A Little Kettlebell History…

Congratulations to both Joy and Shane Healy on receiving their CrossFit Kettlebell Certifications this past weekend. In light of this awesome accomplishment, CrossFit Beyond members will be learning several new kettlebell movements this week and incorporating them in the WODs.

In case you wanted to know a little bit about the origin of Kettlebells, I found this interesting article from http://www.kettlebellsusa.com

KB man

(I feel like Ron could pull this look off...what do you all think?)

A Brief History of Kettlebells

The history of the kettlebell is somewhat unclear, however, it appears that the Russian Kettlebell as we know it today, originated approximately 350 years ago. The first appearance of the word in a Russian dictionary appeared in 1704. They were originally used as handled counterweights (bearing the Imperial Seal) to weigh out dry goods on market scales. People started throwing them around for entertainment and they were later put to use for weight lifting. The Russians measured items in “poods.” A pood (16.38 kg, or 36.11 pounds) can be traced back to the 12th century. Kettlebells are still weighed in poods.

In 1948, modern kettlebell lifting became the Soviet Union’s national sport. In the 1970's kettlebell lifting became part of the United All State Sport Association of the USSR, and in 1985 national rules, regulations & weight categories were finalized. In November, 1985 the first National Championship took place in Lipetsk, Russia. The Russian Military requires it recruits to train with kettlebells. The United States Secret Service & the FBI Counter Assault Team also require their operators to train high repetition, ballistic kettlebell moves.

Many cultures throughout history have used some form of weight with an attached handle for strength training. Scottish tribes hurled weighted objects with handles in Highland Games. Chinese Shaolin Monks, used stone padlocks in similar ways to kettlebells. This type of training was called Shi-SuoGuong (The Art of Stone Padlock) and predates kettlebells by thousands of years. There is speculation that kettlebell-like weights were used by the Romans & Greeks.

Kettlebells were used extensively by old time
strongmen such as Arthur Saxon, Sig Klein, Clevio Massimo and The Mighty Apollo. They were once a common staple in American gyms and training academies and were often called “Ring Weights”.

Pro Grade, or "Competition" Kettlebells are made to fixed specifications. They are made of steel, rather than cast iron, and are used in international kettlebell competitions. Unlike classic cast iron kettlebells, pro grade kettlebells always have the same dimensions regardless of weight. This means that whether you are using an 8kg/18Lb bell or a 32kg/70 Lb bell, it will always rest on your forearm in the exact same place. This ensures that your technique stays consistent regardless of weight. Traditional cast iron kettlebells get larger as they get heavier, and each size rests in a slightly different place in the rack position.

Due to the fact that Pro Grade kettlebells are made from steel, and not cast iron, they are more durable. This is not to say that our cast iron kettlebells will fall apart, it just means that steel is stronger than cast iron and therefore more durable. They are virtually indestructible, and offer tremendous value.

Pro Grade handles are slightly slimmer than with traditional cast iron kettlebells. The handles are specifically designed to prevent lateral slipping and minimize fatigue with high repetition sets.

Pro Grade Competition Kettlebells look "fat" compared to cast iron bells. They have a larger mass in the ball of the bell, imparting different, and many think, better ballistic properties due to this larger center mass.



Being Late

Coming in late to class....
Well we all know is not taken very kindly.
In fact it is not only noticed but is usually criticized in front of everyone.

Reason for such harsh reprimand:
1. CrossFit is a 1 hour "structured" class
2. Late comers distract
3. Athletes are not warmed up properly for CrossFit
4. Instruction is missed
5. Team WOD's are affected

With the exception of Lou, Andres and Tanvir who have tried very very hard and we acknowledge their commitment to keep trying.
We have forgiven them and have accepted them.

ALL others are expected to be on time and be ready to go on the hour. If you are more then 10minutes late you really need to wait for the next class...

Let ‘Er Rip!

Last Saturday, I ripped a callus open on my hand for the first time, during an intense WOD, that required a large amount of pull-ups. For most, this happens numerous times, and there is little thought about what to do to best help it heal. It


becomes second nature, but for me this was a first time experience.  I was delighted at first, feeling like I was finally a part of the ripped callus club, however, as the days went on that little ripped callus became quite annoying and painful.

Joy is a big proponent of using salt on the ripped calluses, letting them air out during the day, and covering them up at night while you sleep. My best friend Jen, who is a CrossFit Box affiliate with her fiance John, keeps a pumice stone in her shower and scrapes her calluses while they are moist. I tried both of these techniques, and less than a week later my hand is almost back to normal.

This got me to wondering what some other tricks and tips are for both preventing and caring for calluses and ripped up hands. What are some tips of how to tape your hand for a WOD if your calluses are ripped open? Here is a great article from tabatatimes.com:


Please comment with your own suggestions and tips on here or under the post on our Facebook Page and check back here as I update the article with the suggestions from our members.



50 ways to get better at CrossFit

Courtesy of agymlife.com

50 Ways To Get Better At CrossFit

1. Gear up. Get oly shoes, some inov-8s or nano’s, a speed rope, some wrist wraps, and some good workout clothes

2. Lift heavy weights regularly. Don’t just stay in comfortable 70% zones. Push your limit…which leads perfectly to 3…

3. Use a spotter and FAIL. If you aren’t missing reps you aren’t training hard enough. Period.

use a spotter 50 Ways To Get Better At CrossFit 4. Work mobility ALOT. Before, After, During

5. Take your training seriously. Always strive to become better.

6. Don’t take your training too seriously. Give yourself a break.

7. Train with others. It’s just better.

8. Show up no matter what. If you aren’t in the mood here’s what you do: 1. walk to your car and drive to the Box. 2. Figure the rest out later.

