By: Josh Bryant
When I was a junior in high school, my best friend, Adam benShea, and I really wanted to go to a bar after watching the movie Roadhouse for the umpteenth time.
Being in Southern California, we decided to head down to the “Nard” to this little Mexican kick n’ stab bar right off of highway 101 called “Roadhouse” (yes, the name influenced us) and if they refused our underage patronage, the legendary PJ Grunts was just down the road.
We had been working out at the Gold’s Gym in Oxnard with our lifting mentor, Steve Holl, and to our bewilderment, we recognized a wannabe bodybuilder from the gym, the typical all show, no go, pec and bi warrior, didn’t train legs and had a neck like a stack of dimes. In his skintight shirt, from a distance, this cat looked impressive but up close the aura of power dissipated.
An argument resembling a lover’s quarrel erupted with the wannabe bodybuilder and a female bartender.
Then, like a thief in the night, a bouncer who clearly had romantic feelings for the bartender rushed in from the parking lot through the back of the bar.
This bloke had a massive back and sported traps that would make an alpha male silver back gorilla envious and had one of the thickest, most imposing necks I’ve ever seen.
This “look” screamed raw power, serving as a mute bible that warned at the drop of a hat these muscles could coil into combat-ready weapons, like a cobra ready to strike.
The end result was the bouncer walked up to the puffed-up pretty boy and proceeded to put his hands behind his back in a crossed style and got right up in his face and said. “Leave on your feet or your head pendejo.”
Intelligently, this pendejo left on his feet!
The pretty boy had multiple opportunities for a sucker punch but, he knew better. The bouncer demonstrated power from a passive position, very impressive to watch to us and the female bartender who clearly had found her knight in shining armor.
Adam looked at me and said, “It’s the neck.” I knew it was; if for nothing else, this alone was reason to train the neck.
Functional Benefits of a Strong Neck
“When a warrior goes to battle, he must have a sword and a shield. The neck is the fighter’s shield,” says former Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu world champion, Adam benShea.
A strong, muscular neck will reduce fighters’ chances of getting knocked or choked out. Any physical collision, be it on the gridiron or in a motor vehicle, can result in neck injuries and/or head injuries, but the severity will be greatly reduced with a strong neck.
Many football “sports performance specialists” have their heads so far up their asses they don’t know which way is out by doing ladder drills til the cows come home but completely neglect neck work.
From a purely aesthetic standpoint, a muscular neck screams bad ass and training the neck can help chisel that sagging jawline into the ruggedly handsome masterpiece it once was.
And for large, muscular, tactical athletes who have to make “the tape” body fat requirement, neck work is essential.
With all of the latest gismos and gadgets, nothing beats a good neck harness in building a strong, durable neck.
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