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View Full Version : 15 OHS with bodyweight---carry over...


Rick Deckart
03-14-2007, 11:01 AM
Sorry for spamming the forum with my recent success story. But I thought some of you might be interested in the carry over I noticed. Well I have achieved one of my short term goals as already stated in two other threads:

A 15 rep OHS set with bodyweight on the bar:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-MnX2ghWhY

It was not really difficult I must say. So is there a transfer of the OHS training to the deadlift, squat etc.?

Today I tried to figure out a sorta max for my deadlift. You can see the workout log entry here:

http://www.performancemenu.com/forum/showthread.php?p=6401#post6401

I should have done this tomorrow, as this is a) a new PR and b) only 5.5kg shy of a double bodyweight deadlift. But here comes the catch---I haven't touched a weight heavier than 106kg in the last months and did not do a single deadlift since last Christmas.

I may test back and front squat in a couple of days, we will see.

I was starting to wonder if the 15 OHS with BW is really elite, as some lists of athletic feats imply. Frankly I don't think so. If somebody like me (in other words Joe Average but with some serious handicaps) can achieve this in 3--4 months, this feat cannot be elite, no way. Elite for me would mean that you need years of dedicated training to achieve the goal, not a couple of months and a bit of volume. And just to clarify Dan John never claimed this feat to be elite...

Steve Liberati
03-14-2007, 03:31 PM
That is pretty darn impressive Peter...looks very natural.

Yael Grauer
03-14-2007, 03:45 PM
Congratulations!!

I've always been curious about whether the whole 95# OHS thing is elite, myself. I mean, not to downplay the strength/skill/effort involved (and coming from someone who can only OHS half her bodyweight), but it almost seems like a party trick. Good to know there is transfer though!

Rick Deckart
03-15-2007, 11:10 AM
Thanks. It took me 1535 overhead squats/76580 kg (only the work sets) during last December and 982 overhead squats/52412 kg plus ~1000 KB swings/~20000kg during the last three weeks to get there.

I will repeat this cycle end of the year and intend to target for a 15 reps OHS with 1.25BW (100kg) on the bar. I think that's perfectly doable and if that is gonna happen the target will be 120kg x 15 reps by the end of 2008...

But the next three weeks will be the BIG 21....

Rick Deckart
03-18-2007, 05:52 AM
Not sure if it is a party trick, but it is definitely not elite in the sense a double bodyweight OHS squat is or a 900---1000lbs deadlift. I think I agree with Dan John, it has more to do with toughness. I have no doubts that there are many true elite lifters who could do it with minimal training. The reason the don't did it so far is IMO that training for it would probably compromise their primary goals.

I posted this elsewhere but it is illuminating in this context. Some years ago there was a TV show in the german television where an 79year old fitness trainer tried to outsquat the then world champion Caruso. Who squats 50kg more often in 4min? Before they started this old guy mentioned to Caruso that what he would try now "...is poison to you, you always train low reps..." or something comparable.

Well this old guy did REALLY pretty good. He got around 100 reps if memory serves (at age 79!), but he had no chance against Caruso who won easily. Well Caruso looked much more drained afterwards and high rep is usually not what weightlifters do, but he could do it without a problem.

Pierre Auge
03-18-2007, 07:38 AM
Peter, I think you're missing the context of the argument!

15 BW overhead squats is Elite when you can do it without training for it, figure it out. Take the tests without training for the tests and see how you do! Hows your Fran, Grace, Isabel, Muscle-Ups, Linda, Kelly, JT, Annie, Helen, Barbara, Diane, Chelsea, Elizabeth right now?

You're missing the forest for the trees! We're not Professional Overhead Squatters. We're lifers, unknown stress and happenstance is our sport, train for that and you may one day be able to handle it... I'm less than impressed not with your physical feets but with your understanding of the issues at hand!

Yes OHS have transfer, every skill has transfer, so learn every skill you can, don't just stick to a few because thats what you're good at in the hopes that it will make you better at a bunch of others, thats where I disagree with some of the folks around here.

