18 HF Survival Knife and Multipurpose
In the video linked below I give reasons why I think the HF Survival knife isn’t a very good tool.
But the video is more than just that, as I share some other thoughts about tools and multipurpose thinking.
One thing mentioned in the video is weight. Often people from all sorts of sports and forms of recreation look at tools or equipment that can serve a multitude of purposes.
And on the surface this can seem like a good thing. Sometimes it works out great and other times it leads to frustration.
Often, people will try to find equipment that is light-weight.
Light-weight shoes and boots, light weight bicycles, motorcycles, tents, knives, axes, clothing, sleeping bags, tarps and the list goes on and on.
A multipurpose tool is meant to replace several pieces of equipment and thus save weight.
Yet all too often the person is packing around 20-50 pounds or more of excess body fat.
My thinking is, rather than paying the big $$ on acquiring some light-weight multipurpose piece of equipment, why not try getting into better shape?
Get stronger and better conditioned and that bicycle or motorcycle or pack won’t feel so heavy.
This is often where the search for multipurpose equipment of any sort comes into play. The thinking goes:
“If I can buy something that serves many purposes then it will keep me from having to move or pack around as much weight.”
Now in some cases this is a good thing, depending on the goal. If you’re trying to get from point A to point B as fast as possible as in a race or competition, something light-weight and multipurpose may be the way to go.
But generally someone who is in a race or competition is already conditioned to what they are trying to accomplish and hopefully has trained strength and endurance so they can reach their goal.
Even then redundancy is often a wise thing, as the saying goes: “One is none, two is one.”
That’s why vehicles have a spare tire. That’s why that flare gun came with more than one flare.
When it comes to acquiring training equipment for the gym, look at your goals.
If you’re an aspiring Powerlifter it makes no sense to buy an Olympic Barbell meant for training the Clean & Jerk and the Snatch.
If you are into playing tennis and that’s your sport, loading up on equipment meant for strongman training makes no sense either.
Often the sport picks the person. And in the same vein, the sport picks the method of training and the equipment you should invest in.
Some pieces of equipment lend themselves to being used in a wide variety of ways. Others are pretty much one ticket items.
For example, a bicycle: you pedal it and that’s about it. Now of course it can be used to train for long distance riding, short sprints, commuting and transportation. But it still is only useful for pedaling and basically building endurance to varying degrees.
How about a barbell?
We use it to lift weight plates, whether solid metal plates or bumper plates of some sort. In that sense that’s all it’s good for, holding weight plates so they are easier to lift and we can progressively adjust the load.
Yet with the barbell you can develop all sorts of qualities or skills: the three power lifts, the world of Olympic lifts and the regressions or breakdowns of the Snatch and Clean & Jerk. You can do barbell complexes to develop work-capacity. You can focus on pure strength or hypertrophy.
Is one tool better than the other?
Well, it depends on YOUR personal goals.
If we’re going to compete in the El Tour de Tucson as a serious competitor the typical $100 box-store bicycle won’t cut it. We’ll need a top of the line bicycle.
If we’re going to bomb around the neighborhood on a bike for a bit of aerobic training in conjunction with lifting weights for strength and health the box-store bike will work.
What’s our goal?
Are we trying to improve in a particular sport?
Maybe we’re trying to improve our ability to function in our occupation?
Maybe we want to do better in a certain form of recreation, like skiing?
Or maybe we want just general all-around functional capabilities? And if this is the case, what level do we want to take that to?
That’s the thing with any sport or certain occupations and even in our personal training. They all contain various levels of skills or we might say qualities.
This too must be addressed in figuring out not only what and how to train but also with what tools, implements or pieces of equipment.
We can be a recreational skier. Or we may compete on a local ski team or we’re going to the Olympics. Pretty much all sports and forms of recreation are like this. Even occupations have various skill levels within themselves: security guard, LEO, SWAT, each a major step up in level of skills.
Each level is sort of like steps leading up to a platform where we can say:
“I’ve reached this level.”
You may even get a certificate for doing that, but it’s expected you will continue to build and hone your abilities.
We can stay there at that level and try to improve within that level or we can begin the climb up the steps or ladder to the next level.
A person can display the same skill level as an international soccer player and yet still be content with playing local games with friends. We’ve all met people who could have played for a professional team at some point in their life.
Even with Dan John’s Q1 and Q2 there are varying levels. Quadrant 1 is a lot of qualities at a low level. This is what Dan John calls PE class in grade school.
So let’s think about that for a minute.
A 13 year old has a higher and deeper level of Q1 skills than an 8 year old.
And the level of Q1 skills and ability to express them improves by the time the teenager hits his 18th year of age. And if that person continues to play a variety of sports and engages in various forms of other types of training, his Q1 capabilities will become even greater by the time he reaches 22 years of age.
That person is still displaying Q1 qualities but at an ever increasing level of difficulty and mastery.
If this course is continued that person could eventually hit the upper levels of Q1 and transition into Q2 which are the skills and qualities displayed by, for example, NFL and Rugby players and certain tactical-type occupations.
Thus, if we determine what level we want to attain in any particular sport, occupation or outdoor activity, this knowledge can help us decide what type of equipment to invest in. And it can help us somewhat answer the questions of what, where, when, why and how to train.
I said somewhat because everything in the training world is not always a concrete fact.
Certain pieces of equipment or tools are great for many things; others operate best in a singular mode.
Narrow it down by investing in tools that give you what you want and need and will carry you to the level of capability you desire.
And always keep in mind:
If you are a cyclist, you pedal. If you’re a swimmer you swim. If you’re a powerlifter you lift. If you’re a baseball player you hit baseballs.
Train according to your sport.
If you’re into multipurpose capabilities or functionality, you’re going to have to do more than the program minimum and arm-chair-surfing.
Send your roots out deep and wide.
There’s a dirty little secret to the analogy of strength being like a glass, and it applies to all sorts of skills and qualities. We’ll hit that subject in the next article.
Enjoy the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25Vqk6sWToU