Swings Are The Center Of The Kettlebell Universe

By Todd M. Cambio | February 18, 2017

The ONLY Piece Of Equipment You Absolutely Need!

Kettlebell Swings
There are so many pieces of “equipment” out there, but there is one piece of equipment that is underutilized and so misunderstood!

You guessed it! The kettlebell.

Obviously I love my kettlebells. I really do feel the bell is most people’s missing piece of equipment. The movements you do with kettlebells are full body and engage pretty much all your muscles. The exercises are based off of movement and how to enhance movement so you can gain more mobility, improve your stability and increase your strength. The kettlebell can also be utilized as an incredible corrective exercise tool.

The kettlebell is a very adaptable piece of equipment. You do not need a lot of room to get in a full body workout. You can take it outside, you can use it at home or you can use it at your gym. Heck, you can even travel with your bell! You do not need that many sizes of kettlebells either. You can program your kettlebell workout for strength, hypertrophy, MetCon or cardio.

However, when I talk kettlebells with people, the majority of things I hear are astonishing. Things like:

  1. Kettlebells will hurt my back
  2. Kettlebells are just like dumbbells
  3. Kettlebells are not heavy enough to get me strong
  4. Kettlebells cant be used for cardio
  5. AND my favorite, “I already know how to use them”

Absolutely, the 1st 4 above mentioned items are FALSE!

95% of the time #5 is FALSE! – follow up article on this coming next!  Until then, let’s address #1-4.

Here is why kettlebells are great for back health:

·A hard style kettlebell instructor (such as myself) will teach you how to use the kettlebell to strengthen your glutes. By strengthening your glutes you will protect your back. According to Vladimir Janda MD, people with low back pain have “gluteal amnesia.” By learning some of the basics of how to dead lift, how to squat and how to do a hard style swing; you will wake your glutes up and actually improve your back health.

·Kettlebell training will stretch your hip flexors. Research, like Janda’s, has shown a correlation between tight hip flexors and weak glutes.

·The abdominal bracing techniques and mobility drills used in my kettlebell course is second to none for spinal stability that again is going to protect your spine from injury.

Kettlebells are NOT like dumbbells. They are not shaped the same, they are not weighted the same so therefore they should not be used the same way.

·Kettlebells keep the weight on the outside of the wrist so the weight distribution is much different than that of a dumbbell (a Db’s weight is evenly distributed). Therefore, you really do not want to allow the weight of the bell to externally rotate your shoulders. If you lift kettlebells like dumbbells, you are opening up your shoulders for injury.

·Kettlebells should be lifted with straight neutral wrists and a firm grip to keep tension through out body improving strength and movement patterns. This method also improves joint stability.

This is how I celebrate St Patty's Day!! 44 kg (97 lb.) press x 2! Beast (48 kg) is next! SGF Level 2 six weeks away!! Spartan CT ten weeks away! #precisionfitness #strongfirst #SFG #spartanrace #spartangroupx #spartancoaches #spartantraining #goals

Notice the neutral wrist on this 44 kg (97 lb) press

Kettlebells are not heavy enough??? 

· All I will say is kettlebells go up to 203 lb. that I know of…now hold two of these heavy bells…that is a lot of weight my friends.

· Here is what I consider the average size bell you should be able to do the following movements comfortably with. 24 kg (53 lb) for men and16 kg (35 lb) for women:

o Kettlebell 1-handed swing

o Snatch

o Goblet squat

o Front Squat

o Get Up

o Clean

o Press

o Thruster

o Kettlebell 2-handed swing for a set of 10 – 1/2 your body weight for men and 1/3 your body weight for women.

Kettlebells are incredible for cardio!

As it turns out, the kettlebell must have been way ahead of their time.

· New groundbreaking research sponsored by the American Council on Exercise (ACE) demonstrates that kettlebell training significantly boosts aerobic capacity, while also improving core strength and dynamic balance.

· Dr. John Porcari, head of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse’s Department of Exercise and Sport Science Department saw a 13.8 percent increase in aerobic capacity.

· In all, compared to the control group, those subjects who completed the kettlebell training showed significant improvements in VO2max, leg press, grip strength, dynamic balance and core strength.

· And the most impressive research in my opinion shows that in a kettlebell snatch workout, subjects “were burning 20.2 calories per minute, which is off the charts. That is equivalent to running a 6-mile pace.” (Porcari & Schnettler, 2010)

To see what I mean, check out my 5 min Kb Snatch video from the Tactical Strength Challenge 2014:

This is just the tip of the iceberg on using kettlebells. I teach hard style kettlebells, which I think, is the best overall system because it can be applied to so many other disciplines. Hard Style Kettlebell Training will teach you the precise ways in which kettlebells should be used for developing, maximizing, and maintaining strength!

I would love to see you at one of my kettlebell courses and be able to not just tell you, but show you how much kettlebells can improve your overall fitness level!  If interested, sign up for my next course. You wont regret it!  

March 11th – Exeter, NH

Sign Up HERE: http://www.strongfirst.com/shop/courses/kettlebell-courses/exeter-nh-march-11-2017/ 

This course is for anyone looking to improve his or her skills as a kettlebell instructor, avid kettlebell student or a beginner.

Be Strong,




PS – For those looking for more advanced Single Arm Kettlebell skills, I am hosting a 3-hour workshop in Mystic CT March 3rd.

CLICK HERE to register

More info HERE



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Kettlebell Misconceptions Revealed

By Todd M. Cambio | February 12, 2017

Like many things in life, there are great ways to do things and not so great ways. Kettlebells fall into this category. Here are three common misconceptions I deal with regularly.

#1 misconception: “Kettlebells are bad for my back.”

Absolutely NOT True! Bad form and poor instruction is bad for your back. Kettlebells taught correctly are good for your back. Here is why:

#2 Misconception: “My trainer knows kettlebells”

Not to pick on anybody, but unless you have been to a one day course or a 3-day certification, and “practiced” kettlebells for at least 6 months (after attending a SFG Course or Certification) to hone in your form, you or your trainer do not know kettlebells. Personal trainers do not know kettlebells. CrossFit does not know kettlebells.

Correct form absolutely essential. Glute-contracting, hip-snapping, heel-driving, ab-flexing, high-intensity hardstyle swing form. That will bring you right back to 15-20 minutes workouts that are more effective than an hour of other forms of exercise.

I liken “trying to learn kettlebells on your own” to a kid trying to cut their own hair…it usually doesn’t go well!

#3 Misconception: “I can learn them myself.”

If you are reading a book, watching YouTube or DVD’s on kettlebells, stop now and sign up for a StrongFirst Course or Certification.

Why? You need to know why you are doing certain exercises. Know the purpose. Get deeper into the “how and why” than just trying to mimic what you see on a video or in a book. Have someone actually watch your form and offer hand-ons solutions.

Here is a sample concept we go over:

“Linkage”. The Turkish Get Up is one kettlebell exercise that demonstrates this concept.

The Get Up improves one’s strength in many events by teaching the important skill of “linkage,” while eliminating strength “leakage.” Linkage is when total tension is reached with out letting any tension “Leak” out of your system. If there is leakage, the movement gets sloppy and opens the door for injuries.

What Gray Cook, physical therapist to Navy SEALs and NFL teams, has to say about this one kettlebell movement:

“The Turkish Get-Up is the perfect example of training primitive movement patterns—from rolling over, to kneeling, to standing and reaching. If I were limited to choosing only one exercise to do, it’d be the Turkish Get-Up.”

I would add that these other benefits simply come along for the ride: hip hinging, lunging, glute activation, core recruitment, shoulder health, mobility, stability and more.

“Not a single sport develops our muscular strength and bodies as well as kettlebell athletics,” reported Russian magazine Hercules in 1913.

According to Mark Reifkind, Master SFG, “Most clients’ goals are very simple: weight loss and increases in muscle tone and strength and to NOT get hurt. Nothing provides this more easily, more safely, and more quickly than kettlebell swing training done correctly. From the weakest beginner to the most advanced strength athlete the kettlebell swing, when programmed and trained correctly is perhaps the best tool for almost any job. And if you’re going to do only one exercise, make it a swing.”

