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Old Forum new study: 32 kg bell for power

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The researchers suggested that since the back squat produced much greater ground reaction forces than the kettlebell swing with 32kg, kettlebell swings are likely not sufficient for developing muscular strength. However, they were not able to conclude this with any degree of certainty from this study, as it was an acute investigation and not a chronic one.

The researchers observed that the 32kg kettlebell produced similar mean and peak power to jump squats. They therefore propose that kettlebell swings could be suitable for a power-based program as an alternative to jump squats.
that might be true( squat= higher ground forces), but how many people can use the back squat, heavily, over any length of time ? even the 32 kg bell is available to almost all who want to swing it. and one can get great results with much less weight and virtually no chance of injury.

and if they are comparable to jump squats, well, how much more does one need?
that's an interesting conclusion as abstract says this: "However, the highest net impulse was recorded during swing exercise with 32 kg (276.1 ± 45.3 N·s vs. 60% 1RM back squat: 182.8 ± 43.1 N·s, and 40% jump squat: 231.3 ± 47.1 N·s). These findings indicate a large mechanical demand during swing exercise that could make swing exercise a useful addition to strength and conditioning programs that aim to develop the ability to rapidly apply force."

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I wonder how the results might have varied if they had used test subjects with proper kettlebell training.  If the test subjects did not have experience with kettlebells,  and did not use proper technique, that would have made the kettlebell swing seem less effective.
Christopher if you aren't strong you can't be powerful. Power is how much force you can create in how much time. If you can't create much force( strength) then it doesnt matter how fast you can do it :)


What you just stated makes a lot of sense.  In the case of football, weightlifting, Highland games, rugby, I believe you.

But, what do you make of skinny armed professional fighters like Anderson Silva that apparently have wicked punching power but probably couldn't bench press 200 lbs?  Don't tell me it's all timing, these guys hit HARD!
Isn't the priority of fast twitch over slow twitch muscle key here?  The Westside approach (from Russian sports science)  emphasizes power/speed through the use of chains/straps to counteract the tendency of slow twitch muscle to make us slower.

It's often said that KBs favor the development of fast twitch fiber. I don't know if this has been demonstrated scientifically but intuitively it seems right.
The power of a properly preformed punch is gernerated by the hips and is assisted by a lot of different muscles. The bench-press is a lot different than a punch. Also, Silva is very powerful but do you think he hits hard enough to dominate in the heavy weight division like he has in his own?

the ability to generate force does not need to come from barbell, db or kb training. The ability to contract much fibers stronger, and in sync, can come from many kinds of overload.Just as with the 'virtual' force of the kb ballistics acceleration, a fighter can generate huge amounts of force in their punches, kicks and in training.

Just as some people are born fast, some are born strong, with great muscle fiber distribution, activation ability, CNS strength , tendon and ligament positioning and strength.Lots of ways to get, and stay strong.
Would you say that Anderson Silva is strong?  How would you define strong?  Can Anderson Silva deadlift twice hides body weight and military press his body weight?  Should we say before or after his weight cut for a fight?
its hard to argue swing mechanics being proper as its hard to imagine proper squats either. I think it's a neat read but these studies give people the option of selective research. A heavy back squat is also relative, does it need to be 400 to produce peak ground force. Can a 140 lb male swing a 32 as hard as a 220 lb person with a 500 lb squat. its all just content but needs to be put into context. A heavy squat build a confidence a swing cannot, and I love swings. A 24 kg press in good, but a 225 press feels damn good.
Anderson Silva Workout Training Routine- Fitness and Diet for UFC MMA Champion, Ripped Muscle Body

Invariably, people mistake fights for pose downs. In many cases, muscular fighters perform well, but a deadlift, a military press, or six-pack abs guarantee nothing. Ken Shamrock, in his prime (as well as today), would probably out lift Anderson Silva (and win a pose down) handily. What do you  think his chances would be in a fight against Silva (even in his prime)?

In MMA, names like Phil Baroni come to mind. In boxing, Frank Bruno had an impressive physique. The list goes on and on.

The bottom line is that fighters like Anderson Silva, Thomas Hearns, Bob Foster simply have 'enough' strength (and, as Mr. Reifkind points out, athletic ability, tendon and ligament insertions, balance and leverage) to knock people out! Deadlifting 2 1/2 times your bodyweight does not guarantee such an outcome.

The point of a work like 'Easy Strength' is to ensure that strength training doesn't leave an athlete's performance in the gym, nor confuse gym performance with that of the arena.

With this in mind, I'd say Anderson Silva is strong... very strong.
"and if they are comparable to jump squats, well, how much more does one need?"

This is an excellent point. I like jump squats for their ability to develop power but don't like the wear and tear they cause my joints. This is not the case with KBs. I would also argue that KB swings work more muscle groups than the jump squat, i.e., the grip, lats, and lower back..
I think this study needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

The loads on the squats/jump squats were relative to each subjects 1RM, but the swings were held constant.  Hard to make a valid comparison in that world.
Of course force production is going to be higher with a squat, and power production is going to be higher with the swings/jump squats - that is comparing apples to oranges.
Heaveir bells are going to have higher everything (force production, power,etc) compared to lighter bells - and lighter bells are going to have higher velocities.
The swing is a skill - training of the subjects is critical to the results here.

All that being said - the article points out the high horizontal forces associated with the swing that aren't seen in the other 2.  The heavier the bell - the greater that horizontal displacement is going to be.  I think this is very important - especially since I'm guessing everyone has now switched to swinging the 32kg bell after reading this article.  That horizontal force will require more stabilizaiton forces to not fall forward at the top of the swing or backwards at the bottom.  Unless  you have spend many hours swinging a bell correctly - power production will be killed by prematurely swinging a heavier bell.  Master the skill, then progress up.  30% bw is a good number to generate the most power production on the swing - so unless you are 100kg+ the 32 will be too heavy early on for you.  Interestingly, I'm working with the author of the study to look deeper into this.......

Honor the movement and unless you have worn the handles off your lighter bells be cautious if you move up.  Just bc you can swing a heavier bell, doesn't mean you should.  I can play chicken on the interstate at rush hour.  It probably isn't in my best interest though.

Overspeed swings are good - when done with a partner or self overspeed.  Adding a band actdually changes it dramatically and the force production drops below self overspeed.  The key to the overspeed is keeping the technique - Brett Jones did some amazing overspeed swings on the forceplate that looked exactly like his normal swings.  Then again, his technique is very,very good.

Snatches - while they are amazing, since they are one arm only the force production, velocity, and power production are actually less than a 2 arm swing.

Nothing published yet, but in progress.

What a strange exercise.  I use anywhere from 12 kg to 2/3 bodyweight.  Coming to think of the swing as the nucleus of my training, with no clever garnishes.  Rif's article made The Book of Strength worth buying.
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