Bank Holidays

I love my bank holiday weekends and with another looming, I have been wondering how I can make the very most of it. I am hoping for some good weather and a general good time as many do but many people don’t know where bank holidays originate.

In 1871, the day which banks were open and closed was a general mess across the UK. This meant that cheques were often delayed and bills were not processed in due time. Sir John Lubbock had enough of this madness and so introduced an Act of Parliament to get some standardization for these days.

The Act selected four days in the year in the UK.  At first these were Easter Monday, Whit Monday, 1st Monday of August and the 26th of December. Five days were opted for in Scotland.

Now, these days were not intended to be national holidays. But when the members of Parliament were discussing the Act, one of their major concerns was whether  other organisations plus the public should use these days as holidays also.  The Bank Holiday Act was so popular that their was mention that the August Bank Holiday should be renamed to St Lubbock’s day and some people did in fact call it that.

The holidays did at one point get a bad reputation for themselves as they became associated with the working class people drinking too much. This was especially true for the August Bank Holiday.


Even thought the Bank Holidays were created by Victorians, they are rooted much further back than the holidays themselves. They come from some days which already existed as celebration. For example, mid-august was traditionally a time for seaside holidays even in the days before the railway.  May Day comes from pre-christian days where it was a tradition related to fertility and spring.

The holidays are appointed every year by Royal Proclamation.  Actually, a Bank Holiday can be created in an emergency. For example, if the government wishes to cease currency dealings or for other special occasions such as the Queen’s Jubilee.

The Act was repealed in in 1971 and changed to the Banking and Financial Dealings Act. This is still in place right now.  So the uk bank holidays in 2016 are pretty much the same as they were over 100 years ago but now obviously we don’t venture to the UK seaside as much.

Why you should dip

dips_down Many of you may know that I am a keen gym goer. I’ve seen a few guys in there doing dips in the past but hadn’t really tried them myself. I had a go at them last week and felt the burn the next day. After talking to the instructor there, it turns out that dips provide great upper body strength and also mass. This is mainly down to the unique movement that it requires. By including dips in your normal gym routine, will get the following advantages:

Its a CKC exercise. Being a Closed Kinetic Chain exercise (meaning that your body is moved while the hands and feet stay in the same position), it works your opposing muscles and their entire group when lifting and lowering the body.  Pull ups are also another great Closed Kinetic Chain exercise.

You can add as much weight as you like. Dips are challenging at first but they will soon become easy.  It is really simple to add weights to your dip so that you keep improving your strength and growth. This means that you will have unlimited potential in your dipping routing.  You can add weight to your routine with the use of a dipping belt.dips_up

Upper body gains. With the ability to continuously add weights to the your dips, you can continuously overload the muscles which are used.  If you are always overloading with a good weight gaining diet, your success if guaranteed (and you will be like me :-)).

Better than press ups. Press ups are a good body weight based exercise and is quite similar in terms of CKC to dips.  But you are limited to lift only your own body weight.  While it is possible to do weight press ups, dips are usually much more convenient.

Better lockouts.  A dip isn’t complete until you reach the lockout position.  Often, the final inches of the movement are the most difficult.  By doing dips, you significantly increase lockout strength which goes directly to assist the lockout of other exercises such as bench press or and overhead press.

So, there you have it.  I hope that I have successfully convinced you to add dips to your routine.

Until next time…..


Hi guys.  This is my first post on my new website.  I’ll be posting stuff soon so be sure to check back.  Maybe you’ll learn something 🙂