Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Most Fun You Can Have in 10 Minutes! (KB Fun that is)


Since starting my swing classes in January I've trained many students to increase their cardio finess levels within weeks, but few have kept training.....why? Because it's hard work! As amazing and transformative training kettlebells can be you still have to show up and do the work! I have a few students now that have put the time in and are now ready for a new challenge....


Mark and I have been training Max Vo2, every week, since it's introduction 3 years ago. I don't believe anyone has trained Max more consistenly than we have, in fact I'll go out on a limb and say that no one has trained it longer or as much as we have, which is why Kenneth Jay asked my brilliant husband, Master Instuctor Mark Reifkind to write the intro to his book, Viking Warrior Conditioning.....I even trained the "boost" protocol, designed as a peaking program for Max Vo2, for a few months last year, which I don't believe anyone else has done (it was freakin' hard!) Anyway......

Mark and I did a weekend workshop on how to train Max Vo2 a few months ago and now that I have a number of students snatching along with swinging in my classes I've added in a Max Vo2 class. Max V02 is a challenging workout for sure, but the point of training (as opposed to "working out") is to have a goal, a progressive plan for improvement. Sometimes for a race or meet, but for us non-competitve athletes, improving our fitness levels by increasing strength and conditioning. How do you know you're improving? Well, one way I decided to challenge a couple of my students was to test the SSST (10 minute Secret Service Snatch Test).


The SSST is a 10 minute "all out" snatch test for numbers. How many times can you snatch a kettlebell (12kg for women, 24kg for men) in 10 minutes, hopefully without putting the bell down, but you are allowed to put the bell down as many times as you need to. I first tested this myself a few years back and since then I've learned a number of strategies to help increase snatch numbers, but I've not trained specifically to re-test for it. I've also tested the USSST (Ultimate SSST) with the 16kg for 10 minutes! (that's next for my guys, lol).




So, this past Saturday, @ Equinox in Palo Alto, we tested for our "base line" snatch number. I went first, and then Meg, and then Gen. We all had the same feeling when it was over...."That was fun!" I didn't remember it being so much fun! Good Lord, it feels so good to do something so physically challenging in 10 minutes....it kind of gives your everyday training purpose! I'll put us all on a training schedule specifically designed to improve that baseline number in 12 weeks. We'll retest and see what happens!




Good job, no I mean, great job ladies! Let's see who'll go the distance.

9 comments:

Diana said...

I really need to try this to get a base down to see where I am at. Now that my snatch technique has been turned around 180 degrees (confident enough to NOT have to video tape it!) the snatches have been going really well. But I've concentrated more on the 2-handed swings lately. Up to 2.5 minutes work/30 seconds rest. Frickin' smokin' after that-damn, I LOVE these little bastards we call kettlebells! How anyone can do this for awhile and then NOT show up again to use them is just God forsaken STUPID! Why do I fear yet look SO FORWARD to you kicking my ass??!!! LOL!

neca said...

Tracy,

Do you have any video segments on youtube of snatching? I've been doing swings and clean & presses for months now and would like to add a bit more variation. (I'm nowhere near an actual instructor).

Take care,
Neca

Tina said...

Tracy,

Is there a place where one can read your description of the proper way to swing a kettlebell? I am interested in your style of training. I cannot do more than 20 swings before my lower back starts to hurt. How do you suggest building up so that I can actually swing long enough for it to be an actual workout?

NutsinBulk said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tracy Reifkind said...

Diana,

It's tons more fun when you do it with someone! Maybe on Sunday, the day after the HKC, instead of swinging we should go for this!

Although you should be sore from training all day on Sat., you won't be training the snatch, so you won't be "snatched-out, lol!

It's also possible to test Friday night, and it shouldn't wreck you for Sat., it's only 10 minutes afterall!

Tracy Reifkind said...

Neca,

I'm sure there's a video, in fact I remember Mark posting a video showing a front and side view for someone who requested it.....I think...

But as far as an "instructional" video, I try and stay away from those, instead only posting demonstrations of how I train.

Tracy Reifkind said...

Tina,

I suspect I know what you may be doing wrong that is causing your lower back to hurt, but without seeing your form I'm cautious to post my opinion. I'll have Mark reply to your comment with his expertise.

But to answer you question, as I mentioned in the previous comment I don't post "instructional" videos, not do I write intructional KB blogposts, there are plenty of books and DVD's that do that.

Of course nothing is as good as working with an RKC. I've had plenty of students come to my classes having learned from a book or DVD, and I have yet to meet one that does it right! The good news is that they pick up the adjustments quickly and make the corrections needed.

neca said...

Thanks Tracy - I'll poke around. I have videos, but I've found that watching someone with correct form and then watching my form in the mirror is very helpful!

Gen said...

Just saw this post...love it! Thank you for your awesome coaching and training, Tracy. With your help, I'm doing things I didn't think I could do.