There’s a sense among the general population that a minimum amount of equipment is required to get stronger or increase performance. For all of the reasons that people procrastinate when it comes to getting to their workouts, not having enough time, equipment or resources ranks at the top of the list. I’ve always had a certain fascination with people that were able to make improvements in disadvantaged scenarios and prison inmates are perfect example of that.
Let me start by responding to the two points that made up half of the almost 1,000 comments on this YouTube video; 1.) the prisoners aren’t really that jacked to begin with and it’s just a myth and 2.) because steroids. Yes the average prison inmate is probably not that much stronger than anyone you would find at any gym anywhere else but every correctional officer can will recall one or two inmates that they had dealt with who were much larger, much stronger and much more fit than even the ‘strong guys’ in the general population. My main interest is on them, how they managed to accomplish that with, what anybody would agree, is a minimum amount of equipment and nutrition. As to the steroid comment, of course steroids are a factor as are any other drug or contraband substance that finds its way into prisons. But steroid use is ubiquitous in general gym culture and is certainly not more prevalent inside prison than it is outside.
I mentioned in the video and I’ll repeat it here; Josh Bryant has made a successful brand (Jailhouse Strong) off of this very phenomenon. An educated man who mentored under Dr. Squat, Fred Hatfield, Josh does an excellent job of marrying the formal science of strength training with the cultural realities around it. Simply put, strength is necessary to those who want to be useful. Being strong and conditioned can benefit you and your day-to-day life but it can also insulate you from circumstances that might otherwise pose a risk to yourself or your loved ones. For this reason, he often includes the hashtag #gasstationready which is a reminder that something as simple as gassing up your car can lead to a face-to-face encounter with someone who might wish you harm.Continue reading “How Do Prison Inmates Get BIG, STRONG and JACKED?”