You’ll see the term used all over social media by trainers and coaches, many of whom first learning it from Ben Patrick (Knees Over Toes Guy) and the Athletic Truth Group (ATG). The problem with new and undefined language is that it is greatly open to interpretation. We here at Freak Athlete did not coin the phrase, but would love to share with you our interpretation and why you would want to begin down the path of becoming “bulletproof”.
As silly as it may seem to point out, becoming bulletproof is not meant to be interpreted literally. Regardless of how much training you put in you will never become physically invincible, let alone become immune to firearms.
The way we see it, the more mobile we become, the better movement quality we can achieve. The better movement quality we can achieve, the stronger we can potentially become through greater ranges of motion. The stronger we become through full ranges of motion, the more effectively we will be able to build functional muscle mass and connective tissue strength. The better we become at all of this, the less likely we are to become injured.
Understandably, using the term “bulletproofing” is much more sexy and much less of a mouthful than the above breakdown. It was very smart marketing on Ben’s part to continue using this phrase to the point “bulletproofing” and ATG have become synonymous with each other. Although I’m certain creating new modern vocabulary was not his objective, he was simply trying to improve lives one knee at a time.
This all can be traced back to the late Charles Poliquin – one of the most successful strength coaches of all time with Olympic medaling athletes in over 20 sports through the 80s, 90s, and 2000s. Charles was a pioneer in creating world class training protocols and producing results that proved that through strength training, we can build our bodies and protect our joints.
His ideas on training the knee were explored in the 2010’s by a young Ben Patrick, who was looking for knee pain solution so he could play basketball pain free – a dream he was chasing from his teen’s to his 20’s. Charles once said “the knee that can go furthest and be strongest over the toe has the least chance of knee pain and injury”. This set off a metaphorical lightbulb in Ben’s head and the rest has been Ben’s story to share with the world.
The ability to express our bodies' abilities in life and sport without restriction used to be a luxury of the youth, but now more accessible to the general population than ever before.
A pro athlete may be able to extend their 7-figure per year career for another 3 years. A mom of 4 facing knee surgeries may get the opportunity to play with their kids pain free as they grow up. An elderly veteran may be able to live independently for many more years because they can physically take care of themselves and manage their living space. Bulletproofing is not just for athletes, its for everyone who wants to improve their quality of life.
One day we hope the question shifts from “what is bulletproofing” to “why wouldn’t you want to be bulletproof."
Next week, we will be going over one of the most important concepts for beginning your bulletproofing journey – “building from the ground up”.
P.s. if you're looking for equipment to start your bulletproofing journey. We'd invite you to check out our best sellers by clicking on this link here.