Sunday, 28 February 2010

I know This Is Wrong, But........

I was a big fan of Rocky IV. The training montages were cheesy but inspiring. Sly was ripped to shreds and Dolph Lundgren posed a formidable figure as the towering Russian, Ivan Drago. I even loved Dolph in Show Down in Little Tokyo with the late Brandon Lee (son of Bruce Lee). For me he stole the show in Universal Soldier starring as a futuristic ultimate soldier, along side Jean Claude Van Damme. The 80's were a golden era indeed. But somethings, yes, somethings, just shouldn't be done.

With the advent of Sly Stone's movie Expendables being released this spring featuring Dolph and an extensive list of 80's action hero's, and recent one's as well (cue Jet Li, Jason Statham, Randy Couture) Dolph will no doubt be placing his head in his hands, and cringing when stuff like the clip below start to resurface. Dolph? Do you actually just say "feel the burn"? What were you thinking man?!!

That said, I'll be first in line to get my ticket for the new action movie, Expendables.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

King Of Clubs?

The Indian Club became popular in Europe and the United States in the 19th and 20th Century. They range from a 1lb with special clubs often weighing in at up to 50lbs. A key favourite of Kushti Wrestlers in India. Indian Clubs formed an indisposable part of their training routine. They were used in carefully choreographed routines and swung in circular rhythmical movements. The lighter clubs were great for joint health, coordination, improving strength of the shoulders and supporting muscles of the shoulder girdle. The heavier clubs were used to create formiddable strength, dynamic flexibility and motor coordination, and guess what? They're making a comeback. Check out the video by Rannoch of Simple Strength to see them in action.

Come back? Ok, so not really. They Indian Clubs have been used to this day by the British Forces, and is slowly starting to take another firm foot hold here in England with CrossFit London taking the lead. 75 year old Krishen Jalli is swinging away with 15kg Indian CLubs at one of the Cross Fit sessions.

Over the coming weeks I'll be posting more about Inidan Clubs rich history in Kushti wrestling, plus their use in the UK and Indian Clubs massive potential for functional training.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Full Throttle Fitness Workout Of The Week No 7 (W.O.W 7)

Although Mr CJ Swaby was noticeably absent (and truly missed), we still could feel his presence and watchfull eye in the air. I am sure he would be proud seing the effort everyone has put into the session.

W(orkout) O(f the) W(eek) :

Joint mobility warm up

Workout:5 rounds:

1 minute on each station

Row (minimum pace - 250m per minute)

KB Swing

KB Snatch (30 sec per arm)

KB Renegade Row

Jumps over bench

Sandbag slam

Rest 2 mins inbetween each round

Then - team push up ladder.

Looks like: one person does 10 push ups, all others hold plank position (elbows straight and in lock out), then next player does 10 push ups, others hold the plank, etc until everone has done 10 reps, then 9, 8, etc ... down to 1.

Cool down and stretch

Sunday, 21 February 2010

CJS Fitness Hits Heavy With New Premises

Cj has been involved in the Club for over 14 years, but now CJS Fitness is officially pairing up with Earlsfield Boxing Club in London.

From 1st March 2010, the Boxing club will be home to a new timetable of exciting new class sessions. From Boxing Classes aimed at those who just want to keep fit or want a taster before going into the 'Boxers only' sessions, these morning and evening boxing classes are suitable for men and women alike.

The Boxing club will be also feature a line up of quality Kettlebell Classes in wandsworth, London. Kettlebell exercises are known for their effectiveness to tone up, get you strong, lean and functionally fit. The first kettlebell classes of their kind in wandsworth, IKFF Coach Cj Swaby, and Coach Skala will be at the helm delivering fantastic Kettlebell workouts. There are beginners, intermediate and advanced level classes in available in their new Wandsworth home. There will even be morning, ladies only Kettlebell sessions for mums wanting to get back into shape.

Quality Personal Training, and Small Group Personal Training will still be available in the fully equipped studio located within the Earlsfield Boxing Club. CJS Fitness will also be on hand to help the fighters with their Strength and Conditioning, plus making sure the local commuity stay in shape.

If you want to get a more in depth understanding about the art of boxing or work on your kettlebell technique, CJS Fitness will run regular Boxing and Kettlebell workshops.

To Find out more about the timetable and open day drop us an email at with Open Day in the heading. Alternatively text Open Day to (+44) 07903 210 510

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Flat Earth Fitness

The earth is round. Now this may not come as a big surprise, but in 240 BC when Eratosthenes first determined the Earth's circumference it was quite a big deal, even though Pythagoras had pretty much argued the point 6th Centuary BC. In fact it took a few centuries for the idea to catch on. It is now generally accepted as common sense (though I'm sure the flat earth society would have something to say about that).