Kettlebell swings, Turkish get ups, goblet squats, single leg dead lifts, military press, cleans and snatches are all some of the main exercises that when done correctly are some of the best exercises you can do. Invest in a StrongFirst Course  or a Certification and you will gain skills that last a lifetime and transfer to other modes of exercise.


Todd Cambio



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StrongFirst Kettlebell Course Exeter NH

By Todd M. Cambio | February 11, 2017

StrongFirst Hard Style Kettlebell Training will teach you the precise ways in which kettlebells should be used for developing, maximizing, and maintaining strength!
The kettlebell can be utilized as an incredible corrective exercise tool as well.
In addition to the specific kettlebell skills listed below — and no less important — you will learn many MOVEMENT FUNDAMENTALS:
• “Strength stretching” to take the brakes off your strength, spare your joints, and always be ready to go
• Kettlebell training safety
• Essential joint mobility exercises
• State of the art breathing techniques for strength, endurance, back safety, and stress reduction
• Tension skills for instant strength gains
• “Hip-centric” (McGill) movement, a must for strength and back health.
• “Lat-centric” shoulder mechanics which protect the shoulder while significantly increasing strength
• Single Bell techniques and progressions:
• The Deadlift—the most “functional” exercise
• Single Leg Dead Lift – A powerful drill for strengthening the feet and the ankles and injury proofing the hamstrings
• The Goblet Squat—the squat for the people
• The Swing—the “fat-burning athlete builder”
• The Get-Up—a lesson in moving strong
• The Military Press—a classic test of strength
• A number of foolproof program design tools and sample programs for a variety of training goals
No previous kettlebell experience is required.
Register: https://www.regonline.com/registration/Checkin.aspx?EventID=1902329
Upon completion of this course, you may use a $250 credit towards the 3-day SFG Level 1 Certification (you must use the credit within 9 months from this course date).
This course is NASM approved for continuing education credits. You can submit to other certification bodies for CEU approval.
If you have any questions, please contact Todd M. Cambio at 860-287-3768
Please note this is NOT a certification.
This is a one day users course, that will help you prepare for the certification. The SFG Certifications are 3 days long and have numerous strength and technique standards that must be passed.

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Best Exercise Ever

By Todd M. Cambio | January 9, 2017

Wait! Don’t just skim down to see which exercise I’ve labeled as the best, get the whole story…

I’m often approached and asked to pin down a single exercise as the one that will help lose the most fat and tone the quickest. That’s not an easy question to answer.

You see, I’m very aware of the fact that though an exercise may be perfect for Cindy, it may not be the best choice for Bob—hence my hesitation to label any exercise as the universal best.

That being said, some exercises are definitely better than others. And, yes, there are even a few that I would call the best.

Dead Lift

What makes an exercise the best?

When you decide which exercises to include in your routine, it is important to consider the type of movement involved. The simpler the movement, the fewer calories you’ll burn and the fewer muscles you will strengthen. On the other hand, the more complex the movement, the more calories you will burn and the more muscles you will strengthen.

To put it simply, exercises that use complex movements will deliver better results than exercises that use only simple movements. Complex movements recruit multiple muscles, some to stabilize and others to perform the movement. This process keeps your heart rate higher than a simple exercise would, giving you a more intense workout.

Double Kettlebell Set Up
What is a complex movement?

A complex movement is a multi-joint movement that recruits large portions of the body to complete the exercise. Let’s compare a simple movement leg exercise with a complex movement leg exercise:

The leg extension machine uses a simple, isolated movement to work the quadriceps. You’re in a seated position moving only your knee joint. There isn’t much involvement, if any, from other muscles and it doesn’t burn very many calories.

Now let’s look at a free weight walking lunge. You start by standing with your feet together and a dumbbell in each hand at your sides (or a barbell across your shoulders, or a medicine ball held at your chest, or even with no weight at all). You take a large step forward and lower your back knee, keeping your front knee at a 90 degree angle. Now you push off your front foot and pull your back leg forward, repeating the movement.

