Fake Fitness!

KB Flow group pic jpec for social mediaFake Fitness: Beware!
The other day in class, a long-time training partner of mine and fellow BJJ Black belt asked me how the KB Flow shoot was going. I told him great! He then said, why don’t you hit up some famous BJJ players like Andre Galvao to do your workouts. Then you can post the video. I told him, I have actually thought of that. But, I don’t feel that it is being authentic. I don’t want to fool people by training some famous person once with my programs and parade it all over the internet to get more business. In my opinion, that is fake. Now if someone like Galvao, embraced my programs and truly enjoyed it, that’s a different story. That would be genuine.
Unfortunately, this industry has a lot of fraudulent fitness programs and organizations out there. The salesmanship in this industry is at an all-time high. You have people professing the superiority of kettlebells and look super fit. Yet, they merely use kettlebells as a supplement to barbells, dumbbell, and other fitness equipment. You have organizations that were once all kettlebell oriented, but when the industry shifted and Crossfit became popular, these organizations quickly added body weight and barbell to their curriculum. To me that’s fake.
Since I posted pictures of the recent cast of my new KB Flow shoot, I have been getting a ton of positive feedback. Someone said, “That’s so cool that you are using your own students in the shoot.” My response was, I have always used only my students who actually train regularly in my Kettle-jitsu Bootcamps. The only exception is my addition of KBfit Britt in this shoot. Although she is not a student of mine, she is a legitimate practitioner of all things kettlebell. Her and I have been friends and fans of one another on social media for a long time now.
I honestly would not feel comfortable hiring some random fitness professionals to be in my video shoots. This is what you see in fitness magazines and a lot of workout DVDS. In my opinion that is false advertisement.
I see and hear a some of these fraudulent fitness gurus making the most outrageous claims about their programs. Listen, if someone has to sell you a certain workout program like as if he were selling you a car, then there is a problem. All it should take is for someone to try out a program once to see whether it is for them or not. If you need to convince, or manipulate them further to stick with the program then that is a red flag.
I owned a gym for close to 10 years and I have worked at Legacy Burbank for the last 3 years. At both facilities, I merely offer my Kettle-Jitsu boot camp. It is entirely the client’s choice whether to try it out or not. I’ve never had to force or use my power of influence to make people do my classes.
At 46 years old, I am in the best shape of my life. Kettlebell and body weight are my sole sources of strength and conditioning. The physique I have was attained by using all of the kb workouts that you see me doing on social media and my downloads. The only additions to that is my martial arts training.
So, beware of fraudulent fitness gurus making outrageous claims like, this will heal you, or this will make your BJJ better, I have even heard one ninny say that it reverses the aging process!!! One should merely be able to try out a workout once to be convinced whether it’s for them or not! Free download banner for web

 

Top 5 Knee Mobility Exercises

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Over the last few years I learned the importance of knee mobility exercises; sometimes in life, we have to learn the hard way.

After 30 years of consistent martial arts training and competing, I guess my body was asking for it.

I’ve always been flexible and never had problems with any of my joints, so I suppose I took my flexibility and mobility for granted.

In Tae Kwon Do and Kuk Sool, two martial arts that I trained extensively in, we did joint mobility.

But since I was young, I thought we were just going through the motions; I never realized how important joint mobility was.

Joint Mobility Worked for Dad
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When I first moved to Los Angeles 15 years ago, I was living with my father. My father is a retired professional boxer with over 30 fights under his belt. As most of you know, road work (running) is an integral part of a fighters regimen.

So even in his mid 50’s, running was somewhat of a habit with my father. He would wake up at 5 AM every morning to do his 3-mile run. One day he asked me why his knees were hurting. I asked him if he warmed up.

He said no, so I told him the importance of warming up and gave him a few knee mobility exercises to do. He was amazed at how much it helped him. To this day he still runs and does his warm up/joint mobility.

Thirteen years after the previous story, I found myself in the same situation. I neglected joint mobility and stretching. My left elbow was always throbbing. It particularly hurt when I would do my one of my favorite kettlebell exercises, the high pull.

Needless to say, it was frustrating.

Then I had the pleasure of being invited to my friend John Wolf’s first Evolution Kettlebell Groundwork (EKG) workshop. In this workshop, he covered mobility exercises. That’s when I realized how important it was all over again.

I started working the exercises I learned from John and incorporated them into my warm ups. Low and behold, my elbow pain went away!

The Importance of Knee Mobility Exercises

When performing joint mobility exercises, our body produces a lubricant called synovial fluid. This fluid helps lubricate our joints and can even help regenerate certain parts of the body.

