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Are Kettlebell Deadlifts Effective

author
James Lee
• Friday, 14 May, 2021
• 14 min read

The dead lift kettle bell activates most of the muscles in the body and relies on the posterior chain consisting of the Glutes, Hamstrings and Back Extensors. The main reason for practicing this exercise before exercises like the Kettle bell Swing is because motor control, mobility and correct muscle activation must all work together in order to maximize effective movement and minimize the risk of injury.

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Contents

There are many other stabilizer muscles worked with the KB dead lift but these are the big prime movers. As you lift from the floor you are pulling the weight up using the power of the Glutes and Hamstrings while keeping the back in an isometric position with the strength of your core muscles.

In an age where we spend a lot of time sitting and leaning forwards the KB Dead lift helps counteract this posture and pull everything backwards, opening up the chest and shoulders. The more muscle mass you can use when you exercise the more energy (or calories) are required to fuel that movement.

Push the hips backwards maintaining a flat back Keep your weight back on your heels and chest up Allow the kettle bell to lower to the floor with a straight arm Pause at the bottom of the position Drive your hips forwards and stand tall Squeeze your buttocks tight and don’t lean backwards The dead lift kettle bell focuses on movement from the hips while keeping a flat and isometrically (statically) maintained lower back.

The knees should bend as you reach down to pick up the kettle bell but the hips should be forced backwards with the weight on the outside of the feet and onto the heels. By concentrating on the distribution of weight over your feet you will feel the activation up and into your Glutes (buttocks).

Keep a good grip on the kettle bell to help correctly activate your shoulder stabilizers. You can practice the Dead lift with kettle bells of various weights, ironically many people find using a heavier weight enables them to better feel the Glutes and Hamstrings working and forces better activation through the lower half of the body.

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Lifting the kettle bell from the side rather than between your legs puts additional demands onto your core stabilizers. Using two kettle bells for the suitcase dead lift does increase the demands on the legs and buttocks but it also reduces the core stabilization that you get with the one handed variation.

First you would perform the kettle bell row while leaning forwards with a flat back and then stand tall to complete the dead lift movement. The single-handed dead lift is pulled from between the legs which naturally puts the torso into a slight rotation and increases cross body core activation.

If you start to snap your hips though at the top of this exercise it is also great preparation for the kettle bell swing. If you want to learn to connect the top of the body to the bottom via the core muscles then this is the exercise for you.

You will need good balance and core strength in order to complete this exercise correctly. It is possible to really overload the one leg with this exercise and is great for more athletic strength.

The kettle bell dead lift is a fundamental movement pattern that relies on the muscles of the legs, buttocks and back. Often referred to as a posterior chain exercise because its works the muscles of the back line.

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The kettle bell dead lift is possibly one of the most effective full body exercises available. The dead lift works more into the back of the body whereas the squat has more emphasis on the front and the quads.

The kettle bell dead lift is one of the most effective ways of working your lower and upper body simultaneously. It involves a hip-hinge movement that helps in building size and strength in your posterior chain.

You can use it as part of your hip or hamstring exercise routine or as an alternative to barbell dead lift. It keeps your back in an isometric position (the length of the muscles does not change after contraction) and improves posture.

Kettle bell Dead lift Kettle bell SwingMovement Involves A continuous controlled motionExplosive motion to send the KB up to the shoulder height Muscles Worked Hips, hamstrings, quads, back, ships, hamstrings, lats, abs, and shoulders Weight Used Performed by lifting heavier weights (50-70 lbs)Done by swinging lighter weights (35-45 lbs) Start by placing a kettle bell (weighing about 50-70 lbs) between your feet, while standing in dead lift stance. Slightly bending your knees, hinge at your hips to push your body backward and grab the KB by its horns.

Drive your hips forward and push your feet into the floor to lift the kettle bell off the ground. A dead lift is a compound exercise where a weighted barbell starts on the floor.

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Dead lifts train multiple muscle groups including the: If you’re at an advanced fitness level, you’ll need a heavy amount of weight to benefit from dead lifts.

Remember, correct form is always more important than the number of sets. Continue to add weight only after you’ve mastered the correct form.

As you’re gripping the bar, press feet flat into the floor and sink your hips back. Keeping a flat back, push hips forward into a standing position.

Finish standing with your legs straight, shoulders back, and knees almost locked out. The bar should be held with straight arms slightly lower than hip height.

Aim for 1 to 6 reps, depending on the amount of weight you are lifting. This exercise is similar to a traditional dead lift, but felt in the hamstrings.

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Start with the bar at hip level and grip it with palms facing down. Keep the bar close to your body as you lower it toward your feet, pushing your hips back throughout the movement.

Drive your hips forward to stand up tall, keeping the barbell in front of the thighs. Let the cable resistance slowly pull your hands toward the top of your feet.

Extend from the hips and return to the starting position, standing up tall. Keep a flat back and hinge forward with your hips to bend down and grab the kettle bell with both hands.

This explosive movement should propel the kettle bell to chest or shoulder height. Place the Boss balance trainer on the ground, flat side up.

Balance on the standing leg while bending your knee and slowly lowering your body down into a squat. Keep your body weight in the heel, and, with your back straight, lean forward.

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You can also perform this exercise on the ground if balancing on the Boss is too advanced. If you belong to a gym, work with a trainer or fitness professional.

Have the trainer watch your form to confirm you are performing the exercise correctly. Once you have the correct form down, you can practice dead lifts regularly as part of your exercise routine.

Personal trainers the world over include dead lifts in their training programs, and it’s also the last discipline in powerlifting competitions, coming after squats and bench presses. But, if you train at home, you may not have the equipment or space to do conventional or sumo barbell dead lifts.

After all, dead lift bars are usually seven feet long, and you need weight plates too. Kettlebelldeadlifts offer several advantages and benefits over other types of dead lifts.

That’s because it’s often easier to keep the weight over your base of support and closer to your body. They also teach you the techniques and skills you will need to progress safely onto barbell dead lifts.

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With so many kettle bell dead lift variations to choose from, you can use any of these exercises to add variety to your workouts and eliminate weak points in your muscular development. This will help keep your workouts fresh and exciting and prevent boredom.

Here are seven of the best kettle bell dead lift variations and alternatives, all of which are perfect for home exercisers. If you want a stronger posterior chain, including a firmer butt, the Romanian kettle bell dead lift is the exercise for you.

Hold your kettle bell (s) in front of your thighs and stand with your feet roughly hip-width apart. Bend your knees slightly, but then keep them rigid for the duration of your set.

Push your hips back, hinge forward, and lower your kettle bells down the fronts of your legs as far as your flexibility allows. The one-legged kettle bell dead lift is useful for identifying and fixing left-to-right strength imbalances and is also good for improving your balance too.

Shift your weight over onto one leg and bend your weight-bearing knee slightly for stability. Working your obliques or waist muscles, you should also feel this exercise loading one leg more than the other.

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With your heels pressed firmly into the floor, and without rounding your back, stand up straight. Kettle bell sumo dead lifts emphasize your inner and outer thighs, as well as your glutes.

Step out wide, so your feet are roughly 1 ½ shoulder-widths apart, toes turned slightly outward. Straighten your arms, lift your chest, drop your hips, and push your knees outward.

That’s fine for building strength or muscle size, but not so good for developing power. Power is your ability to generate force at speed and is an essential part of most sports.

The sumo dead lift high pull kettle bell takes a familiar exercise and turns it into an effective power-building move. Step out wide, so your feet are roughly 1½ shoulder-widths apart, toes turned slightly outward.

Straighten your arms, lift your chest, drop your hips, and push your knees outward. Note: You can also do this exercise using a normal dead lift stance and with two kettle bells instead of one.

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Most kettle bell dead lift exercises involve holding your weight down in front of or next to your legs. Kettle bell good mornings still work the same muscles as the other exercises in this article but involve holding the weight in front of your chest.

This is an excellent way to make a light kettle bell feel much heavier. Hold your kettle bell by the vertical handles in front of your chest and just below your chin.

Keeping the weight close to your chest, hinge forward from your hips. Bend your knees slightly, push your butt back, and hinge forward from your hips.

Note: This exercise can also be done with a kettle bell in each hand or using one arm at a time. A few minutes of jogging or jump rope and some dynamic stretches and joint mobility exercises will do the job.

Kettle bells come in a range of weights, sizes, and prices. This is an ideal solution for exercisers who don’t want to buy lots of additional weights.

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Working the same muscles as barbell dead lifts, these seven kettle bell dead lift variations and alternatives will challenge your body and keep you fit, strong, and healthy, all in the comfort of your own home. Whether you usually do barbell dead lifts and can’t or want to learn how to do this crucial exercise properly, kettlebelldeadlifts will help.

I forgot which but Gray Cook and Brett Jones covered that topic in one of FMS DVDs they did together. However, lots of folks, including myself have a good result for the BB DL doing mostly / only heavy KB swings.

The kettle bell can though be a good assistance movement to help your dead lift. Powerlifters uses the cable pull through as an assistance movement to get the posterior chain(glutes, hamstrings,low back)stronger. The kettle bell swing is basically a dynamic version of the pull through and can benefit your DL.

For me specifically the KB two hand swing helps the DL from the knees-up and can be similar to speed dead lifts like the Westside lifters use but for more reps. You do need to use a heavy enough KB to get the proper stimulation. Invest in a good 300 pound only set.

Level 7 Valued Member Elite Certified Instructor That is not to say that there isn't any, but that proper dead lift training becomes exponentially more important.

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Also, after getting to absolutely respectable weights, the kettle bells would have to be pretty heavy and the typical gym range doesn't cover it, and they may become too expensive in the cost-benefit analysis for an amateur. If I can substitute the barbell for kettle bells to do the dead lift, even better--since it seems cheaper priced.

However, once weights get respectable the benefits of the kettle bell get smaller. That is not to say that there isn't any, but that proper dead lift training becomes exponentially more important.

It's in this way that many continue to train the swing even though they have a solid barbell DL. The other thing we have to say, and I say this after watching a couple of hours of YouTube's of Ed Can talking about powerlifting yesterday, is that anything that addresses a potential weakness can improve your lifting, reduce your risk of injury, or both.

The point that I was trying to make was, that even if the swing can substitute the dead lift for some people and some goals, it is absolutely necessary to have the dead lift as your main focus if you're aiming to hit triple body weight or anything past 200 kg. They gave me a great starting point for barbell work.

@jeffandseneca, since you're new, kettle bell swings will cause significant progress in a lot of areas (including the dead lift). If your goal is a “monster” dead lift, you're going to have to dead lift at some point in time (in which case I'll second Steve Grades comment about PTT). But you can save that for after you've experienced your initial “beginner gains”.

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Sources
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2 livehealthy.chron.com - https://livehealthy.chron.com/can-kettlebell-swings-pregnant-7559.html
3 www.chroniclesofstrength.com - https://www.chroniclesofstrength.com/pregnant-yes-can-use-kettlebells/
4 www.shape.com - https://www.shape.com/fitness/videos/kettlebell-exercises-pregnant-women-are-safe-baby
5 www.strongfirst.com - https://www.strongfirst.com/community/threads/kettlebells-and-pregnancy.10331/