I originally picked up the Boker Plus G4 for a couple of reasons - 1) I didn’t own any knives with the Wharncliffe-style blade and 2) I’m a fan of Chad Los Banos designs.  The 3 7/8” Wharncliffe blade is really good at one main function – sticking into things.  If you’re a fan of Drawpoint-type tactics or “pecking/picking” actions in a reverse grip, then
this knife would be attractive.  I’m not so keen on the perfectly straight edge.  It was fairly sharp out of the box (not great), but since there’s no
belly on the knife, you don’t get a good bite with the blade during a slicing action or draw stroke.  I see it serving in a defensive role only or as a backup, I’ll rely on something else for daily cutting chores.  The large, flat handle makes it easy to manipulate and it carries light for such a large knife.  The 4-way clip is a nice feature (although it’s so stiff it’s hard to attach to anything!) for ambidextrous carry.  Overall it’s a solid, lightweight knife that will only set you back ~ $26, so if you don’t like
it for EDC, it will easily find a place in your glove box, backpack, or briefcase.

Everyone knows that pushups are a great bodyweight exercise – easy to instruct, straightforward to perform, and no equipment necessary.  But I’ve seen people get discouraged by not being able to perform them either correctly or enough of them.  An excellent resource for a workable pushup progression can be found in the book “Convict Conditioning” by Paul Wade.  He lists 10 steps that gradually lead the athlete from Wall Pushups to One-Arm Pushups. They are easy to follow steps that acknowledge the time necessary to get the joints, tendons, ligaments,
as well as the muscles used to the stress involved in mastering this movement.

Another valuable resource is a October 2011 article by William Ebben et. al. in the J. of Strength and Conditioning Research.   Their “Kinetic Analysis of Several Variations of Push-ups” gives a chart of the Ground Reaction Force of 6 different pushup variations as a coefficient of total body mass.  This chart can be used to quantify the approximate load and create a progression from lower intensity to higher intensity pushups.   The
results were found to be independent of gender or height.  Synopsis of their data:

Variation                       % of BW
Feet Elevated 24”            74%
Feet Elevated 12”            70%
Regular                           64%
Hands Elevated 12”         55%
Flexed Knee                    49%
Hands Elevated 24”         41%

My daughter dances 4 nights per week, a combination of tap, jazz, and ballet, anywhere from 2-4 hours per session.  Her goal is to become a Rockette and dance professionally.  I’ve been struggling with how to work some cross-training into her routine while still
taking into account her need for rest and recovery from the dance stressors.  There’s still a need for conditioning, core strength, and upper body work in order to support and
round out the current lower body demands. If Friday is a complete rest day after 4 straight days of dance, then Saturday is the logical cross-training day to get out and perform some alternate movements.

This past Saturday we warmed up with some jump rope and Indian Clubs then headed out back with the Martial Ropes.  We alternated some 30 second Fighting Ropes bursts using the 30’ x 1.5” rope with forward and reverse Bear Crawls while alternating drags of the 50’ x 2” rope.  We did a few sets of overhand and underhand power bursts (Brookfield’s “Tsunami”) using the 50’ x 2” rope.  Then we moved on to a couple sets of 2-Hand and 1-Hand KB swings and KB presses.  We finished off with Heaven 6 Sinawali using 2 sticks, 1 stick/empty hand, and both hands empty (I have to admit the Sinawali was more for me than for her).  It was quick and dirty, focused heavily on upper body and core, and was a nice change from dance.  The goal is to get at least one session in over the weekend, with additional days added if there are breaks in the dance schedule.  Will keep you posted.  

Do you like to run?  I hate to run and my knees hate to run. Currently my cardio work consists of KB swings and Concept2 rowing intervals.  But a Martin Rooney seminar at the Perform Better Summit in Providence got me to thinking.  Martin’s emphasis was not so much on running as it was on sprinting, and the subsequent conditioning benefits that sprinting provides.  So I’ve been more aware than usual about articles and research on the benefits of sprinting.

An article in the September 2011 Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research discussed the addition of sprint-interval training (SIT) to wrestling training.  The 
authors (Farzad, Gharakhanlou, et. al.) worked with 14 freestyle wrestlers with national or provincial ranking at a University in Tehran. Wrestlers, like other athletes, are often looking for ways to increase their level of fitness in a short period of time.  By using a relatively simple SIT protocol, the athletes were able to increase both aerobic and anaerobic performance over a 4 week period.  
What did they do?  Two SIT sessions per week (in addition to their wrestling training,
weight training, & plyometrics) which consisted of “…a 10-minute warm-up, followed by sets (3-6) of 6x35m sprints with 3 minutes of rest between sets and then a 10-minute cool-down period.”  There was a 10 second recovery between each sprint. Now that seems very feasible.  It’s low volume, but effective, and could be incorporated several times during a training cycle, in conjunction with skill training and weight training.    

Running? Still not interested.  But as much as I hate to consider it, it looks like sprinting should be added to my routine.