If done on a regular basis, it will help you move freely and pain-free. I do an extensive joint mobility warm up in all of my classes, and my students love it!

The beautiful thing about it is that you do not need a gym to do joint mobility, it can be done anywhere.

Top 5 Knee Mobility Exercises


Our knees are probably one of the most problematic parts of our bodies. Knee issues are one of the most common problems I encounter with my clients.

So, here are my top five joint mobility exercises that I use with my clients. Try them out for yourself, and you will reap the benefits!

Knee Mobility Exercise #1. The Ski Move

I named this exercise the “ski move,” because it resembles the movement used when people ski. It involves a side to side movement that is low impact and gets the knees moving.

Knee Mobility Exercise #2. Tootsie Roll

This movement resembles a dance from the 90’s and involves circling your knees inward. Naming exercises is important so your clients can remember them. I tend to add a bit of humor when I name exercises.

Knee Mobility Exercise #3. Butterfly

Similar to the Tootsie Roll, but involves and outward rotation of the knees. I recommend doing each one for 30 seconds.

Knee Mobility Exercise #4. Egg Beaters

This is an exercise swimmers use to tread water. But, in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, we perform the same movement while lying on our backs. It involves making circular motions while lying on your back with your feet raised.

Knee Mobility Exercise #5. Rocking Chair

I remember when I first did this exercise. It hurt my knees. This told me I needed to work on my knee mobility. Since it hurt, my coach showed me an alternative way.

If you try this exercise and you feel pain in your knee, place your hand on the floor of the same side you roll up on. This will take pressure off. After a while, you should be able to perform the rocking chair with ease and with no hands.

To see these exercises in action, check out my video that goes along with this article. In the meantime, do not neglect your joint mobility! Practicing joint mobility on a regular basis can ensure healthy, pain-free movement!

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Kettlebell Get Ups for BJJ and MMA! Part 1

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Kettlebell Get Ups for MMA and BJJ
Years before I even trained with kettlebells I heard many people professing how good they were for martial arts. But never quite heard any one explaining exactly why they are good for combat sports.
Flash forward to the first time I was taught the Turkish Get Up! First thing that came to my mind was, “Oh wow!” it’s almost identical to what’s called the Technical lift in BJJ! About the only difference is, with the technical lift, on the get up part, instead of putting the knee on the ground, we bypass that and stand straight to our feet.
The Technical lift (aka: standing up in base or the technical stand up) is a mandatory movement that any Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Practitioner or MMA fighter should master. It is the proper way to stand up when someone knocks you down in a street fight or MMA fight. Also, it has a ton of direct applications in BJJ sweeps and transitions.
Other than martial arts applications, the Turkish Get Up has numerous benefits. I honestly feel that it is one of the best full body exercises you can do. I personally prefer to add a press and drive thru my elbow which targets your chest and back. When you do this, it makes the TGU more challenging because you are utilizing more muscles.
Also, I do not favor doing max reps of a TGU with a ton of weight. In the course of a BJJ match, I personally utilize the TGU or Technical lift movement numerous times. So, I make my get up training closer to that. I prefer to train an alternating Turkish get up for 2-minute rounds to get a full body workout. This also makes it highly anaerobic the same as combat sports. You can get a deeper look into my Turkish Get Up training methods in my one-month Ultimate program.
Check out the attached video in which I demonstrate a Turkish get up and a Brazilian get up. The video also demonstrates a few direct applications to BJJ and MMA. Enjoy!

