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The ISOCHAIN: FAQ

Since the initial announcement regarding the ISOCHAIN, Dragon Door has been inundated with emails regarding the device—wanting to know everything from the expected release date, to shipping issues and training queries.

Wondering whether the ISOCHAIN is the right investment for your fitness lifestyle? In this article, we will be answering the ten most common questions.

We need YOU to join the Isometric Revolution!


FAQ #1:
When will my ISOCHAIN be ready?
 
We are working hard to get the device to advocates for the first quarter of 2020. If the later prototypes need more refinement or extra hardware, this goal date may be put back, however. Dragon Door demands that our customers get the perfect version of the ISOCHAIN—nothing else is acceptable.

Advocates will be kept up-to-date every few weeks with a newsletter which outlines estimated shipping dates, reveals new details about the ISOCHAIN, and includes useful isometric training tips and hacks.

The ISOCHAIN will not be commercially available to the public until after all pre-orders are fulfilled. Beyond that point the current pre-order bonuses may be withdrawn. So if you want an ISOCHAIN with all the added value at the lowest price, please be sure to secure your unit now, while the pre-order offers are still available.
 
ISOCHAIN device
 
Secure your ISOCHAIN here.
 
 
FAQ #2:
What's the price for delivery of the ISOCHAIN?
 
Delivery is completely FREE for customers in the USA.

Yes—we can ship the ISOCHAIN worldwide. International advocates will be given a shipping price prior to delivery. We are waiting until we have the final weight of the device determined in order to keep any and all shipping costs at rock-bottom. We guarantee that any postage and packing for our international customers will be kept to an absolute minimum.
 
 
FAQ #3:
Can I work my chest with the ISOCHAIN?
 
Yes. You can work every muscle in the body using the ISOCHAIN. Horizontal presses are not required for maximal pectoral development.

An important (but little-known) isometric drill is the isometric chest press, where the bar is held at sternum level and pressed upwards. This mimics the bottom position of a bench press, and strongly activates the lower-to-middle pectoral muscles. (If in doubt, try it with a broomstick. Remember to tuck the lats in, and squeeze hard.) Drills with the bar higher than this—such as regular presses—completely activate the fibers of the upper-chest.

Isometric exercise works more muscle groups than conventional forms of exercise, no matter which drill you are performing. This is due to a principle of physiology known as Sherrington’s Law of Irradiation. This law states that the higher the levels of force a muscle generates, the more neighboring musculature is recruited to help. Since isometrics involves maximum absolute forces, even work on a single muscle group gives a bigger "bang for your buck" by recruiting other muscles.

You can feel this effect when you are working with the ISOCHAIN. Isometric curls, for example, not only work the biceps; the forces are so high you can feel the chest, shoulders, traps and in fact the entire torso working. You have to really experience this "irradiation" effect in action to understand how powerful it is.
 
Bruce Lee training with isometrics
Bruce Lee performs an isometric curl; you can see his pectorals and deltoids
powerfully activating—irradiation in action.
 
For more in-depth information of the scientific benefits of ISOCHAIN training, click here.
 
 
FAQ #4:
Somebody told me you can’t do squats with the ISOCHAIN. Is this true?
 
No, it’s not true.

You cannot perform back squats—squats with the bar behind the neck—with an ISOCHAIN, but this is not a bad thing. Isometric back squats are typically performed near lockout, with the body wedged under a loaded bar. Although gigantic weights can be used (in fact, they rapidly become a necessity) it has been argued that these loads are primarily supported by the vertebral column—which is locked into position—rather than the body’s muscles.
 
Isometric Back Squat
An isometric back squat will require giant weights.
 
With an ISOCHAIN, you perform squats with the bar "racked" in front of the shoulders. This position allows the thigh muscles to activate fully and generate very high forces, however these forces are absorbed and distributed by the muscular system, instead of the spine.
 
Isometric Chain Squat
An old-school isometric chain squat.

In addition, the ISOCHAIN allows athletes to perform multiple excellent isometric leg exercises such as split squats, hack squats, Bulgarian split squats, Zercher squats, pistols, sissy squats, goblet squats, as well as a range of deadlift styles.

For more information on ISOCHAIN training, click here.
 
 
FAQ #5:
The promotional literature says that the free training manual is over 400 pages!
Is the ISOCHAIN very complex to use?

The ISOCHAIN is not complex to use. Despite being extremely versatile—it can be used to build peak strength, gain muscle, develop athletic endurance, or anything in between—it has been designed to be so simple (and safe) that even a child could use it.

ISOCHAIN Handle Details
 
The accompanying manual—titled The Ultimate Isometrics Manual—has been compiled by several specialists. It contains details on the history of isometrics, the science behind isometrics, ISOCHAIN technology, plus all-inclusive practical information on using different forms of zero-tech isometrics (solid state, self-resistance, loadless training, etc). In addition, Paul "Coach" Wade has written a completely new and extensive section on progressive isometrics using exclusively bodyweight.

The manual is the most comprehensive and important volume on isometric training ever written. If you choose to absorb this book cover-to-cover, you will become a specialist in isometric strength training.

