Slovenia Snowboard Trip – The REAL Middle Earth | The Cloudfoot Diaries #78

4 years ago I made a pact with myself that I would snowboard at least once a year, after how much fun I had first time round. Trip one was all about learning to snowboard in 4 hours instead of the forever mentioned ‘3 days’; I didn’t have time for the norm.
Trip 2 was the first time I hit a kicker on my heel edge, crashing and smashing my head into the unmerciless ice beneath. There was more soil than snow and I discovered an invention known to most as ‘The Helmet’.
Trip 3 was with my girlfriend to Verbier, coming off the back of a popped-patellar tendon just 3 months prior, and battling chronic patellar tendonitis in both knees. I made it to the end of each day, but only just.

Recently, the time came for trip number 4; Slovenia. You may be wondering where on the continent that is but I don’t want to show you. It’s currently a well kept secret and I don’t want to be responsible for opening the flood gates.

I was in great health for this one; good knees, good leg strength, better than before mobility and a probably tighter than ever budget. A set of cheap flights plus a too-good-to-be-true rental car deal, and two hours later from London we’ve landed with our lives. In -16 celcius.
The landing was one of the spiciest I’ve ever experienced. Every time I board a plane, I always prime my conscience with the possibility that this could be my last few moments alive. But for the Slovenia flight, there was a moment when I thought we were really going down. The captain had warned us about high winds and turbulence. Normally, I can’t wait to take my seatbelt off but for this trip, all I wanted to do was sleep, so I left it on. Just as well. The whole capsule had their belts on, too, apart from one woman.
WHACK!
We suddenly dropped what felt like to be 100ft in the air, falling so fast that this woman in question left her seat and smashed her head into her air conditioning and lighting control panel above her! Quickly followed by her hands holding her now newly battered brain as she fell back to seatsville and assumed a position of pain. Hopefully thereafter, putting her belt on.
I’d never seen that before in over twenty years of flying. Belts, kids. Belts.

Lock, stock, and 2 smokin' gunz. #snowboarding #snow #nosnow #guns #chairlift #mountains #italia #threemusketeers

A photo posted by Harry Cloudfoot (@harrycloudfoot) on

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Review | Methods of Modern Mobility Seminar with Emmet Louis

I first came across Emmet’s work on Youtube via his videos on the illusive topic of Loaded Progressive Stretching a couple of years ago and since then have seen various other clips on his approach to gymnastic movements, progressions and protocols etc.

Since starting my own service of providing mobility assessments and programming to clients, I wanted to continue my personal learning around the realms of mobility, flexibility and all things stretchy. Partly for myself and partly for my clientele.
Cue Emmet’s Facebook advert; Modern Methods of Mobility Seminar in London.
His ad caught my eye for two reasons; the cover photo of a partner stretch which looked pretty intense, and his name attached to it. Immediately I was interested but price would be the deciding factor for me. How much a seminar costs will usually turn on my bullshit detector, as I know when someone is milking it in this industry. I was pleasantly surprised with Emmet’s Early Bird pricing option of €300 for 12-14 hours of instruction, split over two days. (Note; if someone is charging over £400 for a weekend seminar in the UK, on subjects relating to physical training, ask yourself seriously if it is worth it and what you are really going to learn in those two days.)

Emmet demonstrates a Pike fold partner stretch

Emmet demonstrates a Pike fold partner stretch

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The Gymnastic Bodies Coach Sommer Interview | The Cloudfoot Diaries #67

Christopher Sommer Gymnastic Bodies

Coach Sommer
doesn’t really need an introduction from me. If you’ve never heard of him, it’s worth your time checking him out. In a nutshell, he’s coached a load of gymnasts to championship level over a few decades and knows what it takes to build a real gymnastic body – one that can function and perform to a high level but can also adapt and manage day-to-day realities and challenges. Sans bullshit.

Tim Ferriss did a wicked interview with Sommer, questioning him lots on the training process and various important points surrounding it.

