Kettlebell Training – Part I

This is Part I of my Kettlebell training series. I would like to keep up with this on a weekly basis, but with nothing but more tough hikes scheduled for the next month, I’m not sure if my attendance will be frequent. So this will be an ongoing serious.

So 15 hours after ending the 5400′ gain of pain, and after getting a somewhat productive 7 hours of sleep, my legs felt good enough to be put through more pain.

I’ve heard about Kettlebell training for awhile now, and have always wanted to try it out. I was looking for something to supplement my leg strengthening exercises that I normally do on at the gym (squats, lunges, calf-raises, etc.). So early Sunday morning I set out to Clover Park in Santa Monica for some fun.

But why Kettlebell? I wanted to try it because it looks different from any other type of exercise I’ve seen. Also, the instructor and my brother are real advocates of it, and they wouldn’t waste their time doing something that doesn’t work. Also, while I like doing isolation exercises and the aesthetic results they produce, I enjoy doing full body exercises more.

So here’s a rundown on what happened Sunday:

7:15am: Warmup exercises to get the blood flowing and the heart rate up.

7:30: Learning the basics.

Me along with two other newbies were split up from the main group to work on the basics. Deadlift/squat and the swing. Getting the basics down took sometime. Proper form and technique are important here since a deviation in it can result in injury or a loss of power.

(Note that the videos below are not attached with the Kettlebell Los Angeles group. These are just ones that I found on Youtube.)

The squat I have started doing in the gym so my muscles were already prepared for these movements. Of course a kettlebell is a lot different than a straightbar, so that took a little getting used to.

Next up was the swing. This was really different and caught me off guard. It incorporates the deadlift motions, except that it’s more violent and explosive. This motion is pretty important since it sets up the snatch and clean movements.

8:15: At this point, we did a lot of sets of both the deadlift and swing. The swing even more so because we did declining sets where we start with 10 reps, then 9, then 8, and so on. Being new, I thought my workout was over. The main group had set up to do a circuit round of differing routines. The first minute of the first video sums up the circuit routine.

That was pretty much the morning session. By the end, my legs were pretty weak. Also, I had worked out with the lower weighted bells, so I’m a bit nervous to try this with heavier ones. Also, doing nonstop swings during the circuit was really, really tiring. I haven’t been fatigued like that in awhile.

I also stuck around after and checked out the after sessions. One of the workouts I would like to learn is the Turkish Getup. Pretty intense.

Check here for more information on Kettlebell Los Angeles.

Below is the session that I attended, check out their full schedule here:

Santa Monica – Open Level Kettlebell Class
Instructor: Dr. Mark Cheng, RKC Team Leader
NEW Location: Clover Park, in the northeast corner just off the parking lot.
2600 Ocean Park Blvd., Santa Monica
Time: Sundays 7 – 8:30 AM
Cost: $20/session cash only

That sums up my first experience with kettlebell, and it didn’t disappoint. I’m looking forward to Part II.

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This entry was posted on Monday, January 19th, 2009 at 7:03 pm and is filed under Exercise & Nutrition. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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