Did Grimek Do Curls? (And Other Questions from Dinos)

Hail to the Dinosaurs!

I am getting buried in questions from readers,
so I thought I’d cover some of them in an email.
When one or two (or ten) people have the same
question, others usually do, as well.

1. Do we ship to the UK?

Q. I am interested in purchasing a book from your
website and was wondering if you ship outside of
the US to the UK? -- Ash

A, We ship anywhere – including Outer Congolia.
The on-line order system automatically gives you
the correct rate for international shipping once
you input your shipping address. For multiple
send an email with what you want, tell us where
you live and ask for a shipping quote.

2. Snatches and Cleans from Blocks

Q. You have mentioned doing snatches off of blocks
lately. What is the advantage over doing hang
snatches? Seems to me they would be rather awkward
have never done them but have done many hang cleans
and snatches. Funny how sets of more than 3 reps
are counter productive sets when oly lifting. Hard
to hold form for more than 3 reps. -- Keith

A. I do most of my pulling from the platform, but
want to try some pulls, snatches and cleans from
blocks just for a change of pace and to see how
they feel. They’re supposed to be good for speed
and explosiveness. Consider it an experiment,
with yours truly as the test subject.

As for reps – you’re right. Three is about as high
as I go on any OL moves. Speed, form and technique
are critical.

3. Combining Progression Methods

Q. I want to tell you how pleased I am with your book
Chalk and Sweat. I had flu-like symptoms over the
holidays and ended my current cycle. Needless to
say, I made great gains. Thank you for your help
and inspirational emails and books.

I took a week layoff and cycled back my poundages
between 10-20% and have settled on program no. 21
in Chalk and Sweat. This is similar to what I was
doing, but I still need to focus on the basics and
getting my poundages up. The program calls for 3 x 5
work sets but I also like progressing by adding
reps/sets. Once the weights push me and I’m in new
poundage territory again would it be appropriate
to combine progression methods rather than straight
single progression with 3 x 5? For example, drop
to 3 x 3 and add reps until I get back to 3 x 5,
or add weight, drop to 1 x 5 and build back up to
3 x 5. Maybe experiment with different methods for
different exercises? – Kevin

A. Kevin – Glad to hear you are enjoying Chalk and
Sweat, and making good progress in your training.
By all means, feel free to try different progression
methods. The name of the game is PROGRESSIVE strength
training – your job is to determine the progression
methods that work best for YOU. That’s one reason I
cover so many different progression methods in my
various books and courses.

For everyone else -- if you don't already have a
copy of Chalk and Sweat, you're missing a good one.
You can grab the little monster right here:


4. Neck Exercises

Q. Brooks, what neck exercises would you recommend
incorporating into your program so as to build a Dino
neck? -- Murray

A. Try neck extensions with a heavy-duty head-strap
for the back of the neck. 3 x 10 -1 5 reps.

For the front of the neck, lie on a bench, place a
folded towel on your forehead, and then place a barbell
plate on your forehead – be sure to hold it in place
with your hands! -- and then perform front neck
extensions. Again, 3 sets of 10 to 15 reps.

Add some heavy shrugs as well. Two or three sets of
five to fifteen reps – or five sets of five to eight

Start light and learn the movements – condition the
muscles – and then add weight slowly and steadily. You
can get incredibly sore if you jump into heavy neck

5. I read that John Grimek hardly ever did curls, and
that he did not care for them!  True? – Ben

Yes and no. As a young man, Grimek did an all-around
course of exercises that included plenty of the basic
exercises, including curls. Later on, Grimek did more
lifting training, but he and Steve Stanko enjoyed
doing the two-dumbbell curl and press. (With heavy
weights – as in, up to 80, 90 or 100 pounders). I
write about this in the Legacy of Iron books.

On occasion, Grimek would go on an arm specialization
program that included plenty of curls. And he was a
STRONG curler – as in, 185 or 190 for reps, which he
used backstage at the Mr. Universe contest as a
warm-up before going on stage.

But later on, he was trying to set a World record in
the one-arm dumbbell swing (250 pounds) and hurt his
arm. After that, he stopped doing curls and trained
his biceps with close grip pull-downs and 45 degree
pulley rowing.

At one point in his life – perhaps the 60’s or 70’s,
Grimek told Bill Hinbern, “I hate curls – I don’t
want to ever do another one of them.”

So, did Grimek do curls? Yes and no – depending on the
stage of his career, his goals and his age. Much like
most of us who have been training for 30, 40 or 50
years. Our exercises and workouts change over time.
Nothing wrong with that!

As always, thanks for reading – and if you train today,
make it a good one!

Yours in strength,

Brooks Kubik

P.S. For more information on John Grimek's life and
lifting -- and how he trained -- grab this:


P.S. 2. For more about old-school, Grimek-style
workouts, grab a copy of Dinosaur Arm Training
and the Dinosaur Training Military Press and
Shoulder Power Course:



P.S. 3 My other books and courses are right here:


P.S. 4. Thought for the Day: "Hard work isn't the
answer to everything, but it's the answer to most
things." -- Brooks Kubik