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This research has changed everything – Bret Contreras

Categories: Videos & podcasts

Chapters

00:00:00 Hip thrusts vs Squats study

00:06:05 Is there a wrong way of executing an exercise?

00:10:49 Did the study favor hip thrusts?

00:22:25 Measuring methods

00:32:01 Practical observations vs theory

00:36:41 Influence of menstrual cycle on strength

00:41:02 How to get people to like training

00:45:27 Adapting the training methods to research – is hip dip a problem?

00:53:01 Separating upper and lower glutes?

00:59:27 EMG

01:01:14 The sum of research on training glutes

01:09:14 Final thoughts

Transcript

So we recently conducted a study on squats versus hip thrusts, finding that squats and hip thrusts in untrained individuals are equally effective for glute hypertrophy. Was this an unexpected finding for you? Yeah, I thought hip thrusts were going to slaughter squats. So this is… Most of the people in the industry thought squats were going to slaughter hip thrusts and they tied. So one critique, let’s start with that is that we or you chose the subjects of the study specifically to make the study look better for hip thrusts because we recruited people that couldn’t squat. What do you think about this? It’s a valid concern. No, no, it’s not about first of all, you and I had nothing to do. So we funded the study. And for Menno’s listeners, I want to give Menno a shout out here because when you contacted me, you’re like, Brett, let’s get this done. And I had gotten a quote and it was going to be 80 grand. And I was reluctant to tell you because I was like, This is going to be so much money. Who’s going to donate 40,000 of their own dollars? And you didn’t bat an eyelash. You’re like, okay, I’ll split it with you. Let’s do it. So we funded the study, but we had we had some input with how the study was planned. Not much, though, is kind of, you know, Daniel and Mike planning most of it, but we didn’t. We had nothing to do with. But, you know, the training, the data collection, the analysis, nothing. So but first of all, so first of all, we didn’t have anything to do with that. We didn’t select the subjects, we didn’t handpick them. And second of all, it’s wrong. It’s also wrong. There were only like three of the subjects that couldn’t squat. deep. Interestingly, one of them, because Daniel showed the silhouette of one of them what was he six foot eight, and he had the worst squatting proportions I’ve ever seen. He was like doing a quarter squat. But interestingly, that guy grew his glutes well. Well, his glutes grew well, doing like quarter squats, but, but most of the subjects could squat deeper than parallel. And, you know, it’s it’s so one. One critique was that our subjects didn’t squat deep and they did. But another critique from the same group of people was that Brett planned out the study to give the hip thrusts a like an advantage because squats take you a while to get coordinated at and around the exact duration of the study is when you’d finally start getting gains that were more than neural. And it’s funny because when people have confirmation bias or when they’re looking for something, they they tend to be really good at critiquing studies when they contradict what they want to see. And yeah, if if squats were to came out ahead, people wouldn’t have had that critique.

In fact, I don’t mean to I don’t want to start a war here. But you can look at you can look at a like Kassem coach Kassem And I remember he recorded a podcast on the ? study that we now know is fake. But he before we knew it was fake, I always knew it was fake, but before it came out that it was fake, they had criticisms of that study. They basically went over that study and they didn’t say any of the stuff that they said with our study. They were like, Squats aren’t a good glute exercise. Like basically like, I don’t know what they think lunge is or like single leg press would be better. But with squats, it’s the quads that fail first, not the glutes. So it’s not a good exercise and stuff like that. They didn’t mention that when squats came out ahead. So that’s human nature. We’re all like that. And it’s important to know that. And I wasn’t meaning to bash Kassem here because he’s a very analytical guy and no one will sit there and think about things more than more than him. But we’re all the same way. When something doesn’t match what we expect, we really scrutinize it and so it was interesting to see how that study was received by the industry because I feel like I’m the only guy who came out and said I was wrong. I didn’t hear one other male in the industry say I was wrong. You know, I feel like how like 90% of the males in the industry should say should have made a post like, Wow, guys, I was wrong. I’ve always said hip thrusts suck and here they tied squats. I would have thought squats would have beat hip thrusts, but I’m the only one who said that. I said I was wrong. I thought hip thrusts were going to win and they tied, but it didn’t fit my confirmation bias, I felt like, or it didn’t fit what I predicted. So so I kind of think that it’s just something in beginners. And if you have more advanced, they’d see better results doing hip thrusts, especially given that we had to match with equate volume. I feel like people talk about all this study on long lengths versus short lengths, but this opens up another debate. Stuff that works via a shorter lengths doesn’t get you as sore, and it depends on the muscle and the movement, because some muscles don’t ever really get real sore, you know, do your delts ever get that sore, you know, it’s like. Yeah, never. But so some muscles that don’t get too sore, it’s like no big deal. But once most of the do get sore though, those if you train a short length, you could do them every day or like every other day for glutes. I know you could do hip thrusts, but my my girls could do hip plus every day. They could do them five days a week. They don’t get beat up from them at all. I get beat up from them. I’d like to tie in to that because there is a prevailing belief or a more popular belief right now that all exercises are exactly equally injurious and there is no such thing as a wrong way to do an exercise. But swaying during the squats is perfectly fine. Knee valgus perfectly fine. And some people take this to extremes, literally saying that’s well, all exercises are literally equals is all just about volume management and the body can adapt to anything. What do you think about this? Do you think that because you said, well, hip thrust may be tolerated better?

So they would say, well, actually it’s all just a matter of volume. I mean, that’s only something that came up more recently from people who sit at their computers. I mean, if you work in a gym, you know, my I remember having this debate with Stu McGill back in the in the 2000s, like maybe the 2000, like ten ish era. I was like, Stu, people don’t hurt themselves doing crunches. You know that when you live in a gym like you’re here. This is where I live. I’m here. I’m here more hours than I’m at my home. And you know that crunches never hurt anyone. And of course, there’s going to be the one lesson of this. Like I hurt myself doing crunches, but I have never seen anyone in my whole life hurt themselves doing crunches, have you? no, it’s like when back extensions because Stu Stu me go back and they said back extensions are injurious. And I’m like, I’ve never seen anyone hurt themselves doing back extensions if they hyperextend, then they can get some back pain, but not like an injury. And so when you’re in a gym all day long, you learn which exercises hurt people. Like what Exercises Cause injuries. It’s always squats and deadlifts and for Bro’s, it’s like bench press, military, maybe like bent over rows, maybe like it’s the those are the most popular exercises, weighted dips, like things like that. It’s never these machines very rarely hurt people plate loaded things and single well single joint stuff. They don’t cause outright injuries. They can cause more chronic issues like if you are always heaving heavy dumbbells for lateral raises and and doing like heavy, you know, like pullovers and flies feel like you got to be stricter with lighter weight with those. If you always try for progressive overload, you tend to get your elbows get beat up and things like that, but they don’t cause like actual a lot of muscle strains and like where you see someone, you know, deadlifts, you’ll see someone, they hurt their low back all the time, you know, mostly low backs, but squats people’s hips start hurting, knees low back, you name it. So I don’t agree with that at all. I vehemently disagree that all exercises are are. But but I also like the balance because it used to be remember when it used to be like if you round your back, you’re like back back when I used to show some back rounding in 2010, people would call me the worst trainer in the world. And now the pendulum swung the other way and now it’s like, you can. The industry is kind of saying you can gradually build up to anything you can do Jefferson curls and you know, and your spine can adapt and you can strengthen the soft tissue to the point where you can tolerate anything, which I don’t quite agree with. But I do like the balance. I don’t I hate it when especially when the postural police, like you do a crunch and people are like, you’re going to stay in kyphosis. And I’m like, that’s not the way it works. Yeah. I think also there is a balance there where on one end anecdotal evidence certainly suggests that certain exercises evoke a lot more injuries than others. And with squatting also, it’s certainly my experience that people with back pain generally have less pain when they squat with what we consider good form, with more neutral. sure.

