"Achieved Personal and Team Success
I Could Only Dream About Before!"
"Yunus’ knowledge of improving hockey performance has helped me in ways I didn’t know existed when we first started working together.
In just one year of training with him, my strength and speed have improved dramatically!
As a direct result of this, I now have more time and space on the ice, which allow me to better showcase my hockey skills.
Following Yunus' off-ice training programs, I achieved personal and team success I could only dream about before - I won gold at the World Junior Championships, earned Most Valuable Player honors in the Finnish U20 Elite League, and was drafted into the NHL by the 2016 Stanley Cup champions."
- Kasper Björkqvist
Finland Men's National Team
2016 U20 World Champion
2015-2016 MVP, Best Forward & All-Star, Finnish U20 Elite League
Skinny Junior Player Transforms Into
Strong and Explosive Hockey Pro
"Growing up, I had little experience lifting weights.
Sure, we had team gym workouts a couple of times per week from the U16 level up. But the weights were light and coaching was non-existent. Add to that tons of long-distance running, and you could call it your typical junior team training: lots of activity without noticeable results. I was weak and skinny.
Things changed radically when I started training with Yunus at age 17.
Almost immediately, I noticed that I was gaining strength and muscle at a fast rate. It was great to see my progress in the gym carry over to the ice: my skating got more powerful and I felt a lot stronger in puck battles.
The first two years in the juniors, we focused on getting stronger. Once my strength reached a certain level, we began emphasizing speed and power methods that better transfer to the pro game.
Consequently, my playing style turned more physical. As a defensive defender, I learned how to use my body to remove opponents from the puck with efficiency. There’s no doubt in my mind that the strength and muscle I built in the weight room plays a big part in that.
I really like how Yunus’ training centers around the major barbell lifts like squats and power cleans. These exercises build the foundation for hockey performance. At the same time, there’s also enough variety so you don’t get bored doing the same stuff over and over.
Would I recommend Yunus to other hockey players? Absolutely.
Too many guys obsess about aerobic conditioning (especially the VO2max bike test) and fail to reach their full potential as an athlete because their strength and power is not up to snuff.
I believe any athlete who wants to get faster and more explosive will benefit from Yunus’ training program."
- Nikolas Matinpalo
Ilves Tampere, Finnish Elite League
10-Year NHL/AHL Veteran Packs on the Leg Gains,
Fixes Messed Up Hips and Adds Another Gear to His Skating
"As someone who has wanted to play the game for as long as I could (10 years and counting), I had always been interested in training and nutrition.
My big problem was that I had always erred on the side of doing too much. I would spend hours going through grueling off-season workouts. Then I felt wiped out, both physically and mentally, from all that volume by the end of the summer.
Another issue was my weight and how it affected my speed. In the past, when training to get bigger and stronger, my shot felt great… but I felt a bit too heavy on the ice. So I was hesitant to really push myself with heavy lifting because I thought it would take away from my agility and quickness.
Yunus’ program really opened my eyes to what you can achieve by focusing on the quality of training rather than the quantity. It’s the first time I have gotten stronger by doing LESS. In fact, I don't think my lower body has ever been this strong.
I think we struck a perfect balance of making gains yet feeling fresh every day. I should also mention that my hips have never felt this healthy thanks to all the lifting, jumping and hip mobility work Yunus had me do. This is extremely valuable for me as I have had my fair share of adductor/groin trouble throughout the years.
I learned that smart training is all about quality volume, which is why I got better results than ever before. Another big realization was that getting bigger and faster go hand in hand when your off-ice workouts are dialed in. I felt faster on the track and when I got back on the ice, I was able to change directions and get going quicker. Everything just felt smoother.
I really liked how organized the whole off-season plan was and that Yunus tailored it specifically to my needs as an older player. Even though the coaching took place online, his specific instructions removed all the guesswork, which made the entire process even smoother than I expected. He answered all my questions about training, nutrition, supplementation and recovery in great detail.
The only reason I wouldn’t recommend Yunus is because he’s the best kept secret right now in hockey strength and conditioning. Jokes aside, I believe every single hockey player will enjoy and get better on his program."
- Zach Redmond
EHC München, DEL
2018-2019 AHL Best Defenseman
2021-2022 DEL Defenseman of the Year
133 NHL Games
From Back-Up Goalie to
Best Goaltender Award and All-Star in One Season
"I used to believe that goalies don't need to lift weights.
In fact, some goalie coaches had told me gaining upper body strength and size would be detrimental for my game because it would slow me down when stopping the puck with my arms.
That's why I had focused mostly on goalie technique and speed drills when training on my own.
At the same time, I also realized that I wasn't physically strong enough to play the game at a high level.
That soon changed when I started following Yunus' programs!
My body has matured physically a lot during the time I've been training with him.
I've gained muscle all over my body, my shoulders got broader, I got leaner, and my strength levels went through the roof.
As a result of all that, my on-ice performance improved tremendously.
I'm now much more explosive on the ice.
More agile in the crease.
Faster and able to get into a better position on rebounds.
Moving laterally and squaring up to the shooter feels effortless now thanks to all the lower body and core strength gains I've made.
Training under Yunus is intense and demanding. But at the same time, we have a fun, motivating atmosphere at the gym.
The best part is that he always comes up with new exercise variations that keep things fresh and interesting in addition to the tried and true heavy barbell lifts.
I've learned so many movements I had never even seen before, yet I feel they've benefited my performance immensely.
Here are a few key training lessons I've taken to heart:
- If you want progress, you MUST train hard. The competition isn’t resting on their laurels, so you've got to show up and put in the work every day to succeed.
- Going to the gym and just lifting some weights isn’t enough. You need a solid, quality program to really experience big gains.
- Unlike what I used to believe in the past, strength training is extremely important for goalies.
You need 100% focus and effort off the ice if you want to get ahead on the ice. You have the greatest window for progress in the off-season, so don't miss it by being lazy or doing things that don't improve your performance.
- Even when on-ice training takes priority during the season, you shouldn’t stop lifting heavy. It's the only way to improve all year long.
To any hockey player reading this, I highly recommend Yunus and his training methods. Not only is he a great strength coach, he's a great person as well."
- Filip Lindberg
2021 NCAA Champion
2021 NCAA Hockey East Champion
2019 U20 World Champion
2017-2018 Second Team All-Star, Finnish U20 Elite League
2016-2017 Best Goaltender & First Team All-Star, Finnish U18 Elite League
Weak and Chubby Junior Player Revamps Training & Diet
– and Goes Pro!
"Looking back, I wasn't living the athletic lifestyle in my junior years.
My diet was bad, I ate too much and skated around with 20 extra pounds.
Things weren't much better in the gym, either. There was no system and no progression behind what I was doing. I pretty much repeated the same 4x12 workout over and over.
Training with Yunus got me on the right track. Straight away I noticed how fun proper lifting is and how it benefits hockey performance.
Now, after 4 years of working with him, I have leaned out, my strength has gone way up and there's some real power behind my skating stride.
Whereas I never felt that long-distance running helped my game, Yunus' workouts turned me into a better hockey player.
Thanks to the progress I have made in the gym, I'm more confident on the ice. Now that my strength and power have increased, I no longer shy away from attempting things that were out of my reach just a while ago.
As a smaller, fast-twitch defenseman who relies on skating speed, I'm able to close the gap and win 1-on-1 battles against bigger guys. Puck protection using my body is another area where I see clear improvement.
I also have to say that I really like the atmosphere in our small summer training group. Even on days where you feel off walking in - maybe you had a bad night's sleep or feel irritated for whatever reason - your mood quickly turns around once you get under the bar.
Yunus makes sure that training quality remains high every day and movements are done cleanly, and he constantly pushes us athletes to reach higher ground and new personal bests.
Would I recommend him to other hockey players? For sure.
It's simple: If you want results, go talk to Yunus."
- Tom Grönblom
Jukurit Mikkeli, Finnish Elite League
2020-2021 First Team All-Star, Finnish U20 Elite League
"I Got a Lot Stronger, Lost Excess Belly Fat,
and Took Several Steps Forward as an Athlete..."
"The biggest change on Yunus’ 1-on-1 coaching program involved tracking calories and gym progress, which I had never done before.
Thanks to fixing my lifting technique and diet, and following his well-designed workouts, I got a lot stronger, lost excess belly fat, and took several steps forward as an athlete.
In hindsight, my nutrition habits weren’t suitable for a high-performing hockey player.
I thought I was eating quality food but in reality, my meals contained a ton of starchy carbs and were missing vegetables, berries and fruits.
During the process, I learned that you can train and play just fine eating proteins and salad. You don’t need a ton of carbs to make progress.
In the gym, I now understand the importance of tempo and how quality beats quantity of work.
The only concern I had before working with Yunus was financial. But his coaching provided excellent value for the money I invested.
The entire process ran smoothly from beginning to end and I would recommend him to other hockey players, no question.
I learned a ton and improved by leaps, so thank you for that!"
- Karri Forsblom
France National Team Forward Adds 5 Kg of Quality Mass,
Shatters Lifting PRs and Unlocks Next Level Leg Power
"I used to think I knew a little bit about training. But already the first workout with Yunus revealed some major gaps in my knowledge about lifting weights for hockey performance. Exercise technique, squat depth, the importance of tempo, and doing quality work were just a few of the many things he taught me.
I really liked how Yunus adjusts training loads based on bar speed and how an athlete feels during a session. On days when the weights moved fast, he pushed me past my previous limits. It’s a special feeling taking a weight you’re unsure you can handle and lifting it without problem. If I caught a bad day, we’d go lighter and work on technique. This made sure we never wasted a workout.
Gaining quality mass had always been a big problem for me. Looking back, I was eating pretty healthy but not nearly enough to pack on muscle. Yunus put me on a diet where I was slamming down 4,000+ calories per day and I gained 5 kilograms over the summer.
Even though I’m now 5 kg heavier, my legs feel a lot more powerful. I notice a big difference in my speed when I do sprints on the field or on the ice.
I would definitely recommend Yunus to other hockey players simply because of the results he delivered. In the past, if I managed to add 5-10 kg to my main lifts in the off-season, I would consider it a big win. This summer some of my lifts went up by 25 kg which has never happened before."
- Bastien Maia
France National Team
Skinny Junior Player Adds 242 Pounds to His Lifts in a Single Summer
– and Obtains a D1 College Scholarship!
"My training was in a major slump for the past three years.
Since I have always had trouble gaining strength and muscle, lifting light weights and doing a bunch of resistance band exercises got me nowhere. I ended my junior career a weak and skinny player.
With my sights set on playing D1 hockey, I knew I wouldn't be able to compete at the next level unless I changed my workouts. So I contacted Yunus to help me prepare for the demands of the college game.
That paid off big time. Here's how my gym numbers improved this off-season:
- Squat 100 kg / 220 pounds -> 135 kg / 297 pounds (+35 kg / +77 pounds)
- Bench Press 80 kg / 176 pounds -> 110 kg / 242 pounds (+30 kg / +66 pounds)
- Chin-Up 25 kg / 55 pounds -> 45 kg / 99 pounds (+20 kg / +44 pounds)
- Hang Power Clean 75 kg / 165 pounds -> 100 kg / 220 pounds (+25 kg / +55 pounds)
Once I got back on the ice after the summer break, I immediately noticed how much more explosive my first steps felt.
I'm an elastic athlete by nature but have always lacked the strength to take advantage of it. Now I feel like there's some real power behind my skating stride. It's also a confidence booster to know I can hold my own in board battles.
Another big issue I had in the past was my diet. I wasn't eating enough food to grow and I wasn't paying too much attention to food quality.
After Yunus took me to the grocery store and taught me what, when and how much to eat, and made me track my calories and macros, I understood how to eat for continued strength and muscle gains.
I believe it's a major reason my lifts shot up this summer. I was finally fueling my body with the right types and amounts of food.
I also learned that brief gym sessions can lead to excellent progress. Whereas in the past I would pummel through workouts that lasted up to 3.5 hours, this summer some sessions took under an hour to complete. Yet my results were way better than before.
Needless to say, I would recommend Yunus' training methods to other hockey players. Any athlete who trains under him will learn how to lift properly and make great strides in their physical performance.
One last thing I want to point out: You can speed up your overall development as an athlete and get to the next level in your career a year or two earlier if you start quality off-ice training at a young age and take it seriously.
Looking back, I should have reached out to Yunus already a couple of years ago. I believe it would have gotten me to where I am today a lot faster."
- Julius Janhonen
American International College, NCAA D1
Power Forward Plays Best Season of His Career
and Wins National Championship
"Before Yunus’ program, I had no idea how to train.
I would look up hockey-specific exercises on Instagram or those NHL off-season workouts you see on YouTube and try to mimic them.
My upper body was so weak I couldn’t even do chin-ups. I viewed them as a waste of my time, so I focused on squats and other lower body exercises.
If my muscles felt sore after the gym, I chalked it up as a great workout.
I had no plan and no structure; I was training by feel. Every week I tried something different because I thought you have to shock the muscle to grow.
But I didn’t see any results from all the hard work I was putting in with weights. Training felt boring.
Then I saw the videos Yunus was posting on Instagram. His system seemed to be working for the athletes he was coaching and I realized getting stronger would help me get a lot better on the ice.
So I contacted Yunus for an opportunity to train with him over the summer.
While I did have some financial concerns at first, I can now say it was all worth it:
Yunus' training helped me physically prepare for the best season of my career.
As a power forward whose game is all about being strong in front of the net and in the corners, the leg strength I gained really helped my performance.
I suddenly had an extra step when turning or accelerating, my straight line speed improved a lot, and I feel so much stronger holding on to the puck.
My stamina also got a massive boost. Whereas before, my legs would get exhausted in the third period, I now feel great in the last minutes of a game and can easily play another period if needed.
And thanks to all the upper body strength I gained, battling in front of the net got a lot easier. I can just park myself in front of the goalie, sit a little deeper, and the defender won’t be able to push me away.
It’s not an exaggeration when I say Yunus’ coaching opened a whole new world to me.
His training and nutrition plan really worked for me and I finally saw progress, which is what all athletes want.
Looking good in the mirror is a nice bonus but when you see your lifts go up by 20, 30, or more kilograms it makes you go “Wow!” and makes training so much more fun.
It’s the same thing as with hockey; if you score 10 goals this season you want to score 20 next year. You want to get better and by seeing your numbers improve is how you know you’re getting better in the gym.”
- Jasper Nordemann
Dutch Men's National Team
2021-2022 Dutch Champion
Off-Season Gains Make
Pro Hockey Player Stronger and Faster
"I followed a 3-day per week, full-body training program Yunus designed for me this off-season.
I really enjoyed all the variation in exercise selection and execution that he includes in his programs. It helps keep your training fresh and interesting over time.
With other workout plans, you might end up doing the same three or four movements for months on end. That becomes boring real fast.
Another thing I noticed was how quickly my strength increased. Within just a few short weeks, I was lifting notably bigger weights compared to the beginning of the summer.
And at the end of the off-season I set multiple lifetime personal records, including new bests in 3RM front squats and power cleans.
Based on pre-season games and practices so far, I'm also feeling faster on the ice.
So you could say I'm very happy with my results since gaining strength and speed is exactly what I wanted to achieve with my off-season training."
- Teemu Väyrynen
TPS Turku, Finnish Elite League
Finland U20 National Team
"I Have Seen Many Coaches Train Their NHL Players and
Compared to Yunus' Workouts It's a Joke!"
"I had always been interested in off-ice training but it’s not easy as a 16-year-old to read up on things and figure it out on your own.
Add to that you have a different coach at your club every year telling something different; it gets so confusing you don't know what to believe.
While I thought I was pretty strong and in decent shape, I couldn’t figure out how it is possible that I’m not able to lift very heavy and I’m not that explosive when I train so hard and give it my best.
I suffered a lot of injuries playing junior hockey. Something I can now track back to not training correctly off the ice.
When your hockey season isn’t going well despite working your ass off, and then you get injured on top of it, it not only takes a toll on your body but also gets hard to handle mentally.
You’re working so hard but not getting anywhere. It feels like your competition is getting further ahead no matter what you do.
The results never matched my effort in the gym. It used to frustrate the hell out of me.
Once I joined Yunus' off-season training group, I learned what lifting and eating to improve sports performance is really about. It made me realize I had been doing everything wrong before.
Right away, I could tell I'm dealing with a professional based on how Yunus talks and explains the details of his program. And the results his athletes get speak for themselves.
He won't just give you a bunch of exercises, then turn around which is what a lot of coaches do; he's always watching and correcting everyone’s technique to make sure they lift right. Unless technique is spotless, you're not allowed to go up in weight.
Yunus fixed all my weaknesses and muscular imbalances that had been causing a lot of minor injuries over the years.
My first summer in the group, we focused on learning perfect lifting technique. I got stronger than I ever thought possible.
To be honest, I would have never thought I would gain any muscle on the low-carb diet plan Yunus designed for me.
I was scared I would feel tired all the time and wouldn’t have any energy to train but you can't argue with the results:
I lost 4-5% body fat, gained 5 kg of muscle, and I was the strongest and leanest I had ever been in my life.
The second summer, my explosiveness and speed took off like never before. I noticed it in the sprints where I felt so much faster, and my first steps also improved a ton.
Of course it’s fun when your hard work in the gym pays off. I enjoy the workouts so much more now that I’m getting stronger and gaining muscle.
I have already recommended Yunus to a bunch of my friends.
I know a lot of guys who would benefit from his coaching. What often holds them back is not their work ethic but money – what they are willing to invest in their development as an athlete.
I have had a lot of coaches and seen many strength coaches train their pro or NHL guys and compared to Yunus' workouts it's a joke, it doesn’t make any sense.
All that fancy or “special” stuff you see other trainers pushing on the internet is bullshit. Yunus showed me that if you just do the basics well and get strong, then that's all you need.
Yunus is the only trainer I have found who gets results and when you find someone like that, you shouldn’t worry about paying real money for their coaching. It’s well worth the investment."
- Adam Daadou
Kiruna AIF, J20 Elit
National Championship, All-Star Nomination and
World Championship Silver Medal - All in One Year
"Because we didn't have a professional strength and conditioning coach at the club I play for, my off-ice training used to be far from effective.
Sure, I was lifting weights but there wasn't much rhyme or reason to it. I didn't have the knowledge to optimize my workouts on my own and didn't realize how much more I could improve under the right guidance.
So, when I got the opportunity to train with Yunus in the gym, it had an instant impact on my game.
For the first time, I grasped the importance of systematic off-ice training for hockey performance. The difference proper physical preparation can make is truly eye-opening.
From a lifting standpoint, my technique got a lot better on the main barbell movements and I made solid progress from the get-go. Since our training was much more versatile and better planned than in the past, my strength went up steadily and I got in much better shape.
Very few female players understand the untapped potential they've got inside and how much further they can push themselves in training. With Yunus, I learned my limits as an athlete are well beyond what I previously thought. I now know how to train for steady progress and can demand a lot more out of myself than before.
Most importantly, everything we did in the weight room prepared me for the game. The gains I made over the last two years have carried over to the ice big time. I'm not a tall goalie but I compensate for it with my explosiveness. Speed and agility in the crease has now become one of my biggest strengths.
My game really took off this past season. Because I was in such great shape, everything just felt so much easier.
I enjoyed continued success on a personal and team level. Our club won the National Championship, I was named First All-Star, and took home a silver medal with Team Finland at the Women's World Championship.
I recommend Yunus' training programs without hesitation. His training knowledge and ability to get the most out of athletes are second to none."
- Jenna Silvonen
Finland Women's National Team
2019 IIHF World Championship Silver Medalist
2018-2019 Finnish Champion
2018-2019 First Team All-Star, Finnish Women's Elite League
Gained Strength & Speed -
No Longer Outmatched Physically by Bigger and Heavier Players
"Before I started training with Yunus, I was focusing on too many things off the ice and had hit a plateau.
I was training too often and for too long at a time (up to 9x per week in the summer for 2-3 hours per session) but didn’t feel like I was making any noticeable progress.
I had built a solid aerobic base over the years, so playing big minutes was never the problem.
Strength and explosiveness were lacking, though, which limited my game.
After I started following Yunus’ training programs, progress came by quickly and I was hitting new personal records on power cleans, front squats, weighted chin-ups, and deadlifts week after week.
Most importantly, I saw improvements in the weight room carry over onto the ice.
As a smaller player (5’7) playing against bigger and heavier guys in the juniors and now at the college level, I have no trouble holding my own in board battles.
I can protect the puck with my body a lot better and can even remove bigger opponents from the puck, which certainly wasn’t the case before.
In addition, I noticed that my balance on skates has improved a lot and I can now handle my body much better even in unstable positions.
I would highly recommend Yunus’ training methods to other hockey players. If you really want to push your physical limits and achieve results that you never expected to see, you should train under him.
Yunus has got an unparalleled passion for developing his athletes and he demands a lot from them. But his training is smart and progress happens very fast. It’s not mentally or physically easy but it’s totally worth it."
- Tuukka Totro
St. Olaf College, NCAA D3
"I Will Follow My Dream of Playing Pro Hockey
and Do Everything to Make It Happen..."
"My training used to be completely unsuitable for hockey – think long-distance runner, not hockey player.
Also had major issues with lifting techniques. My diet was alright, but sometimes I would just whip up something quick because “I didn’t have time” to cook from scratch.
At first, I had some financial concerns about joining Yunus’ coaching.
But then I realized if you truly want something, you have to invest time and money to get it.
I decided I would follow my dream of playing pro hockey and I will do everything in my power to make it happen.
My results so far: I’ve gained muscle, strength and confidence have increased, and my knowledge about training for athletic performance has gone up as well. Yunus gives clear instructions for every exercise and everything that has to do with the training program.
Despite having to change gyms a couple times during the program, I didn’t feel stressed out trying to figure things out on my own because he quickly tweaked my workouts based on what equipment I have available.
The workouts are versatile and interesting. Though what surprised me was how long you have to rest between sets when training for maximal strength.
Another thing I learned: I have to eat A LOT of calories just to hit maintenance, let alone a surplus. Now I also take the time to prep my meals on certain days, so I save time the rest of the week.
I would absolutely recommend Yunus to other athletes. I have a few friends with high ambitions in hockey and believe his coaching will take them closer to their goals."
- Viktor Heinonen
Titaanit Kotka, Suomi-Sarja
"... one of the best hockey strength coaches in the business."
"I've known Yunus for a few years now, and what struck me from the beginning was his knowledge of and passion for hockey strength and conditioning.
I remember being a bit skeptical about him at first since he never had a career as a hockey player. But I quickly realized he knows what he's talking about when it comes to making players stronger, faster and healthier.
