Are Cable Attachments Created Equal? Five Factors to Consider when Purchasing Cable Attachments!

All cable attachments the same? Why are some cable attachments more expensive than other cable attachments? This is an important question when we are all looking for the best value for our money. Whether purchasing the cable attachment for a fitness center or home gym, what factors should you consider? Knowing that not all cable attachments are the same, this will help you make an informed decision when buying cable attachments for your home gym or fitness center. What are the five factors to consider when purchasing Cable Attachments? 
  • Positive grip
  • Durability
  • Maintenance and cleaning
  • Ergonimics and biomechanics
  • Finish on the cable attachment

Positive Grip

When purchasing a cable attachment, consider the grip. After all, your grip is the weakest factor and will fail first. Don’t let your grip be your limiting factor. If you do, it will prevent you from getting maximum result from your upper body workout! Some attachments have a rubber or foam-gripping surface. Rubber or foam grips can be slippery and will limit your ability to grip the handle. Steel handles with superior knurling will always provide the best gripping surface. Not all knurling patterns are the same! If the knurling pattern is too shallow, you can loose your grip. If the knurling pattern is too deep, it can cut into your hands. From my experience, the knurling on attachments manufactured overseas is not nearly as good as the knurling on attachments manufactured in the USA. Next, let's consider durability.    [caption id="attachment_2916" align="alignnone" width="197"]All Black Iron Strength® Cable Attachments have precision knurling, which creates a positive grip. Black Iron Strength® Stirrup Grip with Precision Knurling[/caption]

Durability

How often are you looking to replace your cable attachment? If you choose a cable attachment with a rubber or foam handle, the rubber or foam will eventually wear out. However, solid steel handles will give many years if not a lifetime of use. In the long run, steel handles will cost more in the beginning. However, over time you will save money because eventually a foam or rubber will disintegrate. Also, with a strap grip, consider the material that the strap is constructed out. Most straps are flat nylon. However, the most superior strap for cable attachments is mountaineering rope. Mountaineering rope is much stronger and durable than traditional straps used in strap grips. In addition, mountaineering rope is much comfortable than traditional nylon. What about the maintenance and cleaning? [caption id="attachment_2915" align="alignnone" width="300"]Black Iron Strength® Strap Grips are constructed out of mountaineering rope. Black Iron Strength® Strap Grips with Mountaineering Rope[/caption]

Maintenance and Cleaning

If you choose a rubber or foam handle, both are is very difficult to clean. Since rubber and foam are porous, it is a harbor for bacteria! This is especially important to consider if you are purchasing cable attachments for multiple users. Solid Steel is easier to clean. However, the cleanest handle option is antimicrobial copper handles. Antimicrobial Copper Handles are a self-cleaning surface and kills 99.9% of all bacteria and viruses in 2 hours or less. This technology works 24/7. Check out this medically based independent research study in the American Journal of Infection Control on the killing properties of antimicrobial copper on fitness equipment.  What about the ergonomics and biomechanics of the attachment? [caption id="attachment_2861" align="alignnone" width="300"]Black Iron Strength Cable Attachments with Antimicrobial Copper Handles kills germs 24/7. Black Iron Strength® Straight Bar with Antimicrobial Copper Handles - Kills all Germs 24/7[/caption]

Ergonomics and Biomechanics

No doubt, we are all looking to live a long life and enjoy a lifetime of exercising so you need to keep those joints happy! When choosing a cable attachment, consider attachments with rotating handles. Rotating handles reduce the stress on the user’s wrist, elbows, and shoulder joints. Speaking from personal experience, when those joints wear out, it will definitely affect your ability to exercise. It is important that the rotation be smooth and fluid, allowing you freedom of movement to focus on your exercise and to not be limited by a poorly manufactured cable attachment. Cable attachments manufactured with IGUS® bearings allow for superior rotation and need little maintenance. Finally, let's consider the finish on the cable attachment. [caption id="attachment_2914" align="alignnone" width="300"]Cable Attachments with Rotating Handles are the most ergonomic Black Iron Strength® Low Row with Rotating Handles[/caption]

Finish on Cable Attachment

The most ideal finish on a cable attachment is a military hard chrome finish. Often less expensive cable attachments have a decorative chrome finish, which has is very shiny. These attachments are often made overseas. What is the difference between military hard chrome and decorative hard chrome? Why pay the difference? Decorative chrome chips easily and will start to flake while military hard chrome is durable and will give you a lifetime of use. Once again, it is important to realize that a less expensive cable attachment will more be costly in the long run when you consider the durability and are having to replace the cable attachment more often. [caption id="attachment_2913" align="alignnone" width="300"]Black Iron Strength® have a military hard chrome, which is the most durable. Black Iron Strength Straight Bars with Military Hard Chrome Finish[/caption] I hope you have found these five factors helpful when you are purchasing cable attachments. At Black Iron Strength®, our focus is to deliver a superior product to give you a lifetime of use.

Jump Start Your Workout – Include Cable Attachments

Are you considering purchasing a cable machine for your home gym? Does the fitness center you are a member have cable machines? If you are new to cable attachments, consider including them in your fitness routine. Cable attachments are versatile and give you a wide range for upper body movements. Recently, when I was at the gym, someone asked me,  ‘Why use cable attachments?’ My response was, ‘Why not, don’t limit yourself!’ Let’s discuss the basics! Learn what are cable attachments and what are some of the more popular attachments that will find in the gym or consider purchasing for your home?

