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From The Desk Of Clarence Bass

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The Evil Russian Touches Down in Albuquerque

Fast-rising physical conditioning guru Pavel Tsatsouline (pronounced Sat-so-leen) and his lovely wife Julie were in Albuquerque in January to do a workshop, and Carol and I had the pleasure of taking them to dinner at our favorite Mexican restaurant. We learned that they both like their chile hot - and much more.

Dr. Len Schwartz, the inventor of HeavyHands who is profiled in Challenge Yourself, told me about Pavel - he has a degree in applied sports physiology from the Physical Culture Institute in the former Soviet Union and taught strength and flexibility to Spetsnaz, the Soviets Special Operations Forces before moving to the United States (where he met Julie). Len suggested that I contact Pavel and read his books Beyond Stretching, Beyond Crunches and Power to the People. I contacted Pavel and was delighted to learn that he and Julie were going to be in Albuquerque in a few days, which gave me just enough time to peruse his books.

As Len said, Pavel is a fascinating character (he calls himself the "Evil Russian") and is obviously very intelligent. He's been in this country for less than a decade but speaks perfect English, which he puts to good use telling corny Russian jokes - and speaking and writing about his groundbreaking and iconoclastic ideas. Not only does Pavel know the Russian strength training secrets, he's also well-versed in American methods, having read everything he can get his hands on while in this country. Even though he is down on bodybuilding - he believes in making muscles harder, stronger and more functional, but not necessarily bigger - we got along fine. He may not be interested in building huge muscles, but rock-hard, chiseled abs are definitely on his agenda. He advocates short, focused, free-weight workouts - would you believe only two exercises, the dead lift and side press, for two sets of five reps or less. Pavel believes that isolation exercises are a waste of time and may even be dangerous.

I learned a lot from Pavel's books and video, and plan to use many of his ideas in my own workouts, especially the nontraditional ab exercises described in Beyond Crunches (we have the DVD in stock).  We believe you're going to be hearing a lot about Pavel, in the fitness magazines and in the mainstream media.  Remember, you heard it here first.

(For more details on Pavel's books and his DVDs see our recommended books on our "products" page.  We carry Power to the People (book and DVD), Beyond Bodybuilding (book), Relax Into Stretch (DVD) and Beyond Crunches (DVD)

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Ripped Enterprises, 528 Chama, N.E., Albuquerque, New Mexico 87108, (505) 266-5858, e-mail cncbass@aol.com, FAX (505) 266-9123.  Office hours:  Monday-Friday, 8-5, Mountain time.

Copyrightę2000 Clarence and Carol Bass. All rights reserved.