How many muscles did you utilize while performing the lunge? Probably too many to count.

You certainly worked your quadriceps, gluteus, hamstrings, calves, abdominals, supporting muscles in your shoulders, arms and back—just to name a few. You also raised your heart rate and really kicked your metabolism into high gear. That’s what I call a great exercise.

Other ways to increase intensity

Using complex movements are just one of many ways to kick your workout intensity up a notch. Try incorporating a Super Set into your routine. To do so simply perform two or more exercises in a row and then take a short rest.

Or how about a Compound Set? Perform one exercise, rest, then perform an exercise with opposing body parts. To find exercises that compliment one another, choose ones that have similar but opposite motions such as a chest press and a row.

The key to finding the best exercise is to find the ones that bring your workout intensity to a whole new level.

I’d be shortchanging you if I named any exercise as the best. The fact of the matter is that it is a combination of changing your workouts up, using interval training, and even some good old cardio that will ultimately see you to your goal.

These methods will help you to burn more calories, increase your metabolic rate, and will stimulate the production of more fat burning and muscle toning hormones. Of course, there is more involved to achieving your fitness goals.

You need to incorporate fat burning into your routine.

You need to consistently challenge yourself during workouts.

You need to take control of your eating habits and to get your diet dialed in.

So with all that being said, here are a few of MY favorite BEST. EXERCISES. EVER.

Here is my Hells Bells Workout with all of these exercises

Equipment needed: Double kettle bells (Ones you can squat and press for 10 reps), barbell and plates (your 5 RM) and an Animalistic Attitude!

After a 10 minute warm up of your choice:

  1. Dead Lift 5 x 5 (10-15 mins)
  2. AMRAP 20 Minutes:
    • Double 24 kg swings x 10
    • Double Front Squat and Press x 8
    • TGU x 3/3
  3. Rest 5 mins
  4. 100 Burpees for time

So what’s the best exercise for you?

Coach Cambio



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The Official Beer Pee Chart Is Your Instant Dehydration Decoder

By Todd M. Cambio | January 4, 2017

I bring to you the official BEER “Pee Chart”!!!!

    I know this is a bit strange but I think this chart will get us talking about hydration which is great.  You need to know how important hydration is on health and performance.  Most don’t realize they are  actually walking around dehydrated.  This chart should help with that.  I tend to think of it in terms of beer color!  Simply match the color of your pee to the “Pee Chart” to see where you are!  If you are lighter than light, you are definitely doing well.



Why water is so important:

And more….

How much of the body is made up of water:

Your Instant Dehydration Decoder!



Coach Cambio




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Winter Strength and Conditioning For Middle Schoolers 2017

By Todd M. Cambio | January 3, 2017

Winter session 2016 is finished!  The kids tested out in the shuttle run (4 Quarters), broad jump, pro agility, bench press and mile run (girls only due to weather) this past week and did great!

Youth Strength and Conditioning

Test results showed:

  • Shuttle Run (test of anaerobic endurance) – on average showed a 3-4 second improvemnet which is a huge difference from day 1.
  • Broad Jump (test of leg power) – 2-3 inches of improvement.
  • Pro Agility (test of lateral speed and agility) – recorded lots of low 4 second runs (4.06, 4.07 and even our first sub-four second run at 3.98) so a .45 +/- improvement which is great!
  • Bench press (general upper body strength test) a solid 10 lb improvement across the board.
  • Mile run (test of general aerobic capacity) – no significant change but this was not the focus this session.

Winter S & C Session II will begin THURSDAY January 5th and will run until THURSDAY February 23rd.  

This session will focus more on strength training, running mechanics and of course injury prevention.  Learning proper loaded lifts such as dead lifts, front squats, shoulder press, rows and bench press utilizing kettlebells and barbells.

Cost: $200  (8 weeks vs 4 weeks this time)

When: at 2:45 – 3:45 for 8 weeks

  • Girls will go every Mon and Weds
  • Boys Tues and Thur

I am working on getting the PayPal working again too.  It will be on the website as well soon.

