All posts in “free weights”

The Rock strength training with kettlebells

The Highest Paid Actors Use Kettlebells

Here’s a list of actors who make between  $10,000,000 to $100,000,000 per year, that salary directly dependent on their physique. Their strength training exercise tool of choice is the kettlebell.

Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson

Jessica Biel

Frank Miller (300)

Heidi Montag

Penelope Cruz

Katherine Heigl

Matthew McConaughey

Jennifer Aniston

Vanesa Hudgens

Angelina Jolie

Bob Harper (The Biggest Loser)

Sylvester Stallone

Jennifer Lopez

Kim Basinger

~Then you have the Special Forces, the Secret Service, and some of the world’s top athletes……go figure ~

To learn kettlebells from the ground up in RKC fashion from a Certified Instructor, check out Dan’s Kettlebell Club in Alameda, CA.  I’m fully equipt, with a great Studio, and have the largest set of kettlebells in the greater Oakland/Berkeley/Eastbay area.  Train unlimited for $200/mo.   


By Dan Piper, CPT, RKC, FMS,  Workout4Results.com

Strength Training at Dan’s Barbell and Kettlebell Club, Alameda, CA

bodybuilding routine vs kettlebell routine

Confessions From a Recovering Bodybuilder

Reblogged Confessions From a Recovering Bodybuilder

Hey Awesome Athletes! I’m re-blogging this article from Strongfirst.com Scott Iardella, Physio, whose training protocols I’ve studied and used, so please enjoy. Note the CK-FMS designation below, which combines Russian Kettlbell Training with FMS.  To look like Scott does, we’ll still need to bench press –  this is a type of usable strength that can not be ignored in sports such as Football, Disc Throwing, and Wrestling, among many others What one coach says is not the have all to end all – but it’s great to take in the opinions and experiences of people who are quite smart, and who dedicate their lives to improving your health.

Dan

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Article by Scott Iardella, MPT, CSCS, CISSN, SFGII, CK-FMS, USAW. Scott is an SFG Level II Instructor, former Orthopedic/Sports Medicine Physical Therapist.

This is a little embarrassing, but I admit I was an obsessed bodybuilder for about six years of my life.  My training was completely different about twenty years ago.  One of the key things I learned through all these years is that functional strength training and bodybuilding training are radically different.  Yes, the way I used to train was outstanding for hypertrophy, but not much else.  Let me explain exactly what I mean.

As a former competitive bodybuilder, bodybuilding was a very life changing and rewarding experience for me.  The six years I competed were an amazing time of what I thought was “hard core” training.  You know what, it was “hard core” training, just in a very different way.  At the peak of my bodybuilding career I would spend four hours in the gym, six days a week.  That’s right, 24 hours out of every week were dedicated to high volume lifting with my training partner who was, at the time, training for the Teenage Mr. America.  You can probably guess, we did a lot of sets, reps, and isolation exercises.

I can still remember an example of a chest workout we used to do twice a week:

*    Four sets of flat barbell bench

*    Four sets of incline barbell bench

*    Four sets of dumbbell flat bench

*    Four sets of incline dumbbell bench

*    Finish off with four sets of either a cable fly or dumbbell fly

What you may notice is that all the exercises were done while lying down on a bench.  This is not very functional, obviously.

After our chest training, we’d then proceed on to our back program, usually 20 to 24 sets, and then abs or calves to finish. Slightly crazy as that was 24 work sets, not including warmups.  Rep ranges were in the 8 to 12 range for everything.  You can see why the workouts were four hours in duration.  The word “overtraining” should be coming to mind here.  There were many problems with this type of training, but it served the purpose, at the time.  This was typical bodybuilding training.  This was not strength training.

I still train for muscular hypertrophy, but it’s totally different for me these days. I absolutely want to increase lean muscle mass as much as I possibly can (once a bodybuilder, always a bodybuilder), but the training protocols have completely transformed.  A major contributor to this transformation was the simple discovery of the kettlebell.  It was that tool that helped to change my entire training philosophy, as soon as I learned how to use it properly.

Instead of 24 hours a week, I’m down to four hours a week and usually less than that.  That’s four days a week of one-hour training sessions, where the actual training ranges from 30-45 minutes, with the other time being spent on joint mobility and technique work.  That’s an 83% reduction in my weekly training time.  I’ve also become a “technique fanatic” for the primary benefit of training with maximum safety, efficiency, and results.

If you remember one thing from this article, remember this.  Proper technique combined with smart programming equals optimal results, period.

For me, long gone are the days of hours of training, and double digit sets and reps.  Today, it comes down to just three simple modalities, for the most part.  The kettlebell, the barbell, and bodyweight applications.  It’s a training session that has five fundamental movements and usually includes such movements as a hinge, squat, push, pull, and a carry.  (Thanks Dan John!)

“Fundamental movement is fundamental.” ~Dan John

A typical training session today usually looks something like this:

(By the way, I like to use the term training session as opposed to workout.  Anyone can “work out.”  A “training session” means you are working to improve and build your skills.  Keep this in mind.)

