There’s just nothing quite like destroying perfectly good items in your own two hands. It’s a lot of fun, builds tremendous power, and can impress others.
Today, I want to take you a little deeper into the world of oldtime strongmen.
Did you know that one item is not equal to another even though they may look the same?
The 60D (pronounced 60-penny) nail is the standard among strongmen for short bending. But not all 60D nails are created the same.
At a recent workshop we were teaching the attendees how to bend. I had just purchased a new box of 60D nails. And a good number of attendees were able to destroy these with either ease or a lot of effort.
But as far as 60D nails are concerned this was a batch of some of the easiest 60D nails I had ever come across. The ones I had at home (that had collected a bit of rust) were probably about 30% harder.
And Bud Jeffries happened to have on hand a 60D nail that is equal in difficulty to a Grade 8 Bolt. That’s a huge jump.
(As a related side note: Did you know that many weight plates may be off up to several pounds in either direction? Unless you have calibrated weights then what they say may not be completely accurate. So while this may not be as drastic in weights it can still happen there too.)
My next example is cards. I’ve been working lately on my card tearing to make it even stronger.
I knew the cards I had been working with were strong, but I didn’t know just how strong they were until recently.
In working the progressions I was up to about 40 cards tearing fairly easily on these decks.
Then I’m over at Chuck Halbakken’s gym and tearing a bunch of cards. (We probably went through 100 decks that day).
The cards he had were a bit easier then mine. Enough so that I was able to do about twice as many. This video here shows my first attempt ever at a deck and a half.
I also hit some other PR’s that day. A deck behind the back and a deck torn vertically (which is ridiculously hard – all the more props to Chuck as that’s his preferred way to do it).
The gold standard among card tearing is usually using Bicycle decks. I was able to go through that easily too.
So it turns out I’ve been working on some of the hardest decks out there. And there is something to be said for working the hard way so that when you need to perform or do other things its much easier.
As you get more experienced you’ll be able to tell the difference just by looking and feeling items. And in the end you should be able to destroy them all.