By Paul Winter
It’s a no-brainer that being strong is a good thing.
There is quite literally nothing that can be brought to mind that being strong is a hindrance to, and an endless list of things that being physically powerful makes easier.
Just ask your wife next time she needs the pickle jar open.
However, simple physical strength or conditioning of the kind that we train at a high level here at Iron Legion is just one piece of the puzzle of human evolution.
Sure, you’re strong…
But the obvious question is: for what?
Unless you plan to make a living at the pickle jar thing, or are a professional athlete, we eventually have to look at the fact that spending a large amount of our time and calorie intake on getting stronger day after day to just…be stronger-
Becomes something of a waste of resources.
You are one of those enlightened individuals who understands that physical strength provides a base of athletic ability that makes up the first of a system of three interlocking triangles.
Those of you interested in the Viking era may recognize the above symbol as the “Valknut,” a modern name given to a symbol used in some Scandinavian art pieces depicting Odin, god of warfare and magic.
Most interpretations of this symbol are pretty fanciful, but Odin was popularly associated with the power to bind things and unbind them – for our purposes, we are looking at the symbol from this perspective.
In order to live our lives in a way that makes sense, we need to structure things as a system – that is, many different interlinked parts that work together to form an effective whole.
If each aspect of our life isn’t harmonious with the rest, things tend to fall apart pretty quickly.
Because of this, we have to think of our various pursuits as bound together in a cohesive structure that works to elevate us and allows us to perform at a high level of human evolution.
When it comes to that performance on a strictly physical level, this triangulate structure refers to the primitive human abilities of strength and combat.
Imagine the first triangle as strength and physical conditioning:
These are the necessary elements of primal skills like running, jumping, lifting, climbing, carrying and so on.
Training for strength and conditioning provides the human with the power, dexterity and stability- as well as the willpower- needed to undergo physical hardships that would break another human being.
The second triangle is the next step in what that strength informs: fighting.
The ability to defend oneself unarmed relies on building the specialized skills of grappling and striking. Someone who is very strong, and has excellent conditioning will still be totally outmatched by someone who is perhaps less strong but much more technically proficient.
Third, we have the next stage of mankind’s evolution into a creature of deadly purpose and dangerous ability – that of technical proficiency with weaponry.
These days usually referred to as “tactical” skills, this also covers things like bladed combat, hunting, distance accuracy with bow, pistol, and carbine- as well as the mental acuity to strategize and plan out the application of these skills on a wider scale as it pertains to feeding and defending a community.
So far at Iron Legion, we provide two of these triangles…but the next step is quickly coming down the pipeline.
When it does, will you be ready to answer the question: