The Kettle-Bell swing is one of my favorite exercises to help develop and teach clients explosive power. During the KB swing, you’ll be using your hips as the primary muscle to “throw” the weight up towards the ceiling.

The KB swing has tremendous carry over to strengthen your Jumps, Deadlifts, Squats and Sprints but can also be used as a conditioning drill.

It is a also a great non-impact exercise to use in place of jumping.

Here is how to perform the KB Swing

 

There are key points to remember in the kettle-bell swing:

  • Hinge, don’t squat: The swing is a simple exercise but tends to be done wrong frequently.  It is not a squat, it is a powerful hip-hinge movement. That means that the hips go back (hinge), and the knees only bend slightly (they bend fully in a squat). Think about this position as a jump. If you try to jump forward as far as possible, the bottom position is the same position that you use at the bottom of the kettle-bell swing.
  • Be explosive with the hips, not the arms: The swing is a ballistic movement. If you think of a bullet fired out of a gun, it receives all of its power initially and then relies on momentum to hit its target. The same goes for the swing. The hips provide the explosive power throwing the kettle-bell up in the air and the arms are there just for the ride. Do not worry about how high the kettle-bell goes. Your goal is to let it float up once the hips have used up their power.
  • Protect the back: Do not let the kettle-bell pull the lower back into a bad position at the bottom of the swing. Keep everything tight from your shoulders, to your lats, chest and abdominals all the way to your quads and glutes.  Do not lose this tightness in any part of the movement.
  • Location on the downswing is important: Ensure the kettle-bell passes between your legs on your upper thighs.  If you’re a little intimate with the KB, you’re probably doing it right.  Wait until the last second to hinge back and let the kettle-bell go between your upper thighs. If you find your forearms hitting your lower thighs, you are putting too much strain on the lower back.

In this post I am going to explain exactly why you need to take your intensity up in your training and provide exactly how to do so.

The tips I’m about to uncover WILL invoke the body to re-shape with eye popping, muscle definition, causing the opposite sex to sustain neck injuries from whiplash and weakness in the knees…

Ok, little dramatic there but you get the idea.

Through the concepts I’m going to describe to you, you’re going to learn exactly what you need to do to rev your metabolic rate so high that you’ll burn up body fat even while you’re at home kicked back watching t.v.

Sound too good to be true?

If you’re like most people, this is exactly how you would LOVE to be able to lose fat. You’re doing very little work but melting fat off your body.

Possible? Absolutely. But, only after you put in the hard work with your trainingfirst.

Continue reading 5 Ways To Take Your Workouts to the Next Level

If you’re going to train or compete in Strongman, it is inevitable that you’re going to come across the Atlas Stone.

So, to help you out with the form and proper technique of lifting one of the most recognized events in all of Strongman sports… Check out the videos below.

How to Perform the Atlas Stone

Stone of Steel

The Maniacs and several new visitors gathered at Mayhem Fitness and Cross Training this past Saturday for an epic Strongman workshop.

We went over form, technique and application of several Strongman implements including:

  • Atlas Stones
  • Log Clean & Press
  • Axel Bar Deadlifts
  • Yoke Carry
  • Tire Flips
  • and everyone’s favorite – Truck Pulls

During our time together there was lots of grunting, laughing and clapping through several new personal records.

Take a look at all the action and join us for the next one.  Make sure you’re following us on Instagram and Facebook for updates on upcoming events.

Strongman Saturday Trailer

Ashley gets a new PR on the Log Clean and Press

Tips for a better Overhead Press

See more action on Instagram by clicking here. (be sure to view the Strongman Highlight Tab)

Keep Pounding Yall 👊

Murphy

Check out this highlight reel of our athletes in all the fun action!

You can also view each event separately in this YouTube Playlist – CLICK HERE to view on YouTube

After that, my full competition recap is posted in the video below.

In it I address:

  • Some of the fears and concerns the athletes went through and how they were able to overcome them
  • The breakdown of the events and how our athletes performed with each one
  • How our athletes were the talk of the competition amongst their peers
  • What it takes to become a Champion
  • How to become the Strongest version of yourself and why I say the Ultimate Weapon for Personal Development is not found in school, books, podcasts or videos but comes from a Barbell

You can watch the complete recap here:

EVENTS:

  1. Log Clean & Press – Heaviest weight lifted wins – 3 attempts
  2. Deadlift Medley – Barbell, Axel Bar + Wagon Wheels, Car Deadlift for reps – Most reps wins
  3. Stone Putt – Farthest Distance wins
  4. Yoke Ladder – Carry for 80 feet, dropping at each 20 foot marker adding 50 more pounds. Quickest time wins
  5. Stone of Steel Over Bar – Most reps wins

WEIGHTS FOR OUR WOMEN ATHLETES

  1. Log – Most weight lifted – 125
  2. Deadlift – Bar – 250 / Axel – 275 / Car Deadlift – 570
  3. Stone Putt – 11lbs
  4. Yoke Ladder – Started at 200, finished at 350
  5. Stone of Steel – 175lbs

WEIGHTS FOR MASTERS

  1. Log – PR at 230
  2. Deadlift – Bar 405 / Axel – 450 / Car – ???
  3. Stone Putt – 16lbs
  4. Yoke Ladder – Started at 400 – finished at 550
  5. Stone of Steel – 250lbs

Results of our athletes

There were 5 girls competing in the Women’s MiddleWeight Novice division

In Womens:

Log Clean & Press – Celeena finished 1st, Liz took 2nd, Hannah 5th

Deadlift Medley – Hannah took 1st, Celeena 2nd and Liz 3rd

Stone Throw – Celeena 1st, Hannah 3rd, Liz 5th

Yoke Ladder – Hannah 1st, Celeena 2nd, Liz 3rd

Stone Over Bar – Celeena 1st, Hannah 4th, Liz 5th

Overall Points – Celeena 23, Hannah 16 and Liz finished 1 point behind the 3rd place finisher at 12

Celeena Buth took home 1st Place 🏆 in Women’s Novice Middleweight

Hannah Harpold took home 2nd Place 🏅 in Women’s Novice Middleweight

In the Mens’ Masters there were 6 of us competing

In the Log, I finished 2nd (same weight as 1st place but I was slower).

