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"Doing more exercise with less intensity,"
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Why Is H.I.T. Not More Universally Accepted....
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Bubba Earl

Georgia, USA

I am a true H.I.T. believer. It just makes sense to me and I have achieved my best results through doing H.I.T, but there is always a little doubt. I say to myself "if H.I.T. is truly the best, then why is it not more universally accepted?" H.I.T.er's are truly in the minority and the majority is usually right about most things. The H.I.T detractors usually are not very convincing, but every once in a while they will come up with a logical reason to question H.I.T. like "H.I.T. taxes the nervous system to much and is that makes it counter productive." What if we are wrong? I do not think we are.
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kevindill

Maryland, USA

About the majority generally being right, remember for centuries most people thought the world was flat. As to why its not more popular, two basic thoughts. One, HIT is hard work, self explanitory. Two, HIT is not an appropriate way to train for competitive powerlifitng/StrongMan or Olympic weight lifting. In the strength training world Body Builders are a Minority. Most poeple who train with weights are athletes of one type or another, and most strenght coaches come from a background of competitive weight lifting. So they teach what they know. Guys like Dan Riley, Kim Wood, and Mark Asanovich are making inroads, but they are still a minority.
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HeavyHitter32

Mike Mentzer has written and spoken quite a bit about why HIT is not universally excepted. I think he hit it on the head.

It comes down to not thinking critically -- which few people really do. Most people just walk into the gym and do whatever, giving little thought to anything. And, considering genetics play such a big factor in bodybuilding, one with good genetics can use a bad approach and still get great results.
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NeuroMass

Guys,

The I think the main reason why HIT is not so accepted by the mainstream weight training community is because it has not been EXTENSITY PROMOTED as well as well as it should be. I mean the bottom line here is PUBLIC OPINION and pulic opinion is usually dictated by the MEDIA (TV, Magazines, books, etc). We HITers haven't done a good with this. I don't think the RATIONALITY or lack of it of a training method makes a big difference at all when it comes to public acceptance because few people are willing to invest thier time RATIONALIZING anything. Most would prefer to just follow what is the most commonly used methods.

So in fact it didn't really matter if JOE WEIDER was a HIGH VOLUME TRAINING advocate or a HIT advocate what made him and his ideas dominate the field was not the LEGITIMACY or RATIONILTY behind his method but his GENUIS in promoting (marketing strategy) and oftentimes HYPING-UP his products to APPEAL to the general public.

PEACE.
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noone

New York, USA

Do we really want everyone to do HIT? I like knowing it is productive and it works great. I see the same guys at the gym who train the same way for years and still look the same. At some point they should realize that more of the same will not magically start working. Volume has been beat into everyone's head for so long, the average person doesn't use their mind to think about their lack of progress. Thankfully those of us on this board and the HIT follower's woke up. I have a friend I see now and then. One time he asked me what I was doing. At that time I said "mentzer" and his reply was "that routine doesn't work." Really, then why/how did you notice some changes in me? I also think alot of volume people don't have much in their lives so 6 days a week means they are "dedicated."

Bret
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Drew Baye

Florida, USA

The best way of doing things is not always the most popular way. Popularity, like Neuro said, has a lot more to do with marketing and public image than objective value, but a lack of critical thinking skills is also a major factor.

When Arnold Schwarzenneger, arguably the most famous bodybuilder who ever has been or may ever be, Joe Weider, the largest publisher of bodybuilding publications in history, and the NSCA, one of the biggest strength and conditioning organizations in the world, all promote high volume, high frequency training and other such practices, more people are likely to follow it simply because they assume that these sources are authoritative. Even people with good critical thinking skills may not recognize the flaws if they are not presented with opposing views or arguments, or if they do not have the necessary background to recognize the inconsistencies in the high volume, high frequency approach.

HIT is actually becoming more popular, but you wouldn't know it by reading the bodybuilding magazines. It is becoming popular under a different name though, "convenience fitness". If you follow marketing and business trends in the fitness industry, you'll notice huge increase over the past couple of years in the market for personal training services, and in particular, personal training facilities that are offering 20 or 30 minute HIT workouts. The SuperSlow Zone, Slow Burn, Power of 10, 21 Minute Fitness, Ultimate Exercise, X Gym, etc. Of course, there are also facilities marketing brief workouts that apparently don't realize that to get results in a brief period you also need a high level of intensity, but the fact that many people are starting to realize that you don't have to spend your life in the gym to be fit or look better is starting to catch on.

The problem with this is that as it becomes more popular, there is bound to be a huge backlash. Watch over the next few years for a major increase in hostility towards and outright attacks on HIT by individuals and organizations with a vested interest in high volume training and other non-HIT protocols.

