Do you want to live a long and healthy life? Do you want to know what exercise is best for optimal health and longevity?
Interested? If you’re over 40 you might be struggling with muscle pain and injuries from exercising. And we all know that can be really frustrating.
In this episode serial entrepreneur and human performance consultant Brad Thorpe explains how replacing dynamic exercises for isometrics exercises can help you build a fit, strong, and healthier body in record time, even if you’re in your 50s, 60s, and beyond.
The truth is that isometric training is one of the most underrated forms of exercise out there. If you’re looking for longevity, this is your answer. Listen now to learn how to turn your biological clock with isometric training.
Brad Thorpe is an exercise professional, an expert in isometrics training, an entrepreneur and 15x patent holder in the health, fitness, and human performance space.
He invented the Isophit Strength Trainer, the most versatile isometric strength training device ever developed, capable of restraining all human joint motion.
Introduction about Brad Thorpe [00:26 – 03:28]
What are dynamic exercises and why can they hurt us [05:15 – 08:24]
How did Brad replaced dynamic exercise with isometrics exercises and got a fit, strong, and flexible body in record time [16:06 – 18:49 ]
About yielding and overcoming isometrics [21:23 – 23:14]
How to do isometric exercises while sitting at your desk [37:49 – 39:50]
Brad Thorpe’s future projects [46:16 – 50:12]
And much more…
Do You Want To Build a Fit, Strong & Pain-Free Body at Home?
If you’d like to try the Isophit for an exclusive Legendary Life listener discount, right now you can save 10% off and get the best isometric strength training system ever developed.
>>Save 10% off the Isophit system for a limited time. (Attention: Use promocode: Ted10)
This is your chance to build a fit, strong, and pain-free body without killing yourself at the gym. Train smart, not hard. Get started today by visiting Isophit.com and get 10% off.
Podcast Transcription: The Secret To Longevity: Isometric Training For A Fit, Stronger & Pain-Free Body with Brad Thorpe
Ted Ryce: Welcome back to another episode of the Legendary Life podcast! I'm your host, Ted Ryce, health expert for 23 years - for 23 years I’ve been in this business, folks - and coach to entrepreneurs, CEOs, and other high performing professionals.
This is the show where we break down science-based information on how to lose fat, prevent disease, and live a legendary life.
And today's episode with guest Brad Thorpe, he is one of my favorite guests. He's been on the show three..., I think this is his third time being on the show or fourth time being on the show. I think third.
And Brad is here today to talk about something so important. So what is that important something, you ask? Well, let me put it to you like this. Let's say you're a person who you know exercising is important. In fact, that's your lifestyle, you exercise, or you run or you lift weights, you do crossfit, whatever it is that you do, or like me, you enjoy muay thai or martial arts or enjoy hiking or mountain climbing, whatever it is.
And it's so good for you, it's so good for your muscles, so good for your heart. Exercise is healthy for you, except for that time where, you know, whenever I do bench press, my shoulder hurts or whenever I do squats or lunges my knees hurt, or whenever I do some type of ab exercise, my back hurts. Why is it that something that is so healthy for us, all this movement, these sports, this weightlifting, the cardio so healthy for our muscles, so healthy for our heart, but ends up messing up our joints. What is going on there? And why is it that things that we used to do when we were younger, start to become a problem as we get older?
Well, you're going to learn something that..., today you're going to learn, especially if you're new to this show and haven't heard Brad before, you're going to learn about something that nobody's talking about, folks, nobody's talking about this stuff, name the top people who have podcasts, nobody's talking about this.
This is why we're having these conversations. This is why this is one of the best podcasts, if not, you know, I hesitate to say "the best podcast". I think highly of myself, but certainly there's room for improvement, but I get people on here that are here to help you. And that's what this conversation is about today. So, let's jump into this conversation with Brad Thorpe on how to prevent pain and stay strong for forever.
Really excited to have you back on! I feel like, Brad, this is like your, your business is doing really well. And my business is doing really well. You don't have to be here talking about how to do isometric exercises, I don't have to be here talking about it as well. If we wanted to cover something more, more sexy marketing wise, we would talk about intermittent fasting, we would talk about keto or putting butter in your coffee, but I feel like it's our job to be here talking about this stuff. Cause it's a conversation that's not being had with exercise. What do you think?
Brad Thorpe: Man, oh man, oh man! The interesting thing is, Facebook told me today that it was 12 years ago today I filed my first US patent on our Isophit Strength Trainer. So it's been a long time, but I've been down this road and the simple fact that it's still not a part of the conversation and we're talking at a university level, for teaching.
Like I interview a lot of people all the time for new positions within my companies and four year graduates, they spend about, you know, call it three days, studying what are isometric exercises out of four years. And it's a type of muscle contraction, it's a type of movement. And to be honest, it leaves them unqualified to be hired by me, which is unfortunate, because these people are wicked smart, but then you're gonna spend the next sort of six months to a year teaching them just the nuance of not moving.
And it's so overwhelming for a lot of people because it's so simple and it's so overlooked and it has such profound and lasting impact. So I'm excited to talk about it. I can talk about it to, you know, the end of time, we can go with and just for people to understand a little bit about me, I did a three-year program on fitness lifestyles management, was geared towards cardiovascular rehabilitation and exercise testing. I studied under the world's foremost experts on dynamic exercise movement and a type of therapy called muscle activation techniques, which is blowing up because it's taken the world of sport by storm.
So I'm certified and all that sort of stuff. And with that education and background for myself personally, and I kind of walked away from dynamic exercise because I was tired of being injured all the time.
Ted Ryce: Explain what that is, because a dynamic exercise, that term might not resonate with people listening right now.
