Kettlebell Swings are the foundation of the RKC system – and they’re one of the best exercises that exists for power, explosiveness, flexibility and extreme conditioning. But in all honesty, a steady diet of two hand Swings and not much else can get, well, a little boring.
The good news is that there are actually quite a few variations of the standard two hand Kettlebell Swing. The D.A.R.C. Swing is a one hand variation where you switch hands at the top of the movement between each repetition. Here’s a short video clip from the Sacramento Kettlebells For Fat Loss workshop I held last weekend at my personal training gym that covers a few tips on how to refine the exercise:
Here’s a recap of what I cover in the video:
1. You need to have the one hand Swing down cold before you try the Hand-to-Hand Swing. Everything in kettlebell training starts with the Swing – and the two hand version is the #1 exercise you should be looking to master. The logical progression is the two hand Swing, the one hand Swing, and then the hand-to-hand Swing.
If you don’t have the one hand Swing down before attempting the hand-to-hand version, you commonly end up too focused on switching hands and your form gets all jacked up – you lose your hip snap, ab brace, you end up swinging the ‘bell to close to the ground, etc.
2. As you learn the movement, keep the ‘off’ hand (the one you’re about to switch to) up and ready to switch. This makes it easier to ‘pluck’ the kettlebell out of the air when you let go with one hand and grab with the other.
In conclusion, the D.A.R.C. Swing is a great kettlebell Swing variation that you should be including in your workouts if you’re not already. It’ll help you mix things up and give you a new way to challenge yourself while still working on and mastering the most fundamental of kettlebell exericses, the Swing. I hope you find this quick video helpful in refining your technique – and keep training hard!
P.S. I have a ‘mini-product’ coming in the next week or two that’s all about – guess what? – the Swing. The thing is, there are a lot of resources out there that tell you how to do the basic movement, but leave out a lot of the details – and the true benefits of the move are in refining and mastering the subtilties. It’ll go over in a ton of detail exactly how to do the exercise, fixes to all the common technique problems, workouts to get you in phenomenal shape using only the Swing and a handful of other exercises, and a lot more. So stay tuned!
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