Why use Cable Attachments? Cable attachments are designed to use with cable-based machines and easily attach with a carabiner clip to the machine. Using cable attachments will significantly increase the number of exercise possibilities with your upper body. Plus, as you get more advanced, there are lower body exercises that you can do with cable attachments, but I will save that for another blog. Cable attachments allow you to a exercise with greater range of motion because of the freedom of exercising in a variety of different angles. Unlike machines, you are not confined to exercising within a defined range of motion.

What are some of the popular Cable Attachments? Let's discuss (5) commonly used cable attachments that will jump start your workout: Low Row, Strap Grip, Stirrup Grip, Straight Bar and Lat Pulldown.

 

Low Row

[caption id="attachment_2858" align="alignnone" width="300"]Low Row Cable Attachment known as Double D Cable Attachment Black Iron Strength® Low Row Cable Attachment with Antimicrobial Handles[/caption]

The Low Row Cable Attachment is sometimes referred to as the Double D or the 3-D V-Shaped Handle. It is often used as a standing or seated row, which is a pulling movement. This compound movement works the lats and biceps. Click to see full product description.

Strap Grip

[caption id="attachment_2864" align="alignnone" width="300"]Strap Grip gives you a variety of upper body movements. Black Iron Strength® Strap Grips with Antimicrobial Copper Handles[/caption]

The Strap Grip gives the user tremendous options in an upper body workout because of the flexibility of the strap. Some of the exercises with the Strap Grip are bicep curls, press downs, chest presses, seated rows, and pull downs. The flexibility of the strap allows you to work a variety of upper body muscles including the biceps, triceps, lats, deltoids, and pecs. When working out with a strap grip, it is a one-handed motion. Therefore, you are working out each side of the body independently, which avoids one side compensating for the other that could create a strength imbalance. Click to see full product description.

Stirrup Grip

[caption id="attachment_2860" align="alignnone" width="197"]Jump start your workout with cable attachments from Black Iron Strength. Black Iron Strength® Low Row Cable Attachment with Antimicrobial Copper Handles[/caption]

The Stirrup Grip is sometimes referred to as the cable version of a dumbbell. Like the dumbbell, the stirrup grip on a cable unit allows for a variety of pressing and pulling movements. For example, the bicep curl would be a pulling motion and the tricep press down would be a pressing or pushing motion. Like the Strap Grip, working out on with stirrup grip is a one-handed movement. Therefore, you are working each side of the body independently.  Click to see full product description.

Straight Bar 

[caption id="attachment_2832" align="alignnone" width="300"]Black Iron Strength® Straight Bar is available in three lengths. Black Iron Strength® Straight Bar Cable Attachments (Available in 14 inches, 20 inches & 26 inches)[/caption]

The Straight Bar is very versatile because it allows for multiple pulling and pushing upper body movements. Some of these exercises include bicep curl, pull downs, high rows, upright rows and shrugs. With the versatility of this attachment, you can activate the major muscle groups of the upper body. Most straight bars are 20 inches long. However, some brands are available in 14 inches and 26 inches long. This is important because we are not all the same size! You should consider choosing a straight bar based on your shoulder width. If you have a wider stance, consider the 26-inch bar. However, if you have a narrower stance, the 14-inch bar would be a better choice. Click to see full product description.

Lat Pulldown

[caption id="attachment_2856" align="alignnone" width="300"]The Lat Pulldown allows you to perform lat pulldowns giving you a wider grip option. Black Iron Strength® Lat Pulldown with Antimicrobial Copper Handles[/caption]

The Lat Pulldown is a long bar that runs straight and curves at each end, which allows the user to naturally grip the bend in the bar. When attached to the cable machines, you use the bar to perform lat pulldowns to the chest or behind the neck, to exercise your lats. However, do not limit yourself to lat pulldowns! This bar has multiple purposes, especially when performing exercises with a wider grip. This includes exercises such as wide-grip upright rows, wide-grip cable shrugs, wide-grip seated rows and wide-grip tricep press downs. Click to see full product description.

By discussing the basics, hopefully, this article has taken some of the mystery out of using cable attachments and given you the groundwork to use cable attachments the next time you are in the gym. As a fitness educator and former owner of a personal training facility, I have always encouraged the use of cable attachments. Attach those cable attachments and ‘Jump Start Your Workout!’ My next blog, I will focus on the five factors to consider when purchasing cable attachments.

Kettlebells: Old-School Power, New-Age Technique = World Class Strength

A Brief History

“The reemergence of the kettlebell as a training tool of prominence in recent times has spawned a great deal of buzz about this supremely time-honored strength/conditioning medium”. J. Dellinger continues on to share that, despite a lack of documented info on kettlebells, there is traceable data to show that this type of strength training instrument has been used throughout the world, including Russia, Ireland, China, India, and Egypt. It’s no wonder that countries are competing for the original acknowledgement of this amazing, yet pragmatic “ring-weight”.

The Textbook of Weightlifting, published in 1910 contains four exercises, which used the kettlebell. Then, in 1924, the Milo Barbell Company incorporated six kettlebell exercises in their course series Body-building and Muscle-developing Exercises. The reason for the implementation of the kettlebell is obvious from two perspectives. First, it made lifting a heavy weight both convenient and practical. Second, the aesthetic shape made them ideal for strongman acts.

Arthur Saxon, nicknamed "The Iron-Master", was a German strongman and circus performer from the late 19th century into the early 20th century. Mr. Saxon had the following points of interest to say:  “The lifting of three, or even two, 56 lb. ring weights is far more impressive to the ordinary man than a much heavier bar-bell.”

We can all agree that kettlebell training methods and philosophy have evolved since the late 1800’s, Brian D. Johnston and Tommy Boyer-Kendrick continue on in Current Kettlebell Methodology. They state that in the past, the number of explosive and ballistic kettlebell movements were often more of a demonstration of ability rather than an applied and regular exercise technique. We know more about the human body, what our individual muscle groups are capable of and how to utilize kettlebell training to our advantage to increase muscle and performance.

Arthur Saxon, the only man to single press 370 pounds overhead with one arm, had this to say on the subject in The Text Book of Weight-lifting:

“In order to secure (the result of all-around development), the exercising must be thorough, and it must be all-around. Each part of the body must be dealt with seriatim.”

“Just think carefully over the various lifts, and you will see that every lift develops particularly certain muscular groups upon which a very considerable strain is put in other lifts, which do not, however, test these same groups so severely. It stands to reason, therefore that the regular practice of all-around lifting must (out) of necessity, be excellent practice, not only for all-round lifting, but also for special and particularized lifting.”

Dynamic Duo: The Maker and The Instructor

There are two key players in the kettlebell industry: the maker, Tom Grace, President of Black Iron Strength®, and the instructor, Michael Skogg, world-renowned kettlebell coach, educator and author.

Michael Skogg has this to say about kettlebell technology today:

“It’s for everyone. Whether you’re a 20-something guy in peak condition, or a 72 year-old grandma, we can work out a routine for you and it will make you stronger.” “A simple concept: Everyone can be strong with the (SKOGG) Kettlebell Method.” 

That statement is a huge jump from the iron men of the 1800’s to being a recommended weight lifting apparatus for a “72 year old grandma.” Here is the thing, when used correctly, at the appropriate weight, kettlebell training is ideal for all lifters. In The Future of Kettlebell Training, Brian D. Johnston and Andrew Short share the following:

Certainly the “olde tyme” strongmen exercise and methods will never go out of vogue; and neither will Olympic style lifting. Those lifts have become “traditional” and likely will always remain part of our exercise heritage. However, as we become more creative and have better tools with which to exercise, such as Modern American kettlebells by Black Iron Strength®. These new and innovative methods are easier to develop and employ, which meets the needs of our progressive society to bring this optimum weight training application to all as Michael Skogg referred to above. To learn more about the Skogg Kettlebell Method or to purchase the Skogg Training System, click here: Skogg

Let’s talk about the modern maker, Tom Grace.

Tom Grace, President of Black Iron Strength®, and developer of the Modern American Kettlebell, is no stranger to strength training in athletics and in military training.

Tom served as the Director of Instruction for the Department of Physical Education at the US Military Academy supervising 42 instructors, 57 programs and instruction for 4,400 cadets. Also, Tom was also the Women’s basketball strength and conditioning coach at West Point. Tom served as an Officer in the US Army, retiring at the rank of Major, from 1978-1992. After completing his Master of Science in Exercise and Sports Science from Penn State University, he returned to his Alma Mater to become an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Education.

With education and experience under his belt, Tom applied his knowledge to develop the top of the line, American made weight training systems. In fact, Black Iron Strength® has been awarded 15 US Patents and 6 Registered Trade Marks.

To check out Black Iron Strength Kettlebells and to purchase direct, click here:

Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells

Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® from the Competition

Polarity is a word that should be in every serious athlete or body builders’ vocabulary, and no, we are not talking about the obvious state of opposites attract, we are talking about taking your workout to a new level with the Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell Training System. This tower of strength, utilizing the magnetic power of 80 lbs. of pull per side, separates this adjustable dumbbell training system from all others.

The Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell Set is a patented, revolutionary technology because it provides the convenience of multiple dumbbells in a compact space. However, unlike other systems on the market, it is the only commercial grade dumbbell system. That is why these units are found in commercial and athletic facilities throughout the world as well as home gyms. Picture a typical gym, 20-40 feet of space on average is wasted by rows of dumbbells. Even though you can see them from any place on the floor, when you walk up to grab ‘your’ dumbbell set, they are in use. Talk about a major speedbump in your flow. So you are a home gym owner, CrossFit enthusiast, Krav Maga participant- It’s your turn. Imagine having every dumbbell you need in a four-foot space? Walk up, and in to the Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell WEDGE 40, pick up your dumbbells, snap on additional weight when needed, and you are ready to rock! No other training system comes close to offering you what Black Iron Strength offers; 40 pairs of dumbbells in 12 square feet! We aren’t kidding you- from 5 lbs. to 102.5 lbs. in 2.5 lbs. increments. You are training. You are specific. You have likely found yourself in a place with traditional set-ups where you are faced with being stuck with a weight that is too light, but you aren’t ready to move up to the next weight, not anymore, not with the Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell Wedge 40. Now that is smart training.

There are three issues with other adjustable dumbbell sets on the market. One, other adjustable sets are not commercial grade dumbbells. Two, other adjustable dumbbell sets use plate adjustments that are not totally secure and can easily fall off, especially if the dumbbells are dropped because the securing mechanisms are weak and can be broken. This is a hazard to the user and a potential lawsuit to a commercial or athletic facility. Finally, all other adjustable dumbbell sets on the market do not have the ‘look and feel’ of a traditional dumbbell. Have you ever tried to put your hand inside of a box and come out with the proper weight? Ergonomics people…. What about the hassle of returning to said box to adjust the weight? 5 minutes later…. The quick addition of weight in 2.5 magnetic increments has you back to lifting in seconds. How does your training partner spot you lifting a box-like object?