Brad Thorpe: That is all your motion based stuff. That's your bench presses, your squats, you're running, your elliptical, stairmaster, rowing machines, traditional stuff you would see in a gym,
Ted Ryce: Every exercise you've ever done ever pretty much. And we're going to talk about why it's wrong.
Brad Thorpe: Well, outside of a wall squat and the plank, you know, or horse stance and stuff like that. So, and that's not to say it's wrong. It's just high risk and injurious and everybody that I've ever talked to, and I talked to a lot of people all the time, say “I've been injured because of dynamic exercise.” So what are we doing wrong? Because it's supposed to be about health, it's supposed to be about wellbeing, it's supposed to be fun and engaging. But yet it costs nations billions of dollars annually, because people go out and exercise.
Now, part of the problem is they exercise wrong, they exercise either infrequently or too frequently. They missed the opportunity to get the right dosage. They do activities that they were exposed to that they weren't prepared for, so the load might not be appropriate and you look at all that sort of stuff.
And I think exercise industry professionals like ourselves, we need to be screaming from the rooftop "Hey, before you start doing dynamic exercise, now listen to what I said, folks, before you start doing dynamic exercise, do isometrics, build a solid stable foundation of muscle strength and stability and then move!"
I didn't say don't move. So I don't want anyone to ever believe that I'm against dynamic exercise. I'm against being unprepared to do dynamic exercise. So I want people out there to understand the importance of learning how to contract a muscle before it causes motion. And that comes back to the world that I love and that I have basically over the last..., I really kind of, since 2006, dedicated my life to. So that's 15 years of my life and we go back a long time, but this goes even before we've met.
And it just comes back to learn how to contract muscle and then move it. It's not more complicated than that. It's just, we overlook it because it hasn't been sexy. It's not glamorized. And you know, who's kidding who? With the exception of a very, very small few people within the population, very few people enjoy comics anymore. They like motion pictures, action packed, exciting explosions. And that's what dynamic exercise is relative to a comic book, right? Comic books are easy, you can look through each frame of it and you can read a whole story, you can see how they move within not moving, but we, as an industry, we just we've forgotten about it, you know, to the neglect and the unfortunate demise of many people's health and wellbeing. And most people don't like when I say that, but it's kind of factual and it's supported by a ton of research that says people who exercise get injured at a very high rate.
Ted Ryce: I think you have a bit of an extreme view, an extreme perspective on things because you're very passionate about what you do and what you're doing for people. And also, you see the big issue and it bothers you a lot because talking to anybody, who's exercise for a long time, I had a conversation with a client yesterday and asked them how things were going. We completely changed this guy's life, right? Shout out to you, Jeff, if you're listening! He was obese, and now a year later, I mean, he got ripped in like six months. He went from big dad bod, beer belly to being shredded.
But we had a conversation about what's going right, what he would like to be better. And he's got an issue with his shoulder and it hurts when he does overhead presses, hurts when he does certain things.
And it's so funny. Now Jeff's a really smart guy and I'm going to help him, we're going to do another call together and I'm going to take him through some things and show him some of the isometrics I learned from you. But a lot of people, what they do is "Oh, I'm jacked up because I'm in there training hard. You got to train hard, cause if you're not training hard, I mean, really what are you doing, right? "
And a lot of people end up with knee pain, shoulder issues, back issues, whatever, what have you. And it's: "Well, I'm not going to stop exercising So what's a supplement I can take or should I go to a physical therapist? - actually usually is probably more a chiropractor - Should I go to a chiropractor? Should I get a massage? Or should I do more stretching?"
I've got a client right now, he does a lot of stretching for his back. And, I've shown him a couple of things. One of them is not isometrics, it's just a position to decompress the spine, just kind of like a relaxing sort of thing. But I showed him some isometrics, his back's feeling way better.
And so I want to also say this, Brad, I think this is important. You and I we've known each other for a long time. And how we met, we met through the biomechanics program. I found out about you in that program. And I was working with one of the toughest clients who I've ever worked with, who was, I think, he was 15, 14, 15, maybe even 13 at the time. And he had a stroke in vitro. So while he was a fetus, a cord wrapped around his neck, cut off blood supply, yet his stroke paralyzed, partially paralyzed on half of his body.
How do you train a guy like that, who can't do a bench press, he can't even hold anything on that hand? And you offered to help me. We hopped on a call and that was, that was where I started to like, oh gosh, that you helped me to kind of see the light in that way. And I was very motivated to help him. I wanted to, I enjoyed the challenge, but also I knew I didn't have the skills, I knew something was missing, but there was something that could be done. And you helped me with that.
But it's a hard transition, even for me as a personal trainer. I, and with so much experience learning, man, I went and I've done so many sort of, I've been in this business 23 years. I know a ton of stuff, been to a lot of certifications. But even when we met, maybe 10 years ago, and I was good in the game, super knowledgeable, you know, arguably right? But it was tough, you know, we could argue about that all day long right?
Brad Thorpe: I'm a huge fan, man. I'm not gonna argue with you at all about that. You know a ton of stuff.
Ted Ryce: Yeah. And what I meant though, was not even about me specifically, but about what does it constitute to be that knowledgeable and I was just kind of making a joke, like you may know a lot of things, but there's even more, a whole world even, lifetimes of knowledge to continue to know.
And it was a hard transition for me to make. Cause I just believed in you, I listened to you, I learned from you, I applied it. But I feel like now I'm finally starting to really understand what you were talking about.
Brad Thorpe: That's because you're a little bit older now. That's why!
Ted Ryce: A little more jacked up.
Brad Thorpe: Yeah. Eventually life catches up to us, you know? And you think about why that is. Right? So as we age, we naturally get a little bit looser, so that means just because we start to shrink a little bit, so you're not at your peak height anymore because you're now like, what are you like 43, 44. So like that. Yeah. So that window, right?
