Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Michael Castrogiovanni: Athleticism in Taking Kettlebells out of the Box

Beautiful Strength. Kettlebells are heavy iron balls with handles. They are great for strength and conditioning work. They look like this:

Indeed, some of us have spent money to learn how to teach people how to use these things safely. Mainly by learning how to swing them between our legs up to above our heads in an arc. A simple move, but folks who watch this and do not know the technique, that simple gesture is pretty freaky. But let's say you've learned the techniques and you're out there practicing kb's - Michael Castrogiovani, an amazingly fit guy, RKC Team Lead, and creative athlete, makes the rather poignant observation is that all the movement happens in that same body zone. Not ot put to fine a point on it: between the legs. And so Michael asks, what happens if we move outside that box?

Athleticism & Strength. There was an interesting theme of discussion at a recent kettlebell certification course, the RKC II - it was athleticism. Athleticism had been ascribed to kettlebell practice, and so the question came up, ok what's athleticism. Fluid movement. Effortless looking movement - making movement look beautiful and easy.

The above video of Castrogiovanni seems a pretty cool example of athleticism, with kettlebells as the tool to let it be demonstrated. Beautiful, isn't it?

Delight. Awhile ago i wrote a post about the rarity of delight especially in one's practice. The live demo that Michael put on with with fellow RKC TL Jeremy Layport was that.

If you get a chance to work with Michael or to see him juggle or kb toss, you'll be delighted, surprised and no doubt inspired by the athleticism. A new way to think about heavy objects moving through space.

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Update - Michael has agreed to an interview for b2d on his work with tossing kb's, so will look forward to that in the near future.


Blair said...

How funny, I've been following your blog for quite some time now. Mike was just in my studio today and we were discussing about the talk that he gave this past weekend. We've only begun to scratch the surface. The best is yet to come.(By the way, I'm the third guy in the video) Thanks for the awesome content. www.sportfitproformance.com

mc said...

Blair, thank you so much for dropping by, 3rd guy. Awesome stuff, and i'm guessing it feels pretty good too?

thanks for posting.


L. Wu said...

I still want to learn how to do coronal/frontal plane "stone lock" swings:




This move isn't even in Cotter's encyclopedia of KB lifting book/DVD combo..


Darryl Lardizabal said...

Yeah Kettlebell Juggling is interesting to say the least, something I'll start doing on variety days, although I'm too focused on the advanced bodyweight moves to give it as good a shot as I want. Only know some basic KB juggles, but that's it. Awesome to see someone who excels in it.


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