While Poles Apart may mean “very different; far from coming to an agreement”, that is not the case with Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell training systems. Take a look out there and you will read articles where people are stoked about this system! No one has asked for these testimonies, in fact, they have been come by inadvertently. People are excited to have invested in the top of the line, American-made, commercial grade dumbbell training system. The Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® – Wedge 40 is the most popular of the Poles Apart® Dumbbell Sets. This set has been shipped to locations all over the world. There are times when name-dropping is necessary, now is one of those times. It’s good press when powerhouse athletic teams are using this system and we think you should know. Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets, St. Louis Cardinals, LA Kings, Baltimore Orioles, Pittsburg Penguins, Minnesota Timberwolves, St. Louis Blues Hockey team, and the 2016 NCAA Men’s Basketball Champions, Villanova, are all customers of Black Iron Strength®, who have purchased the Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell System. It’s obvious that Black Iron Strength connects this opposition of forces, nailing the premium, solid steel nail on the head!

As if you need more reasons to incorporate the Black Iron Strength® Poles Apart® Adjustable Dumbbell Set in your space, click here for more spec info to build your brain muscle!

Black Iron Strength Poles Apart Specs and Additional Info

Grow Muscle and Defend Your Body with Antimicrobial Copper

In today’s busy world, most people are always on the move, and rarely think about what we touch when we are out and about.  Imagine the number of places you visit on a daily basis- from daycare to your kid’s school, the local coffee shop, your doctor or dental office, the grocery store, and place of employment to name a few.  Chances are, your hands would have touched many counters and objects or even made skin to skin contact with another person at almost every destination or pit stop. With colder weather approaching, people are bringing their activities indoors along with their bacteria! Places where many people gather become hotbeds of bacteria on every surface. As we pick up our morning coffee and bagel or hit the gym for our daily workout, whatever your morning routine may be, we are coming into contact with millions of bacteria every day.  With each surface we come into contact with, we are exposing our defense systems in our body to an overwhelming onslaught of bacteria that want nothing more than to make us sick and shut us down from enjoying this part of the year. In fact, bacteria are everywhere and can survive on most surfaces for many months. Studies have shown that up to 80% of germs are transferred by touch, resulting in thousands of people getting sick each year- even in places they think are safe (i.e. hospitals). For these reasons, Black Iron Strength® prefers to use Antimicrobial Copper on their products and equipment.  It is simply the best material for all surfaces as bacteria cannot thrive or survive on it. When at the gym, you are working hard to build muscle and lose weight.  Whether you’re working hard to fit into those favorite pair of pants hanging in the back of your closet or getting your body in pristine shape for a fitness competition or sports tournament, whatever your motivation or reason may be, you are sacrificing precious time to improve yourself.  What rarely crosses our mind is that on every handle, every bar, are millions of bacteria that have been put there by the hundreds or thousands of people who have lifted the same weight weeks and days before you. The good news is, Black Iron Strength® has figured out a way to help their customers avoid the setback of getting sick by improving fitness facilities throughout the United States with their Antimicrobial Copper strength equipment, which can be found in major universities and fitness facilities.  We encourage you to make the smart choice by choosing gyms that care about your overall health and well-being and not just your training results. A recent peer-reviewed study published in the American Journal of Infection Control adds to the broad clinical evidence base supporting the use of Antimicrobial Copper. It found:
  • Copper reduces bacteria in hospitals. CuVerro® copper surfaces were found to harbor 97% fewer bacteria than traditional surfaces in the hospital setting.
 
  • Patient rooms stay clean with copper surfaces. 89% of CuVerro® copper surfaces remained at or below the terminal cleaning threshold, while only 44% of traditional surfaces did.
 
  • Copper surfaces help keep unoccupied rooms clean. Surprisingly, surfaces in rooms without patients were found to harbor bacteria levels similar to rooms with patients in them (surfaces in unoccupied rooms met the terminal cleaning threshold only 4% more often than surfaces in occupied rooms). Using CuVerro® copper kept surfaces cleaner – even in unoccupied rooms (93% at or below the terminal cleaning threshold).
Antimicrobial Copper kills 99.9% of bacteria in less than two hours, and it does this naturally. Many studies have been done on the effectiveness of Antimicrobial Copper (CuVerro®), in fact, Antimicrobial Copper kills bacteria, and keeps on killing it. There is no special cleaning or maintenance to do which improves efficiency for gym owners and businesses. With applications ranging from the hospital to the gym, to schools, to your home, Antimicrobial Copper looks great, and it helps defend our bodies against bacteria and sickness. Black Iron Strength® is the leading manufacturer of Antimicrobial Copper fitness equipment. To see their line of high-quality fitness equipment featuring CuVerro® Antimicrobial Copper surfaces, click here. About Black Iron Strength® Black Iron Strength® products (visit www.blackironstrength.com) are sold by Grace Premier Fitness and Wellness Products, Inc., the leading worldwide distributor for the US Patented CuLEAN® antimicrobial copper touch points on the Black Iron Strength® free weight equipment handles and touch surfaces featuring the CuVerro® bactericidal copper components. For more information about Black Iron Strength® products, email or call Tom Grace, President of Black Iron Strength®: tom@gracefitness.com or 1‐360‐574‐ 6524.   *Laboratory testing shows that, when cleaned regularly, CuVerro surfaces kill greater than 99.9% of the following bacteria within 2 hours of exposure: MethicillinResistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Staphylococcus aureus, Enterobacter aerogenes, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, E. coli O157:H7, and VancomycinResistant Enterococcus faecalis (VRE).The use of CuVerro® bactericidal copper products is a supplement to and not a substitute for standard infection control practices; users must continue to follow all current infection control practices, including those practices related to cleaning and disinfection of environmental surfaces. This surface has been shown to reduce microbial contamination, but it does not necessarily prevent cross contamination.