-Ross Hunt
03-18-2007, 09:51 AM
Maybe not elite, but that's pretty tough... and you make it look easy.

If I could do that, I sure wouldn't have to be as accurate as I have to right now when I snatch. Did you have good upper body strength before you went into this? You seem to have a really high overhead squat:deadlift ratio...

BTW, if you want to make it even harder, try going ass to grass; you're hitting parallel nicely, and 15 reps with bodyweight to that depth is plenty impressive, but it's the six inches above rock bottom that are the real bitch in the snatch-grip overhead squat.

Rick Deckart
03-18-2007, 10:37 AM
Hi Ross,

believe it or not, but unfortunately I cannot go much deeper. Lack of squatting-flexibility in ankles, knees and hips (due to an trashed back from an accident when I was sixteen, which took its toll), but I am working on it. The back among other things is also the reason my deadlift is very modest.

My overhead strenght before starting training for this 'elite' feat was soso, could do a triple OHS with bodyweight which was DIFFICULT, meaning a max. I pressed the 40kg bell on several occasions for a single.

I check you log on P&B on occassion and based on your stats I would say that If you wanted to train for it you would certainly not need 3 months, as I did, to get it done. Your a stronger, much younger and much better lifter than I am.

Pierre, no offense but your a funny guy! Nobody does 15 OHS without some sort of OHS training, be it for max singles or strenght endurance or whatever. If your definition of elite (If I understood you correctly (maybe I am really confused) you have to be able to do it without training for it) were true, there were no elite lifters, runners etc around. Because all of the true elite feats require years of dedicated training and probably very special genetics, sort of one of a kind...

If this still isn't clear, I am an intermediate level (at best) lifter who may or may not switch to the advanced level this (or next) year---more likely not. I am relatively old (43) and started lifting around 3 and a half year ago. I have to do it on my own, unfortunately I have no coach.

15 OHS is nowhere near elite IMO, and neither makes training the OHS for three month make me a professional overhead squatter, nor do I intend to train the OHS exclusively for the rest of my life, hoping that it will do good for me. But I keep using what works for as long at it works which is in my opinion something reasonable to do.

Pierre Auge
03-18-2007, 12:39 PM
Peter,
you're completely missing the point. The only people who consider 15 BW OHS a worthwhile feet are CrossFitters. Why because to an olympic lifter it is not! Being both I may have a different perspective. The point is that it becomes a significant feet when you can accomplish the task without training specifically to achieve the task. This is where mixed mode varied training comes in to play. The reason CrossFit has its benchmarks is to tell them how their mixed mode training is developing.

If I did Fran 3 times per week for a few months I guarantee you I would have a sub 3:00 Fran. The point is not to do Fran to improve Fran. The point is to do Diane, Elizabeth, OHS, Grace, Isabel, Kelly, Nicole, Annie, Angie, and everyother possible workout and then do Fran to see how you match up to yourself previously.

You are taking your judgement of Elite out of context. You have to consider who and why said persons are suggesting elitism, which honestly I've never heard anyone call this feet elite but I like arguing none the less. Yes you're right that for someone who trains in a specific endeavor an Elite feet pushes the edges of genetic ability. But what about someone who trains simply to complete random tasks? Than Elite takes on a different meaning and that meaning is what I'm suggesting that you are not understanding.

Since you've been doing OHS check your Diane time... Thats the best test you can do for yourself! You're forgetting that life never throws Overhead Squats at you when you've been training them, life throws you deadlifts and right now your deadlifts need work. And in my humble opinion so do your overhead squats those wouldn't fly here.

Sorry thats just the way I see it.

Rick Deckart
03-18-2007, 12:58 PM
Pierre,

for example this list of athletic feats:

http://www.crossfitnorth.com/articles/Athletic_Skill_Levels.pdf

look under elite athlete and OHS.

I am not into Crossfit, sorry. And I do not agree with your definition of elite either but lets agree to not agree.

The reason I posted this thread is that I thought some of those interested might be informed if and to what extent there is a transfer of the OHS to other skills. Not to imply that everybody should start OHS.

And frankly I don't think that my OHS or my deadlift needs much more work.

But I have a question to you, how many Crossfitters are there which haven't trained the OHS and can do the 15OHS and how many have trained for it and can do it, as you imply that Crossfitters are the only one interested in the feat? No agenda on my part, just curiosity.

Right now I am the only one I know who has done the 15OHS and I would like to know of at least another person. I am especially interested how he/she trained and if he/she experienced a similar transfer of strenght endurance on max strenght as I did. The increase in deadlift I experienced may be due to my low numbers in the deadlift but there is little research known to me which deals with the question of such a transfer...

Andew Cattermole
03-18-2007, 02:42 PM
I've done 20 reps(consecutive) of my BW OHS at 67.5kg. I was 67kg at the time I am now 71kg.
Haven't tried it again, my focus is elsewhere but at the approx same time we (friends) often did 100 consecutive (no put downs) KB swings with the 32kg for time. As well as many 5min 24kg KB Snatch tests.

Re: Transfer
Not really sure as I didn't approach it in such an analytical way as yourself but I am still seeing steady gains in my Squats however my Dead Lift atm has stopped at 160kg(raw).

For the record I agree with Pierre.

But in the end work towards something or don't work towards something just make sure your doing something at sometime.

If you believe its elite, good for you it’s just a word, if you don't and elite is important to you then replace it with something that is.

You could always just go and compete in a well-organized sport at an elite level.

Rick Deckart
03-18-2007, 02:53 PM
Post hoc congrats, Andrew! Did you do some sort of OHS training back then, or did you just try it and could do it?

Pierre Auge
03-18-2007, 03:00 PM
Peter,
here I am in agreement with you and I can see that we can be content in disagreeing. The only other person I can verify as having done this is myself. I don't do much for high-rep overhead squats other than what comes up in the WOD's which I don't do the WOD's from the main page. At least not in order. I use them when it fits the schedule used here at the gym. So I don't do much. I do heavy OHS when I train the Olifts or when I'm doing Snatch Balances or Snatches.

I have seen transfer into other avenues of lifting but I would say more directly into my snatch than my deadlift but that should be obvious! I don't really do any considerable deadlifting these days, maybe once a month but I can deadlift double bodyweight most any day of the week unless I am extremely fatigued.

My point is simply that Elitism has to be taken into context, I also don't think that 15 BW OHS is Elite by any means but it is certainly worth mentioning. Though I would suggest only in an ass to grass manner. Your flexibility issues give you one of two things in my opinion: an excuse to do it poorly or a good excuse to do it within your limits. Since I don't personally know you and can't judge in person my intent isn't to insult either I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say you have a legit reason for doing it within your limits.

I'm no super athlete myself, frankly I'm poor at a great deal of things: for instance my jerk is crap! but I'm working on it.

Anyhow I apologize for degrading this conversation into a pissing match which was not my intention and I know it wasn't yours. What I'll say is this, as for transfer I truly believe that overhead squats translate well into just about anything that involves transfering force from the ground through your legs into an external object. That has been my experience.

Rick Deckart
03-18-2007, 03:17 PM
Thanks Pierre!

Russell Greene
03-18-2007, 06:00 PM
The whole point of the Crossfit north standards is not that any one of those feats is elite, but that someone who can do all of the elite standards is elite. So to be considered elite, you would have to do the 15 OHS in addition to rowing 6k in 20 minutes, deadlifting 2.5 bwt, doing 40 deadhang pullups, 15 muscleups, running a 5 minute mile, and much more. It is only elite in the context of all of the other feats. Peter, you seem to have thought that the feat is considered elite in and of itself. It's not.

Andew Cattermole
03-18-2007, 06:08 PM
Not in terms of specific OHS training I was on CrossFit WODs and extra KB work for TSC prep.That did include a lot of one arm OHS.
In truth at my light BW and endurance background, I didn't feel such volume based things are that impressive. Ias yet have not achieved a double BW OHS and this would be of more value to me.

Re: The Why
We were just into challenages so volume seemed logical,eg 100 swings,50 Long Cycle Double KB C&J,100 snatches
Although I do feel that most challenages as such are important to go through now and again I do believe they have a heavy mental component.
For Example when doing the OHS I would pause for 3 breathes in top position before each rep after the 10 mark.I just had to grit it out so to speak.

I feel the same way bout the Snatch test,you will lose some skin so tough it out.To train for it would I would not embark on constant 10 min or 5min sessions of snatches.

-Ross Hunt
03-18-2007, 06:22 PM
Hi Ross,

believe it or not, but unfortunately I cannot go much deeper. Lack of squatting-flexibility in ankles, knees and hips (due to an trashed back from an accident when I was sixteen, which took its toll), but I am working on it. The back among other things is also the reason my deadlift is very modest.

My overhead strenght before starting training for this 'elite' feat was soso, could do a triple OHS with bodyweight which was DIFFICULT, meaning a max. I pressed the 40kg bell on several occasions for a single.

I check you log on P&B on occassion and based on your stats I would say that If you wanted to train for it you would certainly not need 3 months, as I did, to get it done. Your a stronger, much younger and much better lifter than I am.

Pierre, no offense but your a funny guy! Nobody does 15 OHS without some sort of OHS training, be it for max singles or strenght endurance or whatever. If your definition of elite (If I understood you correctly (maybe I am really confused) you have to be able to do it without training for it) were true, there were no elite lifters, runners etc around. Because all of the true elite feats require years of dedicated training and probably very special genetics, sort of one of a kind...

If this still isn't clear, I am an intermediate level (at best) lifter who may or may not switch to the advanced level this (or next) year---more likely not. I am relatively old (43) and started lifting around 3 and a half year ago. I have to do it on my own, unfortunately I have no coach.

15 OHS is nowhere near elite IMO, and neither makes training the OHS for three month make me a professional overhead squatter, nor do I intend to train the OHS exclusively for the rest of my life, hoping that it will do good for me. But I keep using what works for as long at it works which is in my opinion something reasonable to do.

Thanks for the kind words.

The back explains the depth and deadlift; good luck working around that.

Going from 3-15 reps that quickly is impressive. Right now I probably OHSQ bodyweight for about a triple myself right now...


I need a pull a heavy DL for the hell of it sometime soon. It's been a while, and I bet it's gone up quite a bit. Carryover from oly lifts to dead is good--at least when you're tall and skinny. ;)

Pierre Auge
03-18-2007, 06:35 PM
Peter either way its a pretty cool thing you did! I'm sorry if I've offended you in any way, I sometimes do that and its not my intention!

Rick Deckart
03-20-2007, 08:11 AM
Thanks Pierre and no need to apologize (my OHS form is horrible)

Rick Deckart
03-24-2007, 12:56 AM
I will close this thread with one last post, so to whom it may concern...

Over the course of the last days I tested several non-skill lifts which I have not done for months. Below you find my sorta max before and after finishing this modified John Bott squat rehabilitation program focusing on OHS:

Magnitude of transfer:

Lift: old new increase
Deadlift: 140.0kg 152.5kg 8.9%
Partial Deadlift (600mm): 226.0kg 240.0kg 6.2%
Zerchersquat: 110.0kg 120.0kg 9.1%
Situps: 64kg 72kg 12.5%

Well, when I started this experiment I did expect to loose quite a bit of strength but to my surprise moderate weights/high volume did work very well for me. I make no claims that this will work for everybody and my explanation is that I am probably so weak that strenght endurance training does increase my max strength while an elite lifter might experience the exact opposite. Closing I would say that in terms of rate of return this was the most productive routine I ever tried. Lifting well below 62.5kg most of the time and increasing my partial deadlift ~6% is something which is still beyond me but I will take that incease happily.