Updated: Jul 10, 2021
10,000 kettlebell swings across 20 days. Over 5 hours of training in total. 340,000kg lifted. Are you up to the challenge?
Swinging isn’t just a seedy pastime for the depraved and/or people who have become bored in their relationship. Swinging, if it involves a kettlebell, is a tremendous exercise that promotes a bewildering array of physiological adaptations. Some of the fitness benefits ascribed to kettlebell swinging include:
Augmented whole-body fitness
Cast iron posterior chain development: lower back, gluteus maximus and hamstring
Serious grip strength
Better aerobic fitness
Improved muscular endurance
Turning our attention from the exercise to the tool itself, kettlebells make for brilliant training equipment because they take up hardly any space, are extremely versatile (I’ve heard it said that there is over 50 different exercises that can be performed with a single bell!) and they are almost indestructible. It’s for these reasons – and more left unmentioned – why they’ve been dubbed an all-in-one gym.
So if you haven’t yet got one, the question you ought to be asking yourself is: Why the hell not? (Need some advice on selecting a bell?)
Ok, now we know that the kettlebell swing is a killer exercise (and that the kettlebell is a piece of training equipment par excellence), it makes damn good sense to undertake this challenge. But first two questions need asking . . . then answering.
What is the 10,000rep kettlebell swing challenge? And which sadist conceived it?
I’ll answer the latter first. Dan John, fitness author, former Olympic athlete and strength and conditioning coach, conceived of this challenge because, in his words, ‘it’s one of the simplest – and maybe the best – home training programs [and] it provides results, challenges you, and, most importantly, doesn’t suck.’
In this gladiatorial event the combatant, if he or she wishes to emerge victorious, must complete 500 swings each day for 20 consecutive days.