MosLadder has posted information on Indian club training and how to make a homemade Indian club before, but it is time for an update.
One of the problems you run into quickly when you train with a homemade Indian club or club bells, is how to add weight to the club. There are several methods I have tried. But first, if you have not seen the posts or videos on making a simple and inexpensive clubbell/Indian clubs, have a look here:
Try these three steps to get a heavier homemade indian club:
1.) Get a longer pipe. Not too long, because it will make it difficult to perform swing and swipes without choking up on the club. This in turn reduces the resistance and defeats the purpose. However, I have had good results using a longer handle section and ‘club’ section up to about 36 inches.
2.) Pack your pipes with sand or lead shot. The first is easy, the second can be difficult. Lead is not just stocked on the shelves at your local home improvement store. Still, someone may have access to it, and if so, it will pack on the weight.
3.) This is the best method so far: add progressively smaller pipes inside and then pack with sand. This is fairly inexpensive, allows your ‘indian clubs’ to get incrementally heavier as you progress, and can allow a significant weight increase relative to the size of the pipe. Check out the pictures below:
In the first, I took an 11+ pound club to about 14 pounds, and still have room to increase it. This is in a 2 inch diameter pipe. In the second, I took a 13+ pound homemade clubbell to roughly 24 pounds! The size of the handle and club shaft are only a half inch apart, so it takes away some of the imbalance that makes the clubs effective, but it is still significant.
You may be wondering why you can’t just increase the diameter of the club shaft, then you can really pack it with pipes! The answer is simple: Two inch diameter pipes are easy to find at hardware stores everywhere. Ditto with the caps and reducing couplers in that size.
When you go up to 2 ½ inch diameter pipe, caps and reducing couplers, they are scarce. Now you’re thinking a 3 inch would be perfect, right? Unfortunately, I have yet to find this size in anything less than a ten foot length of uncut pipe for a cost that doesn’t make sense for a homemade item.
You can order these parts at online stores like Grainger. However, the cost of a 3 or 4 inch reducing coupler, 12 inch pipe nipple and cap is high, and again, not cost effective for a homemade clubbell. At this point, you are better off buying from RMax international, even with the shipping. The cost is equivalent or less for an arguably superior product.
One consideration to make before you decide to increase the weight is this: Can you do any clubbell/indian clubs exercise in perfect form? If not, it might be wise to spend some time perfecting technique before adding weight. But don't stay at one weight forever, either! Load it up and have some fun!
More great reading on kettlebells, another ballistic training tool: