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View Full Version : OK so now I have kettlebellitis, how to combine w/gym workouts?



Minotaur
01-23-2012, 11:11 AM
I noted in my journal that I did my first k'bell workout yesterday, and it really kicked my ass. (http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=128342801&p=818682321&viewfull=1#post818682321) I was sweatin' and suckin' wind, and enjoyed every ****ing second. :D I'd like to incorporate them into my gym workouts, as a cardio workout, and additional strength because they are so different than regular gym equipment.

My gym split is [usually] like this:

Mon, legs.
Wed, chest & tris.
Fri, back & bis.
Sun [usually], shoulders & tris. I like doing tris. :o

I'm thinking of doing the k'bells and the gym days in this order:

Mon, legs (@ gym).

Tue, Double swing, one (or double) arm row (k'bells @ home); pullups with the Iron Gym door bar. Don't laugh, this ain't no Shake Weight, the Iron Gym is pretty good.

Ww14MvFQD4U

Wed, chest, shoulders (1 shoulders exercise) & tris (@ gym).

Thu, Floor cleans, double squat (k'bells @ home).

Fri, back & bis (@ gym).

Sat, off.

Sun, Floor press, shoulder press, upright row, overhead extensions (k'bells @ home).

I'm trying to keep similar exercises w/ the k'bells and gym as far apart as possible.

So, is this overkill, overthought, too much?

ironwill2008
01-23-2012, 11:17 AM
AFAIK, Marius is one of the few regulars here who trains consistently with kettlebells. If he doesn't see this thread, I'd suggest you PM him. I'll bet he'd be glad to help you.

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 11:20 AM
Thanks, I figure he'll be along at some point.

Btw, I forgot to mention an additional reason for getting into k'bells and the Iron Gym is for when I don't feel like going out to the gym, and want to stay at home to work out.

chodan9
01-23-2012, 12:04 PM
no kb's here
but I do have an iron gym
if you use it on your off days it will put your pullups through the roof

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 12:24 PM
That's great to know. I've used it a few times, and I like it. I just never stuck with it. My pull ups suck a fat one, so I'm looking to improve greatly. The dips leave something to be desired unless you raise the bar up on a sturdy bench so you can dip deep.

nixter
01-23-2012, 12:45 PM
I like to do the following with Kbs

6 double overhead presses
12 rengade rows (6 per side)
6 turkish get ups (3 per side)
12 one arm swings (6 per side)
12 one arm cleans (6 per side)

Do a full circuit without rest. Then see how many circuits you can do or do them for time.

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 12:52 PM
Thanks nixter. I did the routine as a circuit yesterday, 3 rounds. I did them as doubles... 10 double overhead presses; 10 double arm swings; 10 double arm cleans. Is there a big difference between doing single and double movements? I want to do renegade rows, but when I tried them once or twice, the 'bell seemed unsteady.

nixter
01-23-2012, 01:00 PM
Thanks nixter. I did the routine as a circuit yesterday, 3 rounds. I did them as doubles... 10 double overhead presses; 10 double arm swings; 10 double arm cleans. Is there a big difference between doing single and double movements? I want to do renegade rows, but when I tried them once or twice, the 'bell seemed unsteady.

Doubles are fine, it's just preference. The bell is unsteady during RR's but that's part of the point. You need to keep your weight centered over the bell and hold your wrist steady so that it doesn't tip. The type of KB you use will help though. Do you have a photo?

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 01:12 PM
Doubles are fine, it's just preference. The bell is unsteady during RR's but that's part of the point. You need to keep your weight centered over the bell and hold your wrist steady so that it doesn't tip. The type of KB you use will help though. Do you have a photo?

OK, didn't know the unsteadiness is supposed to be there. More likely it's to build core strength and coordination, I just read about them again. Looks like a quick alternating up and down.

This is them, Cap Barbell 25lb Kettlebell. Some day I'll work up to the 30s and 35s. :o

http://www.sportsauthority.com/graphics/product_images/p7612648dt.jpg

nixter
01-23-2012, 01:17 PM
Ok that's part of your problem. Pro kettle bells (whatever that means) are all the same size regardless of weight. The kind you have can make certain movements trickier.

http://www.bellsofsteel.com/categories/Pro-Grade-Kettlebells/

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 01:20 PM
OK, I gotcha.

flyineagle96
01-23-2012, 03:00 PM
I use them too there great

GuyJin
01-23-2012, 03:08 PM
Frank, right now I'm training with two 16 kilo and tqo 24 kilo k'bells just like the ones shown in the pic above. (No free weights and no bench, so the 'bells are all I've got). One of my favourite routines is to do front squats, overhead presses, rows and shrugs for 6-8 reps with the 16-kilo ones for two rounds, and then three rounds with the 24-kilo ones. I do all the exercises without rest and after it's all over, I take a two-minute break and then do some pushups and a couple of other exercises and then call it a day. No, I'm not going to get big from these weights but it does keep me in decent enough shape. YouTube has some really good vids on what to do.

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 05:31 PM
Frank, right now I'm training with two 16 kilo and tqo 24 kilo k'bells


16K & 24K!? :eek: Damn impressive.



just like the ones shown in the pic above. (No free weights and no bench, so the 'bells are all I've got). One of my favourite routines is to do front squats, overhead presses, rows and shrugs for 6-8 reps with the 16-kilo ones for two rounds, and then three rounds with the 24-kilo ones. I do all the exercises without rest and after it's all over, I take a two-minute break and then do some pushups and a couple of other exercises and then call it a day. No, I'm not going to get big from these weights but it does keep me in decent enough shape. YouTube has some really good vids on what to do.

I have to watch some of the YT vids. You know, when I get into something, I tend to jump in with my boots on.

I'm going to do a routine in a bit, to give them (and me) another shakedown. I'm going for double squats, floor presses, one arm or double arm or renegade rows (whichever I have an affinity for), and for the hell of it some overhead extensions for tris, and some biceps curls. I'll go for 3 sets of 8-10 reps, then if I can still fire any muscle fibers I'll do some work with the Iron Gym.

If no one hears from me for a few days, it's because I won't be able to use any muscles. :D

GuyJin
01-23-2012, 06:09 PM
Frank, have fun with them! For me, they're teh shiznit but I'd be careful on doing cleans and snatches--both movements can put an awful lot of strain on the wrists, so if you have wrist wraps then use 'em. I'd also check out dragondoor.com (Pavel Tatsouline's site) for more info--I think he has some routines listed there as well along with Mike Mahler's site).

Presses, rows, lunges, stiff-leg deads (done one at a time) front squats, shrugs, calf raises and pullovers don't strain my joints at all, but doing upright rows and curls do, so I use regular d'bells for those.:)

NorwichGrad
01-23-2012, 06:55 PM
+1 on enlisting Marius' kb knowledge. Make sure you add explosive lifts to your routine. Nixter's suggestion looks pretty good too. I don't kb myself, but I have athletes do the following:

One arm kb snatch 5 rep each side
Clean and press 5 rep each side
Goblet squat
Renegade rows
Windmill
Turkish get ups

Do as many cycles in 20 minutes

And you dont necessarily need a pair of each. Using different weights actually adds fun and challenge. For example, when you do renegade rows you could have 30 in right hand and 25 lbs the other. This clearly creates an imbalance but i is also functional. Another thing you can do is hold a 25 in one hand and say 10 in the other to create imbalance when doing goblet squats for example.

Enjoy kb. They are a great implement. If I were not an Olyer I would make them part of my training.

Minotaur
01-23-2012, 07:19 PM
Frank, have fun with them! For me, they're teh shiznit but I'd be careful on doing cleans and snatches--both movements can put an awful lot of strain on the wrists, so if you have wrist wraps then use 'em. I'd also check out dragondoor.com (Pavel Tatsouline's site) for more info--I think he has some routines listed there as well along with Mike Mahler's site).

Presses, rows, lunges, stiff-leg deads (done one at a time) front squats, shrugs, calf raises and pullovers don't strain my joints at all, but doing upright rows and curls do, so I use regular d'bells for those.:)

So far so good. I can type, but everything I do is shaky. lol

Yeah, I hear you about the cleans and wrists. I can't do barbell front squats because I don't have the wrist flexibility (contrary to common stereotypes :D :D :D), but cleaning the k'bells was pretty easy. I guess because it turns and flips. Weird to explain. I've had dragondoor.com in my favorites for a while, and I've been reading Mahler. Did I ever say I jump in with boots on. :p


+1 on enlisting Marius' kb knowledge. Make sure you add explosive lifts to your routine. Nixter's suggestion looks pretty good too. I don't kb myself, but I have athletes do the following:

One arm kb snatch 5 rep each side
Clean and press 5 rep each side
Goblet squat
Renegade rows
Windmill
Turkish get ups

Do as many cycles in 20 minutes

And you dont necessarily need a pair of each. Using different weights actually adds fun and challenge. For example, when you do renegade rows you could have 30 in right hand and 25 lbs the other. This clearly creates an imbalance but i is also functional. Another thing you can do is hold a 25 in one hand and say 10 in the other to create imbalance when doing goblet squats for example.

