The Man Behind the Scenes: an Interview with Yosef Johnson

Yosef Johnson is the owner of Ultimate Athlete Concepts, a Michigan based company dedicated to providing top quality information from the world’s leading coaches, scientists, and researchers. DR: It’s great to have you for this interview, Yosef. Please introduce yourself and give a bit about your background to the readers. YJ: I was an athlete searching for ways to get better as a teenager. Most of what I found was very weak, but I kept looking. In my early 20′s, I came across Dr Yessis’ “Secrets of Soviet Sports Training”. I remembered the story about how he developed Todd Marinovich and was also very aware of the Soviet’s success. Upon reading the book, I began to try to contact him. After making contact, I could tell he was far more knowledgeable than anyone I had encountered. As my own athletic career was ending, I was still fascinated with the field and began to work as his apprentice DR: You’ve been publishing literature from the former Soviet Union for many years now. Most strength coaches know about the “big name” scientists from the USSR, such as Dr. Verkhoshansky, Dr. Issurin, and Dr. Bondarchuk. Who are some of the lesser known, but still highly influential, coaches to come out of the Eastern bloc countries? YJ: Petrovsky [Borzov’s coach], Ter-Ovanesian, etc… Many forget that Borzov was the fastest person in the world at one point in the 70′s. DR: Much of the writing from the Eastern bloc countries has been misapplied in the training of athletes. Why do you think this is? YJ: We have not fully comprehended what they were doing. The quality of...
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