Dan Johns "the 10000 swing kettlebell workout" article from t-nation


Level 4 Valued Member
http://www.t-nation.com/workouts/10000-swing-kettlebell-workout ,


Printed it and will put it in rotation at some point.


Level 2 Valued Member
The program doesn't state whether one- or two-arm swings should be used, so I assume either is acceptable? I say that because one-arm has been my preference for some time.


Level 2 Valued Member
I started this programme together with my wife today. I stopped the ROP after completing it with the 24kg and need to give my shoulders a break so this seems like a nice challenge. We took our time today just to see what it is like to do 500 swings per day. Went well for me, ended up doing single handed for the 50 reps and alternate 25L-25R, last one 15L-15R-10L-10R. Will aspire to do 50 double-handed but for now I reckon it's all about just getting the volume in and completing the 4-5 weeks. Wife is new to kettlebells so for the last 50 I let her stop at 30, she has something to aspire to (still 400 swings in total for her).


Level 1 Valued Member
This program looks to me both challenging and interesting!  I have been doing the PM for about 2 months and will be for a few months more and just started using a 20kg bell and hoping to progress to a 24kg in three or four weeks but have also been wanting to add some barbell work to my training  in the future so was thinking:

monday : swings with bench press

tuesday : swing with squats

wednesday : rest

thursday : swings with shoulder press

friday : swings with dead lift (one dead lift after each set for a total of 25)

saturday : rest

sunday : rest

What are  peoples  opinions of this as an idea?

Dan John

Level 3 Valued Member
It's two handed swings. If you change it, fine, but then its not the program. At my blog, danjohn.net, you can see how we added a lot more to this, refined the lifts in-between and play around with a lot of different things. Yesterday, for example, I did 250 swings and Group A and Group B on the 15/35 workout. So, the swings were solid throughout, but I also got in my work on the ground, fundamental lifts and some stretches.

I am not a fan of one handed swings for me and most the people I work with in my gym. We have asymmetry issues and, well, that's it. I far prefer doing 500 swings five days a week, or 250 forever, and using the swing as a once stop GPP.

Again, I know that everyone wants to change programs. We did this one, nailed the 10,000 reps reasonably, got the results, improved our other lifts with the WTH effect and now we are looking at ways to improve it. But, we did the program first.

I walked into the Sistine Chapel and saw Michelangelo on the scaffolds. I yelled up: "More blue."

That's how I feel when I see people look at a program and immediately "make it better." My best success in my career has been following a program exactly (ROP, Soviet Squat, PBBC and OLAD all come to mind) then tweak and discuss at the end.

So, as you can see with FlyingPig's insights, you did 25/25...which is fine, but mind boggling boring and hard to remember over a few weeks. With our system, we just throw something (lately mini-bands or lawn golf balls) into the middle. Once you see four balls in the middle, you finish that set and go home.

The mind and free will are at task here. 500 Swings a day is a lot and, frankly, it is nice to just follow the path and just count 100s.


Level 4 Valued Member

I walked into the Sistine Chapel and saw Michelangelo on the scaffolds. I yelled up: “More blue.”

That’s how I feel when I see people look at a program and immediately “make it better.” My best success in my career has been following a program exactly (ROP, Soviet Squat, PBBC and OLAD all come to mind) then tweak and discuss at the end."


This is brilliant. Mostly because I always say the same. You can tweak a program but you better have done it as written first for a while, when you add something you remove something.


Level 2 Valued Member
Dan, I don't have access to any weights other than my 24 and 36kg kettlebell. I agree with your above post, but without weights, what is your take in using appropriate body weight progressions or reps for the ladders?
Examples- head or full range handstand push-ups, pistols, front lever pull-ups, planch or 1 arm push-ups, and dips?


Level 6 Valued Member
i am a martial artist, to me it seems a perfect combination with my ma training.

if i am right its a routine that you have to follow by the letter? i mean, you dont have to add more exercises etc.?

so just follow this routine and train martial arts, no need for more strenght/conditioning?

and what are the results, this is a question for guys following this routine.


Level 2 Valued Member
I accept Dan's point and don't think I'm one of these people trying to be too clever. So far done Easy Strength, Kettlebell Burn and ROP to the letter. It wasn't really clear to me about doing everything double handed, especially after Tamer's post about volume, and the point somebody else made about what if you can't do 50 in a row still stands. Anyway, I'm glad to have found something based around the swing I can do together with my wife (important for her motivation and consistency). I'd happily deviate slightly if it means I can get her to do a large volume of swings herself instead of her wasting her time in a commercial gym so for me it's a pragmatic thing. I'll post back once we have the 10,000 swings under our belt, and let's see how I fare doing it all double handed.

Iron Tamer

Strongman, Speaker and Seeker of Truth
To clarify: I didn't say change the program, I said 1 handed swings work better for high volume training. Getting 200, 300, 500+ swings in one uninterrupted set with single hand and multiple switches is easier to do than with 2 hand swings. I can't speak for everyone, but anyone who has done extended single sets will likely agree with me.

In my experience, single hand swings give more conditioning and more grip strength in the long run, because you are doing multiple sets of groove-greasing grip work while your hips and the rest of you are powering along at an even pace.

I say this as a part of the discussion on swings in general, not Dan's article. If you want to do the program, do it. Don't add blue to it.


Level 2 Valued Member
Daniel John,

This probably goes without saying, but everything you say makes a lot of sense. And the golf ball/band thing is simple but... why didn't I ever think of it before?

My intention is always to follow the program to the letter - although an obvious consideration is, does this fit in with the training availability in my current circumstances, or can I alter things slightly so that it does?

Anyway, I have been RoPing all year, and will continue for a few months. But this looks such an attractive plan, I will pencil it in, probably in the New Year.

It really is a beautiful thing that you put this stuff "out there" for the community. It's much appreciated (and that goes for all the seniors/masters on here).
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