Pelvic alignment. So another thing to mention is people get injured more with the exercise they care about more. It’s like no one cares about their safety. No one cares about their seat… No, it’s the intensity control effort because, you know, like you’re not going to injure yourself doing s.. Well, I’ve hurt myself doing seated rows when my back is when my back is hurting. But like, you don’t care about your seated rows strength as much as you do your bench press. So if if something feels off, you’re just I’m just not going to do seated rows today. But how many times is something feel off and you’re you still you you do your warm ups with bench and you’re like I feel a little strained right here, my front delts or my what Something’s feeling off, but you push it anyway because you care so much about your bench Press strength. circling back a bit to the squats vs hip thrusts study. So one perspective is that the study favored hip thrusts because they were beginners. However, another perspective, which is I think popularized mostly by Chris Beardsley, is that actually in beginners you should see maximal stretch mediated hypertrophy because you’re supposed to get lengthening of the muscle fascicles, and that’s presumably limited because a muscle can only get so long. And therefore in beginners we see mostly stretch mediated hypertrophy, but in advanced individuals we should expect to see less. And indeed most studies at the moment are on trained individuals.

So how much credence would you give to the stretch mediated hypertrophy phenomenon being just relevant for beginners? So this is something I ask Paul, because Paul and Chris have their podcasts. And first of all, I’m a big fan of Chris. Like Chris and I used to have a research review together and it’s been interesting to see him come out of his shell more where he used to just report the research and then he’s now he’s, he’s really gone out on a limb and made bold predictions like you and him were some of the first people that were like, no, there’s not three mechanisms of hypertrophy. There’s one, like It’s just tension, which I still don’t claim to know the answer to. I still, you know, you and I look at studies and there’s so many physiology studies that are just so I mean, I can tell you these papers that I download and I have no clue. I read them, I send them to Brad. There’s so many anabolic chemicals in the body, like so many pathways like SMAD three or something. They have these crazy names and I feel like every month there’s a new crazy term, these pathways that are just that. And I don’t I’m more of a physics biomechanics person, more mathematical. I don’t my strength is not physiology, although I like reading it. So I do think that metabolic stress and muscle damage, there could be some way that it benefits. But you guys were, he and you and I think you guys were some of the first two to say regardless of whether those contribute it is mostly mechanical tension. You were very right in saying that and Chris then has gone out and said some more really bold claims with his neuro mechanical matching stuff with the stretch mediated hypertrophy stuff. And what I’m I guess it’s kind of like a terminology issue right now. They will say stretch medial hypertrophy only means Sarcomere Genesis like sarcomeres in series and I think the industry uses it as a term to kind of say it’s not just sarcomere genesis, it’s just that you get greater growth working a muscle in the stretch and it could also be sarcomeres in parallel, you know, it could be myofibrillar Genesis or whatever. Like, I don’t know. What do you think.

That has been measured, Yeah, that’s the muscle Also gets thicker. Yep. And we also see that the muscle also gets stronger at shorter lengths, which would also not be in line with the muscle just becoming longer. So I think and in animal models, we see it very convincingly that the muscle really gets thicker, like a lot thicker. So I think the stretch mediated hypertrophy phenomenon, this is real. Yeah. And probably one of the biggest revolutions of the last like maybe decade in exercise science. That said, it is still a big limitation regardless of whether it’s just Sarcomere genesis that we have very limited research in trained individuals. And well. Because half of me I know I’m biased because I’ve been saying hip thrusts are the best thing. I mean, I invented the hip thrust, so I’m going to say they’re the best thing since sliced bread. I’m super biased. I try to not be biased, but I am I can’t possibly not be biased. And so I’ve been telling people, work the glutes at short muscle length for so long that I look at the long length research and I’m like, I’m like I said, with Kassem being critical of short length stuff, I’m critical of long length stuff. So. So why would the glutes benefit from short length stuff particularly? Well, we can talk about neuro mechanical matching in a second, but what I wanted to say before that is I look at all the bodybuilders and I’m like, they’ve always done all the exercises. Like, if you are going to work your pecs, would you just do all wouldn’t you throw in a pec deck for the squeeze? If you’re doing biceps, yes, do a few do too movements that work you in a stretch, but throw in a concentration curl at the end. So it’s like. But I don’t think there is much evidence on including short, short length stuff. We don’t have much research on it, but that’s what the bodybuilders have always done. So you’re saying the bodybuilders were doing things sub optimally this whole time? They could have had, you know, greater possible. It is very possible or it’s possible that like what Chris and Paul like to say, that it tapers off over time and then you’re just getting and then the short length stuff provides just as much value as the long length. For the glutes.

Specifically, there is extra reason to think that they benefit from short lengths. And that would be the neuro mechanical matching theory. Basically, the nervous system is going to realize the leverage that a muscle has or a subdivision of a muscle and it’s going to deliver more juice to that muscle according to its leverage. For example, if you’re deep down into, you know, in deep hip flexion, maybe it makes more sense to activate the adductor magnus more than the hamstrings because the hamstrings are A at a short muscle length and they don’t have the best leverage. Whereas as you come up into full hip extension, maybe, you know, the CNS says, look, it makes more sense to activate the gluteus maximus because it has the best internal moment arm or the best leverage at that range of motion. And I think that’s very plausible. It makes sense.