So at about 27 years of age, you start to shrink and we're talking a little bit every year, but what happens is because like, you know, because of all that happens, things become looser and looser. And we still exercise the same way we did when we were in our teens and twenties. Whereas like let's do squats and deadlifts and bench press. And, and there's nothing wrong with those exercises. When you're ... and when you're stable.
If you're not stable, that's where it's like "Oh, my shoulder starts to hurt a little bit!" Because there's these things, the scientific terms that a lot of people don't know about. One is called inertia, which is the consequence of accelerated motion. So that means if an object is moving in one direction and it's going to continue moving in that direction until you change the direction of force, like apply a little bit of a push.
Let's say you're doing a bench press where you change direction and go from the negative to the positive, but the weight is still going down. So you're going to have that little collision force that may or may not affect your shoulder positively or negatively. It depends on the day, that person, your fatigue state, what rep number it is, do you have a pre-existing shoulder issue? Did a pretty boy, girl, transgender walked by? Did something take your attention away from what you were doing?
And then, all of a sudden, it's like that millisecond, and that's all it takes to cause a lifetime of agony of defeat. Is that millisecond of "I couldn't fire it on demand, I wasn't paying attention." And now you are dealing with a chronic shoulder issue, you're dealing with potentially at .... If the load is big enough and the jerk was, not the jerk, the person, but the jerk motion was, significant enough, in that change of direction? You can really sort of injure yourself. And when we age - because I know you work with a lot of people in their forties and fifties - what happens is we get less stable.
And as long as we're practicing and preaching dynamic exercise and not a knock, once again, a factual statement, dynamic exercise has to be unstable. There's no level of stability to motion. And you can go, "Oh, but it moves in a guided path." It's like, yeah, glad you think that! Internally, there's this thing called an instantaneous axis of rotation. Meaning it's changing from point A to point B to point Z to point 163 million as you're going through a range of movement. Like when you're talking about ... like shoulder movement, you know, it goes from your AC joint to your SC joint, back to your like, you know, ... joint, that joint access moves depending on where you are within your range. So don't tell me that is stable! If your joint access is actually changing in real time and you just never thought about it. Which is fine, that you never thought about it, but it does exist.
And it is a factual thing that you need to prepare for. And if you don't know that stuff, it's kind of, you gotta bring it back to "Oh, okay, cool! Let's just keep learning!" There's more chapters to this book, let's call it.
So, a little tiny thing. Do you want me to tell you how I really feel? I, Oh man, if only I was allowed to… Today you caught me on a great day, man! You actually did. So things are going really well. And we're seeing a lot of positive change by helping people learn how not to move and more so to create muscle tension in an isometric format for the goal, for the goal of moving better.
Cause as we know, you've been moving a lot, you've had your fair share of injuries, I've had my fair share of injuries. You currently experienced a fair level of pain, the last time I talked to you. I almost experienced none. And I'm 47. The difference is you're still doing a lot of dynamic stuff, still searching for that answer and I've given up on the dynamic stuff.
I've moved away going, you know what? I was smart enough to realize that this is the stuff that keeps hurting me. So why don't I just replace it with a different option? And It's not to say that, like I still exercise a lot, I still exercise between four and six days a week. I just do isometrics four to six days a week. I'm stronger now measurably than when I was in my twenties and thirties.
And oh yeah, in my twenties and thirties, because I was an athlete, like I went to school on a volleyball scholarship,I was a goon in like box lacrosse. That's the stuff where you just go and fight for fun. You get three fights a game type stuff. And I was in pain for my twenties and thirties. And in most of my early part of my forties.
And it's like, damn, I'm like I, as I said, I studied under all these smart people! And I'm super knowledgeable myself. So why the hell, can I exercise without causing myself pain? And I just got tired of it. And it's, you know, it's kind of like, I feel as though I'm that guy who is now all of a sudden a vegan, not to pick on specific people, a group of people, but you know what I mean. It's like, Oh my God, don't eat meat because it's bad for you and all this sort of shit.
And it's like, well, yeah. It's like, well, you look at the stats and you look at the studies and you look at the metrics it's like, yeah! But I kind of actually just really liked meat. Okay, so that's, so I'm not going to tell you not to do it. I can tell you my story. I can tell you the success of a lot of people that I work with. But you want to do what you want to do. Just prepare better for the activities that you love to do. And how do you do that? Do you practice it more often or do you throw something in there that's new and unique that you've never done before called isometrics?
And I'm so confident if people throw in isometrics before the activity that they love to do, whether it's running, lifting weights, martial arts, karate, whatever it is, you will perform better almost instantly.
That's how confident I am, because I've seen it for 15 years. And, you know, with your story about your stroke client, I see that with the stroke patients I work with as well. So it's not just exercise. It's about lifestyle, it's about giving somebody the opportunity to perform at their best potential. And you know, somebody with a stroke is different than obviously a world-class athlete. But for a newbie exerciser is the best place to start, because it reduces the risks of the injuries that the exercising world has no one to become normal. We've normalized exercise injury, to the point where it's like, "Oh, going to the hospital is okay cause I exercise!" I'm sorry. That's just unacceptable, in my humble opinion,
Ted Ryce: I agree with you, Brad. And by the way, I've moved... you said something really, just something that stuck with me. You said, look, you don't have to stop doing all dynamic exercise. You don't have to stop doing all the things that you like to do, but just incorporate, don't do 90% dynamic exercise and 10% isometrics - cause we're all training isometrically, by the way, if you're listening to this right now, you're doing isometrics. If you ever do a squat and you're holding your body in a position, right? You're not letting your upper body fall over, you are isometrically contracting your back muscles to hold that position. You're doing isometrics all the time, if you're holding, bracing yourself on the bench press, which you should be doing, if you're bench pressing, that's an isometric contraction.
