Same Path Traveled Different Journey Part 6: #whyIswing

As a trainer and coach, I always want to know my clients’ why, the what for, . . . the deeper reason why they are working with me. At first, it can be as simple if dropping some weight or fitting into a pair of jeans, but I usually find there are deeper reasons why behind their goals, even through their goals are GOOD!

It wasn’t till Strength Matters posted the question “why do you swing” wanting to know the reason behind many people’s swing. Right away I thought, I swing to help with my sport. I posted this picture at the beginning of the water ski season, now with it is the end of the season I find I am asking myself do I have a deeper reason behind my swing then just for off-season training? If I am asking my clients to discover their “why” or “what for” I thought I would share my reasons.

whyiswing

I swing for my mom; she has been the one who has always believed in my dreams and my wild hippie-gypsy spirit. Without her I would not be the woman I am today! She has taught me there is a powerful source living within me! It is through the power of believing I will be able to unleash this source.  This power has lead me to have a passion for exercise, health, movement, nutrition etc!  But it is only a result of my mother leading me to discover my passions and most importantly this power that is bigger than life.  She has taught me how trusting and having faith in this power leads us to your passions and the process of discovering your true strength. She has taught me so much about power strength, and living life with passion,  but most importantly she has taught me to stand for my beliefs and for those who I love.

It is now my turn to demonstrate to her all she has given to me! And this is the reason I swing for my mom.

A year ago, my mother went into brain surgery to remove a tumor.  Leading up this event was her neck and back pain.  After two different MRIs, it was confirmed she had a herniated disk at C6- C7. For those who may be wondering what do those letters mean if you were to bend your head down toward your chest it is the main vertebra you feel at the base of her neck.

To the doctors and my parents surprise there a tumor trying to make itself a home in my mother’s brain.  This was a blessing in disguised!  The surgery was an easy success! Yes it was a huge success, but that was the easy part.  Recovery has been a different story.  My mom was not only recovery from a major surgery but she was and is still trying to heal her neck.  She decided one surgery was enough and she was going to heal her neck with the holistic approach.  Because of where the herniated disk is located it has caused her shoulder and hand tremendous pain.  She continues to fight this through chiropractor, massage therapy, acupuncture, and pulse therapy.

The cost of the surgery and the fact she has maxed out her insurance coverage, I am asking for your donation to help my mother fight this battle of regaining her health without another surgery.

Knowing she gave me this amazing gift of life, I cherish this gift through my health.

I will be doing a kettlebell swing for every dollar donated to help my mother to be the best she can be pain free! Clink here to see how you can be apart of this! https://www.gofundme.com/iswingformamabitz

Most importantly, I am committed not just my health and my mother’s but to your life’s health. I swing for you to know life is amazing wonderful life and we are to enjoy this gift through this complex amazing bodies of ours.

I SWING for my MOM

#iswingformamabitz

My mom is my why S- She is my

Passionate, strong, W-warrior

Who continues to I- inspires me to live life to the fullest

And lets N-nothing get in the way of

The G-Greatness she continues to see in me.

Core Strength

This format may not fit with everyone’s schedule, the goal of this template is simply to give you an idea of what type of off-season training should look like. As the water ski season come closer, decrease the strength days to 2x a week and increase the interval training to 2x week with one steady state cardio.

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Strength:Lower Body Push

 

Upper Body Pull

Intervals:Rower Sprints 500 meters 3xBattle Ropes Strength:Lower Body Pull

Upper Body Push

Steady State Cardio:Bike RideRun

 

Full Body Strength:Kettlebell Swing

 

Leave Saturday or Sunday do to something active that you enjoy like yoga or long walks. Let these be your active recovery days, continue to move.

 

 

I love questions! Please leave your questions below.

For now enjoy these core exercises

Core is more than just our abs, it shoulders and hips as well. Here are two core exercises that target all aspects of our true core.