Enjoy kb. They are a great implement. If I were not an Olyer I would make them part of my training.

Thanks for the tips, there's a lot I can do and learn. I was going to get one of each of a couple different weights, but for now I'll use the pair. I see another 'bell or two on the horizon. :) I never knew there were so many things you can do with them. I found that doing swings, and cleans from the floor cannot be done delicately. I like the explosive component. It's something I've never had, and hope to develop.

ultim8-one
01-24-2012, 06:43 AM
You should check out Marianne at MyOMyTV.com.
1) she's pretty hot
2) she has some great kettlebell workouts
3) did I mention she's kinda hot ??

She has some good ideas for home workouts with kettlebells. It's worth checking out IMO.

Marius_Ursus
01-24-2012, 11:24 AM
If I were running a bodybuilding split, I'd use kettlebells strictly for conditioning.

Minotaur
01-24-2012, 12:19 PM
If I were running a bodybuilding split, I'd use kettlebells strictly for conditioning.

Oh yes? Do tell.

Well, I'm too weak to be a powerlifter and too fat to be a bodybuilder. :D

Srsly, I'm getting tired of the gym split. And not because I have some new toys. You know I asked about kettlebells a year or two ago, so this really isn't new. I've been doing variations of gym splits for the past 16+ years. I think that's why I got burned out last year and the year before. I'm [not seriously] considering quitting the gym, but I need a change of routine. If I did quit, I'd save $56/mo. That could go towards new k'bells when I'm ready, or some other home equipment.

Anyway... What would I do in the gym if I make the kettlebells the basis of my training? I read Mike Mahler's routine from this article http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/mahler78.htm (among others). I'm going to pick 2 exercises for each category and start with 5x5 @ 25 lbs, 3 days/week.

GnomusMaximus
01-24-2012, 12:25 PM
Here, try this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xd-wurjb9Uw

Minotaur
01-24-2012, 12:33 PM
Here, try this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xd-wurjb9Uw

:eek:

Ah kin do thay-at! :D Srsly, that's incredible.

When I was trying out some kbells @ Sports Authority, I found I can do deads with them, but I can never do them with a barbell again. With a barbell I'm leaning too far holding the weight. With the kbells, it's more like a sumo dl, which of course I never learned to do with a barbell. :rolleyes:

Marius_Ursus
01-24-2012, 02:12 PM
Oh yes? Do tell.

Well, I'm too weak to be a powerlifter and too fat to be a bodybuilder. :D

Srsly, I'm getting tired of the gym split. And not because I have some new toys. You know I asked about kettlebells a year or two ago, so this really isn't new. I've been doing variations of gym splits for the past 16+ years. I think that's why I got burned out last year and the year before. I'm [not seriously] considering quitting the gym, but I need a change of routine. If I did quit, I'd save $56/mo. That could go towards new k'bells when I'm ready, or some other home equipment.

Anyway... What would I do in the gym if I make the kettlebells the basis of my training? I read Mike Mahler's routine from this article http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/mahler78.htm (among others). I'm going to pick 2 exercises for each category and start with 5x5 @ 25 lbs, 3 days/week.

I'm having trouble explaining what I mean, but the gist is that if you're running a split where you're combining muscles by chains - like you have your training outlined above as a standard push/pull breakdown - you presumably don't want to exhaust the same chains on days you're not doing your standard lifting, right?

In that case I'd only use kettlebells for high-rep ballistics like snatches and cleans, and I would integrate those with some kind of bursting cardio work like rugby agility training or sprinting or both.

Of course, I don't know what the main goals in your training are. I mean,...well, shoot, there are so many variables involved with designing programs. Are you even planning on doing conditioning training? What kind of conditioning training, greater work capacity, fat burning, both?

See, the way I train combines barbell and kettlebell training and also using kettlebells in conditioning. If you're planning on using the kettlebells on days you're also doing barbell training or you don't care about fine tuning everything that goes into making the muscles bigger (the approach I take, strength over size...but it's nice to have both :D), you can combine the exercises any way you want as long as you don't exhaust yourself too often, and you're the only one who can define "too often"...again because of variables in diet, sleep, and how often you'd be training the same exercises or muscle chains.

If you want kettlebells to be the foundation of your training, it's pretty easy to keep it simple. Look up exercises and get as many on a list as you can. Then follow the basic guidelines of 3-5 exercises, 3-5 reps, 3-5 sets, 3-5 times per week as your starting point.

Minotaur
01-24-2012, 06:50 PM
I'm having trouble explaining what I mean, but the gist is that if you're running a split where you're combining muscles by chains - like you have your training outlined above as a standard push/pull breakdown - you presumably don't want to exhaust the same chains on days you're not doing your standard lifting, right?

I think I gotcha. It was my thought also that I would be doing the same muscles on different days, using two different methods. I don't want to wear myself out.


Are you even planning on doing conditioning training? What kind of conditioning training, greater work capacity, fat burning, both?

I liked that I got a good cardio workout from the kettlebells. At this point I'm trying to lose fat, increase my stamina and build strength. My guess is that I could get that from kettlebells.


If you're planning on using the kettlebells on days you're also doing barbell training or you don't care about fine tuning everything that goes into making the muscles bigger (the approach I take, strength over size...but it's nice to have both :D), you can combine the exercises any way you want as long as you don't exhaust yourself too often...

No, I won't be doing them on the same days. But I'd like to have both strength and size, not the kind just answering "how much do you bench?". I'd like functional strength. That's why I'd like to do bodyweight work too... dips, push ups, pull ups.


If you want kettlebells to be the foundation of your training, it's pretty easy to keep it simple. Look up exercises and get as many on a list as you can. Then follow the basic guidelines of 3-5 exercises, 3-5 reps, 3-5 sets, 3-5 times per week as your starting point.

I found some of that as a basic guideline already. That's how I experimented over the weekend. I did 3 sets of the basics (swings, floor presses, rows, cleans and presses). Mike Mahler has a ****load of articles and an e-book I'm going to start looking into.

Marius_Ursus
01-26-2012, 08:21 AM
Here's an article I wrote on my training. There's some mention of kettlebells that might help put things into perspective. I didn't mention kettlebells that much, but it does include how I use them on barbell lifting days. One thing I didn't mention in there is that one of the conditioning days I do on occasion is high-volume kettlebell snatches, and another conditioning day that's a lot of fun (to me) is the Deck of Cards protocol where you use a deck of cards assigning one exercise to each suit. Lift the kettlebell for however many reps are on the card from a shuffled deck.

Example:
Spades - snatch
Hearts - cleans
Clubs - press
Diamonds - side press

Let me know if anything's unclear, or you can just post in the discussion thread on the site, and I'll answer.

http://www.sweatpit.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=bear

Minotaur
01-27-2012, 07:57 PM
Aw crap, I didn't see this until now. And the reason I went back into this thread was because you said earlier exactly what it looks like I'm going to be doing... kettlebells for conditioning and fat loss, and gym workouts for size and strength, because it seems my kettlebells are too light for most things. http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=128342801&p=821784001&viewfull=1#post821784001

keyboardworkout
01-27-2012, 08:54 PM
I have pairs of kettlebells from 12 kg to 32 kg.

My routine is M-W-F

-Upper body push
-Upper body pull
-Squat
-Hinge (deadlift/trap bar/kb swing)

Monday is currently my barbell/axle day.

Wednesday is my kettlebell day. I usually do some sort of complex with double KBs like 5 cleans, 5 presses and 5 squats x 5 sets.

Friday is a mix of dumbbells, kettlebells and the trap bar.

I end each workout with 100 swings or snatches of some variation.

wakechica
01-28-2012, 02:41 PM
I do single leg squats with 30-45lb KBs, front squats ATG using a 65lb bell there's so much you can do. You can do flies, presses etc. You can platform dead with single or double kbs. the list is endless. I love all the presses and swings - swings if cone correctly can rinse your glutes. I've nearly puked doing swings and then could barely walk. I get slated for using them but hey they work me hard so i aint complaining! (and sorry not over 35 so just browsing, ya know....)

Minotaur
01-28-2012, 07:37 PM
Heh, I feel like such a wimp doing 25s, considering I used to squat and deadlift sets of 295-315. Though, my front squats using the 25s totals 50 lbs. I hold them at my shoulders and go down almost atg. My deads with them are sumo style, and I'll do Romanian deads. Yeah, I thought about doing flyes too. Thanks for the tips. Gotta think outside the box with these. :)

GuyJin
01-29-2012, 04:21 AM
Frank, it doesn't matter what you start with--it's what you'll do over the long haul. Cliche or not, that's how it is.

Right now, I've only got the 16 and 24 kilo 'bells (about 36 and 54 pounds respectively) and doing front squats, presses, rows and shrugs with them kicks my butt good! Thing is, I keep going in a circuit and don't stop at all. No, like I said before, it ain't gonna make me huge but that isn't the point for me right now. It has been getting me into better condition. That's all and right now for me it's enough.

You can do pretty much any exercise there is so just think outside the box, get a little inventive and the k'bell world is yours. Marius's advice was pretty sound. For me, I can't do snatches and I'm very careful when cleaning the 'bells up to my shoulders. The 'swing' is great with either one bell or two. It warms me up (I train outside at five in the a.m. and it is COLD here!) and I love it. Keep at it and don't worry about the weight for now.

wakechica
01-29-2012, 09:53 AM
Heh, I feel like such a wimp doing 25s, considering I used to squat and deadlift sets of 295-315. Though, my front squats using the 25s totals 50 lbs. I hold them at my shoulders and go down almost atg. My deads with them are sumo style, and I'll do Romanian deads. Yeah, I thought about doing flyes too. Thanks for the tips. Gotta think outside the box with these. :)

YOUTUBE is your friend :)

MyohMyTV (http://www.myomytv.com/) - Irish Girl who has her own Youtube channel for KB workouts

Ignore the title but the stuff he does here are killers for legs esp if you do it heavy:

fEIT3Ez8wts

Minotaur
01-29-2012, 10:06 AM
You're right. I told myself I wouldn't this do it this year, but I'm still expecting too much from myself. Over the past few days I realized I got a good workout with those 25s, because I am still sore. I put together a weekly routine that's not unlike my gym workout... lower body, push, pull.

Monday: Upper Body Push
Overhead Press
Floor Press or Flyes (I'll try them)
Push-ups with Iron Gym
Dips with Iron Gym

Wednesday: Lower Body
Double Front Squat alap (as low as possible... Geek alert!!! alap also happens to be a part of an Indian classical music performance :D)
Double Swing
Romanian deadlifts
Sumo Deadlift (trap bar if at the gym)

Friday: Upper Body Pull
Bent Over Row
Upright Row
Shrugs
Pull-ups with Iron Gym; I definitely need work on doing pull-ups.

This should work with either the kettlebells or the gym, depending on which I want to do on any particular night or week.

llahhsoj
01-29-2012, 11:38 AM
I wish my gym had a full set of kettlebells. We do some in the bootcamp class that I attend, but the highest one is only 30 lbs. I would love to add higher weight excercises into my routine. I work out at my local YMCA in a small town, so their funds are limited. There is talk that my gym is going to get a million dollar renovation and I keep suggesting to add a full set of bells.

wakechica
01-29-2012, 05:19 PM
I wish my gym had a full set of kettlebells. We do some in the bootcamp class that I attend, but the highest one is only 30 lbs. I would love to add higher weight excercises into my routine. I work out at my local YMCA in a small town, so their funds are limited. There is talk that my gym is going to get a million dollar renovation and I keep suggesting to add a full set of bells.

Make sure they get doubles as well... that really annoys me when they only have singles. Especially as when you get to the 60lb you can't add more as you can't double up on 35lbsers or whatever. KBs are quite expensive as well :S Especially the competition ones (all same size regardless of weight). I was tempted to get a couple of heavies (they also make great door stops ;)

keyboardworkout
01-29-2012, 06:45 PM
Since you just have the pair of 25s, put them both over your head in the lockout position and go for a walk. Also do that with them in the bottom up position at head level. These are both great core exercises.

Try some armbars.

aHVBrsysBUY

Minotaur
01-29-2012, 07:19 PM
Those must be killers. Great ideas, thanks! :) I want to try overhead squats with them, too.

keyboardworkout
01-30-2012, 06:40 AM
Also try bottom up squats.

3YEaFP2W6BI

Minotaur
01-30-2012, 08:40 AM
:eek:

I counted 5 or 6 reps. They look like killers too. Hot damn, there are so many variations of a basic movement. You could mix them up and work muscles you never knew you had. Holy muscle balance Batman, you could work other people's muscles. :D

keyboardworkout
01-30-2012, 09:54 AM
A "compound movement" is where you do multiple reps of each exercise before going on to the next. Clean x 5, Press x 5, Squat x 5 = 1 set

A "chain movement' is where you do one rep of an exercise then move on to the next. (Clean x 1, Press x 1, Squat x 1) x 5 = 1 set

Even though you have two light bells, they can still kick your butt.

Here they are doing a "bottom up" chain.


PvdPkxv_z5Q

Minotaur
01-30-2012, 10:12 AM
A "compound movement" is where you do multiple reps of each exercise before going on to the next. Clean x 5, Press x 5, Squat x 5 = 1 set...

Sounds like a circuit. That clean/press/squat is awesome. I've been checking Youtube, and hot damn there are some good workouts. Unless I'm off base, they're all variations on a few basics... squats, cleans, presses using a lot of balancing, and probably a lot of stabilizer muscles. And I'm using some body weight exercises to finish off... push-ups, pull-ups, dips.

keyboardworkout
01-30-2012, 10:19 AM
The mistake people make is trying to use kettlebells like they would dumbbells. That's not what they were designed for.

The movements where kettlebells excel are:

1. SWING
2. TURKISH GET-UP
3. CLEAN
4. FRONT SQUAT
5. MILITARY PRESS
6. SNATCH

Minotaur
01-30-2012, 10:26 AM
I agree with you wholeheartedly. I've seen the difference myself in just this short time. I can't do cleans, front squats or overhead presses with a barbell; I can't do overhead presses with dumbbells. But I found I can do all those with the kettlebells. I think it's because with the barbell and dumbbell exercises my hands and wrists are locked in position. With kettlebells, I have more freedom of movement. I'm not dismissing barbells or dumbbells just because I have new toys, but I think I've been missing out on a lot that would ad strength and flexibility.

Minotaur
03-04-2013, 12:46 PM
I still want to do kettlebell work, but of course I can't do anything pressing overhead with free weights. I might be able to do floor presses, but I can do overhead and chest pressing on the machines at the gym, so why bother trying with the k'bells? I hate leg work on machines, and I'll never be able to squat or deadlift again. I don't (and probably never will) have the flexibility in my shoulder to get my hand back far enough to grip the bar. And then there is the lumbar surgery issue precluding the squats and deads. But I can do suitcase squats or sumo type k'bell deads. Front squats with the k'bells are out, because I can't clean the right side, though I could set the weight on a table and grip it from there. Goblet squats are doable too. I think single-arm swings are out of the question for now. My right arm needs support and assistance. I still have 25 lb k'bells. I never got the 35. I (want it! I want it! I want it! *throws temper tantrum*).

So, I'm going to try suitcase and/or sumo squats/deads; goblet squats; shrugs, of course; maybe lunges (I hate lunges). All of these, except for the goblet squats (which should be a problem) don't require me to heave the k'bell(s) up, my arms can just hang down. I'm going to try double arm swings with one k'bell. But if I can't get past 1 or 2 reps because of any shoulder discomfort, swings will get scrapped for the time being. I hope I can do them because they are outfreakinstanding. I may try tomorrow, or if I don't have plans, maybe tonight.

NorwichGrad
03-04-2013, 01:58 PM
Minotaur,

Where you been, man? Good to see you back.

Minotaur
03-04-2013, 02:17 PM
Minotaur,

Where you been, man? Good to see you back.

Thanks. I've been underground. I had major rotator cuff surgery, 2 full thickness tears, subacromial calcification and split tendon of the long head of the biceps, which is what I was referring to about my shoulder. I couldn't work out since last June or July, so I said hell with it all. But I'm on the mend. :)

Minotaur
03-22-2013, 11:47 AM
I thought that since I already had this thread, I'd put my continuing kettlebell questions here instead of opening new threads. I know these sound like total noob questions :o but I'm really getting into incorporating kettlebells into my workouts. Is it OK to do swings 2 or 3 days in a row, on the off days from the gym? Curious because they're a whole body workout. I did two-handed swings with the 35 lb, 6 sets, 8-10 reps. Glutes and core were tight, traps and upper back helped put the brakes on the upswing. I think my form was damn near perfect. It was a taxing workout, because I was sweating and panting like an ox plowing the lower 40, but I didn't feel anything the next day. I can't do a one-hand swing with the 35 yet, just with the 25, which is even easier than the two-handed with the 35. And I did front squats with the 25s, 4 sets 6-8 reps; sumo deads with the 25s, 4 sets 6-8 reps. Oh yeah, then I went for a 40 min. 3 mph walk. Am I doing something wrong? I can't be getting that fit and strong this quickly... I gotta be doing something wrong.

Marius_Ursus
03-26-2013, 08:44 AM
I thought that since I already had this thread, I'd put my continuing kettlebell questions here instead of opening new threads. I know these sound like total noob questions :o but I'm really getting into incorporating kettlebells into my workouts. Is it OK to do swings 2 or 3 days in a row, on the off days from the gym? Curious because they're a whole body workout. I did two-handed swings with the 35 lb, 6 sets, 8-10 reps. Glutes and core were tight, traps and upper back helped put the brakes on the upswing. I think my form was damn near perfect. It was a taxing workout, because I was sweating and panting like an ox plowing the lower 40, but I didn't feel anything the next day. I can't do a one-hand swing with the 35 yet, just with the 25, which is even easier than the two-handed with the 35. And I did front squats with the 25s, 4 sets 6-8 reps; sumo deads with the 25s, 4 sets 6-8 reps. Oh yeah, then I went for a 40 min. 3 mph walk. Am I doing something wrong? I can't be getting that fit and strong this quickly... I gotta be doing something wrong.

Short answer: It depends.

Swings can be done every day if your programming is set up to allow that. You know, I've been thinking a lot lately about where the tipping point might be regarding food and how often and how intense you can go...but that's an entirely different topic.

Ready for a stream of consciousness?

OK, let's consider human movements. That's really where kettlebells give us the most benefit. Push, pull, squat, hinge, abdominal support...and swings are (in my humble opinion) the perfect hinge movement. Other hinges include deadlifts of all kinds (except sumo, and even those can be hinges depending on your specific form.

Swings are unique. You can do low (around 30 reps) volume or high (around 400 reps) volume and still not suffer in your other lifts...at least I haven't suffered. In fact I'm convinced that the swings have helped me improve not only my deadlift and squat and but also my throwing more than any other "accessory" exercise.

For the record I do Hardstyle swings.

EMG readouts of Pavel's swing have shown greater shearing force than squatting by exponential magnitude. I don't have Easy Strength right in front of me, so I can't look it up, but I remember the amount of shearing force on a trainee's lower back performing swings was incredible, yet the margin for inury is so slim that there's virtually no risk in that kind of force being exerted on the lower back, and it in fact results in incredible contractile force not only in the lower back but in the upper back, posterior delts, triceps, glutes...

Yes, not only CAN you do swings every day, you SHOULD do them every day.

Marius_Ursus
03-26-2013, 08:47 AM
YOUTUBE is your friend :)

MyohMyTV (http://www.myomytv.com/) - Irish Girl who has her own Youtube channel for KB workouts

Ignore the title but the stuff he does here are killers for legs esp if you do it heavy:

fEIT3Ez8wts

This guy is horrible. His form is horrible. That kettlebell under-the-thigh pass thing he's doing is horrible.

Don't follow his advice or his form or anything about him.

Minotaur
03-26-2013, 09:05 AM
Short answer: It depends.

Swings can be done every day if your programming is set up to allow that. You know, I've been thinking a lot lately about where the tipping point might be regarding food and how often and how intense you can go...but that's an entirely different topic.

Ready for a stream of consciousness?

OK, let's consider human movements. That's really where kettlebells give us the most benefit. Push, pull, squat, hinge, abdominal support...and swings are (in my humble opinion) the perfect hinge movement. Other hinges include deadlifts of all kinds (except sumo, and even those can be hinges depending on your specific form.

Swings are unique. You can do low (around 30 reps) volume or high (around 400 reps) volume and still not suffer in your other lifts...at least I haven't suffered. In fact I'm convinced that the swings have helped me improve not only my deadlift and squat and but also my throwing more than any other "accessory" exercise.

For the record I do Hardstyle swings.

EMG readouts of Pavel's swing have shown greater shearing force than squatting by exponential magnitude. I don't have Easy Strength right in front of me, so I can't look it up, but I remember the amount of shearing force on a trainee's lower back performing swings was incredible, yet the margin for inury is so slim that there's virtually no risk in that kind of force being exerted on the lower back, and it in fact results in incredible contractile force not only in the lower back but in the upper back, posterior delts, triceps, glutes...

Yes, not only CAN you do swings every day, you SHOULD do them every day.