But I know they mentioned that there’s a lot of evidence and in fact, Chris just made a post on this, but I think I know he mentions activation and like where a muscle activates the highest. So there is a lot of research on that. But our study showed that EMG activity didn’t predict hypertrophy. I don’t think it’s worthless, but I think it’s it doesn’t take into account the stretch but and as Andrew Vygotsky has pointed out, EMG surface EMG in particular doesn’t take into account the architecture of the muscle. And so when you have like heavily penetrated muscle, you can get over estimations in EMG in basically the like the neural drive to the muscle so it doesn’t quite match. So anyway, that is one theory, and I remember long before I ever know I never heard of this neural mechanical matching. That’s something I heard from Chris and I’m like, it has a name. And I think I think he got that from respiratory muscle research. Yeah, it originated somewhere else. Not an exercise with respiratory muscle research. So I was postulating that with my my first year Ph.D. proposal. I remember my my reviewer was Justin Keogh. He’s a researcher and strongman, and he likes to look at strongman training. And he he questioned me on that. And I said and I mentioned the ? study. We always reference from way back in the day showing that the gluteus maximus has the out of the all the hip extensions. It has the best leverage in full hip extension. And I said in my proposal like this like it makes more sense that the brain would activate this or the whatever the nervous system would activate this muscle. The best in this position because it has the best leverage and. It’s not just moment arm either, It’s also probably at least the length tension relationship that’s favorable. Right. So based on. It would be the. Yeah, it would be I mean, theoretically your brain would take into account the torque potential. Theoretically, your brain would consider both because torque would be leverage times force perpendicular force, and your force production would have to do with the size of the muscle and then also the length tension relationship, the basically the sarcomere length and the I don’t know if we have research on the gluteus maximus sarcomere length, and I used to think, opensim, this is a biomechanical software. I went by that and then long story, but there’s two different open sim models that do musculoskeletal modeling and they give totally different values and you realize it’s research is just making guesses on how to fit. You have to make a lot of assumptions. So then I don’t trust that I don’t trust EMG, but people tend to rely on different things to make predictions in our industry. They will look at, you got guys who care a lot about EMG and guys who say it’s worthless, guys who care a lot about, you know, functional anatomy. But there are things functional anatomy can’t predict either. You know what I mean? You know, things don’t always .. That’s why we need longitudinal studies. Yeah, but it’s always going to be the wild, wild West in our industry because longitudes are so far and few between.

Because, like, you’re you’re in my who who in this industry has donated 40 grand of their own money like we did to fund the study. You have to say it wasn’t all 40k of my own. I’ve done it more with all the other studies combined. But for this particular study it was also other donation money. Just to be precise. Was it your personal, your research institute? Yeah, the research Institute also had donation money. That’s pretty much gone now. But but my point is, you could use that for anything. Buy a nice car. You could have bought a nice car with it. Who does that? And so, like, there’s also kind of a gap in between what the Internet argues about what you and I care about muscle hypertrophy. We’re bodybuilding, you know, like bros. We’re bros, we’re scientific bros. But the professors don’t always care about the same stuff we do. They’re not always going to carry out. You know, a lot of times they’re looking at and also it depends what tools they have. It’s like I remember when vibration platforms were popular, there was all this research on whole body vibration. And if you have a force plate, you want to use it all the time if you have. So it’s like we the reason why our study was so expensive is because we had to use MRI, because that’s the gold standard for hypertrophy, but especially for the glutes. I would trust ultrasound for bicep or like, you know, quads, hamstrings.

But with glutes, ultrasound is tricky because you’re just looking at a muscle layer underneath. There’s no bone, it’s fascia. And you know, I use that for my Ph.D. and I’m like, I don’t I don’t fully trust ultrasound. I don’t know. I know some studies have come out using ultrasound. I don’t trust it. I think, yeah I have heard it before. I’m not an expert on the ultrasound measurements, but I’ve heard it before from people that are experts in it. They say it’s very difficult at the minimum. I mean, I remember I looked at like I experiment with like five subjects. This was ten years ago. But yeah, one of the subjects was my girlfriend at the time, and I’m like, I can’t see the fascia layer. I’m adjusting the gain and the depth and I’m like, I don’t like this. I like I like things like broad jump where you see the starting line, you see where you land and you mark the distance. Then you measure that and there’s no getting that wrong, you know. So speaking of EMG, because that’s also what we measured. And by the way, of some other tidbits about neuromechanical matching, I think one big limitation of the theory that we still have is that when you go to failure, all of that stuff might go out the window like the body recruits preferentially the muscle fibers with the best leverage or the best torque potential. But then when you go to failure, it’s a all hands on deck. So it might not matter anymore that. Yeah, when you max out or when you go to failure why wouldn’t why wouldn’t you activate everything. But then the actual tension produced internally by the muscle that should still matter because that’s hard mechanical tension. So you would think that hip cross beat squats on that regard. And in EMG research we see that hip thrusts clearly win.

And we also it’s hard in subjective muscle tension like people feel the glutes more, but still they they are saying they seem to be equal. So there must be something else stretch mediated hypertrophy, maybe passive mechanical tension that makes squats compensate for the lower active tension, which is, I think, almost certain with versus hip thrusts. That’s interesting because there has to be some balance there. And that might also mean that in the end, but I think we’ve both been saying it in the long term. You want both because, yes, you get stretch mediated hypertrophy and based on the current research stretch mediated hypertrophy seems to be like much bigger than we thought. But hip thrust win out in the other regard and might be easier to recover from. So in the end, you’re probably better off with a combination, if not purely for muscle hypertrophy, then at least in practice, for recovery and not getting hip injuries and the like. You know, it’s funny because I feel like, you know, I’m in here training women all day long. I remember one of the camps this this guy was he goes, hack squats are the best exercise for your glutes. hack squats. Right. And the people with the best glute develop are always doing hack squats. And I’m like, what the hell, hack squats? I feel I guess the girls like them if they put their feet forward, I don’t feel them in my glutes at all. Even if I put my feet forward. I do hack squat for quads. In fact, I feel so much quads I almost can’t do hack squats all the time because they work too well. They hurt my knees, they hit my quads so freaking hard. It’s almost like I can’t. I can only do like one set to true failure because those are the thing ones where you can do breathing, ones where you’re like, you know, I’ve done like and it depends on the hack squat machine, the angle of it, because the steep ones are a lot harder. But I’ve, you know, I’ve had times where the machines were at six plates per side I end up getting ten reps, but most people would quit at five and I ended up getting ten by breathing and just keep pushing myself and then I can be sore from that one set for like five days, you know?

