It was New York City in the seventies, and I remember Arnold and Sly as the two big screen movie idols who motivated many teenage boys to pump iron. Pumping Iron and the infamous Rocky movies helped take working out, out of the closet, and into mainstream America. By the time I'd hit 18 years of age, I benched, squatted and curled my way into pretty decent shape, but that unfortunately came with a travesty of minor overuse injuries. Thankfully, preparing for a particularly grueling FDNY physical (a trend during the late seventies) forced me to drastically alter my approach to a more functional style of training. Far from a world class runner, I managed a five-minute and 10 second mile time in the test's grand finale, the one-mile run, and squeezed out 18 pull ups in the FDNY academy's final physical.
Over the next twenty-five years or so, I continually searched for that perfect workout, a way to generate intensity, develop strength, speed, and stamina, while encouraging wellness and weight loss. How to quiet those aching joints, but still be fit enough to fight fires?
My initial contact with kettlebell lifting was probably very typical. Turning to the internet for just about everything, I googled my way to what was mostly really good marketing, with some relevant information sprinkled in here and there. Good, but not best. When I first hooked up with the American Kettlebell Club and studied under Valery Fedorenko I found the best information available to me to date. However, I had to have it all explained to me because initially, I still didn't "get it".
That's not something most of us want to hear. Not "getting it" implies a bit of ignorance, but maybe it's more of a closed mind than anything else. When something new comes along (not that there's anything really new about the sport of kettlebell lifting), a snap-judgment can separate you from some very beneficial change.
Making the Change
At 47 I made that change, and eventually I got it. My shoulders, knees, hips, elbows all ached. Too many years, too many reps, combined with 22 years of fighting fires, I assumed to be the culprit. Even though I'd adapted more functionally focused training practices, I still hurt. What I've learned from Coach Fedorenko, personally saved my body, has allowed me to perform at much higher levels with everything and anything I do, and without pain.
Since the opening of AKC Fitness Long Island, my staff and myself have borne witness to this process of people "getting it" in relatively large numbers, sometimes with really patient coaching, but always transforming right before our very eyes. To acquire the best information you possibly can, go to the best expert you can find or afford. Coach Valery Fedorenko is that expert, and at AKC Fitness LI, we dole out the Fedorenko Method and create kettlebell lifting machines, or simply stated, people that get it, and get results. Read some of our recent testimonials.
Posted by Mike Stefano at July 22, 2010