Black Iron Strength® Knocks Out Gym Germs with Antimicrobial Copper

Copper is making its debut in a highly necessary place, your gym and health club! Black Iron Strength® knew the hot spot meter for germs was high on the touch points at the gym and they are using Antimicrobial Copper CuLEAN® on their weight products to go to combat. These areas where you grip are a breeding ground for nasty bacteria, including Norovirus and microbes like MRSA. Read on to see how Antimicrobial Copper in your gym can lead to a healthier YOU.

The Nitty Gritty Grip

How many Americans are going to the gym each day? The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that 58,000,000 Americans utilize a gym 2 or more times per week in one of the 30,500 gyms or health clubs in the US. Imagine how many hands (washed and unwashed) are gripping the same weight-lifting equipment each day across the nation. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases breaks down the rate of incidence of the common cold in adults to 62,000,000 per year, 5,166,666 per month, 1,192,307 per week, 169,863 per day, 7,077 per hour, 117 per minute, 1 per second. 1 adult per second will come down with a cold. 1 each second. The gym is one of the main places where adults spend time. Members walk in with their germs, trek animal/human feces on their tennis shoes, and then walk from feee weights, to machines, to the court. Along comes “Joe” who starts his pre-workout stretch routine on ‘said floor’, finishes, then leaps up and grabs a dumbbell. Hello stomach flu! Yes, health club and gym doors open to many every day; add warmth and sweat, and there you have the ideal breeding ground for germs.

Now that we have thoroughly grossed you out, let’s talk about how CuLEAN® antimicrobial copper can sweep the nation and improve these disgusting statistics.

Keeping it C(u)LEAN® with Copper

Copper use can be traced to ancient Egyptian times where it was used in applications because of its inherent, antimicrobial properties. Copper is the first solid surface material to receive EPA registration through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, proving copper’s efficacy against infectious bacteria. CuVerro®, the nation’s leading manufacturer of copper applications, has joined forces with Black Iron Strength’s patented Antimicrobial Copper CuLEAN® touch point application to reduce germ transfer on major pieces of gym equipment with high use touch points.

With the recent outbreaks of untreatable infections including MRSA, which are often traced back to the work out facility, Black Iron Strength® took the ancient technology of copper and applied it to free weight equipment handles. With this patented technology, Black Iron Strength® is the only equipment manufacturer to offer free weight equipment with antimicrobial copper touch points. Given that bacteria can survive on surfaces for months, Black Iron Strength® prefers to use Antimicrobial Copper CuLEAN® on their products and equipment. It is simply the best material for all surfaces as bacteria cannot thrive or survive on it. CuVerro® shares “CuVerro copper alloys are bactericidal – they kill more than 99.9% of bacteria that cause hospital acquired infections (HAIs) within two hours of contact. CuVerro® is a type of antimicrobial copper, but the term bactericidal is a more accurate description since CuVerro® antimicrobial copper alloys kill bacteria, and do not just inhibit bacterial growth. CuVerro® bactericidal copper surfaces not only kill bacteria, but they are registered with the EPA to make public health claims.” You can find out more about their products and the EPA testing on their website by clicking CuVerro

The POWER of Black Iron Strength CuLEAN® Antimicrobial Copper Gripping Surfaces by CuVerro®

  • PROVEN to kill 99.9% of bacteria in two hours or less.
  • ONLY EPA registered solid surface grips on free weight equipment.
  • WORKS continuously between cleanings–24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.
  • ECONOMICAL and durable. Lasts lifetime of equipment. Easily maintained.
  • RECYCLABLE, environmentally responsible, green product.

Lou Quint Jr. Takes Wyoming Athletic Clubs to the Next Level with Antimicrobial Copper Equipment

Lou Quint Jr., the founder and President of Health Club Management, Inc. understands the importance of implementing copper for the health and safety of his members. As the managing general partner of Wyoming Athletic Clubs (WAC), it was crucial to him that when members came to work on their health, that they left healthy. Since forming Health Club Management, Inc. Mr. Quint has been involved with projects ranging from Casino/ Hotel, Sports Clubs, Multi-Unit Club Companies, Residential Developers, Spa Operators, Developers and Business Expansions. Under Mr. Quint’s direction, Health Club Management, Inc. has provided services that produce measurable results nationwide. Mr. Quint is a dynamic, educated, experienced and well-respected figure in the leisure/ fitness industry; he is known for his research based approach and being one step ahead in his early adoption of innovative products, game-changers, if you will. Lou Quint Jr. spent a great deal of time researching products in an effort to offer members free-weight products with germ-free touch points. Learn more about Health Club Management

CuLEAN® by Black Iron Strength® and Lou Quint, Jr. Join Forces

Wyoming Athletic Clubs are the first full service, high-end health clubs in the US to purchase the CuLEAN® Antimicrobial Copper Handles from Black Iron Strength. In their clubs you will find the Poles Apart® Wedge 40s, the Poles Apart® Barbell System, a Kettlebell Set, an Attachment Management System and a set of Triple Threat® Dumbbells. All of the handles are the CuLEAN® Antimicrobial Copper Handles by CuVerro®.

Being in the industry for more than 30 years, Mr. Quint understands the importance of creating a clean and healthy environment. The health and wellness of his members and staff will result in more days spent working muscle groups, and less time being treated by primary care doctors.