SIDE NOTE: I cannot prorate for missed sessions just way too many variables.

BUT if you need a reference, it is $20 a session if you do not sign up at the discounted rate.  Siblings simply add $100 each.


I want to touch on the topic of footwear for S&C.  I am a very strong believer in having people wear hard soled minimum style sneakers. Examples include: indoor soccer shoes or Converse Chuck Taylors.

Quick explanation is that most people wear soft squishy running sneakers that do a ton of damage to your ankles, knees and hips when training like an athlete.

Detailed explanation here: http://www.toddcambio.com/1-problem-when-working-out/

What running sneakers do when training in them (Bottom) compared to solid training sneakers (top): 

Proper footwear is essential to reduce injury and improve performance.

Proper footwear is essential to reduce injury and improve performance.

Happy New Year!

Coach Cambio


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Strength and Conditioning For Middle School Athletes

By Todd M. Cambio | November 22, 2016

Middle schoolers are at the optimal time to learn strength and conditioning basics.  These are the years to cement a solid foundation of movement.

Speed Work

My focus in this age group is teaching proper movement patterns for athletes and reduce the likelihood of injury.  Things like running mechanics, speed, agility, change of direction, footwork, general strength, cardiovascular endurance, and injury prevention.

So impressed with my young ladies! They back squatted for the 1st time and killed it! We drilled air squats, goblet squats, double kettlebell front squats and barbell front squats before putting a barbell on their back. They also picked up suspension (ring) tucks and rows. The U13 workout this day: 1. Continuous warm up/Dynamic Flex 2. SAQ: Suicides x 5 3. Lift 4×8: – Back Squats – Ring Tucks – Push Ups – Ring Rows 4. Conditioning: shuttle runs #CoachCambio #strengthandconditioning #trainlikeagirl #StrongFirst #squat #spartanup #spartanstrong #SpartanSGX #spartanracetraining #ocrtraining #kettleball #kettlebells

A photo posted by Todd Cambio (@coachcambio) on

Here are how I believe all athletes should train:

The 7th grade football boys showing huge gains in all major lifts. We tested dead lift, back squat, bench press and shoulder press. Started with a team based FMS, then a dynamic stretch then on to their test lifts. All PR’s. Great job lads! #coachcambio #strengthandconditioning #StrongFirst #deadlift #squat #benchpress #football

A photo posted by Todd Cambio (@coachcambio) on

To sign up for this program go here:


Where: 2 Kingsway Ave, Exeter, NH at CrossFit Reclamation

How Much: $100 (Cash or check is fine too)
WAIVER MUST BE FILLED OUT.  Please Print it and bring it before the 1st session:

WAIVER and CONTACT Information Form

When: 2:45 – 3:45

GIRLS Mon & Weds

BOYS Tues & Thurs

November 28th – December 22nd

This is where my background separates me from the rest of pack.  We will play games, have a ton of fun, and get our kids ready to kill the upcoming season!

Here is a general training approach I follow to build up my athletes:


I would be happy to give you any more information and discuss my training philosophies.  And I encourage you to pop in on a session to check us out in action.  But come prepared- these athletes in training are notorious for calling parents and coaches out to join them!

To sign up for this program go here:


Where: 2 Kingsway Ave, Exeter, NH at CrossFit Reclamation

How Much: $100

WAIVER MUST BE FILLED OUT.  Please Print it and bring it before the 1st session:

WAIVER and CONTACT Information Form

In case you are unfamiliar with my background, I am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with years of coaching and athletic experience.  Before moving here to Exeter, I sold my very successful Sports Performance Training facility.  I don’t coach the kids in their specific sport (that is the role of their sport coaches), I focus on making them better athletes so they can excel in their sport.  I have coached athletes of all levels from a middle school girl’s basketball team, multiple high school teams, numerous college players, several professional athletes and even an Olympian.

Stay Strong,



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Why You Should Be Doing A Dynamic Warm Up

By Todd M. Cambio | September 21, 2016

I was going through some past writing material and found these questions I had answered on dynamic stretching and realized I had never done anything with them.  The questions are geared towards athletes. However, if you are workout out, you are an athlete in my mind.

