Friday, 27 March 2009

Grip Documentary

Rex 'The Natural' Hubbard has started something with the idea of a documentary on grip. The idea of our very iron iconic grip version of Bodybuildings Pumping Iron (a must see for Iron Game fans) or Power Unlimited - the powerlifting documentary is very exciting indeed.

There are a bunch of suggestions floating around. That we need to include something of the history of the sport goes without saying. But looking back at Pumping Iron they kinda covered that in the title sequence. Images of Sandow flexing and old time lifters doing muscle control. We might need a little more but it's a 50-50 thing. One needs to show what we do but Joe Public - our hoped for grip newbies doesn't want an hour of Warren Tetting making grippers. Yet, as with others, Warren's roll is important. There is a balance to be struck and it will be a difficult one.

What else do we need to show? Perhaps a few feats of strength. In the last day or so Rex suggested showing how what was once the pinnacle of grip strength for many - the closing of a Ironmind Captains of Crush (still impossible for some) - is now no longer quite the task it once was. I know how disappointed I was, after a year of trying, to miss my first certification attempt at Pullum Sports. Yet I offered to send Rex a clip of me doing a close upside down - hanging from a power rack using inversion boots and smiling all the while at the camera. Another has me literally crush a credit card between the handles. So what was once a monstrous lift is no longer so.

Interviews, voice overs (I'd personally do this quite a bit if I was running the show so as to get as many videos and filmed segments on as possible) and the historical section will form, I think, most of the early part of the film. The later section is, it seems, going to consist of a little battle royal build up between myself and Chad Woodhall (ie: best current British and European champ vs the undefeated US guy) as well as other lifters at Chad's big money (for grip it is) event.

Now, as you'd imagine, this is a big deal for me. My oh so fragile (ahem) ego loves the idea of being a part of the video never mind a potentially BIG part. With this in mind and as part of the crazy three events training I am currently doing (7-10 times a week) Paul Savage has been taping some stuff for me. With good short sharp editing, loads of hard rock music and the usual wizardry of the digital age to our amateur efforts I'm hoping Rex and Eddie (his cohort in the video department) might be able to find some useful stuff from our feeble recordings and use them in the grip version of Arnold vs. Louis. So I've been pushing myself real hard to give Paul something he can film. The aim, if it's usable, will be to show that the grip guys (in Chad and myself representing everyone else) train as hard as any high level athlete and especially those in the iron game.

But more than anything if the film succeeds it wont be because I or anyone else in our sport did a rep with X weight on whatever grip gadgets we use (see Joe 'X' pinch, squeeze etc) it'll be the capturing of the essence. It needs to show the hard work and tenacity, the sweat, the skin and yes the blood lost. The occasional nausea and the borderline obsession (perhaps not so borderline). It can and I hope will raise the profile of the sport as a whole here, in Europe, in Australia and of course in the US of A. It can and I hope will make some of us into little stars.

The more of the grip troops involved and playing a part in what has the potential to be our iconic moment the better. I'll paraphrase a famous saying:

'Ask not how you'll be entertained by what's on your screen but what part you played in getting it there'.

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