A master of his craft, Hooper decided to pass on some powerful wisdom.
Among the current elite powerhouse contenders, Mitchell Hooper may be the next big thing. After bursting onto the scene in 2022 – with podium finishes in six of seven events and winning two of his last three, including the 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic UK – expect even more from Hooper in 2023. However, he captivated the sport in a terrific debut year before he tried to build, dispensing some useful training tips before the Canadian athlete.
On January 11, 2023, Hooper posted a video to his YouTube channel where he gave a demonstration to a group of athletes on how to properly lift the Atlas stones. The session is nothing new for Hooper, who occasionally shares similar technique training videos in between moments of refining his own strength.
Hooper does not delve into his factual lecture on the Atlas Stones.
Set your stance in the middle
He first sketches how one starts from a standard lifting stance, noting that The balls of the athlete’s feet should be level with the center of the stone when setting up. Another crucial point is to ensure that the feet are spaced wide enough.
“You want to be in a place where you can see your feet [on either side of the stone]. Look at your feet on the sides of the rock. “
Hooper says that if a person’s feet are too close to the atlas stone, it can negatively change the position of the hands as they hold the stone. Plus, with a stone in hand, the knees can rub against the athlete’s elbows, making for a less-than-ideal setup when lifting.
Cup the stone with hands and forearms
As for specific notes about the athlete’s hands attempting to lift the Atlas Stone, Hooper clarifies The arms should not be straight down because that forces the relatively weak biceps muscles to support the weight.
“The name of the game is creating friction by creating as much surface contact as possible. You want your hand and your forearm to be on the stone as much as possible.
Instead, the goal should be to have one’s arms touching the stone as much as possible, almost “cupping” the big trademark strongman by placing your hands slightly forward of the center of weight.
“Straight arm, arms forward, arms locked. That way, we’re using our chest and our lats to squeeze the stone. We’re not using our biceps to pick up the stone.
Deadlift high and lap the stone
Once the athlete is in the right position, Hooper maintains. Their aim should be to lift the stone into their lap by placing it as high as possible on their knees. Then, when ready, the hips can sink back in, and the stone can roll naturally into the lap.
“The goal you want to do is lift the stone as high as you can. You don’t want to sit on your knees and immediately squat down,” Hooper said. “…Think about how the muscles are resisting the force and where that force is going.”
A common technique principle for strongmen and strongmen, rocking helps the athlete seamlessly re-grip for improved leverage before standing.
“The first goal is to bring the stone from the floor to your lap…Once the stone is past your knee, you can sit down and roll over. You switch hands, and you can bring it up. [to a standing position].”
Get hips under the rock to stand up
Each hooper, once someone is ready to change their grip for hip movement, The stone should “sit on the sternum” as tightly as possible to the body of the stone.. Then the athlete should stand up and move the stone straight up.
Hooper explains that some people make the mistake of trying to lift the stones up when they are against their sternum. To counter this overcorrection, the strongman advises to try hard to keep the stone tight to the chest and extend the hips down for improved leverage and full extension.
“When it comes to expanding [into a standing position]You shouldn’t think about bringing the stone up…your thought should be to shoot your hips under the stone and then it will roll.
A special technique for high platforms
If a strongman or strongwoman competitor is tasked with lifting a stone onto a high platform, Hooper said they should try. Make sure their hands are not directly over the center of the stone when resetting the grip. This type of “hugging” offers limited flexibility in power manipulation with the rock in the top position and a high chance of a failed lift.
Instead, when an athlete is working to re-grip, Arms should be placed at a 45 degree angle to the top of the stoneA stone on a raised platform leaves more room to work.
Finally, Hooper offered a reminder that the balls of the feet indicate where the center of the stone is. Likewise, the arms should still be in lockstep with the balls of the feet on the starting position. While reviewing the sample performances of several video participants, Hooper offered a final correction to a common mistake made in the initial phase of the lift.
“The movement above the floor is not a squat, it is a stiff-legged deadlift. The waist is really high. “
An already established superstar, Hooper, a teacher, soon transitions seamlessly into a stronger Hooper. The athlete is set to compete at the 2023 Australia’s Strongest International (ASI) on January 21, 2023 in Yapeen, Australia. If his exploits there go anywhere near his success from 2022, Hooper could start the new competitive year with a bang.
Featured image: Michelle Hooper on YouTube