If you have no interest in the theory, no problem. You can just pick from one of the dozens of ISOCHAIN workouts in the programs section, and plug-and-play.

 
FAQ #6:
I’m very tall/strong. Can I still use the ISOCHAIN?

Yes. The ISOCHAIN structural prototypes have been rigorously (some might say, brutally) tested on the biggest and strongest athletes in the world. It is rated to a thousand pounds of force—that’s equivalent to more plates than will fit on a regular barbell.

The heavy-duty chain used in the device measures 86 inches; the tension spring, carabiners and brackets are well over six inches in total. As a result, the full extension of the ISOCHAIN, top-to-bottom, is nearly eight feet—long enough to allow even the tallest athlete to perform presses.

For various reasons, a shoulder-width grip is indicated for isometric exercises. The average male shoulder-width is 16.1 inches. (This is the biacromial measurement; the addition of the lateral deltoid adds a few inches.) The ISOCHAIN handle is over 27 inches long—large enough for even the biggest athlete to use.

In terms of hand size, the ISOCHAIN handle measures 2 inches in diameter, making it identical to a gold-standard Olympic barbell. If you can grip a barbell, you can use an ISOCHAIN.

For more information on the ISOCHAIN’s design features, click here.
 
 
FAQ #7:
Will the ISOCHAIN be of benefit for women?

Yes. Females develop strength and conditioning along identical physiological mechanisms to males, so working with the ISOCHAIN will help women gain strength, tone muscle, improve cardiovascular health and decrease body fat levels. Because of differing hormonal profiles, however, women will not gain the bulky muscles of male athletes.
 
Adrienne Harvey Isometrics
 
The difference in the selection of training methods between genders is largely down to aesthetics. Traditionally, women are very attuned to isometric exercise; yoga, callanetics and Pilates are examples of exercise forms dominated by the ladies. Some women enjoy aggressively slinging around chunks of iron to get in shape—those who do not, might be interested in investing in an ISOCHAIN.

Check out a great article by Andrea Du Cane and Adrienne Harvey on isometric training for women here.
 
 
FAQ #8:
Can older people use the ISOCHAIN?

Isometrics is the ideal form of resistance training for older and elderly populations. Because there is zero external load and zero momentum, the risk of acute injury from ISOCHAIN drills is vanishingly low. Due to the absence of internal friction, isometrics builds strong joints without the grinding, damage or irritation conventional exercises can cause, and has actually been proven to reduce joint pain. Many senior athletes who have not been able to press, curl or squat for years due to pain find that they can do so pain-free with isometrics.

Isometrics was once thought to be bad for the heart, but more up-to-date research has shown this idea to be erroneous. In fact, the opposite is true: isometrics provides remarkable cardiovascular benefits, strengthening the heart and dramatically reducing blood pressure over time. (That said, please be wise: always consult your physician before beginning a new training program.)

In fact, whereas ageing is a drawback in other strength sports, it may be an advantage for isometrically-trained athletes. Research has found that older people have superior isometric endurance compared with younger individuals—possibly due to increased pain tolerance (Bäckman, et al., 1995).
 
Senior Isometrics
It’s not new. A senior weightlifter performs weighted isometrics.
 
 
FAQ #9:
Can young people use the ISOCHAIN?

Yes. Previous studies which have questioned the safety of strength training for younger people centered around external weights which were often asymmetrical, and loaded through the spine.

Force levels in isometrics are autoregulated—meaning the loads are not external, the but internally set by the athlete’s own nervous system. In addition, there is no excessive top-load on the spine during ISOCHAIN training. (See Question 4)

Measurable isometric strength training has been found to be of huge benefit to younger athletes in multiple sports. Isometrics are more efficient, easier on the joints, more versatile, and potentially more motivating than dynamic methods.
 
Youth Isometrics

For a terrific in-depth article on measurable isometrics for youth coaches by Brannon Frank, click here.
 
 
FAQ #10:
Does the ISOCHAIN build "real" strength, or just "isometric" strength?

Isometric strength IS "real" strength.

Sports science defines strength as the capacity to exert force. In isometric strength training, athletes exert more force than in dynamic forms of training—so from the scientific perspective, isometrics builds more "real" strength than any other method.

If by "real" strength you mean functional strength, then it’s important to understand that all functional strength has isometric strength as a foundation. When you perform an act as simple as picking something up, your spinal muscles fire isometrically; your core muscles fire isometrically; your grip muscles fire isometrically. Isometric stability is the key to functional strength.

If by "real" strength you mean dynamic, or moving strength, then the answer is still yes. Increased isometric strength in any given muscle translates into increased moving strength for that muscle (Lum & Barbosa, 2018). This is why many elite powerlifting coaches, such as Louie Simmons, include isometric work in their programs as a staple. In addition, the ability to generate tension and plug "energy leaks" in the body is fundamental to all great strength, and this is primarily an isometric skill.

For Paul "Coach" Wade’s take on isometrics, bodyweight and prison training, click here; for information on isometrics and "black belt" tension skills, click here.
 
Still have questions? We’d love to hear from you.
Email us at: isochainproject@gmail.com and a member of the Dragon Door
Research Team will get back to you as soon as we possibly can.
 

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