Drew Baye
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rtestes

Mississippi, USA

NeuroMass wrote:
Guys,

The I think the main reason why HIT is not so accepted by the mainstream weight training community is because it has not been EXTENSITY PROMOTED as well as well as it should be.


It would help if there were a sufficient supply of example bodies built with HIT. Weider and others has always found enough with "star" quality. I suggest Ellington start a magazine and everyone begin training sons and daughters the HIT way from the start. I have begun with my oldest grandson.
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

There is a lot of mysticism associated with various numbers and patterns. Doing magical combinations like "3 sets of 10 repetitions" is something that is ingrained into even people with minimal knowledge of exercise (yes, I fully realize the irony and relativity of the term "minimal knowledge"). What I mean is those gym newbies who have EVEN LESS knowledge than the long-term gym rats, who SHOULD know more, but generally are blind followers (and staunch promulgators) of the mystical number patterns. Clear as mud? Good.

The power of 3s is very strong --- strong enough to make folks who may normally be quite intelligent seem like extras from Dawn of the Dead (the slow ones from the original version, not the super-zombies from the remake). If you've ever read any Robert Anton Wilson, you can appreciate what I'm saying.

I don't have any bright ideas about how to break this mystic spell; I just wanted to throw it out there for you.

Tune-In and Tune-Out,
Scott
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karma50

Hi All;
I read a post on another HIT oriented board that claimed Dr. Matthew Rhea, an exercise phtsiologist, called advocating one-set training "quackery", at a recent NSCA meeting. According to the post, Dr. Rhea also claimed the connection between multi set training and improvement in strength is as solid as the connection between cigarettes and lung cancer. Apparently, this was the result of some meta-analysis done on many studies. Maybe some of you have read about this also.
Any thoughts?
Griff
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eintology

California, USA

Let's not forget HIT was the exercise protocol of choice for a lot of people during the late seventies, and really throughout the eighties. In a sense, it had a long run as the public is fickle. A good many look more to awestruck idol worship, than to not wasting their own time. I think part of the beauty of HIT lies in it's simplicity, and less is more approach, but a good many people can't buy into something that doesn't reperesent overabundance. I am not talking about the volume training hardcore bodybuilding world now, but I think a lot of people exercise more for mental bemusment than for physiological response. People are trying to fill the spaces of otherwise mundane lives, and flailing around in a gym for several hours a week answers this dilemma beautifully. And for the most part volume training of any kind doesn't represent acquired skill, at least not to the extent that learning the piano or a foreign language does. Recreational activities in the form of the physical answers this. In the exercise world the phrase they have coined as "mind - body - spirit" could be rephrased very easily, but I wouldn't want to get edited. I agree with you guys who are suggesting that one of the main reasons HIT is not more popular today has more to do with marketing, and swaying herd mentality than any known physiological absolutes. It's out of the world of the hard sciences and into the realm of sociology, and human behavior. Trends.

Here's an example as it relates to athletes, whom you'd think would know better: I remember years ago, and I'm sure many of you have read this study done at the West Point Military Academy, but just to set the canvas, the article pointed out what a great result all the participants got using Nautilus equipment and the Nautilus exercise protocol. One of the people observing the study first hand was Don Shula, who was then the head coach of the Miami Dolphins. After the study the Dolphins began training in the HIT protocol using Nautilus equipment. The next season the Dolphins go undefeated, with almost no injuries. They hand tremendous success. I thought OK, this should answer some questions and exercise won't remain such a free for all, which it really was prior to the advent of Nautilus. Did the West Point Study, and the Dolphins success that following season change the way football players trained? Yes. But not to the degree you would expect. A year or two later, I read that the Dallas Cowboys, and their coach Tom Landry, were using Hydra Fitness equipment. The same isokinetic junk now being used in the CURVES franchise for women. At the time they were marketing Hydra Fitness as being a "double positive" with no soreness involved. That lasted about two years then they were on to the "next new trick". Now I am reading that the trainer of the Denver Broncos has the players pull a specially designed sled he has built as a big part of thier training and the Chicago Bears are lifting some heavey chain in manners that duplicate football movements. A lot of athletes are now doing this "functional exercise." Athletes always look for the next buzz to get the advantage, even if it takes them in the wrong direction.

As a side note, but specific to this marketing idea, the main reason Pilates is currently so popular is because a woman in New Mexico with a strong marketing background got a hold of it, and sold the idea of Pilates to all the popular magazines. People bought into it as the next thing to fall in love with. Pilates had been around since the fourties, and with the exception of a few east coast dancers, and west coast actors, no one knew it from a bottle of vinegar. Get Madonna, and a host of others to say they swear by it and others will want it, regardless. Same system. Different package.

