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Ken Urakawa
11-06-2006, 12:33 PM
Had a few questions about Mark Twight's breathing ladders, wanted to get some input.

Anyone have any particular favorite exercises? I've seen everything from Thrusters and deadlifts to kb swings/snatches. Anyone tried it with the Olympic lifts?

Seems like 1-10 in waves or 1-10-1 pyramid style are popular rep schemes. Anyone experimented with anything else? I would imagine that it would depend on the lift to some degree, but one would assume that higher rep ladders would allow for longer sessions than say 1-5-1 ladders.


As a complete aside, this stuff reminds me of some of the things I've heard/read about Emil Zatopek (Father of Interval Training; 5,000 & 10,000 world/Olympic records, decided to run his first ever marathon at the last minute in the 1952 games--and won). Apparently he used to run multiple 200 m sprints while holding his breath, so his body could become more effecient in oxygen debt.

Anyway, just soliciting some opinions, wanted to hear some other folk's experiences. Thanks-


"When a person trains once, nothing happens. When a person forces himself to do a thing a hundred or a thousand times, then he certainly has developed in more ways than physical. Is it raining? That doesn't matter. Am I tired? That doesn't matter, ethier. Then will power wil be no problem." -Emil Zatopak

Robb Wolf
11-06-2006, 01:52 PM
Ken-
I've not tinkered with them but they look rough. I think there are some good archives that show some workout formats. If you give them a go please do share your experience.

Ken Urakawa
11-06-2006, 03:44 PM
Will do. We've got a date with Mutant Murph Saturday, so it might be next week before I get to it.

James Evans
11-08-2006, 02:37 AM
Ken, I think this may be of some assistance if you have not already spotted it:

http://www.gymjones.com/knowledge.php?id=27

It's been posted on the website recently.

I've only done them with swings and to build volume rather than induce 'panic breathing' etc.

Allen Yeh
11-08-2006, 04:44 AM
I've only ever done them with KB swings and snatches. I felt that the snatches were a lot harder than the swings even though for swings I usually do waves of 1-10 and with snatches I usually do waves of 1 snatch right, 1 snatch left, 1 breathe....up to 5. Never really thought to try it with anything else like the Olympic lifts.

Thanks for the link James.

Ken Urakawa
11-09-2006, 01:58 PM
So I figured I'd stick with something pretty straight forward for the first attempt today, did 2 hand kb swings with the 24 kg bell. Experimented a little bit with the reps:
1-10, 1-10, 1-10-1-10, 1-4 Finished up around 29:00 (the phone rang, but I was pretty close to packing it in anyway).

I found the 1-10-1 ladders much more challenging than the 1-10, 1-10 version, personally. With the higher reps, I got more breathing time during the activity, and then dropping back down to the low reps gave me some recovery from the exercise. With the up-and-down ladder, that middle section from about 6-5 had a fairly high suck factor. Although, it could have just been that my FF was a little low today--have to ask Robb about testing for that.

Regardless, it was certainly interesting, and lived up to expectations. I might try it again tonight with a 1-5-1 scheme for kicks. With a light weight.

I think next time I make a serious attempt, I may pick a larger-scale movement (Hang Power Cleans, anyone?), and run it up-and-down style.

And thanks for the link, James--good info.

Scotty Hagnas
11-09-2006, 03:12 PM
I'm headed home to take a crack at this. I think I'll try burpees.....

Scotty Hagnas
CrossFit Portland

Pierre Auge
11-09-2006, 06:36 PM
I've done this and continue to do so, 1-5 Pull-Up + 1-5 KBS, I do seven rounds of this totaling 105 reps of each. I alternate from one to the other, if you do it slow and steady its a good time. If you do it for time it produces a nice metabolic wallop.

Figured I'd share I didn't read the Mark Twight thing because I'm busy but I will. I figured I'd jump in anyways just to be a pain.

Robb Wolf
11-10-2006, 12:01 PM
Scotty-
that sounds REALLY nasty.

Pierre-
Give me a call when you get a chance.

Jeremy Jones
11-10-2006, 03:58 PM
I put my fighters through some medicine ball clean and presses (20#s).

I made them do 1 rep, breathe once, 2 reps, breathe once, 3 reps, breathe once, start over.


Kind of the opposite of adding breaths as you go, but I was trying to induce some hypoxia (like when you have a 200lb gorilla dancing on your chest).


It kicked our asses.

Scotty Hagnas
11-10-2006, 04:54 PM
Well, I did the burpees last night, it wasn't too bad... but not fun either. I did 1-10-1. I took the breaths as slow as I could, as I wasn't sure how rough it would get. I could have gone a little faster, but the breaks were nice. They allowed me to keep my FF(friskiness factor) up all the way thru - none of the reps ever got slow with fatigue. It was the best I've ever felt after 100 burpees.

I'm going to have a few of my advanced crew try these tonight.

Scotty Hagnas
CrossFit Portland

Robb Wolf
11-11-2006, 07:01 AM
Right on Scotty. I think you’ve hit on the key to progress. Proper integration of FF and AKP:


Δ(FF)1/3 x (1/AKP)=42

Scott Kustes
11-12-2006, 07:39 AM
Mr. Wolf has discovered the meaning of life! All Hail Master Wolf!

Robb Wolf
11-12-2006, 08:27 AM
Mr. Wolf has discovered the meaning of life! All Hail Master Wolf!

Ok, Im in. Let's get a Tax ID status as a church and make this thing into a cult ASAP. All we ask is 10% of your earnings go to Church of the Immaculate Performance Menu.

Steve Shafley
11-12-2006, 12:04 PM
Incidentally, Mark Twight has written up a piece on breathing ladders on the GJ site where the rest of the writings are.

Allen Yeh
11-13-2006, 04:07 AM
Mr. Wolf has discovered the meaning of life! All Hail Master Wolf!

I thought the "answer to life the universe and everything" was 42??!!?

Scott Kustes
11-13-2006, 07:36 AM
I thought the "answer to life the universe and everything" was 42??!!?
Did you read his formula?

Δ(FF)1/3 x (1/AKP)=42
which could be reduced to: Δ(FF)/(3 x AKP)=42, but who am I to argue with Robb? :cool:

Jeremy Jones
11-13-2006, 10:53 AM
As I am about to finish reading "Stranger in a Strange Land" I am totally ready to start a church.


All Hail Heinlein!

Robb Wolf
11-13-2006, 01:28 PM
Did you read his formula?


which could be reduced to: Δ(FF)/(3 x AKP)=42, but who am I to argue with Robb? :cool:

That was supposed to read "Delta FF to the one third power...but something got lost in translation...

Scott Kustes
11-13-2006, 02:50 PM
That was supposed to read "Delta FF to the one third power...but something got lost in translation...
Damn computers! Always screwing everything up! :p

Danny John
11-25-2006, 08:47 AM
I have been with Mark when he teaches this and although I like it, I think it is for athletes/persons who need to train "panic." It might be handy as a tool for some of you, but the people he is teaching to do this...they need to "train" to overcome some serious stuff. When you meet the people Mark trains...you begin to wonder why anyone...even someone with godlike status...would cross him...

Robb Wolf
11-25-2006, 09:33 AM
I have been with Mark when he teaches this and although I like it, I think it is for athletes/persons who need to train "panic." It might be handy as a tool for some of you, but the people he is teaching to do this...they need to "train" to overcome some serious stuff. When you meet the people Mark trains...you begin to wonder why anyone...even someone with godlike status...would cross him...


Dan, Dan, Dan...you are a theologian! You know the story of God and Lucifer...