Thursday, April 15, 2010

Kettlebell Training

Kettlebell training can be a fantastically effective way to not only gain the type of fitness we’re looking for, but also a marvelous way to lose unwanted weight. Kettlebells are a very strenuous form of total body workout, and if you combine this type of physical conditioning regimen with a sensible eating plan, you won’t be able to NOT lose weight! No other exercise programs are going to deliver the kind of fat melting that kettlebells can. Kettlebells can help shape, strengthen, tone and promote fat and weight loss MORE than any other type of training you can name.
Many women worry that by training with heavy weights they will gain too much muscle mass and start to look masculine. Not true. Women don’t naturally possess the testosterone to build that kind of mass. Men have ten to fifteen times the testosterone levels that women do, and that coupled with a massive calorie intake and incredibly hard work will build that kind of body for SOME men. For women, you’ll simply gain much more strength, and a lean, sexy physique.
Some things to remember when training with kettlebells would first include making sure that you use proper form when lifting the kettlebells from the floor. This means to makes sure that you lift with an arched back, not a rounded one, and to endeavor to keep your shoulders back and square. No rounding forward of the shoulders! This keeps the bulk of the work onto the scapula and lats, not the shoulders and neck, where a lot of kettlebell injuries come from. Keeping your shoulders back, or “packed” will result in a better workout posture and allow you to use your maximum strength available when performing the exercises. By rounding and over-extending the shoulders, you open yourself up for the possibility of injury, and ask very small muscles to do the job that larger muscle groups ought to be doing.
Keeping a proper angle in your wrists while performing kettlebell exercises is also extremely important. You want to keep your wrists very straight, and do not bend them. Besides the obvious strain that bending them puts on your tendons. For most - except a few more advanced kettlebell techniques - the wrist is held straight, so practice this as a matter of course, especially for the basic exercises.
Try and keep a balanced position with your head and neck, neither too far forward nor backward. It’s best to keep your head aligned with your body, that is, if you are bending over forward, your head will be naturally aligned in that aspect as well, not straining to stay forward and erect. One of the oldest maxims in sports is that where the head goes, the body goes, so make sure not to overdo this by bending too far in any direction. Stay as natural as possible.
FYI - A study observed two groups of college students over a period of a few years. A standard battery of armed forces Physical Training tests was used which included the following: Pullups, a standing broad jump, a 100 meter sprint, and a 1k run. The control group followed the typical university physical fitness training program which was military oriented and emphasized the listed exercises. The experimental group just lifted kettlebells. No other training of any kind. In spite of the lack of practice on the tested drills listed above, the kettlebell training group showed better scores in every one of them.
NOTE: For most fitness classes (step, spinning, muscle, etc) you burn calories at an effective rate - BUT your metabolism returns to its regular rate within 30 minutes. An intense Kettlebell class can leave your metabolism revved up for several hours. 12-48 hours! How’s that for a workout?!
Yes, Kettlebells are one of the most effective ways to get into shape, and to top it off, there is no impact on the joints. You can burn calories, blast fat, build strength, increase endurance and gain flexibility – all in one workout.

No comments:

Post a Comment