Clubs are probably the oldest tools for physical development we have documentation on, dating back thousands of years in Hindu tradition. These tools were used predominantly by soldiers and police for training. The British brought Indian clubs from India and are still used by the British Marine Physical instructors today. The clubbell much as the name says it is essentially a weighted club. This was probably the first weighted tool that we used and it was to train for combat. Prior to weapons the majority of humanities movements were closed chain, we were climbing trees and large rocks and mountains and hand to hand combat. When we started swinging sticks around this was probably one of the first times we started moving things around us instead of us around other things. The club extends upward above the hand instead of below like the kettlebell and in the center as a dumbbell or barbell does. The type of movements that we do with these tends to be a bit different. Again the conventional form of movements can be replicated as in we can totally do a biceps curl with a club and it is different from doing a curl with a dumbbell but similar to the kettle bell we can swing these instruments and in the swing we are able to utilize centripetal forces that help to traction our joints and create an outward pull instead of always dealing with compressive forces on the body. Unlike the kettlebell we are able to get into more complicated movements and sequences for the shoulders and wrist helping to develop shoulder and wrist mobility and strength.
And as mentioned in the book “The Spaces in Between” I talk about movements that are “alive” and movements that are “dead”. By this I mean a “dead” movement is where we essentially move along a track where we get to an end point and return following the same pattern, while an “alive” movement is almost seen as a circle or a figure 8 motion where it continues to flow in one direction and does not return following the reverse pattern back.
Clubs can go up to 20 kilograms if you can find a gym that does carry clubs, and if you do find a facility that carries clubs chances are they won’t be that heavy. Largely due to the lack of familiarity and knowing how to use them beyond the way one might use a dumbbell most gyms don’t invest much into these interesting tools.
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