Power breathing techniques can instantly boost your kettlebell pressing strength by 10-20%. A quick story for illustration:
I had never even seen ‘The Beast’ (the RKC’s affectionate term for the ‘big boy’ 106 pound kettlebell) let alone pressed one overhead … in fact, my previous personal best military press was 7o lbs for a single rep.
But as Pavel led attendees of the June 2009 RKC through a series of breathing and tension drills to maximize our pressing strength, no less than 50% (at the very least) of us set a personal record in the KB press … by the end of the day, I was pressing the Beast with ease!
How could this be? Pavel states in his book Power To The People:
“It is estimated that an average person can contract only 20-30% of his muscles when trying his hardest. Even a top lifter uses no more than 50% of his impressive muscles!”
He then goes on to detail his various methods of boosting neurological efficiency for instant strength increases – including power breathing.
Here’s how you would use power breathing to give your KB Press an instant boost:
*Also important to note: A disclaimer is made by Pavel in the book that this type of breathing generally will be frowned upon by medical professionals and could be pontentially dangerous – so make sure to check with your doctor before doing it!
- Inhale before you load your muscles – so in a kettlebell Press, right before you clean the kettlebell off the ground.
- Clean the kettlebell to your shoulder and go directly into a press without letting your breath out. Maintain tension in your abdominals and throughout your entire body. Do NOT exhale with the KB shoulder or let tension ‘escape’ in any way!
- Exhale as you press through your sticking point in the press or after you finish the move
- Use this technique when doing singles or very low reps only
Our muscles have a lot more contractile power than we use, and power breathing is one technique to tap into additional strength reserves and boost your kettlebell Pressing power instantly by 10-20%. This post just scratches the surface of these methods – for details of many other high tension and ‘neurological trickery’ techniques from Pavel, pick up a copy of Power to The People by clicking the image below: