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"Doing more exercise with less intensity,"
Arthur Jones believes, "has all but
destroyed the actual great value
of weight training. Something
must be done . . . and quickly."
The New Bodybuilding for
Old-School Results supplies
MUCH of that "something."

 

This is one of 93 photos of Andy McCutcheon that are used in The New High-Intensity Training to illustrate the recommended exercises.

To find out more about McCutcheon and his training, click here.

 

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Hammer Strength, Gary Jones and the Troops
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AndyMitch

Coach Wood

I am interested in the birth of Hammer.

Would you mind just giving a little of your thoughts on Gary jones.

And the level of your involvement?

Which equipment did you have input on?

I own a unilateral leg press.
I bought it second hand, an I was thrilled to see on a sticker mounted on the machine...
"Made by; Gary Jones and the troops"
I thought that was priceless.
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DNAHelix

New York, USA

Ever wondered why every gym has hammer strength/life fitness machines? Well, apart from being the cheapest "furniture" one can put at the gym to create an illusion of a "better" gym.

Truth is, when a gym buys enough treadmills and bikes, the rest of "hammered" strength equipment is given for free.

In his book "The high Intensity training Mike Mentzer way", Mike speaks about leverage machines and calls them counterproductive or something to that extent. Everyone who met him, told me he was a nice guy, so that is obviously his way of calling them ####. As much as I disagree with Mike on many subjects, I will have to agree with hime on that one. At the gyms where I train, I routinely skip any life-hammered-strength products and proceed to more productive ways of training.
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

Albert,

What's so bad about Hammer's stuff? I'd like some citations.

They're machines, so why would Mentzer hate them? They provide resistance that increases as one approaches the end of the rep, which makes them very similar to Nautilus.

They're unilateral, low friction, well-constructed, and come in a variety of movements.

Admittedly, some just don't work (overhead press and RG pulldown IMO). But then again, some are awesome like High Rows, Super Incline, Decline Press*, and Overhead Curls.

(*To me the opportunity to do declines withOUT dangerously increasing cranial BP is a HUUUGGE advantage).

Best,
Scott
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AndyMitch

Like Albert they're just tools, nothing more nothing less.

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dipsrule

Pennsylvania, USA

kulitsa wrote:
Ever wondered why every gym has hammer strength/life fitness machines? Well, apart from being the cheapest "furniture" one can put at the gym to create an illusion of a "better" gym.

Truth is, when a gym buys enough treadmills and bikes, the rest of "hammered" strength equipment is given for free.

In his book "The high Intensity training Mike Mentzer way", Mike speaks about leverage machines and calls them counterproductive or something to that extent. Everyone who met him, told me he was a nice guy, so that is obviously his way of calling them ####. As much as I disagree with Mike on many subjects, I will have to agree with hime on that one. At the gyms where I train, I routinely skip any life-hammered-strength products and proceed to more productive ways of training.


Unless you can show where Mentzer speaks out against Hammer you simply dont know what your are talking about.

Show me and I will admit im wrong.

As for as I know the book you are talking about came out after he was dead.

In Hd1 he lists machines he likes. Hammer is on of them. What he said if one can use machines do so because they are better than barbells.

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AndyMitch

Oh well, looks like this thread died in the arse.
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HDLou

kulitsa wrote:
Ever wondered why every gym has hammer strength/life fitness machines? Well, apart from being the cheapest "furniture" one can put at the gym to create an illusion of a "better" gym.

Truth is, when a gym buys enough treadmills and bikes, the rest of "hammered" strength equipment is given for free.

In his book "The high Intensity training Mike Mentzer way", Mike speaks about leverage machines and calls them counterproductive or something to that extent. Everyone who met him, told me he was a nice guy, so that is obviously his way of calling them ####. As much as I disagree with Mike on many subjects, I will have to agree with hime on that one. At the gyms where I train, I routinely skip any life-hammered-strength products and proceed to more productive ways of training.


Mentzer didn't even write that book so if ur in agreement with someone about not liking Hammer Machines that would be John Little.
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DNAHelix

New York, USA

simon-hecubus wrote:
Albert,

What's so bad about Hammer's stuff? I'd like some citations.

They're machines, so why would Mentzer hate them? They provide resistance that increases as one approaches the end of the rep, which makes them very similar to Nautilus.

They're unilateral, low friction, well-constructed, and come in a variety of movements.

Admittedly, some just don't work (overhead press and RG pulldown IMO). But then again, some are awesome like High Rows, Super Incline, Decline Press*, and Overhead Curls.

(*To me the opportunity to do declines withOUT dangerously increasing cranial BP is a HUUUGGE advantage).

Best,
Scott


Scott,

If you like them, use them. To their defense, indeed there's no too much friction there.
IMO there are much better decline press machines around. Take a look at Hoist plate loaded, Star Trac. There is one pretty decent hammered strength machine - wide chest. I do not remember when I last saw it at the gyms anywhere. My local gym used to have one, but the scrapped it together with many others in favor of a crossfit grass patch, with sleds, suspensions and other functional exercise obscenities.
Lower body hammered strength/life shitness are equally as terrible and do not stand a chance against Star Trac, Hoist and definitely not anywhere close to the level of Cybex Eagle leg press. Well, Eagle leg press costs $7500. So nobody will give it to you for free no matter how many treadmills you buy.

I love machines, just not Techno Gym, Hammered Life, Precor or Icarian. Those are the berries from the same field. Got very little out if them. Always got more out of free weights and better grade machines.
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DNAHelix

New York, USA

AndyMitch wrote:
Like Albert they're just tools, nothing more nothing less.



HandyDitch pulls his last ace.
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HeavyHitter32

kulitsa wrote:
Ever wondered why every gym has hammer strength/life fitness machines? Well, apart from being the cheapest "furniture" one can put at the gym to create an illusion of a "better" gym.

Truth is, when a gym buys enough treadmills and bikes, the rest of "hammered" strength equipment is given for free.

In his book "The high Intensity training Mike Mentzer way", Mike speaks about leverage machines and calls them counterproductive or something to that extent. Everyone who met him, told me he was a nice guy, so that is obviously his way of calling them ####. As much as I disagree with Mike on many subjects, I will have to agree with hime on that one. At the gyms where I train, I routinely skip any life-hammered-strength products and proceed to more productive ways of training.



Mentzer actually recommended Hammer machines in Heavy Duty II - the last book we know he fully wrote. (I don't believe the last book was fully written by Mentzer as he passed before it was put together and his writing style was much different than reflected in that last book).
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HeavyHitter32

Leverage machines can be very effective, but it just depends on which ones. For example, on chest, I use a Powertec machine and it's very good, however, I never cared for the Hammer vertical chest press, nor some of those cheaper universal model leverage machines (although I found those still better than the Hammer I am referring to). I never cared for the Hammer dip machine either although I liked their pulldown.
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

HeavyHitter32 wrote:
Mentzer actually recommended Hammer machines in Heavy Duty II - the last book we know he fully wrote. (I don't believe the last book was fully written by Mentzer as he passed before it was put together and his writing style was much different than reflected in that last book).


I remember that now you mention it. Hammer was one of the ONLY non-Nautilus machines for which he had a kind word.
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DNAHelix

New York, USA

simon-hecubus wrote:
HeavyHitter32 wrote:
Mentzer actually recommended Hammer machines in Heavy Duty II - the last book we know he fully wrote. (I don't believe the last book was fully written by Mentzer as he passed before it was put together and his writing style was much different than reflected in that last book).

I remember that now you mention it. Hammer was one of the ONLY non-Nautilus machines for which he had a kind word.


Well, I have felt any of his heavy duty books to be worthy of an investment, so I would not know what he wrote in there.

I have the same feeling towards the hammer machines - not worthy of an investment. Not even with a plaque on it that says Gary Jones & troops.
I would not buy it even if it had Arthur's signature on it. Although I sincerely doubt Arthur would be involved in any such douchebaggery.
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AShortt

Ontario, CAN

I know plenty of HITters who swear by hammer strength. I just never felt I fit into any of them very well.

Regards,
Andrew
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Bastion

Hammer machines are great!.

My favorites are..

Decline press
Iso high row
Low row
Shrug/deadlift
Lying rear delt
Front pulldown
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Kim Wood

Andy: Gary was probably the best
"machine designer and builder" there ever was...and more than just a designer
of machines he designed actual
manufacturing systems...the guy is sharp.
But while being interested in the machines and building
them he wasn't all that interested in
training... Ideas for what machines
to design usual came from me and Pete Brown
(owner of the Cincinnati Bengals-NFL).
Gary also had good relationships with Mike Gittleson(30 year Strength Coach at
the University of Michigan) and Dr. Ken
Leistner. He would often stay at their
houses(sometimes for about a week!) and
pick their brains... The Hammer Strength machines were designed to be
durable, lower cost and bio-mechanically correct(Gary often called
'em ..."like a stripped-down '66 Corvette... no radio, no AC ...a
street machine")...he hit the target.



(there's mention of this guy Mike Mentzer on this forum. Obviously he
didn't write the articles and books attributed to him...any of you experts
know who ghosted his stuff?)
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AndyMitch

Ripper, thanks.

He designed the computer program to construct a machine around the body?

I've noticed the foam on the seat of my leg press is almost like a memory foam, that's pretty amazing.

He must have been working on all this when at Nautilus?
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HeavyHitter32

Kim Wood wrote:



(there's mention of this guy Mike Mentzer on this forum. Obviously he
didn't write the articles and books attributed to him...any of you experts
know who ghosted his stuff?)


Kim,

If you were very familiar with Mike's writings and style of writing from the 90s (such as Heavy Duty I and II, as well as magazine articles) it's very evident that some of the material from his last book, "High Intensity Training - The Mike Mentzer Way" was not the same. It seemed to contain his older styles of writing some of which seemed recycled and perhaps "ghosted" to some effect as he passed away before this book was released. Yes, this is speculation, but very evident. Some of the material actually contradicted what he had written in HD I and II.
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Kim Wood

good observation...the HS Leg Press
seat had "temper foam" in its construction...Gary picked up the
idea from "the foam that lined "space capsules""...in doing the HS Leg press the seat heats up your lower back and also serves as a "brace" for that anatomical region... the kid had more than a little bit of his old man in him(of course, that goes both good AND bad...)
You also picked up that following
the guide-post of
"function dictates design" Gary created
a "digitized" human being in his early
"cad cam" rig(the digitized man was
via measurements the Bengals' LB Reggie Williams) and the machines were created
"around" this anatomically correct
and fully functioning(via animation) figure...
a smart cookie. Much of what Gary did
on the computer was supported by Hewlett Packard... we were truly ahead of our time. (another case of "pearls
before swine"...based on posts in this thread)
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DNAHelix

New York, USA

Kim Wood wrote:
Much of what Gary did on the computer was supported by Hewlett Packard... we were truly ahead of our time. (another case of "pearls before swine"...based on posts in this thread)


So if people are not sucking up to you they are swine?

You could have been ahead of your time, BUT this was ONLY because there wasn't enough competition around. Now there is a plethora of competitors around, and you are far behind, if "on the map" at all. I have yet to see one (1) serious equipment wish-list that has your creations on it. Weren't you around Arthur at some point of your life? Then you forgot to learn the most important thing, that Arthur knew very well, always evolve.

Good night & good luck
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AndyMitch

I know little of mentzer and his books, but was it John Little?
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Bastion

From everything I've read of Mike's. As well as a few conversations I had with him. He liked, used, and trained clients on and recommended Hammer Strength machines.

I'm not sure about his earlier articles from his competition days. And I know John Little and Joanne Sharkey wrote and used a lot of his older material in the last few books that were released after his death. I would be shocked to find out that Mike didn't write Heavy Duty and Heavy Duty 2 Mind and body.
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Kim Wood

Mentzer was around Nautilus for years
(I think he came in 10th in the Mr. America contest that Casey won)...
talked to Arthur on the phone...he bought some of the early machines...
and later he "worked" for Arthur(in fact his only job(and his brother's job) was to go
to lunch with Arthur and I guess, laugh at Arthur's jokes)... he was a sad guy
who seemed to have "inner demons" but there was no way(based on talking to him
and seeing him inter-act with real life
situations) that he could have written
any book... (I think Mentzer is just
the latest horse that Little has chosen to ride...there were other people
pulling the puppet strings for Mentzer's earlier books and articles...)(don't get me wrong...I had no heat with
the guy ... it's just that he was a very
sad guy who really lacked confidence
and was lost...another bodybuilding
tragedy)
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Mega-duty

I believe completely that Mentzer wrote the books by himself. He was also a very good speaker in the 90's. But that last book is a different thing
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. More complicated rarely equals better solutions.
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