinal muscles, strength cannot exist. It’s impossible to use the limbs-whether curling, squatting, pressing or pulling-without using the spinal muscles.
  • These muscles are used more than any other voluntary muscles.

The stronger your spinal muscles, the better you will be at practically any athletic motion you can name.

Now, onto the ten steps.

Feel free to read about these movements, but remember-you are advised not to actually attempt these exercises until you can do Step 6 of both the squatting and leg raises.

Step 6 Leg Raise and Step 6 Squatting Series (must complete prior to starting bridge series)

6. Hanging Knee Raises

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 5
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 10
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 15
Hanking Knee Raises

6. Close Squats

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 5
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 10
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 20
6 Close Squats thumb Tim Ferriss Prison Day 2: Convict Conditioning Squats Cheat Sheet

BRIDGES

1. Short Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 10
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 25
  3. Progression Standard: 3 sets of 50
step 1 bridge convict conditioning

2. Straight Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 10
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 20
  3. Progression Standard: 3 sets of 40
step 2 sraight bridge convict conditioning

3. Angled Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 8
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 15
  3. Progression Standard: 3 sets of 30
step 3 angled bridge convict conditioning

4. Head Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 8
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 15
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 25
step 4 head bridge convict conditioning

5. Half Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 8
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 15
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 20
step 5 half bridge convict conditioning

6. Full Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 6
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 10
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 15
step 6 full bridge convict conditioning

7. Wall Walking Bridge (Down)

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 3
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 6
  3. Progression Standard: 2 sets of 10
step 7 wall walking bridge down convict conditioning

8. Wall Walking Bridges (UP)

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 2
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 4
  3. Master: 2 sets of 8
step 8 wall walking bridge up convict conditioning

9. Closing Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 1
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 3
  3. Master: 2 sets of 6
 step 9 wall closing bridge convict conditioning

10. Stand-To-Stand Bridges

  1. Beginner Standard: 1 set of 1
  2. Intermediate Standard: 2 sets of 3
  3. Master: 2 sets of 10-30

Master Step Convict Conditioning

 Stand-To-Stand Bridges

 

Download the Convict Conditioning Wall Chart Bundle (zip file)

Previous Convict Conditioning Cheat Sheets can be found here:

  1. Pushups
  2. Squats
  3. Pull Ups
  4. Leg Raises

Series Progression Chart Convict Conditioning – Bridge Series

Convict Conditioning Bridge Series Progression Chart Convict Conditioning Bridge Series Progression Chart

Training Programs: (for the Busy “Convict”)

The New Blood (Step 1) Good Behavior (Step 2)
The New Blood Training Schedule Good Behavior Training Schedule
  • Practice this program, or a similar routine, during your early work on the ten steps.
  • Once you get past Step 6 on all four of the exercises mentioned, it’s time to move to the next program.
• Good Behavior can be worked into almost anybody’s busy schedule. • This program can (and should) be used by any athlete to achieve solid strength gains-no matter how advanced they are.
The Veterano (step 3) Solitary Confinement (step 4)
The Veterano Trainig Schedule Solitary confinement convict conditioning
  • This workout is good for those with limited time on their hands. Sessions can often be completed in under six or seven minutes per day!
  • Recovery is actually pretty fast during this program because the athlete never works the upper or lower body two days in a row. The exercises alternate in the most efficient manner possible.
  • For athletes looking to gain strength and work their way up through the ten steps, this routine can be very productive. Because only one exercise is performed on a given day, the athlete can really focus and give his all.
  • This program includes ancillary work for the grip, neck, and calves. If you like the idea of trying these extras, but can’t take the daily workload, add a day’s rest between training sessions, or whenever you feel the need .
  • This program is mean. Unless you are in good shape and living clean-regular meals, plenty of sleep, etc.-be prepared to get bullied, big time.

 

Best of luck, and once again, if you are reading this in jail, please let me know in the comments section below so I can contact my inside connections and send you updates!  Smile