Wednesday, November 10, 2010

449 Swings in 30 minutes; TracyStyle.

I have known my wife is a genius for a long time. When she came up with her training methods for high volume swings and snatches I knew it was gold. The changes in her body and the work capacity she achieved was only surpassed by what I saw her students achieve as well with her methods.

Average people doing superhuman work capacities in a very short amount of time.

And yet I've never taken a class from her.


I was scared.

I have been training strength and conditioning for a very very long time and I KNEW exactly what was going on in those classes and KNEW I didn't want that much pain. It helped that up until a few months ago I coudn't do two handed swings without my spine yelling at me so I had an out.

In TracyStyle High Volume Kettlebell Training, the Two Hand swing is the foundation, and rightfully so. I just couldn't do it.

But my corrective work has actually worked and now I can do two hand swings, the power squat of kettlebell ballistics and ya'll should know how much I LOVE and REVERE the power squat.I always HATED that I couldn't squat OR do two handed swings. But I was also being very cautious as I made my foray into the move that is the easiest and the hardest of all kettlebell swings.

So when Tracy asked me to BE in her next swing class DVD, NEXT FREAKING WEEK, I actually didn't know if I could do the workout even with the 16 kg so today's workout became a practice session for her beginners workout class. Man I wasn't that confident.I can train heavy swings, do a ton of work but ask me to do it with restriced rest periods and my knees get weak,lol.
I HATE intervals even though I know how good they are for you.

But if my love wants me in her video it's time to step up and I did.

And let me tell you first hand, this training is no joke.

Tracy put me through her paces wanting to practice the progressions and the workout for the shoot and I needed to actually know if I could survive this.

I did but I have even more respect for what she has invented. Let me say it as clearly as I can: Her methods will change how everyone trains the kettlebell swing. Or at least the smart ones.

I used the 16 kg.

I listened to the instructor.

I matched her pace and flow.

I never did more than 20 reps at a time.

I did 449 reps in 30 minutes and barely noticed it. Thats almost 1000 swings per hour.

That's 16,164 lbs or 538 lbs per minute lifted.

Freaking Crazy.

The pace and speed FORCED me to swing in a much more dynamic and powerful way than I ever have before, especially with such a light weight. I can totally see now how Tracy gets so much work out of her body with this method as the pace and work load necessitate a certain ballistic power just to survive it!

I threw the bell back harder and just popped up. I really activated the stretch reflex of my hips and hams even harder than before just to make it through the reps with the rest interval she gave me.

At the end my legs were jello, which I haven't felt in ages. Crazy.Good.

This is like the first time I did max vo2 training but the difference is, this training is available to everyone because everyone can swing, although not everyone can snatch.

I can't tell you the workout cause it's top secret but I will train this again Saturday and then tape it on Monday, hopefully with the 20 kg.

The Queen of the Kettlebell Swing is onto something.This is going to be a GREAT DVD.


Tracy Reifkind said...

my it any wonder why I love you so much?

Today, 11/10/10, history was made....I, Tracy Reifkind, coached my brilliant husband through a "TracyStyle" KB swing routine.....I will never forget this day. And training in Stones Gym, messy and cramped as it's current state is, was perfect! You blew me away....once again.....

Hey, I've already admitted to being dramatic....why change now?

Mark Reifkind said...

never change my love, never change.

this was a historic moment for me, and us, as you said, in Stones Gym,cramped and messy as it was; the start of it's next incarnation, your training REALLY blew me away.
Before I just knew it intellectually, now I've felt it and it's even more amazing than I even imagined.

Diana said...

To swing under 800 swings for a workout seems like I did nothing! I can't get myself to go lower, just so used to that high volume, it's been engraved into my brain.
Looking forward to the DVD!

Mark Reifkind said...


I could see how this volume could be addicting. the dvd(s) will be amazing. when people can progress through this workout to her advanced beginning workout their work capacity will be incredible.

Tracy Reifkind said...

Diana....and this goes out to anyone that is interested in the definition of "high volume"

High volume swings is NOT about the most amount of reps in the least amount of time. High volume starts with equal work to equal rest....

I routinely do equal work/rest workouts that kick my ass, big time. One does not have to do double, triple, quadruple amount of work to rest. Knowing how to change the intensity, without increasing rep count is a skill on it's own.

Weight and pace, in additon to progressions have everything to do with everything.

Individualizing one's level of conditioning for "high volume", is exzactly that....individualizing.

I, myself, can get caught up in rep count....but knowing how to, progressively, make it "harder".

You and I are the same...."Bring it on!"

guy said...

I have Tracy Reifkind's 1st DVD (excellent by the way), and I will be purchasing this new one. Hmmmm, TracyStyle huh? Could lead to a new Certification training program.
Palo Alto's first ever "TKC"! It would rock!

jockeRKC said...

Have to have this DVD if i dare =) i am not good at doing a lot of swings but i need it to get lean and make my heart stronger.
And whats better that learn from Tracy?

Mark Reifkind said...


TracyStyle certs! now you're talking. Hopefully this will be incorporated into the RKC system and people will learn how to program their high volume swing work that way. Killer stuff.

Mark Reifkind said...


if I can do it you can! what I was amazed at was how much my legs felt this. I was pumped lol!

Stevo said...

Hey Rifs,

Just wanted to let you know that after I saw Tracy's high-volume work, it inspired me to try something I'd never done until yesterday. 1,000 swings in 50 minutes! Hard-style, baby!

Coach Stevo, RKC

Mark Reifkind said...


great blog post man and thanks for the props AND for getting that 1000 reps done. that's no joke especially with the 32 kg for the last 200.

And, to be honest, I WAS surprised that you not only got your snatch test but you did it so well.I remember well your snatch technique when you first came to see me.

Keep it going man, well done.

Stevo said...

Ha! I do too. At that point I'd never even seen a 24kg bell! But doing the Viking Warrior Conditioning every Thursday like you recommended really dialed in the movement and helped me get better every week.

Thanks again, Rif. Your standards as a coach are matched only by your patience.

Mark Reifkind said...


You rock.I'm so impressed you did what I recommended. So few do. You should come down to Girya and snatch with Nick and me some Saturday.