*    Barbell Deadlift, two warmups then 3×5 (pull)

*    Double Kettlebell Military Press, 2×5 (push)

*    Barbell or Double Kettlebell Front Squat, 2-3×5 (squat)

*    Kettlebell Swing, 3×50 (hinge)

*    Kettlebell Turkish Get Up, 2-5 reps (plus one)

*    Racked Walk (or other loaded carry) for distance. (carry)

*    Done…

Take notice of the differences from my previous bodybuilding workouts.  All of these exercises are total body movements, nothing lying down or even seated.  All exercises are a total body integration with no isolation exercises.  This is how the body is designed to be used, as a system.

The big benefits?  Less time, total body integration, functional movement, and skill development, just to name a few.  All are major exercises that work the big muscle groups, stimulate the maximal hormonal effects, and have the greatest systemic benefits.  This is important.  We get stronger, we move better, we feel better, all with the added bonus of gaining muscular hypertrophy.

I change my protocols, rotate different periodization approaches, and sometimes perform more volume to match my training objectives.  But, my primary goals now are improving strength and skill mastery.  All the other goals come after that.  Training the way I used to for bodybuilding did one thing really well.  It was excellent for increasing muscular hypertrophy, but it lacked so many other things.

Now, in addition to increasing muscle mass, I have countless other benefits and I understand what it is to truly train for strength and performance. Pure strength training is king and all goals can be accomplished by being stronger. In my early years, I didn’t realize what I know today, that you must be strong first.


Are you ready to start getting stronger and fitter? Why not book your ONE WEEK FREE TRIAL NOW?

Strength Training at Dan’s Barbell and Kettlebell Club, Alameda, CA

strength training for seniors using bench press

Senior Strength Training

“Life’s requires strength.  By now, you know this.” 

Dan Piper, Certified Personal Trainer, HKC Kettlebell Instructor, Workout4Results.com

1/3 of my athletes are seniors.  They are spirited, extremely interesting, and our conversations range from thought provoking to the ridiculous.  My Senior clients tend to have greater desire, a greater  need for strength, and much better adherence than the average gym goer.  But what can a senior do in the gym?

What does senior strength training look like?

You might be surprised, but a senior strength training workout looks no different than mine or your grandaughter’s – really.  Yes, we may lighten the load, and talk more about the old days when a hamburger cost a nickle, or talk about what it was like being a gunner in WWII, or to actually watch Elvis Perform, but essentially the workouts are the same.  They perform olympic lifts, they box, they do abdominal work, and lots of mobility work.  I love letting Charlie sock me in the gut when we “spar”, or watching my younger senior perform a perfect back squat – and I mean it!

I must admit I like having them around for other reasons also – I need the age old wisdom around me.  We all do.

Here’s an article about a 91 year old weightlifting record holder, named Sy Perlis, that you’re sure to enjoy!  91 Year Old Champion


Are you ready to follow the example set by Sy Perlis? Then why not book your ONE WEEK FREE TRIAL NOW?

By Dan Piper, CPT, RKC, FMS,  Workout4Results.com

Strength Training at Dan’s Barbell and Kettlebell Club, Alameda, CA

why blog about a hoodie?

By Dan Piper, Certified Personal Trainer, FMS, HKC Workout4Results.com

I’m posting about this sweater because this is an American success story based in San Francisco, about a business that does things much differently than most.   Whether you operate a fitness business, a high-tech startup, or a corner store, there are tremendous lessons here for us all.   Here’s how American Giant is different, and why I like them. Continue Reading…

Practice Like You Play with Kettlebells

I haven’t got time to waste, have you?  That’s why we’re training with kettlebells.

As soon as an athlete of mine so much as lifts a kettlebell off the floor – they are engaging their core and working those abs in standing position.  After a 1/2 hour of kettlebell swings, presses, squats, windmills, and snatches,  their entire body from the muscles in your feet to their teeth (if that’s even possible) is SMOKED!!!

If I suggest that we now proceed to work abs, I’m likely to get a towel thrown in my face, because that person KNOWS that they are DONE.

Across the gym, someone else is poking along with their split routine, sitting down like they do at the office (why is this even allowed in places where exercise is performed?) working out one muscle group at a time. If they’re on leg day, my athlete is on their 3rd leg day of the week.  And if they have decided that they now have 10 minutes left to work abs, we’ve already  been hitting abs for  1/2 hour straight (someone please come mop the sweat from the floor around us!) as an iron core is required in all sports, and all activities that leave out the word “GYM”.

Like a soccer player, there’s no part of their body that goes unchallenged.  And there’s none of this “I didn’t get to work on my core as much as I wanted today, but definitely got a nice pump!”  Sorry!

They won’t be playing the “Gladiator” soundtrack when you walk into the office either (or you won’t in your own head), because you will be just be one more wiry, badass in a suit – with nothing to brag about.  Sorry to take all of that away.  So yes, all you big GYM RATS need a reality check; practice like you play when training with kettlebells, step into their room with me for 5 minutes, please.

 

Trained directly by Pavel, Karen Smith is the only female Master SFG in the world.   She will be my instructor for SFG I certification in Santa Cruz this November.

Continue Reading…