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How to Rapidly Strip Off Unsightly Body Fat, Build Athletic Power and Iron Lung Capacity, and Forge a Physique Able to Withstand All Odds!
- Pat Flynn RKC and Som Sikdar RKC, ChroniclesOfStrength.com
Why The Kettlebell Swing?
If I had to pick just one exercise to rule them all what would it be? Or, if I were only able perform only one movement for the rest of my life what would it be? And If I had a nickel for every idiot who cuts off their sleeves and bastardizes this movement, how rich would I be? The answer to the first two questions is hands down the kettlebell swing. The answer to the third would involve me writing this report from some sort of yacht… Let me be very clear about something… YES! You absolutely can perform the kettlebell swing wrong! Anybody who tells you that there isn’t a “wrong” way to do something is either completely full of crap or trying to sell you on a bunch of nonsense, and/or just too stupid to understand how the human body works and should be completely ignored. Please allow me to give you my definition of “wrong” – Which is doing anything in a manner that isn’t right! See, I can be funny sometimes… Now let’s define right – which to me means performing a movement in a SAFE and EFFECTIVE, and EFFICIENT manner. Safety. Effectiveness. Efficiency. Those are my three inputs for the function of “right”.
I have also seen a lot swings that are efficient in terms of performing them in the most “economical” means possible. Safety – Hands down the most important element of a proper swing. Efficiency – Learning how to put in fewer inputs for your desired output.I see a lot of swings that may be effective for some purposes but wholly unsafe and unsustainable in the long run. not before it! (note: this is NOT about performing your swings in a lazy manner…) . The point I’m trying to make is that you can have anyone of those elements (safety. Effectiveness – What good is performing a movement if it isn’t going to get you closer to your goals! 3. This comes after effectiveness. Too many people are jacking up their necks and backs with poor posture and positioning. but highly ineffective for what that person is trying to achieve. efficiency) without any of the others and still be performing the swing wrong! And if I had to rank those elements in order of importance it would be: 1. effectiveness. 2.
Do you know why babies move so well. and he used the power of his posterior chain to lift his relatively heavy toy off the ground. especially if you wish to ward off injuries. weight lifting routines. and why most adults do not? It’s because babies don’t have any other choice! As we age. When I talked about efficiency above. or just the daily stresses or life. Have you ever seen a baby or a toddler pick something up? It’s amazing how well they move. I don’t care if you are an athlete or not – learning how to produce and reduce force from your hips in an imperative life skill. Huge metabolic effect! The kettlebell swing is a hellacious fat torching weapon – of that there is no disputation. I wasn’t referring to energy conservation. Your ACL will thank you! 2. If we don’t learn how to reduce force properly and actively through certain ranges of motion (especially with our hips – which is exactly what the kettlebell swing will teach us how to do) we can very likely end up in a horribly awkward and often painful position when we rely on our skeleton and passive structures (tendons. reduction. Fantastic Proprioception/Body Awareness. ligaments. like we’d have you doing in our SuperHero Development Program! 3. The ability to reduce force through the eccentric (downward/negative) portion of a movement is a crucial skill for all walks of life – as this skill alone is what can save our backs and knees from our athletic endeavors. his heels were planted. because the kettlebell swing is all about energy expenditure and maximum calorie burn. I just saw a friend of mine’s baby “deadlift” about a month ago and it was one of the most pristine hip hinges I have ever seen! The baby’s spine was neutral.5 Reasons Why I love the Kettlebell Swing 1. etc) to do it for us. we get stronger. and redirection. Learn force production. and we can start to “cheat” movement and get away with poor posture . This movement recruits multiple energy systems and muscle groups which guarantees a massive caloric “after burn” (meaning you burn more calories throughout the day even when you are done swinging)! If you want to lose body fat rapidly – get your nutrition in check and swing more.
