This paper highlights the environmental influences on the physical constitution of athletes, especially track and field athletes.
The first part deals with the fact that the physical constitution, the physical health at the age of 6 to 15 years is threatened by mischief from all sides.
The second part deals with the fact that too little attention is often paid to maintaining a good physical constitution during the actual athletic career (in athletics from the age of 16).
The trigger for this article is the simple observation that, in athletics, those who are physically „talented“ are basically successful.
Simon Ehammer is a successful swiss track athlete. You look at his physique and how he moves and you understand why he is successful in athletics. Same with Mujinga Kambundji, etc. Other „people“ can train as much as they want, they will not come close to the achievements of these athletes.
Fortunately, the world is not black and white and not only the Olympic victory is of value, there are also smaller successes to celebrate.
This report is about what everyone can do and pay attention to so that he or she can get to where he or she can get to (potential development) at the age of 20-35. Because the ways to get off the path are many today in the modern, western civil society.
So this article is about the deviation from the optimum of the physical development of a human being, which is why the title is provocatively called „Degeneration.“
One cannot improve one’s genetic starting position. At least not today, maybe in future. If you become 1.80m, you become 1.80m. If you have long legs, you have long legs.
But you can deteriorate your physical constitution very well. Be it through deterioration of posture, signs of wear and tear, bad posture, imbalances, etc.
Let’s look at top athletes. What characterizes their physical constitution, how do they move?
Playful, light-footed, elegant, effortless, powerful, full of energy, efficient, agile, are the attributes attributed to such athletes.
Where does this come from?
Genetic predisposition + environmental influence on gene expression that promotes rather than restricts physical constitution.
The promotion of genetic predisposition will be discussed later. First, we will highlight the environmental influences that can have a negative effect.
Negative Influencing Factors
Negative Influencing Factors are potential influencing factors that prevent us from realizing the potential we were born with. So it is practically about how much we deteriorate our starting position before we even start a training that would be aimed at a performance.
(Future) top athletes move relatively free of „civilizational degeneration symptoms by the age of 15.“ While all the rest of the human race is wickedly phrased „crippled.“
What do I mean by „free of civilizational degenerative symptoms“?
Observe people between the ages of 15 and 40 on the street. How many people you see in everyday life that do not move like „original peoples“ move (in Africa, in South America). The upright, elegant walk of a Masai, look for that once in a city in the shopping street. What you will see are so called vulture necks, hunched shoulders (computer screen position), humps, unstable hips, flat buttocks, knees that bend inwards (especially in women), feet that bend inwards and so on.
Let’s go one step further. Let’s ask – in our minds – a school class of 14 year olds, who are walking past us, to put their backpacks aside and jog at medium to high speed 400m straight ahead… Can you feel my disillusionment when I watch these youngsters putting one foot in front of the other in any way but in a way that has anything to do with elegance or efficiency?
Now, in conclusion, mentally ask any number of 30-year-old passers-by to jog 400m. The picture will be even worse than with the young people.
Now we transfer ourselves mentally to Nigeria, Kenya or Uganda and imagine again about 20 young people and 30 adults running and jogging. Who would win the team duel? The Swiss or the others?
If you take 1000 Swiss youngsters, you might discover 1 Simon Ehammer (if you are lucky). If you take 1000 youngsters from the African continent, I bet you’ll see more „athletic talent.“
Preliminarily, this observation has nothing to do with physique or „race“. My point is that in regions of the world where young people’s bodies are allowed to develop more natural, more athletic potential is retained. This is usually the case in Africa, South and Central America (Caribbean). And statistically there live more people with dark skin color. For the sake of easy readability, I won’t get into laboriously long politically hyper-correct formulation attempts about the appearance of people of different origins. I like you all, believe me, and so on with the text:
There are Asians who run 100m in 10 seconds. There is a white boy with red hair, Matthew Boling, who recently became the first track and field athlete to win 100m, 200m and both relays at the U.S. U20 Continental Championships. Julien Wanders and Jacob Ingebrigtsen can win against african runners. The trend we see of more dark skinned athletes celebrating success in athletics is, in my opinion, the result of more white people living in the 1st world where athletic talent is being destroyed by civil society.
What do those who have disproportionate success do – or conversely, what do they just not do?
- They don’t wear shoes from the age of 5.
- They don’t wear shoes with hard soles, but if they wear shoes at all, they wear sandals, moccasins or other soft/open shoes.
- They don’t go to school/training from the age of 6 until 15, 18, or 25 and sit in a chair for 20-40 hours.
- They eat less industrially produced food.
- Children and young people move more in their free time and have more free time – they also dance more. (Dancing has something to do with body awareness).
Especially between the ages of 6 and 15, we expose children in Western civilization to stress with shoes, schooling and industrially produced food, which sets degenerative developments in motion. We are moving away from what would be natural/“normal.“
This is particularly evident in middle and long distance running, but also in sprinting. People from the 1st world are deliberately, actively and without remorse blocking the future for their offspring. Every (sports) shoe, every school day with more than 3 hours of sitting and every junkfood-meal is a drop in the bucket until the stone or the athlete is only lukewarm when the sports career is to begin. Meanwhile Africans walk barefoot or in light shoes until the age of 15, have to endure less school lessons in sitting (only the sitting is the problem, not the lessons) and their everyday life is not characterized by industrial food.
What children are drilled to sit quietly, be still, and praised for not making their presence known? Children of the 1st world. The step from a well-behaved, well-adjusted wallflower to a self-confident athlete is made unnecessarily difficult for these children by such an educational culture.
Until the age of about 15 years it is decided who has experienced how much negative deviation from a normal development of his physical constitution.
Negative deviations have two consequences: On the one hand, one is already no longer recognized as an athletic „talent“ (although with a little care one might become one again) and on the other hand, the risk increases that sooner or later injuries and signs of wear and tear will occur because the body no longer moves naturally.
Some of this can be fixed if the caregiver(s) (coach, parents, environment) and the athlete are aware of this issue. But usually this awareness is missing, that the body you have in front of you is not the optimal playing field for an athletic training, but should be taken care of healthy first or parallel to the training (flexibility, mobility, statics, trunk muscles, adhesions etc.).
As a rule, however, one simply takes every young person as he or she is at the moment and also judges his or her potential accordingly. Those who can’t move (anymore) are no longer (equally) considered and promoted. What you have in front of you at large youth events is practically the amount of young people who have made it through the filter of civilization’s degeneration mechanisms relatively unscathed. Those who then make it into adulthood have come through really well or have consciously nurtured and preserved their bodies.
I would like to take out sprinting as an example.
Sitting in school classes (or at home in front of a mobile phone) leads to:
- shortened hip flexors (illiacus, psoas and tensor fasciae latae)
- decreased blood supply to the back thigh muscles
- weakening of the gluteal muscles
- weakening of the trunk muscles
- curved back
- vulture neck
Shoes with a thick sole and a drop of more than 10mm lead to:
- weakening of the entire foot musculature
- impaired functioning of the soleus, gastrocnemius and tibialis anterior antagonists
- more frequent ligament injuries due to buckling
- lordosis position of the lumbar vertebrae (back pain)
- overloading of the anterior thigh muscles
A youth with fast muscle fibers in the statistically fastest 5% will still be recognized as a talent despite these circumstances. The danger with him/her is that injuries are imminent (imbalances, shortening) and that stride length may be insufficient for real top results.
Someone with fast muscle fibers in the statistically next fastest 10% (i.e. from 85 – 95%) may no longer be classified as „talented“ because he can no longer get his speed onto the ground or the track due to weak trunk and/or buttock muscles, as well as weak foot muscles.
This symptomatology becomes even more obvious in the technical disciplines with still very high genetic requirements like high, long and triple jump. Who already experiences a disadvantage in sprinting due to the fact that his physical constitution was impaired until adolescence, how should such an athlete survive 10 years of triple jump career in good health until he would reach his performance maximum at the age of 25?
Another example is the pole vault. Here, degenerative developments are usually discovered late, in the stagnation phases. Pole vaulting has first of all, except for a level of about 4.30m for women and 5.30m for men, no superior genetic component. With a good coach and diligence, a lot can be achieved. If the athlete is also healthy, he can go even higher without obvious genetic luck. If, on the other hand, the athlete is not free of degenerative symptoms, the risk of injury or wear and tear will increase because the body has not functioned optimally over the years while the training intensity has steadily increased.
Writing this, it occurs to me that I fall into this category. I have relatively fast muscles, but not so fast that I could have ever run under 10.60s (I was around 11.00s). I had many strains of the biceps femoris, as a result of the degenerative processes described above (sitting, shortening). I had Achilles tendon problem from 22 on, as a result of the degenerative processes described above (footwear). Thus, I did not progress in performance development from the age of 24, because wear and tear had increasingly tied me back (Achilles tendon surgery and patella surgery). Like me it happened and happens to many athletes, who are in the age of 15-23 years with full commitment to the thing, but – because nobody tells them, or because too little attention is paid to it – have a blind spot when it comes to the effects of degenerative processes.
Continuation of this report follows…
In the following we will talk about how the training itself can trigger degenerative processes, can affect the physical constitution and what has to be considered that this does not happen if possible.