Over the past few years there has been a challenge going around within the kettlebell fitness community. 10000 kettlebell swing finished in 30 days.
The first time I heard 10000 kettlebell swing challenge was from Lisa Schaeffer and Kettlebell INC. Here….
Recently there has been hype from the workout written by the legendary strength coach Dan John for T-Nation.
Interestingly enough these are two really different arenas that are both using kettlebells. T-Nation is definitely not a predominantly kettlebell based ezine. When I think of T nation i think back to the days when i first got into training after high school in the early new millennium. Basically lots of bodybuilding and powerlifting training and nutrition. Some of the most influential writers in the industry have written for T-Nation and they have been putting our article after article almost every second for over a decade. Kettlebell work is BOUND to pop up sooner or later just because its almost the new kid on the block so to say in the training world. All over the world athletes are realizing the benefits kettlebell training can develop for their body. And with Dan Johns article there are going to be alot more people giving it a try.
While Im not here to butt heads with a legend who has written more articles and books than I have drank cups of coffee in my lifetime, I am here to bring up specific points as to whether doing the 10000 kettle bell swing challenge in one month will be good for you or possibly detrimental. First off here is the article that was recently in T-nation.
excerpt from The 10000 Kettlebell Swing Challenge:
“Without challenges, the human body will soften. We thrive when we push our boundaries, reach goals, and blast personal records.
We perform better, we look better, and we feel alive. Get this straight: you’re either progressing or regressing.
There is no maintenance phase. Moderation in training can easily turn into stagnation. And moderation is for sissies. So if we want to improve, we have to seek out new challenges, struggle, and win.
The 10,000 Swing Kettlebell Workout is just such a challenge. And it will rapidly transform your body in only four weeks.”
Im always thinking of injury prevention and training progression at my gym. Kettlebells have become popular and even sold at every Walmart between 5 and 50 lbs. Many people have a misconception that kettlebells are bad for your back mostly due to a person they know has hurt their back when using them. These are usually the people that purchase kettlebells from stores and try to learn from youtube or in their basements that have had no proper surpervised training. Remember without hands on instruction, from a KNOWLEDGEABLE , EXPERIENCED coach, videos and books cannot correct your form. and Definitely watch this video and DONT DO THESE 5 MISTAKES..
Even if you think its perfect, chances are its probably not, or you are lying to yourself…… Of Course its the same everywhere. How many disabling snatch fails did NOT make it to the workout fail compilation from garage boxes all over the country in the past few years?? I shudder to think of it.
In my opinion the 10000 kettlebell swing challenge is NOT a workout to be attempted by trainees that….
- Have Less than one year of kettlebell experience under their belt unless they are athletes with a high training age. Even so it is still a heck of a lot of volume for an exercise although a full body one, for someone not used to the physics of a swing. Lots of balance and changed lines of pull involved here. If you broke it up evenly it is 333 kettle bell swings per day for 30 days in a row. Thats the most even you can get. But thats not missing ONE day out of 30. Do you think that that is feasible?? While it is easiest to have a kettle bell sitting anywhere at home, usually something will happen and you’ll miss a few days. For some people this may be all the workout that they need and if so they lose out on a lot of other great exercises . Heres where Johns T Nation article comes in handy but still i don’t recommend it for newbie exercisers.
- Kettlebell Sport athletes getting reading for a competition. I say this as many of us at swing are getting ready for two competitions around march and april. this will be just too much work on the forearms,,grip and torso of someone who is already doing hundreds of snatches and heavy double cleans per week. The exception to this would be if you counted each clean and snatch as one of the reps as it does still involve hip drive just not as much as the kettle bell fitness swing. ( remember the kettle bell two hand swing with a hip drive or snap produces a totally different trajectory or flight of the kettle bell that is optimal for cleans and snatches for a long duration such as kettle bell sport)
- Have Issues with the hip , wrist, elbow or neck Usually tendonitis. If you already have a case of tendonitis such as golfers elbow or tennis elbow , this can aggravate it by making it worse. Be smart. Pain is there to tell you something . Don’t just put a bandaid on it, fix it. Get massage use compression and try the ARMAID Massage tool daily, along with magnesium or Mike Mahlers Recovery oil as these can help with relaxing the tissue pulling on the tendon. Don’t just keep going through pain as you’ll find away around it and usually develop a compensation or bad movement pattern.
Who the 10000 kettlebell swing challenge MAY be PERFECT for…
- The person who is experienced athlete who knows a lot about how their body reacts especially if they are getting overstressed and overtrained. This can be exceptionally good for crossfit athletes looking for even more hip drive in a wider range of motion than olympic lifting provides.
- a Powerlifter or strongman who is looking to add more conditioning into their program in a time that they are not specializing for a meet.
- anyone who is training for the apocalypse.
- Intermediate ketttlebell trainees who are looking for a tough challenge that will have lots of support by others who are keeping track of their daily swings. Motivation basically. There are a few groups on Facebook that you can join. Remember as the BigFoot motivation post said there are many things that can affect your daily motivation. . Watch your stress levels i repeat watch your stress levels. if you find you are not sleeping well perhaps you are pushing yourself too hard.
- Some one looking for fat loss. As Dan John noted this may be a really good thing to do during Intermittent fasting . Take some BCAAs, Green Tea, perhaps some carnitine, and get to swinging in the morning . Keep it lighter for this and watch your heart rate. not looking for all out sprints here. You’ll need some glycogen for that….
- Person looking for some muscle mass. Doing the 10000 kettlebell challenge with over 53 lbs and tell me won’t gain a little strength…. as long as your eating to gain size… and recuperate from your workouts .
My recommendations if you do this 10000 kettlebell swing challenge …
- Don’t have a ” I will finish this if it kills me” mentality. It just may mess you up pretty good. Have you ever heard the story of the runner who ran through knee pain only to tear their ligaments to shreds?? insert ligament hear_______
- Do not use the same weight the whole time. Skip around. HEavy leg day? use a heavy kettle bell. Do different rep ranges and sets. Use different weights. Do drop sets. Remember this is supposed to be a shock to your body so play around with stuff you normally don’t do. If you swing a 24kg every day your gonna get hell bored. Try different swings. Flip Swings if your REALLY advanced. Alternating hand swings, moving swings, lateral moving swings. KEttlebells are great for developing athleticism and dexterity so USE them . A two hand swing for 10,000 kettle bell swings? Hell with that! I need variety.
- Spread it out. I found myself last time I did this trying to get 300-600 kettle bell swings at the end of my workouts. Blah.
- Don’t be afraid to stop when you think you should. 1000 away from the end and you have a possible Sacroiliac joint issue?? just stop. we all know you’re tough. do this for yourself not others. A bad back injury usually lasts a lot longer than hurt pride for not finishing a freaking exercise challenge. Be smart and Train Smart.
- Definitely take care of your hands. No matter what you think, bloody hands and ripped callouses are not a badge of honor it means you can’t train optimally the next time…. 10000 kettlebell swing
For more tips on the 10000 kettlebell swing challenge , please visit Lisa Schaeffers NOFEARFITNESS.COM article on this challenge.
You can also see PAT FLYNNs 300 swings a day article which is basically 10000 a month..
Have fun if you decide to try this.
Pictures from last years 10000 kettlebell swing challenge .