His dedication to developing his athletes, ability to explain any drill or exercise in a training program, and tremendous coaching skills all set him apart from others and make him one of the best hockey strength coaches in the business.
I've implemented things that he has taught me with my hockey players competing for championships, and I can't thank him enough for that.
To any athlete who wants to become stronger and faster than their competition - and remain injury-free while doing so - I highly recommend Yunus' training methods."
- Mikko Tolvanen
Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Sport Vaasa, Finnish Elite League
Ex-Pro Hockey Goalie, Finnish Elite League
"In all my years of playing hockey,
Yunus is the best trainer I ever had."
"In the past, my training was very cardio-based. Yes, I was in pretty good shape, but had trouble gaining muscle or strength.
I also had underdeveloped muscles in my body - especially my lower back and obliques. Fixing these muscular imbalances helped me build a solid base and improve my overall strength.
I feel like every part of my body got better after I started working with Yunus.
Most importantly, these gains translated to better performance on the ice. Here's how Yunus' off-ice training benefited my hockey skills:
- I got more powerful, which is very important for a smaller player like me.
All the strength and muscle I gained off the ice helped with stability when battling for loose pucks in the corners. Even against bigger guys, I felt like I could physically compete head-to-head with them.
- My skating improved as well. Faster on the first few steps, my ability to push off and glide, on-ice stamina... Everything jumped up a notch or two.
- Thanks to the upper body, lower back and core strength gained in the gym, I became more dangerous on the ice as a forward with more speed and a harder shot.
Another thing worth mentioning is that I finally had a completely injury-free season.
For example, in previous years, I used to feel minor groin pain as the hockey season drew on. When I followed Yunus' training programs, that pain vanished. I believe a big part of that are all the adductor and core strengthening exercises he had me perform.
Not only are Yunus' training methods extremely effective, his attention to all the small but important details set him apart from other coaches.
In all my years of playing hockey, Yunus is the best trainer I ever had. Every day I spent with him at the gym, I learned something new.
Lifting weights, conditioning, speed, recovery - it's all there. Every single detail in Yunus' off-ice program is made to best serve hockey players. It truly is a complete training program for hockey.
- Victor Ranger
Anglet Hormadi Élite, French Division 1
France U18 National Team
"His athletes... damn strong guys...
made a big impression on me."
"Through my own experiences, I know that off-ice training usually includes little more than bike + stretching and perhaps 3 x 8 reps of light squats during a hockey season here in Norway.
I’ve always wondered what attitudes other major hockey nations have regarding in-season training off the ice.
Are there any similarities?
Do they train harder than we do?
What are they doing differently?
Could this be part of the reason why Norway is a "little brother" in the sport of ice hockey?
To figure this out, I contacted the great Finnish club Espoo Blues and their strength coach Yunus Barisik and I got the opportunity to join them for training over 4 days. A wonderful experience that made a big impression on me.
Yunus has a philosophy that although it is hockey season, it is important to have progression in strength training and that one should not be afraid to lift big weights for low repetitions.
He justifies this by saying that if we are to stop the progression through the season, how then do we become stronger? And that it is not next week’s games that they train for, but the playoffs held in March.
During my time observing Yunus and his athletes, I witnessed 17-year-old Aarne Talvitie, captain of Finland U18 national team and 2017 NHL draft prospect, perform split squats with 140 kg (!).
You’re probably thinking now that he is one in a million, but the fascinating thing is that the rest of the team was approximately at 100-120 kg. Damn strong guys all of them with tremendous lifting form.
During one of the other sessions they deadlifted 3-5 reps with several players between 180-240 kg and this they did again with very good technique."
- Oskar Thorsen
Strength and Conditioning Coach, IHK Comet Halden
Ex-Pro Hockey Player, Norway
RECREATIONAL ATHLETES & GEN POP CLIENTS
Lost Over 12 Kilograms of Fat & Stronger Than Ever -
"Man, I Should Have Done This 10 Years Ago!"
"Have been going to the gym more or less regularly since I was 15.
Started from scratch (first bench press and biceps, quite obviously) and was learning by doing, but never took the time to research much about training and nutrition. Sounds a little ridiculous from someone having a Master's degree.
For some reason I thought I knew what I was doing, because most guys at the gym were lifting less than me.
Since 2009 started eating more protein and simply just more. In the summer 2009 weighed about 83kg.
By Christmas 2010 weight was about 93-95kg. Simultaneously had gotten stronger, but probably at least half of the weight was fat.
Once I started following your methods, I came to realize that my understanding of fitness and nutrition was at kindergarden level.
Found out that with a proper training program and correct nutrition you can get the desired results within a span of a couple of months. No need to hit your head against a concrete wall and wonder why the wall does not get a headache and break.
Thinking that “I have heavy bones” or “my metabolism is quite slow, so I’ll never have a 6-pack” just shows ignorance or an unwillingness to get out of your comfort zone.
The more results I saw, the more motivated I got. Over the 6-month training program, I lost over 12 kilograms and shed 22 cm off my waist while still getting stronger.
Whatever you think you know about training and nutrition, forget it for a couple of months.
Follow Yunus’ training program and diet and you will get results that will boost your motivation and confidence.
Do not talk back, give excuses or try to be a smart ass, just do it! You can thank him and me later, once you realize the amount of eyes checking you out @ the beach has more than doubled."
Rec League Hockey Player Drops 13.5 CM Off His Waist While
Adding 15 KG to His Squat and 10 KG to His Bench Press in Just 90 Days
"I’d had a year or two working with a strength coach about 5 years ago.
However it was more a mate of a mate and the three of us would train only once a week. In fairness, given the limited time we had we both did get stronger, but obviously there was a point where we couldn’t gain much more with that volume of training.
We didn’t really talk about nutrition at all, I just saw myself as a skinny guy who was weak and assumed I just needed to eat everything - be it ordering double everything from McDonalds or whatever.
Eventually his gym closed, and I decided to buy my own gym kit. I then trained alone, taking on programs from the internet with very little success at all and my technique progressively breaking down in all lifts.
After concluding my own research about Yunus, although not the biggest following, this is what appealed to me:
Less of a marketing hype about new ‘methods’ or such and such. Just more to the point - get stronger, leaner, more athletic.
During lockdown I really watched his Instagram and Youtube posts and seeing previous athletes instilled confidence in what he had to offer. I had no doubt this is who could help with my training going forward.
The only thing I was a little concerned about before joining Yunus’ program was that I wouldn't have enough equipment at home - but this has proved not to be the case. I would say I have invested a lot into that over the years however. Other than that, once I have my mind set on something I generally go full throttle into it and see where it can take me.
Waking up and not having crippling DOMS almost every day was a huge and surprising thing for me once I started following Yunus’ workouts. I was not aware this was possible due to my lack of training knowledge.
He has compiled an incredible amount of information in the manuals he gives to clients regarding nutrition and picking weights, all things I just never thought or knew about previously. It was certainly overwhelming the first few weeks but obviously it got easier.
What did I like most about working with Yunus? Knowing I'm working with someone who has worked with athletes and has a proven track record for one.
But the most important part which I like is how particular and specific he is regarding lifting form, safety and remaining injury free is above and beyond especially for me being self employed. If I get injured, I don’t work and I don’t get paid.
This is also a reason I want to train, to remain strong and injury free. Apart from a longstanding history of being called skinny as a kid - this has only emphasized my want to finally get stronger.
Other benefits of Yunus’s coaching include:
* Results… The program when followed and applied as specified is proven to get results as I found out.
* General health and wellbeing - My body feels different not just in an aesthetic sense but just healthier, no more heartburn and feeling crap from sitting eating crisps all night. I’ve learned to be much more creative in the kitchen.
Biggest lessons for me were:
1. That I had to change what I eat. Tracking calories/macros I now realise is so important in the process to ensure you are getting the right things in, whether it's for fat loss or building muscle.