Erik
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NeuroMass

eintology wrote:
Let's not forget HIT was the exercise protocol of choice for a lot of people during the late seventies, and really throughout the eighties. In a sense, it had a long run as the public is fickle. A good many look more to awestruck idol worship, than to not wasting their own time. I think part of the beauty of HIT lies in it's simplicity, and less is more approach, but a good many people can't buy into something that doesn't reperesent overabundance. I am not talking about the volume training hardcore bodybuilding world now, but I think a lot of people exercise more for mental bemusment than for physiological response. People are trying to fill the spaces of otherwise mundane lives, and flailing around in a gym for several hours a week answers this dilemma beautifully. And for the most part volume training of any kind doesn't represent acquired skill, at least not to the extent that learning the piano or a foreign language does. Recreational activities in the form of the physical answers this. In the exercise world the phrase they have coined as "mind - body - spirit" could be rephrased very easily, but I wouldn't want to get edited. I agree with you guys who are suggesting that one of the main reasons HIT is not more popular today has more to do with marketing, and swaying herd mentality than any known physiological absolutes. It's out of the world of the hard sciences and into the realm of sociology, and human behavior. Trends.

Here's an example as it relates to athletes, whom you'd think would know better: I remember years ago, and I'm sure many of you have read this study done at the West Point Military Academy, but just to set the canvas, the article pointed out what a great result all the participants got using Nautilus equipment and the Nautilus exercise protocol. One of the people observing the study first hand was Don Shula, who was then the head coach of the Miami Dolphins. After the study the Dolphins began training in the HIT protocol using Nautilus equipment. The next season the Dolphins go undefeated, with almost no injuries. They hand tremendous success. I thought OK, this should answer some questions and exercise won't remain such a free for all, which it really was prior to the advent of Nautilus. Did the West Point Study, and the Dolphins success that following season change the way football players trained? Yes. But not to the degree you would expect. A year or two later, I read that the Dallas Cowboys, and their coach Tom Landry, were using Hydra Fitness equipment. The same isokinetic junk now being used in the CURVES franchise for women. At the time they were marketing Hydra Fitness as being a "double positive" with no soreness involved. That lasted about two years then they were on to the "next new trick". Now I am reading that the trainer of the Denver Broncos has the players pull a specially designed sled he has built as a big part of thier training and the Chicago Bears are lifting some heavey chain in manners that duplicate football movements. A lot of athletes are now doing this "functional exercise." Athletes always look for the next buzz to get the advantage, even if it takes them in the wrong direction.

As a side note, but specific to this marketing idea, the main reason Pilates is currently so popular is because a woman in New Mexico with a strong marketing background got a hold of it, and sold the idea of Pilates to all the popular magazines. People bought into it as the next thing to fall in love with. Pilates had been around since the fourties, and with the exception of a few east coast dancers, and west coast actors, no one knew it from a bottle of vinegar. Get Madonna, and a host of others to say they swear by it and others will want it, regardless. Same system. Different package.

Erik


eintology,

Although HIT was becoming popular during those days thanks to guys like the MENTZER brothers and Casey Viator who were literally the poster boys of HIT at that time and were actually the ones who made people interested on the subject. In fact I honestly beleive that without those guys Arthur Jones' ideas would not have been brought out to the mainstream! But the truth is MOST at that time until now still training high volume style (influenced by Joe Weider).

Like it or not to promote HIT effectively we must have guys who are successful in the field that could promote the idea and people could look up and listen to. As I mentioned earlier it is just unfortunate that MOST people are not really interested in PHILOSOPHY or LOGICAL EXPLANATIONS. All they want are visual proof to convince them that the stuff works. Joe Weider was a brilliant with his Marketing and promotions employing top bodybuilders to promote his method and products making the public beleive that he was the MASTER TRAINER of all the top CHAMPS.

I guess for HIT to be succesful we should follow more or less what Joe did.

PEACE.
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eintology

California, USA

Thanks Neuro,

Personally, I think it's a fascinating question that Bubba Earl asked. Because on the surface it seems simple, and because all of you know the science behind the methodology, there is a confidence in the system. Confidence comes largely from the understanding. But societies are dicey in general. How they interact, and what moves and sustains them, is brought to light with the initial question that he asked. I still think a lot of it has to do with people looking over their shoulder to see what others are doing and emulating. For how long they are willing to act on the emulation is a whole different story, as people bounce. I see and then also hear this type of conversation whenever I am in the gym ? the question of what they can do next?

