Picking up the Kettlebell
It dawned on me, that maybe the reason that we have so many issues with people picking up and putting down the Kettlebell correctly is because we never showed them the right way. It could be as simple of a reason as its common sense to us, but not to people brand new to Crossfit.
Please watch this video: http://library.crossfit.com/premium/video/CFJ_Martone_KBSwing_ipod.mov?e=1304898633&h=ab74f357193845a314dc4c21d11bbe1b
I assume that most people do not have a subscription to the Crossfit Journal, so I’ll keep writing. Unless you really enjoy my ramblings, I encourage you to stop reading and watch the video.
First stand with the bell directly between the crooks of your feet.
Than stand it up just like a deadlift.
And you are ready to swing, clean, snatch, or whatever.
Sounds pretty simple and it is, but here are the faults that we commonly see.
1. People starting with the kettlebell too far in front of their feet.
Like lifting any object, the further away it is from your body, the greater the moment arm that acts upon both you and that object. This moment arm is simply the force of gravity acting a direction opposite to the one you want to go.
This means that the weight will be heavier because the force of gravity is heavier against it.
It also means that the sheer forces against your spine are greater because of the fact that there is a heavier load AND because you are in a mechanically disadvantageous body position where you are worse equipped to use your muscles to keep your body tight.
This means its not only harder to move and start the swing (which means you are going to be slower for those of you who are leader board obsessed), but that you will fatigue faster, and you will waste more energy moving the kettlebell. This is what I mean when I yell to make life easier on yourself during the WOD.
2. People start with the kettlebell too far behind them.
I’ve yet to see someone hit themselves in their own pair of kettlebells doing this, but I would have no problems laughing at them if they did.
The fix for this is actually pretty easy. You cannot lift in this position, you will wind up dragging it into the right or a closer to right position in order to get it started.
So once again, which is easier dragging a steel cannonball to you or taking a half step back.
3. From the side
These are the people who I understand the least. They will position themselves offset from a heavy object, heave, lunge, swing, and move around off balance while they either half rep or barely complete a simple movement.
I’m not even going to mention time and inefficiency, because all of my old points apply. I just find it odd that someone would do that. It has to be the worst and hardest way to do something. Crossfit is hard enough as is, if you want to up the intensity, come talk to me and I’ll add some burpees to any work out you want. At least than I know you wouldn’t be attempting to destroy your lower back.