Nordic Curls are King! A Letter to My 18-Year-Old Self

Nordic Curls are King! A Letter to My 18-Year-Old Self

If I could travel back in time and whisper some wisdom into the ear of my 18-year-old self, top of the list would be the advice to embrace Nordic curls. Sure, at 18, I was all about becoming bigger, faster, and stronger. And yes, my first attempt at a Nordic curl during a team workout was, frankly, a bit of a disaster. There I was, barely a quarter of the way down, when my hamstrings seized up so fiercely that even my strength coach gave up on making me do them after a while.

It wasn’t until seven years later, armed with a newfound dedication and the original Nordstick, that I managed to complete my first true Nordic curl. So here are the five nuggets of wisdom I wish I could have given my younger self back in 2014, which would have shaved years off my learning curve.


1. Consistency is Key

Back in the day, the options were limited: use a hefty barbell, struggle with a smith machine, or rely on a partner—which for me meant inevitable calf cramps and discouragement. If only I had something as simple and effective as the Nordstick then, there would've been no excuses. The lesson? Keep at the Nordics, no matter what.

2. Slow and Steady Wins the Race

The real secret sauce to mastering the Nordic curl is to take it slow. Seriously slow. Embrace the pace where you can maintain control, and wherever you find yourself speeding up, that's your cue to pause and apply some assistance to keep things steady.

3. Don't Underestimate Isometric Holds

Find that sticky point in your curl? Good. Now hold it there for a second or two. It’s not about stroking your ego but about fortifying those weak spots. Over time, extend those pauses—strength will follow.

4. Break it Down and Assist

Start with perfecting a ¼ rep before moving on to ½, and so on. This gradual progression helps build incredible control which is tough but oh-so-effective. Using some form of assistance, like the nordspotter, can really help nail down the technique in those early stages.

5. Map It Out and Stick to It

Begin with 2-3 sets of 3-5 reps once or twice a week. Slowly build this up over 3-4 weeks as you work toward a full Nordic. Yes, you'll fail repeatedly, but each failure is a stepping stone to success. And once you nail that first full rep? Keep pushing. Five reps, then ten, then add some weight. The journey never really stops.

So, to anyone out there looking to enhance their fitness, whether you're 18 or 58, don’t put off starting your Nordic curl journey. Use these strategies to not only better your Nordic curl but also to dramatically improve your life. Embrace the challenge, and who knows? Maybe you’ll find yourself writing a letter to your younger self one day, too.

Embrace the journey, grab a Nordstick, and transform your workout routine – and your life. 

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