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Thursday, June 07, 2012

Creating Tension to Increase Strength

Today, I am sharing with you one of the biggest
keys to improving strength performance, and I
learned this when I first started tearing cards.
Incidentally, the Card Tearing Week special is
still going on and you can pick up the Card
Tearing eBook for just $19.99 right here.
When I first started tearing cards, there was
a lot of grunting, sweating, and fury, but there 
wasn't much tearing going on with the deck of 
Instead, the cards would slide all over the place
and I couldn't do what I wanted with them. 
Maybe you have seen this when you have torn
a deck of cards?
Eventually the decks would tear, but they were
turned into a mess because I had no control
over what I was doing.
This was very early in my strength journey, and
I was learning as I was going, and around that time
I read an article by Pavel Tsatsouline about Tension.
He wrote about creating Tension in the larger
muscles of the body in order to stabilize joints
and transfer this strength into the extremities. 
He was talking about the Bench Press in the
article, but I thought, "this has got to work
for card tearing."
So, I began experimenting with Tension, and
I found that if I squeezed the deck of cards really
hard, the muscles all the way up my arms and
into my torso would eventually all turn on as well.
Give it a try - you will see for yourself what I mean.
If you don't feel it, then practice it, because Tension
is a skill.
So then I thought, well what if I tense up the upper
back and torso first?
What I found was the Tension would radiate down
the arms into the hands (just like Pavel had described
in the Bench article) and it felt like I had a much
better grip on the cards.
Once I got a hang of this Radiant Tension, card
tearing became a lot easier for me, and I even began
experimenting with other techniques of card tearing
(there's lots of different ways to tear cards, like I
cover in my Card Tearing Ebook)
What's awesome is, if you are passionate about Card
Tearing or another Feat of Strength, once you get
good at applying Radiant Tension with your favorite
feat, you can apply it to the other feats
And you can also apply it to other more conventional
lifts.  So even if you are not big into something like
Squats, you can learn to apply this concept to your
After a while, you will even notice that once you
strengthen your skill of Tension Production, you won't
even think about creating tension - you'll just do it
when you need to.
So, in a way, Tearing Decks of Cards can help you
improve your squat.
All the best in your training,
P.S.  If the emails become sporadic in the next few
days, I apologize ahead of time, but I will be
traveling to Ohio for Grip Sport Nationals and won't
have my regular computer access.  Wish me luck,
and I will have a full report next week.  And if you
want to pick up one of my most popular ebooks,