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Karl Gotch bible: exaggerated claims?


New member
Hi folks,

my name is Norbert, I'm 49 years old and a Senshido full instructor (Senshido is a Canadian reality-based self-defense style). Almost 20 years ago, I started training "seriously", first using calisthenics (Matt Furey is the one to blame here), later adding kettlebells.

In self-protection scenarios, one of the most important things is having enough gas in the tank because the adrenaline dump can deplete your reserves pretty much instantly. I found out that old-school catch-wrestling calisthenics and prison workouts (hundreds of reps per day) work for me, and I really like them.

This is where it get interesting. Wrestling god Karl Gotch used something he called "the bible":

"Karl Gotch bible"
regular 52 card deck
clubs = Hindu jump squats
spades = Hindu squats
hearts = hindu pushups
diamonds = half moon pushups
joker 1 = 40 hindu squats
joker 2 = 20 hindu pushups

red cards: do as many reps as the card shows, aces=11, faces=10
black cards: do twice as many reps as the card shows; aces=22; faces=20

Shuffle the cards, then draw one, do the reps, next one till you're finished

If I'm correct, that's 115 hindu pushups, 95 half moon pushups, 230 hindu squats and 190 hindu jump squats.

The interesting thing is that you stand up before drawing a new card, this enhances the conditioning effect.

A week ago, I started using calisthenics, isos and strandpulling exclusively again, after a long stint with kettlebells. Of course, to honor Karl Gotch, I'm doing the Gotch Bible every day.

Yesterday, with ample rest, it took me 31:37 minutes to complete the whole deck.
That's 630 reps in total, or 3 seconds per rep. This includes getting to the floor for pushups, and standing back up again to draw a new card.

And just yesterday, I read someone's post online (not here, though), claiming he had finished the Gotch Bible in 15 minutes straight. HOW? That's 1.4 seconds per rep, including lying down and getting up.

Is this possible?

Greetings from Germany,

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