Thursday, December 23, 2010

Buy a Product and Get A Personal Training Session Worth $120

Dear friends and fans of my blog, the festive season is coming and what better way to prepare for it than to get in shape so that you can eat big in the festivities and not feel guilty.

So i am offering you this very special privilege of a personal training session worth $120 when you buy any of the following products.

These are affiliate links and i get commission on your purchase.

How to claim your personal training session:

1) Click on the links and purchase the product(s). Each copy of a product purchased entitles you to one personal training session.

2) Email me your clickbank receipts to, together with your contact details.

3) After i have verified your purchase, i'll contact you to arrange your personal training sessions. Alternatively, contact me if you don't want to wait for my call:

Name: Herman Chauw
Mobile: +65 96406544

To your fitness success.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Fitness Equipment has Arrived

Here are some photos of our gym and fitness equipment.

 Full matted area

 Kettlebells and barbells

Dumbbells and weight plates  

Racks and benches

Clubbells and ropes 

Medicine balls 

Heavy Clubbells

 See you in class soon.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

TACFIT Report from Suquamish Police Department Chief

Reproduced from Coach Scott Sonnon's blog, original article here:

18490 Suquamish Way, Suite #105 / P.O. Box 1021
Suquamish WA 98392 OFFICE (360) 598-4334
Mike Lasnier, Chief of Police
Friday, May 14, 2010

Dear Coach Sonnon,
I wanted to write to thank you for sharing your Tacfit and Tacfit Commando programs with my agency, and for allowing me to attend the Tacfit certification in Bellingham.

As you know, I have a background in military and law enforcement special operations. During my time in the Marine Corps, I spent time in a special reaction force that secured nuclear storage sites, and later was a Platoon Sergeant for a STA Platoon, more commonly called Marine Scout Snipers. My service included deployment overseas with a Special Operation Capable Marine Amphibious Unit (SOC-MAU), and live operations on foreign soil. I was also a primary marksmanship instructor in the Marines, and shot competitively on rifle and pistol teams at the commands I served. In my 23 year law enforcement career, I have been a Master Defensive Tactics Instructor for nearly 20 years. I served 8 years on a regional SWAT team in an urban metropolitan area. I spent 3 years undercover working street level narcotics, and several more years as a detective assigned to a Federal Narcotics Task force. I have founded and commanded Tactical Tracking Teams at 2 different agencies for the past 8 years, and the team I currently command is used state-wide to hunt down fugitives, find missing persons, and engage in operations against foreign drug trafficking organizations which use rural areas in Washington State to manufacture illegal drugs.

As a Chief of Police for over a decade now, I have seen the cost of law enforcement officers not staying in good physical condition. Many agency administrators wince every time they have defensive tactics or other physical training, because they know that there will be multiple injuries, L&I claims, and officers taking sick days in the aftermath of such classes. It’s often mundane, everyday things that cause officers to go out with “work related injuries”; walking, getting out of a car, bending over to pick something up. In my experience and observation, most “work related” injuries aren’t really “work related”. They are “fat related injuries”. They are “sedentary related injuries”. They are “inflexible related injuries”. The job requires them to move their bodies more than they do at home, so it’s likely that when something finally snaps, it will happen on the job, and is then labeled a “work related injury”.

The costs of such injuries are massive, and the damages are spread broadly. The government ends up paying higher rates for health insurance and L&I claims, and those costs are spread to taxpayers. Co-workers are required to work the shifts for the officers who are out injured, losing their own rest time, spending less time with their families and increasing their stress levels. Many employers require the employees to bear a portion of the cost of the L&I insurance, so all employees end up paying a financial cost for the on duty injuries. If the officer held a specialty, such as K9 or Tracker, the department no longer has access to that resource while the officer is out of commission, and those specialties are very expensive to create and maintain. Training programs are blamed for injuries, and are cut back or defunded. The reduction in staffing leaves less officers available to engage in special projects and proactive police work, and the agency ends up having to become more reactive, which benefits only criminals.

