Hello everyone.  I hope once again you are maintaining balance with your mind, body and soul with your life.  That you are working out smart and doing things that help you to be a better person.

September was another big step for Nikki and myself.  We decided to take our careers a step further by signing up for RKC Level II in April of 2012 in Minnesota.  We are going to be talking a lot in the next 8 months about the journey, but today I wanted to talk about how we are going to get started.

I am taking a piece of Alwyn Cosgrove’s advice and mapping out our journey.  This doesn’t mean that there will be road blocks along the way, but we are going to set a map to help us reach our goals of RKC LEVEL II.

I.  Determine the Goal –  Figure out your destination.

A.  Attend & Pass RKC Level II

1.  Strict Press (1/2 bodyweight for myself and 1/4 bodyweight for Nikki)

2.  Pistol (Single Leg Squat)

3.  Pull Up (with 24kg at foot for me, Nikki strict pull up)

4.  Bent Press

5.  Clean And Jerk

6.  Push Press & Viking Push Press

7.  Windmill

B.  Maintain and Pass all Level I Skills on 1st day of Level II

1.  Swing

2.  Turkish Get Up

3.  Squat

4.  Clean

5.  Press

6.  Snatch (maintain snatch test numbers 100 in 5 min)

II.  Determine a starting point – Where does your journey begin.

The first thing google maps will ask you when you ask for directions is where do you want to go and ALSO where you are starting your journey from.  I feel a lot of individuals miss the starting point when determining a proper training program.  This is why some goals are not achieved.  There are so many factors to take into consideration.

Some points to consider:

A.  Ailments/Injuries/Issues

1.  Right now I am injury free but I need to keep in mind that I have a neck and back that likes to get pissy when I overtrain.  Need to keep this in c0nsideration on a daily basis during this journey and back off if needed.

2.  I work with a massage therapist and a chiropractor who will help me with regular visits (monthly) along the way to help prevent any issues from arising.

B.  Functional Movement Screen

1.  Right now my FMS is above 14.  The only asymmetries I need to keep into consideration is my shoulder mobility and my active straight leg raise.  I need to make sure I keep symmetry with these two scores and continue to reassess SM and ASLR daily.  I need to make sure I get an FMS every 5 weeks.

C.  Current Strength

Of all the Level II exercises, I list them by which is hardest for me to accomplish in order.  From most challenging to least challenging goes like this: Press, Pullup, Pistol, Bent Press, Clean and Jerk, Windmill, Viking Push Press, and Push Press.

1.  Best I have ever pressed is a 36kg and have done 32kg for reps.  This is my starting point.

2.  Pullup I have currently accomplished with 10kg on my foot.

3.  Pistol I can do with a 14kg on my L, on my R I can do one time but get a pretty good cramp in my L quad (some type of compensation going on here)

4.  Bent Press is challenging for me due to the sheer technical side of the press, will need some expert advice on this.  (Spoke with Master RKC, David Whitley who is one of the best at the bent press.  He was kind enough to provide me some important pointers on the bent press.  He even told me is will provide huge gains in my strict press as well.  Here is a video by David Whitley on the Bent Press)

Video of my bent press practice

5.  Clean and Jerk is getting better now that I am not dealing with any neck or thoracic mobility issues.  The heavier I go the harder it gets.  Pretty pleased with up to 32kg as of now.

6.  Feel pretty good about the windmill (and how it can help me to a better bent press) as well as the push press and viking push press.  I don’t want to get cocky and forget about these movements, but will address them weekly to maintain.

7.  Just recertified in San Diego on all Level I skills so I just want to maintain these skills and make them as crisp and sharp as I can.  Want to maintain my snatch test numbers as well.

III.  Determine how long the journey will take – time to train

A.  Date of Level II – April 27th – 29th

B.  Weeks to train = 34 overall

C.  Amount of workouts per week (our goal is to try and get 4-5 workouts in per week).  5 workouts per week at 34 weeks is about 170 workouts.  We do want to be realistic here as we have trips planned and will miss some workouts.  So we are going to try for a goal of 150 workouts before level II.

There you have it.  Nikki and I will post updates as we come along in our training.  I am planning on doing a lot of sets of singles to achieve what I am looking for and make modifications as needed.  The hard part will be making sure I don’t progress too quickly and also to take off weeks.

Please feel free to comment back on how you have mapped out your journey for RKC Level I or II Or for any of your health and fitness goals.  Would love some feedback.

Its that time of year again, so we thought we would re-publish our favorite fall dessert/snack recipe.

#1 Pumpkin Pie Bars

These are the best bars around!  A clear favorite of ours!

From Gourmet Nutrition
(Servings 16)

Base
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup brown sugar (organic or 1/4 splenda brown Sugar)
1/2 cup cold Butter (can use 1/2 cup applesauce)

Filling
2 cups low fat/skim milk
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1 can of pumpkin puree (2 cups, NOT pumpkin filling!)
5 scoops (125g) of vanilla protein powder
3 whole omega 3 eggs
Splenda to taste

1. Preheat oven to 505 degrees F(190 degrees C).

2. Stir the flour, oats, brown sugar in a mixing bowl.  Add butter (or applesauce) and mix with hands thoroughly until mixture is a breadcrumb like texture.  Transfer ingredients to a 9×13 inch baking pan sprayed with cooking spray.  Press down on mixture until it covers the bottom of the pan completely.  Bake for 12 minutes

3. In the meantime, bring milk to a boil with the cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.  As soon as it boils, transfer to a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the pumpkin first and then the protein powder and eggs.  If necessary, sweeten mixture to taste with Splenda.

4. Once the base has finished baking, remove from the oven and pour the pumpkin filling on top.  Place back in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until pumpkin filling has set.

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 25 mins

Amount Per Serving (with butter)- Calories: 160/ Total Fat: 4.8g / Total Carbs: 17g / Dietary Fiber:1.7g / Protein 11.5g

Recipe from Gourmet Nutrition

Hello everyone.  I wish all of you well in your quest to become better individuals by healthy mind, body and soul.

Sorry it has been so long since I have posted.  You see, I don’t just blog all the time to be blogging.  I want my blog posts to have some meaning.  So when I am inspired to blog for any specific reason, then and only then do I get the word out to the masses.

Now to the good stuff.  So many of you out there feel that you HAVE to do cardio training to lose fat.  In all actuality this is not always necessarily true.  Many of you are missing out on the anaerobic and metabolic effects of resistance training and high intensity training.  I feel that part of this may be due to the fact that we (meaning Americans) LOVE to see the “calories burned” at the end of our workout.  Hence the love of getting on the treadmill or hooking ourselves up to a heart rate monitor.  BUT you are only taking in the “aerobic” measures towards caloric expenditure.  You are missing on a few other more important variables when determining what exercise means give you the most bang for your buck when working into a fat loss exercise program.

I want to thank Alwyn Cosgrove for bringing this study to my attention.  Alwyn is a fat loss EXPERT and has been doing it for quite some time now.  He has kept EVERY workout he has had his members perform and is up to date on ALL the research on fat loss.  So lets just say when Alwyn speaks, we (Nikki and I) listen.

A study in 2005 titled: “Misconceptions about aerobic and anaerobic energy expenditure” by Scott, CB and was published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.  Here they performed a study which compared 3.5 minutes of aerobic exercise versus 3 x 15 second wind sprints.

When you look at the first set of data which only recorded the calories burned using the aerobic measure they came out to:

Aerobic exercise = 36 calories burned

Sprints = 4 calories burned

This is where most people stop the argument.  “SEE!”  “Steady state aerobic is better than sprinting or high intensity cause it burns more calories!”  Just a second my friend.

The next measurement they took was EPOC (Exercise Post Oxygen Consumpton).  Wikipedia defines EPOC as:

(EPOC, informally called afterburn) is a measurably increased rate of oxygen intake following strenuous activity intended to erase the body’s “oxygen debt.” In historical context the term “oxygen debt” was popularized to explain or perhaps attempt to quantify anaerobic energy expenditure, particularly as regards lactic acid/lactate metabolism; in fact, the term “oxygen debt” is still widely used to this day. Direct and indirect calorimeter experiments have, however, definitively disproven any association of lactate metabolism as causal to an elevated oxygen uptake.[1]

In recovery, oxygen (EPOC) is used in the processes that restore the body to a resting state and adapt it to the exercise just performed. These include: hormone balancing, replenishment of fuel stores, cellular repair, innervation and anabolism.

