Dynamis is a Greek word that is usually translated as the will to win. And as a PED, it is without equal. Dynamis is why some athletes always perform better in a competitive situation. Getting 2 or 3 lifters together who are lifting similar numbers in the same weight class always leads to improved results. If you are an 85kg lifter totaling 300kg, there is nothing quite so effective in raising your total to 310kg as training day after day with 2 or 3 lifters who are totaling 310kg. No one likes to lose.
In the book The Lucifer Principle Howard Bloom talks about how rats who lose a fight have lower testosterone, are less aggressive, and actually lose weight. A similar thing happens to humans. Wrestlers who lose a match have lower testosterone than those who win. Losing takes a toll on us whether we are rats or humans. So it seems quite natural that we have an inborn drive to win.
Some athletes quite naturally have more will to win than others. When eastern block weightlifting coaches used to test young kids to find their suitability for the sport of weightlifting, the tests often included a running event. They weren’t testing to see how fast the kids could run, they were testing to see how hard they would push themselves. Would they stop after 2 or 3 laps, or keep running until they were the only one left who hadn’t quit and given up. Alexander the Great said he did not conquer the known world because he was the best general, or because his armies had outnumbered their enemies, he said it was because his soldiers had Dynamis. The will to win.
I have noticed something lately in the Pendlay WOD group. A more competitive atmosphere, even a bit of shit talking from certain people. I think the lifter with the most Dynamis, or will to win, of anyone I have coached was Donny Shankle. What set Donny apart wasn’t a big squat or a beautiful jerk, it was a will to win. I don’t think I have seen as strong a will to win either before or since. But I am starting to see shadows of the same attitude in some lifters in Pendlay WOD. And I love it!