a kettlebell training log, and
a launch pad for aberrant missives

Sunday, April 6, 2008


Genuflect. Let us genuflect. If you follow the ETK Program Minimum, chances are you're already doing it. You just may not have a poetic way to describe it.

I first encountered this word in the RKC instructor manual, which I received this February in San Jose, on my birthday, no less. It's a big word, I assure you, for the simple reason that I didn't know it, I who knew all my SAT words and kicked everyone's asses in the scoring department. Ah, but that was two decades ago. Now, I see this word "genuflect" next to a picture of the great Dr. Mark Cheng manipulating a kettlebell. What the heck?! My ignorance had been exposed. But there's a way out of this. I rationalized thus: Why say scapula when you can say shoulder blades? Do my clients really need to know that coccyx = tailbone? I concluded thus: Lay people don't need to genuflect. If they want to see a vision of the Virgin Mary, they can just do one hundred Turkish Get-ups.

But I was tormented. I needed a precise definition for the word. My intellectual life was hanging in the balance. Comrades, please nail it down for me.

What is genuflection? Pick one.

a) Reflection of sunlight away from abdominal blubber via nano-tech fabric.
b) A position for oral sex as described in the Kama Sutra.
c) An outpouring of subconscious thoughts following an overdose of Russian truth serum, a.k.a. vodka.
d) A position commonly assumed when presenting expensive rocks, as in a marriage proposal, or when placating a spouse after a crater-sized kettlebell mishap.
e) Forward bends conducted in a weightless condition such as aboard the ISS or on the moon.

It took me more than six weeks, but my wounded pride finally got the better of me, and I looked it up. According to the Marriam-Webster Online Dictionary, genuflect means:

a) To bend the knee; to touch the knee to the floor or ground especially in worship.
b) To be servilely obedient or respectful.
(etymology: from Latin genu knee + flectere to bend)

So there you have it. The word is most often used in the context of Christian worship and Catholic rites, so no wonder I didn't know it. Even my mother is convinced I am headed straight to hell. But I do protest! I genuflect prayerfully, lest disaster befalls my head, every time I get to Step 8 of the Turkish Get-up. As Dr. Cheng demonstrates, this is where you have one knee on the ground, readying to stand. So next time when you're at Step 8, take a moment to contemplate and connect with that spiritual force of your life, whether it's the Holy Virgin or the other, almost-like-a-virgin, Madonna (& Malawi Child). When you're suffering under 32 kg of martyrdom in genuflection, meditate upon the Holy Grail of kettlebell lifting. You just have to know what it is - 100 virgins, or 50,000 snatches ... Okay, let's not go

Comrades, crack the Code.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Snatches (12 kg)
(20 + 20) = 40 snatches

Snatches (8 kg)
(25 + 25 + 15 + 15 + 5 + 5 + 5 + 5) = 100 snatches

MP Ladders (8 kg + 2.5 lb. plate = 20.5 lb.)
5 x (1, 2, 3, 4)

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Snatches (12 kg)
{10 + 10 + 9 + 9 + 8 + 8 +7 +7 + 6 + 6
+ 4 x (5 + 5) + 4 x (4 + 4)
+ 4 x (3 + 3) + 6 x (2 + 2)} = 200 snatches, ~ 11 minutes

I guess that's the USSS Snatch Test. I dropped the kettlebell during the 3 + 3 sequence while switching hands, so I did an extra 3 + 3 to make up for it. So, for real, I did 206 snatches. It was hard but not as exhausting as I had expected. I was so energized after taiko class on Monday night that I wanted to do it again, but it was pretty late and I figured I should eat my dinner before midnight ... Oh well, another day.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If you had asked what Genuflect meant during class I would have raised my hand and told you(and halted your tormenting, though entertaining to read, quest)!. Having attended Catholic school for nine years, the word is pretty much embedded in me.