Plank Shoulder Taps

  • Elbows are stacked under the shoulders. Spine is a neutral position.
  • To make sure hips are in the correct position think if you had a tail you are the “shameful dog” hiding your tail. So you are tucking your hips under turning on your pelvic floor.
  • Once in the correct position, shifting all your weight to one arm as you lift the opposite arm tapping the shoulder.

 

Benefits: Shoulder stabilization, deep core activation, and hip stabilizers.

 

Pillar Crunch

  • Placing the Elastic Band around the middle of your feet extend one leg driving through the heel. With the opposite leg, pull your knee toward your shoulders.
  • As you lift the shoulders off the ground think of lifting your chest toward the sky.

Benefits: Turns on your glutes of the extended leg and works your hip flexor correctly in conjunction to your abs.

Power and Strength

While listening the Coach Glass’s Podcast (episode #43 Season Training Pt1) he posed a question “What are the power/strength requirements of your sport?” As he started to go into details of the importance of understanding this, I asked myself this question toward water skiing.  With water skiing being a very skilled sport I wondered, “Can I really answer this question to help develop the right off season training without getting out on the water?”  So I reached out to the water ski community to ask their thoughts with this question on Facebook.  Here are the main things people replied:

Core

Leg strength

Grip

Mental Awareness

Tension and Relaxation

Timing

Position

I have been told water skiing is similar to golf simply because it is such a mental sport.  With golf and water skiing being both more of a mental sports, I have found there are many other similarities. Even though I do not play golf as a movement coach I can see the similar movement patterns between both sports which are rotation and power.

Coach Jason Glass is one of the world’s top Golf Strength & Conditioning Specialist, and he uses the kettlebell swing for many of his golfer’s exercise programing.   Both golf and water ski are very skilled and technical sports demanding a lot of mental strength while at the same time can be very taxing physically (at least water skiing sorry golfers). Learning the kettlebell swing is a very technical skilled and strength exercise.  The basic movement of the kettlebell swing requires the same aspects of water skiing.

It is all about  improving your mental awareness, producing the right body position and finding the correct timing for tension and relaxation.

When I was first learning the proper way to swing a kettlebell, all three aspects I had to own.  The skill has to be learned in order to build strength from the swing. Training a skilled exercise like the Kettlebell swing can only produced a larger mental awareness to be able to own the skill of any sport. If we can’t learn how to develop mental awareness on land how are we suppose to develop this on water?

As I learned the (and still learn) the correct position to swing, I started to see and feel how position is key to produce the power from a swing.  Similar to water skiing, if not in the right position we will not be able to generate the power from the boat through our body to the ski (still learning the correct position for water skiing as well).  While at the same time the position of the swing requires different movement (bottom of the swing and top of the swing) and timing starts to take a major aspect to the skill.

Like April Coble has said water skiing is like a dance, it is rhythmic. Part the swing and water skiing is understanding the timing. When is the perfect time is to create the tension and relaxation?  How to manage both is key.  Whitney McClintock says “You don’t have to be the strongest person, you just need to have the right power at the right hand gate ball…” I enjoy the kettlebell swing simply because it forces me to create the right tension at the right time.  When you don’t the kettlebell is out of control doing it’s own dance.

From my experience when creating to much tension at the wrong time while water skiing, I have find myself in the water verses on top of the water.  I hope one day to be able to learn from Whitney how to create the right power at the right time.

For now I will continue to practice my swing this winter and listen to Coach Glass for more tips.  As Coach Glass would say Dream Big and Over Deliver and as I like to say live with passion!

 

Snatch test 16kg 100 in 5:22 http://www.coachseye.com/986J
Ist Snatch test 16kg 100 in 5:22 July 2013
http://www.coachseye.com/986J

There are many physical benefits from the Kettlebell Swing

Core Strength

Leg power and strength

Grip Strength and endurance

See my previous post Kettlebell Quickie for more benefits of the Kettlebell Swing!