Here’s a look back in time… Globe dumbbells, climbing ropes, Milo kettlebells, gymnastic rings, swedish bars — note the double handled kettlebells used for swingbell exercises. A half-moon bench can be seen in the foreground. This unique piece of equipment was used specifically for chest expansion exercises and used to be quite common. Also note the handbalancing stands on the right, with a dumbbell in between, presumable for lifting in the teeth at the same time — that’s old school! Look closely and you’ll also see a 150 lb. kettlebell.
After all, when you lift weights, you can only lift them in straight lines…but your body moves and functions in a circular manner. This is especially true for the ball-and-socket joint of the shoulder. Think of how many different directions you can move your arm and how few of them you can reach with “weights” alone.
There’s no question that the shoulder girdle is by far one of the most movable areas of the body but it is also one of the most fragile. Regardless of how you use your body, it is very important to keep the shoulders strong, loose, and flexible.
But many people never fully develop their natural shoulder girdle mobility and muscular balance. Let me tell you about a simple training technique that will help you to an incredible degree…
More Flexible… AND Saves Your Shoulders
Several thousand years ago, Indian wrestlers and warriors prepared themselves for battle by swinging wooden “clubs” to condition their bodies and build upper-body strength.
This practice spread amongst many different countries throughout the ensuing centuries — club swinging of some form can be found in nearly every middle-eastern and Asian country.
In the 1800’s, British soldiers started practicing “Indian Club” techniques and brought them back to Europe where the clubs became part of the physical culture tradition.
In time, European immigrants brought Indian Club training to American shores. Club swinging was adopted into American school physical education programs and military physical readiness training.
In the early 20th century, many students began their day with a few minutes of club swinging to wake up mind and body.
Utilizing a series of graceful swinging movements, Indian Club training was a simple method for individuals to build stronger, healthier bodies while promoting joint integrity and improving strength and overall vitality.
Sadly, Indian Club training fell out of favor (at least on these shores) some time around the 1920’s but fortunately they did not disappear forever…
The benefits of club swinging are endless …and now you can bring this ancient tradition into your own workout with our New Classic Wooden Indian Clubs. We’ve got three different weights for club swingers of all experience levels.
Our new clubs are made right here in America out of oak hardwood and fashioned from classic designs ~ right from the history books! These classic wooden Indian clubs range from one to three pounds in weight and from 16-1/2 inches to 20 inches in length.
You simply need a space big enough to let you swing the clubs without interference and you are in business. Keep in mind that just because the clubs are “relatively” light doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to get one hell of a workout. When used correctly, the clubs can humble even the strongest of athletes.
A few of the graceful movements which can be done with a pair of Indian Clubs – they are not just for show, such movements will strength the shoulder girdle to a very high degree.
The biggest question on your mind is undoubtedly whether you really can get a great workout with something as light as a few pounds.
Think about what we are trying to do here (and keep in mind that Indian Club training is not like training with “weights” as you know it) – the clubs allow you to apply resistance in a circular manner, thus improving posture, increasing blood flow, and flexibility to all joints involved. Indian Clubs will help you “open” up your chest, increasing lung capacity and helping you breathe more efficiently.
Remember how I mentioned the shoulder joint earlier? When the ball-and-socket joint of the shoulder is made stronger, aligned, and more mobile, other joints like the wrist and elbow also benefit…and Indian Clubs can exercise the shoulder, wrist and elbow in ways not possible with traditional linear weight training.
The movements are easy to learn and just a few minutes of club swinging makes you feel “solid” and ready for action.
As a strength athlete, shoulder health is of the utmost importance – a few minutes of Indian Club swinging a day will keep your shoulders feeling stronger and more powerful. Indian Clubs have long been popular in the military and even today among modern combat athletes looking for greater shoulder strength and stability.
Of course, Indian Club training will benefit any athlete in any sport.
Just to make sure you learn the correct techniques “right out of the box,” we have also included two different types of instructional materials with each Indian Club package:
Learn the Ancient Art of Indian Club
Exercises with Dr. Ed Thomas
24″ x 36″ Simple Indian Club Exercises Instructional Poster by Staff Sgt. Moss
First up is the how-to video “Learn the Ancient Art of Indian Club Exercises,” which is hosted by Dr. Ed Thomas, a Fulbright scholar, martial artist, and physical education teacher, who has been teaching Indian club and physical education classes in schools across the country for decades.
Dr. Thomas is recognized as THE foremost modern Indian Club expert. This 35-minute instructional video demonstrates all the basic Indian Club swinging movements. This is nopt a physical dvd — once you place your order, you will receive a link to a special page where the video can be viewed online any time day or night.
This video is not a Hollywood production by any means but it will help you figure out what to do with a set of clubs in your hands.
Additionally, back in 1905, the famed strong man, gymnast and physique star Staff Sgt. Alfred Moss put together his own course on Indian Club swinging which outlines all the basic movements one by one.
We have reproduced Staff Sgt. Moss’ course in poster form, making a classy addition to your gym wall. This poster is 24-inches x 36-inches, landscape-oriented, printed on heavyweight, glossy, high-quality poster stock and also digitally “aged” giving it an Oldtime look and feel. This poster looks like it would be right at home in Sig Klein’s Gym or the old Hemmenway Gymnasium at the turn of the century. You can get your own poster with all Indian Club sets ordered from us as a special bonus although they can also be purchased separately on our Indian Club order page.
If you are ready to add Indian Clubs to your routine, look no further than our Classic Wooden Indian Club package. These clubs have a traditional look with a quality finish — you can’t beat Oak hardwood — and great for general use. As indicated above, every set of Indian clubs comes bundled with the Ed Thomas instructional video (streaming) and Staff Sgt. Moss poster as well.
Do NOT underestimate these clubs because of their seemingly light weight. They clubs will give you a great workout, regardless of your strength. When we first received these clubs, I picked up the clubs and gave them a try. I broke a sweat just minutes into the routine. For such a small amount of weight, they sure do make you work.
One additional note about the clubs – they are hand-turned and as with any handmade, natural product they may have small imperfections. Rest assured that these slight differences in the cosmetic appearance of the clubs will not affect their functionality in any way. The weight of each club may also vary slightly but we will always make sure that clubs are matched evenly.
Training with Indian clubs is a great way to improve your overall physical strength, flexibility, and shoulder integrity. They are portable, easy to pick up and use, and will produce results almost immediately. No matter what your age or ability level, these clubs are an excellent workout.
It should be noted though that Reg et al, performed bodybuilding movements with kettlebells, (usually shoulder and arm work) and did not train with them in the kettlebell methods that are widely promoted today.
Also of note is that fact that barbell plates and equipment from just about every other equipment company, including those who were older, are fairly “common” in comparison to this set. I know of no one who has even seen a single Narragansett Barbell or plate in the flesh, let alone owned one. If you should come across any, please let us know.