9. Try to fast before you train. ‘Needing’ to eat before, during, or after training is bulshit hype pushed on us from the bodybuilding/supplement industry. When you switch your metabolism over to training without food you will PR more often and feel awesome in general. You’ll want to send me a thank you card…you’re welcome.

10. Don’t throw your barbell or any other equipment. It’s just douchey.

11. Warm-up ALOT. Make sure you focus your warm-ups and always practice proper dynamic warm-ups before you train. This will improve your results and prevent injury.

12. Motivate other athletes. To receive you must give.

13. Practice handstands often. You have to get upside down if you ever want to improve them.

14. For the ladies: have someone spot your ankles as you perform strict pull-ups (push off the spotters hands to assist reps and go for failure). This is the best way to develop the dead hang pull-up that I have found.

get better at crossfit ladies 50 Ways To Get Better At CrossFit

15. Don’t cherry pick your WOD’s or days. Show up those days that make you want to hide. That is a mega sign you should be coming those days (weaknesses HeLLo).

16. Train your weaknesses. Really try to destroy them..this is the only real way to become a better athlete in my professional opinion.

17. Utilize your coach’s before and after class. They love to talk training, food, and lifestyle so ask them questions and then shut up and listen. You will learn a LOT.

18. Ask other CrossFitter’s for tips and tricks. We are all on different paths in this journey and have learned different things along the way. You never know who you can learn from.

19. Buy a jump rope and size it to you. Then never leave it at the gym.

20. Practice double-unders every day

21. Do a few strict pull-ups every day

22. Do a few one-arm push-ups every day

23. Meditate 5 minutes every day. This can improve your entire life (and CrossFit)

24. Practice your Olympic weightlifting every day with a dowel and empty barbell. The gains you will make doing this are insane.

25. If there is an exercise you are not good at do the following: perform 3 sets of 10 as part of your warm-up every day.

26. Work on heavy, light, and moderate weighted squats every week. Doing lots of reps will produce big gains for male and females. Squats are king.

27. Practice jumping in all modalities. Over, under, on top of, sideways, backwards, long, short, high.

28. Make sure you have a very good rack position. The barbell should be completely supported by your shoulders and not your hands.

29. Train planks often. And I really mean train them. The results from these come 30 seconds after your arms start shaking. You need some mental toughness for these.

30. Learn to bounce out of the bottom of a squat. For those that have tight hips this can be difficult and that is why you should practice often with a dowel and barbell.

31. Do pistols at least once a week (more the better).

32. Make sure to hit all the major lifts at least once a week. Squat, Deadlift, Press, Bench, Snatch, Clean, Jerk

33. Have a recovery plan: hot/cold water, massage, foam rolling, nutrition, ice, Epsom salt

34. Get your family involved. Who cares if you come off annoying at first. They are your family and you don’t want to bury them do you? If you really love your family you should give a shit if they are killing themselves with shitty food and bad lifestyle habits. Start working on them NOW.

35. Do shoulder dislocates with a dowel every workout. Don’t force them. Move smoothly.

36. Turn the wrists out at the bottom of the muscle-up. This will ensure you reach full extension of the elbows, lats, and shoulders.

become a better crossfitter 50 Ways To Get Better At CrossFit

37. Do lots of strict dips and negative holds on the rings.

38. Incorporate strongman work into your program. Sled work and the prowler can do amazing things. Walk with a sled attached to the hips as recommended by Louie Simmons

39. Practice heavy farmer carries.

40. Throw things. We’ve been throwing spears and javelins for thousands of years.

41. Wake up to 20 push-ups every morning.

42. Do 30 air squats and 20 push-ups after every meal. No really..this is a awesome recommendation from Tim Ferris in the The 4-Hour Body and I use it all the time. It’s even better after big meals.

43. Walk after every meal. This improves digestion, prevents fat gain, and makes you feel less bloated and lethargic.

44. Do travel or home WOD’s if you can’t make it to the gym. This helps and a travel WOD card.

45. Practice L-sits often. Same with frog stands. These basic gymnastic skills are easy and low-stress movements that can help you become fitter.

46. Listen to your coaches! They see what you don’t see and they know CrossFit.

listen to your crossfit coach 50 Ways To Get Better At CrossFit

47. Work on your lifestyle and nutrition. Here are some resources: Cooking Guide, The Paleo Diet, MarksDailyApple

48. Take REST days. I know it’s an insane concept but you CAN’T train every day. CrossFit is very demanding and if you want to live a long life you better realize that your body needs a balance.

49. Take a REST week every couple months. This has done wonders for a lot of my athelte’s.

50. The best thing you can do when training CrossFit is LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. Learn when you can push past your red-line and when you need to back off. Learn when you need to rest and when you can still train. Learn what your body responds to and what it doesn’t. Then you can develop a plan that works for you. Everyone is different and has different capacities, never forget this.

Success Board

ronDon't forget to put up your success. It can be anything.

Tanvir made it on time.
Brian didn't get yelled at.
Andres listened in class.

OR even better.... how about Tony and Ron doing WOD's with NO BANDS
both doing 100+ pull ups last week for the first time.
I did my first squat clean WOD using 105#
Karli said YES!
While all three teams at Mayhem did awesome!! Great job!
Alan is doing the Paleo cleanse "almost" caffeine free!
Denisa hasn't killed anyone on her cleanse.

These are ALL great accomplishments and you should be proud!
WRITE THEM UP ON THE BOARD! We want to hear about them.