But anyway, dudes tend to like, especially dudes who are popular on the internet. They look at other dudes who are on steroids and then they’ll be like, just train like Ronnie Coleman. He had huge glutes. And yes, if you do steroids and you just train your legs, you just do squats and lunges and stiff leg deadlifts, you’re probably going to have decent glutes. But women, a lot of women have been doing that. That’s what they did. For example, I have this client, Yarishna, she’s a wellness competitor. She’s an Olympian, and she has these huge legs and they’ve been telling her, you need bigger glutes. So when she came to me, I’m like, Yarishna, your legs are insane. You should stop training legs because we cannot, we can get those big one when we need We can start doing squats and leg press and all the quad movements and all the hamstring movements, but you need to bring your glutes up. Quit doing legs, just do hip thrusts. And all these machines I have here, I showed them all to you. I’ve got all these plate loaded abduction and kick back and hip thrust machines do these three times a week for like a year. And. And I go and quit going to these other trainers. She’s, you know, here in Miami there’s a lot of Brazilian influence and you’ve seen these Brazilian coaches that kill you. They’ll do like dropsets to where you’re trembling on the ground. And I quit going to these other trainers that like, want to destroy you because then you can you can’t. If I want you to train glutes three times a week, you can’t do too much. A lot of times Yarishna do two sets, two hard sets of each exercise. We’ll do four or five exercises. So she’s doing ten working sets three times a week. So she’s doing like, you know, say 30, 30 to 40 sets a week.

That’s not easy to do. You can’t have these crazy drop sets, you know, and and you can’t have five sets per exercise to failure. So anyway, I told her to do that and her glutes have, and same with her friend Babi. You know, my client, Babi Manu, her glutes have skyrocketed. But it’s funny because then I have Amanda and Vika They’ve been injury like basically squats and deadlifts have been beating them up lately and they’re not doing crazy volume on them. They just been in a rut. So I said, let’s take a break. Like, let’s take the emphasis off squats and deadlifts and let’s start focusing on hip thrusts and kickbacks and let’s start focusing on glutes for a while. And their glutes are growing like fast. Like everyone’s like, what’s what’s going on? Your glutes are growing huge. So I feel like there’s what the industries of scientific people say, which is ironic because they’re supposed to be scientific. And then there’s what I see in here.

And I will tell you, I don’t know if I’m if I’m trying to maximize a woman’s glute size, because you also have to consider like, yeah, most women don’t want giant legs. We do. Menno, you and I want every muscle to be bigger. If you are like, Do you want your traps to be disgustingly huge, we’d be like, Yes, you want you know, I would. I love the way I look when I’m pumped up, like when I do delts If I could just look that way, I would give my house for that. Like if I could just look that way permanently because I like the way it looks pumped up so much. But women don’t want giant legs. So you see some of these guys that are like like Mike Israetel released A video on YouTube is like, that’s the scientific way to grow the glutes. And, and it was like all stretch position movements. It was like and he also worked this these clients so hard like, that’s not the way you train people and like that’s that’s what you do when you get someone to who comes to you. That’s what I told Yarishna do not go to that person. Quit going to that trainer that wants to impress you. Quit going to that trainer that wants to cripple you because you know the typical clients like, my God, I was sore for a week. You’re amazing. And if that happens to me, I go, No, I screwed you. I should have not pushed you too hard because I want you to train glutes three times a week. And I know there’s the research on frequency, but I’m telling you, in practice, the girls grow their glutes the best, hitting it three times a week and doing of, like, short, short and long position stuff. But I don’t know. I don’t think, like Mike, Mike’s workout was like, you know, sumo squats and then like deadlifts or good mornings and then like, I think he did like two types of deadlifts and then lunges like lunges to failure and then like deep leg press. No abduction, no kick, no short position, no hip thrust, no kickbacks, no abduction, nothing for the upper glutes. And this would leave my girls sore for like a week. And I don’t think that’s the right way to train people in the long run. I think that’s what you do when you’re trying to impress people, to think you’re a good trainer.

But that’s not what you do when you’re a real trainer. When you’re a real trainer and you actually work with. I work with 30 girls in here every week, week in, week out. I have 30 girls in San Diego that I work with too, and I’m back and forth between San Diego and here. So when you work with 60 different people and you’re observing and you’re tweaking, you don’t want to kill them too much, you don’t. Yeah. So in this sense, you put a decent amount of stock into your practical observations versus just. Absolutely. Scientific ones. How do you feel about how much a person feels a muscle when they’re exercising? Is that important? Because you said, for example, Delts, they never get sore. Some people said they never feel them. Does that mean they, they’re not training them well? so I know where you’re going with this because of our hip thrust study in our hip thrust study, everyone felt their glutes more during hip thrusts.

Daniel asked every subject, Where do you feel your glutes the most during squats or hip thrusts, every subject said hip thrusts and they tied in muscle growth. So it wasn’t the exercise they felt working the most and I think that’s important for people to know. So I use both like when I’m training. So when they go I, when I go heavy with hip thrusts, I don’t feel my glutes anymore. I go, It doesn’t mean that they’re not working. Or if they’re like, I don’t like doing squats or I feel RDLs on my hamstrings or I feel squats on my quads. It doesn’t mean it’s not work, you know, it could be stretching the glutes under load and you might not feel it till the next day. Like lunges especially, you don’t typically feel necessarily feel lunges being the limiting factor, but you tend to feel in the next day or two days later, even more. But how much do you adjust the program based on the client’s individual feedback of what they feel? I am. So when you’re an online trainer or like in real life, you you take that income big time in here, I’m adjusting everything to their individual preference. But that doesn’t mean and the reason why is because I can find a squat that they like and that they feel. But that’s why my job is easier, because I’m an actual trainer. I’ve got all these two. I got this giant gym with all the bells and whistles online.

You prescribe someone squats and they go, I don’t feel squats where you can’t tweak things. You can’t say, Well, let’s try this lever machine squat we have, let’s try this tweak, let’s try box squats. Let’s try. You know, I can try everything. I can go, Let’s try low bar, let’s try box squats. Let’s try putting a band, Let’s try Smith Machine and putting bands on them. Let’s try Sumo stance, let’s try this. I can tinker with everything. I’ve got my t bell there. Right there. I can say let it stand on the blocks and see if you feel them this way. But even if they don’t feel them, I try to say you got to do some exercises like our formula in here is do a type of hip thrust, you know, do just do something that works the quads and glutes. So it’s going to look like a squat. Either one or two legs do a hip hinge, something for the hammies and glutes, you know, something that keeps your legs more straight and then do some abduction and kickbacks at the end. And we do two types of abduction now. We do frontal plane and horizontal transverse plane. But because we train every other day, one quad day, I want them doing something more quad dominant, something for the quads, that’s more quad, like a hack squat or the pendulum squat or the leg press. And then the next quad exercise, the next the next training session. I want them doing something more glute dominant for the quads, a leaning step up, a walking lunge, something that makes the glutes more sore. So we alternate between quad dominance. We don’t always do hinges every single time for hamstrings, because if you did deadlifts and good morning three times a week, it’s too much. So it could be a deadlift one day, it could be a 45 degree hyper, which doesn’t beat you up quite as much banded or dumbbell. Or it could be knee flexion. So they can also choose a knee flexion movement like a leg curl or Nordic ham curl glue ham raise. And then with abduction, it’s like I said, it’s they can throw and kickbacks if they feel like it. If they don’t feel like it, just do the four or five exercises and be done. And then I auto regulate everything with them. If someone comes in here and they’re like, you know, gosh, every day some girls are like, it’s my period started today. I just don’t feel like pushing it. Okay, let’s do a bunch of machines or I’m just feeling beat down. Okay, We’re not going to do Yeah. Speaking of that, I received a whole lot of flack for posting research that the menstrual cycle in research quite conclusively does not influence strength. What are your thoughts on that? Do you think that, yeah, there is a discrepancy there between research and real life for some reason, or do you think it is the case that physiologically there’s no difference? Any differences are practical or mental because of course, you know, if you’re bleeding and therefore you can focus or you just don’t want to.

