Sunday, August 23, 2009

Lighting the spark once again

A friend of my wife's was visiting this weekend. She came to the UCLA RKC a year ago to watch me finish on Sunday and has been interested in kettlebells since then, but never found the time to try them. I arrived home Friday night at 9pm after a full training day to find her ready to learn how to use kettlebells. Like rust, at the RKC we never sleep, so instruction of hard-style basics and the kettlebell swing began. Within 5 minutes she had what I can honestly describe as a perfect hard style swing, hip snap included. To be fair she has very good body awareness, so I didn't have to spend ten minutes explaining what it means to keep your back straight. What fun! This allowed us to bang out a couple hundred swings on the 12 kg. before deciding it was too light, and moving up to the 16 kg. Lest your hearts be troubled, all safety protocols were observed and her life was never in danger. At least, not the imminent kind. Instruction of the Turkish Get Up commenced, and the toolbox was now stocked.
People talk about how us kettlebell people are like a cult. I couldn't agree more. What is important in life? Family? Job? Financial security? How about your health? Not just your health, but your ability to feel strong and powerful. Not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. When you have not had control over your body and your health, and you suddenly realize that you have the tools to get it back, you feel powerful. Not in an 'annex Poland' way, but in a way of knowing you will be there for your grandchildren, you will not lose decades of your life because you can't walk without pain, you will be in control of your vessel.
I've seen so many people make amazing changes through use of the hard-style method that it is impossible to ignore. I'm often unkind in my words regarding so called 'traditional' training methods. It's not that I'm a snob, I just can't forget what I know. This week I watched a few amazing things happen. A female client who was initially honestly intimidated by the prospect of doing a get up with a 6 kg. bell was getting up the 12 kg. for multiple reps. Another female client hit her first legit tactical pull up. Not a chin up, but an overhand pull up. When she first came in she could barely hang on the bar. Another female client hit her first chin up with no specific chin up training. She just jumped up and nailed it. How did she do it? Pressing ladders. Shoulder connection/lat activation+tension generation= chin up.
This is what real training is about. This is why we do this.


  1. great post man, excellent. and you are 100% right, this is what real training is all about.

  2. Great post, Jordan. I love this: "I'm often unkind in my words regarding so called 'traditional' training methods. It's not that I'm a snob, I just can't forget what I know."
    It would be intellectually dishonest for you to regard "traditional" methods any other way.

  3. Thanks Nikki, and thanks for the review.