Heavy clubs vs light clubs | Which is right for you?

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Categories: Indian clubs

If you’re considering training with Indian clubs, you probably have been wondering if you should go for heavy clubs or light clubs.

With so many types and so many styles of club swinging, it can be hard to figure out what to start with.

We hope to break it down for you in this post and help you make an informed decision.

Let’s keep it simple!

At Heroic Sport, we differentiate between 2 styles: open style and closed style.
Open style is what most Westerners would associate Indian clubs to: light clubs swung in the British tradition.

Light clubs

Open style club swinging is typically done with 2 light clubs, although you can swing with a single club as well.
Light clubs, in this context, means clubs you can swing at full arm’s length with good elevation on each cast. This style can also be referred to as “fancy club swinging” and makes use of all 3 pivot points (shoulder, elbow and wrist) for some intricate movements.
When working with 2 clubs, you can do a pattern in sync or out of sync which results in nearly endless combinations.

Heavy clubs

Closed style club swinging is done with heavy clubs, and here we aim to reduce the lever arm, and therefore the overall forces by swinging the clubs closer in against the body.
Because of the weight and size of the clubs, swinging with 2 clubs is limited to a few movements, as seen done with Persian Meels and Indian Joris.

By contrast, by swinging 1 club and switching hands (as done with Karlakattai), you open up all planes of motion and access a rich and amazing repertoire of exercises.

If you’d like to read more about the different styles, check out on of our previous articles.

In the video below, I demonstrate the possibilities for multiplannar exercises with Indian clubs.

Think less, swing more. It’s all good!

There are quite a few things that are common to all clubs, regardless of their weight, as long as you’re not trying to do a 1RM attempt…

Club swinging offers a form of meditation in motion. The repetitive, rhythmic, circular swings put the brain in a slight trance which is highly regenerative and relaxing.

Lots of physical attributes, like core strength and balance are activated and trained in a reactive fashion, which simply means it happens without you having to think about it.

Help me decide!

If you are primarily interested in strength and full body training, invest in one of our adjustable heavy clubs, like the Pahlavandle XL or Pahlavandle TG. Start with single club, and check out some of our workouts.

If you are primarily interested in using the clubs to feel better overall, or are already following a strength training program, invest in a set of Pahlavandle original, and learn the heart shaped swings and all their variations.

Side by side comparison

I tried to recap the key points for light clubs and a single heavy club in a simple comparison table. This is general information for people without prior club swinging experience.

  Light clubs Heavy club
Warm up/ restitution ✔✔✔
Joint health ✔✔✔ ✔✔
Shoulder mobility & stability ✔✔✔ ✔✔✔
Core training ✔✔ ✔✔✔
Full body strength ✔✔✔
Grip strength & dexterity ✔✔✔
Learning / teaching others ✔✔
Brain gymnastics ✔✔✔ ✔✔

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