EPOC is accompanied by an elevated consumption of fuel. In response to exercise, fat stores are broken down and free fatty acids (FFA) are released into the blood. In recovery, the direct oxidation of free fatty acids as fuel and the energy consuming re-conversion of FFA’s back into fat stores both take place.[2][3][4]
When they now measured the total calories burned including EPOC and Aerobic it came to the following total:

Steady State Aerobic exercise = 36 calories burned

Sprints (mostly anaerobic) = 39 calories burned

That is a pretty big jump by the 15 second sprints in just the EPOC alone and by checking out the above definition, its pretty nice to see that the fat stores are broken down during EPOC.

Lastly they decided to check calories burned using an Anaerobic Measure.  When all was said and done with aerobic, EPOC, and anaerobic measures were calculated.  Here is the final score:

Steady State Aerobic exercise = 39 calories burned

Sprints (mostly anaerobic) = 65 calories burned

Now do you see why we push so much for high intensity cardio and anaerobic works like kettlebell swings and strength training?  Its the WHOLE affect that creates the type of response that you want when trying to lose fat.

I would love to see a study that promotes strength training,  circuit training, kettlebell swings and other types of anaerobic exercise to put up against the treadmill, stair stepper and elliptical steady state exercise.

Dragon Door/RKC sponsors legendary MMA fighter, Fedor Emelianenko in upcoming battle against Dan Henderson, on Showtime

Dragon Door, the originator of the modern kettlebell movement and the world’s premier site for Kettlebells, strength conditioning and advanced fitness resources, is proud to announce its sponsorship of legendary fighter Fedor Emelianenko in his upcoming battle against Dan Henderson on July 30th at the Sears Center in Hoffman Estates, IL.

The fight will be broadcast at 10:00 EST on Showtime:

Shrouded in mystique in the world of Mixed Martial Arts, many aficionados have hailed Fedor as the greatest to ever do it, the Muhammad Ali of his sport. He remains one of the most fearsome and talented heavyweights in the world — and practically a national hero in Russia. The Fedor-Henderson fight is being heavily advertised and promoted in the homeland and some fans are calling it ‘Fedor’s Second Coming’.

Dragon Door launched its RKC kettlebell training system in 2001, sparking a worldwide revolution in effective strength and conditioning for elite athletes, martial artists, military and all those seeking a supreme level of functional fitness.

Dragon Door’s RKC programs offer a wealth of kettlebell information for generating superior strength and power — including books, seminars, training certification programs, equipment and DVDs. Many of the resources are considered modern classics, including Enter the Kettlebell: Strength Secret of the Soviet Supermen written by former Soviet Special Forces physical training instructor Pavel Tsatsouline.

American hardmen of all stripes were quick to recognize what their Russian counterparts had long known — nothing beats the kettlebell, when you’re looking for a single tool to dramatically impact your strength and conditioning.

“This is an ideal fit for our team,” writes John Du Cane, Founder and CEO of Dragon Door . “A great believer himself in kettlebells, Fedor embodies strength and power, and that’s what our company has been all about for the past 20 years — no gimmicks or fads, only hard work and training that builds resilience, strength and power.”

Look for Dragon Door’s RKC double-eagle logo displayed on Fedor’s shorts on fight night!

As originator with Pavel Tsatsouline of the modern kettlebell movement, Du Cane has spent decades building the world’s most informed and proficient community of kettlebell instructors, now in 43 countries and every U.S. state.

Dragon Door/RKC offers Certification Workshops the globe — from Budapest to San Diego to Philadelphia, to Korea to Belfast — providing the highest quality kettlebell instructor program available. Pavel’s Russian Kettlebell Challenge Certification Workshop gives professionals a crash course in Advanced Strength Skills, ignites new business opportunities, and propels attendees into the front ranks of physical excellence. An enthusiastic following of leading fitness and athletic authorities, trainers, doctors and therapists around the world have supported and attended their workshops since 2001.

Hope everyone is doing well, sticking with their guns and progressing towards their goals and most importantly, training smart.  Here is my favorite shake recipe going on right now.

Peanut Butter Cookie Shake (makes 2-4 servings)

  • 8 ounces of milk or almond milk
  • 8 ounces of cold water
  • 4 scoops of Vi-Shape Protein Mix
  • 4 Teaspoons of PB2 (you can use organic peanut butter if you choose)
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 4-8 ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese

Blend and enjoy.  The PB2 is a powdered form of peanut butter that just makes it way easier to make shakes with peanut butter (you can get it online or at your local grocery store).  I have used regular peanut butter in the past but it tends to stick to the blender half the time.  The secret ingredient in my mind is the cinnamon.  It really gives the shake that cookie taste that I love so much.  The cottage cheese sounds weird at first but it gives the shake an ice cream consistency to it.

Hope everyone is doing well out there and training hard and more importantly training smart.

After the past two weeks of speaking to individuals about their health and fitness goals for changing their lives I am inspired to write a blog on the subject.

First I need to provide a warning for you that this blog post will not be pretty.  You are going to see a little bit of my dark side.  Yes I have an alter ego (some of my clients have named him “Mac”) and it is about time that my alter ego come out and provide some knowledge.  I am not going to be an A$$hole, I am just going to be very blunt and provide all of you a little reality check.  Its not meant to hurt anyone’s feelings but to get you to achieving your goals.

Being a fitness/sports medicine professional since 1996 I have met a lot of individuals.  Some are inspiring with their story about how they have overcome adversity and made a positive change in their life.  But, the majority of the people I have met only have excuses.  Excuses for why they live the life they live, for their troubles, for their issues, blaming others for the problems they are faced with today, or baggage that is keeping them from living a happy life.

Listen, I am not better than anyone else.  I used to be Captain Excuse, I would blame my past for my issues with being able to deal with people.  I still catch myself today making excuses for many things, but I am aware of it and trying to stop it.

Here is the big problem.  If we are so busy making excuses, we are never working on SOLUTIONS to our adversity. Here is some of the excuses that I have heard recently and here is what they are really saying.

  • “The reason why my knee buckles when I exercise is because the flooring is bad or I have crappy shoes, or its just the way I move.”
    • I have knee issues but I don’t want to take time away from my workout to correct it.  So I am risking ruining my knees even more just so I can workout harder
  • “I used to workout ALL the time and was so happy with my body, until I had someone close to me pass away.  Ever since then I haven’t had the energy to workout and eat right.”
    • I was on track and then off track and now I just don’t have the energy to go through what I went through before to achieve the results I need.
      • This is a tough one.  I am not saying that you cannot mourn.  All I am saying is that you should mourn, but there has to be a time where you pick yourself up off of the floor and put the pieces back together.
  • “The reason I eat crap and don’t workout is because I don’t have the money.”
    • I am too lazy to think of a SOLUTION on how to budget properly to afford a proper fitness program and nutrition strategy.  I would much rather use my money (that I state that I don’t have) eating out and going to the bar.
  • “I would love to join a fitness facility or a fitness program, but I need to get in better shape to handle the intensity of the program.”
    • I am scared out of my mind about showing up to a fitness class and looking like a fool.  I don’t want others to see me make mistakes and fail.  I don’t want to look like an idiot in front of others.
      • This is another tough one.  But understand that everyone is in your shoes and has the same doubts and worries as you.  Ask any of our members, they were in the same situation as you during the first week of their program.  I was as well when I started my first kettlebell class!  But you make mistakes and learn from them, you struggle and sweat and accomplish and you do it with others who are there to help you along and you can help them too.  The difference between our members and you is that they decided they were tired of living the life that they were and took the first step.

So as painful as this blog may have been for you to read.  Take a few days and think about it.  Are you making Excuses?  Or are you now going to start thinking of SOLUTIONS to your problems.  I know that it has made my life much better when I stopped looking for an excuse and began thinking of solutions.

If you ever need help finding a solution, there are thousands of well trained individuals out there to help you find those solutions.  Never give up, always be thinking of a solution and your mind will find the answer.

Hello everyone!  Hope everyone had a fantastic Holiday Weekend and celebrated their Independence.

Here is SG Human Performance’s Protein Shake Recipe of the Week and in honor of the 4th of July whats more American than Apple Pie?  So we went with the Apple Pie Shake.

Apple Pie Shake

  • 2 scoops Vi-Shape Shake Mix
  • 1 small apple (seeded) or 1/4 cup Applesauce (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 8-10 ounces of Non-Fat Milk, Soy, or Almond Milk
  • A few ice cubes
  • Blend and enjoy

Sometimes we like to add come cottage cheese (1/4 cup) to up the protein content in the shake and it seems to provide a little more of a milkshake consistency.  The amount of ice depends on how thick you want the shake as well.  Tastes so much like apple pie except for the guilt!

IF you are interested in learning more recipes you can go to sghumanperformance.myvi.net and fill out a contact form.  Or just start the challenge and get started on your way to the new you.

If you are interested in receiving a free fitness consultation you can contact us by clicking on the link below.

Train hard and train smart,

Mark Snow

You have had enough.  You are tired of looking at what you see in the mirror everyday.  You want to lose fat and you want the body that you have always dreamed of.  You are now even more determined to achieve your fitness goals.  You will make it happen this time even after failed attempts.  This time is different.

BUT, Before you go out and buy the program, before you buy the DVD’s that are all the rage, before you make the financial investment into the equipment, gym membership, personal training sessions, bootcamp classes, and/or supplements you need to do one simple thing.

That is ASSESS YOUR FOUNDATION.  Any house that has been built to last the test of time has a solid foundation.  So why not do that with your body as well?  If your body does not have a solid foundation (as Gray Cook says) no matter what type of fitness you put on top of it, you are putting fitness on top of dysfunction.  This is not the correct way to start to achieve your goals.  In fact, it may be the reason that you are not achieving your goals.

Assess your foundation before you "Bring It"

What type of FOUNDATION am I speaking about?  Your MOVEMENT FOUNDATION which can also be described as your quality of movement.

PROBLEMS THAT ARISE FROM STARTING A FITNESS PROGRAM ON A POOR MOVEMENT FOUNDATION

  1. Poor Metabolism = Moving poorly restricts your metabolism.  You are not getting the most out of your body when you exercise and also as you go about your everyday activities.
  2. Injury = Would you drive a sports car at 100 mph when the car’s alignment is all out of whack?  It’s not a matter of IF but WHEN that car will break down.  And if you are driving that car at a very fast speed not only will the car break down sooner but bad things can occur very quickly!  The same goes for someone exercising with a poor movement foundation.
  3. Efficiency = Think of it this way.  If you move poorly or less than optimal, when you perform exercises you are not getting the most out of your body.  The less that you get out of your body then you are restricting your workouts and not getting the calorie burn you would optimally love.  The better you move = THE MORE YOU BURN!

Before you go "INSANE", make sure you understand how well your body moves.

So how do you assess your Movement Foundation?  You have a few choices.

  1. You go get a Functional Movement Screen from a certified professional.  This is the cream of the crop on movement quality.  They can assess your foundation and provide you with exercises to make your foundation strong.  Once you achieve a proper score with no imbalances then you are free to workout any way you wish, just keep rechecking your movement after finishing or beginning a program.
  2. You can perform an at home SELF MOVEMENT SCREEN.  The screen is easy to set up and perform without having to purchase any equipment (all you really need is a broomstick, tape of some kind, and a doorway).  All the instructions are below in the video provided.

Here at SG Human Performance we understand the importance of having a solid Movement Foundation and how providing you with the FMS screen and exercises to help to build this foundation this will ultimately help you to achieve your fat loss goals.  If you are interested in getting an FMS screen and/or would like to learn more about our training programs and group classes VISIT OUR WEBSITE HERE.

If you do not feel you need any help then put your money where your mouth is and perform the Self Movement Screen to make sure your foundation is rock solid.  If you pass all the tests, then fantastic!  Go after your goals and we hope that you achieve them.  If you fail any of the tests then you need to either check out an Functional Movement Professional (FMS/SFMA) or check out the book Athletic Body in Balance.

So you have passed the Level I Russian Kettlebell Challenge Certification Workshop. You put in all the hard work to prepare for this moment with months of training under your belt. Then you get to the moment where you pass the snatch test, get your technique fine tuned by the numerous high level RKC’s there to help you, and finally finish by nailing the testing portion, teaching aspect and surviving the graduation workout.

Nikki and I with Pavel in 2009

First of all, Congratulations! I have seen it time and time again. The look on someone’s face after they have returned successfully from getting RKC certified is inspiring. I get goose bumps just thinking about everything that went into getting to that moment and the feeling I had after. You will never be the same again, and more important you are part of a COMMUNITY of high level fitness professionals that will be at your side at a drop of the hat.

The Iron Tamer Clan! Friends and Comrades for LIFE!

So what do you do now? I would like to offer some advice if I may on the training side of things as well as on the business side of things.

TRAINING

Continue to work yourself through some type of program. This will help to keep those skills that you just sharpened from getting dull. I suggest the following in my opinion.

  • Perform the ETK Rite Of Passage 1-2 times per year.
    • Again this keeps your skills sharp and will help you to maintain your level of strength as you progress through the RKC. Plus it will keep you sharp once you need to re-certify.
  • Perform a snatch test AT LEAST one time per month if not more
    • One of the biggest mistakes I made once I was certified is not paying attention to the snatch test. I took 2 months off and then when I decided to do it again I could only muster 74 reps in 5 minutes.
    • It is far better to maintain than to try and train it all back again in my opinion.
  • Be on a program
    • There is nothing wrong with just working through workouts and playing around now and then, but I believe NOW that you need to have a goal in mind to reach for and a program that will take you there.
    • If you are training for Level II. Then prepare for it but do not forget to reassess your Level I skills as well.
    • If you want to maintain your skills but want to get off of the program of ROP for a bit. I suggest Kettlebell Burn or Kettlebell Muscle by Geoff Neupert. Great programs by the Master RKC himself of programming. Plus both carry over nicely to Level I and II training in my mind.
    • There are numerous programs out there for you to go by. It just depends on what you want your GOAL to be. (Return of the Kettlebell is Fantastic Material also).

BUSINESS

  • Become a Dragon Door AFFILIATE
    • For any of you who would like to make more supplemental income, we highly suggest you become a Dragon Door Affiliate. There is no cost to you and it can be a great way to make extra income on the side promoting the products and equipment that you already believe in, use and endorse.
  • Sign on with a business group
    • This really has paid off for us. IF you have a fitness business or are planning on opening up one in the future. It is CRUCIAL that you learn all aspects of your business including marketing, time management and selling. I had little to no experience in this and wish I would have done it sooner.
    • We use the Evolution Accelerator Program through Net Profit Explosion. They were referred to us directly from Dragon Door. We cannot say enough about them! They have taught us everything from proper marketing, to the sales process, to hiring employees, and time management!
    • Another great idea would be to attend Dragon Door’s Marketing Mastermind Intensive with John DuCane.

TRAINING AND BUSINESS

  • CONTINUE to LEARN
    • If the RKC is continually evolving to make itself better. Then so should you.
    • This is extremely important. I saw it in myself and in others when they came back for an RKC event and had a lot of work to do technique wise.
    • If you do not have a workout partner who is an RKC themselves then there is a good chance that your form may fade or dull slightly because there is no one present to give you feedback. I am very fortunate that I have my wife, Nikki, by my side the majority of the time to tell me if my technique can be improved on.
      • So I suggest that you either meet with another RKC every month or every other month for a workout and to check your technique.
      • You can video yourself from time to time and get feedback by watching it or by sending it to other RKC’s or posting it on the forum. I got some great feedback by other RKC’s this way on my kb snatch technique and swing which was highly valuable!
    • Attend more RKC events. I cannot stress enough the importance of attending MORE events. The RKC Level I is just the foundation to your physical and business success.

There you have it. Hopefully I have provided you with some good information for you to chew on when you are thinking of where the next step will be post RKC certification. I hope to see you at an upcoming RKC event very soon.

