Thursday, June 26, 2008

Competition with a focus of intramural sports

There are aspects about them that I do not like.  

This is perhaps one of the biggest ways to get injured yes.  Of course professionals exert themselves the most and develop injury.  You are talking elite competition.  

I use softball as an example.  Office workers and untrained individuals with pot bellies and high blood pressure doing this for "fun".  

Another favorite is basketball.  

People like to compete, period.  

What people don't like is to lose.  

If someone knows his level is close to someone elses in a given sport he/she will try most cases.  Its not hard to know.

Without sounding too condescending but I have no other way to describe it, people playing Intramurals can be are sorts of people.  They become very competitive and unhealthily so.  By that I mean mentally.   They don't appreciate hard work that goes into practice to be a professional.  Should they?  I'm not saying that.  

But it would behoove them to research a sport before trying it if they become competitive at any level.  

The reality is that they don't and this is where injury becomes all too real and all too common.  I have heard about people running to first base(all out) and breaking a femur because their body walked very little to get from point A to point B.   I have heard of someone that exerted themselves too much in basketball only to drop dead from a heart attack.  This false impression of being "Active" is when people run into this.   They don't prepare their bodies for a sport.  

Remember that I am talking about an ideal situation that may not coincide with reality.  A lot of coaches may not be available and knowledge is scarce and people in general are not patient.  

There are no standards for strength and conditioning and therefore no standard of fitness when it comes to intramural sports other then who does the best on tryout day.   Some intramurals there are and some there are not.  

Kettlebell sport can be competitive on many levels which reinforces acquiring a coach.  It doesn't have to be VF.   But thats a loaded statement:]  If I wanted to learn Basketball I prefer Michael Jordan(no brainer).  If I wanted to learn about boxing I would learn from Mike Tyson.  If I wanted to golf I would like Tiger Woods to be my coach.  Are these realistic expectations?  Probably not.  

If you can get these people to coach at their given sport then thats amazing.  With kettlebells you can.   

Lifting 32 kgs all the time is professional level.  At this stage one should have all the tools of knowledge with which to use.

24 kgs for Masters is also competitive.  
16 kg  for Juniors.
I'm not keen on 16kg for women ;) but thats ok.   20 kg soon. 

Intramural is something less then listed above.   The high repetitions occur but with less weight and varying times.  The main/key points and philosophy should not be looked over especially for this category.  Most people who just want to be fit still/especially need the basics.  If I wanted to learn basics for a fitness standpoint in  boxing, I would still like an opportunity to ask Mike Tyson.  Or ask Tiger Woods about golf.  I've seen boxing classes for fitness.  Mike Tyson wasn't teaching it.  


Anonymous said...


I fully agree-and not because I am a "coach"-with you about acquiring one to learn good skills. The most basic reason is that a trained coach has the "eye" to pick out all the minute errors, which lead to bigger ones, in technique.

With clients, I tell them from the get go that I will "nit-pick" and the importance of doing so in improving technique. I remember working with you last summer, I was jerking and you pointed out that I broke contact with my iliac crest before I was supposed to. At that point in my training, I definitely would not have known the relevance of it. The point, it took another pair of eyes to bring that to my awareness.

For individual who are considering competing or new to kb lifting, I definitely recommend working with a coach versus trying to learn from books, DVD's, or youtube-which has been recommended online recently :(


Kettlebelllifter said...

Safety is equal to performance. That sometimes can not be the case in some sports. No better technique then the professionals and by professionals, the guys who compete and have to train full time for it.

We are always continuing to learn to improve ourselves but its actually simple to learn it right the first time. ;)