Happy Thursday to you,
I hope you’ve been having a great week so far?
I’ve just been putting the finishing touches to my new 30-day kettlebell challenge which I’ll be launching next week. So look out for that in next weeks newsletter!
Today I’d like to remind you about the importance of getting clear on what you want to achieve from your kettlebell training.
For example, kettlebell workouts for sports will emphasis a lot more single-leg work along with multi-directional lunges. Whereas fat loss will work more on the large fundamental movements to get the job done.
Workout formats also change depending on your goals. For fat loss, circuits with shorter rest periods have been shown to be the most effective but for more muscle building and strength longer rests and overloading the movement pattern are better.
Each week I’ve been helping you understand a little more about how and why you should be using certain movements within your workouts.
This week I’d like to focus on the hip hinge which is the most neglected movement pattern but also the most important. It should also be your strongest movement.
The hip hinge is (or should be) used every time you pick something up from the floor. As its name suggests it involves hinging at the hips, keeping the back flat and pushing the butt back to enable the hands to reach the floor.
The hip hinge movement strengthens the back of the body from head to heel, in particular, the hamstrings, buttocks, and back.
Not only does the hip hinge use hundreds of muscles, great for fat loss, but it also conditions all the postural muscles that help counteract all the forward bending and sitting that we all do each day.
Plus for sports it develops strong and power hips for jumping and exploding forwards and strong hamstrings for stopping quickly and changing directions.
Beginners should progress like this:
- Single-handed deadlift
- Single leg deadlift
- Kettlebell swing
Failure to master the exercises in this order will only result in poor technique and mistakes being magnified as the exercises become more dynamic.
Regardless of your goals, you should work hard to make sure that a hip hinge based movement is added to your program.
Learn more: 9 Hip hinge exercises you need to know
Here’s an intermediate workout from my 12-week men’s kettlebell program
- 1A. Clean – 10 reps each side
- 1B. Push Ups – as many as possible
- REST 60 secs and repeat for 3 total sets
- 2A. Goblet Squat – 15 reps
- 2B. Suitcase Row – 10 reps each side
- REST 60 secs and repeat for 3 total sets
The clean is your hip hinge in the above workout but that can easily be replaced with a single-handed deadlift if you are not comfortable with the exercise.
This year I’ve made some changes to my nutrition that you may find interesting:
- Dry 2020 – I’m not a heavy drinker of alcohol but this year I’ve decided to take 12 months off all alcohol and see what changes I notice.
- Chicory – I didn’t regularly start drinking coffee until I was in my 30’s but recently I’ve discovered a slight addiction to it. So I’ve swapped out all coffee for organic chicory. Brand: Prewetts
- Intermittent Fasting – I’ve continued my 16:8 fasting into 2020 which involves having my last meal at around 6 pm and then nothing again until 10 am. One of the best new habits I’ve adopted.
- Super Porridge / Oatmeal – for breakfast Lucy often makes our super porridge by soaking sprouted oats overnight and then mixes it with almond milk, pumpkin, sunflower, flax seeds, bee pollen, berries, cinnamon, and homemade stem ginger. Brand: Rude Health organic sprouted
- Coconut Yoghurt – I’ve been off dairy for a few years now and so use coconut yoghurt as a dessert, with our super porridge, and in curries. Brand: Co Yo.
- Raw Cider Vinegar – drinks can get boring so I often mix a tablespoon of cider vinegar with sparkling water to keep things interesting. Brand: Eat Wholesome organic.
I’m always changing things up and swapping things out as I discover new and improved foods. What have you been experimenting with lately?
Learn more: 9 Most influential nutritional changes
Here are a few training tools I use frequently:
- Resistance Bands – I use resistance bands most days for warming up my shoulders, helping clients squat better, improving pistol squats, and for workouts on the road. Brand: Lifeline (orange & red)
- Grip Training – as you age your grip strength gets weaker and there is a direct correlation between weak grip and weak shoulders. Kettlebells are great for working grip strength but I also like to use something more specific. Brand: Captains of Crush
- Massage Stick – for working into the hamstring, quads, calves, and other more localised areas I use a massage stick. Brand: The Stick (marathon)
- Kettlebells – you only need 1 kettlebell to get started. Here’s my guide to buying kettlebells for both men and women.
Plenty more coming next week including all the details about the February 30 day kettlebell challenge.
See you next week.
P.S. Missed last weeks newsletter? Read it here
[I’ve included some links above that are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission will not affect the original price or the price you pay.]