Over the summer, I was performing Strongman
Shows at the Fayette County Fair in Dunbar, PA.
and parents alike seem to have enjoyed watching
me bend horseshoes, tear cards, and bend spikes
while lying on the bed of nails.
This was the first time I ever performed
Strongman Shows of this kind, so it
was a bit of a learning experience.
One of the main things was having to go from
totally cold to being able to perform at a very
quick rate, to avoid injury.
So, I am going to list a few of the things I am
doing to stay injury free while doing the shows.
I realize not all of you perform strongman
exhibitions, but if you compete at Grip Sport,
Strongman, Powerlifting, or other sports where
you cycle bouts of activity and inactivity, then
keep these tips in mind.
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
1. Stay Hydrated
I have written several times about the importance
of staying hydrated. Your muscles just won't work
if you don't have enough fluid in your body, and
a couple days have been in the 90's so fluid loss
To stay hydrated, I hit my regular two glasses of
water when I wake up in the morning, and
continue to do so throughout the day.
This has kept away the dreaded full body cramping
that my buddy John Beatty warned me about due
to lack of hydration and salt.
2. Get Enough Vitamins
After the first day, I was feeling run down and
realized I wasn't getting enough fruit and veggies.
I have still not found a booth selling this stuff
at the fair so I bought a bunch of oranges, bananas,
berries, nuts, and mixed veggies at Walmart.
This made a huge difference for me.
3. Get Enough Salt
I mentioned the nuts that I am eating throughout
the day. I also have a back of sunflower seeds.
From my old baseball days, I can crack sun-
flower seeds like a champ. I don't do it during
the shows of course, but they are helping me
keep some salt going into my body.
I also grab a few slices of bacon from the
breakfast bar and stick those in a little baggie and
much on those between shows. Some sea salt
would probably be better, but I am making good
with these sources.
That's about it for me dietary approach. Now,
onto some more physical tips.
4. Solid Warm-up
Starting 15 minutes before each show, I am
running myself through a warm-up to get
my joints well-lubricated and ready to go.
I start out with some rolling on my cardboard
pipe (foam rollers are cool, but I like this better).
I hit my lower back, rib cage, lats, glutes and
hamstrings to get rid of some adhesions,
promote more blood flow, and adjust my
5. Back Wrap
I have just a cheap-o Walmart Back Wrap that
I use to keep my lower back warm. It works as
well as anything else I have tried. There are
more expensive options on the market, but I
bought this when I was on the road for a
Strongman contest back in the day and have
loved it ever since.
6. Nettles Patch
On the inside of my back wrap I have two
patches which also contribute to blood flow
into the lower back called "Netical Patch."
While walking through Nettles can make you
break out into an annoying rash, someone
figured out how to turn them into an awesome
patch. These come from Nettle Farms Inc., and
their website is transdermalinnovations.com, if
you are interested in checking them out.
7. Don't Sit Down
I try to avoid sitting down during the time I am
at the fair like I am trying to avoid the black
plague. If I need to rest, I generally try to lean
against a wall instead of sitting down. I do
enough sitting down while working to last me
the whole day, plus when I do, it makes me cool
down and makes my hips freeze back up.
8. Layer Up
Believe it or not, once I get all sweaty during
a show, once I stop, if the breeze is going I
start to feel cold, so I immediately throw on
an extra tee shirt. Rain has been hitting the
fair off and on, and keeping layers on between
shows has helped to keep me from catching
a chill when it is storming and when the sun
9. Elbow Sleeves
I am susceptible to elbow pain, and I am doing
more bending over the course of these 6 days
than I have in the last year, so I am being extra
cautious and wearing my elbow sleeves during
This is just one of the many ways you can keep
elbow pain like tennis elbow and golfer's elbow.
If you are susceptible to this as well, check out
our ebook, Fixing Elbow Pain. In it I cover dozens
more practices you can do to prevent elbow injuries.
Well, DIESELS, there are 9 things you can do to
prevent injuries, whether you are doing Strongman
performances, competing in Strongman, Powerlifitng,
or Grip competitions, or doing any other kind
of sport or activity that involves periodic lulls
of action over the course of several hours.
All the best in your training,