Go just hurt, you’re in pain. Yeah, you’re in pain. It doesn’t feel good and you’re bloated and you don’t. Yeah, I have clients that are like, I just first of all, all right, I don’t. This is not my area of research. I will tell you that one client I trained back in the day, Camille, back in Phoenix, every time that I don’t want to use, like the improper terms. But when she started menstruating … bleeding, basically, I hope I don’t. You can’t say menstruating anymore? I don’t know. I don’t. Is that the term for bleeding? Like when you actually start bleeding that day? She would crush PRs like if she was deadlifting she’d have like the day which she would start menstruating was the day she was her strongest by far. And it was every time whenever she’d said a PR of I guess today you’re. And she was like, look, she was strongest on that day. Other women that’s their weakest day are trained someone with that It’s like the day they’re ovulating they’re their strongest. I looked at the research behind your hormones and like, it’s like. Like when you’re ovulating, but I don’t want to butcher this. It’s been a while, testosterone, estrogen, progesterone And I think testosterone and estrogen are really high and maybe relatively stable.

Estrogen peaks with ovulation. And then during the the premenstrual it’s like testosterone, estrogen dip and progesterone increases. Yeah. So follicular phase, which includes menstruation, you have higher levels of estrogen, relatively speaking, which is where the other type of research comes in from menstrual periodization, where you do more volume in the follicular phase. Because estrogen is higher and you can recover. Quicker. It is kind of the idea. Do you do that? I don’t do any of that and I’ve never done any of that. And so I think if you take averages because every person is unique, I’ve seen research where some girls are stronger during but I think I know it was a Lauren Calenso-Semple under Stu was it under Stu Philipps. But anyway. They both have done research on that. Yeah, basically they did a review paper and they found that there’s no you’re not stronger. And when you take all this, you, when you take everyone in account if I took my whole glute squad and average out their strength over their menstrual cycle, you won’t find any big differences.

But individually it matters a lot for some people, right? Some women don’t see much of a difference. Some women notice a huge difference. But you also have to take into account how they feel because it’s like if they don’t feel good, you know, that week have that be a natural deload, And when I say deload, I don’t mean don’t train during the week. When I say deload I mean just change it up and do more volume and less effort and do different exercises. It’s like you learn how to because half of the art of personal training is figuring out how to keep people motivated and how to keep them in. And that’s one thing I love about my gym. It’s fun. The women love coming here. It’s fun. I try to create a fun atmosphere. They play their music here in Miami. It’s all like we are so many Latin women, and so they play their reggaeton in their, you know, Karol G and all these people. I don’t know who they are, but Yarishna actually trains her. She’s her trainer. But I make it fun in here. The women love each other and they love training every day. That’s something that people don’t talk about enough is like, yes, you know, the science. But then there’s another science of how to get people to like training and stick to it. And that’s a whole different topic. Another perspective, though, is that sometimes you also have to balance liking it versus pushing through. How do you balance when. Yeah because they’re not going to like it if they’re not seeing results, Right? Yeah, it can be frustrating. So that’s kind of like the we so because I’ve popularized PRs, PRs some neighboring gyms have started bashing my methods and saying bikini competitors shouldn’t ever PR and that annoys me because so okay so how are they going to put on muscle then. Yeah. Now I agree that you can just not focus so much on the PR, but just training. very hard each set but not really track it and like you could still see results but you know, when you forget your when I lose my notebook, I …

I have a training journal, you forget it and you think, how many times do you think you set up here? You look, crap, I did that two weeks ago and I forgot. And had you known you did that. You would have pushed yourself harder. So I’m a big fan of PRs, big proponent them. But then I also know I’ve been training some girls this way for five years. PRs get harder and harder, and if you’re obsessed with them, you hurt yourself and you make stupid training decisions. So your first year of training to absolutely care a lot about progressive overload. But anyway, to answer your question, how do you balance out making enjoyable and effective? Well, that’s the culture you establish. And in here it’s all based on. And when when you see Masa and Diana doing six plates per side on the hip trust, you don’t think your three plates is a big deal anymore, you know, so that it kind of solves itself. It’s that type of gym where people are cheering for each other, etc.. I don’t have to convince anyone. They see the girls that have the best physiques that are very strong. And that’s another thing I wish I could. So social media now, my girls, a lot of them are influencers. They show one rep because people’s attention span is one rep. Now you show like, like six exercises, one rep of six, just the concentric portion, the concentric portion of one rep of six exercise. So it ends up being 15 seconds long, but no. And that ends up being 20 seconds long because they throw in the clip of them putting their pre-workout scoop in or the picture of them putting chalk on. They’re very creative. We just want to show our set. If we do a set of ten with four or five, like if we did the four or five or ten, we want to show all ten reps of that will just show one rep.

But I’m like, you know, my clients, Thelma, Julia, they have bigger butts. And I’m like, you know, So I’m like, Why don’t you show all you just got that for ten, You just hit one, you just deadlifted 155 for 20. You should show that. So you should be proud of that. And they’re like, No, that doesn’t get a lot of views. So I get it.

These girls are stronger than you think. A lot of them, you know, they’re way stronger than people think. And so to build glutes, it’s not always easy. It’s so genetic. It’s so up to genetics. And, you know, you have the muscles that you didn’t ever have to train that hard. For me, it was my pecs. They just are always big. I don’t ever do like crossovers and and. For me that’s actually glutes and traps. Your glutes and traps are grow easily. Yeah. Yeah. And for me, my glutes. Go. My friend, my friend Paul ? god he. I watch him training here. He doesn’t ever do hip thrusts? He doesn’t ever train it glutes specifically. And they’re huge. And I watch him do hack squats with like a 25 on each side, slow and controlled. And I’m like, How the hell do you have glutes? If I had those glutes that his glute genetics, I would have been unstoppable. But also, if I had his glute genetics, I never would have become the glute guy because I wouldn’t have researched it, because I would they would have come easy for me. So if I zoom out and look at your how your overall training has developed over the years, we talked about it before a little bit, even though there was a lot more eccentric overloading, more lengthened partials, more emphasis on the stretch in general, and you still place a lot of emphasis on hip abduction as well. One concern with that is that I see in female clients is that it increases the hip dip. Does it increase dip dip? And if so, do the benefits outweigh the costs?

