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Indian Club Swinging – Mindful Motion from the Timeless Past

by Ed Thomas, Ed.D, lowa Department of Education Health and Physical Education Consultant, Assistant Professor of Graceland University, Lamoni, Iowa

The mainstream paradigm shift from cosmetic to functional physical training has fueled a renascence of innovative methods and materials that will benefit people of all ages and athletic ability. It has also drawn many of our best and brightest to a deeper study and appreciation of the historical, philosophical and cultural roots from which our current wisdom is emerging.

Kettlebells, agility ladders, heavy hoops, resistance tubing, medicine balls, dumbbells, and numerous other training tools from the past are now widely employed. Off-the-ground training is quickly evolving. We have not seen such a widespread interest in functional fitness since World War II. Those who led the way during that time were inspired by their elders who created the Golden Era of American physical training in the late-1900s. Our Golden Era was based upon earlier European systems of physical training that borrowed from 14th - 16th Century Renaissance thinkers, and the Greeks inspired them.

Medicine balls, dumbbells, weighted wands and Indian clubs were the four horseman of the hand-held tools used during the Golden Era. The first three have been widely discussed in recent years. The growing interest in club swinging was fueled by demonstrations at last year's Perform Better Summit and the NSCA National Convention.

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