“In this day and age, you can’t afford not to use Antimicrobial Copper. ” Pia Norup, MD

Want to learn more about what they offer at WAC, click this link Wyoming Athletic Clubs

Activate Complete Bio-Motor Abilities with Kettlebell Training

In last month’s blogs, we covered the crucial history and reemergence of the kettlebell. We also introduced Tom Grace, President of Black Iron Strength®, and developer of the Modern American Kettlebell. This month, we will will dive into the reasons why the 100% premium solid steel kettlebells are exactly what you want to add to your company fitness center, home gym, or if you are a professional trainer, you will want to highlight these kettlebells in your fitness portfolio.

Black Iron Strength® kettlebells are manufactured in the USA, making their kettlebells the highest quality available in the worldwide market. A distinguishing feature of the manufacturing process of Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells is the use of proprietary technology using a 25-ton press-through, making Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells virtually indestructible.

Black Iron Strength® kettlebells are an amazing tool to lose weight, gain strength and improve your fitness, simultaneously. They are the training method of choice for many power athletes, including wrestlers and martial artists. Kettlebell training activates a majority of our Bio-motor Abilities. That being the physiological compulsions that enable our bodies to complete a task. Our Bio-motor Abilities are: strength, endurance, speed, coordination, flexibility, agility and balance. Traditional or typical exercises don’t activate many of these abilities where kettlebells do. Matt Marchant, of Marchant Training Method, has researched and compiled identities of human Bio-motor Abilities. It is easy to see how Black Iron Strength® kettlebells, with their unique design, positions your body for stronger muscle gains versus a traditional bell.

The Bio-Motor Abilities:

1. Strength

  • May be defined as: The ability to perform a task irrespective of time. You are strong if you can complete the task, the time it takes to do so is not a factor.
  • Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells are a revolutionary design to take kettlebell training to a whole new level. The traditional kettlebell has a standard ball design, which places pinpoint pressure on the foreman. Black Iron Strength® kettlebells are ergonomically designed with a flat edge, which takes away the pressure point on the forearm.

2. Power

  • May be defined as: The ability to perform a task respective of time. Power is strength with time factored in - how quickly you can perform the same task.
  • Not only does the rotating handle of the Black Iron Strength® kettlebell protect the user from injury, but the rotation of the handle takes kettlebell training to a new dimension. The rotating handle allows the user to move faster in training, as well as provides the user with a greater range of motion. The power output when training with the rotating handle is significantly higher that when training with a traditional kettlebell.

3. Endurance

  • May be defined as: The ability to perform a task respective of the duration required to complete the entire task. Endurance may incorporate strength and power over an extended period of time.
  • In addition to the flat edge, the Black Iron Strength® kettlebell has a rotating handle that allows the user to perform the Olympic lifts with the kettlebell finishing on the front side of the forearm or the back of the forearm.

4. Speed

  • May be defined as: The ability to increase or decrease the rate of velocity at which a task is performed or completed.
  • Black Iron Strength® rotating handle allows you to work faster, time is saved when performing many kettlebell moves since this addition allows the kettlebell to move more fluidly around your body.

5. Coordination

  • May be defined as: The ability to transition between a series of smaller tasks involved in a larger task. Coordination of muscle contractions are dependent upon 1) recruitment (activation and deactivation) of individual motor units 2) rate coding (change in the firing of motor units) and 3) synchronization of motor units (involving more or less synchronization).
  • The rotating handles protects the hands from callouses and the wrist from undue force vectors, as well as diminishes the impact of the force of the kettlebell landing on the user’s forearm. This design is so revolutionary that Black Iron Strength® has been awarded three (3) US Patents on their kettlebells.

6. Flexibility

  • May be defined as: The ability to move a muscle, connective tissue, and a joint within its full physiologically determined range of motion.
  • Black Iron Strength® engineers have developed a knurling pattern, which is the perfect depth for the user. The pattern is not too shallow where the user can lose their grip, which can often happen with sweaty hands. If the knurling pattern is too deep, it can cut into the user’s hand leaving blood on the handle. This knurling pattern has become the industry favorite.

7. Agility

  • May be defined as: The ability to combine coordination, acceleration and deceleration in the performance of a task or series of tasks.
  • The sleek profile of Black Iron Strength® kettlebells is at the cutting edge of functional exercise movements – they activate full body movements through coordinated physical effort, mental concentration and dynamic intensity. Kettlebells are ideal because they blend strength, power, cardiovascular fitness, dynamic core stability, mobility, flexibility, and balance into a ‘condensed’ training.

8. Balance

  • May be defined as: The ability to control the proprioceptive, visual, and vestibular mechanisms of the body in relationship to space, while performing a task. (proprioceptive = muscles, visual = eyesight, vestibular = equilibrium/inner ear fluid).
  • Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells are ergonomically designed to include beveled bell and head angle for improved comfort, safety and use. This design promotes balance from the kettlebell through the balls of the feet to maximize carry-over to ground base movement, improve speed, power, and agility on the ground.

Bio-motor Codependence: All eight abilities work in conjunction with each other at various times throughout a game/competition or within the same movement. This leads to various combinations such as: strength-speed and speed-strength.

Black Iron Strength® in Action
We have added a video of Rachel Button who is the owner and personal trainer at Button Up Fit, showing the awesome design and functionality of Black Iron Strength kettlebells. Melissa Miles, along with her trainer Rachel, demonstrate the ease of use that Black Iron Strength kettlebells provide. Melissa Miles played women’s basketball at West Point (USMA). She was in the second entering class of women who entered West Point. Melissa purchased Black Iron Strength® kettlebells for her home because she values the craftsmanship as well as the functionality of the product. If you would like to know more about opportunities to train with Rachel, click here! Rachel Button Personal Trainer

Rachel Button - Owner Button Up Fit

Are you ready to activate your Bio-motor abilities with kettlebell training?

Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells are available from 10 lb. to 75 lb. From 10 lbs. to 25 lb., the increments are in 2.5 lb. From 25 lb. to 75 lb., the increments are 5 lb. There are two handle choices available: Standard 1 ½ inch Handle and the CuLEAN® Antimicrobial Copper 1 3/8 inch Handle. Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells can be purchased as a single, pairs, or set.


Kettlebells: Old-School Power, New-Age Technique = World Class Strength

Bringing Instruction to the World

Michael Skogg is a world-renowned kettlebell coach, educator and author. He is a leader in the fitness industry and an inspiration to all who have trained and learned from him. Michael is also a contributing writer for STACK Media/Magazine, the number one training resource both online and print, designed specifically for the development of the young athlete.

Michael Skogg was introduced to kettlebells by a Highland Games competitor over twenty years ago while stationed in Scotland with the U.S. Military. He was frustrated with his training program, which often left him injured and sore.

His long history working with kettlebells, understanding of how the body works, and the unique workouts and classes he has created make him a standout in kettlebell training. The SKOGG Kettlebell Method is the kettlebell program that Michael developed. The SKOGG Kettlebell System, which is a five DVD set designed to teach proper form and technique to anyone who is learning kettlebell training. It combines conditioning, strength training and power development in a clean, easy to follow package. This includes the use of kettlebells, body weight and other functional training equipment. This Method is used every day at the SKOGG Kettlebell Gym and on Virtual SKOGG by thousands of members around the world. This DVD System has introduced kettlebell workouts to enthusiasts in 38 countries.

Today, Michael Skogg enthusiastically shares the benefits of his SKOGG kettlebell workouts at the SKOGG Kettlebell Gym in Portland, Oregon. As the recognized kettlebell expert for the NCAA Division I strength and conditioning coaches, Michael was the key-note speaker at the 2012 National Conference for the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association (CSCCA). In addition, Michael Skogg awarded 23 Division 1 college strength coaches the SKOGG Kettlebell Strength Coach Certification after completion of Michael Skogg’s program.

To learn more about the Skogg Kettlebell Method or to purchase the Skogg Training System, click here: Skogg

No One Competes with Black Iron Strength®

Black Iron Strength® currently has more active US Patents in force than the rest of the free weight industry combined. Upon its inception, Black Iron Strength® launched a series of new products to help strength professionals obtain an edge in training. The goal of Black Iron Strength® was to provide the world's best free weight products, which would be manufactured in the United States with the highest grade materials and detailed craftsmanship. There would be no compromise on design and innovation.

Today, Black Iron Strength® continues to produce the best products in every free weight category and stands behind all products produced with a solid warranty. No other company in the world can claim that they manufacture higher quality Thick Bars, Solid Steel Dumbbells, Solid Steel Kettlebells, Solid Steel Barbells, and Attachments than Black Iron Strength®.

To check out Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells and to purchase direct, click here:

Black Iron Strength® Kettlebells

Thick Bar Success: Get bigger and stronger with the top brand that’s killing it!

Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bars are the highest quality available on the market. The patented rotating sleeves are a standout feature and only available on Black Iron Strength® Training Bars. Automatic training When utilizing thick bars, you are training your grip the entire time, freeing you up from doing additional grip exercises. Exceptional results are noted around the world in champion bodybuilders, athletes, UFC fighters, Military, NFL, CrossFit and Special Forces soldiers. Weightlifting is a true exam of human ballistic limits (explosive strength); lifts are executed faster, with more mobility and a greater range of motion during their execution than other strength movements. Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bars are the highest quality available on the market. The patented rotating sleeves are a standout feature and only available on Black Iron Strength® Training Bars. Read on to learn more about the unparalleled benefits of the thick bar, also known as fat bar, and how rotating sleeves are a must-have addition to your workout arsenal. Using a thicker diameter bar will allow greater muscle activation in the arms. This increased muscle activation creates significant muscle size and strength gains. Thick bars make your hands, fingers and forearms so much stronger that your body can stop waiting for your grip to catch up! You know this will unlock the strength and muscle gains in your upper arms, back and chest. Thick bar training automatically trains your hands, fingers and forearms at all angles. If you are bench pressing, the thick bar will train your hands and forearms in a completely different way than if you are doing chin ups with a thick pull-up bar. Thick bars are more to handle so you need to concentrate harder. Many have said that this forced concentration alone has made them significantly stronger. Thick bars evenly distribute weight over the entire palm of your hand (picture yourself bench pressing with a thick bar vs a standard skinny bar, get the difference?). Many trainers will tell you that having a fat bar makes training safer and less likely to cause injury. They also make the forearms extensors (the muscles on the top of the forearm) and forearm flexors (the muscles on the bottom) work more evenly which can help avoids imbalances, weaknesses and injury. Aside from serious issues, it also allows for more reps and you won’t feel the fatigue in the supporting muscle groups. Are you training for over-all strength, your perfect physique or straight up raw power? Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bars will help you get bigger and stronger using the science of thick bar training. The Power of Rotating Sleeves One of the key features of the Black Iron Strength@ Thick Olympic Training Bar is the patented rotating sleeves, which places our Thick Olympic Training Bar in a class by itself since it is the only thick bar on the market that has been issued a US Utility Patent. Watching Olympic and other weightlifting competitions, you will notice the importance of Rotating Sleeves. The sleeve rotation is important for lifts, particularly the snatch and clean movements, because it drastically reduces the rotational inertia of the plates. Weightlifting is between a man or woman and their weights, moving together allows for more uniformity in movement, lessening the opportunity for injury. Without sleeve rotation, the lifter faces more challenging lifts and a greater risk of injury. The rotating sleeves protect the user’s wrists, elbows, and shoulders of undue stress, which reduces the chance of injury. This feature makes it the most superior bar available on the market. The Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bar with Rotating Sleeves is the perfect choice to take your strength gains to a new level. Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bars are available in two lengths: 6 ½ and 7 feet. The 6 ½ feet bar was designed to keep the weight of the bar as close to 45 lbs. as possible. Even with the decrease in length of the 6 ½ ft. Olympic Training Bar, it is important to note that the length of inside collar to inside collar is the same as the standard length of any Olympic Bar. Therefore, all Black Iron Strength® Olympic Training Bars fit on any piece of free weight equipment to even turn your power racks and benches into thick grip work horses! Another distinguishing feature of our Thick Olympic Training Bar is the precision knurling pattern on all of the bars. This aspect allows for a positive grip, which promotes optimal strength gains. Like all of our products, Black Iron Strength® Thick Olympic Training Bar are manufactured to the tightest specification with the highest quality materials. The finish on all of the bars is military hard chrome, which prevents corrosion.
  • Finish is military ‘spec’ hard chrome finish for corrosion resistance
  • Bar diameter and bar weight engraved on the end of each bar
  • Fits all free weight benches and power racks
  • Precision knurling pattern on all bars to promote positive gripping
  • Only Thick Bar available with US Utility Patent because of rotating sleeves
  • Custom Bar Holder also available – vertically designed to save space
  • Quality Manufactured in the USA