Like if you get a large glute medius, large shelf here, it’s just going to make your look, your booty look more like a guy’s booty and you get more hip dip. Like, what is the benefits? Why do you still do it? We’re hammering frontal plane hip abduction here and yeah, none of my girls are getting like, yeah. So theoretically you look at the glute. If you were to look at like, you know, the picture you and I are conjuring up in our heads is the, the glute anatomy chart. Like Ronnie Colemans glutes, Yeah. Ronnie Coleman’s glutes. We’re picturing this butterfly like this and here are the glute medius and the upper glute Max and the lower glute max going like this, and I’m not seeing that with my girls. I’m just. And here’s the other thing. So they want this shelf? Well, when you turn to the side, the shelf is heavily influenced by glute medius. But then if you if if you stand straight on yeah, you can have hip dips, but your hip dips become more pronounced when you drop down. You know, when a woman drops down below like 11% body fat and stuff like that, if they have 15 to 20% body fat, it’s not as noticeable. And a lot of my a lot of the influencers here, they’re not competitors. They just look good year round. But they eat, they they have a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. They don’t bulk and cut. They’re just living a healthy lifestyle. But back to what you were saying earlier, my my methods have changed. I am doing more eccentric loading. I’m doing less barbell stuff even though I still love squats and deads with my girls. I’m doing a more plate loaded stuff. We’ve got all these hip thrust machines, you know, I showed you all the gluteator, seated hip abduction. We’re leaning forward and doing pulses. We called it the Snow Angel machine. I showed you that body masters low back. It’s been like back extension the hammer swinging multi hip to do kickbacks and abduction. And what if circling back to the the hip dip what if women feel that they have too much hip hip. Is there anything they can do? Is there would you say, embrace it, keep training or stop training? Glute medius, just train as normal. Here in Miami. You might just get a BPO, but no, just kidding. I’m honestly like if it’s a hard thing, it’s like, they really get, Like it’s like women who say I’m quad dominant and their quads are weak. They’re just heavier, too heavy for their liking.

And you have to if you’re too heavy, you store fat somewhere like I have a belly right now because I’m too heavy. I don’t go, I’m ab dominant. I have fat here, you know what I mean? But a lot of women will store things, store fat in their lower body, so they’ll say I’m quads more I need I have hip dips or like I have saddlebags, I need to do this exercise. It’s like before you start, before you really start omitting exercises, try to get down to like everyone has, like you have a preference, a body fat preference, where if you go over this for you, it’s probably like 15%. For me, I can be like 18 and still look pretty good. Well, with clothes on, I can be 18 to look good with clothes on. If I go over 18%, I just look terrible. But you know, for me, the lowest I’ve ever gotten in my life was 14%. And it’s hard for me to sustain. I’m like hungry all the time. But anyway, I’ve never gotten into single digits. But it’s kind of like for a lot of women, if a woman is at 25% body fat and she thinks, well, it could just be that you store a lot of that and as you lean out, you actually like the way you look.

Case in point, look at all the bikini competitors. You know, they’re being told to get more upper glutes right now. That’s the latest thing. So they’re doing a lot of abduction. But they’ve always done squats and lunges. They’re not so obsessed with progressive overload. They’re not necessarily squatting to 25, but they’re doing squats every single week. But would you would you tell them to lean out then? Because I would say lean out before you make that judgment, make sure you’re lean enough for your like you’re And it’s hard to say what percentage because it could be 20% for one person, it could be 16% for another person. And women carry more women. Here’s the other thing, though. There’s what for women, there’s what they like the best versus what’s best for their career. And here’s what’s so funny, because when I grew up, everyone wanted to look like a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model or a Victoria’s Secret model.

And now the the thick fit, whatever you call it, is more popular. The thick, the thick, the thicker clients that I have. Like I’ve got this client … She’s got like 700,000 followers. She has big, bigger legs, but she looks she wears it well. She looks amazing. And I’m like … I don’t think you should diet like, I don’t think you should try to lose that. I think you would lose if she’s like my followers. Notice if I lose 5 lbs, they like the thickness and like my client, Nicole in here … they’ve got they’ve got they need to keep their fat because a lot of the girls have. And this something no one talks about too, is how you store your fat. Some of these girls, a lot of my girls get accused of having BBLs and they don’t have BBLs. They store their fat there. And it’s like how lucky are they to have like round butts? They eat more and they a lot of it goes to their butts and it just makes them rounder. So let’s say they’re already lean. They still have hip dip, they’re their ideal body fat. And they Yeah. Then I’d say, okay, let’s quit doing frontal plane hip abduction. All right. So you would you would actually then reduce. Yeah. But it’s it’s something that’s talked in theory but I don’t. Here at my gym we’re all doing that now. We’ve got this machine here so we’ve abandoned a lot of the cable standing hip abduction and all these exercises I love to do I, we are doing as much of it because we’re doing this machine in six months. Well actually my client, Babi today said Brett, my upper glutes have grown so much I miss I need to focus more on lower glutes. So I said, okay, Babi here’s the exercise we need to.

A lot of the girls feel glutes a lot during the rotisserie style hip thrust with the rotating pad. They feel their lower glutes more. But then I said, okay, so rotisserie hip thrusts. And then we’ve got all axial loaded stuff. So your squat variations, your step ups, your split squats, your lunges, your RDLs, all that stuff, and then leaning seated hip abduction because that works the lower glutes, more. Speaking of regional hypertrophy. How important do you think it is for the glutes to separate upper and lower? Because in our study we didn’t find a difference. I know, it blows my mind. So that’s something that’s good to talk about. It’s like our study. It just a good researcher. Like we we have some finding and you just peaks you go I’m going to wait till I’m going to wait to hear more because squats like you can have people doing like, for example, one other exercise that works. The lower glutes really well is that kickback I showed you on the multi hip going real high and just doing the lengthened partials, but I’ll have my girls do the whole stack on the multi hip. I think it goes up to 305 and they’re just doing from the leg up really high deep hip flexion down to about not quite to vertical. So they’re just doing this range, but that can make your glutes sore, kind of like lunges do, but without the quad soreness. So I’m always trying to figure out extra things, extra volume for glutes that takes the quads out of it. Because if I do, if I did what like Mike Israetel espoused with my girls, their quads and hamstrings would probably get too big for the leg. In fact, I’ve got a lot of these and I feel like Mike just showed that he does not work with any bikini competitors because like my, my, my client, Diana, she looks amazing. They’re like, Do not grow your quads or hamstrings, just a little more glutes. So we have to not in whatever they do grow their quads so we can’t do the squats and the lunges and Diana fills her glutes with squats a lot, but can’t do them because her quads get out of control. So in Bikini, you know, it’s about proportions and symmetry and you have to have that look.

So anyway, regional hypertrophy in our study we found that the squat and the hip thrust developed all the glute regions fairly similarly. And I’m like, neither of them grew the glute medius much at all and the upper middle and lower glute Max grew about the same. And I’m like, everyone thinks that hip thrusts work more upper glutes and squats and like lunges, work more lower glutes and you can feel it like you can palpate people’s glutes and feel the tension. And I would swear that squats and like lunges, you feel the lower glute Max more than the upper glute Max So what does that mean? Does that mean palpation is not accurate? Or it was just because it was beginners and you maybe you see more difference over time. I don’t know. I do think it’s important, but I’m open to changing my mind. I’d like to see more research emerge. A lot of things. It’s like you’re to wait till more research comes out, you know, if more gave, more research keeps coming out showing that all hip extension exercises grow your … It’s funny, I kind of don’t like, you know, we always for glute max. Hip extension is king. Hip extension is king. And lately I’ve been thinking I want to. How do you target the glute Max, first of all, half the hip extension exercises. If you’re doing a squatting motion, you’re working your quads. If you’re doing a hinging motion, you’re working your hamstrings and deadlifts work your quads, too, you know? But if you’re doing hip extension with, you know, if your knee is bent, it takes the hamstrings out of it a little bit. But if the knee if the leg straightens, then you’re doing abductors, hamstrings, glutes and you have to be working all three of them. Now, if you do like the gluteator and you kind of do hip extension and abduction at the same time, does that take the abductors out of it a little bit? Maybe. Maybe if you put a band on the knees, it it hits it sends more neural drive to glutes. That’s another topic. I am a fan of bands. I feel like everything people bash. I love bands, I love sumo, I love Shorten position. But anyway, I’m thinking more of like, how can I grow the glutes with posterior.. Like if there was a way to load, just posterior pelvic tilt. How. That that would yes.

It wouldn’t be a large range of motion but you could do it every day and if it was just a real convenient way, just like squeezing your glutes against resistance or I wish there was like a machine that let you just do extra rotation that might be more upper glute, not as much lower, but any way it would be, it would be a very effective like Upper Glute Max. But like we said. Deep what you showed deep hip flexion with Abduction. Yeah, deep hip flexion. Yeah. Yeah. Well, I don’t know. That might work lower when you’re super deep and abducting. I know that. Like, yeah, whatever our argument with Kaseem where he says that. No, that’s the, you know, the sacral fibers or the, iliac fibers and the sacrum fibers, not the … fibers. I don’t know, though. I know when you’re when we do the seated hip abduction leaning, way forward, you feel it, and you see it in the low glute max. But maybe I’m just seeing it. Maybe I’m not looking at the lowest. But when I did EMG, I had I didn’t publish this. I had, like, 12 of my girls do this. I should have published it. I have the data. I had them in the bottom of a squat during isometric as hard as they can for 5 seconds. Then they would not change position and I had to push out as hard as they can for 5 seconds and I change up the order. The order was randomize so you could push out first or squat. Anyway, what I found was even in deep, super deep hip flexion, the gluteus maximus, every first of all the glute medius and the upper middle and lower even the lower glute max fight harder pushing out compared to pushing up. And it was like three times higher activation. Like if the glute max got 10% mean pushing up, then it got 30% mean activation pushing out the …

But anyway. How important, do you think, or how predictive do you think EMG is? And well, in that scenario you’re at the same muscle length. I don’t know. How could it not? Yeah, how. Could it not? Because it’s the same muscle length. Maybe there’s some. I don’t know. I would love to see a study on that. There’s so many things Menno, you and I could sit in here and come up with 15 studies, and then I’ll never be done. I wish so bad the things we argue about. You could just. We have like ten guys out there that were on it planning it, and then like, yeah, eight months later it’s you get the data, you know, they, they publish a preprint and you can see the data and you can go, but it’s like, we’ll have these arguments for years. It’s so rare to have training studies come out. And even when you do look at what happened with our paper, Ooh, those are just beginners. Contreras picked the, hand picked the subjects. And he doctored it to favor hip thrusts. It’s just the way our industry is, is it’s unfortunate we don’t, but like they said, the long length.

But here’s the thing I wanted to talk about. You mentioned how my how I’m doing more lengthened partial than more eccentric loading in here and that in particular the eccentric loading where I’m really because I’ve got all these plate loaded machines. So the glute drive, I could just sit on it, but I make them control it all the way into the stretch the that body master is low back. I’m pushing down, having a fight in the end of the stretch. This snow angel machine. I’m pushing them. It’s frontal plane hip abduction, but I’m pushing them in neutral.

And then I have to have them do an iso hold at neutral position. You know, 15 seconds, because you don’t have a lot of tension in there with a lot the exercises. So I’m doing all that because I don’t know the answer to have these things. I will fully admit, I know I don’t know much. We don’t we have if we just look by the published research, what do we have, 3 studies. We’ve got the Kubo squat depth. Glute hypertrophy. glute gluteus maximus. We’ve got the Kubo, we’ve got the Plotkin study, and we’ve got the Cassiano. Yeah, most of the study said, What else? Squats, leg presses and the like. I don’t think they measured the glutes. No. So if we just went by published experiments, we’ve got like three studies and the Cassiano, what does it tell? Does it tell us hip thrusts or is it just that was just added volume. So because I don’t know the answer to things, I don’t. And so that’s one thing I wish you saw more from guys in our industry. I don’t know. I don’t know the answer. I won’t pretend to know what the best gluteus maximus exercise is what the best combinations are with them. And since I don’t know the answer to all these things, I have my opinion. But I don’t want to be wrong. So I’m giving the girl more lengthened and giving the girls more lengthened partials. And because what if that comes that emerges down the road to be the best way to grow the gluteus maximus? We’ll find out in time. But in the meantime, I don’t want to take two years and be wrong. And then my group, my clients got sort of short changed as a result of it, you know, and, and and it’s funny, too, because I feel like when people read about my methods, they’re like, you know, Contreras just gives hip thrusts and like bands to his clients. And it’s like my San Diego squad, I would say, is the strongest all natural female gym in the world. There’s one that could beat us.

There’s like, if I took my 30 girls and took my top 15, there’s no gym in the world, in my opinion, that could beat them. It’s like maybe, maybe there’s powerlifting gyms, but they’re all natural. None of them take things. They don’t take stuff. They don’t take anavar, they don’t take any steroids. They don’t take peptides, they don’t do anything. that you know… I’m pretty we’re like, I’m pretty sure. But like because they’re like my best friends, you know? And so so yeah, I got them very strong at squats. I got them very strong at deadlifts, I’ve gotten them strong. So it’s like these people online who will bash my programs. The only thing I do different than them is I add in like they’ll give squats and deadlifts in like quad and hamstring things. And then I added more glute stuff and then they bash me. How could my program not be better than theirs if I’m adding a little more volume for glutes? It’s such a weird industry, but the way I see it, I don’t. Since this new research is emerging with the long length stuff, don’t fight it. I’d come out with No, I’m experimenting, coming up with all the ways, the long length stuff like new exercise, things to try. Like that rotisserie hip thrust is hard at the bottom. It makes it easier at the top, the eccentric loading the single leg landmine, but also all the lunges and the squats. It’s like, make sure you’re doing those just in case that’s the best way to grow your glutes. And then people don’t fault me if people don’t go, Oh Contreras let us astray because I’m always trying to go buy the latest science, whereas I feel like some people just get so pigeonholed into one thing they’ll never change their mind.