I used to think I need to eat more of everything and anything, that I need more calories. I didn’t understand that you needed to shed the fat first to build lean muscle. But I'd never researched nutrition much at all.
And that I was no longer just skinny - I was skinny-fat hah. Didn’t realise how fat I was until I saw the pictures.
2. Exercise technique.
Specifically the big lifts, I learned how to perform these safely (although still a work in progress) and have got stronger in all areas.
Also learning what muscles are being used and understanding when to add weight, feeling the muscles that are supposed to be working. So this could mean backing off the weight at times and ensuring to get all sets and reps complete was a lesson for me.
3. Realizing that I don’t get enough sleep.
That is a fact for not just me but Hannah (my wife) has an even bigger issue of this so I can’t complain too much. Hopefully my young son will sleep through the nights soon and we can remember what it’s like! Does make me wonder - what would my progress look like if I’d had a good 9 hours every night.
I have already recommended Yunus to my friends, simply because I have enjoyed the program and got stronger.
Apart from time I don't feel like I had to give up much that I wouldn't miss. I don’t even miss crisps now - I didn't think that was possible.
It’s clearly a program that every detail has been thought of. Every single answer is generally found within the manuals so it’s hard to really point out much he could improve.
I do however think the commitment to such a program has to come within as well. Many people talk about wanting to get in shape all year but I don't see any action despite being pointed in the right direction."
Strongman Sheds 4" Off Waist In 8 Weeks
By Eating More Food
"Early on in life I knew nothing about eating right or staying in shape. As I grew up I noticed that I was out of shape, eating garbage food and needed to make some big lifestyle changes. I started going to the gym on and off and making the right eating choices one by one.
What I learned from doing your program is to make smaller goals that you know you can achieve and also have bigger goals that you may one day be able to acheive. Also that goals should be specific things having to do with concreate numbers and not vague ideas.
I learned that a calorie is truly not a calorie and that different foods/ eating habits will affect people differently. Also that some people that are trying to lose weight may be eating a lot less than they should.
I learned that they big lifts are key and form is so necessary so you don't get an injury and working the proper muscles. Also that well placed accessory work can really help in your program overall and that compound lifts should be the bread and butter of any routine.
I REALLY enjoyed the form critiquing and feel that it has helped me tremendously.
Three other benefits of your service that I enjoyed:
• Keeping track of lifts and to see when you finally surpassed your previous max with proper form
• The help with getting macros straight
• Your openess and ability to adapt and make changes
I noticed that I was eating A LOT more than usual and I mean A LOT. Especially on workout days. It was harder to cram in most of the food after training on some nights but I got it done. At first I felt like I was eating way to much food but then as I saw the scale start to go down I figured it was ok and started to enjoy it.
I would recommend you to my closest friends, I think if they did your program they would find it easier to accomplish their goals and at the very least get great form and dieting tips.
Thank you again for your help and time."
Got Strong & Jacked -
"Never Seen Gains Like This in My Entire Life!"
"My background in strength training before starting your program was nothing to write home about. I had been lifting weights more or less actively for 4 years. Most of my time was spent training smaller muscle groups with isolation exercises in the 12+ rep range, having rarely ventured below 6 reps per set on any exercise.
The biggest change is that my previous workouts dragging on for 1.5 hours at a time have been replaced by intense, effective training sessions lasting only 50 minutes, which makes going to the gym much more enjoyable and easier. As a consequence, my results have skyrocketed in comparison to what they used to be.
I recently bench pressed 115 kg for 4 reps at a solid body weight of 84 kg. My squat and deadlift have gone through the roof as well, and I've never experienced gains like this before in my life.
I've finally understood the importance of training large muscle groups, which is crucial for gaining muscle and strength.
A huge benefit is also that during soccer season my strength training sessions had no negative effect on my performance on the field because I never trained to failure. In stark contrast to my past way of training, when I trained legs for 1.5 hours straight (squats, deadlifts etc. on the same day), my legs used to be so sore for 2-3 days afterwards that I was unable to do anything at soccer practice. With your program I never had this problem!"
Dropped 10+ KG of Body Fat and Hit Lifetime Personal Bests!
"Before starting Yunus’ program, my habits off the ice were off the mark.
I followed random workout plans I found online for free without any specific goals.
Meals at the school cafeteria, takeout meals and heavy, pasta-based foods formed the bulk of my diet, while fruits or vegetables were nowhere to be seen.
My only concern about hiring Yunus was financial. I knew I would get expert coaching, but it won’t be free.
As a student, I didn’t have a lot of money to invest in my hobbies. Fortunately, my family supported me with the payments, so I was able to figure it all out.
What I like the most about training with Yunus is how he begins with the basics and teaches you how to lift correctly instead of rushing into PR attempts off the bat.
Dialing in my lifting technique and focusing on proper sports performance nutrition means I get so much more out of training now compared to when I was doing it on my own.
Another thing I learned: Anyone claiming that losing fat is difficult, is lying.
Would I recommend Yunus to other athletes? Definitely! His coaching is precise, detailed and extremely competent.
I also appreciate his blunt feedback, specific advice and all the extra materials he gives out, which I can use to improve my lifts long after finishing his program."
Gained 20 KG on His Squat in 60 Days and
Feels Much Faster and Stronger on the Puck
"At 32 I started with ice hockey and fell in love with the game.
After a few years of just playing and not really improving I decided to go to the gym.
First year I was just doing anything I saw on the internet and it got me not much improvement and some injuries, so I was out of the gym every few months. Prevention of these injuries pushed me to research more about the correct way to train and stay injury free and keep getting better in the gym and on the ice.
Took a few certificates in strength, conditioning, and nutrition to know and become even better. Last year I decided to educate myself even further and took CSCS certificate in strength & conditioning and started to play with the idea to become a trainer in the future.
Did I have any concerns about working with Yunus? Not really about getting results as I was very happy after finishing his body weight program earlier. The only concern I had was how different online coaching would be compared to just purchasing his program and training on my own.
What I value most is the knowledge I have gained about correct training. Yunus explains proper technique in detail and I think he delivers online coaching on a very high level. The only way to improve it even further would be to train face to face with him.
Amazing gains are a good bonus too. On the ice my confidence grows, and I got much faster and stronger on the puck.
I would recommend Yunus to any athlete who wants to get the best out of the gym and bring his game to the next level.
Why? He delivers what he promised to deliver!
What I have learned so far during the program:
1. Variable sets. This was new to me. I read about it in Yunus’ book Strength Training for Ice Hockey but had no idea how useful it is.
2. Sled as a conditioning tool.
3. Correct breathing can add weight to my lifts within a few weeks. Improving my breathing I think was the biggest contribution to adding 20 kg to my squat.
A major discovery was also that at my age with minimum gym experience my body was able to take 5 workouts plus 2 shinny hockey sessions per week and still recover alongside a busy life and work.
I think I was just too comfortable in my comfort zone. Experiences like this open a new level what my body or mind can achieve. Valuable lesson not only for gym but for life too.
Also, the amount of food I had to eat was another valuable lesson. I knew I was eating clean and healthy but how much food I must eat to stay at my maintenance level was a big eye opener.
Before eating over 4000 calories I would consider overeating and would think that I am going to get fat for sure. On the contrary. I was dropping weight first which was a big surprise to me.
The main reason I chose and enjoy Yunus’ program is the fact that it lasts a whole year.
There is still a lot of work to become a good lifter but the fact that we don’t have to squeeze it into two months and still have ten months of learning ahead of me is better and more exciting than any of the certificates I have taken."
"Yunus’ Program Really Opened My Eyes...
Lots of Things Will Change from Now on!"
"I come from a typical hockey background.
Lifts mainly done with the team, coaches’ expertise being very minimal. Techniques etc. were never really checked nor worked on, I believe it was due to the lack of their knowledge.
I’d been going to the gym almost consistently 3-6 times per week from 2015 until now. My biggest break from gym was probably 2-4 weeks. I never tracked my lifts (kg’s) and didn’t really know my true 1RM’s.
I had no concerns at all about working with Yunus. I heard he demands a lot from his clients, but I only saw that as a positive thing. E-mails and comments were straightforward and included zero bullshit which I like.
Even though I believe he was in the midst of a pretty heavy workload I never felt that he would be half-assing anything that had to do with my program.
A direct result from following Yunus’ workouts were obviously my gains. But maybe more importantly it changed my method of training.
It made me realize how fun and exciting it is when the workouts change and you’re able to keep track of your numbers and beat them consistently.
The process itself is very addictive. It also showed me my weaknesses and body parts that need serious improvements.
Self-discipline was one thing that definitely developed during these past 60 days. Some other benefits were the importance of eating & sleeping right that Yunus emphasized and made me keep track off. I value that just as much if not more than the whole lifting and working out part.
The structure of the whole program was very detailed and straightforward. Yunus was always on time answering my e-mails and he gave me tips & solutions to problems I was wondering about. The analysis of my technique in the beginning was important and I also felt that I got a lot of good comments along the whole way.
All in all, good experience. “Professional” is maybe the best word to describe the communication and working with him.
What I learned during the program:
1. There isn’t a male/female who can’t grow. I hear it all the time – “doesn’t matter how much I eat man I just stay skinny”. Not true.
In the beginning, I thought my weight wasn’t going to increase at all (at least not with the pace I expected). Once we bumped up the calories and I realized how much and constantly you just have to eat in order to grow it blew my mind and if I ever hear someone complain that they can’t grow I’m just going to tell them to shut up and keep track & take care of their macros and increase the calorie intake.
2. Importance of sleep. I was sleeping so bad and was somewhat ashamed of posting the numbers of how many hours I had slept last night before the workout. My body, both mentally & physically felt so much stronger if I had a good night’s sleep.
3. Variation of different exercises. Too often I see people doing the same exact movements day in day out. There were various exercises I have not seen nor tried before. This kept training interesting and also challenged my muscle groups in a way I haven’t been able to achieve by myself.
I would absolutely recommend Yunus to other hockey players. I believe there are many other people out there that just need proper guidance to reach their full potential physically. I’m not saying it’s impossible just by yourself but I find this type of program extremely more efficient.
Other thing is that I may have thought I knew what I was doing (it might have been the amount of reps, eating etc.) but the truth is I wasn’t even close. Yunus’ program really opened my eyes. Lots of things will change from now on.
I want to thank him for all of his advice and comments throughout the whole program. It was money well spent and an investment that I don’t regret."
Ex-Athlete Sheds Over 11 CM Off His Waist &
Adds 22.5 KG to His Squat and Deadlift in Only 90 Days
"In the 90’s and until 2004 I was an athlete. I ran 5K and 10K and played basketball (2nd division) and volleyball (1st division) on the side.
Back then, I used to train with the same program every week (4 times / week) for 4 weeks in a row and then I changed the sets & reps & weights for the next 4 weeks.
I can say that I trained like that for 4 years in a row, but I never really improved my results. I got almost zero muscle stimulation and going to the gym was more like a habit than real training.
Since my goal was to get bigger and stronger, I used to take extra protein, creatine and other supplements. But I never calculated my macros or what I really should eat. So, I was eating wrong which never supported my muscle growth.
Between 2004 and 2021 no hard training at all in terms of fitness / gym.
That’s 17 years without proper training and nutrition. I was a living example of former athlete with only ruins left.
It was time for a change. I wanted to make this happen. I had zero reasons why I wouldn't join Yunus’ program.
Following Yunus’ advice, I was able to step out from my comfort zone and challenge myself to gain results. His direct feedback with examples / correction guides with actions forced me to take ownership of my training.
I learned how to increase weights in order to make progress every week with adequate muscle stimulus.
The program setup with 3-week phases is really great and it keeps you going forward every week and challenges you more. The app where Yunus posts all the workouts is awesome and simple to use.
During the 90-day program, I had issues with my groin and wrist, for which I got actionable rehab guidelines. Yunus also gave me replacement exercises for certain lifts which I was not able to do due to missing equipment in the gym.
My three most significant lessons learned:
1. Lifting techniques improved and 90 days is required to have a more solid baseline to start building the new future me. This happened after I started taking ownership of my training.
2. Nutrition, particularly guidelines for macros & total daily calories and supplements. In order to get results you need to be consistent with your eating.
You see visible changes when you track your numbers, and you can see improvements weekly and then on the entire 90-day timeline.
3. Sleep is so important, and I never got 9 hours in. Nevertheless, that was one benefit to really understand that without adequate rest your energy levels and performance will suffer the next day.
I would recommend Yunus to other men like me, simply because the results speak for themselves.
Waist decreased by -11.1 cm, my strength levels increased even up to +22.5 kg and I gained a bit more muscle."
Strength Coach Adds 50 Pounds to His Trap Bar Deadlift and 1" to His Arms While Shedding 1.5" Off His Waist in Only 8 Weeks
"I was looking forward to working with Yunus. I was curious to see what his online training would be like.
Just before the program I was travelling for 2 months without much of training beside some workouts with my bodyweight. Before that I used to train 4-5 times a week. I’d say I was already fit but not in my best shape.
It was great to have a plan and have someone care about it and push myself a bit when there was space to improve. In addition, I got some new ideas for planning workouts.
I really like Yunus’ style of communication. It is blunt but goal oriented. In the beginning I had to get used to it though since it’s been a while when I got coached.
I liked the technical feedbacks with the correction of the movements and the analysis in the beginning (gym equipment, etc.). The hints and corrections on technique was a big plus.
It was a hard but also fun plan. I liked the new inputs since I was a bit stuck in my habits. Also, I felt and also say that I made some progress. And this is always nice.
What I learned during the program:
* I’m capable of moving more weight than I thought of
* I never used to cut calories. Doing it was a great lesson to learn since it needs a bit of planning, getting it done despite hungry times and specially to adapt it.
I would recommend Yunus’ program to other athletes. It’s worth the money.
He invests time in the client and coaching him. It is not just a bit of money in his bank account."
Gained 8.5 Pounds of Lean Mass and 1.3" on His Arms
While Adding 66 Pounds to His Squat in 60 Days!
"I started going to the gym about a year before Yunus’ program.
I did not go regularly, sometimes not going for a couple of weeks because I had other things to do.
And my workouts were not really structured properly. By this I mean I had a basic sense of what the overall focus of the training should be (ex. Push/pull/legs) but I never tracked my progress or did an exercise with a clear purpose.
My technique on the main lifts was non-existent and I had no idea if what I was doing was correct.
My nutrition before the training program was balanced. I didn’t track my macros or know exactly how much protein, carbs, or fats I was consuming. I had a rough idea in my head of how much protein, carbs, or fats I ate during the day but this was far from accurate.
When it comes to online coaches I am a bit skeptical because there are quite a few who are incompetent and don’t know what they are doing.
I felt that Yunus shows a lot of knowledge and experience through his videos, emails, and training material.
My main concern was I didn’t know whether he would give me constructive feedback and tell me what I should do differently. I had this thought in the back of my head that he could just want the money and then not give me valuable advice to grow from. I now know this isn’t the case!
The individual feedback to the countless videos I sent Yunus was very valuable. I haven’t had the chance to go on the ice yet but I feel stronger in the gym and I assume this will transfer to on-ice performance.
