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Quick Swing Cheat Sheet for Newbies

dpluslane1

New member
So you decided to swing a kettlebell for the first time. Chances are, the next day or two were not very comfortable for you. Being sore is normal - especially if you aren't used to training your body as a unit. It's where you are most sore that can give you the most feedback. Here is a quick cheat sheet of what some of that soreness can mean. It's not at all all-encompassing but it's a good place to start. And remember, it's where you are MOST sore because a little soreness almost everywhere is normal at first:

Sore Quads - Make sure your knees aren't coming forward when you hinge. They will bend but the angle of your shin relative to the ground should not be changing. Use the analogy of sitting back and trying to reach a chair that is way too far behind you.

Sore Shoulder Girdle - Make sure you are loading up and driving the movement with your hips and not pulling with your arms. Towel swings will usually fix this.

Sore Low Back - Could be multiple issues. Make sure you are really hiking the bell back and driving the movement with your hips. Think about making the bottom of the bell face the back wall. Make sure you are standing up tall at the top and not leaning back to put excess stress on your low back. You should be perpendicular to the ceiling and floor. Also check to see if you are swinging right underneath your groin and not close to the ground on the backswing. *and here is an addition from some responses to this thread. Make sure you are using the Hardstyle lockout to propel the bell. Knee caps pulled up, hamstrings, glutes, and abs tight.

Sore Glutes and Hamstrings - Congratulations. You probably have a decent swing. Welcome to the Party.
 
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kcaldwell

New member
This is great, Delaine. Thanks for posting this. I know when I started, my back was pretty sore because I was leaning back at the lockout. Really tightening my abs and standing straight up got rid of that soreness pretty quickly.

One more thing that might be added is sore forearms. Maybe its just me, but when I first started with swings, my forearms would give out before anything else. Once I figured out I should be hooking the handle instead of crush-gripping the handle, that took a lot of stress off my forearms. Just a suggestion.
 

dpluslane1

New member
Maybe its just me, but when I first started with swings, my forearms would give out before anything else. Once I figured out I should be hooking the handle instead of crush-gripping the handle, that took a lot of stress off my forearms.

Good point! The hook can also be a lifesaver in snatch grip.
 

j.paul

New member
Thank you for your post. My hamstrings are usually a tad bit sore the day after high volume swings (20x 1min/1min) at least now I know its ok to be sore there. BTW knock on wood, I have never been sore anywhere else on my body. :)
 

Condorfious

New member
Usually my entire back is sore the day after...

I feel it in my glutes and hams but not nearly as much as I do in my back...
I guess I need to de-emphasize using my back?
 

AngusGT

New member
Excellent info. Thanks.

I guess I'm doing them right however I don't like my form. I don't feel like I'm getting down far enough or that I'm keeping my back straight enough. Although it could just be my belly making it look that way. I do practice FTW squats and Box squats all the time, so hopefully that'll help my form. I'll have to post up a video on YouTube for you guys to critique.
 

Robnath

New member
An excellent, informative post.

Is there any chance to expand on this for some of the other exercises?

Regards, Rob
 

jeff5

New member
My back feels the strain when I'm doing the swings, and for a bit after, but it generally goes away within an hour or two. This morning my back was a bit tight when I got up, but it's fine now. (I did a higher volume of swings last night)

I attribute this to working the muscle group rather than doing it wrong, as I don't feel injured, and am not in pain for multiple days or anything like that. But maybe I'm way off base. The thing with me is that, from a very young age, I would get a sore lower back when doing abs, standing alot, etc. (I still do)
 

AlbertSuckowRKC

New member
Sore Quads - Make sure your knees aren't coming forward when you hinge. They will bend but the angle of your shin relative to the ground should not be changing. Use the analogy of sitting back and trying to reach a chair that is way too far behind you.

After you corrected my lockout earlier this year, my quads actually were sore because I was using them to pull up the knees where I hadn't been before.
 

NonStop

New member
So you decided to swing a kettlebell for the first time. Chances are, the next day or two were not very comfortable for you. Being sore is normal - especially if you aren't used to training your body as a unit. It's where you are most sore that can give you the most feedback. Here is a quick cheat sheet of what some of that soreness can mean. It's not at all all-encompassing but it's a good place to start. And remember, it's where you are MOST sore because a little soreness almost everywhere is normal at first:

Sore Quads - Make sure your knees aren't coming forward when you hinge. They will bend but the angle of your shin relative to the ground should not be changing. Use the analogy of sitting back and trying to reach a chair that is way too far behind you.

Sore Shoulder Girdle - Make sure you are loading up and driving the movement with your hips and not pulling with your arms. Towel swings will usually fix this.

Sore Low Back - Could be multiple issues. Make sure you are really hiking the bell back and driving the movement with your hips. Think about making the bottom of the bell face the back wall. Make sure you are standing up tall at the top and not leaning back to put excess stress on your low back. You should be perpendicular to the ceiling and floor. Also check to see if you are swinging right underneath your groin and not close to the ground on the backswing. *and here is an addition from some responses to this thread. Make sure you are using the Hardstyle lockout to propel the bell. Knee caps pulled up, hamstrings, glutes, and abs tight.

Sore Glutes and Hamstrings - Congratulations. You probably have a decent swing. Welcome to the Party.

Yey, doing my swings right! Ditto to other posts, would be great for other exercises.
 

Ideal Paradigm

New member
So you decided to swing a kettlebell for the first time. Chances are, the next day or two were not very comfortable for you. Being sore is normal - especially if you aren't used to training your body as a unit. It's where you are most sore that can give you the most feedback. Here is a quick cheat sheet of what some of that soreness can mean. It's not at all all-encompassing but it's a good place to start. And remember, it's where you are MOST sore because a little soreness almost everywhere is normal at first:

Sore Quads - Make sure your knees aren't coming forward when you hinge. They will bend but the angle of your shin relative to the ground should not be changing. Use the analogy of sitting back and trying to reach a chair that is way too far behind you.

Sore Shoulder Girdle - Make sure you are loading up and driving the movement with your hips and not pulling with your arms. Towel swings will usually fix this.

Sore Low Back - Could be multiple issues. Make sure you are really hiking the bell back and driving the movement with your hips. Think about making the bottom of the bell face the back wall. Make sure you are standing up tall at the top and not leaning back to put excess stress on your low back. You should be perpendicular to the ceiling and floor. Also check to see if you are swinging right underneath your groin and not close to the ground on the backswing. *and here is an addition from some responses to this thread. Make sure you are using the Hardstyle lockout to propel the bell. Knee caps pulled up, hamstrings, glutes, and abs tight.

Sore Glutes and Hamstrings - Congratulations. You probably have a decent swing. Welcome to the Party.

I just added this to the FAQ, in addition to doing a small overhaul of the FAQ.

Please check FAQ to see if there's anything different that you might/might not like.

Thank you Delaine Ross, RKC II.
 

PA KETTLE

New member
SHIN ANGLE! That's what I've been looking for. I watched many techniques, but was focusing on "how much knee action" instead of shin angle. Thanks a bunch.
 
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