View Full Version : Kettlebells and other fitness schtuff
Who has worked with kettlebells out there? I started working with Pavel's ideas some weeks ago and I'm horribly impressed. My long-time alignment issues have all but completely changed.
Wondering what successes people have had, if any? Or not?
DVD reviews on the way..
Ive had access to full sets of Kettlebells for a long time now, and the new owner at my school is a Kettlebell Instructor under Pavel. While I havent been using them as much as Id like, even the little bit I do use them has been remarkably beneficial. Im hoping to get a small set for here around the house, but am currently spending my "KB-Fund" on Rec Center fees... One of the few things KBs dont help much with is swimming ;) and cant replace that sauna :D
Are you just doing Pavels KB stuff or have you looked at his other info? Power to the People, and Relax into Stretch are very interesting... and I would LOVE to lay my hands on his SWAT videos.
One thing I appreciate in Pavels work is that he doesnt care about how you look in the mirror, its all about how functional your strength is. Who cares if you can pick up a car, if you cant pull yourself through a window or over a wall?!?!? What does it matter if you have 22inch biceps if they dont have the muscular endurance to carry the same workload as arms half that size? What good is being all cut up and ripped, if you cant manouver your body away from danger?
Naw, not just the kb stuff. I started with Resilient, Relaxing into Stretch and Forced Relaxation. Now I'm working with Naked Warrior too.
I like it too...for the same reasons. It's funny how you can run into "personal trainers" that look good, but have no concept of strength.
Well, thats part of the problem (from my perspective) with most trainers. They cater to, train for, and thus really only know the parts that involve the way they and their clients look.
Most people that go to personal trainers are trying to loose weight, get big, or get "sculpted", they arnt there to get strong...
I picked up the Pavel KB video at the library and have been wanting to get a set ever since. But, the cost is a bit much to justify right now.
I've been trying to do some of the Naked Warrior workout for now as well but I'm still short of one-armed/one-legged workouts. Trying to work up to them and making some progress I think but I'm not as disciplined as I need to be.
I also got some of the stretching and superjoing videos from the library to see if I could reverse the arthritis in my shoulders. That has helped some though I'm not sure I'll ever get rid of all the pain.
Great stuff that Pavel puts out.
I thought about trying to make some KBs.
Are they really that much better to be worth the trouble /exspense over dumb bells.
Something I like paying with is a scuba belt. I have a soft pellet belt that weighs about 30lbs. Because its a belt and not a vest it puts the added weight at your center of gravity. That makes it easy to do your other activities.
Kettle Bells look like a cannon ball with a handle.
Cubble bells look like long bowling pins.
I dont think I posted that link but I have seen it. I think there are better ways.
The order you work your muscles out in, rest time / heart rate .... can have a big effect.
Anybody can make a hard workout... 1000 squats and 500 push ups. Id rather a smarter workout. If you dont have a smarter workout get started now... 1000 squats and 500 push ups is going to take a while.
I do quite a bit of personal training (10-15 a week).
I have had all types of people. From 400lbs house bound, general fitness
(want ot lose weight look better) to sports competitors ( marathons, tennis, golf, baseball, soccer .... even darts).
I do everything from body weight, weights, off balance, aerobic ,anaerobic, fitness, strength, power,agility, weight loss, sculpt, injury prevention, negative reps ( those from the Push Up Challenge know this creates a intense burn)...
Working on whats going on their heads is more important than what you do with their bodies.
I need to get myself back on the program, clients are starting to look better than me.
Im not into the body building look but if you want to do personal training you need to be your own advertisement.
Are they really that much better to be worth the trouble /exspense over dumb bells.
In my opinion, when your focus is actual combat fitness, yes they are worth it. They arnt worth it if you want to get all swollen up and walk around like Hanz and Franz.
They are good for almost everything you can do with a DB, plus several other movements, and unlike DB, they FORCE development of your stabilizers as well as help to "strengthen" the connective tissue.
Plus, while they may look expensive on the computer screen, in reality, you only need 3-4 KBs to cover your physical development from super newbie, to advanced "girevik"... How many "cheap" DBs will it take to cover you from raw beginner to advanced lifter?
All that being said... Id say that a well equipped Iron pile would be good to go with 4-5KBs, a basic Olympic weight set, a pull up bar, and plenty of room for bodyweights and KB swinging.
"they FORCE development of your stabilizers "
Stabilzers is the way to go. Strength, power, injury prevention, posture muscles all in one.
Any one not doing it START.
Homemade KBs can work to help you determine if you really want to use them long term to justify the cost. Fill a milk jug with buckshot or even sand at the beginning. It will give you a feel for the kind of workout you'll get. They're not exactly the same but its a poor-man's start.
_Naked Warrior_ is a reference to a Pavel Tsoutsaline book on bodyweight exercises - primarily one-armed pushups and one-legged squats. Tsoutsaline puts out a lot of great stuff for strength training. You can find a lot here:
Id say that a well equipped Iron pile would be good to go with 4-5KBs, a basic Olympic weight set, a pull up bar, and plenty of room for bodyweights and KB swinging.
Got and edit for this list... add in a jump rope!
Thinking it over, a person could have a VERY functional "gym" with just a little open space, some KBs, and a jump rope.
A guy in the USAF Pararescue group brought up the ecellent point on his websit, that KBs are awesome for military units (theres a reason Spetsnaz teams liked them) for the simple fact that they are multi functional, small, easily cared for, and (compaired to an olympic weight set or machines) very light. A single person could keep the entire "gym" under the foot of his cot, and the space between to General Purpose tents (the big ugly green canvas ones) would make a great place for swinging. A jump rope is a PERFECT addition here. It takes up NO additional space, weighs virtually nothing, and provides cardio when your KB sets dont.
Posting this alsoreminded me of a compettion Pavel does. I forget its name, but it uses snatches, pistols, and WEIGHTED pull ups as its events... it only has 2 weight divisions based on how big the KB your lifting is, and tests muscle groups and abilities that are bebificial for SpecOps/SWAT type jobs. While us 'Mericans tend to think of the bench press as the ultimate measure of strength, for combat conditioning, the bench press is one of the least functional lifts... more important are legs, abs, back, and shoulders... which is what Pavels competetion tests for specifically.
So I've read this thread and Googled Kettle bells and think they're great. I like the milk jug full of sand or shot idea to get a feel for the workout, but I wonder, does anyone have a resource that demonstrates the actual excercise motions to use? and would a cinder block make a passible "poor man's KB"? I think it might not, as you can't wrap your hand around the grip, but it's definely not going to leak sand all over you. Buying a KB is definitly not in my budget right now.
Pavel's KB Challenge video/book has some exercises to use. But, now that you mention it, it makes me wonder if I shouldn't add some descriptions to my website since I haven't seen anything "free." I have gotten the Pavel books and videos thru the library. I'm also thinking it would be great to have some workout ideas posted somewhere - maybe I'll make a list of those as well and add to them both as I get ideas from others.
The cinder block idea sounds good...surely we could figure out a way to put a handle on it - safety is a problem here since I wouldn't want anybody to sue me if I suggested a method and somebody adds a handle that is not properly secured and drops the thing on their head or something. The milk jugs are borderline since the plastic handle can break and probably make a mess more than cause injury. The handle is the weak point in any ideas I've had.
I'll try to post a message if I come up with that page of routines. If anybody knows of one already in existence, I'd be interested in it too.
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