I then explain to them that the kettlebell by itself is an inanimate object. If you want a great looking posterior. not the kettlebell itself! Now even a “proper” kettlebell swing will have some “shearing” and “compression” forces on the spine. The other way is to learn the kettlebell swing. studies have indicated that muscle endurance in the back seems to have a profound effect on warding off the likely hood of back problems. the kettlebell swing is the tool for you. It’s amazing how many people come to me and try and convince me that kettlebells messed their back up. Babies don’t have that strength yet. and it is quite evidence based that many back problems are related to “gluteal amnesia” or what I like to call “weak asses”. I will teach you have to reclaim a proper hip hinge and learn how to “pick sh*% up” without wrecking your back. and you better believe that it’s going to be worked like never before when it comes time to first swing a kettlebell! Firm. Great for your back! But only if you do it right! Otherwise the kettlebell swing may very well jack your back up. but it’s true. or knees – a skill many babies know the importance of! 4. One way you can learn to move better is to watch a 1 year old. so they have no other choice but to operate from a strong and organized position. and functional glutes (that turn heads) are a common consequence of high rep kettlebell swings. tight. neck. so that your spine can handle those forces. What I aim to do is teach you how to minimize those forces through proper technique. Great for Your Ass! Pardon my French. Your behind is the primary engine for the kettlebell swing. .and positioning. The kettlebell swing is the king of back endurance movements! 5. and that I find it hard to believe that it suddenly came alive via some sort of freaky voodoo magic solely to sabotage their back. Furthermore. What I then make clear is that it was how they used the kettlebell that jacked their back up. Because when done “right” the kettlebell swing will strengthen your glutes. Through the presentation below.
How to Do the Kettlebell Swing (Without Jacking Up Your Neck or Back!) Never ignore the importance of proper posture and/or position. This is why training . To a degree. so their role as prime movers is inhibited. Tonics muscles are meant to stabilize and are often referred to as our postural muscles. not just the kettlebell swing. but proper posture and safe positioning is also where you will be strongest! Allow me to explain… The human body has tonic muscles and phasic muscles. This goes for any exercise. But when you DO lift from an organized. or seen anyone who has? Why do you think that no one can back squat a grand (or any significant weight for that matter) on such an unstable surface? Part of it has to do with balance. but why would you ever want to take a chance when it comes to your body? Stop hanging off your passive structures when lifting! Just stop it! Not only that. but the majority of it has to do with how much work your phasic muscles have to do to stabilize you on such an unstable surface. your tonic muscles can now play their tonic role. and your phasic muscles are freed up and ready to do their job and move some serious weight. It’s not a matter of if. Phasic muscles are meant to mobilize and are often deemed our “prime movers”. this is exactly what is happening when you lift with poor technique. it’s a matter of when. Your phasic muscles shift to play a tonic or stabilizing role and are unable to operate at their full potential as prime movers. Now when you lift with poor technique/posture you end up “wasting” your phasic muscle. Think about it this way… Have you ever done a squat on a bosu ball. centrated position. something will eventually break. If you constantly operate from a poor position. since they are inherently recruited to help stabilize your poor position. Some folks are certainly “luckier” than others.
You will need some sort of broom stick like object… .from the position that will make you safest. is also the position that will make you strongest! Let’s put this into some context with the kettlebell swing shall we? The Kettlebell Deadlift (learning to walk before we run) Just as a baby earns its right to walk by first learning to crawl. then I highly recommend that you invest your time into this drill. you must learn your right to swing by first learning to deadlift! The kettlebell deadlift is a precursor to the kettlebell swing because this is where you will learn a proper hip hinge. Let’s get right down in it… The first drill we will use is one of my favorites for teaching how to hinge with a neutral spine. neutral spinal alignment. Click below to watch the video on how to perform this drill. and what it feels like to generate power from your hips. Why is it so important to hinge and lift with a neutral spine? Well it’s not if you don’t care about long term back health… But if you do care about the integrity of your spine.
I cannot stress the importance of mastering this drill enough before you move onto handing an external load! Your spine is the center of your universe. as well as transfer more of the load from your glutes to your spinal erectors (a much weaker. If you have ever had a back injury. what a lot of folks do to prevent this is overcompensate by overarching their backs. muscle group!). then you know just how traumatizing and crippling that can be! A lot of folks are simply lifting from an overarched (overly extended) or flexed (rounded) position. Conversely. which is slowly but surely DESTROYING their backs! When you lift with a rounded back. Trust me when I say that is never an ideal position to lift from. you are heavily relying on the passive structures of your spine to support the load and suffer an incredible amount of unnecessary shear (tearing forces) on your spine because of that. and primarily postural. And here’s why this isn’t such a great idea either… When you operate from a position of hyperlordosis (overarch in your neck and low back) you crunch your spine together and rely on the bony .
” You need to watch out for any overarching in the low back and neck. compression. all of the muscles that should be working to stabilize the spine such as your multifidus. please visit Charlie’s site at CharlieWeingroff. until it becomes second nature to you. and wear and tear on your spine because of this. diaphragm. lies somewhere in the middle – which is a neutral spine! This is the position where your inner core stabilizers can play their role and keep your spine safe. the most important piece that I want you to take away from that drill is “how do I maintain the natural lordotic and kyphotic curvature of my spine as I enter deep hip flexion.” What that means. strong. Charlie Weingroff. and working ten years from now! This “stick drill” as I call it. so you can go ahead and turn down the inner core stabilizers. pelvic floor. will help you learn what it should feel like to hinge with a neutral spine. I don’t care if it is a kettlebell or a pencil! So clearly. etc. If you want to learn more about the nitty gritty scientificals behind this. Click Below for the Tutorial Video on the Kettlebell Deadlift! . Once you are proficient with that drill. as it usually does. Do this drill as often as you can. we can then begin to apply the movement to the deadlift. your tailbone/sacrum tucking under. are all being inhibited (not turned off. Do no proceed onto the deadlift until you are confident in your ability to hinge with a neutral spine. just not working as much as they should be) and you again end up creating an unnecessary amount of shear. and/or any rounding in your upper back.com The solution. is “how do I keep my back straight as I hinge.approximity (disks in your back moving closer together) which in turn inhibits your inner core stabilizers. transverse abdominus.” In turn. What happens is your body sends a signal to your brain which says “we have support down here from the bony structure of the spine. This is all quite evidence based and was taught to me by genius strength coach Dr. Don’t ever pick anything up off the ground again without thinking about maintaining a neutral spine.
Stand on top of a kettlebell with a shoulder width stance and toes pointed slightly out (we want about 20 degrees of external hip rotation – so this may translate to anywhere between a 10 to 30 degree turn out of your toes). However. 2. I never liked that cue.Here are some of the key points abbreviated: 1. as it doesn’t put your scapula (shoulder blades) into their centrated position (where the scapula lays flat along the rib cage). Lat engagement simply locks all of this in. rather than down toward a curb! 3. Engage your lats and suck your shoulders “into their sockets”. Think you are sitting back towards a bench that is just out of reach. Hinge don’t squat! Your shins (tibia) should be vertical throughout the kettlebell deadlift – that means your knees should not translate forward. and ensures that the kettlebell does not pull your shoulders forward when you deadlift or swing. . The position of your scapula should actually be mildly protracted – HERE is a little drill you can use to find that position. do not pinch your shoulder blades together.
Click below for the video! . Push your heels into the ground. The goal here is now to learn how to generate power from our hips. but your head may not! Time to Add Some POWER to It! This next drill will take us right up to where we need to be before we start swinging a kettlebell. including your neck! Your eyes may look up as you lift. and practice it often before you dive into the swing. but never lean back! 5. and drive your hips forward to finish the lift. while keeping our arms relaxed.4. squeeze your butt. Keep your spine neutral throughout. Stand tall at the top. Practice this drill.
Enjoy! . CLICK below for the video.The Kettlebell Swing Are YOU ready to have some FUN???? Let’s start swinging some bells already! The first drill we are going to use to learn how to time the kettlebell swing and understand what it feels like when we are being “pulled” into deep hip flexion. is what we call at RKC the “pendulum swing” .
Below is the final video in the series. Click Below for the video! . please watch it as many times as necessary for you to absorb all of the information and complete a most excellent set of kettlebell swings.Putting It All Together Let’s see what we’ve learned. It’s now time to attempt a full set of kettlebell swings.
and a sharp exhalation through the mouth on the upward portion of the swing. Diaphramatic breathing match – a compressed inhalation through the nose on the downward portion of the swing. No shoulder forward position please. . Glutes and abs are braced at the top of the swing and there is no leaning back or overextension. Neck is visibly “packed” and cervical spine remains neutral throughout the movement. Shin/tibia is vertical at the bottom of the swing (as far as physics will allow…) and the movement is clearly a “hinge” not a “squat”. Heels are planted firmly on the ground at all times. Lats are engaged and shoulders are sucked “into their sockets” throughout the movement.The Kettlebell Swing Check List Here is a list of what I would look for in a “proper” kettlebell swing: Neutral spine (“crown to coccyx alignment”) throughout the movement. No rounding or overarching in the back.