Throughout my career, I’ve striven to stay current on the best methods of training my people, to ensure that they had the abilities they needed to accomplish their missions. My search has spanned nearly 3 decades. In the Military, it was fairly easy; we had 3 or 4 hours per day to train fitness, and ample equipment and facilities. As I moved into law enforcement, time became more critical. Agencies do not have an over abundance of training time, and many agencies are suffering staffing and manpower issues in the current economy that are putting a further strain on available training time. Early in my Police Career, I attended F.B.I. fitness instructor courses, and was certified as a fitness instructor by the State. As a Master Defensive Tactics Instructor, I attended courses on advanced concepts in motor learning and development, and fitness program design, and even became a certified personal trainer for a period of time. Within my own agencies, and in my own life, I’ve experimented with a vast myriad of programs and systems. In my early years, I lifted free weights, ran, and used machines such as universal and nautilus. In recent years, I’ve stayed on what was perceived as “the cutting edge”, and experimented with P90x, Crossfit, TRX programs, various military programs, Kettlebells, and other devices and programs. In addition, I still train in the Martial Arts, and even engage in amateur boxing occasionally for charity events, no small feat in my mid 40’s. I have nothing bad to say about any of those programs. They are all good sources of exercise. Most of their practices are sound for attaining their goals. However, something was missing.

I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was missing. Intuitively, I knew that I hadn’t yet found what I was seeking. When I encountered a new program that seemed to have some of the things I was looking for, I’d give it a test drive. Several of my key instructors would help me, and also test out each program. Many of them were great programs for what they were designed for. The problem was, none of them were designed for us. None of them were put together specifically for the needs and challenges that face law enforcement officers, and especially the special needs of the law enforcement tactical community.

Some of the programs had pieces of what we were looking for, but were put together with other elements that were not desirable. Many of them were designed as crash courses to lose weight, but were not sustainable over the long haul. Some used “body building” techniques to pump up muscles for show, but developed little in the way of usable, functional strength. Some caused large amounts of wear and tear on the joints and connective tissues. Many resulted in over training, which subsequently lead to injuries. Some used movements that were valid, but simply do not resemble anything we do, or are likely to need to do.

What we were seeking was the “holy grail” of law enforcement and tactical training; something that met our challenges and needs, didn’t waste our training time, prepared us properly for the risks we face, but didn’t destroy or injure the officers as they tried to attain that goal.

I first saw a link to the Tacfit Commando program on a facebook page. I clicked on the link, and initially wasn’t sure what to think. The marketing program appeared to be geared towards “wanna be’s”, with references to Navy Seals, secret agents, and commandos. That alone would normally be enough for me to immediately dismiss the program and move on; previous programs using similar advertising tactics have been strong on hype, and weak on substance. The thing that kept me reading was that a few of the testimonials were from real world operators and combatives experts from the U.S. and Israeli Military Special Ops, and Law Enforcement Community. It was when I read past the hype to the content and fine print that my eyebrows went up.

The first sentence that caught my eye as I scanned down was “The ideal tactical training program must also target the energy system of crisis response: that means high intensity, three-dimensional movements done for repeated bursts of short duration, with fast recovery”. This was the first sign to me that there just might be something solid under the hype. That statement alone went up like a flare; clearly, someone knew what they were talking about, and more importantly, someone understood the realities of what we are required to do when things get really “hot”.

The next was “The extreme psychological stress experienced by active tactical responders requires a method that safely reabsorbs the adrenal dump of “fight or flight.” You’re of no help to your teammates if you’re sick or burnt out.” My jaw dropped on this one; the depth of understanding required to make this statement is astounding. This demonstrated that this program wasn’t just going to be about pushups, or busting a sweat. It demonstrated an understanding of our profession and the toll it takes on the human body, at a chemical and cellular level.

I read the rest of the fine print in depth, and I liked what I saw, so I took the plunge and purchased the program. I used my personal funds, since I still considered the program a risk, having been disappointed so many times before. After downloading the program and reviewing the material, I was impressed. I really liked that the program was instantly available, was downloadable, and came in formats that work on any computer, and also in a format specific to IPOD’s, which makes it incredibly portable. The fact that this program uses no equipment means it can be done anywhere. The fact that it’s on my Ipod means I don’t need a timer; I just hit “play” on my Ipod playlist, and follow along. The videos have a robust audio element, so not only is the timer included in the audio, but you also have coaching and specific reminders on proper form and effort throughout the program. The program is scorable, so you can easily keep track of your effort and progress, and the workout can be used as a test.

The real proof needed to be in the “test drive” of the program. At first, I was a bit skeptical of the 4 day wave protocol. On paper, it looks good, but it seemed a bit “light”. It was only after I experienced a couple cycles of it that it became clear just how effective it was. I felt GOOD. Really good. I had some specific moments that stood out. I got up to go down the hall from my office to get some coffee, and my body felt strange. I wasn’t thinking of working out, just grabbing coffee. What was so odd was that my hips were open from the compensation day. My body was more open and flexible than it had been in years, from a workout I’d done the day before. I could move. My range of motion was increased. My body was unlocked, and I wasn’t used to it, but it felt incredible.

