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  1. #1
    Registered User. Fred_The_Cat's Avatar

    Join Date;
    2nd August, 2012.
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    kettlebells (and how not to use them)

    Last year my resolution was to eat better and exercise more. I accomplished that goal, and I did it very poorly!!!

    I had read some articles about how the kettle bell swing was a full body exercise capable of burning 1200 calories an hour. I thought- bingo! What more do I need to do? I started swinging and before long, my calorie burn had gone from 150 calories in 10 minutes to 600 in 35 minutes. That almost extrapolates to the 1200 an hour benchmark. But things didn't work out like that...

    Last month I noticed severe lower back pain sitting at my desk for extended periods. It has gotten to the point where I have to get out of my chair, get in a sit up position on the floor and slam my back against the floor to crack it. Fortunately, I have expert advice to fall back on.

    My brother majored in Exercise Science and was a star athlete. He asked about my pain and immediately pointed out that the cause was an improper exercise regimen. It turns out that doing that same exercise repetitively had indeed indeed strengthened me- but in ways that caused muscular imbalances. He recommended doing yoga to get my flexibility back and a full circuit workout on youtube to strengthen other parts of my body.

    So, I chose a 40 minute workout thinking I could hack it because I could do 40 minutes of swings- WRONG!!! I was exhausted within the first 5 minutes of cardio warmup and obliterated by 10 minutes. It highlighted the fact that certain parts of me have gotten stronger this year, but others have remained very weak.

    As David Byrne would say- "How did I get here?"

    I thought I was being clever by choosing the most efficient exercise and believing the hype that it was a full body workout. I did some googling and settled on the swing. This is where things went horribly wrong. First, google searches land you on pages written by content writers, not experts. And with the faddy nature of diet and exercise, this is dangerous territory. Places like Men's Health, Livestrong and raved about the kettle bell swing being the most efficient "full body" workout you could do. The efficiency part was dead on- but what they did not tell you was that it was NOT a full body workout. It exercises a large number of muscles, and over time, will strengthen those muscles to imbalance.

    I now live in minor agony thanks to being lazy, trying to take shortcuts and trusting "expert" opinion that was anything but. This underscores a very important fact- if you want to do something google is your starting point, not your destination. Had I just read a book on exercise and did it right I would not have ended up here. Let's hope this straightens out...

  2. #2
    Registered User.

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    17th June, 2013.
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    kettlebells (and how not to use them)

    Kettlebells are a great tool.

    Swings are a great exercise when programmed and executed correctly into a regime. In fact, swings are the type of exercise that a lot of people need in their program.

    But 40 minutes of just swings is too long, as you gave found out.

    I never do any more than 10 minutes or 200 swings in a single session, and that is done no more than twice per week.

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