If you read my logs and website you hear all the time how busy it is for me at TPS.

Well, lately it has been twice as busy and it’s about to get worse before it gets better.

I got word a while ago that my building was being sold even though I just renewed my lease and I have been on the hunt for a new spot. Packing a 30,000 square foot gym up and moving it is no big deal right?

Anyway, I have looked at literally almost every single piece of commercial property available in the surrounding towns and there was only one spot that was workable. The big hang up was usually having enough parking but another one was the cartoonishly high price per square foot for commercial space right now.

I had a great day today because I signed a new lease and we have an official new location for TPS and it is close by, less than a 5 minute drive from here and it is super close to public transportation which makes it easier for those coming from the Boston area to get here.

The new space is 10,000 square feet and is all on a one level rock solid slab. That means no more worries about deadlifts, cleans and Nicky Catz’s snatches falling through the floor. It also means that we no longer need a lot of the stuff we have in here like the Nautilus machines and cardio.


turf strongman (2), Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise

Doesn't look like much now, but it will!



TPS is going back to our original roots and we will be solely focused on STRENGTH. The new space will be much more awesome and will have all buff/no fluff equipment. We have just about all of the best gear on this site, such as racks, lifts, benches and more. That’s about all we will have.

Strongman stuff will be available indoors and out, we’ll have plenty of room for to squat, press, pull, bench, flip, do stones, push Prowlers and more all in one awesome space.

We won’t have 30 pieces of cardio. If you want to do some cardio, hit the turf or go outside and run. Yes, we’ll keep a few treadmills and the step mill, but that’s about it.

We plan on making the move as soon as the permitting process is done by the city and the build out is finished. This will be in the fall/winter and that’s all I can say about that for now.

I’ll leak the new address soon so stay tuned! It’s gonna be 100% awesome in the new space.

So now that we have that over with, let’s talk about the Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise.


I call these Koklayev Deadlifts because I learned them from Mischa Koklyaev when he was here for the Russian Strength Seminar with Boris Sheiko.


Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise



I wanted to share this lot sooner but waited to do so until they had a few more seminars done. I didn’t want to be a bean spiller.

Mischa told us this is his favorite deadlift assistance lift and I have never seen it before. Without sounding like “that guy”, I’ve seen a lot of stuff and don’t usually learn completely new exercises when I go to seminars. It’s usually a tweak or a tip that makes a big difference.

This one was a totally new spin on an old favorite. We’ve all seen stiff legged deadlifts and Romanian Deadlifts right?

This is a variation and Mischa says it is his number one go to exercise for a huge deadlift. It carries over to his squat too.

To perform it you need to stack two pulling blocks on top of each other. They should be between 12”-15” in total height. Basically you want the boxes stacked up to be about the length of your calf, stopping behind your knee. It’s a good idea to toss a few 45’s on the box too in order to keep them still.

Laurie setting up for the start of the Koklyaev Deadlift, Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise

Laurie setting up for the start of the Koklyaev Deadlift




Begin the exercise by standing with your calves against the box and a bar loaded up at your shin in a deadlift position.

Next, hip hinge back and take your normal grip on the bar and flex your lats to take all of the slack out of the bar.

Then, stand up as if doing a stiff legged deadlift. The key here is to keep your weight pressed back into the box and never let your legs come off the boxes on the way up or the way down.


Anna Koklyaev deadlift, Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise

Anna at the mid point. Note how far back on the heels her weight is.



Laurie locking out the Koklyaev Deadlift, Top Secret Deadlift Assistance Exercise

Laurie locking out the Koklyaev Deadlift


It’s a very simple exercise and will FRY your hamstrings if done right.

Mischa also says that it is great for fixing technique issues in the pull. You see a lot of people set up for the pull and shift their weight to the mid-foot or the toes just before they initiate the pull.

This teaches you to keep the weight loaded on the posterior chain to get a strong pull from the floor.

Mischa advises using this exercise for sets of 3-5 using a heavy weight.

I’ve added these into my own programming and for my ladies in the TPS Method for Powerlifting and we are seeing great results.

I suggest you give them a try and see for yourself.

That’s all for this week.

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Vincere vel mori

Total Performance Sports