There is little regard for high level timing and coordination, or any advanced work with the central nervous system (quick changes of direction) that's required of most athletes. Usually, muscle isolation (artificial) is the goal, versus muscle integration (natural). The major muscles get big and strong, sometimes too strong for the smaller muscles and connective tissue (tendons and ligaments). Muscle, tendon, and ligament tears are common, and considered part of the process, but shouldn't be. Achy shoulders, knees, and backs are typical, especially with the weekend warriors, or those who never really took the time to learn to do things right.
Remember, you're only as strong as your weakest link.
There is a true place for raw strength training and body building, and we incorporate many traditional resistance movements in our Cross Performance Workouts, but always with major stress on proper movement execution, whether it be jerking or squatting.
At KBNY our ballistic, high repetition approach to ketttlebells builds ridiculous tendon and ligament strength and is true body building, not just major muscle development. I theorize that due to the high rep schemes, blood is able to saturate these areas and allow an acclimation process (density) to occur over time. Tendons and ligaments do not respond as fast as muscle, and a very big reason for starting light, but eventually the lifter is rewarded with more flexibility, strong joints, and protection from injury (think wrist, elbow, shoulder, neck, back, knees, ankles).
There are a few other things unique to kettlebells you should consider. First, when doing a High Intensity Kettlebell Set, you get to train strength, cardio, flexibility, power, speed, and timing, ALL at in one set. Next, with good technique there should be no spike in heart rate or blood pressure because you never bear down or hold your breath to complete a rep. It's a fluid breathing pattern, much like running. Your heart rate will gradually increase or hold steady, but not spike. Much healthier. Lastly, you only need to make a small investment in time, money, and space (a 4 x 6 mat should suffice).
What are you waiting for? Kettlebells and Cross Performance training are more than just a trend. Check us out online at KBgym.com, We offer gym membership for local residents, training videos, e-Book, an ACE approved kettlebell trainer certification, and much more.
article by Michael Stefano