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Athletic development specialists dedicated to the art and science of excellence in movement

Notes from StrongFirst Level II Kettlebell Certification

This post is waaaayyy overdue but I was going through some old notes from my Level II certification (led by former Master SFG Dave Whitley) and decided it was time to finally post these. As you can see, most of these are more big picture philosophy and less oriented toward the technical aspects of the lifts. 

1. We care about good form, right? So let’s try to define it……yet most of us don’t have a definition. 

2. Old definition of “good form” – biomechanically correct and aesthetically pleasing

3. Current definition – Physiologically appropriate for the individual and moves them in the direction of their goal

4. When you think you know something…you really don’t

5. Subjective definition of good form…Does it look “believable”?

6. Power swings to correct legs too straight in swing (geometry problem solved by changing the dynamics of the movement)

7. Better cue for “windshield wiper” in the getup is to “Open your hips”

8. Biggest compliment you can receive – “he/she made it look easy” (the unspoken part of that statement is “If he made that look easy, I wonder how strong he really is!!”)

9. Make it look easy. Practice by training mostly below 90% of your max (with the bulk occurring in the 50-80pct range)

10. Getup is the sun salutation of what we do (getup as loaded yoga…) – Many opportunities to introduce variation

11. Never underestimate the power of performing in front of a group

12. Being aware is superior to trying harder

13. Generating tension and trying harder are not the same thing

14. If you go for the hard start you get the easy finish…And if you go for the easy start, you get the hard finish  (=importance of solid setup)

15. “Your worth as a coach is not based on how many cues you can vomit at them”

15a. Use less words to say more

16. Clean is a swing that finishes in the rack

17. Most clean problems are swing problems

18. Is it a press problem…or a rack problem

19. How you carry the bells matters

20. Why do hands tear? Technique, conditioning of the hands (too much too soon), and environment (heat, humidity, etc)

21. Do it….then explain it

22. Elevated shoulders is a fear response. Address this mental component as part of technical correction 

23. Relaxation allows us to access mobility (not just joint and muscle centric approach to mobility)

24. Reframing the idea of group training – cancer patients and pro sports teams both have mostly group treatments (single nurse caring for multiple patients on cancer unit, number of players on sports team far outnumbers coaching staff)….If group is good enough for these populations, it should be good enough for your business….

25. But the individual is always more important than the program. 

26. Beauty of StrongFirst system is that you can have an entire group doing same but different….Clean and jerk, push press, press…all can be assigned to group in the same set

27. Consulting business – flat rate not per hour. Movies charge for the movie, not for you to rent space in movie theater