Another thing I recognized right away was that I already knew the movements. I’d done them before. Not in the tacfit commando program; in real life. When I did the plank push knee for the first time, it clicked right away. “This is how I get up and move forward quickly with my rifle after firing from the prone position”. I’d been doing that movement since I was 18 years old in the Marines. The same was true for the other techniques.

I was scheduled to teach a defensive tactics class with another instructor after a few weeks of doing Tacfit commando. I spent most of the time as the demonstration dummy, being aggressively thrown, taken down, and put through counter joint techniques and handcuffing for 8 hours a day, for 3 days straight. What stood out was that, at the end of 3 days of this abuse, I felt fine. No sore muscles. No sore joints. No pulls. No tears. Nothing pinched or tweaked. I actually felt good. Normally, I would have been popping ibuprofen like candy, and sore and tight. Not this time.

I went to my Tactical Tracking team training, which includes a conditioning workout. I blasted through the workout like it wasn’t there. I recovered with lightening speed, had tons of energy and stamina, and could have kept going for a long, long time. I was finishing the work at each stage, and standing there, waiting for the rest of my team to get their reps done.

A friend called, who is coaching a 19 year old boxer who is preparing for an upcoming fight, asking if I’d help him prepare, by sparring with him. I haven’t sparred for over 8 months. Without Tacfit, I doubt I would have lasted 2 rounds. With my Tacfit training, I was able to keep going, round after round, and kept going for nearly an hour.
A friend of mine was training for a marathon, and invited me to go for a run. I hadn’t been running in several years, but wanted to try it again, so I agreed. I expected it to be pretty challenging. It wasn’t; it was easy. The aggressive, condensed conditioning of the Tacfit Commando program had prepared me to easily deal with standard cardio demand of running. I ran like the wind, and felt great both during and after the run.

All of that was in the first few weeks of doing the program. As for weight loss, I made a bet with my fiancé that I could lose more percentage of body weight than her in 30 days, me using Tacfit commando, and her using P90x. She was skeptical of the Tacfit Commando program, because of the active rest and recovery days built into the system. Her program took more time every day, had very little rest and recovery, and she was tired and burned out. She conceded defeat after 3 weeks, when I’d lost 12 pounds by doing Tacfit Commando, and following the diet that comes with the program. I felt strong, energetic, well rested, relaxed and flexible. I didn’t lose any muscle. I lost blubber that I’d collected by sitting at my desk.

After a test drive like that, I have made the decision to implement the Tacfit Commando program for my department. I can’t find anything wrong with it.

• It’s time efficient, saving my agency money and resources compared to other programs. A common saying among your coaches is “More isn’t better. Better is Better”. Your program has proven that to be a true statement.
• The Officers are building skills, not just working out. Tacfit practice isn’t just sweating for sweat’s sake. They are learning to move tactically. They are practicing and developing survival skills, firearms skills, ground fighting skills, as they work out.
• It doesn’t require any special equipment or dedicated space.
• Its health based. It isn’t about getting “big” quick, or doing crazy workouts and being sore. It’s about staying balanced, strong and healthy for life.
• It can be done by a team, side by side, in the same time and place, even if the people are at different levels of development. A beginner can work side by side with an elite athlete, training together, each being challenged to an appropriate level.
• The officers stay operationally ready. There is no “burn out”. There is no need for “down time” due to the officer’s bodies being destroyed or injured by some “crazy” workout. The workouts are challenging and demanding, but they aren’t insane; far from it, they’re intelligent.
• We all cognitively know that if we work on flexibility, we will be healthier, and less prone to injury. Your program is the only one that actually builds that concept into the program in an appropriate ratio. Joint and connective tissue flexibility isn’t a preface, or an afterthought. It’s at the heart of the program. It’s one of the massive pieces missing from other programs. For every exercise in your system, there is a joint mobility exercise that precedes it, and a compensatory stretch that comes after it. Over half of the system is focused on building healthy flexibility, movement, and injury prevention. It should be.
• The moderate and high intensity days are based on the best science and techniques known. No time or effort is wasted.
• The high intensity training is specifically targeted to the energy systems used by the emergency response community.
• Your program is the only one I’ve seen that has actual tactics, effort, and focus on the ability to develop recovery ability. And it works! Many suspects and officers can perform one massive burst of effort, but then they are “gassed”. Your training will give officers the ability to “burst”, recover with lightening speed, and “burst” again, and again. This is what wins fights. This is what resolves tactical and use of force situations with a positive outcome for Law Enforcement.
• Tacfit Commando is a step above other general functional fitness programs. Why should we focus our efforts on “general” fitness? We aren’t in a “general” business. We know what the requirements of our job are. We know what movements we need to perform, and the energy systems that will be called upon. Why waste our time pretending we don’t, or developing capabilities we don’t need, and won’t use? Tacfit programs are built for what we need; Tactical Fitness.
• Tacfit develops circular strength. Instead of becoming strong in a narrow, limited, or artificially defined range of motion, Tacfit works to develop complete, usable strength throughout the full range of motion of each key joint. 