I'm often asked what the best ratio of weight training verses cardiovascular training. The American College Of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recomend,

" Do moderately intense cardio 30 minutes a day, five days a week, Do vigorously intense cardio 20 minutes a day, 3 days a week And Do eight to 10 strength-training exercises, eight to 12 repetitions of each exercise twice a week." (ACSM Guidelines fo Healthy Adults Under 65)

While these maybe useful guidelines. This is very much flat earth thinking. Now, before you start pelting me with stones, hear me out. I'd like to make this distinction, Weight Training is a training modality, cardiovascular is a definite physiological system. You can use a plane to fly, but the plane is not flight itself. Don't confuse the two.

Try this out for a example. Pick up a light to moderately heavy weight (any lift of your choice). Put it down. What do you notice happen to your breathing? Nothing much? ok, so now do this continuously for 3 to 5 minutes. What now? Starting to breath a little more heavily? hhhmmm interesting right? Now what if you structured this so that you could maintain it for 30 minutes, or even several bouts of 10 minute efforts; wouldn't that meet the ACSM guidleine for cardiovascular training? But hang on, aren't you doing weight training or a type of strength training at the same time? (you see where I am going with this right?).

If your are simply training for health benefits and time is your premium, Flat Earth Fitness might not be the best way to go about it. Infact it might take you a lot longer to see results. Once of the reasons interval training using weights is becoming so popular is exactly because if its ability to boost your metabolism, burn more calories, get your body chisled, and improve your cardiovascular system all at the same time. It's also a great benefit of Kettlebells when used effectively.

Are the ACSM guideline incorrect? of course they're not. They are a fantastic starting point. However, if you're further along the road and not seeing the results you want, do yourself a favour, give your Flat Earth Fitness training the sack. Add some dimension to it. Ok, so how do you structure your training week? The Goldie Locks principle is a great way to go. Invented by Rannoch of Kettlebells Scotland, it goes something like this;

Cold Porridge

"This session is all technique. Pure focus on perfect movement. An ego less session dedicated to hard wiring superior form. This session should leave you feeling like you can keep going, easily."

Hot Porridge

"The second session is hard. Grisly bear hard. Scalding. You will push yourself. Even if you just work two moves back to back, it will be tough. You are in the driving seat. You know it’s hard. You know that whining lizard brain will try and get you to quit before the body has had enough. You will abide. You only train at this intensity once a week, so make it count. This session should leave you happy to put the weight down and get horizontal. Look for a bed that’s “just right”."

Just Right

"The third session is about finding the sweet spot. Here you use a challenging weight/rep count but you keep gas in the tank. As soon as form breaks, stop. Catch your breath and go again. Leave a couple of reps on the table. Thirty minutes after this session you could go again. You might not want to but you could."

This is a really simple protocal, but very effective. For 'Hot Porridge' ideas check out our youtube channel, or drop us an email to find out more about general training.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

F**k It Lent

Last year, we posted about a book called F**k It: The Spiritual Way. It's such a great little book we signed up for their (monthly - ish) newsletter. Never one to disappoint, they came up with this gem for lent.

F**k It Lent

"So Lent has just kicked off with a belly full of pancakes or some carnival experience (depending on where you are in the world), not that most of us give a second thought to this whole Lent thing from now on in.

However, given that Lent is about giving up stuff, in remembrance of Jesus spending 40 days in the desert with not a crumb to eat – and that nowadays people do sometimes give up stuff, like chocolate – it’s worth thinking a little bit about giving up.

Giving up, after all, is a very F**k It activity.
The weird thing is, though, that most people tend to give up things that they really like (chocolate, cakes, carbs, sex, etc.).
The F**k It way, and the eminently more sensible way I should say, is to give up things that we don’t really like. Why are we doing things that we don’t like in the first place you may ask… obligation, sense of duty, habit, plain old masochism, etc. etc..

So, this Lent, make it a F**k It Lent, and give up (permanently) something you really don’t like in your life… eg…
- Seeing people socially whom you don’t really like
- Working too hard to sustain a pointlessly lavish lifestyle
- Your partner, if they drive you mad
- Studying anything that bores you stupid
- Salad
- Wearing a suit
- Going to the gym
- Cottage cheese
- Wearing a suit at the gym

Til next time, John & Gaia x"

A touch of class, that's what we reckon. Well, if you like what you've read why not check out their website here. John and Gaia: step up and take a bow.

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Full Throttle Fitness: Workout Out Of The Week No 6 (W.O.W)

When Katarina Helcmanovska turns around and tells you that was the hardest session, and best one so far this year; you don't take it lightly. This is the woman that matched Steve Cotter rep for rep in the over head squat on the CKT Kettlebell Instructor workshop. February 13th was one session we did not take lightly. Believe you me.

Full Throttle Fitness Workout Of The Week (W.O.W) No 6

Warm up: Joint Mobility & Dynamic Movement

Section One: Cj Swaby

Protocol: 3 Minute Round (30 seconds per exercise)

Rest 30/40 seconds then Tabata protocol 20:10 Sprints

This constitutes one circuit. Complete 3 circuits.

3 Minute Round Exercise Menu

Double Kettlebell Swings x 30 seconds
Traveling Press Ups (clap optional) x 30 seconds
Double Kettlebell Cleans x 30 seconds
Burps x 30 seconds
Partial Gets Ups x 30 seconds per arm

Section Two: Coach Skala

So Coach Skala's was pretty simple, pretty brutal, pretty much begrudged by us all. It went down like this...

Double Kettlebell Cleans x 15 reps.
Traveling Burpees x 2 minutes.

Rest 2 minutes.

Complete 3 sets.

Simple right? (I DON'T THINK SO!!).Don't believe me? check it out below. That was it. We were well and truly done!

Full Throttle Fitness Class

Saturdays 12:15pm - 1:15pm
Balance Physiotherapy, 113 Gauden Road, Clapham, London, UK

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Full Throttle Fitness: Workout of the Week No 5 (W.O.W)

It wasn't intentional, and we didn't mean to do it (ok, so maybe we did) but when Coach Skala and I got together last Friday to plan the class for Saturday 6th February we opted for the strong Kettlebell execise feature in the class. Between her Full Throttle and Industrial Strength double bill, combined with her marathon training the week before, Coach Skala had managed to pick up an injury. We braved on and combined minds to put together a beast of a session.

Full Throttle Fitness Workout Of The Week No 5 (W.O.W).

Warm Up: Joint Mobility & Dynamic Movement

Section One: Cj Swaby

Double Kettlebell work with a moderate weight. Men used 16kg - 24kg. Women used 12kg or 16kg. The protocol was simple.

5 Double Kettlebell exercises x 5 reps x 5 sets.

Rest? Come on now, lets be serious!!! there was no designated rest. It was as and when, keeping it to a minimum, keeping a high rate of quality work capacity.

Exercise Selection

Double Kettlebell Swing x 5
Double Kettlebell Renegade Row into Press ups x 5
Double Kettlebell Two Hands Anyhow x 5
Double Kettlebell Front Squat x 5
Double Kettlebell Jerk x 5

x 5 sets

We rested for 5 minutes before Coach Skala put this one on us....

Section Two: Coach Skala

Double Kettleblell Man Maker and Tuck Jump Ladder. We do 10 reps of Man Makers, then 10 tuck jumps, then 9 reps of each working our way down to 1. Simple right? Only thing is, it hurts like hell. If you are not sure what it looks like, check out the clip below for a break down of the Full Throttle Fitness workout session.

Full Throttle Fitness Class
Saturday's 12:15 - 1:15pm
Balance Physiotherapy
113 Gauden Road
Clapham, SW4 6LE

Friday, 5 February 2010

Given Up On New Years Resolutions? Failure is Only Feedback

I wanted to write a piece on New Years Resolutions. I don't make them, but I know a lot of people do, and February is the time when enthusiasm starts to fizzle out and your monkey (that little voice in your head) whips his stick out and frantically beats any hope, self esteem or dreams you had of achieving your resolutions to a slow and painful death. Scathed, and disheartened this is the point where many give up. But bare this in mind,

"Failure is only Feedback" - Ken Blackburn, Director IKFF

Ken wrote an inspiring piece about sticking to your goals in his blog, packed full with practical tips. He goes on to say,

"although easier said than done, learn to disconnect from the emotional component of failure and just see it as feedback. As Edison said - “I didn’t fail ten thousand times. I successfully eliminated, ten thousand times, materials and combinations which wouldn’t work.” So, in a sense, if you aren’t failing, you are not trying."

It's definitely worth the time reading. But he did miss something out, and I would like to throw my two penny's worth in the mix.

Solution focused is a powerful way to be. Instead of beating yourself up over the things you didn't do or should have done, focus on what worked and what you did do. Then aim to do more of it. Gradually, over time these will become the prominent behaviour. You may still fall off the wagon, but it won't be as often, or as big a deal. Use your energy wisely. I'll leave you with this thought from Bruce Lee

"Keep your mind on the things you want, and off the things you don't." - Bruce Lee