In the Deadlift I finished 3rd (again, tied in reps but slower)

In the Stone Throw I finished 5th and damn near took everybody out so 🙈

In the Yoke Ladder I finished 2nd

In Stone Over Bar I finished 4th

I took home 3rd Place 🎖 with a total of 19 points, 6 points behind 1st.

Here is the Full Score Sheet – Leprechaunscoresheet

Everybody came home a Stronger, more confident Champion version of themselves

From left to right (Liz Stephens, Celeena Buth, Sean Murphy, Hannah Harpold)

If you are ready to become the Strongest and Fittest version of yourself, hit me up for Personal Training or Online Coaching / Programming at coachseanmurphy@gmail.com

Keep Pounding 👊

Murph

Special Thanks To: Coach, Sean Coffey for organizing and putting on this event. 

Iron Asylum Gym – VA Beach VA for hosting the event and to all the sponsors:

  • Southside Harley-Davidson
  • Oceana Nutrition Corner
  • Brian Latuga
  • Fruitive
  • SBD
  • A7 Intl
  • Swōl Food
  • Cerberus Strength USA
  • PNC
  • Born Primitive
  • Warrior Genetics Lab
  • 5.11 Tactical
  • Strike Force
  • London Bridge Trading
  • Special Ops Survivors
  • Aegis Strength & Conditioning LLC
  • Play Again Now – Recovery
  • Wasserhund Brewing Company
  • Jimmy Dillon

Fix Your Pushup with the following steps:

The Setup

  1. Stack shoulders directly over your hands.  Your hands should not be out in front of you nor spaced wider than shoulder width.
  2. Screw our hands into the floor. This is a coaching cue I give to my clients that truly helps to engage the serratus anterior and lats while protecting your shoulders from impingements.  Without actual moving your palms from the floor, drive and rotate your hands away from one another as hard as you can.  Think of actually screwing your hands deep through the floor.  Maintain this tightness throughout the entire pushup.
  3. Next, engage your core by keeping your hips slightly up.  Forget the rule of a straight line from the base of your neck to your heels.  By engaging a slight hip up position, you’ll target your overall full body strength and posture.

The Execution

  1. Lower your chest about an inch from the floor keeping your hips and core engaged.
  2. As you lower, keep your elbows slightly back positioning yourself in a tight triangle pattern.  This will target more tricep (the back of your arm) and protect your shoulders.
  3. Push back up to start position while maintaining overall tightness in your entire body.
  4. Rep for reps or time.

Add chains, bands or a weight vest if you need more of a challenge.

Click here to learn how to incorporate bands into your Pushup or even Dumbbell work.

Standard grip, mix grip, hook grip?

Which one should you use?

Use them all.

Here’s why I like to incorporate each variation of these grips in my Deadlift training.

Standard, Double Overhand Grip

💥Develops overall grip strength with no extra assistance

💥Will not create imbalances in posture, particularly the upper back .

Mix Grip

💥Helps lift more weight

💥Doesn’t fatigue grip as fast

💥Helps develop bicep strength

Hook Grip

💥Practically cannot lose your grip

💥Develops high pain threshold 😮

Here’s the thing. I use to only use mix grip in my training and it caused me big problems with my lower back.

By continuing to grip the bar with left hand under and right hand over (my strongest grip position) I was causing severe posture imbalances which led to another lower back flare up that put ALL my training on hold for a good 3-4 months.

Since then, if I use the mix grip it’s on 2 conditions.

1. It’s only after I’ve reached a weight that I can’t handle for double overhand or I’ve exhausted my grip due to high reps, as seen in video below

2. I switch my hand position each working set. If I start left over, right under I’ll make sure that the next set my left hand is now under and right over.

By switching my hands each set I’m helping to keep my posture and structural integrity in check.

As far as hookgrip is concerned, I’ll use it as a gut check and will use this when I’m feeling I need to man up

Oh… And what about lifting straps

I never use them in training, maybe for a PR or when a competition allows but honestly, I feel they are cheating yourself out of true strength.

Keep Pounding Yall 👊

I can’t give you abs overnight or get you from couch potato to Greek God(dess) in 6 weeks.

I can’t add 100 pounds to your Bench, Squat or Deadlift with one single session or coaching cue.

I can’t get you invited to the gun show 💪 with one magic exercise.

I can’t promise you’ll lose weight by following any of my training advice because I can’t control your diet.

But what I CAN do is:

  1. Make sure you’re doing the right exercises, at the right times, at the right intensity with the correct form each training session
  2. Make sure you’re following a sound diet that you can actually adhere to that will help you lose weight, get stronger and feel amazing
  3. Make sure you’re given the right support, encouragement and feedback you WILL need to get from where you’re at today to where you want to go.

No short cuts, No mysterious, magical methods.

Just hard work, structure and progression over time. 👊

Let me know when you’re done being frustrated and let down by gimmicks, challenges, quick fixes, garbage supplements and whatever else you’re fooling yourself with thinking it’ll work this time 👎

We’ll work together to help you transform your life into a stronger, more fit and confident BEST version of yourself.