The training, philosophy and stories as told by Dan Cenidoza.
Kettlebells, Sledge hammers and Ropes
You swing every one of them. There is something about swinging things that makes for a very good workout. Nobody is focusing on the swinging itself though. What is it about a swinging movement, any of them, that makes it a great exercise? Let’s first look at a few different “swings” to see what’s going on here...
One kettlebell workout and you know the benefits of the kettlebell swing.
Does anything get you breathing faster? Yes, swinging heavier kettlebells. There is no better way to cardiovascular conditioning than a progressive kettlebell swing training.
Is it the quick hip extension that makes it such an effective exercise?
Or that it involves such a large amount of muscle?
Or is it the weight or number of repetitions?
Yes to all.
But swinging a sledgehammer doesn’t have a hip extension and that can be every bit as demanding to the cardio as a kettlebell swing. Same goes for battling ropes. Yet the swing remains, regardless if you are swinging kettlebells, sledgehammers or ropes. They are all completely different exercises with the only common thing being that you swing something heavy for reps.
It all comes down to weight lifting. Not weightlifting as a sport or something limited to a barbell, but the simple act of lifting a weight over and over again. It doesn’t matter what you lift, it’s the manner you lift it in that counts; the weight should be light enough to do it quickly (ala swing) and repeatedly, but heavy enough to challenge you.
A sustained swinging effort in a movement that utilizes the major muscles in the body.
Even running is a form of swinging as you swing your arms and legs yet we don’t consider running as a form of weight lifting. Or swinging for that matter. Yet running still involves lifting and swinging weight. The heavier the weight, or the faster the swing, the harder the exercise.
Maybe if we think in terms of “manipulating” a weight we can reframe our thoughts about lifting weights as a means of cardio and fatloss.
I went back and forth as to what to call this article; Swinging Stuff, Weight lifting for Cardio or Manipulating Heavy Objects. I decided on Kettlebells, Sledgehammers & Ropes because it sounded cooler but what it really comes down to is sustainable exercise. Sustainable as in lasting 30 minutes or more. Sustainable as in you can do it regularly. Sustainable as in you are making progress. Sustainable as in potential for improvement and transformation.
Again, it matters more HOW you do the exercise, and it is your goals that will determine that.