It’s not only the strength I gained through the program but also the little tips that are important to look out for in the gym (ex. How high the safeties should be, squat in shoes vs. socks, etc.). That’s something very valuable that I got from this program.
I also like Yunus’ coaching style. What I mean is that his feedback is straight to the point and sometimes harsh.
This is a coaching style that resonates with me. It lets me know exactly what I should change and work on.
Another benefit is that the program was flexible to a certain extent. For example, I went on holiday and they didn’t have a trap bar. So, Yunus gave me a different exercise to do with a similar training effect.
Another benefit of working with him is that even though he provides sample videos of exercises I could always ask if something was unclear.
The training manual that I received at the beginning of the program is also well structured, clear and answered the majority of my questions.
I would recommend Yunus to my friends and other athletes because he has a lot of knowledge and experience, especially in strength and conditioning ice hockey players and that would help a lot of players train safer and get better.
There is no doubt that his training program works which is already great but there are a lot of things that he can teach athletes that will prevent injuries and help them get better even faster.
What I learned during the program:
* I should focus on technique and make sure it’s always on point on any given exercise otherwise the risk of injury goes up.
* I used to think that my 3 working sets all have to be the same weight. I learned it’s better to have different weights in the working sets. That is something significant I will apply in the future.
* Training smart is more important than ego lifting and trying to break PRs above all.
All in all, I am happy that I worked with Yunus and I feel strong and hungry for better results because of it.
I am also glad for all the advice he gave me and it has made me a better athlete. Thank you!!"
"I Like How Straight Up Yunus Is...
He Wants the Client to Get Better... It Motivates"
"Always played a lot of different sports and have been working out since 15 years old. But never really had any goals, especially during the summers.
Before Yunus’ program, I used to go to the gym about twice a week. I believed that I can see results without following a detailed plan and just picking exercises when I get to the gym.
As for nutrition, I always thought I was eating enough food for growth. I used to eat mainly pasta and not enough vegetables or fruits. Also didn’t include enough healthy fats in my diet.
I like how straight up Yunus is with all his instructions and feedback.
Also that he actually watches all the videos and wants the client to get better. It kind of feels like he’s there with me at the gym, it motivates.
I would recommend Yunus’ program to other athletes, if they were motivated enough to work out seriously.
Why? Because everything worked well. I improved in all of the tested exercises.
Major lessons I learned from Yunus’ coaching:
* Nutrition is key. Eat enough, didn’t know that my calories were so off before.
* Sleep enough.
* Try every week to beat last week’s numbers.
Tracking lifts also made a big difference, I thought I would remember how much I lifted last week. I really liked the app where it was easy to keep track of everything.
Thank you for the program, I think I learned a lot about lifting and what it takes to see results.
It’s a combination of doing everything right, not just the gym part. I really trusted you during the program (and still do)."
Experienced Lifter Still Making Gains After 40
"I have a long history lifting weights and have always trained hard.
Perhaps I was pushing too hard when training alone. That’s why I thought working with a coach would benefit me.
A done-for-you program made things so much easier. You go to the gym and you know exactly what you’re supposed to do.
Because workouts changed every 3-4 weeks, the program never felt stale and my strength levels improved at a steady rate.
Key lessons I learned:
1. Small weight increases weekly, don’t max out too often.
2. Precision with measuring body composition. It’s not just about body weight.
3. You don’t need a real deload. First week of each training phase is about finding your groove/deload.
4. There’s always a variation you can do when you’re injured.
5. You can still make progress when you’re over 40.
What I liked most about working with Yunus is that he doesn’t just give a direct answer to every question, he takes his time to educate the client and lets you find answers on your own.
I wouldn’t recommend Yunus to my closest friends because I know they’re not willing to invest this much money. But it’s corny they use the same amount of money, if not more, on alcohol.
I would recommend Yunus program to other athletes, though. Thank you so much for the coaching!"
"What I Like Most Is Yunus Doesn't Accept Excuses..."
"My sports background involved beer league hockey and Crossfit for 1.5 years.
Before starting Yunus’ program I stopped going to the gym for close to a year. Never paid much attention to nutrition.
My progress on the main lifts (squat, bench and chin-up) was excellent. I got a lot stronger despite dropping about 4 kg in bodyweight.
What I liked the most about training with Yunus is that he doesn’t accept excuses. His instructions were clear and I got detailed answers to all my questions.
What I learned during the program:
* Diet and nutrition. Getting the basics down is a must to make progress.
* Schedule your workouts in advance and follow that schedule without excuses.
* Lifting tempo. This was completely new to me.
I would recommend Yunus simply because the training was high quality and he produced results."
Gained 7 Kilograms While
Staying in Photo Shoot Shape
"The biggest difference is that nowadays my progress is on a completely different level than it was before. It's only now that I've noticed how ineffective my training used to be in the past.
I've witnessed the greatest gains in my legs and glutes. I even had to throw away all my old jeans because I no longer could fit into them after all the squatting and lower body training I've done over the past year.
Regarding nutrition, I've learned how to eat properly and also how much food you really need to eat to build muscle.
Training has become a passion for me and I wouldn't be able to stop doing it even if I wanted to. Motivation has been high all the time."
Added 30 Kilograms
to His Squat and Deadlift
"I was aware that I had a lot of room for improvements in my training prior to starting the program. In principle I knew what I was supposed to be doing but I just didn't know how to put that information to practice.
All my lifts improved significantly following your training plan. I added 30 kilograms to my deadlift max, which went from 150 kg to 180 kg. My squat shot up from 120 kg to 150 kg. Bench press increased from 90 kg to 105 kg.
The biggest benefit I've received from our collaboration is motivation with a capital M. The training program encourages me to go to the gym even on days when I'm not feeling particularly excited; getting results and the support from you have got me looking forward to every training session with enthusiasm."
Gained 5 Kilograms of Muscle &
Doubled Strength in 13 Weeks
"I have been trying to keep going to the gym for many years now.
First, around 8 years ago when I was about 22 years old. I remember the longest time I went to the gym more or less regularily was around 10 months. Later on, I stopped as I had not seen any major results. I had unbalanced lifestyle and that is why I think it had negatively affected my fitness results.
I do not think I had any concerns to hire a professional. I remember I finally realized I am getting older and fattier than I used to be. Hence, I decided to find someone to help me train more efficiently with greater results.
Besides the knowledge I got about the fitness, I understood that getting stronger, loosing fat, and gaining muscles is all about self-discipline.
I also understood that it is not enough just going to the gym. It is more than that: It is your lifestyle, your diet, your sleep, your mindset and your priorities.
Three great benefits of your service are:
a) Quick results in a short time - Looks like you have gone through many training programs and absorbed lots of fitness information. I think you got the best training program by focusing on the core exercises.
I am extremely happy I started doing Squats, Deadlifts and Chin ups instead of hundreds of other machinery exercises I used to do in the past.
b) Attitude - I really liked your attitude towards clients. Initially it may appear a bit rude, but later on you find it motivating.
Still remember the "kick your ass" clause in the pre-agreement phase 🙂 Things like "fat bastards", "you are weak", "the truth about abs" etc. is an honest feedback, which really motivates. Keep going this way!
c) Site information - Your website is excellent. You are doing a great job publishing so much information on fitness, nutrition, lifestyle, etc.
That was one of the main reasons I used your services. I bet, whenever someone sees this much information and activity from the service provider, he starts to trust and believes the person behind it is an expert.
Other significant lessons I learned:
• Lesson 1 - Lifestyle - I learned that to look good and being strong it is not enough going to the gym regularly. I learned its everything, including what you eat, how you sleep and how you live. Practically, one needs to change his lifestyle to achieve greater results.
• Lesson 2 - Goals - I learned it is important to set the goals, which may look unrealistic in the beginning. Not having the goals in fitness is the same as in life. No goals, no achievement. Therefore, at every training it is important to aim bigger weights, longer distances, better results.
• Lesson 3 - Step back can be a step forward - I learned that sometimes it is important to take a step back so that later you can go even further. Hence, deloads, week off, etc. are a good thing :)"
"Providing a set program and accountability really helped keep me on target. There are always going to be days that I wake up and think - ugh, do I REALLY have to do this again? Knowing that I have a weigh-in coming or a video to submit forced me to push through the moments of weakness.
I quickly dropped inches from my waist and noticed a huge improvement in my overall cardio longevity. I loved seeing my lift numbers go up and hitting Personal Records kept me really motivated.
I loved getting feedback on form improvement and correction for the little mistakes. It's really difficult to progress without having a practiced eye to really look at the lift and make the necessary tweaks that, most of the time, I didn't even know I was doing.
I would absolutely recommend you to my closest friends. Anyone trying to get motivated and moving forward on their fitness goals would benefit from your services.
I learned that I'm capable of doing far more than I believe. I was able to go through workouts that seemed incredibly daunting and come out alive and feeling amazing. I found that I could push myself to reach high goals and still have some gas in the tank.
This program really helped me get on track with my fitness goals. I am pushing forward now and hoping to reach new heights with competitions and overall body composition. Thank you so much for everything, it really shows in my new body :D"
"Going to the gym had always been somewhat inconsistent and in no way progressive for me. I was used to pushing myself really hard, gauging the effectiveness of what I was doing by how much I was sweating, and training to failure without exception.
A huge benefit I got from your training program is guidance on how to set up a proper nutrition plan, because after I started paying more attention to what I was putting in my mouth, I quickly realized what was wrong.
During our collaboration I feel that I've found a balance between eating and training for optimal progress. What surprised me was that I was allowed to eat quite a lot of food without following any rules too strictly, even though the goal was to lose fat. I believe this increases the odds of people sticking to the diet and getting sustainable results because it's a lifestyle change, not a quick fix.
I would most definitely recommend your coaching to trainees/athletes. I know many gym-goers who are spinning their wheels and who'd benefit tremendously from this type of guidance to reach a new level in their training."
"Ever since I stopped playing ice hockey at 16, I've been lifting weights 2-4 times per week more or less inconsistently. My training had never been very goal-oriented before I started following your training program. I simply went to the gym and did whatever I felt like doing on a given day.
At first the program felt very light and I thought it would be impossible to get any results by performing 4x5 on the main barbell lifts. In hindsight this proved to be a wise decision, because I had suffered from knee pain and Medial epicondylitis (commonly known as golfer's elbow) in the past.
Starting light also allowed me to improve my technique. Previously I would take advantage of the stretch reflex at the bottom of a lift, so I'd lower the weights fast on the squat or bench, and then bounce them back up, which allowed me to lift more weight than with strict form. With your instructions I learned how to control the weight on the eccentric and lift explosively on the concentric portion of the movement. So not only did I clean up my form, I did so while getting significantly stronger, and haven't suffered from any joint pain while following your instructions and training plan.
Here are my numbers after six months on the program:
• Squat 100 kg 5x5 -> 127,5 kg 5x5
• Bench press 77,5 kg 5x5 -> 85 kg 5x5
• Deadlift 120 kg 5x5 -> 157,5 kg 5x5"
"I had played ice hockey all my life, and training off the ice had always been a big part of it. I was very strict between 2015-2020 when I had my sights set on going pro.
After that didn’t pan out, I got lazier about everything that has to do with training and health. I stopped lifting weights and ate whatever I wanted. Of course I lost strength and muscle, and got much fatter.
Despite some money concerns (I had just bought an apartment which increased my financial stress), I knew this couldn’t go on. I had to get back in shape.
That’s why I contacted Yunus for coaching. His programs are versatile and of high quality. I knew what I was going to get.
In the past, I used to follow training instructions to a T, which took away from enjoying the workouts.
On this program, I changed my mindset.
If I didn’t feel like training today, then I didn’t. Or I would do a part of a workout. In any case, I focused on giving my best effort to what I can and have the energy for in this one session.
It was a pleasant surprise to see gains from this since lifting weights felt so forced in the past. I no longer strive to become a professional athlete, and doing sports means different things today compared to 5 years ago.
I regained some of the desire I had lost for training on Yunus’ program. I was happy about my progress on many exercises and that I started to look better again.
I have always recommended Yunus to other athletes. His workouts are productive, carefully designed, and most importantly varied, which adds to your drive to train.
In addition, his knowledge about training and nutrition is at a very high level. He also demands a lot from his athletes, which I like."
"My background in strength training was consistently inconsistent, and I had never had a real training program before this one.The biggest benefit so far has been the inclusion of better and more effective exercises (squats etc.) than what I was used to doing in the past. With your program my results have shot up and I've made faster strength gains than when I was training casually on my own.
I've gone from barely being able to do bodyweight chin-ups and dips to doing them with added weight with ease. This was something I didn't expect to happen in just a couple of short months. Right now I'm up to 30 kg of extra weight for 12 reps on the dips.
Apparently, other people are starting to notice the physical changes taking place as well because last weekend I visited my folks after a long while, and they all kept asking me what the hell I'd been doing to look like the way I do now. Needless to say, I will definitely keep on doing this in the future!
Gaining knowledge of proper nutrition has been another huge benefit. For instance, I was totally surprised about how much I really needed to eat in order to fuel my training and build muscle.
Tracking progress, finding motivation and striving to get better all the time have been really important concepts for me in my training. I've understood now that I'm only competing against myself in everything I do. The ups and downs are all a part of the game, and even the pros don't always have a perfect training session. When you fail, you simply pick yourself up again and fight to have a greater performance tomorrow.
I would definitely recommend your programs for those looking to build muscle, lose fat and gain strength. I certainly am not the only one out there thinking about how to make training effective or where to even begin."
"I had been training on my own for about two years before I had the chance to work with you. Everything I knew I had learned by trial and error or by watching what others were doing. I had made some progress, although I had not reached the goals I initially set for myself.
The biggest benefit I've received is learning which exercises I should be doing and most importantly, how to perform those movements correctly!
So far, I've lost about 5 kg of fat, gained strength and am now much more confident in my own training.
I highly recommend your program and have already told my friends about it."
"My results so far: I’ve built muscle, gotten stronger and visibly leaner, and feel awesome.
I’ve managed to continuously add weight to the bar. The coolest thing is that I'm even able to do chin-ups now, which I couldn't a few months ago.
It's as if I’m a completely different person now and I’m glad I’m doing this! As flamboyant as the following might sound, I can honestly say that that one week last fall when I had the chance to train with you and you taught me how to perform the basic exercises, has changed my life."
"Your partner Teemu recommended you because you two have a similar training style. Your blog was interesting and the way you wrote was not typical for personal trainer. I am for real with my training and I knew that you would help me to get me toward my goals.
Before I started on your program, I had been excersicing for years but not TRAINING properly. I started lifting weights about 10 months ago. Before that I had been going to the gym but when I now think about my gym training it was more about pumping randomly.
Main thing was to learn that progression at the gym takes time but it is worth it. When I did my first chin-up I felt that my whole world changed. Now I can do 4 in a row and I learned how one has to set goals and when the goals are achieved those needs to be set higher when reached.
The main thing was that I learned how to TRAIN. When I focus to the results at the gym, I get results also outside the gym. I got my training on track and I feel that it is a big part of my life. If I am not training or doing progression, I feel that I am totally lost.
The training plan is what I would recomend to everybody that want to be strong and improve results. I would recomend you to my friends who are serious about training and lifting weights. Not to those who want to be just ”fit” or ”toned”."