Hips and knees extend fully at the top. but do not hyperextension. Bell floats to about chest height. . Handle of the bell does not pass below the knees (this helps to ensure a nice tight hinge) That is by no means an all-inclusive list of everything I covered. but includes some of the major and more important elements of a safe and effective kettlebell swing.
And lastly. First off the projection of force for a kettlebell swing should be out. particularly for the AC joint. not up. Start packing your neck in now and save yourself from some potentially serious pain/discomfort down the road. Squatty Swings. then a swing with a rounded or overarched back. but it comes down to this. Instead you should focus on pushing your chin back (like you are trying to give yourself an unsightly double chin) and keep your head and neck neutral throughout the swing. 2. this often puts the shoulders if a very poor position. Always have . the tendency will be to over-extend your lumbar spine (low back). The squatty swing isn’t necessarily unsafe. Swinging Overhead.3 Common Kettlebell Swing Mistakes (and what YOU should do about it!) 1. There are a variety of drills you can use to fix this problem. Cervical extension leads to a destabilized neck – no wonder so many folks suffer neck issues with high volume swings. So by that definition I could therefore classify it as wrong! But ultimately I would rather have someone have a “squatty” swing. So if you extend or overextend your cervical spine. Last time I checked the cervical spine is still part of the spine. Think broad jump rather than vertical leap. If we want to go up we can just snatch the kettlebell. There is no truly justifiable marginal benefit to swinging overhead for the marginal costs associated with doing so. 3. and any breakage in the kinetic chain is sure to affect the entire chain. What I mean is that what happens at your neck will typically trickle down to your low back. but I would consider it ineffective (or less effective) when it comes to developing the skill of force production and reduction with the posterior chain. This one is just silly. What should you do about it? Stop swinging over-head. Cervical Extension. rarely do I see any nincompoop swinging overhead without severe overarching in their back. Secondly.
Every single rep you should focus on how quickly can I extend my hips and my knees and explode out of the bottom of the swing. Ten reps of two hand kettlebell swings should be more than enough to have you sucking . the kettlebell swing is about power production. Please refer back to the first deadlift video in the series for a drill you can use to pattern deep hip flexion (hinging). 4. Lack of Effort. Remember. then you can work towards swinging optimally. Don’t hold back.yourself and clients swing safely at first.
and that is OK! I’d be surprised if you could with no prior kettlebell experience! Never are you to sacrifice form for more reps or more weight. and there will be workout B.Your Kettlebell Swing Workout Primer Three days a week. . 20 minutes a day. This program is designed as a primer to gear you up for our SuperHero Development Program and to give you an idea as to how effective kettlebell training truly is for rapid fat loss! Do not be fooled by how “simple” these workouts appear on paper. Simple they are indeed. That is all the time you need to “sacrifice” in order to see a radical change in your body and athleticism over the next 14 days. Please excuse my severe lack of creativity. but easy they are not. and watch as your power and endurance drastically amplifies! While you are to train three days a week. you will be alternating between two workouts. You may quickly realize that you are unable to complete some of these workouts in their entirety (even though they only last 20 minutes). Stick to the program. There will be workout A.
Workout A is as follows: Put 20 minutes on the clock.” Meaning you swing for twenty seconds and rest for ten seconds. Swing for fifteen seconds. Rest one to two minutes between each block. Tabata intervals are four minute blocks of “20 seconds on” and “10 seconds off. Continue this cycle until the 20 minutes are up. continuing that sequence for an entire four minute period. . Done. Workout B is as follows: You owe me four rounds of Tabata intervals with kettlebell swings. Rest for fifteen seconds.