They’ll never change their mind, even if no matter how much data emerges. Yeah, I think that’s that’s also why I’m talking to you, because I can say for sure that you are not a zealot like a lot of people. I think a lot of people unfairly portray you as a zealot, like hip thrust is everything. You’re just selling hip thrust, whatever. And that’s absolutely not true. Like you will 100% adopt your training practices based on the latest science and you are clearly even willing to fund a study that might prove you wrong. And when it proves you wrong or the findings are different than what you expected, then you would change your training. Yeah, and I cannot say that for a lot of people. Thank you. So that’s why we’re talking. And you said, I don’t know much. I think you do know a lot about these topics. So while we have disagreements on various of these topics and sometimes it’s a matter of nuance, sometimes we just have very different methods, but we both appreciate the science and we will both adopt our opinions as new science comes in and really shows us, okay, this is something now is not not a matter of debate anymore. We were just wrong about this. Yeah, and that’s the main point there. We will change our minds. It might take it might take you or me three studies to change your mind. But we will change our minds and we will be open minded to being wrong. We will. If a new study comes out, we won’t say things as boldly as we once did. And I think that’s missing in today’s social media. I don’t think you’re on social media that much, are you? Because… I’m not on it much now. I post on it much. Yeah. You post and Get off. I get trapped. I never used to get trapped. I’m not the best sleeper. So sometimes I look at my… my search feed knows what I like. But anyway, lately. it’s so frustrating. It’s like before these algorithms, scientists had power. You remember how strong the evidence based industry was? There were like 15 of us and we had power and we could we could cast doubt on the the charlatans and the pseudoscience.

And we could we could level them out, you know? And now it’s like the more it’s like because the things that come up on your search obviously are things that are going viral. So this thing will have 300,000 likes and it’s wrong. It’s dead wrong. And I’m going, this is what everyone’s seeing is wrong stuff. The world is become becoming dumber because of the algorithms. We don’t have the power. We once did. So I appreciate you and the rest of the evidence based community very much. I like to think that in the end, the prevailing norms will always gravitate towards the actual truth, and science is the best way to find out the truth. So in the long run, we should always end up being right , as long as go with what the science says. But it’s just frustrating. It doesn’t, it doesn’t matriculate. Is that the word? It doesn’t get. So yeah. I don’t know if that’s the right word, but it doesn’t develop faster. Yeah. If like if Instagram someone told me this about China.

I don’t know if it’s true or not. If it is true, it’d be hilarious. The Chinese Tik Tok rewards educators in science and they get preferentially. Whereas the the US, the American version of Tik Tok is just based on entertainment. Yeah, they do actually. If that’s true, that’s hilarious because China would become, we want to be smarter over time. We want Americans to be dumber over time. I don’t think that would be any way if that’s true, we should care about that because we’re going there. How cool would it be if we got like an extra like, you’re stuff’s going to go viral Easier because you have proven yourself to be a good scientist and caring about truth. But no, we don’t have that. We we have to have good delivery. And an interesting personality. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. And the latter being the most important. How is your physique? And you can just say anything you want If you have a jacked physique. It’s a little frustrating lately because I feel like it’s getting worse. We we in the during before Instagram in the Facebook era and then in the beginning of Instagram science based content was I mean remember the infographic craze like that was we it was more scientific and now it’s just attention spans have gone down and it’s more about your physique and how good you are at editing reels. Yeah, you’ve got to be a little movie developer, you know. Well, the people that are still watching right now, they’re definitely not in that category. Yeah. So I want to thank you for your time. Thank you. And Where can people find you? Do you have anything in the making? Any new glute machines? I have my plate loaded hip thrust. It’s funny. I ordered 22 of them. I sold like 17 in the last, I don’t know, a month or two, but that would have sold out overnight back in the day. I think that’s become saturated, you know? But I do have pride in my products, my BC strength products.

I feel like I’ve got the best plate loaded. Yeah. So I try to I’ve got the best plate loaded hip thrust unit in the market. I’ve got the best 45 degree hyper because I don’t put things out. I test them with my clients for like sometimes up to a year before I put them out there and we keep tweaking. So with the 45 deg hyper, you’ve got to make it usable. And I take my five foot female clients and make sure they can, it fits them because have these big machines that we love, you know, from like Arsenal strength into these giant, they make them for men, for big jacked dudes, and then the women get on them. They’re doing a hip thrust in their knee angle is like this and they feel it all in their hammies or something. You know what I mean? Or like they’re doing a hack squat and they don’t even get to parallel before it bottoms out. So I try to make it usable for like a while. Like you can be five foot, you could be six foot six, six, eight and still use my equipment. And so, yeah, I don’t have any new machines I want to have in time because I keep thinking, how long can I be the glue guy until it’s creepy, Like I’m 47 right now. Can I be 55? At what point is it like, ewww, why is he the glue guy? That’s weird. So, like, I have my “booty by Bret” That’s my main thing. I think over in ten years, maybe I’ll switch to BC straight. Being my main moneymaker and having my own plate loaded because I love ham restraint. I love all these plate loaded models. I’d love to have my own line, but it is a tough market to crack. Like I said, I thought I was going to sell these out overnight and it’s taken me a while, so I’ve got to learn how infiltrate the commercial gym market. My products are for home use. So yeah, I’m always working on stuff, but lately I’ve been trying to not do too much, right? And everything’s on bretcontreras.com. I don’t update that anymore. Do you use your website still? Not much, anymore. I know. Remember the days when we would blog choose a like a thumbnail or like film a YouTube video embed it in the blog post the blog, post the link on Facebook and Twitter, and then send it out to our newsletter. That was like the drill. And then now it’s changed a lot.

But anyway, yeah, it’s mainly just my Instagram. That’s where I post everything. I’m active on my stories and that’s really all the social media I do now. I don’t do Twitter anymore. I don’t do Facebook, I don’t do TikTok. I’m just on Instagram. All right. Bret Contreras, everyone. Thank you.


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About the author

Menno Henselmans

Formerly a business consultant, I've traded my company car to follow my passion in strength training. I'm now an online physique coach, scientist and international public speaker with the mission to help serious trainees master their physique.

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