My kettlebell library

There are 4 kettlebell books that I refer to often.

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The Swing by Tracy Reifkind is the one that I’m following right now.  I like her high volume sessions.  I also like that she’s walked the walk.  She’s been obese and she’s not now.  She changed her life.  She changed her habits.  And, she’s been doing it for long enough to know the ins and outs.

Her book not only includes the physical workout portion of change – but she covers nutritional aspects and emotional aspects.  It’s a well rounded book and I highly recommend it.  I think I’ve read it cover to cover at least 3 times in the 2 months I’ve had it – not to mention thumbing through it for support, using the recipes and following the workouts (I’m on #12 today).

Ultimately – she comes across as your friend – or someone you’d like to have as your friend.  She’s ‘common’ in the best sort of way.

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The second book on my shelf is by Lorna Kleidman.  I’ve had this book for a couple years and I’ve followed her 12 week program.  It’s a good program – more in line with a traditional gym workout only using kettlebells.  The pictures and explanations of movements are excellent – especially for those of us that don’t have ready access to trainers (or have gym trainers that are lacking knowledge).

The part of her program that I found weak was the ballistic movements…..there just wasn’t enough swinging in her program to keep me interested.  However – there’s nothing to say you can’t just add them in – which is what I did.  I think I went through her 12 week program 3 times….always losing steam about week 8 or 9.

There was talk of her coming out with a DVD so I keep my eyes open for that but so far….nothing.

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The third book is by Pavel – the one who is typically credited with bringing kettlebells to the USA.  It’s a bit ‘blokie’, if you know what I mean.  The whole “comrade”, macho man business can wear a little thin.  However, there is a wealth of information in this book and each time I pick it up – I learn something new.  He breaks down the moves step by step with amazing diagrams/photos.  If you can’t get to a person to be trained in kettlebell technique – this would certainly be a route to take.

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This last one is a recent addition to my collection and I bought it in the kindle format.  I’ve had it for about 2 weeks and I’ve read it twice already.  Again, her workouts are more in line with typical strength training workouts only using kettle bells.

I think the plus for her book is her encouraging perspective.  I find re-reading the chapters to be very motivational.  I would think mothers especially would relate.  This book also has good instruction and diagrams for those trying to make their kettlebell training work at home.

Her mobility ideas – warm ups and cool downs – are good.  I have incorporated them into my training before I do Tracy’s workouts and I also try to sneak them in while doing other things (like cooking or watching TV).

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