I'm going to explain how you can take the Tabata Protocol – one of the most effective high intensity interval training methods around – and use it with the kettlebell swing for a brutal and time-efficient fat loss workout.
First, a quick overview of the Tabata method: The protocol was originally developed by a coach of the Japanese speed skating team. Izumi Tabata, a Japanese scientet, and his research group took the protocol and attempted to quantify its effects in a clinical setting. The findings of the study, in a nutshell, were that high intensity interval training – and particularly the Tabata Protocol – appears to give us the best of both worlds – aerobic and anerobic fitness. Not to mention that it's incredibly hard!
The protocol – which can be used with anything from sprints to kettlebell swings – is simply twenty seconds of all-out, high intensity effort, alternated with ten seconds of rest, and repeated eight times.
So to do this with the kettlebell swing, one might do a few easy warm-up sets, and then perform eight sets of twenty seconds in length with ten second breaks in between each set. A set or two to cool down gives you an incredible fat burning workout in less than 15 minutes!
When performing kettlebell swings, and swings 'Tabata-style' in particular, one must pay very close attention to using perfect form. Getting sloppy is a sure-fire way to hurt yourself with this exercise.
The Tabata protocol is one of my favorite ways to get a great fat burning workout in a very short amount of time. Using this protocol with the kettlebell swing is a particularly effective way to use the Tabata method.