9 Steps to Starting your own Fitness Program

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How to develop your own fitness program
I receive emails and messages daily in regards to kettlebell and body weight training. So, in my next few articles, I will try and cover the questions that I get the most.
“How do I create my own fitness system/program?” is one I was asked since the release of my first DVD Combat Kettlebell systems. Im actually surprised that I haven’t covered this topic already!
First of all, I never sought out to create my own kettlebell and body weight training system. This is the difference between me and all the other people trying to cash in on the fitness industry. I developed Kettle-Jitsu out of necessity.
In an effort to find a fitness program that fit with my gym at the time, one of my business partners suggested we get a kettlebell instructor. I heard great things about them and had no knowledge on how to use them. But I was smart enough to know that in needed some type of instruction to learn to use them properly. So, I agreed and was eager to learn!
My business partner Bill, found an instructor that was certified by the biggest kettlebell instructor at the time. So, we started a once a week kettlebell class with him at my gym SoCal MMA and fitness. We learned the basics. He covered the dead lift, swings, cleans, Turkish get ups and snatches. These were all new to me so, at first, I was really hooked! But, it didn’t really progress from there. It was the kettlebell basics over and over.
As a result, I got bored and so did my students. I really felt there was more kettlebell variety out there. So, I started researching it on the web. To my dismay, I saw very little variety.
Then one day, I was lying in my room, which was in the back of my gym, (yes, I lived in my gym in its early days!), I had an epiphany. I though, I bet you could combine some BJJ movements with the kettlebell. I jumped off my bed, and went into the main mat of my gym and grabbed a kettlebell. I was right! The kettlebell flowed so naturally with the BJJ movements.
So, every morning, I woke up extra early to put myself through a different kettlebell workout. I incorporated all of my innovations into each workout. Then I started integrating it into my boot camps with my students and fighters. They loved it! This is what separates my programs from others. Every single movement and workout I have developed has been a result of direct feedback from my students. Your pupils are your best critics! If your classes are growing and you are retaining students, then you’re doing something right!
Kettle-Jitsu has been 10 years in the making and is continuously evolving.
So, this is how I developed Kettle-jitsu. Not everyone has the convenience of owning their own gym and having students to test their workouts on. So, if you think that developing your own fitness program is something you want to do, then here are a few tips.
1. Master your basics. Online certs like NASM and what not in my opinion are scams. You cant learn fitness from a computer. You need an actual person to show you what and what not to do. So maybe you should do some sort of kettlebell and body weight certification. That way, you have something to build off. Its kind of the same process with martial arts. How do you think there are so many different styles of martial arts? One person becomes proficient in one style. Then he or she, starts to develop their own philosophies and adds their own twist or emphasis to it.
2. After you master your basics and start developing your own workouts, test them on yourself first! Every workout, every exercise I have ever developed, I tried myself before teaching it to my students.
3. Start a small boot camp. Think of it as a test group. Teach your new workouts on them and see how it goes. Ask opinions from your clients. If you have any intention of pursuing a career in fitness, you have to listen to your clients. They pay their hard-earned coin for you to train them. If they like you and the workouts, they will keep coming and are likely to bring friends.
4. Come up with a catchy name for your program. To be honest I’m not even sure how I came up with the name Kettle-Jitsu. But I do know that ever fitness program was fit, this and fit that. So, I didn’t want to jump on the band wagon and come up with an obvious name. Not my style😉
5. Next you should start a business page on Instagram and Facebook. We are in the age of social media and it helps tremendously. Social media is great for various different reasons. It gets your material out there and is a great way to promote your products. Facebook and Instagram now make it fairly easy to run ads all by yourself.
6. Start a website. People need a place where they can go and learn more about you and what you do.
7. If your small boot camp is doing well, you have the options of offering your services at some sort of fitness or martial arts gym. Or, your next option would be to open your own studio. Obviously, the latter is a bit more difficult because of the money factor. But, I know a lot of trainers that earn a living by teaching boot camps at various different gym.
8. Sell your programs online. This means, filming your workouts and putting them up on your website for sale. There are numerous ways to do it. You can do it digitally, or you can do a DVD. I could probably write a small book on this subject! Maybe in another article😉
9. If people are purchasing your programs online and your boot camps are doing well, people may ask you how to get certified in your methods. I never thought in a million years I would be doing a kettlebell DVD and certifying people. But after I released Combat Kettlebell Systems, I started receiving emails asking how to get certified in the CKS system. That’s how it