Hello everyone! We have 5 RKC hopefuls that will be attending the Level I Russian Kettlebell Challenge Certification this summer and wanted to post some finer points on training for and passing the RKC snatch test.

1. Have a Functional Movement Screen

  • Yeah, Yeah, I know. I am the corrective guy. But think of it this way. You have an asymmetry that is inhibiting from you using your body at its finest. The metabolic load that you place on your body when you are banging up against an asymmetry can lead to gassing you out very very fast! Do not pass go beyond this point until you get screened and correct your asymmetries.
  • Example: I had a shoulder mobility issue. I was getting gassed and ripping up my hands when I first began training for the snatch test. I was basically catching the kb wrong (probably a no count half of the time) and the load it was putting on my system was too much let alone I was setting up my shoulder and neck for disaster. It wasn’t until I took a step back, worked on my shoulder mobility daily and worked on Kalos Sthenos Get Ups and overhead walks did I overcome my issues. Then the 100 snatches came naturally and I wasn’t as gassed!

2. Know the RULES of the snatch test!

  • Why would anyone ever want to train for the snatch test let alone test out without knowing the rules? That is beyond me!
  • Now that you looked up the rules, train like them.
    1. Get a timer that beeps on the minute
    2. Get someone to count for you and you go on their count and not your own pace
    3. If no one is around to count for you then, YOU count out loud at the top of every snatch
  • This will help prepare you for the snatch test and also will allow you a little rest break at the top

2. Have the snatch technique down first, THEN start pushing towards the Snatch test.

  • One of the biggest problems we see is too many individuals going after the snatch test with crappy form. Get the form down first with your snatch test weight, THEN move into the snatch test.
  • One method that has helped our hopefuls is from Phase II of Kettlebell Burn. Set a timer for 15 minutes and then perform 3 snatches on the Left, then 3 snatches on the Right. Then set the kettlbell down. Repeat and pace yourself. Go for perfecting technique. Video yourself to see if you need to fine tune anything.
    • This is a great way for women to move into using the 16kg for the first time and for men to progress to the 24kg. Then after you have mastered that particular weight, you can even progress to heavier bells on “variety days” to make the snatch test kb seem lighter and easier to handle
  • Another huge help for preparing for snatch test is the Enter the Kettlebell Rite of Passage and/or Kettlebell Burn. These programs help you to handle the 1 arm swing and being able to perfect this technique and handle the load with your snatch test kb will help you pass your snatch test.

3. Its not a sprint, think more of an 800 meter dash.

  • Pace yourself! I see too many hopefuls who fly through the first 20-30 and then are too gassed to finish. Find a pacing method that works best for you!
  • I like the 10/10 method. I do 10 snatches on my Left, then 10 on my Right and keep switching. If I feel I am getting a little to sloppy to get a good 10/10 then I switch to 5/5

4. Try not to set the kettlebell down.

  • Just eats up too much time. I have seen people do it and pass, but I prefer to rest at the top as needed. Then I don’t lose all the momentum I have started.
  • What works best for me is I work myself ahead of the timer. Example when the first minute beeps on the timer and say I am at 24 snatches, I am ahead of the timer. Then I use a little time to rest with the kettlebell at the top. Then I just keep going after that. This has been huge for me!

5. It’s all about the HIPS!

  • I am borrowing this from Master RKC, David Whitley. When people start to lose it towards the end of their snatch test they totally forget to use their hip snap to get the kettlebell overhead. I believe this has alot to do with the drop and throwback of the kettlebell. If you don’t throw the kb back far enough (on my video you should be able to see the handle of the 24kg on the backswing) which robs you of some important energy to get the kb back overhead.

There are some great videos and article posted by some of the best in the business that very much helped me with understanding the finer points of the kettlebell snatch. RKC Team Leader, Jordan Vezina (you tube averagetoelite), RKC Team Leader, Dr. Mark Cheng, and Master RKC, David Whitley (my big brother sort of speaking).

Here is a video of my snatch test I performed today where I tried to perform all the principles above.

Here is my 5 minute snatch test with some fine points mixed in. Hope this helps.