Monday, September 22, 2008

Cardio With Kettlebells

The other day, I did 200 continuous 1.5 pood (53lbs) snatches with the "Beep Test", switching hands every 10 reps for the first 60, and every 5 reps after that. About 20 minutes of continuous work. It's a good cardio workout, but unless wind is your major weakness, I'm not sure that this kind of training has a lot of application to girevoy sport or the "Secret Service Snatch Test ("SSST")".
Girevoy Sport, where the objective is to snatch a kettlebell as many times as possible in 10:00 with only one hand switch, a huge part of the game is the local muscular fatigue you experience in the shoulder and grip. With multiple switches, as I am doing here, most of the localized fatigue dissipates in the non-working arm. One arm is always getting a breather and is never required to work anywhere close to exhaustion.
For the SSST, the objective is similar to girevoy sport - 10:00 as many reps as possible, but multiple hand switches are allowed and you may set the bell down as often as long as you'd like as well. Pacing is the name of the game with the SSST and, quite frankly, the Beep Test protocol, designed for shuttle runs, just isn't fast enough for SSST preparation until about 14 minutes in or unless you are using a really heavy bell. You could easily remedy this by doing more repetitions per chime though.
In any case, it's a fun challenge and great general conditioning. Having the caller and chimes makes it easier to just let the mind go and focus on each repetition - almost hypnotic and it reminds me of all those years I spent staring at the bottom of a pool, swimming back and forth for miles. The beep test protocol I'm using, by the way, goes until 247 repetitions - I've done 220 with this, but usually put the bell down with gas still in the tank - towards the end my hands are pretty slick and it takes a lot of concentration not to lose the bell on a hand switch. Let me know what you think.


Alexander said...

Nice video. Thanks. I also liked the chimes tones, can imagine it's good for long repetetive sessions. Will try to find some something like that and try it out.

Boris said...

Thanks Alexander. I think there should be some on in the internet - they might not have the caller, but there should be some w. at least the beeps.

There are probably timer programs out there to do similar things as well.

Andy and Judy said...

I've been looking on the net for something like this, and having no luck. Any suggestions about search words, or site to look at?

Boris said...

Take a look for "beep test" and see if you can find any downloadable files. I'll see what I can find.