Setting Fitness Goals For The New Year

The holidays are upon us, and if you’re like most of us, you’re more than likely indulging in peppermint mochas and holiday treats while promising yourself that you will work hard to get in shape in 2017. While we all try to start off the New Year with a promise for better health and fitness, let’s be honest here, it is difficult to stick with our resolutions. Over 90% of New Year’s resolutions are broken by the end of January! Why do most New Year’s resolutions fail? The most common reasons that our resolutions fail is that they were either too extreme or too vague, making our resolutions difficult to achieve.   The most common New Year’s resolutions are centered around fitness goals. Have you considered setting fitness goals for the New Year? Here are some ways that may help you to stick with your fitness goals in 2017:
  1. Set smaller, more attainable goals for yourself as you start out and gradually increase to larger goals over time.   It can be tough to get yourself back into the gym. The results are worth it, but the struggle can be very real. Find a way to get active and do something to increase your heart rate daily. Often short walks are a great way to get started. Over the first couple of weeks, you will notice that exercising will get easier and easier. As it gets easier, your confidence and drive will increase. If you incorporate weight training, consider CuLEAN® Antimicrobial Copper Weights by Black Iron Strength® to combat the winter illnesses. Black Iron Strength® manufactures the only weightlifting equipment with Antimicrobial Copper Handles. Copper handles have been proven to kill more than 99.9% of bacteria or other germs.
  2. Be very specific with what your goals are and write them down! Keeping your list of New Year’s resolutions somewhere visible will also help keep you motivated. Consider placing a list of your goals in a prominent spot, maybe on the mirror in your main bathroom. There’s nothing like waking up in the morning, and seeing your list of goals ready for your review as you brush your teeth and get ready for the day. This is a great way to remind yourself of your goals and keep you focused.
  3. Set a deadline, a realistic one, for each resolution and schedule them on your calendar as another daily reminder. In order to achieve any goal, there are steps. You can’t go right from the starting line to the finish line, right? There are many points of challenge in between. We recommend starting off with some simple, achievable, goals. As you hit them, this will give you confidence and will help you hit the next one, and the one after that, and so on. Keep your goals simple, but make them impactful so you will not only see that you accomplished your goal, you will also feel the difference.
  4. Pace yourself. Don’t just jump in the deep end without warming up or learning how to swim first. You’re more than likely to burn yourself out if you start doing daily doubles at the beginning of your new routines. Remember that this is a process. Everything takes time, a whole lot of patience, and strong will. We know you have goals of extreme fitness, but it has to start somewhere. Make sure you are not over working your body. Some of the factors to consider are age, gender, weight, etc. Make sure you are working out enough to challenge yourself, but not so much that you cannot move for your next workout.
  5. Have fun with it! You’re more than likely to continue doing something you enjoy. If you can keep everything in mind, and build the intensity of your routine at a steady rate, your strength and endurance will grow, and soon it will not be so hard as it will be enjoyable to get your workout done!
  6. Don’t quit! It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to achieve your goal. You only fail the second you decide to throw in the towel. Consistency is key to literally EVERYTHING. There are always going to be those days where we struggle to get out of bed in the morning, or where we do not want to do our workout. Will we feel better after we do it? Of course! Is motivation still a real struggle? Yes, it is. The times when you make the biggest gains are the days you did not want to work out in the first place. If you are having trouble turning off the snooze button during the long cold winter months, watch this video.
Don’t repeat the past and allow your fitness resolutions in 2017 to fall by wayside. Whether you work out at the gym, home, or office, having the right equipment can mean all the difference. If you know someone (yourself included) who could use more muscle in 2017, consider Black Iron Strength® free weight products. With 15 patents on our equipment, we’re sure you will enjoy the experience, and get a better workout on our equipment. Be intentional when setting your goals and make it a great year! Cheers to hitting your goals in 2017!