February 27

The 10,000 Kettlebell Swing Challenge – Part 1

Aspiration and Inspiration, Education, Kettlebells, Mindset, Performance, Training


I know it sounds bloody crazy hey…well it is!

But I can’t take the credit for the actual workout protocol and reasoning behind it but I will take credit for actually picking up the gauntlet and challenging myself, whilst documenting my progress and the reasons why and the results that conclude it.

The Workout Protocol in a Nutshell

Perform 10,000 Kettlebell Swings with a 24kg Kettlebell over the course of 20 workouts at 500 swings per workout, this will take approx 5 weeks for me with 4 of these workouts a week.

Each set of swings will be interspersed with a low volume set of a strength movement at my 5 rep max.

Note: Only 1 Strength movement per workout

I will be doing the following strength movements:

  • Weighted Chinups @ 10kg
  • Kettlebell Pistol Squats @ 16kg
  • Wall Walks @ Bodyweight (5 reps is conveniently my current maximum at body weight)
  • Weighted Dips @ 20kg

Each workout will follow the following template:
A1 – 10 Swings
A2 – 1 Rep Strength Movement
A3 – 15 Swings
A4 – 2 Reps Strength Movement
A5 – 25 Swings
A6 – 3 Reps Strength Movement
A7 – 50 Swings
3 Minutes Rest
Repeat for 5 Total Rounds

For the full article and protocol please refer to Dan John’s article in T-Nation here:

What’s My Motivation

  1. I haven’t followed a structured approach to my training for over a year, due a year of shoulder problems last year I was unable to pick up any head of steam with my training and lost severe motivation but I think after 17 years in the gym, it was a year I needed.
  2. I also haven’t self experimented and challenged my body for even longer, summer 2013 was the last time with the crazy Bigger Smaller Bigger Protocol of crazy calorie consumption. I love self experimentation and finding how my body reacts to it’s limits and boundaries.
  3. I’ve just started Olympic lifting and have been playing around with Squat Cleans and am looking forward to pushing this further with Clean and Jerks and Snatches later this year, 5 weeks of pulverizing my posterior chain with swings should see a huge improvement in explosive power.
  4. I’ve never got over the 200kg Deadlift mark and now I’m lighter and living a vegan lifestyle, I’d like to beat my personal best and do it by making a point.
  5. I’d like to improve my body composition and look good naked for summer.

So basically I see this crazy investment in volume and hard work as a good way to set me up for hitting my goals throughout 2015.

How Will it Help My Goals
By performing the kettlebell swing with such high volume over the course of 5 weeks my posterior chain (hamstring, glutes and lower back) will increase in strength, power and muscularity, this will hopefully have great carry over into my Olympic Lifting and Deadlifting totals.

Grip strength has a massive impact on overall strength, as it irradiates further throughout the surrounding muscle amplifying nervous system and muscle fiber activity. The Law of Irradiation states that: “A muscle working hard recruits the neighborhood muscles, and if they are already a part of the action, it amplifies their strength!”

Believe me after 1,500 swings so far this week (by the time you read this I’ll be upto 3,000-3,500) my grip and forearms have been on fire, initial blisters have been plastered and taped up, the show must go on!

Due to the anaerobic nature of the kettlebell swing, along with the sheer volume, my fitness levels and body composition should improve, in Dan John’s article every trainer that took part experienced this effect along with a huge increase in personal bests post 10k.

Due to the inter-set reps of the strength exercises I should also see an improvement in my strength performing them from the volume over 5 weeks.

Check out this awesome article below as to how the kettlebell swing could help improve back health and strength, also a great tool for rehab when performed correctly!

Optimizing Back Health With The Kettlebell Swing

So there we have it, keep an eye open on my blog and this newsletter for my progress and results over the next few weeks, I’ll be retesting my Squat Clean and Deadlift 1RM’s at the end of the process which are currently sitting at 75kg and 170kg.


About the author 

Adam Stansbury

Personal Trainer for over 10 years and a Vegan for over 5 years. I'm passionate about helping people to realise that they can transform their bodies and our planet at the same time.

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