Circuits: Progressions & Regressions

I have to apologize to my followers, I’ve been a tad remiss in providing blogs the past few months. I’ve been consumed with my educational projects, which I am certain that you all will enjoy! The Kettlebell Workout Library is available on many online stores (including Dragon Door and mine) and the Fight Kettlebell Fight! book is in editing and we are looking forward to a mid-summer, 2015 release. So, I’ve been busy putting together some products to further enhance your training!

So on to the the subject matter in this blog. Generally, we run a total Bodyweight Class once a week. It’s tough, and we employ different types of circuits. But the students love the challenge of Bodyweight because it’s the perfect augment our Kettlebell Based training.

Our classes last 55 minutes and the test, as a coach, is how to deal with a group of people that have various levels of fitness. We have to challenge the experienced ones and not allow the Newbies to become overwhelmed or injured. This particular workout included our typical Jump Rope for 3 minutes and then we went into Primal Move, some mobility and flexibility. This lasted for 12 minutes. Our next 40 minutes is non-stop training, 8 Movements, 5 Rounds, 50 seconds on and 10 seconds off. The 10 seconds of rest simply allows you time to get to the next station. If we have more than 8 people, we either pair them up with someone of their similar abilities or put a Senior Student with a Newbie. After we finish the 5 Rounds, we we did a cool down and recap for 3 minutes.

There also another consideration, with all of this going on and everyone needs training specific to their goals. As a coach you are faced with “How to accomplish all this?”

The answer is with: Progressions and Regressions.

First I review the exercise set with the progressions and regressions. Give and review several options for the movements that consist of the workout. Take Lunges for instance, I demonstrated the Walking Lunge, Stationary Lunges, Front and Back Lunges, Lunatic Lunges, Renegade Lunges, Cossacks, Air Lunges and Shrimps. There was a full representation of of the rest of the movements depicting the various levels.

This week we did the following:
1) Lunges
2) Handstands
3) Bridges
4) Pull-ups
5) Dips
6) Abs
7) Squats
8) Push-ups

The Progressions and Regressions are very important for several reasons. The Progressions are needed to challenge the experienced students and to give the Newbies something to aspire to. The Regressions are needed for the Newbies to do to build their foundation and also as a first round for the experienced people to warm-up and for something to when their reps of the more challenging exercise begin to falter.

Here’s an example: In this session, we performed 5 rounds of Push-ups. The first round might be the Standard RKC Push-up, round 2 would be Push-ups with the Neuro-Grips. Possibly at round 5, you may not be able to perform the Neuro-Grips for the full 50 seconds, so you finish out the round with some decline push-ups.
Another example would be the Pull-ups. Very few people can do Pull-ups for 5 rounds, 50 seconds at a clip. So if you perform 5 solid Pull-ups or Front Levers (I consider them in the same family), and you still have 20 seconds left, move to the the Plank (Australian) Pull-ups to finish off the round. Employing the Regressions are far superior to performing poor repetitions.

It is important to know and provide options as well as to “keep your eye” on your students. People get very competitive and sometimes require either pushing them to try harder, but more often they need to be advised to use a regression. Eventually, they get the idea, buy into the program and police themselves a little better. Still, keep an eye on them.

Good luck with your training and always test the workouts out on yourself prior to leading a class. Make certain that you are familiar with not only the Progressions, but the Regressions.

Strength and Honor.

Coach Phil