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Kettlebell Rx: The Complete Guide for Athletes and Coaches Paperback – December 15, 2011
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The book is written by one of the premier experts to the modern kettlebell movement in North America, Jeff Martone. Amongst his many qualifications, Jeff is one of the first Senior RKC (Russian Kettlebell Challenge) instructors, creator of H2H (Kettlebell juggling for athletes), Candidate Master of Sports in in the Long Cycle (Kettlebell Sport Clean & Jerk), and is both the subject matter expert for Crossfit and Head instructor for the Crossfit Kettlebell trainers course worldwide.
Kettlebell RX is written to address both athletes and coaches in the most important kettlebell movements that generate results. It starts off by explaining the importance of safety and the different ways in applying different techniques to learning the movements. From there the book is divided into three different parts: Kettlebell for Crossfitters, Rotational Power Development, and an Introduction to Kettlebell Sport Technique.
In the first part, Jeff goes into great detail to explain the importance of functional fitness, the selection of the correct kettlebells, and places an emphasis on safety and the mastery of the drills and movements. He then goes into different sections that explain and demonstrate every movement in detail both in writing and in vivid pictures. This ranges from Joint Mobility, The Swing Series, The Turkish Get Up Series, The Clean Series, and The Overhead Series. Each section shows the correct movement, common faults and corrections. What makes it easy and comprehensive are the pictures. The pictures show the movement step by step and leave no question on how to perform anything.
The second part explains Rotational Power Development. It goes into detail on why it is important and the uses of the drills. The drills in this section are the basic movements of Jeff's H2H (Hand to Hand) system, and the foundation to expanding any athletes or coaches kettlebell repertoire. Once again, this part is filled with tons of pictures explaining each step and correction. Also, Jeff explains how to be safe before and during the drills.
After sections 1 and 2, Jeff touches on some program design for both beginners and advance users. This gives the reader a way to apply the new skills learned and it provides weeks of training.
The last part of the book provides insight on Kettebell Sport. Jeff explains what the sport is and the different lifts that are evaluated (which are all covered in the book). Jeff tells his personal story on how he was exposed to the sport and gives examples of different Kettlebell sport athletes and coaches. There are highlights of the feats that those personalities have accomplished and how the techniques and attitude of the sport translate to other sports and movements. Leaving the reader with a question, "Why not give Kettlebell Sport a try?"
So is "Kettlebell RX" the book to have? YES! After reading several books on the same subject, "Kettlebell RX," is the only one that has left me complete. It literally covers everything form A to Z, with great emphasis on safety and correctly mastering the movements. This book relates to all types of athletes, both new and old, from the practitioner to the coach. It is written straight to the point with all the non-sense left out. The pictures are great, as they breakdown the movements and explain all the mistakes and corrections. It proves that Jeff Martone is a master of his craft. If you are a Crossfitter, fighter, personal trainer or coach, "Kettlebell RX," by Jeff Martone, needs to be in your library.
Jeff Martone's kettlebell resume speaks for itself. He is certainly an expert and also an excellent teacher and coach. Martone has experience with both of the two major styles of kettlebell lifting, the so-called "hard" and "fluid" styles. He is able to explain the styles clearly and also point out that these names are more about marketing than any kind of fundamental differences.
Part one of Kettlebell Rx addresses flexibility drills and kettlebell exercises. This is by far the longest section of the book. The exercises are clearly explained and are accompanied by photos showing how they should be performed. Martone also demonstrates the common mistakes that people tend to make and gives advice on how to correct the errors. Also included is great information on how to structure the exercises into a safe and effective workout program. Not to be missed is the section on "lifting people" where Martone demonstrates his popular stunt of using a person in place of a kettlebell for a Turkish Get-Up. I don't think I'll be trying this anytime soon, but it is awesome to see! The production value of the book and the photos is very high. I am surprised the book does not cost more, given that every page is in full color on high quality paper.
Part two deals with rotational power development, such as hand-to-hand drills, "hot potato" exercises and other drills that use a lighter weight. This part of the book has the same high quality of instruction and production value.
Part three introduces kettlebell sport. Many people simply lift kettlebells for general fitness and/or to increase their performance in their other sports. However kettlebell lifting is itself a sport, with its own set of rules, tournaments, titles, etc. Martone introduces us to the sport, describes its history and champions, and also recounts his own experience in achieving his first title.
As good as this book is, and as Martone himself points out, there is no substitute for having a trainer if you are just starting kettlebell lifting. Having a knowledgeable trainer watch and correct your form is the best and safest way to begin lifting kettlebells. I know it is expensive (believe me, I know!) but your health is worth it. In my experience, a trainer can teach you the basics that you need to know in around ten sessions. That and a kettlebell or two will be all you need for a lifetime of fitness. It is a terrific bargain!
If you absolutely can not, or will not, get a trainer then at least have another person watch you lift and help you correct your form with the guidance in the book. But I would really recommend a trainer.
I really can not recommend this book highly enough. If you are a kettlebell enthusiast, you simply must have this book. If you are thinking about starting kettlebell lifting, this should be your first book. It could really be your only book.
It's that good.
Jeff came out with one of the most comprehensive books I have ever seen on kettlebells giving you the big picture. He covers everything from A to Z leaving no question in the readers mind on what to do next. Kettlebell RX covers flexibility and joint mobility drills with hundreds of other movements broken down. In this book you will learn various series on cleans, swings, turkish get ups, rotational development, program design and much more. His attention to detail and step by step methods makes it easy for the modern athlete to the common fitness enthusiast to learn from. His step by step illustrations shows the proper techniques as well as common error in techniques that you may come across.
This is the complete guide to kettlebell training and a must have in anyone's training arsenal. I was once running a 7:00 minute mile but since I have been using kettlebells I have knocked a minute off of my run time without even running. Kettlebells will give you a complete aerobic, anaerobic, and strength conditioning level of fitness. I highly recommend Kettlebell RX to anyone wanting to take there fitness to the next level. You can use kettlebells anywhere and keep fit with brief intense workouts. Jeff Martone set the bar extremely high with Kettlebell RX. It is a true no nonsense approach to true functional strength training.