Under the Bar - December 2004 Reader Survey Results

These are the results of a survey for the readers of my powerlifting blog Under the Bar. At the time of the survey, the blog had been active for 20 months with a total of 294 entries. The blog specific traffic had increased from a few hundred unique visitors (excluding robots and worms) per month in 2003 to an average of 130 visits a day and 1300 unique visitors a month by late 2004. As is the nature of the web, much of this is pass-through traffic, people making a one-time visit and various up-to-no-good spambots and worms masquerading as common browsers. This survey was essentially about getting beyond the web logs to see what kind of people are reading my blog and how they relate to it. Simple plain curiosity.

The survey was opened on 2 December 2004 and closed 10 days later with a total of 14 respondents. I presume I would have caught a few more occasional visitors had it been up longer, but based on log activity, reader comments and e-mail, I estimate that my core readership, defined as people who follow the blog with some regularity and tend to read much of it, currently consists of roughly 20 people a few of which are fellow powerlifting bloggers. It has been a great pleasure to get to know some readers via e-mail and blog comments; it is these kinds of life signs that motivate a blogger to put some effort into what otherwise easily feels like an endless monologue sucked into the great unknowns of cyberspace.

Without further academic analysis, here are the results. A HUGE thanks to everyone who participated. Next year again perhaps?