1) How does static stretching affect the body before and after a game or workout?

Static stretching is the classic holding of muscles in an extended range of motion (usually beyond the normal range of motion) with out moving for short periods of time.  It is highly recommended to do static stretching after workouts, practices and games as soon as you can to reset muscle length, reduce inflammation and speed up recovery.  Static stretching before games, practices and workouts is not advised unless the body’s core temperature has been elevated.  Stretching cold muscles will actually increase the risks of getting a muscle injury.  Research has also shown that static stretching can reduce an athlete’s power and explosiveness prior to games or workouts.

2) Do dynamic warm-ups mentally prepare the body?

A dynamic stretch routine definitely prepares the body from a neural standpoint.  By bringing the body through movement patterns that represent athletic movement patterns similar to the sport or activity you are about to do, your body’s central nervous system will be fired up properly and ready to go.  A structured, skill based warm-up can be used as a form of mental preparation that allows the athlete to visualize their success and focus on the game or training ahead.

3) What are the negatives to dynamic warm-ups?

I don’t know of any negatives if done properly.

4) How does dynamic warm-ups improve performance?

Athletes need to move in all planes of motion.  They must move forward, backwards, laterally, and rotate.  By including a warm up routine that is dynamic in nature, athletes can really fire up their central nervous system, increase their core temperature, get blood flow to working muscles, improve their flexibility and mobility, prevent tight muscles and improve balance.  All these elements lead to a boost in performance.

5) Who should use the dynamic warm-ups?

Everyone should.  My personal experience and research points to this as the best way to prep the body to do work and reduce injury.

6) If there were a few words you could say to people whom are still using static stretching, what would they be?

I would say it is still a very valuable method of injury prevention that SHOULD still be incorporated into your programs.  It is best utilized at the end of a workout, practice or game as a method of a cool down.  It still can be used prior to games and workouts if there is an acute muscle issue, such as an imbalance or if you are recovering from an injury.

7) Does dynamic warm-ups help you train as an athlete?

Absolutely.  Again this method of warming up mimics movements that you will be doing in your chosen activity as well as working on your weaknesses and/or imbalances which you may or may not even know about.

8) How important is a proper pre-game warm-up?

A pre-game dynamic warm-up is a method used to prepare the body for exercise that actively engages muscles through a functional range of motion.   Properly implemented, a dynamic warm-up will use continuous movement to transition from a resting heart rate and body temperature to a working heart rate, elevating an athlete’s core temperature causing them to break a sweat.   The warm up should also progress from low to higher intensity.   By developing flexibility and coordination, while serving as a means of injury prevention.  The dynamic warm up will improve elasticity of muscles, tendons, ligaments and the range of motion around joints.

Check out this general athlete’s dynamic warm up routine we used at my facility:


Movements include:

  1. jumping jacks
  2. pogo jumps
  3. seal jacks
  4. squats
  5. sumo walk
  6. lateral lunges
  7. lunges with a twist
  8. skips (backwards too)
  9. carioca
  10. toy soldier
  11. cross over toe touch
  12. spiderman (backwards too)

I would like to point out that I recommend you do some soft tissue work prior to doing your dynamic warm up.  Mash, Smash and Move!

Be Fit,





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Injured Again

By Todd M. Cambio | September 19, 2016

Can you relate to this scenario?

Scared Face

After putting it off for too long, you commit to “get fit”. You go to CrossFit, start training for to a Spartan Race, join a boot camp class, etc.—only to find yourself injured shortly down the road or even the minute you start working out.

I also see this scenario all the time with people using a sport (ex: basketball, LAX, soccer, running, etc.) of choice to get in shape vs getting in proper shape to play the game. Classic fail usually.

I also see the “reoccurring injured” person often. The person that workouts hard for (example) 3 months, then gets hurt. They take a month or two off and go right back to doing the exact same workouts they did before only to repeat this process over and over again.

Then what happens? All of the sudden your fitness goals go back on the shelf and you are left to deal with the pain. Whether your injury occurs right off the bat or after years of regular workouts the result is always the same. It is discouraging, painful and downright depressing.