This is incredibly valuable in our unpredictable and violent environment. I don’t always get to pick what angle my opponent will be at when I need to use force or energy. Having circular strength means I’ll have the power I’ll need to deal with challenges that come at me from any angle.

Thank you for your work in service to the tactical community. Thank you for your dedication. Thank you for the outreach you’ve made to my department, and our brothers in the military and fire services. Thank you for the health benefits we’re enjoying from your program.

Please feel free to forward this letter to any public safety personnel considering your excellent programs, and feel free to give them my contact information as a reference for your programs.

I look forward to working with you in the future, and am excited to see what’s coming next!

Chief Mike Lasnier
Suquamish Police

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Just for Fun

Just for fun, copy this and spread the love around.

What is 4x7

Updated 2 May 2013

4x7 is the official periodization model in CST.

Another commonly used synonym for "periodization" is "cycling".

Why Cycle

Instead of giving you the reason straightaway, let's take a look at what people usually want.

"I want to gain ten pounds of muscle and lose twenty pounds of fat. Oh i also want to get strong. And i want to run faster. And also to jump higher. etc etc..."

So they do weight training in addition to cardio (or HIIT for the better informed ones), and a lot of other training mixed in.

An example of this kind of "i want it all" programming may look like this:
Monday: weights
Tuesday: cardio
Wednesday: weights
Thursday: cardio
Friday: weights
Saturday: cardio
Sunday: sports (eg soccer)

If you have just started physical training, achieving some of these goals may be easy. Even if you train without any specific goals or proper training program, you will make progress in the first few weeks to months. Then you would hit a plateau.

Along the way some people would think that they are "hargainers". Some people train the same way year after year, lift the same weight year after year, look the same year after year, and get nowhere. At least some are enthusiastic enough to continue this active lifestyle. But a lot of people drop out. How many times have you heard people say "i used to work out", "i used to lift weights" or something to that extend?

So then, to avoid this lack of result, we need to have a plan to achieve our goals. And yes, you cannot achieve all of your fitness goals at the same time. Some complementary goals like strength and mass can be trained at the same time, but opposing goals like mass and fat loss are not so ideal to be trained at the same time.

Rather than waiting for the time plateau comes, why not start right? You would be less frustrated with lack of results. Furthermore, would you want to save time? Save energy? Train less while getting more? Prevent injuries at the same time?

Our Way

There is a wrong way to doing things, like the example shown above. And there are many right ways. There are very convoluted periodization programs that can put you to sleep just looking at them. But we are not interested in them, we are interested in how you, as a layman, can utilize this simple formula in your training to reap the benefits of periodization.

The 4x7 periodization model looks like this:

Day 1: No Intensity*
Objective: joint lubrication and active recovery
Content: joint mobility only
RPE: 1-2**

Day 2: Low Intensity*
Objective: compensation
Content: joint mobility and Prasara Yoga
RPE: 3-4**

Day 3: Moderate Intensity*
Objective: moderate intensity training/strength practice
Content: joint mobility, training and Prasara Yoga
RPE: 5-7**

Day 4: High Intensity*
Objective: high intensity training/conditioning
Content: joint mobility, training and Prasara Yoga
RPE: 8-10**

*Intensity is defined in the Intuitive Training Protocols.

**It is assumed that RPT => 8-10 and RPD =< 0-3.

Repeat this 4 day microcycle 7 times for a total of 28 days. That makes your mesocycle. Then you can either switch to another program, which can be of an opposing goal or similar goal, or repeat the same program with a higher level of difficulty (sophistication).

As an aside, another option if you need to keep some days free from training for whatever reason is the 7x4:

Version 1:
Day 1: No
Day 2: Low
Day 3: Moderate
Day 4: No
Day 5: Low
Day 6: Moderate
Day 7: High

Version 2:
Day 1: No
Day 2: No
Day 3: Low
Day 4: Low
Day 5: Moderate
Day 6: Moderate
Day 7: High

Pictorially, it looks like this:

Important Features and Benefits of 4x7

1) The No and Low Days

We are not saying "two days on two days off". You are indeed training two days and not training the other two days. But the non-training days are not "off" days. They are there specifically for a purpose, collectively defined as recovery. No Day focused on your joint health, Low Day focused on your soft tissue health.

