Q&A with Elite Armwrestler: Raymond Cote (2016)
Q&A with World Armwrestling Champion + Creator of Country Crush: Raymond Cote
First off, congrats on launching your latest product! For the people who don’t already know, describe the Country Crush as much as you can.
The Country Crush came to life while watching my wife do lat pull downs with the an old school handle called the Triangle handle and I noticed that every time she would squeeze her shoulder blades together she would complain of her wrists hurting. So I designed a similar handle with over sized free spinning grips. The purpose of this was to develop my wife’s grip wrist arms for the sport of arm wrestling. The free spinning grips allows for your wrist to rotate freely in a progressive fashion to reduce injury and strain on your wrists while cutting down the amount of time in the gym because of the design of the Country Crush you virtually work all components of arm wrestling regardless what exercise you do with it.
How long have you been arm-wrestling for and what made you want to pursue this over something like bodybuilding or strongman?
Do you look up to anybody in the arm wrestling community or do you just motivate yourself?
I look up to many in people in the sport. Mostly of course I look up to Badger Drews but I also look up to people like Ray Darling, Fred Decker, Norm Devo, Tom Nelson, Gabe Acardi, Ron Bath, Neil Bell, and of course my current coach Scott Wynn. I would have to say my biggest motivation though would be my wife Autumn Cote who is currently ranked 9th in the country by In The Hook.
What is your biggest goal for this year as far as your business is concerned?
A lot of bodybuilders will have programs that look something like:
Monday: Chest + Triceps
Thursday: Back + Biceps + Forearms
Friday: Shoulders + Traps
This is a common example of what is known as a bodybuilding split routine.
What does the weekly training routine look like for arm wrestling on average without getting too technical?
Morning – cardio wrist and hand exercises evening – cardio and depending on the day a body part example chest. Then once a week table time.
How long do these sessions usually last and how long does it take to warm-up on average?
My work outs including cardio is an hour and half each workout and I warm up for about 15 minutes.
Do you ever incorporate 3 inch+ handle work in your training? In other words how fat are the handles that you train with?
I train with grips from 1.5″ to 3″ in diameter. The Country Crush offers many types and sizes of grips to develop that MONSTER grip.
Do you find that Captain Crush Grippers help your performance in arm wrestling and do you find that they are good for forearm hypertrophy?
I personally do not own or use COC grippers I do own Heavy Grippers from 100 to 350 but I only use the 100 for rehab and everyday training. I believe any training that targets a specific muscle or tissue is good for growth.
Do you ever incorporate any Farmers walks into your training for armwrestling or is that more of a thing for strongman competitors?
I developed a obstacle course that incorporates a lot of strongman and grip movements to include farmer walks, tire flips, pinch grip holds just to name a few.
Do you incorporate any sledgehammer levering work into your programming and if so then how heavy is your hammer that you use?
What is the most weight that have ever strict curled and what rep range do you usually work in?
A lot of arm wrestlers talk a lot about the importance of doing hammer curls and how they take this exercise very seriously, would you mind elaborating on why exactly?
Well Hammer curls concentrates on the brachialis tendon and muscle that is important for a strong top roll defense and execution of the top roll style of pulling at the same time as building your wrist by keeping your knuckles and wrist pointed up.
I’ve never played any serious arm-wrestling matches against anybody in a competition or anything like that, but what are a couple of basic and critical tips that you could give me to start off if ever anybody challenges me? Also how do I make the matches as “fair” as possible if I don’t have a specialized armwrestling table?
First off I would never recommend anyone to bar room arm wrestle due to the risk of injury. However if you are on the table stay tight look at your hand at all times..make sure your centered on the table and both thumb knuckles are showing and have someone who knows what they are doing there to supervise.
How do you use leg drive and core strength during an arm wrestling match? Also what is your take on foot placement and lower body stance as far as getting a mechanical advantage is concerned?
Are there any “cheats” or “hacks” per say that aren’t really cheats, but they give you a huge advantage in winning an arm wrestling match? (ex: squeezing a particular one of your opponents fingers..etc)
Arm Wrestling is all about how much can you get away with before the go..everything from hand placement to elbow jumping. there are rules but most matches go so fast it is hard to catch it all.
How do you use the strength of your shoulders and lats to aid you in an arm wrestling match? Also how important are these muscles for arm wrestling and do you experience soreness in these areas the day after a serious match?
Shoulders & back play a huge part in arm wrestling when engaged properly they will assist you in back pressure, posting, pressing. when training I do experience soreness in these areas.
What are some breathing and bracing techniques that you could give novice arm wrestlers?
Breathing to always breath from your diaphragm this is accomplished by inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your mouth. As for bracing yourself that is simple you are gonna go from 0-60 in one second make sure your core is tight your body is ready in a good position.
What are some of the ways that you can tell that someone has good genetics for the sport of arm wrestling? (ex: thick wrists, thick/long fingers…etc) and what are some of the worst physical genetic traits that an armwrestler could have?
This is the thing I love about arm wrestling there is no such thing as good or bad genetics. There are guys who do nothing but drink beer and eat pizza and are the best in the world and guys who look like Greek gods who suck. Arm wrestling is about motivation, dedication, and heart.
One of my biggest goals is to have 16 inch upper arms with 16 inch forearms. I currently have 15.5 inch upper arms and about 14.5 inch forearms and I know that getting to 16 inches will take long, but what do you recommend? (ex: weight gain, special exercises that blow up your forearms…etc)
I recommend of course above all the Country Crush Handle. but I use several training handles like the Wrist Wrench, Top Roller, Zeus Handles which all can be found on my website TAKE YOUR TRAINING TO A WHOLE NEW LEVEL