LT 023 | Dr. Michael Hartle – Plan the Work, Work the Plan

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In Episode 023 of the LEO Training Podcast I interview Dr. Michael Hartle, Chief SFL and Master SFG of StrongFirst. This is a special Father’s Day episode and Dr. Hartle was accompanied by his son Marcus. We had a ton of fun and it was great getting a father/son perspective in this episode!

Let me tell you a little bit more about Dr. Hartle.

Dr. Michael Hartle is a chiropractic physician, a board-certified Clinical Nutritionist (DACBN), a Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician (CCSP), a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), the Chief SFL Barbell Instructor and Master SFG (Kettlebell) Instructor with StrongFirst, and an Active Release Technique (ART) provider since 1995. He is also the co-developer of the StrongFirst SFL Barbell Certification.

Raised in the frozen tundra known as Minnesota, he once lived in Hawai’i while his father was stationed at Pearl Harbor during Vietnam. He has been practicing in Fort Wayne, Indiana for the last 21 years. A former nationally-ranked powerlifter, who has won several national titles with USA Powerlifting, Dr. Michael is also the former Chairman and founder of the Sports Medicine Committee of USA Powerlifting (USAPL). He was the Head Coach of the USAPL World Bench Press Team for eight years, with the team winning the 2004 World Championship Team Title.

His best competition lifts are 705lb squat, 535lb bench press, and 635lb deadlift with a best combined total of the three lifts of 1,840lbs in the 275lb weight class. For the last ten years, he has been playing semi-pro football, defensive tackle, and loving it! His football team, the Adams County Patriots, won the National AA Semi-Pro Football Championship in 2008!

He treats, trains and advises to all kinds of patients, from babies to the elderly, from youth athletes to NCAA student-athletes to professional athletes. He also coaches junior high football and track and field, volunteering his time for the last sixteen years. He has three sons and two grandchildren who keep him busy with their personal endeavors, including crawling, hockey, football, lacrosse, track and field, and of course, academics.

Here’s what you will learn in this interview:

  • Dr. Michael Hartle’s background in strength and experience as a chiropractor and father.
  • Debunking strength training myths for youth athletes
  • Marcus’s strength training program and the sports he plays
  • Early sports specialization in youth athletics and the risks it poses
  • The Rio 2016 Olympics and what events Dr. Hartle and Marcus will be following
  • How Dr. Hartle would prep for the snatch test if he had been primarily training with the barbell
  • How to design a program focusing on barbell and kettlebell lifts
  • Dr. Hartle’s preferred warm-up before a barbell session
  • How the SFL fits within the StrongFirst curriculum
  • and much more.

Show Notes:


When Tension is a Beautiful Thing

The Subtle But Essential Role of the Triceps Brachii in the Deadlift

300 Seconds: A Guide to Maximizing Your Rest Intervals

The Basics of the Barbell Front Squat

Using Barbells and Kettlebells Together