Thanks. I found some conflicting info on the 'net (no! :eek: ) about doing them every day v. not. The consensus bore out what you said, that they can be done every day. After all, don't longshoremen, construction and factory works often heave heavy bags and other weight daily?

What I learned in reading more about them is that the hips and glutes are the prime movers, and the traps and upper back put the brakes on the upward movement.

At any rate, I like them and have felt no ill effects from them considering my lumbar surgery, though I haven't done them very often yet. Even if I can't do them every day for time constraints (e.g. a night at the gym), I can do them on the off night for the double whammy of strength and cardio.

stealpulse
03-26-2013, 09:07 AM
Great thread, I am getting ready to incorporate kettlebells into my routines, the info here is much appreciated!

Marius_Ursus
03-26-2013, 11:15 AM
Thanks. I found some conflicting info on the 'net (no! :eek: ) about doing them every day v. not. The consensus bore out what you said, that they can be done every day. After all, don't longshoremen, construction and factory works often heave heavy bags and other weight daily?

What I learned in reading more about them is that the hips and glutes are the prime movers, and the traps and upper back put the brakes on the upward movement.

At any rate, I like them and have felt no ill effects from them considering my lumbar surgery, though I haven't done them very often yet. Even if I can't do them every day for time constraints (e.g. a night at the gym), I can do them on the off night for the double whammy of strength and cardio.

That's exactly right. All the momentum comes off the hips. That's why you don't feel any pressure on your lumbar region, even though the force being exerted against that area is tremendous. The result is an incredibly strong lower back.

I've even found that a 5-10 swings before a set of squats makes the squats easier to perform. I suspect it's some kind of CNS preload effect.

Since your arms are maintained in a straight position through gravity and kinetic force, you're also correct about the traps, post. delts, lats, and triceps being contracted through the stopping force as you keep your feet anchored while your hips explode through the movement.

Good work, Minotauros. Keep it up.

Minotaur
03-26-2013, 12:20 PM
Thanks for the help. It's a real benefit to strengthen my lower back because of the lumbar surgery, without actually working it. Btw, the other thing I read is that if the weight turns down in your hands at the top of the movement, that is, the bottom is facing down, you didn't control the movement. So far that has not happened, even with the 35 lb. I use two hands, but I don't use straps. I think in this case straps are cheating. ;)

Added: this is how the top of the movement is supposed to be.

Marius_Ursus
03-26-2013, 12:25 PM
Thanks for the help. It's a real benefit to strengthen my lower back because of the lumbar surgery, without actually working it. Btw, the other thing I read is that if the weight turns down in your hands at the top of the movement, that is, the bottom is facing down, you didn't control the movement. So far that has not happened, even with the 35 lb. I use two hands, but I don't use straps. I think in this case straps are cheating. ;)

I think if you tried to use straps for a swing...well...that's causing a brain hemmorhage just trying to picture it.

I've never heard that piece of advice about the bottom facing down, but on the other hand I've never experienced the bottom facing down at the top of a swing. In fact given the momentum, I don't know know how that would be possible. You'd have to be swinging slow an' sloppy for that to happen.

I usually use two hands for swings, and I usually use my 24 kg kettlebell for swings. There's a lot to be said for proper form over more weight. Really, if the goal isn't to get stronger but to move more weight, kettlebells may not be the right tool to use. Keep it slow and steady. The strength will come.

Minotaur
03-26-2013, 12:35 PM
I think if you tried to use straps for a swing...well...that's causing a brain hemmorhage just trying to picture it.

Some things shouldn't be pictured, right? :D


I've never heard that piece of advice about the bottom facing down, but on the other hand I've never experienced the bottom facing down at the top of a swing. In fact given the momentum, I don't know know how that would be possible. You'd have to be swinging slow an' sloppy for that to happen.

That's what I mean, it would be slow, sloppy and probably too heavy. I don't remember where I read it, but it was recently. If my hands were getting slippery, I might chalk up or put gloves on, but even after 5 or 6 sets of 8-10 reps, that didn't happen.


I usually use two hands for swings, and I usually use my 24 kg kettlebell for swings. There's a lot to be said for proper form over more weight. Really, if the goal isn't to get stronger but to move more weight, kettlebells may not be the right tool to use. Keep it slow and steady. The strength will come.

Very cool. I'm in no way ready for 24 kg and wouldn't even try it. Though I was surprised at being able to use the 16 kg as easily as I did. I'm in it more for the conditioning and stability, and working my body in a different way.