5. If you seek your limits. you have to have your nutrition in check! (Cough. no matter how hard you try! Whether your goal is to lose fat or to maximize your athletic potential – proper nutrition is paramount! Check out our Metabolic Reset eBook or enroll in our SuperHero Development Program and learn how to eat in order to optimize your hormones for maximum fat loss! 7. You can’t out train a bad diet. Every swing is to be as crisp. Cough) . 3. and as “perfect” as you can make it. I have no doubt you will find them.S 2.W. if you make the commitment to this program. But remember. powerful.Th. you WILL see results. then back off! This isn’t a contest. Structure your routine for the next two weeks as follows: Week 1 Week 2 Day 1 A B Day 2 B A Day 3 A B Could it possibly get any simpler than that? I’m not kidding folks. Listen to your body! If you feel that the volume (amount of work) is too much to handle at first.Rules of the Game 1. Never go to failure or push past your current abilities. (Note: No one will ever achieve the “perfect” swing. Train on non-consecutive days – such as M.F or T. Properly mobilize and warm up before and after each workout! CLICK HERE to download my free mobility report and implement it into your routine! 6. Get your nutrition in check! Seriously. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try!) 4. SuperHero Development Program. I guarantee it. But don’t.
consider adding in an extra day of rest and/or mobility work. especially when first starting out. Holy crap. If you are VERY sore. Easy does it! Remember. Relax! This is normal! I remember the first time I did a couple sets of kettlebell swings – I couldn’t get out of bed the next day! Take an extra day off if you need to. and stay as active (lightly active) as possible. Use good judgment and common sense. My back hurts from swings. perform some light mobility and flexibility work. I promise! Q. that’s sort of a hard call! But most men start with a 16kg kettlebell and most women start with an 8kg or 12kg kettlebell. Hurt is bad. Walk around. Soreness and discomfort are often inevitable. be sure you have full medical clearance before embarking on any sort of weight training program. The soreness won’t be that extreme for long. I did my first swing workout now I’ so sore I can’t move! Help! A.Frequently Asked Questions Q. If something hurts. stop immediately. Well since I (probably) don’t personally know you (unfortunately!). because that is rarely the case! Q. and be sure to get enough rest. What size weight should I use? A. but don’t always think that lighter is better. Secondly. Can I add in an extra day of working out? A. figure out what the problem is. and what you need to do to fix it. be able to differentiate “hurt” from discomfort or soreness. what should I do? First off. Hit the foam roller. when it comes to exercise you should always strive to do less (believe it or not)! Doing more than the absolute bare minimum will only hinder your recovery time and impede your progress! Stick with three days for now and after your two weeks of training with this . It may very well become your new best friend! Q.
com. Everything! Seriously. be sure to first establish a solid foundation of proper movement from which you can build upon. 8-week training cycles. We have a ton of great resources over at ChroniclesOfStrength. more mobile. you are emailed your workout routines every week.primer are up. Hate is such a strong word… . Best of all. and more athletic than ever before. please CLICK HERE! Q. What that means is that no matter what level you are at. then check out our SuperHero Development Program if you truly want to take it to the next level! Q. Please be sure to pay us a visit sometime. leaner. What is the SuperHero Development Program? A. I’m so glad you asked! The SuperHero Development Program is a kettlebell strength and conditioning eCourse (meaning it’s an online training course) that is currently comprised of six. What else can you do with Kettlebells? A. and so long as you have a pair of kettlebells. can perform these routines in the comfort of your own home! For more information on the SuperHero Development Program. we love the company! Q. Why Do You Hate Crossfit? A. but before you really start to dive into the incredibly diverse world of kettlebell training. the SuperHero Development Program can make you stronger.
Pat is the author of over five strength. including the immensely popular Birth of a Hero: Metabolic Conditioning training program and the SuperHero Development Program.com one of the most popular strength and conditioning blogs online today.Additional (mostly free!) Resources 7 Ways to “Cook” The Kettlebell Swing The Nincompoops Guide to The Kettlebell Swing “Race Up Swing Mountain” Partner Workout Physique Transformation Bundle Package!!! Who Is Pat Flynn? Pat Flynn is the founder of ChroniclesOfStrength. conditioning. . and kettlebell training books.
please be sure to pass it along to all of your friends! And if you have any questions.com Please lift responsibly.Pat is primarily known for his expertise as a fat loss expert. and his uncanny ability to breakdown complex learning objectives into simple and easy to understand components.com . Pat is a guest lecturer on biomechanics and presenter at West Chester and Millersville University in Pennsylvania and has a St. . Bernard Puppy named Lola! You can add Pat as a friend on Facebook HERE And Follow Pat on Twitter HERE @PatFlynnCOS If you enjoyed this report.Pat Flynn Chief Awesomeness Operator (CAO) ChroniclesOfStrength. unorthodox approach as a strength coach. please contact Pat directly at Hardstylekettlebells@yahoo.
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