Shoulders of Giants – John Jesse


I just obtained a copy of Wrestling Physical Conditioning Encyclopedia by John Jesse. Paddy Mortimer was gracious enough to send it to me in exchange for an East German book that I have that is out is out of print. This book is awesome, full of great practical information. You are probably asking who is John Jesse? John Jesse was an expert on strength training, injury prevention and rehabilitation from Southern California. He went to USC, where he was a contemporary of Peyton Jordan. I think that he worked with Gene Logan of Logan and McKinney Serape Effect fame. I was first exposed to his ideas in an article my high school football coach gave me an article he wrote in 1964. Over the next sixteen years I read everything he wrote that I could get my hands on. Sometime in the late 1970’s, the exact year escapes me, we shared the podium at The Runners World Sponsored National Running Week Symposium. We spoke on Strength Training for Runners. What an honor to share the podium with him. He passed away sometime in the 1980’s and frankly I lost track of his work until the late 90’s when I was going through my library and some files and found a gold mine of his material. I did not realize how much of an influence his ideas had on me. He was preaching tri-plane work in the late 1940’s. Big emphasis on rotary work, a surprise to the gurus of today who think invented rotary work. His training made extensive use of dumbbells, swing bells and body weight movements in addition to traditional lifting movements. If you can obtain any of his books they are well worth reading. His ideas are very contemporary; he was a man ahead of his time. The older I get and the more I coach the more I realize that we are all traveling paths blazed by pioneers like John Jesse. It is almost trite to say that we stand on the shoulders of giants. His work was more the norm rather than the exception in his day. Sound methodology based on good pedagogy grounded in science. We need more John Jesse’s today.
Discuss entry

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
RT @GreatestQuotes: Your aspirations are your possibilities. - Samuel Johnson - 4 years ago
Vern Gambetta

Latest posts by Vern Gambetta (see all)