Swing A Heavy Kettlebell

When teaching someone the kettlebell swing, there is such a thing as “too light”.

The kettlebell swing is an inherently explosive movement. It requires a powerful, almost violent extension of the hip to bring the weight through its full range of motion. Most of the movement, in fact, is simply the after-effect of that initial surge of energy: the gradual slowing of the bell as it reaches the apex of its swing, the brief moment of weightlessness at the top, and the acceleration as it drops back towards the legs. Yes, there is a degree of exertion in slowing the bell in preparation for the next repetition, but for the most part a successful swing depends on that first explosive movement. Once you start relying on another muscle group – once your shoulders start squeezing, or your biceps start flexing – you know your kettlebell is too light, and you rob yourself of most of the swing’s myriad benefits.

However it may look, the point of this entry isn’t to give a lecture on the kettlebell swing, but to note that sometimes, you need to have something push back to know you’re doing it right. Sometimes, realizing things are too light or too easy is a key indicator that something is wrong or can be improved. It is an oft-repeated mantra of this site that once in a while, you need to go hard to make a real difference.

Ease up on the running. Lighten the push presses if you’re not feeling it.

But if you’re going to swing a kettlebell, make it heavy.

 


 

Workout

5min Row @ progressive pace (worked up to 1:55/500m for the last minute or so)

Superset

3 sets

10x Push-up

10x Ring Row

Alternating Ladder

10-1x, alternating between exercises

Bench Press @ 60kg

Bent-over Row @ 2x16kg

Final

500m Row for time (1:45)

5min Stretch

Notes:

  • I am forced by scheduling, medicinal side effects, and good old laziness to compress my training sessions. I don’t always get it right, but I feel this session was one of the more productive ones. 
  • I’m making it a point to finish each session with a sprint of rowing, biking, or burpees. The idea is that the accumulated effort will have some effect on my overall cardiorespiratory power and conditioning. Time will tell.
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