So there's all these isometric contractions, it's just people aren't intentional, they're not aware that they're doing them. Even if you're aware now, you're not intentional about how you train them.
And I'll have you know, Brad, most of my..., I've been doing isometrics every single day to one degree or another. And we can even talk about how to maybe do a workout like this. But the workout I did yesterday was,I did one dynamic exercise. I did pull ups, which I'm even thinking about doing it isometrically. And so I did pull-ups and then I did an isometric push up where, if you're listening to this and you're wondering how the hell do you do that, the way Brad and I like to do it, because I learned it from Brad is to really focus on what's called overcoming isometrics.
So there's yielding and overcoming isometrics. So yielding is like going down halfway into a pushup position and holding it there. Now what Brad likes and his whole machines that he's made, the isometric training machines that he's made, are based on his overcoming isometrics, where for example, you'd put a block or a bar and in this case yesterday, I pushed, I did a pushup and the bar wouldn't let me push all the way up into a full push-up positions with my arms straight, I was stopped by this bar about halfway up and I, and I just pushed.
And, it's really cool because, man, my elbows are feeling better. My shoulders are feeling better. I'm in less pain now than I've been in a long time, because of the isometrics. So I did isometric push up and I paired that with an isometric lunge on each side.
And then the second pairing of exercises, I did an isometric row and an isometric deadlift. So that was my workout, those five exercises. And I did two sets on each of the exercises. And I just, with the exception of the pull-up, that was a bit different, but with the isometrics, I did two sets and I basically just pushed until muscle fatigue, because what I know, and I want to ask you about this. What I know from exercise physiology and the science on hypertrophy or muscle growth is that you have to work the muscle until it fatigues, that's when the magic happens. So what I would do is I would put the timer there and push into until I felt like I was getting close to that , what you might call a failure point. So what do you think about that, man?
Brad Thorpe: I think it's genius.
Ted Ryce: Well, you, I learned it for you.
Brad Thorpe: So there you go! So if you learned it for me is it's gotta be genius, you know, it's a ..
Ted Ryce: Oh, who is this guy you learned from? Oh, me?
Brad Thorpe: Yeah, man, that guy is like so insightful and wow! You know, it's funny, people, a lot of people think I'm kind of like, way too serious. I gotta kill that idea. I am so not serious at all, I'm actually quite fun and enjoyable. I just don't like seeing people hurt.
But you look at the result that you had, right? What did you say? “I felt better.” Okay, cool! That's all that matters to me! If people are walking around and they're not in pain, right? Because being in pain sucks, there is nothing worse in life than being like, just walking around like nagging this, nagging that, and it's like, well, you don't need to! You don't need to actually take any medication.
Pharmaceutical companies will say that's BS. But let's have a medical disclaimer, I'm not a medical doctor and don't take that as pharmacological advice.
However, I don't experience pain anymore, you know, at all. As opposed to taking a, call it a pharmaceutical bandaid that says, “keep going, keep doing the activities that are injuring you!”, requiring me to take this pharmaceutical agent to mask that stupid pain. Well, why don't you just get rid of the catalyst to the pain? Why don't we make it more stable?
I'm of the, you know, opinionated, highly educated belief, right? I'm going to put belief in there because it is a viewpoint that most pain, and I'm not saying all pain, I said, most pain, is caused because of muscle instability. You’ve lost the ability to contract and hold yourself together, isometrically and therefore what happens is you have average joint movement that you're not even paying attention to that. Because you're no longer paying attention to it, you're not trying to fix it because you're told to go exercise.
So now it's like, I'm speeding up faster and I'm accelerating a lot of this inflammation, right? Nobody associates inflammation with exercise. It's only your nutritional habits and your drinking habits, like, hold on! What about the thing that actually causes compression and slapping and collision forces and friction, and you know, all these joint forces that you don't know the names of, versus, so we jumped back to the world of isometrics. There's a natural analgesic effect. It is scientifically proven to get rid of pain.
They don't know why in the scientific literature. So I'm not going to pretend to say, well, scientifically speaking, it is this. Figuratively speaking. Yes, when you compress muscle better, you cause better levels of muscle tension. Better. It holds the joint better together. It increases the congruency of joint structure better. It expands the arteries that may be narrowed because they were under stretch.
So it takes that tension off the arterial system or the cardiovascular system, it takes the stretch off of the nerve tissue, it takes the tension off the fascial tissue, the ligaments tissue, the tendon structure. All because you did isometrics. We enhanced the natural tone of muscle tissue, which is isometric in nature, not dynamic. So which a lot of people they haven't explored. So they don't think that way.
Ted Ryce:So I think an important point here is that if a person is feeling like, let's say they're feeling their shoulder, maybe their back, they'll go to a massage therapist, they'll do some stretching, maybe a chiropractor, maybe a physical therapist, and then what will the physical therapist or chiropractor do? Massage, stretching, maybe some exercise.
I think an important thing to realize here is if you have, you talk a lot about joint stability. So joint stability starts from the inside out. It starts with the... It's the way that the cartilage, the bone, in the case of your shoulder joint or your hip joint, the way that ball and socket sits, the ball sits in the socket. For, for lack of a, you know, let's not go into too much detail about anatomy, right? Just keep things really simple and not over-complicate them more than we need to.
So how that ball sits in the socket, but let's say you got a wear and tear there. The way it moves, it's different now. And you get that wear and tear over time. Especially if you're doing things that say for me, I had hip dysplasia, didn't know it, did a bunch of things that put a lot of stress on the hips. I have some degenerative changes there.