And since studies suggest that up to 38% of all exercisers suffer from an injury each year and 80% of runners will get an injury, it is a subject worth exploring.

Let me point out, I am talking Non-Contact based injuries. I am talking about when you keep going through minor aches and pains until something snaps, pops or just hurts so much you have to stop working out.

Contact injuries are from blunt trauma! A person rolls into your knees and you tear your ACL. You get in a car accident and hurt your back. Things like that are contact injuries.

The old “Once I get going the pain goes away” scenario is you ignoring the body’s check engine light. Not a good habit to be in.

Top 3 Workout Injuries

The following three ailments occur commonly among active people. Let’s explore the cause of each and then detail your very own injury prevention plan—because let’s face it, you simply don’t have time to spend nursing and injury (and losing all that progress you had made).

1. Strain / Pulled Muscle: occurs when a tendon (connects muscle to bone) or muscle is stretched or torn. If you suffer from a strain you will feel pain and swelling in the muscle belly, or loss of function if the strain occurred in a tendon. Many strains occur as the result of an improper warm-up and insufficient stretching.

2. Sprain: occurs when a ligament (connects bone to bone) is stretched or torn. While this can happen to any ligament in your body, the most common placements of sprains are in the ankle, wrist and knee. Often this injury will happen suddenly as the ligament is stretched beyond its normal limit, usually during a fall or other acute trauma.

3. Low Back Pain: it is said that 80% of the population will experience back pain at some point in their lives—and the list of causes is as diverse as the sufferers themselves. Here are the main reasons for workout related back pain:

Your 5-Step Injury Prevention Plan

Injuries don’t have to slow you from meeting your fitness goals. The following 5 steps will dramatically reduce your chance of injury and if you do find yourself injured, but have been following these 5 steps, your recovery will be quick and efficient.

Step 1: Mash, Smash and Move

Mash – Use any tool that hits the soft tissue areas of your body. Pay special attention to your areas of greatest need. I prefer a LAX ball, foam roller and evan a barbell to do this. Look for spots that hurt. Work the whole body of your muscles then work down to your biggest pain areas.2016-09-17-08.38.38.png
Smash – Move the tool (LAX Ball, Roller, Barbell, etc.) all around your muscles and fascia and find those spots that hurt. Spend time of them by smashing, then hold those spots for a minute and simply breath. If it hurts, you need it more.

Move – Move the muscles you just mashed and smashed either with simple extension flexion or simple exercises that are in your warm up. Form is obviously critical here. Proper form will also re-train your CNS (Cental Nervous System).

You can Mash, Smash and Move before and after exercising. You can make extended Mash, Smash and Moving sessions as an active recovery day too.

One of my favorite “Moves” ^^ after Mashing and Smashing is the Turkish Get Up. It really is loaded yoga. It has a hip extension, a rolling pattern, a couple hip hinges, a lunge pattern and is incredible for full body mobility, stability and (when load is added) strength.

You can also Stretch after you mash and smash. What is more boring than stretching? You want to exercise, not sit around touching your toes—right? Even though it isn’t exciting, stretching is the best way to increase muscle elasticity and durability. Tight muscles are big contributors to strains—remember? Take the time to stretch everyday before (dynamically) and after (static) your workout to stave off injury.

Step 2: Warm Up – Dynamic

Preparing for your workout should not begin and end with putting on your gym clothes. Your muscles need to be coaxed into motion by way of a 10-15 minute warm up in order to prepare them for injury-free use. Cold muscles are less elastic and are therefore more prone to tears. Talking dynamic movements here not static stretching.

Sample warm up:

Step 3: Proper Gear

For most fitness enthusiasts proper gear has everything to do with their shoes. Don’t be fooled—not just any shoe will do. Find shoes that offer support and traction for your exercise of choice, and make sure that they aren’t too tight or too loose. If you are prone to ankle injuries then try a pair of high-tops for extra support until you fix the stability problem.

Stay away from squishy running sneakers to train in! They actually contribute to the above mentioned injuries.

