In his video, Greg Newton shows several self-resistance exercises with a belt. These exercise may be used to develop strength and muscles of the arms, shoulders, back, and chest. The efficiency of these self-resistance exercises may be comparable with the efficiency of cable exercises if we develop sufficient tension in the muscles.
Unfortunately, this video is unavailable now.
I included some of them in my daily workout; however, I use the belt loop with 2 soft handles that allow applying more efforts without any discomfort in the palms. Therefore, self-resistance exercises become more effective. Also, I use the long belt with 2 handles for training my pecs, back, side body muscles, and legs. This "equipment" is extremely cheap because it is made of webbing.
P.S. If DIY projects are not for you, Bruce's equipment (handles, anchor, and isometric suspension/trainer), which can be purchased on this site, might be the ideal tool for dynamic and isometric self-resistance training.
P.P.S. To get the best results, perform one max isometric holding for 3-5 sec (~one breathing cycle) in each set before the full ROM reps. Using isometric "pre-holding", you can develop muscle tension close to 1RM in dynamic self-resistance.
One more trick to increase the effectiveness of self-resistance training
Many years ago, when I was engaged in deep diving, I used “shallow” breathing to increase my tolerance to carbon dioxide. This breathing was popularized by Dr. Buteyko for asthma treatment. In addition to breath-holding exercises, shallow breath training substantially prolonged the time under water. Later, when I stopped diving because of ear barotraumas, I gave this breathing method up. Recently, I've started Buteyko’s breathing again for other reasons and found that this breathing also elevated my tolerance to lactic acid (PH?) during self-resistance training. As a result, I could increase my voluntary muscle tension and/or rep numbers in my sets. Explanations of biochemical mechanisms of action are very controversial, but it works. You can google hypoxic/hypoventilation training for more information. I think that regular practice of this breathing might increase the effectiveness of any resistance training. Good article on Buteyko's method to readwww.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3242544/How-breathe-slim-sounds-potty-new-book-says-breathing-scientifically-proven-work.html
Note: Do not use Buteyko breathing during workouts. Find another time for practice (2 or 3 times/day for 10-20 min). I also train this breathing for 5-10 min before my morning SR workouts. Hypoventilation training for 5-10 min before a workout energizes the body and facilitates attention/concentration during SR training. We can feel that as the better mind-body connection, light head, and clearer eyesight. Probably, these effects are related to better brain oxygenation due to blood vessels vasodilitation evoked by accumulation of carbon dioxide and adaptation to the lower level of oxygen.
Note: We are not elite athletes, and I would not recommend to use hypoventilation during workouts, especially intensive ones. Also do not use the second forced exhalation as it was described in the article. Forced exhalation can increase brain blood pressure. At lest for me, it did. Try to follow the simple protocol: normal/shallow inhalation - prolonged normal exhalation - short holding up to light feeling air shortage (as in the picture above). This hypoventilation training really works.
I do self-resistance exercises for full body for 60-65 min daily. Hard high tension exercises with the belts take me for 35-40 min. After that, I perform co-contraction (KSHD) exercises for ~20 min. Then I do few isometric exercises as supplemental ones for my CNS conditioning. For this mixed protocol, 24 hours are enough for recovery.
As I mentioned above, for the best results, I hold my preliminary isometric tension with the belts close to my max possible ("peak contraction") for 3-5 sec ( for ~ 1 breath cycle) before starting each dynamic self-resistance (SR) set. I try to keep this max preliminary isometric level in my muscles through the full SR set. In reality, during SR movements, the dynamic tension will be slightly less than preliminary max isometric level, but it will be enough for effective SR training. The muscles should not have a break during the sets to get a partial blood occlusion in the muscles. Blood occlusion additionally stimulates muscle hypertrophy. Because I use high muscle tension, the numbers of reps are 6-10 in my sets. If I can do more than 10 reps, I know that my SR tension was not enough, and I try to increase my preliminary isometric tension and following SR dynamic tension during my next set. This is an important criterion for the development of strength and muscles during SR training, at least for me. In general, I try to follow classic bodybuilding principles, using the SR instead of weightlifting. It is safer for older people and can give comparable results if we train properly.
T-end stick is a stick with two handles like a bullworker (see photo, page 1). I use it for my self-resistance exercises. See the exercises on page 1 (post 1).
I'm drawing an utter blank here. I can't conceptualize the sticks with the stated instructions. The pics look like pogo sticks with the bottom view cropped off. If you had a complete picture of the artifacts or engaged in use I'd understand better.