Farwell to a rock God

12901325_10209068680223698_188215213945284706_oFarewell to a rock God
Thursday, May 18, I woke up about 6am. Tuesday and Thursdays are days I get to sleep in. But since my body is so used to teaching 530am boot camps, I still wake up early. So, I usually wake up and realize that I can sleep in, then go back to sleep. This time, I checked the notifications on Facebook and saw that an old friend tagged me in a post. I was still half a sleep so I didn’t even read the post and fell back to sleep.
I woke up a couple of hours later and checked Facebook and the first thing that popped up in the feed was Chris Cornell dead at 52. Then It donned on me why that old friend tagged me in his post! I was the one that introduced him to Soundgarden (Chris Cornell’s band).
I couldn’t believe it. Of all the brooding Seattle grunge gods, he always seemed like he had it together. Plus, he was at such a high point in his career that it didn’t make sense.
Within the last few years the music industry has lost a lot of icons. Scott Weiland, David Bowie, Lemmy Kilmeister and Prince. All of which I loved. But Chris was my man. There is no other musician that I held on a higher pedestal.
I was first exposed to Chris Cornell and Soundgarden in 1988. I was 16 years old and living in Belgium. My father was in the military so we moved around quite a bit. At that time, Guns n’ Roses were my favorite band. But I was always looking for the next big thing. At that time, there was no internet. I kept up on the music scene through Rock and Roll publications like Circus magazine.
I read all of the articles in Circus mag and would get tips from the album reviews. There was a review for Soundgarden’s album Ultra Mega Ok in one. Their name intrigued me right away. They gave it a really good review and raved about them. So, I looked for it at the Post Exchange. The PX was our equivalent of Target on the military base we were living on. Problem is, they didn’t get those obscure bands on indie labels. They only got what was popular at the time.
I few weekends later, my family took a trip to Amsterdam. A-Dam as we called it, was only a couple of hours away from Belgium. So, we used to frequent trips there.
We were walking around and I noticed a record shop. So, I ran in there to see if I could find it. They had it! I bought Ultra Mega Ok on vinyl. I could barely contain myself on the drive home.
I immediately ran in the house and put the album in the record player. My ears were not prepared for what I was about to listen! I have never heard anything like that before. It was Grunge before that term had even been coined! It was alternative, mixed with metal, blues, punk and God knows what else. It was different and I loved it! Cornell’s voice blew me away. soundgarden-sst
A few years later we were stationed in Wurzburg Germany. At that time Soundgarden had released another album called Louder than Love. My love for the band grew stronger. I found out that they were playing in Frankfurt which was only an hour or so away! I begged my parents to let me go. They agreed to take me. I even brought my younger brother and his friend Andrew with me. Neither of them even knew who Soundgarden was. They just took my word for it that they were the shit!
So, my parents dropped us off at the Batchnap club where they were playing. It was a very small venue. I’m not even sure if a 100 people could fit in there. All I know is that we were early and were got up front center stage! Standing room only. Chris Cornell was literally singing a foot away from me! Shirtless, long curly locks head banging, Chris Cornell blew everyone in that place away with his vocal range! To this day it is still the best concert I have ever been to.
Afterwards while waiting for my parents to pick us up. We noticed the whole band was just kicking it outside of the club! We were like, “holy shit, isn’t that Soundgarden?” So, we walked up and had a chat with them. They autographed their song list and were super cool. My brother and friend became a fan for life after that.
That friend, was Andrew. The one who tagged me on Facebook the day of Cornell’s death.Sound garded loud love
Again, through magazines, I learned of a project with Chris Cornell and members of Pearl Jam called Temple of the dog. This time I found the album on the economy in Germany. I played it and it was nothing like Soundgarden. At the time Pearl Jam wasn’t even a name. To be honest the album didn’t even resonate with me. I guess I was expecting a heavier vibe on the album. But it was the exact opposite. It was slow, bluesy, melodic and kind of dark. But since I was such a huge fan of Cornell’s, I had to give it another listen. With each listen I started to realize how genius the album was. It was beautiful. Temple of the dog was a tribute to their late friend and singer of Mother Love Bone, Andrew Wood.
To this day, Temple of the Dog is one of my top 5 albums of all time.
A few years later, they released Badmotorfinger. It was their breakthrough album. Their single Outshined had a steady rotation on MTV. At that time, I was playing guitar a lot. I’ve actually been playing on and off since I was 10. I had purchased a drum kit and I kept it in my friends Ryan and Mike’s house that they were renting. It was a big house that often turned into a spot for afterhours parties. They had introduced me to their new roommate Scott who was a drummer in a local band Rear View Mirror. We eventually became friends as well. I told him that I play and we should jam sometime. He said cool. What do you want to play? I said have you heard of Soundgarden. He said he had heard them and what particular song I wanted to play. I chose “Outshined”. I could play it on guitar from start to finish with no problem. He said that he would need to listen to it so he could play it.
I put the album in and played the song. He listened to like 10 seconds of it and was like, ok I got it. I was like, don’t you want to listen to the rest of it? He said, no I got it. I thought to myself, there is no way he could play that song after only listening to 10 seconds of it. I mean, Soundgarden is known for having odd time signatures in their music. Not the easiest to play for any musician.
So, we geared up. Scott and I played outshined perfectly! I could not believe that Scott could play like that. It was the first time I had ever played with a drummer of that caliber! It felt so amazing!
I continued to follow Chris Cornell throughout his entire career. He was the only artist that if he released and album, I would immediately buy it without hesitation.
A couple of years ago. I was on my way to Rome to compete and teach. I had a layover in Sweden. So here I am walking around the Swedish airport and Chris Cornell walks right passed me! I turned around and spoke his name. He turned around and said “hey man” with a smile on his face and started walking toward me! I was like, “OMG!” I shook his hand and for the first time in my life, I was at a loss for words. He was larger than life and towered over me! I stuttered words out of my mouth and hoped that he would understand. I felt like a little kid all over again. Maybe it was meant to be.
I don’t want to bore everyone with my countless stories of Chris Cornell. I don’t even know why I’m writing this. I guess maybe I feel I owe him this much for giving me so much. He was a musical genius. He could sing acapella and blow you away. Just check out “all night thing.” He could serenade you with just an acoustic guitar. Check out “Seasons.” His lyrics read like poetry. Just check out like a stone.
I’ve been listening to his music nonstop since his death. He did talk about death a lot. I thought maybe it was because some of his close friends like Andrew Wood and Kurt Cobain had died. Maybe he was fascinated by death.
I had no idea he suffered from depression. I lost my own father to depression. It’s a horrible disease.
Let this be a reminder to all of us, that life is short. I’ve lost more people close to me than you can imagine. Why do you think I do what I do? I’m living the life I want and doing what I love. I may not be rich. But I am living a fulfilled life.
In the song “Like a Stone”, Cornell’s lyrics read, in your house, I long to be, room by room, patiently. I’ll wait for you there. Like a stone. I’ll wait for you there. Alone. I read an article, where the bassist of Audioslave, asked Cornell what he was talking about in the song. What was he waiting for? Cornell turned to him and replied, “I’m waiting on death.”
Just like that, the greatest musician my ears have ever heard is gone. A bonified rock God laid to rest. “I, I never wanted, to write these words down for you. With pages of phrases, of things we will never do. So, blow out the candle and I lay you to bed. Since you can’t say to me now, how the dogs broke your bone, there is just one thing left to be said. Say hello to heaven.”
Farwell to you Chris. I feel like I lost a friend. I hope you look down and see all of these famous bands playing tribute to you. We will always love you. Your music will live for eternity! Thank you☹

