The forearm and the fist should be used as one solid piece, like a club with a knot on the end of it. The fist should be kept on a straight line with the forearm and there should be no bending of the wrist in any direction.” Ditto with the kettlebell lifts. A limp wrist bent back is a guarantee of weakness and injuries. There is a difference between the grip for the get-up and other slow lifts or “grinds”—and the grip for the clean and the quick lifts. The ballistics do not require you to crush the handle; you can even keep your hand open and wiggle the fingers. Just don’t let your wrist cave in. Pick your kettlebell up with two hands. Spear one hand through the handle while holding up the ball with the other. Push deeper. Wiggle your hand around to find a comfortable spot. Keep adjust- ing until the handle rests on the very heel of your palm, almost sliding down onto your forearm. Let go with the supporting hand and let the ball rest on the outside of your fore- arm. Wiggle your fingers some more to relieve the pressure on the fore- arm and to become “one with the kettlebell.” You should feel more weight on your forearm than on your palm. When the kettlebell is in motion don’t grip it, just hook the handle with your fingers. Pick up the kettlebell with two hands, then let go with one. 1 2
T HE RKC R ITE OF P ASSAGE 91 Clean Mastery Step #2: the Rack Senior RKC Rob Lawrence has dramatically accelerated our students’ clean mastery by propos- ing to study the clean in reverse: the rack, the drop, the clean proper. If your weightlifting is not up to snuff, “the rack” refers to holding a weight on your chest. Cheat curl a kettlebell with two hands. Adjust your grip and let go with the assisting hand. Move around to find the sweet spot where you become “one with the kettlebell.” A girevik’s posture is the opposite of a strutting bodybuilder’s. The shoulders are stretched down, the chest is not puffed out, the shoulder blades are spread out like a fighter’s, the elbows are tightly pressed against the body (no imaginary lats, Comrade!), and the hips are slightly pushed forward. Ori Hofmekler, Israeli spec ops vet and the author of The Warrior Diet , calls this alignment “the warrior posture.” The rack.
E NTER T HE K ETTLEBELL ! 92 Do not support the kettlebell by shrugging your shoulder or pushing up with your arm. Relax your shoulder girdle and let the weight of the kettlebell pass directly to your rib cage, stomach, and hips. Your elbow must go as low as possible. It is important to keep some ten- sion in your glutes—pinch a coin— to protect your back. Also keep some braced tension in your abs. Unlike a dumbbell, a kettlebell must be racked close to your cen- terline. Imagine that you are using your elbow to protect your liver or spleen from a punch. Press your arm against your ribs. An arm “disconnected” from the body punishes the shoulder.
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- Spring '19
- Kettlebell, kettlebells