You need to adjust the stick length for you. The comfortable stick length for me is if I take one handle in my hand, the second stick handle will be on my chest middle line. This length allows keeping constant tension in the working muscles. They should not have a break during each set.
Trying to naturally increase your testosterone levels will have very little, or no, impact on your muscle gains if you are already within the normal range. Studies show that whether you are on the lower side or higher side of normal, strength and muscle gains are almost equal. More important the sensitivity and the number of testosterone receptors in muscles. Therefore, the gains come when you move from low to normal, or normal to high testosterone levels until receptor adaptation will occur.
One more isometric trick for dynamic self-resistance
It looks that when we use self-resistance (SR), our brain continuously tries to cheat us and gradually decreases levels of our muscle tension in our workouts. At least, my "lazy" brain does it. Preliminary isometric holding for 3-5 sec before each dynamic set (see above) partially decreases this effect and helps to keep higher muscle tension through the full workout. However, the brain also wishes to decrease our SR tension inside the sets . In other words, we begin our set with higher muscle tension and finish it with a lower one. It may decrease the effectiveness of SR training. To minimize this effect, try to start each rep with very short (1-1.5 sec) max isometric holding and then perform the full ROM. Factually, you should initiate every single movements by focusing on contracting the target muscles in the lengthened and shortened positions. Do it for each rep inside the set, and you will feel that your muscles work with higher tension through the reps and sets.
Some people do not believe that pure self-resistance (SR) training can build strength and muscles comparable to weightlifting. Probably, for many of us it is a right conclusion because we do not have sufficient mind-muscle connection. Let’s consider our vision as the example. If we see through the frosted glass, we can see the object in general, without any important details. Clear glass allows us to see details, and we have clear understanding object and how to work with it.
We have the similar situation with our muscle feeling. When we start SR training we feel our muscles as through the “frosted glass”. We do not have very clear and sharp feeling our muscle work. Self-resistance is a skill based training that makes our muscle feeling/awareness more clear and sharp. Using this feeling, we can increase our tension more and more, reaching our physiological limit. We can also increase our control of muscle antagonists and other muscle groups included in our exercises. More clear and sharper our feeling muscle tension/contraction, higher tension we can develop. Regular practice of concentration on working muscles allows the maintenance of this unique muscle feeling. Therefore, frequent SR training is preferable.
Isometrics is an extremely helpful tool to develop the mind-muscle connection. Therefore, supplemental isometric exercises are very desirable for SR training. Also, isometrics has tremendous capability to increase our CNS tolerance to high muscle tension which is needed for our SR progress.
The bottom line. Our attention/concentration is a key to our success in SR. No distractions, no music, no TV while you do SR exercises. Concentrate deeper, deeper, and deeper on muscle tension and movements. During the rest, concentrate on muscle relaxation and muscle growth. That is all that we need for our success.
I would like to remind Arnold's advice again: "Biggest mistake is mechanical performance ...These people do not have their mind inside the muscles. They look like shit because they don't concentrate. They do not pay attention... You have to be inside the muscle. You train or you don't. If you do something, then do it. Go all out." This requirement is especially important for SR training where our mind should simultaneously create and overcome high muscle tension.
I want to emphasize again the importance of two types of isometric "presets" or "pre-flexing" (max isometric holding) for successful SR training. The first type is the preset/pre-flexing for ~ 1 breathing cycle before starting any SR set (before the first rep). The second one is the short preset/pre-flexing for 1.5-2.0 sec before each rep inside the sets. During both presets, we should develop max possible isometric muscle tension. These presets will facilitate the development/keeping our highest dynamic tension during the following SR reps.
Iso-dynamic 3 – Pre-fatigue: This is a great method to improve mind-muscle connection. It may not be the best pure hypertrophy method, but it is very effective to learn to recruit and stimulate a lagging muscle group. You start an exercise by holding the position where you can feel the greatest tension in the target muscle. That can either be the peak contraction position or the mid-range, depending on the exercise. During that hold, you must focus on contracting the muscle as hard as you can, not just on holding the position. Hold for 20-30 seconds, then do 6-12 reps. You will feel the target muscle a lot more than usual. Since this method is more about motor learning than lifting big weights, you can do up to 3 sets on an exercise.
Muscle pumping facilitates body feeling and muscle control in SR. Try to take 1 drop of Halls with vitamin C and 1 glass of water before your morning SR workout. They will increase your pumping and energy during SR training.