7 Reasons to get Certified

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7 Reasons why you should get Certified!
With my Kettle-Jitsu Coach Certification coming up, people are asking numerous questions about it. So why would it be in your best interest to attend and invest in this event. Here are seven reasons why.
1. To attain a greater knowledge of kettlebell and body weight training. For fitness trainers looking to add more tools to your arsenal, Kettlebell and body weight are a must! These 2 training tools are becoming extremely popular! Don’t be left behind!
2. Fitness challenge! Since this is a grueling 2-day event with approximately 16 hours of KB, it is a test of will! Some people look to events like the spartan race or tough mudder. This would be an equivalent.
3. To attain rank. This is a level 1 certification. I look at it as an equivalent of attaining rank in a Brazilian Jiu JItsu or any other martial art. The level 1 cert in Kettle-Jitsu is like earning a blue belt in BJJ.
4. Make fitness your profession. If you have a passion for fitness, sometimes it leads to you wanting to make a living from teaching it. The Kettle-Jitsu Coach cert is a comprehensive fitness course that is geared to prepare you for teaching group classes and one on one sessions. Instead of focusing only on the exercises themselves, The KJC course focuses on proven protocols, routines and exercises so that you may instantly implement them into your training arsenal.
5. Learn to teach boot camps! Teaching large group classes is no easy task! There is a method to the madness. Before teaching a boot camp, one must have a solid foundation in some sort of fitness program. The KJC course prepares you for this and goes even deeper!
6. To add appeal to your gym. Maybe you own a BJJ or MMA gym. If you only offer one discipline at your gym, you are selling yourself short! Adding a fitness boot camp to your BJJ/MMA gym will attract a whole different demographic. Adding more classes equals more $$$! Maybe you own a CrossFit or fitness gym. The same principle applies. Before you invest your hard-earned money. Most of the people administering kettlebell certifications do not own gyms or teach boot camps regularly. So basically, they teach from theory only. If you follow Kettlejitsu on social media, you will see many videos of large group classes. In this course, Joey teaches from 10 years of teaching KB on a regular every day basis.
7. Invest in your health! Taking this course will not only give you a better understanding of kettlebell and body weight training, but It also teaches you to be healthier in general. This course also teaches mobility to prepare your body for workouts and promote healthier joints. Remember, exercise is an easy way to prevent the risk of diseases. The Kettle-Jitsu Coach Cert is geared towards longevity.

Kettlebell Workout for MMA/BJJ and Fitness using Nontraditional Exercises

kb kings article 3Kettlebell Workout using nontraditional exercises
The Kettlebell is the most diverse training tool in existence in my opinion. I always tell people the only limit is your imagination when it comes to kettlebell training. When I started my KB training close to 10 years ago, I was really excited about these new movements that I was learning. I had never done a kettlebell swing, snatch or Turkish Get Up before then. But to my dismay, after learning the KB basics, the exercises did not expand past that. I wanted more. I researched KB training and could not find anything other than the same exercises rehashed over and over. Then one day, when I was living in my gym. A light bulb popped up in my head. I thought to myself, I bet I could incorporate KB with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. So, I jumped on the mat, grabbed a kettlebell and the first move I worked on is the rocking chair! That was the beginnings of Kettlejitsu. Since then, I have continuously developed a lot of other nontraditional exercises and workouts using Kettlebell.
In my previous 2 articles that I have written for the Kettlebell Kings Blog, I used kettlebell flows using more or less traditional exercises. In this one we will be using mostly sports specific MMA/BJJ inspired exercises. Keep in mind, that just because these exercises are influenced by Martial Arts, does not mean that they are inclusive to combat athletes. Anyone can enjoy these exercises. But they are a bit advanced so be sure to have your KB basics down. In this workout, we will be using what I call Anaerobic Pyramid Conditioning (APC). This means it’s a series of movements combined to create an anaerobic breathing effect which is what you will experience if you were in an MMA or BJJ fight. These exercises are combined in what I call a pyramid. So we will perform 5 reps of each exercise, 10 reps and then back down to 5 to complete the pyramid. This is the protocol that I focus on in my new KB Strength and Conditioning download. Let me break down the exercises for you.
1. The KB rocking chair to a press. Like I said this is the first exercise that I developed. This was taught to me by my BJJ Master Roger Machado. It is a movement found in a lot of different BJJ techniques and transitions. It can be performed using body weight only or with KB. Excellent movement for hip/ knee mobility and core strength. By adding a kettlebell and a press, you are incorporating multiple muscles at once. You will be working your upper chest, biceps, triceps, shoulders and your core simultaneously. Plus, you will feel like a ninja afterwards!
2. Deck squats. These are like squats on steroids. By rolling from your back all the way to your feet, you incorporate a lot of different muscles. Particularly, your core. There is a lot of getting up off your back to your feet in MMA and BJJ so this one helps tremendously.
3. Corner to corner rows. In BJJ we do a lot of pulling from this position. So, I feel it’s important to incorporate a lot of different row variations in my workouts.
4. The fighters figure 8. This was also one of the first exercises I developed when embarking on my Kettlejitsu journey. I wanted to incorporate punching to the best of my ability. This one mimics the punching movement of a hooking type punch. It also addresses pivoting and torque. You will feel this exercise in your upper body and your core simultaneously.
So please keep in mind. Before getting to the main workout, you must warm up first! The way I teach, that means plenty of body weight first. Then, we practice each individual kettlebell exercise for 30 second intervals with a 10 second rest. Once you drill each exercise for several rounds, then you can wrap it up with the final kettlebell pyramid.
-rocking chair 5x
-deck squats 5x
-corner to corner rows 5x
-fighters figure 8 5x
-burpees 5x
Repeat each exercise for 10 repetitions then back down to 5 to complete the pyramid.
Check out the video include in this article to get a better idea of the movements in this workout. I also include some footage of me using this workout with my Kettlejitsu boot camp at Legacy Los Angeles. Have fun and train safe!

Variety: The importance of it for Trainers!

focusVariety: The Importance of it for Trainers and Instructors!
When first opened my gym, SoCal MMA 10 years ago, I had 2 black belts, boxing experienced and I was a veteran of professional MMA. Plus, as a kid, I religiously followed body building. So, I felt I had a pretty good fitness repertoire. At SoCal, I taught all of the classes in the beginning. I taught an MMA class, BJJ and a female boot camp class. In all of those classes I utilized workouts that included exercises and movements from all of the arts I trained in. Including animal style movements that have existed in BJJ forever. After a couple of months, my very first female student, Lety, turned to me and said, “Can we do something different? We did this the other day.” I was in shock! But this is what you deal with when you have clients that pay a monthly fee to train at your gym. You have to be attentive towards their needs. This is what caused me to start researching other fitness programs. In an attempt to add variety and attract clients, one of my business partners suggested hiring a kettlebell trainer. I was for it! I knew very little about kettlebells. But I knew enough to know that I needed instruction with them. My partner did the research and found a certified Russian kettlebell trainer to teach once a week at my gym. Since kettlebell training was new to everyone, we enjoyed it. He introduced to us the kettlebell standards, swings, snatches, goblet squats, dead lifts and the Turkish get up. Since these were new exercises, in the beginning, they were exciting and fun. But since the instructor had the traditional Russian kettlebell mindset that you only those few exercises, our clients and myself became bored and uninspired. I was frustrated because I really enjoyed the kettlebell stuff, but I yearned for more. So, I started researching other kettlebell organizations. To my dismay, there was little variety available. This forced me to start innovating my kettlebell and body weight program. I felt every kettlebell workout lacked full body movements. They were more like core and leg workouts. So, I started adding more exercises to hit more muscle groups. I realized how versatile kettlebells and body weight were! I incorporated movements from BJJ and other arts which gave birth to my Kettlejitsu program.
Kettlebell and body weight add more variety than any other 2 training tools in my opinion. I started teaching my new methods to my classes and they loved it! My clients became content and consistent and classes grew. Since then I have maintained my Kettlejitsu boot camps for close to 10 years now. It was also key in helping earn a living from doing what I love to do. Your clients will appreciate variety. If you teach the same thing over and over, I guarantee you it will be difficult to retain students. You have to remember when someone is paying you their hard-earned coin to train with you, you owe it to them to give the best possible training available. This is why I am constantly evolving and learning. I watch and study. I learn from everywhere. I even learn from my students! The key to innovation is to keep an open mind.
These concepts can be applied to martial arts as well. Can you imagine a Martial Arts instructor that only taught 10 moves? It would be pretty boring. One of the main keys to client retention is variety. Have you ever heard the saying, “variety is the spice of life?” I truly believe that! Stay on your toes, be attentive towards your students and add variety to your workouts on the daily. Use these concepts if you have intention on making a living as a trainer! Check out this video that displays some of the variety in my Kettlejitsu programs. Enjoy!

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H2H Intermediate Kettlebell Flow

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H2H Intermediate Kettlebell Flow
This is part 2 of my 3 articles on kettlebell training for combat sports exclusively for my sponsors the Kettlebell kings. In this article, we are covering what I call an H2H or hand to hand kettlebell flow. This particular flow is for intermediate level KB practitioners for 2 reasons. 1. It involves the overhead squat and high pull which require a bit of practice. 2. H2H means we will be passing the kettlebell from our left hand to right hand for the duration of this flow. This requires focus, timing and coordination.
This kettlebell flow contains one of my favorite kettlebell exercises, the high pull. When I was first taught this exercise, I immediately thought to myself “this is like throwing a punch.” I immediately attributed it to a punch we call a overhand right in MMA or Boxing. But to my dismay, we only worked it a few times. Most traditional kettlebell trainers teach the high pull as a precursor to the snatch. Which for a lot of people, is the be all and end all of kettlebell training. Although I do enjoy snatches, I feel the high pull is equally important. Maybe even more so. Reason being, if you work the high pull the way I do, then your hinging, pushing and pulling all in one explosive movement. That means your working your core, chest, back, shoulders biceps, triceps and forearm at once. I am including a video tutorial of how I do a high pull. So check it out to see what im talking about. High pulls are also help with hand speed and punching power. Its like throwing punches with a kettlebell! Try shadow boxing after a few sets of high pulls and see how fast your hands are!
In the previous article I talked about the many attributes needed in combat sports and how kettlebell flows help. One I didn’t touch on is focus. Your mind has to be razor sharp in the ring or cage. Even when you are in the later rounds and you are exhausted you have to have the ability to keep your composure and focus. One mental lapse and it can cause you the fight. Kettlebell flows address this issue. After a few rounds of this flow you will tire and it will increasingly get difficult to keep the flow consistent. It forces you to focus.
Here is the workout. We will keep the protocol the same as the workout in the previous article. In all of my workouts protocol is as follows:
1. mobility and core warm up
2. Ab pyramid (abdominal work)
3. B.I.T. Body weight interval training
4. C.I.T. Compound body weight training.
5. K.I.T. Kettlebell interval training
6. Kettlebell circuit
The kettlebell circuit is as follows: 2-minute round. 1 minute kettlebell flow, 30 seconds of rows and 30 seconds of burpees. I would suggest practicing each exercise that makes up the flow individually. This is what I call K.I.T. or kettlebell interval training. I usually do 30 seconds of work with a 10 second break between each set. Example: 30 seconds of overhead squats on the left 30 seconds of overhead squats on the right, 30 seconds high pulls on the left and so forth. Then try the flow using a lighter bell until you get used to the sequence. You can upgrade the weight of your bell for however you see fit.
There you have it! Intermediate H2H Kettlebell flow for combat sports and fitness! Stay tuned for part 3 of this series!

