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Steve Cotter – Strength, Kettlebells And Training For A Lifetime (#74)

Life lessons from “the OG of kettlebell training”.

What do you think?

11 Points
Steve Cotter - Strength, Kettlebells And Training For A Lifetime (#74) | The Black Country Buddhas Podcast | My Home Vitality

Introduction to guest:

Steve Cotter is a driving force in global mind-body-breath integration with fitness.

A pioneer in Kettlebell Training, Steve is most responsible for bringing Kettlebells all around the world having personally travelled to and certified instructors in more than 70 different countries.

He was named one of the 100 fittest men of all time by Men’s Health Magazine and has certified kettlebell instructors in more than 70 different countries.

Steve joins us today to talk about how he is helping move humanity forward towards a more healthy and vital existence.

It was fascinating to hear how much physical work he is getting through at the age of 51 and his perspectives on training, recovery and personal development.

Some of the key topics in today’s show include:

  • Defining what fitness is.
  • How strength can be learned.
  • What Steve looks at when coaching beginners.
  • The most potent kettlebell techniques.
  • The secrets behind his own training methodologies and how he recovers.

For those of you interested in physical training, no matter what your level or interest, there will be something in this podcast for you.

Enjoy the show and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel to join the live discussions!

More from Steve:


YouTube: Steve Cotter IKFF

Instagram:  @stevecotter_ikff

Key quotes and takeaways from the show:

“Fitness is a necessary facet of a life well lived.”

A well-developed kettlebell sport athlete is not going to have a lot of injuries. The problem is not repetitive movement, it is repeating wrong movements. Once you master the mechanics and you have correct alignment, you are moving in a way that is biomechanically efficient. “Economy of motion” = “Effortless power”

We can be fit without being healthy, but we can’t be healthy without being fit.

“Perfect practice makes perfect.”

Skill development is principle based. Specifics will change over the course of a lifespan.

“I look at the psycho and emotional factors before the physical aspects. The physical aspects are pretty well established… posture, breathing, mechanical movement, etc.” “The starting point is to love yourself because it gives you the ability to go into those dark places.”

The law of individual differences is imperative! Look at the design of the tools and how they fit with the user. “I don’t operate in templates. It’s a landscape painting.”

Let people make mistakes.

Breaking down and identifying steps within a skill helps you reanalyse the things that are going wrong and personalise the skill to your specific attributes.

Breathing for kettlebell sport: Don’t hold your breath at any time. Emphasise a strong exhale through the mouth. Multiple breaths for every repetition.

“You can be a great lifter and a terrible coach.”

Recovery is a balance of all things: nutrition, hydration, sleep, stress management, belief systems, presence, community, etc.

“I’m always recovered. I’ve developed the ability to function within a certain level of homeostasis.”

Quality of sleep is important for recovery. “One can sleep 6, 8, 10 hours and not be rested and one can sleep less than that and be rested.”

“I’m not burning energy on a self-identity crisis.” Self-identity is a process we all go through and when you learn to find peace with yourself, you’re not using unnecessary energy worrying about self-identity.

On recovery: “Why would I want to recover from my life? I’m not killing myself. I’m not training harder than I’m capable of training to the point where I can’t walk for three days and need to recover.”

“When you eliminate the contradictions in life, you are able to recover [better] because that’s nature.”

“My pain is not greater than yours.”

“Pressure makes diamonds.” “Find comfort within the discomfort.”

“If I feel good about myself, I can feel good about you.”

“Our greatest power is in a collective/collaborative model, it is not in isolation.”

Question of the day:

“Where do you start when learning a skill and developing strength?”

Links to podcast sites:

Listen on Audible
Listen on iTunes
Listen on Spotify
Listen on Stitcher
Listen on Overcast

The full podcast:

Related episode:

If you enjoyed this podcast, you will also enjoy the show we recorded with Steve Maxwell, another “OG of kettlebell training,” who shares different insights into strength training, breathwork, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and life.

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Show notes:

  • 00:00:00 – Coming up.
  • 00:00:27 – Overall show introduction.
  • 00:01:05 – Finding your purpose, happiness and success in life –
  • 00:02:30 – Introduction to today’s show.
  • 00:03:54 – Hello from San Diego.
  • 00:04:08 – How did Steve get ranked as one of the 100 fittest men of all time?
  • 00:05:45 – What is fitness?
  • 00:06:37 – What are the characteristics of health and wellness?
  • 00:07:27 – Why is Steve competing in kettlebell sport again at the age of 51?
  • 00:08:59 – The difference between health and athletics.
  • 00:12:33 – Is strength a skill?
  • 00:18:33 – Where do you start when learning a skill and developing strength?
  • 00:32:45 – Breathing techniques that Steve uses.
  • 00:44:10 – What sort of kettlebell should a beginner start with?
  • 00:53:52 – Kettlebell movements for beginners.
  • 00:57:11 – Steve’s current training regime.
  • 01:01:12 – Steve’s recovery process.
  • 01:28:42 – Where to find more, next week’s guest and
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