CSCS Study Guide Chapter 16: Exercise Technique for Alternative Modes and Nontraditional Implement Training

What is nontraditional implement training? strongman training? This study chapter of the Essentials of Strength training and conditioning answers this and other personal training questions for the CSCS exam.

Chapter 16 of the Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning covers nontraditional methods ad implements that may be used to develop athletes. This may include resistance band and chain loaded exercises.

Other chapters can be found here:

Exercise Technique for Alternative Modes and Nontraditional Implement Training

  • Alternative modes and and nontraditional implements have become popular in training. In order for you to use these in a program you must consider the guidelines outlined in this chapter to ensure safety.

General Guidelines

  • Alternative Modes-nontraditional ways of training.
  • Nontraditional Implement-different from normal exercise equipment.
  • Sticking Point-a difficult point in a movement between the eccentric and concentric phase.
  • Axial Skeleton-the head and trunk.
  • Valsalva Maneuver-somewhat forcefully attempting to exhale against a closed airway. Can be helpful for maintaining proper spinal alignment and support in select exercises and circumstances.

Bodyweight Training Methods

  • Bodyweight Training-using the body weight of the individual to provide resistance. Benefit is low cost, issue is it's limited to an individual's weight.
  • Muscle Activation-muscular contraction.

Core Stability and Balance Training Methods

  • Core-all the muscles of your torso. Including your glutes.
  • Ground-Based Free Weight Exercises-traditional exercises on stable surfaces.
  • Anatomical Core-the anatomical definition of what the "core" is. The axial skeleton and all of the soft tissues with proximal attachments that originate on the axial skeleton. Including the pelvic and shoulder girdles.
  • Isolation Exercises-exercises designed to isolate certain muscles.
  • Ground-based free weight exercises seem to improve core strength used in sport performance better than isolation exercises for the core.
  • Machine-Based Training-training done primarily with specialized equipment.
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL)-a ligament in the middle of the knee that prevents the shin bone from sliding out in front of the thigh.

Variable-Resistance Training Methods

  • Constant External-a method of applying load where the load is kept the same throughout the range of motion. The most common. Lifting a free weight is an example of this.
  • Accommodating-a method of applying load where the resistance is adjusted to maintain a constant speed. Has been suggested that these devices have poor external validity.
  • Variable Resistance-a method of applying load where the resistance is adjusted to be easier in the difficult parts of the lift. to maximize the total force. Using things like bands and chains.
  • Chains-a series of connected links, used in training to apply variable resistance.
  • Resistance Bands-stronger rubber bands used to apply variable resistance.

Nontraditional Implement Training Methods

  • Strongman Training-training using nontraditional implements like tires, logs, kettlebells, stones, weighted sleds, as well as exercises like farmer's walks 
  • Logs-nontraditional weighted implements that are shaped like logs and loaded with either water or traditional plates. Little research has been done to explore the effectiveness of this.
  • Farmer's Walk-An exercise where the athlete holds a load in each hand while walking forward.
  • Kettlebell-a weighted ball with a handle. Two major types, sport and cast iron.

Unilateral training

  • Bilateral Asymmetries-when features on both sides of the body are different. Ex one leg being way stronger than the other.
  • Bilateral Deficit-a difference in the amount of force that can be produced by both legs at the same time vs. each leg individually. When the sum of both legs is greater than the total produced by both.
  • Bilateral Facilitation-an increase in the amount of force that can be produced by both legs.