How to do a basic Kettlebell Flow

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How to do a Kettlebell Flow
Close to 10 years ago, I went to go purchase some kettlebells from an old company called My Mad Methods. MMM was located inside of a gym called MBody Strength owned by Marcus Martinez and Mark de Grasse. I met Mark while I was there and asked him if he would take a look at a specific kettlebell program that I had been developing with my students at my former gym SoCal MMA. Mark agreed to. So I proceeded to show some of the kettlebell movements and flows I had developed and his eyes lit up! He said, “would you mind if I filmed these.” I agreed. Within a few minutes Mark looked at me and said, “we need to do a DVD.” I was blown away! I just wanted to see what he thought of the exercises I had developed. I wasn’t expecting to land a DVD deal! This led to his company My Mad Methods producing my first 2 DVDs. Combat Kettlebell Systems was the first. The CKS DVD was the first of its kind to showcase newly developed kettlebell movements and principles taken directly from MMA and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. The DVD sold in 30 countries worldwide. I released another DVD dedicated to body weight training called Shadow Jitsu. Then, MMM produced other DVDs from John Wolf and Mark de Grasse. My Mad Methods created such a buzz that it gained the attention of a little nutritional supplement company called Onnit. They purchased MMM (along with my DVDs and articles) and brought in Mark de Grasse to create the Onnit Academy.12592561_883757901723048_1301335978893047852_n-1above left to right, Mark de Grasse, John wolf and myself
In the beginning nobody had seen movement added to kettlebell training. Nobody had seen kettlebell flows and it wasn’t 100% accepted in the kettlebell community. Now, Instagram and other social media have people taking stabs at kettlebell flows and what not. So called kettlebell experts are now crawling out of the wood work with kb workouts for BJJ and MMA. But, there is a huge difference between me and them. Most of these guys just create workouts so that they can upload it to YouTube and I.G. to get hits. These people have never been in the cage while somebody has you on the ground dropping elbows on your face. These people have never had their hand raised in victory in front of thousands of people.king-of-the-cagemedal-chaser Any workout that I post, have been used by me and my students for the last 10 years. I trained a team of MMA/BJJ athletes and regular everyday people at my old gym and now at Legacy BJJ Burbank for close to a decade. These aren’t just workouts I come up with in my living room and throw up on YouTube. Also keep in mind that my YouTube videos are not made to be actual instructional in nature. They are just mere examples of what I do. There are a lot of details that you may be missing if you do not understand the concepts. So I am proud to announce, that Kettle-Jitsu and kettlebell giants the Kettlebell Kings will be working together to educate people and give everyone a better understanding of Kettlebell training for combat athletes.
This is the first of a 3-part series dedicated to Kettlebell training for BJJ and MMA. Let’s discuss the Kettlebell flow. To understand Fighting, you must know that combat sports are anaerobic in nature. This means its closer to running sprints than to going for a long distance jog. Fighting involves multiple muscles at once. A typical BJJ/MMA match involves, pushing, pulling, core work and leg work. Anaerobic training involves short burst of energy, followed by a brief lull in movement. This is how I like to structure my kettlebell workouts.
I have kettlebell flows broken down in 4 different categories.
1. 2 handed single kettlebell flows
2. 1 handed alternating single kettlebell flows
3. Combo flows mixing 1 and 2 together
4. Double kettlebell flows
The enclosed video is an example of #1 and is my most basic Kettlebell flow. It involves a 2 handed clean. This covers our pulling and leg work, 2 handed overhead press (pushing movement), and a 2 handed swing (hinging, core movement). The protocol I use for this is what I call 2 minute Kettlebell circuit. Perform a 2 handed clean and press twice, 2 handed swing twice and a swing to catch once for one minute straight. Followed by ballistic rows for 30 seconds. Burpees make up the final 30 seconds of the 2-minute circuit. Please keep in mind that in my classes, we always start with body weight and mobility before we get into the kb work. This insures that everyone is thoroughly warmed up. Here is a typical Kettlejitsu class format I use
1. mobility and core warm up
2. Ab pyramid (abdominal work)
3. B.I.T. Body weight interval training
4. C.I.T. Compound body weight training.
5. K.I.T. Kettlebell interval training
6. Kettlebell circuit
I hope this gives a better understanding of how and why I developed kettlebell flows. They are an amazing way to train kettlebells and give you a full body workout, help burn muscle, enhance coordination and focus all at once!
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