Set Up is the First Rep
Set Up is the First Rep.
Your set up for a lift sets the tone for how the lift will go. e.g. if you have a sloppy clean, you will have a sloppy press, or maybe not even a successful press.
With this, you should always consider your first rep as not the first swing in a set of kettlebell swings, but rather your initial set up before you start the back swing.
When setting up for a kettlebell swing, go through this mental checklist:
- Is your head higher than your shoulders?
- Shoulders higher than your hips?
- Hips higher than your knees?
- Is your spine neutral?
- What is your head position? Is your cervical spine neutral with a natural extension as you “look out onto the horizon”? Or do you look like an open Pez dispenser?
- Is your upper body engaged? Packed shoulders, lats tucked into your back pockets?
- Are you sitting far enough back in your hips so your glutes are loaded like a sling shot ready to take the firing load of the kettlebell into a back swing?
Step by step, a mental checklist for any lift sets you up to have a successful, and safe set.
Just like set up is the first rep, your last rep is not number 5 or 10 in a set, but rather when you place the weight down safely on the ground.
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