A personal favourite takeaway from the interview was that it takes 211(+/-) days for soft tissue to adapt to a stimulus, apparently. I didn’t know it took that long for a change to be made but it makes sense when you realise muscle adapts nearly twice as fast compared to other softer tissues.

In terms of your own experience, what’s easier to build in less time, guns or range of motion?
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How Weightlifting Gave Me Patellar Tendonitis | The Cloudfoot Diaries #65

Now that I have your attention, this post should have been called ‘How I Gave Myself Patellar Tendonitis’.
Why?
Because it doesn’t really matter what the sport or activity is, if you’re body has a weak link, it has a weak link. The straw that breaks the camel’s back can represent any discipline. Shit, it can even be bending down to pick up the mail off of the floor. Where there are weaknesses, there are heightened probabilities of those weaknesses being exposed whenever you move the body around. Especially, if like me, you are a moving human who enjoys moving through new planes and axes and exploring just what is possible.

Patellar Tendonitis Diagram

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10 Realisations for Combining Weightlifting with Gymnastics; Months 4-8 | The Cloudfoot Diaries #63

8 months in to my Weightlifting journey and I’ve come away with some valuable lessons and realisations as to how to combine weightlifting with gymnastics training – a self-experiment that I’ve been delving into, despite there being not a lot of info out there.

Without futher ado…

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Praise Shiva, it’s DeLoad week | The Cloudfoot Diaries #60

After burying myself at the end of week 3 with a good old dose of overreaching, I couldn’t have felt more relieved to begin seven days of deloading nirvana.

38

Now’s the time to start the recovery process….

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Combining Gymnastics with Weightlifting; Week 2 of 12 in review | The Cloudfoot Diaries #58

The second of the twelve week, gymnastics and weightlifting combo-experiment is complete. Rather than post each day separately, I’ve compiled the training log and lessons learnt in to one post.

kai

I had the privilege to sit down with master stuntman and all-round nice guy, Mr Kai Martin  (click the link and check his showreel..Holy Shit!) at the beginning of the week, to pick his brains on programming and the like. If there’s a goal I’m trying to achieve, relating to strength, hypertrophy or some for of gymnastic skill acquisition, Kai has probably done it – it’s his job to get in shape to match the actor that he’s doubling, and they include famous actors of all shapes and sizes.

Here’s what he had to say relating to my programme…

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When life gets in the way | The Cloudfoot Diaries #54

Day three of training and already life has gotten in the way. I could lie and tell you I crushed the schedule. The reality was I felt weak as piss, sore as hell and had a whole sandwich of life issues to get in the way of focusing on getting the job done.

I’m a firm believer of the power of our three centres; physical, emotional and spiritual. I can attest from my own experience that if any of the three centres are significantly out of whack, your training is going to highlight it. For me, Day 3 saw all three areas significantly tarnished due to life’s ups and downs and I found it very difficult to do even the most basic of drills.

threecentres

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Chewing what you’ve bitten off | The Cloudfoot Diaries #53

Day 2 of the ninja blueprint and I’m already sore as shit. Awesome. Clearly got a long way to go.
This session was a focus on Weightlifting, complemented by some gymnastics dynamic strength work and shoulder prehab/mobility work.

Foam Roll – Adductors, ITB, Quads, Thoracic, Pecs, Hip Flexors
Lacrosse Ball – Calves, Piriformis

Pulse Raiser – Skipping for 200 contacts

Mobility – Variety of exercises for 5 minutes, specific attention to ankles, hips/adductors and thoracic spine.

2 sets x 10r GHD with PVC pipe behind neck – also courtesy of Klokov.

Handstands – 5 sets for max. time on paralettes – with aid of the wall where necessary. The goal here is to really differentiate between a stacked position versus a banana-shaped handstand. Banana is much easier to hold, but stacked is the style I’d rather master.

handstandstyles

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Revisiting Sprinting and APRE Front Squats | The Cloudfoot Diaries #52

sprinting

Day 1 of the ninja blueprint programme is done and I’m happy with its contents, duration and programming, however, not so enthused by the DOMS it has caused right at the beginning of the week.
Allow me to elaborate…

Here is Day 1 :

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