Running shoes are for running, not for working out, lifting weights, or swinging kettlebells!

Step 4: Lifestyle

Stop for a moment and think about your car—if you don’t maintain it with regular tune ups, oil changes and quality fuel then you can’t expect it to perform well on the road. The same applies to your body. Getting healthy amounts of sleep, eating well balanced meals and staying hydrated will all contribute to your performance during exercise. The healthier your lifestyle is the less likely you are to suffer an injury.

Step 5: Condition

This may seem like the most obvious step to injury prevention, but unfortunately it is the most overlooked. People who keep their bodies in top condition by exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy lifestyle are the least likely to injure themselves. When exercise programs are started and stopped sporadically your muscles are most likely to become injured.

Of course being conditioned also has another great benefit that everyone enjoys – you get to look and feel great! And who doesn’t what that, right?

BIG Take Home Points

I now want you to think of the Mashing, Smashing and Moving like brushing and flossing your teeth. If you do not do it daily, you will get a cavity!

You cannot eat and drink and expect great teeth and gum health without brushing and flossing right????

Don’t play to get in shape, get in shape to play!

Well, you can’t expect healthy muscles and joints without proper maintenance either. Mash, Smash and Move for full body health and injury prevention!



Stay Strong My Friends!

Coach Cambio




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Summer Strength and Conditioning For Middle School Athletes

By Todd M. Cambio | June 23, 2016

The summer is here and it is that time to start prepping for fall sports.  The best athletes train like athletes.  They do strength training, speed, agility, change of direction drills and more.  The best athletes do not show up to fall sports out of shape.  This program will be fun and challenging all at the same time.

GOAL: Injury proof our kids while at the same time having them come into their sport in the fall ready to go.  Focus will be on proper movement patterns, strength, speed and agility work.  It will be up the their individual sport coaches to add their appropriate sport skills.  This program easily allows me to program appropriately to accommodate the kids attending various sport camps or missed time due to taking a vacation.


June 26th – Sunday – FREE Workout for all ages and families!  (learn our warm up and basic body weight movements)  My Spartan Revolution Workout.  PARENTS THIS IS FOR YOU TOO.


July 1st – Test Day!  Broad jump, Pro agility, 300 yard shuttle test.
Strength and Conditioning is 3 days per week: M, W, F.
July 4th – OFF
July 6th – Strength & Conditioning
July 8th – Strength & Conditioning
July 11th – Strength & Conditioning
July 13th – Strength & Conditioning
July 15th – Strength & Conditioning
July 18th – Strength & Conditioning
July 20th – Strength & Conditioning
July 22nd – Strength & Conditioning
July 25th – Strength & Conditioning
July 27th – Strength & Conditioning
July 29th – Strength & Conditioning
Pre-Season Strength & Conditioning 5 days per week
Aug 1st – Strength
Aug 2nd – Conditioning
Aug 3rd – Strength
Aug 4th – Conditioning
Aug 5th – Strength
Aug 8th – Strength
Aug 9th – Conditioning
Aug 10th – Strength
Aug 11th – Conditioning
Aug 12th – Strength
  • Strength training at 1 Kingsway Ave, Exeter, at CrossFit Reclamation.
  • Conditioning in August is at Linden Street Field.
  • 8:30 am – 9:30 am
AGES: Middle School Boys and Girls.
    1. $150 Strength Training and Extra August Conditioning.  Full 6 weeks.
    2. $120 Just Strength Training (full 6 weeks M, W, F only)
    3. $60 Conditioning Only August*
    4. Family Discount: $200 for 2 or more siblings.  Includes Strength Training and extra August Conditioning.

Choose Program:

IF you are new WAIVER MUST BE FILLED OUT.  Please Print it and bring it before the 1st session:WAIVER and CONTACT Information Form

There are no prorated discounts for family vacations or missed time.  We will still offer the strength component during twilight camp at the end of July. 
*No family discount for just August Conditioning.
1st come 1st serve.  There is limited space on the Strength component.  
Be Fit,
Todd M. Cambio, BS, BA, CSCS
#Coach Cambio



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