You need to balance training work and recovery work. If you lack recovery, your ability to hit a real High Intensity would suffer. And please do not think that you can hit High Intensity all the time without injury or burn out.

It is a common saying that most people don't train enough to be overtraining, but they are underrecovering.

As mentioned before, you can add more recovery but not more training.

2) The Moderate Day

This day seems superfluous at first as it is only a practice day. If you can do High Intensity, why not High Intensity only right?

In simple terms, it acts as a psychological and physical preparation for the High Intensity session to follow. Having gone through a Moderate Intensity session, you would be more prepared mentally and physically hitting the High Intensity session.

3) The High Day

This day can seem superfluous to people who are not competing or don't want to achieve a high level of performance.

However it is a very important piece in the puzzle which makes your progress fast and furious. After the three days of No, Low and Moderate preceeding it, you have a surge of energy waiting to be released. If this is not utilized, it is wasted. This is the day when peak performance comes.

If you have done your High Day properly, when you come to the next Moderate Day, the load that was High becomes Moderate, ie it is a sign of progress*.

*Ache/pain/soreness is not an indication of progress. Progress is when one or more of the following occurs:
-A resistance that felt heavy now feels lighter
-A load that was High Intensity now feels easier
-More reps with the same weight while RPE (and RPD) decreases

Precise Yet Flexible

The 4x7 can be used for any training goal. Here are some examples:

For pure strength gains:
Strength (moderate), strength (high)

For strength and conditioning*:
Strength (moderate), conditioning* (high)

For pure conditioning*:
Conditioning* (moderate), conditioning* (high)

For pure mass gains:
Mass (moderate), mass (high)

For strength and mass:
Strength (moderate), mass (high)

*For simplicity sake, conditioning here is interchangeable with fat loss.

These are other possible combinations too like conditioning-strength or conditioning-mass but not that ideal.

Check out Bodyweight Exercise Revolution to see how to integrate training programs into the 4x7 cycle:

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

What Does a CST Workout Look Like

Updated 2 May 2013

A workout in CST in structured in such a manner to:
1) Improve performance
2) Prevent injuries

Warm Up (5-10 minutes) is joint mobility. It can be a multi purpose warm up using movements from the original Intu-Flow or Bodyflow warm up; or as prescribed in some programs, a specific warm up using unique movements to prepare you for the training exercises.

Training proper can be ANY proper program. Bodyweight training, Clubbell swinging, kettlebell lifting, sandbag lifting etc. for all kinds of fitness goals can be done exclusively or in combinations. Though we are not fond of barbell and dumbbell based training, you can do them if you like. Even single planar exercises like powerlifts or Olympic lifts can be done if they fit your fitness goals. The good thing is that CST does not restrict its practitioners to a specific style of training. Rather it empowers you with the tools necessary to negotiate your training better.

Common program design principles (acute training variables) apply.

Just make sure that you are not doing isolations like ten variations of curls or a thousand crunches everyday and think that you are training properly.

More on this would be discussed under a future article Is CST for Me.

Cool Down (5-10 minutes) is Prasara Bodyflow Yoga. It can be a multi purpose cool down using poses and/or flows from 1) Prasara A Flows, 2) Prasara Primer or 3) Bodyflow; or as prescribed in some programs, a specific cool down using unique poses and/or flows to unload your soft tissues from the tension created in your training.

The Importance of Warm Up and Cool Down

While a lot of people already know the importance of physical training and so called "know"* how to train, a lot of people do not know the importance of prehab and rehab, which is represented by the Warm Up and Cool Down.

*I say "know" because people could just go for a jog, do a few pull ups etc. and think they know how to train. Whether their program design is good or not is another story.

Prehab here refers to prevention of injury. Rehab here refers to recovery from the training load. There is another definition of rehab which is recovery from injury which is another story.

Note that these are not good or sufficient warm ups:
1) Stretching (especially hamstrings and quads)
2) Jogging (some even do this on the treadmill) or some other steady state cardio

A better warm up would be to do light(er) reps with the training movements. But still this is not sufficient.

And then how many people actually do any cool down?

A lot of people wonder what is wrong when they get aches and pains after training or picking up physical training and want to try less relevant solutions (eg. heat therapy, acupuncture, arch support insoles etc.) when the simplest thing they can do is proper warm up and cool down. Of course it goes without saying that good technique for the training proper is required.

Never skip the warm up and cool down if you want to be injury free. This is opposite to training in that you need to err on the side of doing more. Don't be caught in a situation which is too little too late. You can add more recovery but not more training.

Now, may i introduce you a program that would demonstrate to you exactly how it is done? This program uses only dumbbells to perform. Check out TACFIT Mass Assault.