The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

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Against Gravity
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The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

Post by Against Gravity » Sun Oct 04, 2020 1:24 pm

Recently, Dragondoor has decided to launch a device that basically, measures isometric strength instantaneously.

Here's all the info:
https://www.dragondoor.com/store/why_yo ... sometrics/

And here's 5 articles about it, written by Paul Wade (author of Convict Conditioning book).

Isometrics, Prison Training and Bodyweight: A Match Made in Valhalla
Isometrics: Black Belt Tension Training
ISOCHAIN Plus the Weights? The Best of Both Worlds!
The Science of Isometrics Part I: The Third Law of Strength
Why the Isochain? Unlocking Superhuman Strength—Fast


First Youtube videos about it, by Red Delta Project:





And finally, the book 'The Ultimate Isometrics Manual' - which I definitely recommend reading.

After you've checked out all the previous material, I'd like to know your thoughts about it. Let's forget the price for a moment (it's not cheap). I'd like to know if you'd find such a device useful, and how you'd use it. In my case, for example:

1) For sticking points in main exercises, like OHP and weighted chin-ups. Once you know where you usually fail (the sticking point), you can use the device to build strength in that zone. For example, biceps are usually the weak point for chin-ups, and the isochain allows you to do isometric barbell curls. You can use the isochain as a solid substitute of pin presses as well.

2) For deadlifts, front squats, bent over rows.... This is basically the best complement for calisthenics - covering the gaps that make barbell training slighly superior in some aspects. Without any plates whatsoever. After all, in a deadlift, most muscles work isometrically anyway.

3) For overall fun. Testing how much tension can you build up in a certain position, and for how much time. For us, fitness fanatics, it's like a new whole game to play!

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Vagabond
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Re: The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

Post by Vagabond » Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:00 am

This is awesome! Ross Enamait recommended using a chain and a board (to stand on) for doing isometrics in never gymless. I think this is a seriously cool idea, especially for something like deadlifting. For example, I once bought a book about various Shaolin training techniques, and there was one where you try to uproot a tree daily, ha ha.

But $450 USD is insane. I can easily make one that's cheaper myself. Seriously, let's think about it. The world's economy sucks right now and there's a pandemic. People don't have tons of money to burn. With mass production, they could have made one that's way less expensive than that, and more people would have bought one.

Actually, why don't we DIY one? Here's what we need:

-Two sections of chain from the hardward store
-A few steel carabiners
-A thick wooden board
-A piece of hardware you can safely anchor to the board (I recommend something that can pass through the board. Like, drill a hole in the board, pass a hook through it and have a wide piece of metal on the other side of the board to spread out the force. Alternatively, a big ass hook or loop bolted in a thick ass board should do just fine.
-A hang scale like this: https://www.amazon.ca/Klau-Portable-Dig ... 07QRG78Y3/
-A steel bar.

All in all, I bet we can make a decent one for less than $100. And for the beeping, well, just use a metronome app on your phone.

And when we think about it, we probably don't even need the chains, we could use climbing straps pretty easily. Here's an idea. Buy a 2x10" board and a steel pipe. Cut it in three pieces that are wide enough that you could take a sumo stance on. Bottom piece is the base. Top piece is where you stand. Middle piece is a spacer. Cut a rectangular hole in the top board. Cut an other rectangular hole in the middle board, but add a narrower, longer rectangle where you can insert the steel pipe. That way, the steel pipe will be stuck underneath the top board. Put the pipe in, glue all the boards. You just got yourself a very solid anchor, and a board to stand on. Use the straps and carabiners to do the rest. Even better! Cut three rectangles in the board, so you can have different configurations for the straps. For example, you could have a strap on each side to place yourself in a backsquat position. We can figure out the scale thing differently. Even if one was to use two hang scales, it would still be cheaper that Dragon Door's version.

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Re: The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

Post by Against Gravity » Sat Oct 10, 2020 12:40 pm

That's a great DIY idea, thanks for sharing! In fact, I'll probably build one myself.

Because I'm especially curious about the training potential of this device, especially as a tool for breaking sticking points. I mean: the reason we fail a weighted chin-up or OHP is usually a weakness in a specific part of the ROM (sticking point or weakest link). So if we could train that point specifically through isometrics... the only limit is our genetics and training consistency.

I'll eventually use this method myself, once I seriously plateau with OAC and OHP - and maybe share the results of the experiment here (if the forum remains 'alive').

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Re: The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

Post by Vagabond » Sat Oct 10, 2020 6:41 pm

That would be a fascinating experience, man. I've used isometrics for one arm chin-ups in the past. Just did 5 second holds with weights, using different angles. It had a very positive impact.

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Re: The Isochain: Dragondoor's device for training isometrics

Post by Against Gravity » Sun Oct 11, 2020 1:43 pm

It definitely has an unexplored potential!