1. Where do you live?
Africa (0)
Antartica (really!?) (0)
Asia (0)
Australia/Oceania   7.1% (1)
Europe   42.9% (6)
North America   50.0% (7)
South America (0)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
2. Gender
male   92.9% (13)
female   7.1% (1)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
3. Your age
under 20   7.1% (1)
20-29   42.9% (6)
30-39   28.6% (4)
40-49   14.3% (2)
50-59 (0)
60-69   7.1% (1)
older than 69 (0)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
4. If you have a journal or homepage that you would like me to know about, please enter the address here
# Response
1 http://joeaverageboard.proboards17.com/index.cgi?board=Logs&action= display&num=1101610639
1 http://liftingheavy.blogspot.com/
1 http://www.99shadesofgrey.com/fitness/
1 http://www.celestialstudios.ca/~rstinn/
5. What strength sports, if any, are you currently engaged in?
Powerlifting   78.6% (11)
Olympic lifting (0)
Strongman   7.1% (1)
Highland games (0)
Bodybuilding   21.4% (3)
Weight training for sports (martial arts, hockey... and so on)   35.7% (5)
Other: basketball, baseball, football, bowling   7.1% (1)
6. Training experience in strength sport(s) checked above
None (0)
Less than a year   14.3% (2)
1-3 years   35.7% (5)
4-9 years   14.3% (2)
Over 10 years   35.7% (5)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
7. What strength sports, if any, have you competed in?
Powerlifting   42.9% (6)
Olympic lifting (0)
Strongman (0)
Highland games (0)
Bodybuilding (0)
Other: bowling, baseball, football   7.1% (1)
Other: kickboxing   7.1% (1)
8. How did you first find out about Under the Bar?
Search engine (Google, Yahoo etc.)   57.1% (8)
Link from another site or blog   7.1% (1)
Online discussion forum (0)
Someone told me about it   14.3% (2)
Stumbled on it while surfing a non-training section of tsampa.org (0)
Can't recall   14.3% (2)
Other: link form your comment on my blog   7.1% (1)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
9. Roughly how long have you been a reader?
less than a month   7.1% (1)
1-6 months   35.7% (5)
7-12 months   21.4% (3)
more than a year   35.7% (5)
I'm not a reader (0)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
10. Have you read the whole blog (archives)?
Yes   57.1% (8)
No   42.9% (6)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
11. Do you think you will still be reading Under the Bar 6 months from now?
Yes   85.7% (12)
Maybe   14.3% (2)
No (0)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
12. Which of the following best describes how you check Under the Bar for updates?
I use the RSS feed or a web service (0)
I browse in once a day or so   35.7% (5)
I browse in a few times a week   50.0% (7)
I don't visit so often, so there is usually something there whenever I visit   14.3% (2)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
13. Which of the following best describes how you read Under the Bar?
I read all or most posts regardless of topic   71.4% (10)
I scan most posts for valuable powerlifting information skipping the personal ramblings   7.1% (1)
I read the personal ramblings, but tend to skip the powerlifting mumbojumbo   14.3% (2)
I occasionally check what's up front and might occasionally read a post or two   7.1% (1)
I don't actually read anything, but the pictures are nice (0)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
14. Have you ever contacted the blog author via e-mail or blog comments?
Yes   35.7% (5)
No   64.3% (9)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
15. Do you watch the video clips?
Yes, all or most of them   50.0% (7)
Yes, sometimes   42.9% (6)
No   7.1% (1)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
16. How true are these statements on a scale from 1 to 5? (1=Strongly Agree 2=Agree 3=Undecided 4=Disagree 5=Strongly Disagree)
Average rank
1 2 3 4 5
Under the Bar is a trustworthy source of powerlifting information  (2.0)
The blog entries are excellently written  (2.1)
The minimalistic web page design is nice  (2.1)
Under the Bar is an important part of my surfing habits  (1.8)
Presented links usually point to highly interesting material  (2.1)
The photos complement the entries excellently  (1.9)
17. What is best about Under the Bar?
# Response
1 Da hjuumaa dät kän pii gliind in pitwiin da lains...
1 easy reading, regular, truthful, informative
1 Following your workouts and progress.
1 I love the videos and excellent powerlifting ideas.
1 i'm always interested in reading other peoples lifting experiences
1 Ideas for new exercises, and interesting discussion on exercise technique. The videos are also superb, and have clarified exercises on a couple of occasions; as well as being an excellent way of showing progress.
1 It gives an inspirational view of a fellow weightlifter trying to get stronger.
1 It is by and for the average serious trainee. It is intersesting seeng how the average lifter uses and progresses on various programs.
1 It is good to hear from someone that is struggling to recover from a serious injury (I've had 3 back surgeries).
1 The wealth of information, rare video clips, and author's true take on workouts and ideas.
1 Your thought process and videos are awesome. I'm not a professional powerlifter, so to see someone going through what I'm going through complete with videos is invaluable. And your craftiness with building things and the articles about back rehab are a must read. I have saved everthing off this site into a weightlifting archive on CD, it's a keeper.
18. How, if at all, has Under the Bar influenced your training?
# Response
1 As I train (usually alone) in my home-gym the blog motivates to put in the extra effort on days when the weights are extra heavy.
1 Have incorporated some Westside ideas as a result of what I have seen on the site.
1 I actually use the 4 day westside schedule that you use because of how it was layed out on the site. Has worked great
1 I have learned a lot about basic powerlifting training and theories, like the Westside protocol. Plus, I get great ideas for new exercises to spice up my workouts. The videos are very helpful for learning proper form of these new exercises.
1 It got me interested in Westside philosophy.
1 It has been through the author that I have acquired what I think is the most informative and interesting powerlifting training video I have ever seen. Without this website I would have never even known about the training program!
1 more good exercises and how to do them. less self-pity
1 Nja, int så mycki men det visste du väl. =)
1 nothing yet, but i'm new :)
1 See above. I also want to do grip work like you do, too, and that Prilepin Program works awesome - - - I used it to increase my T-bar row from 105 lbs to almost 170 over the course of 4 months. The charts of your use of several Westside splits have also hone my training.
1 Under the Bar has demonstrated the benefits of regular training over a period of time, which helps to provide motivation for my own training.
19. How could Under the Bar be improved? Comments on anything from content to web design appreciated.
# Response
1 Cannot think of anything.
1 Cna't think of anything off the top of my head. It is easy to navigate, interesting, and frequently updated. No complaints here!
1 I am no specialist at this but I think the website is great. It is defintly the best of all powerliting websites, and that is the truth. I've looked at most of them but tsampa.org is the best looking, most organized, and most informative.
1 I can't think of a single thing. It's the most organized and informative blog I have read, and one of the websites I read most.
1 I wouldn't change much, perhaps a forum can be added
1 maybe training with some more advanced lifter, and his comments. some comparison between different training styles like russian and westside ym. on beginner lifter. something about longterm phases, and how do them like perusvoimakausi, maksimikausi, vakautusjakso
1 The blog is already excellent, though a few things which could be considered are : provision of a search engine (for blog entries) information regarding the author's current stats and goals links to similar blogs - in a single place (in addition to the current mention in various posts) Honestly though, I love the blog the way it is - and wouldn't feel an urgent need to change anything at all.
20. Could you consider training with the author if you were to meet?
But of course!   78.6% (11)
Maybe   14.3% (2)
No   7.1% (1)
TOTAL   100.0% 14
21. What is your preferred prize if you win the lottery?
Captains of Crush gripper, Trainer   7.1% (1)
Captains of Crush gripper, I   7.1% (1)
Captains of Crush gripper, II   7.1% (1)
Captains of Crush gripper, III   7.1% (1)
Captains of Crush gripper, IV (0)
A pair of minibands (jumpstretch)   21.4% (3)
Roman: The Training of the Weightlifter (translated Russian manual recommended by Westside Barbell)   21.4% (3)
Westside Barbell T-shirt (size asked if you win)   21.4% (3)
TOTAL   92.9% 14