MAF for Swings/A+A

Discussion in 'Other' started by Raid, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. Raid

    Raid Double-Digit Post Count

    Is MAF applicable to Swings or is it purely for locomotion? And is it okay to get your HR higher than your MAF HR when doing A+A training? Cheers
  2. Al Ciampa

    Al Ciampa Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    Its ok to exceed your MAF with A+A swings. Average HR of the session should be about MAF. More importantly, your HR curves should improve over time.
    Nate B, Neal Sivula, jef and 2 others like this.
  3. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts


    I didn’t ask the question but thanks for the explanation. Makes sense.

    Now, if I could just figure out what my MAF is.(69 uears old, active for years, but take mild BP medicine). I’m estimating in the 120-125 range.
  4. Steve W.

    Steve W. Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    According to the article linked below, and based on the information you provided, your MAF number would be 101. That's 180 - 69 (age) - 10 (regular medication use). He lists a number of cases where various categories of people might add bpm, but they are all negated by being on regular medication. He also advises that if you are unsure whether a criteria applies to you, choose the one that results in the lower heart rate.

    From the article:
    Initially, training at this relatively low rate may be difficult for some athletes. “I just can’t train that slowly!” is a common comment. But after a short time, you will feel better and your pace will quicken at that same heart rate. You will not be stuck training at that relatively slow pace for too long.

    The 180 Formula: Heart-rate monitoring for real aerobic training. - Dr. Phil Maffetone
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
  5. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts

    Steve, I apologize for not stating my comment well. I understand the formula and the fact that it seems slow to the person new to MAF training (I have Maffetone’s “Big Book”), but as ome wise user once told me, “the only place the formula seems to break down is for the regular trainee over 60.” If mild low dose of BP medicine is an absolute disqualifier for adjustment, then 101 it is. If not, the MAF could be as high as 121.

    I stay around 101 for steady state cardio. S&S style swings result in an average of about 110 with a peak of almost 130. I don’t seem to be suffering any ill effects.

    Thanks for your response. I just think 101 for swing intervals is simply too low. I could be wrong, of course.
  6. Steve W.

    Steve W. Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    @Jim Lauerman,
    No apology necessary.
    IMO, applying MAF to kettlebell swings is kind of a kludge that AFAIK Maffetone himself would dismiss, so I think you are on safe ground listening to your body and doing what you're doing.

    I'm definitely not an expert on Maffetone, just reporting what he wrote in that particular article, in case you weren't aware of the formula, based on your original post. The article does mention individualizing the formula for those over 65:
    • The 180 Formula may need to be further individualized for people over the age of 65. For some of these athletes, up to 10 beats may have to be added for those in category (d) in the 180 Formula, and depending on individual levels of fitness and health. This does not mean 10 should automatically be added, but that an honest self-assessment is important.
    Category (d) states:
    d) If you have been training for more than two years without any of the problems in (a) and (b), and have made progress in competition without injury, add 5.

    However, "the problems in (a) and (b)" mentioned above include:
    a) If you have or are recovering from a major illness (heart disease, any operation or hospital stay, etc.) or are on any regular medication, subtract an additional 10.
    Which seems to negate any over 65 adjustment. So that's what I based my calculation on.

    If you can stay a step ahead of the MAF police, you should be safe -- just don't let your heart rate get TOO high! ;-)
    Ryan T likes this.
  7. vegpedlr

    vegpedlr More than 500 posts

    As I understand Maffetone, the 180 formula and HR does not apply to strength training of any kind, as he classifies it as anaerobic. HR only applies to aerobic training. That doesn't mean it has no use in KB training, but I doubt Maffetone will give an answer. I have heard him say a few times that the formula breaks down for athletes under 20 and over 60. That might be because it's a totally made up number and formula that doesn't relate to anything. He created it after watching zillions of athletes run on the track with HRMs. He would see a change in gait, have them note the HR, and use that as their training max. The formula came later as a way for people to estimate on their own.
    Jim Lauerman and Steve W. like this.
  8. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts

    Agreed. It can be a delicate balance atbtimes.
  9. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides More Than 10k Posts, Dir. of Community Engagement Staff Member Senior Instructor

    FWIW, and as mentioned elsewhere, it's nice to have a real HRmax if you can get one. In my playing with a Polar H10, I've hit 174 bpm and my predicted max isn't far from yours, Jim, since my age isn't far from yours. I'm 63.

    What's important, IMHO, is that since my max is actually a good deal higher than predicted, my MAF number is also higher than predicted.

  10. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts


    That would certainly seem logical but I believe that in his writing Maffetone says that the MAF heart rate is unaffected by our maximum heart rate or our resting heart rate.

    I, too, have a max well above predicted. Sometimes I think that there are just so few of us geezers training seriously that the “formulas” fall apart for us.

    At any rate, my coach convinced me this morning to pretty much ignore heart rate while training S&S and try to develop a natural feel for recovery between sets. I think that’s good advive.

    I’ll use MAF to keep from overdoing my LED cardio but not make it the Holy Grail in my KB training.

    Steve W. likes this.
  11. Al Ciampa

    Al Ciampa Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    Steve, MAF has no relationship to HRmax, so you can’t connect the dots in the way you have.
    Neal Sivula likes this.
  12. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides More Than 10k Posts, Dir. of Community Engagement Staff Member Senior Instructor

    rickyw, The Nail and Jim Lauerman like this.
  13. Al Ciampa

    Al Ciampa Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    Neal Sivula likes this.
  14. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts

    That’s pretty cool! I haven’t been harumphed for at least 40 years!
  15. vegpedlr

    vegpedlr More than 500 posts

    If by MAF you mean Maffetone Method, then Max HR is irrelevant. So too is VO2Max, lactate threshold. etc. The 180 formula is totally made up after collecting data on zillions of athletes. The lab value it is trying estimate is the 50/50 fuel utilization crossover point.
    kiwipete and Denny Phillips like this.

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