So my hips are now, you know, permanently change, I've got arthritis in both of them. So I may feel like “Oh, I need a massage!” And it makes me feel better, because human touch is nice. And you know, you're not really breaking up scar tissue or adhesions or anything, you're chakra loving massage therapist says that you're breaking up. But it does feel better.
However, if you... And the same goes for stretching. But the thing is that you're not really affecting that internal stability. And there is no way that we know now to do that. Maybe STEM cells turn out to be, you know, the thing that we're all looking for or some other technology, but the best thing that we can do now, and one of the things that I try to get clients doing is shift from stretching, shift from if you want to get a massage, get a massage, right? Get a nice relaxing massage.
But if you're trying to deal with a problem, it isn't that tight muscles around your shoulder joint, it's most likely some degenerative changes have happened due to your lifestyle slash exercise. And the best way to do it is through exercise. But not physical therapy exercise where you have the band or the three pound dumbbell, doing what you call rotator cuff exercises, it's doing isometrics which are the best longevity exercises.
And even if you wanted to do a rotator cuff exercise, probably better off doing isometrics in general. So let's turn this to something a little bit more practical. Brad, how would you, let's say someone's like, " No, I got to stretch! My back gets tight when I don't stretch!". Which they don't realize that stretching really is exercise, right? Puts your muscle under tension. So, how would you transition? What could they do?
Brad Thorpe: So you know how they typically do the pec stretch, where they put their palm up against the wall and then try to basically dislocate that shoulder by like, you know... Obviously we're recording, it's an audio recording, but if I'm doing that where I'm like trying to rotate and open up that shoulder cavity. Just place the back of your hand against the wall and try to pull the back of your hand into the wall. Same exact position.
What is going to increase the strength and stability, the muscles that stabilize the joint structure. That's the isometric way. The stretching way, you're trying to actually dislocate that shoulder. Let's phrase it that way. And you go “Well, I'm not trying to dislocate it!” Well, what happens when you go too far? What happens when those ligaments get too loose? “Oh, but I thought I was stretching my muscles!” Yeah.
There's other things in that shoulder area that you're also having an influence over. Ligaments, arteries, veins, fascial tissue, actually the skin itself. Because we know what stretch marks are, is just the rapid growth or rapid stretching of skin structure. Which is damaging and life altering and permanently, you know, call it disfiguring if people look at it in that way, because they have marks because they naturally grew.
So there's that side of things. And it's like, okay, well, if I'm negatively stretching, so doing that pec stretch. And traditionally, like if we're talking about athletes, baseball pitchers are always doing like "Oh, I gotta open up that pec." But yeah, you know, they all run away for that Tommy John surgery, because that ulnar collateral ligament that they stretched the hell out of when they did that, maybe it wasn't the best idea.
And just for people to understand the ulnar collateral ligament is what holds that ulna and your upper arm bone, the humerus, kind of together. And when that becomes torn or loose, they go in, and I believe it was Dr. James... I'm drawing a blank on his name, whatever, doctor whatever his name was, who basically developed that surgery, that concept, but they basically harvest another ligament in your structure. And they do like a figure eight ligament to reinforce that ulnar collateral ligament. So that way you can throw the baseball faster, safer and prevent injury.
So now what they're finding down in the U S and other areas of the world where baseball is prevalent, they're doing preemptive surgery where they're just going in and reinforcing that ulnar collateral ligament amongst... and this is like 12 and 13 year old kids that they're doing this.
And it's kind of like, it's on a level of abuse where it's like, you know, I want my kid to be that, and I'm willing to make them have an unnecessary surgery, versus let's just get the structures that would stabilize the elbow joint on a pre pubescent, adolescent, teenager, stronger and more stable.
Cause throwing a baseball at high velocities is, you know, high risk. That's why they put in pitch counts, right? It's like, we know that if a kid at the age of 14 years old, throws it a hundred times, they're going to end up leading to injury and inflammation. First injury, second, potentially needing surgery, third, they're going to drop out of the sport that they love because of injury.
Well, why don't we just take a better approach to how these kids do a range of motion exercise? Instead of stretching it let's learn how to like change the conversation.
Range of motion is important, absolutely. How much, how far, how do we best incorporate isometrics to enhance range of motion, maybe at an end range, like the shortening end range and the maximum elongated end range are the same position, right? Maximum like shorten on one side of the axis is the same as maximum elongated on the other side of the axis. So if I'm looking at my little, little too deep, but straighten your arm. So if you straighten your arm as much as you can versus slightly bent, right? It's important to be stable all the way through.
Ted Ryce: Let's talk about it like this because, you know, you're showing me on video and it can be a bit hard to follow. And also this stuff, Brad, I feel like you're a little bit of the PhD organic chemistry professor I had in college who was just like "No, you take the hydrochloric, you know, whatever. And then you just put it like this and that's how you balance the equation." It's like, well, yeah, you've been doing it for so long. It's all you do.
So, let's talk about it like this. Let's say someone wanted to experiment with some isometric workout and you said doing it before their activity would help improve that activity. So if they wanted to lift weights or they were in a martial arts like me do jujitsu or, Thai boxing, which by the way, I use an isometric warmup now. How would you warm up for an hour long activity of some sort? And let's not, let's just keep it super general and principle-based instead of very specific with muscles and anatomical positions, like...
Brad Thorpe: What do you want to do, I mean if you want it to be really cheap and dirty, all you have to do is think like, almost like a global muscle contraction where you're just standing there and you squeeze your abs, squeeze your butt, squeeze your thighs, squeeze your hands, like dig your feet into the ground. And just try to like ramp up at maximum amount of muscle tension. Like somebody, you know, I don't like using this as an example, but like somebody is about to punch you in the stomach, is like let's create that level of tension! Or somebody is trying to push you off your current position and just create that level of tension within your structure. And if you did that basically, and we're talking cheap and dirty, if you did that like five times and you held that for 20 seconds, well breath in, don't hold your breath for the duration! What you'll find is like "Oh my God, I feel actually better, I feel tighter, firmer. Like I'm prepared now to go into that activity!
Now, because you said, okay, specific to jiu jitsu or Muay Thai, you might need a little bit more than that. You might need to do segmental positions and contractions. If you have a wall present or partner present, you could use them as a restraint. You know, like if you're both like, you know, the peel-off press. So you're both reached in front of you and you use the opposing arm of your future combatant to do trunk rotation type stuff?
So you can use many, many different sorts of things where it becomes, all you have to do is learn how to try to create movement into a restraint. It is the key that people need to understand. And the reason that I say that, and when we talk about overcoming versus yielding, if you're sitting there holding an object in space and you start to fatigue in a yielding environment, that becomes a higher risk. As opposed to, if you're doing a overcoming isometric and you're pushing into a movable object and you start to fatigue that will drop in real time, that amount of effort, right?
Making the load safer and allowing you to actually be able to sustain the contraction longer, recruiting greater muscle fiber, like different fiber types within the actual effort, which is once again, getting back to that complex side. But from an ease of contractility, replicate the movement where the punch is, like we would go back to Muay Thai.
Like, can you stand there on one foot and instead of holding your knee into your chest, can you block your knee from getting to your chest? Follow me there? Squeeze your butt cheek on the support leg. Mimic the punches, like, you know, from an elbow coming across, use your opposite hand to brace it, don't pull into it. So that would be another thing for like an elbow strike and like for Muay Thai and stuff like that. But that's the same for golf, it's the same for tennis.
If you're an office worker, if your back is starting to bug, you use the back of your chair and sit up tall and use the back of your chair to restrain, sitting up. Like, I mean, it's so simple. Yeah, I know. And it's like, Oh yeah. Guess what? That'll do. That'll work and strengthen the muscles of your back.
So if you're about to embark on an eight hour workday, why don't you just start in your chair, like you can use the arms of your chair, if you have arms, or the side of your desk, and think “I want to train my trunk!“ Or put your elbow on the desk and just, you know, side bend and drive that elbow down into the top of the desk, if obviously the height and stuff like that is right. And that's going to work aside. Do the other side, for the other side, hands together and crunch forward and you can train your core while sitting at your desk.
If you want to work your back muscles, sit up tall into the back of the chair as we just discussed. So really, really, really super simple solutions. Now, if you did that every hour for one minute, like just take like, not even one minute per exercise, if you just did one minute, like 15 seconds times front side, side back. So you're dedicating a minute. You know, you did that eight hours a day, so you're going to get eight minutes of isometrics.
So here's the cool thing. Science indicates six minutes of isometrics as the equivalent to 35 minutes of resistance training on selectorized equipment. So I just gave you a life hack to get 45 minutes of isometrics - it's actually 47 minutes of isometrics - while sitting at your desk, taking one minute every hour while getting paid to exercise. Now, you're like an occupational athlete because you're getting paid to exercise, you're a professional occupational athlete.
And what that's going to help do is it's going to help lower your blood pressure, is going to help increase your metabolism, and it's going to help reduce the risk of back and neck pain and shoulder pain and elbow pain while being at your desk.
So that's crazy. And that's all it takes. It's like, but that sounds too simple! It doesn't have to be a complex solution! And you know, the problem is actually quite simple. You're unstable, you're ill prepared. We gave you a way to become more stable and to prepare for the activity of not moving, because you're sitting at your desk, you're working isometrically. You just didn't train for it. You trained dynamically. And it's like, Oh, well, we know that, you know, via the said principle...
Ted Ryce: This is why you can deadlift a couple of hundred pounds, but your back hurts when you're doing the dishes?
Speaker 3: Exactly. It's crazy. And it is also a function of doing dishes, it just sucks! But for me, in my household, my wife, she's happy to cook. And she actually doesn't like doing the dishes. So she's like ”Oh, I'll cook, but you do the damn dishes!” And if I come into the kitchen, man, I screw this up so bad all the time!
I like doing the dishes in the morning, because when I'm done eating dinner, I don't want to run over the dishes. She hates going to a kitchen that's not prepared in the morning. And she's like ”Dude, this is ridiculous! You're 47 years old, do the damn dishes at night! You know what makes me happy, you know, what makes me miserable when I go to the kitchen in the morning!”
And somehow it still doesn't compute in my brain “dude, do the damn dishes before she'd go to bed!” Because she'll get up in the morning - and inevitably she's always up on the days that I get up to do them before she gets out of bed. Always, always the day she wakes up earlier is when I screwed up and didn't do it and she is like pissed, man. And I just cowered and fear.
Ted Ryce: Where's there a punchline about isometrics in that or... I'm totally kidding, man!
Brad Thorpe: So if I fight or flight, it comes freeze. That's that whole sort of turtle right under before she beats me senseless, you know, with love and care, of course.
Ted Ryce: Yeah. I know you post all the time about your family on social media. It's obvious you, you guys have a great relationship. And let me take a minute, by the way, to just talk about the other episodes that we did.
If you're enjoying this episode, you can go back to Brad Thorpe, episode 10 on www.legendarylifepodcast.com "How to get stronger, prevent injuries and improve sports performance with isometrics" and also number 329, "The secret weapon to lower blood pressure and prevent injuries with Brad Thorpe". Again, that's on a legendarylifepodcast.com. Or if you like to listen to this podcast on Apple.
We also have 420, but I'm pretty sure we put that one back up when I was, you know, going through some things with my dad. Cause we love Brad so much. We love his information so much.
And folks, this is truly game changing. I want you not to just listen to this episode, but try what Brad said about tensing up for 20 seconds, five times before you go and do something. You don't necessarily have to be on your way to do something, you can stand up at your desk and do that.
Or you could do some of the other things that Brad said today about, you know, working from your desk while Brad was explaining it, I was doing everything he was talking about. And you just did some exercise and you didn't have to sweat to do it or change your clothes or go to the gym. You did it right from your desk. And like Brad said, you're an occupational athlete.
Look, there are, I mean, look, people aren't talking about this stuff because they are mindset wise, education wise, they don't even know. You want a game-changing something or another? You want a true life hack? You want something that's a secret? This is what it is. Stop shining light on your balls and breathing in molecular hydrogen and all that other stuff! Stop freaking asking about intermittent fucking fasting and do some isometrics! It's just incredible!
And like you said, Brad, one of the ways, so arthritis is not a..., people will live their whole lives and not get arthritis, some do, what's the difference? Inflammation! And while so many people are like "What is the best anti-inflammatory diet?" Well, you don't need that. The one where you don't overeat is the answer to that, although there are some choices, food choices that can help, but it's the one where you don't overeat.
But if you're inflaming, you made a great point that if you're inflaming yourself with exercise, because after you get out, you're like "Yeah, that was a good workout!Oh, my neck hurts, my back hurts, my shoulder hurts, both my knees hurt, my hips hurt! But man, that was a good workout!" You're causing inflammation. And you gotta ask yourself, like I did, how long, how much longer can I keep this up?
And that's why I'm so grateful for you, Brad, because you showed me a different way. I'm feeling amazing. I'm stronger and in better shape and in less pain. Usually if you want to get a stronger and better shape that comes with I can't lift, I can't sleep on my left shoulder at night, but man, I look good with my shirt off! I can bench press a few hundred pounds.
Brad Thorpe: Yeah. And it's incredible. And you take that whole aesthetic goal. And this is kind of funny and it's not meant to be derogatory at all, but guys workout for other guys. Cause most women, honestly, don't give two shits about how they look once guys get in their fifties and sixties. I think they care that they're healthy, they care that they're not in pain, they care if they can do fun activities...
Ted Ryce: That's how with you and your wife is, I think, right?
Brad Thorpe: It's kind of like those things where, you know, I'll walk around, I'll flex and I'm still quite happy with how I look, you know, without clothes on and stuff like that. Do I look the same as when I was 18? No! But that's okay. I don't look bad at 47, by the standard. And it's, you look at stuff like that and it's like goals change with life.
And for myself it was, you know, as we discussed earlier, I just got tired of living in pain. And it was literally, I'm gonna do this for a month. It was a one month experiment. And I'm like, I woke up every day, you know, call it from three days in, pain-free. It wasn't like that first step in the morning going “Oh my foot!”. That sucks. And it's like, you know, that my sleeps were better!
And it's like, okay, well, what happens when you lie sideways? Most people sleep isometrically, you toss and turn a little bit, and yeah, your rib cage, you got to breathe and stuff.
But it was like, okay, what if I actually dedicate all of my time to this? And I just, I didn't go back to the world of dynamic exercise, because it's like, okay, well, for me, it's not that important, you know, can I do it? I own a gym, it's 11,000 square feet full of dynamic exercise equipment. So it's not that it's not important. We just throw in the isometrics before it.
But one of the things that you brought up about where do we learn this stuff? So you'll be happy to know this. And I know you've heard rumors of this in the past. So with COVID and everything like that, one of the transitions that I've made in my life is Isophit is now a media company. So we are rolling out an on demand and subscription-based service where we are creating the video content necessary to do and, you know, it's isometrics for jujitsu, isometrics for gardening, isometrics for back pain, isometrics for, you know, whatever activity is you guys love to do. We will have a channel dedicated to that activity. So we are going to become the global leaders in isometrics from a media perspective.
We've been long-standing, we've been there for exercise equipment, but now it's about media. It's about giving the consumer the necessary tools so they can make the positive difference in their life. And that we're basically just signing an agreement with our service provider, which will be Vimeo. So we're doing the over the top sort of training stuff. So we should have that up and coming, the documents signed this week. And then we're looking about sort of, they say ... what do you call it?
Basically three months before the app is developed, but from a programming perspective, we'll have stuff available for the consumer within about three weeks. And that gives you an understanding about how to exercise properly with isometrics. And it's not just going to be solely exercise videos. I believe in the science, I believe in bringing the science to the populace.
So we have a whole science series where we'll be jargon-free - and I know you're going to laugh at me, cause you know me in jargon - and I love it! But that's not about me. It's about the consumers, about why is blood pressure better related... Or why does isometrics help people lower blood pressure better than cardiovascular training, when all you've ever heard your whole life is that you need to do cardio to improve your heart?
Yeah. And it's like, well, like one of the things they forget to talk about is why the venous return side, like the, how the blood gets back to the heart is, you know, 99.2% controlled by a muscle function. It's 65% of your blood volume equation. So if I fixed 65%, because I made my muscles contract more efficiently I E through isometrics, it's going to have an almost immediate and drastic effect on the return flow of blood.
And it's going to cause better levels of compression, meaning the artery and the vein both get larger. So as I am going from a one lane highway to a four-lane highway, because you did isometrics. Pressure goes down, flow increases.
So we're going to discuss stuff like that on our science show, we're going to break down exercise mechanics. So I'm going to jump into that world of the dynamics. I'm going to show you how to do squats from an isometric perspective, throw a whole range. We have a series for weekend warriors who, you know, they do nothing and then on the weekend they go get injured because they love an activity. Because it's stress... Like, it's this thing it's like, well, we're going to help you prepare for all that stuff.
And then we're going to talk about health conditions and how you avoid things like osteoarthritis, osteoporosis. Recent research is indicating that isometrics helps prevent Alzheimer's. It's like, damn! That's a bold statement! That's not coming from me, that's coming from the Journal of Neurology, which was the world's leading medical paper or journal for neurology. So I was like, okay, cool! Let me bring that to you guys! All for $54 a month. And is so crazy!
Ted Ryce: I'm against fitness and diet cults, but this one, this is like, this is the frontier. It's not a cult, folks! That's just a joke, but this is the frontier of something that is literally going to change the way you feel, look, perform. I love it, Brad!
Let's wrap things up! I feel like we've given people so much to think about now. It's like, go do something with it! Where can they sign in? Now, by the time this comes out, it'll be probably four weeks later. Wha is the website? Where's the place that someone listening right now can go and sign up for this?
Brad Thorpe: So it's going to be housed on our www.isophitmsk.ca Cause the website it's a Canadian site. So for all my American people out there, looking at those prices, you guys get cheaper by like, I think current, I think it's 23% off, because you're American. This is all Canadian pricing. So we usually get sticker shock from Americans looking at the pricing and they go "Oh my God, it looks so expensive!" It's like, it's actually not that price. It's actually 27%, 25% cheaper. But I live in Canada, so I might as well support my own peeps in my own currency.
So yeah, so isophitmsk.ca. Is not dor com, it's dot ca. So it would be mindful of that. And you'll be able to sort of sign up for your subscription. Obviously we got our Isophit M.S.K. product as well. You know, you guys can buy that, fully stocked. We love the idea of being fully stocked and selling the product when we actually have ii.
So, if we sell out, we usually put a disclaimer there saying, "Hey, we were a couple of weeks away from having the product". But if it's ..., like you bought today, Ted, I'd ship it tomorrow. So it's pretty remarkable.
Ted Ryce: I want to go buy a place just so I can have an Isophit M.S.K. That may sound like hyperbole and it is a little bit, but it is one of the reasons like I want to have this, I want to have this thing so I can do this. And I don't, you don't need the home gym and the, all the contraptions, all this stuff. And unless you want it, of course, and you're having fun and it isn't jacking up your body, but go to isophitmsk.ca. If you're interested in the Isophit M.S.K, you can buy it there and remember is Canadian dollars. Or if you're interested in signing up for Brad's monthly subscription. Look, do it! Go, go try this stuff, folks! It’s the secret of longevity. It's a game changer.
You know, I never, I never talk about things as game-changing, because most of it is just, it's not! It's procrastination, it's like do the freaking principles and shut up about this, the shiny new thing! But this isn't shiny and new! It's a very old concept that's been evolved by Brad. He's just a guy that you should learn from if you want to stay amazing.
So, Brad, with that said, thanks so much for coming back on, man! Always love our talks, always have such a great time and I always learn something new. And there's not that many people I can say that about in health and fitness, it's usually about, I learned marketing from health and fitness people. I hardly ever have health and fitness people on, I do my own episodes now, no interest, unless we're having a nice conversation on optimal health exercise or something. But you man, you're, you're another level!
So thank you so much for being you, for fighting the good fight, for getting this information out and not giving up on us, knuckleheads, who've taken so long to wrap our heads around this isometric stuff.
Brad Thorpe: Dude, I appreciate everything! And, you know, shout out to you and all your support that you've given me over the years, I do appreciate it! And you know, I look forward to this and many more podcasts, my friend!
Ted Ryce: 100%! Brad, thanks so much! Talk to you soon, brother!
Brad Thorpe: Later, buddy. Cheers!
Ted Ryce: That wraps up another episode of the Legendary Life podcast. And I want to ask you how amazing was that conversation? Well, I don't know if you thought the conversation was amazing, but you learned a lot! You learned a different perspective, perhaps even had your perspective about exercise challenged. That's a good thing!
And I want to tell you something. I've been in this business..., like Brad was saying, he's been in this business forever, went to college on a volleyball scholarship. Brad and I both love movement, but we've just made the choice to kind of, at least Brad's a hundred percent on isometrics, I still do some dynamic stuff, cause I'm not as knowledgeable about Brad.
Maybe, maybe I will just give it up altogether eventually, who knows, except, you know, of course the, like I'm not going to stop walking or, you know, having sex, comes to mind or, you know, some of the other things I do, taking hikes and swimming. But most of the other things are going to be isometrics and I'm really enjoying them!
But I want to ask you what is something that you can go do right now and experiment with these isometrics? Because I don't want you to, I don't want you to just listen to and go "Yeah, isometrics is interesting, yeah! Okay, all right. What's the next podcast episode?" No, go take action! One of the keys to success in life is learning new things and then taking action on them.
And that, that period of time between when you learn something new and go take action on it, it's called “speed of implementation. At least that's the way I learned that actually from a business mentor, a “speed of implementation” When someone tells you to go do something, how long does it take you to go put that into action?
And that's what I want to challenge you with right now. Go try some of these isometrics! If you want, if you need a little bit more visual representation, go to Brad's website, you know, check out some of the exercises, then go replicate some of it, go try doing some of what Brad talked about! Go put this into action! All right?
So I hope you enjoy today and I want to talk to you a little about Friday. I'm going to share with you a story about how I almost had cancer. Yeah! Me! I almost had cancer! Crazy! I know. But that is the story and that's what I'm going to share with you.
And again, thanks so much for listening to this episode. If you haven't subscribed yet, I highly recommend that you do, that way every time one of our episodes goes live, you'll be the first to know.
And that's all I've got! So stay tuned for Friday! It's an interesting one and a very personal one, but it's a conversation that your doctor isn't having with you, or at least not in the way... Your doctor may not be having with you.
So that is it for me! Have an amazing week, try out some news isometrics and I'll speak to you on Friday!
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