And I don't know, if they are considered to be the poster boys, if we are looking at a marketing angle, I can't help thinking that Casey Viator or even Mike Mentzer have the same kind of draw that Weider went after. It's a dfferent appeal. Just as personalities they don't have it. A tight niche following yes. But nothing broad based.

And I think everything Scott said is dead on. Many live in a world looking toward a kind of mystic expression, even outside the arts. In arts, where one could argue it should be found, it's almost non existent in pop culture, but mysticism has found a home in the healing arts, that's for sure. But even Frank Zane is still stuck on this idea that he can change the individual shape of his muscles by the exercise he chooses. What could be said that would change his mind, I have no idea. He has a great physique himself, so people buy it?

Erik
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BF Bullpup

Massachusetts, USA


And I don't know, if they are considered to be the poster boys, if we are looking at a marketing angle, I can't help thinking that Casey Viator or even Mike Mentzer have the same kind of draw that Weider went after. It's a dfferent appeal. Just as personalities they don't have it. A tight niche following yes. But nothing broad based.


I agree with that. Sorry to sound shallow, but probably the two biggest voices of HIT, Arthur Jones and Mike Mentzer, were considered to be eccentrics at best, jerks at worst. Casey is a genetic monster, Ray was usually in the shadows of his more genetically gifted brother, and Boyer Coe... well, that's one.

None of them can compare to the personalities of the HVT guys: Joe Weider, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and many of the "colorful" personalities from Weider's magazines and IFBB events.

Myself I wasn't convinced to try HIT until reading Ell Darden's interview on T-Nation. A mostly normal guy championing HIT for once... I was convinced enough to buy his new book and am convinced enough to give it a honest try.

I don't think it's so much that we need proof that HIT works. It's more how we need to present it to the exercise-conscious public.
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rtestes

Mississippi, USA

H.I.T. needs some contest winners that say It is all I used. It needs a Brad Pitt saying I used HIT to build my body for the movie Fight Club. President Bush saying after I hurt myself running, I moved to HIT.

The sad fact is we can't present anyone that moved to an outstanding place in the game, only using HIT, and that is after a good 30 years out in front of public. Ellington Darden has done more for HIT than anyone with his books. But in his books, he has yet to show a body build only by HIT from start to finish.

I wonder is it possible, can HIT build a body to win the top contest with or without drugs.
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Drew Baye

Florida, USA

I believe Brad Pitt did SuperSlow for a while at a facility in Philadelphia. Not sure about the details, how long he was training there, or what he's doing now.

Drew Baye
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HeavyHitter32

I wonder is it possible, can HIT build a body to win the top contest with or without drugs.

Probably not. Even Dorian Yates who actually trained with Mentzer and in the 90's, still always did more than just one or two sets per muscle. He typically used one set per exercise, but multiple exercises and quite a few "warm up" sets.

I do think, as mentioned in another thread, pumping the muscle and forcing your muscles to hold more glycogen gives them a fullness that requires more than one or two sets. This is especially important at the competitive level.
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sniperfrog

I think the reason HIT is not as popular is because it is very difficult compared to volume. I see so many people in the gym that like to stand around and talk forever in between sets.I hear guys saying how they do 5 or 6 exercises with 3-5 sets each for a bodypart like they are bragging about how much they work out. To them the old saying is if some is good more must be better. Of course they will spend 2-3 hours at the gym doing this. Alot of people think to keep making gains they must do more and more sets. I have heard alot of people say this too. They mostly get that from the magazines.HIT takes alot of focus in the gym that most are not willing to give.Most People just want to go to the gym and hang out or check out chicks. It is comforting to them that because they're in a gym they are making an effort. Personally, I hate long, boring workouts and I hate to stand around and talk in the gym. I get in,work out, and leave.Volume training is easy compared to HIT and Humans like to make things easier.
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NeuroMass

Guys,

I agree that HIT need somekind of a marketing draw to attract an audience.
I liken it to the POLITICAL PARTIES where only 2 really stand out which are the DEMOCRATIC and REPUBLICAN parties. Eventhough their are also the small and LESS popular parties out there like the GREEN PARTY and the CONSTITUTION Party, etc. Those smaller parties do not get the same recognition they deserve from the general public because they are not as POPULAR or as BIG as the 2 dominant parties. In effect those unpopular parties are usually considered RADICAL and NUISANCE during election time and most people don't really take them seriously. I think that is what's happening with HIT because we are not as BIG and as POPULAR most people look at it as a RADICAL and doesn't take it seriously.

PEACE.
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