I have also added a section on kettlebellworkouts for men in order to know how to use these kettle bell exercises most effectively. However, the kettle bell exercises that I have included below have a much deeper focus on the upper body than any others so if your goals are to add muscle to this area then these are for you.
The kettle bell halo is an important exercise because it opens up and mobilizes the shoulders and upper back. I recommend that you master and open up the joints with a lighter kettle bell before increasing the weight.
Using a heavy kettle bell incorrectly will only add to neck and shoulder issues rather than correcting them. The kettle bell regular row will add muscle to the mid back, lats, core musculature and biceps.
It is important to keep the back flat throughout this exercise and the core braced nice and tight. Row the kettle bell straight up as if your elbow is being pulled back and towards the ceiling.
Don’t rush through the exercise, the lowering part of the movement is just as important as the row. Keep your weight back on your heels throughout the exercise and load the hamstrings.
The kettle bell half Turkish get up will develop strong stabilization in the shoulders as well as excellent core strength. Overhead pressing, as mentioned later, is important for building big, strong shoulders but without good stabilization strength there can be a potential for injury.
Practicing and working through the half Turkish get up will build the foundation you require for future lifts. Keep your kettle bell arm straight and heels in contact with the floor throughout the entire exercise.
Return slowly to the floor by using your core muscles, 5 seconds down is a good guideline. Practice 3 – 5 slow reps without putting the kettle bell down before changing sides.
From a half kneeling position with the back knee on the floor press the kettle bell overhead. Keep your buttocks pinched tight and core muscles braced as you press.
Working from a half kneeling position will focus the press directly into the shoulders and leave no room for cheating. The kettle bell push press is an excellent exercise for building strength and size in the shoulders and upper body.
As you press the kettle bell overhead use your legs slightly just to add a little momentum to the lift. The bottom part of the lift is always the most challenging so adding a slight knee bend before driving the kettle bell overhead will give you a mechanical advantage.
The kettle bell push press is great for lifting heavier weights that get stuck in the bottom position or when you start to fatigue and you want to complete a few final repetitions. Keep your weight back on your heels and try to prevent the knees from caving in towards the cent reline as you squat.
Make sure that you squat so your thighs reach parallel with the floor to engage your buttocks correctly. Shallow squats will only develop the legs and can produce muscle imbalances.
Those comfortable with the goblet squat can practice holding two kettle bells, one in each hand against the chest in the racked position. The kettle bell single arm dead lift will develop strength, and size in the legs, hips, glutes, back and core muscles.
Keep your weight back on your heels and feel the hamstrings and buttocks engage as you lift. The kettle bell racked reverse lunge is the ultimate leg and buttock developer.
When squats and dead lifts start to get too easy with the weights that you have available then switching to the kettle bell lunge is a great progression. The depth of the lunge is important to fully activate the buttocks, the back knee should drop as close to the floor as possible.
If you find you start to wobble during this exercise then bracing your core muscles should help to stabilize the movement. The kettle bell pistol squat is a very challenging movement that will develop strong legs, buttocks, core muscles, mobility and cardio.
For those new to the pistol squat then practice without a kettle bell first and using a band or Tax attached in front of you for support. Descend into the bottom of the pistol squat slowly before pausing for a few seconds and then driving back up to the top position.
Adding a kettle bell to the exercise will help with counterbalance but also load the shoulders and back muscles. You will need good hip mobility and inner thigh flexibility in order to perform this exercise well.
The kettle bell double lunge is a tough exercise that will overload the legs, hips, buttocks and core muscles while working your cardio at the same time. Be sure to drop as deep as possible with both lunges and keep your chest and head up.
The kettle bell exercises for men listed below will activate most of the muscles in your body. There is a huge amount of muscle activation with these full body exercises so you can expect a quick increase in your heart rate as it challenges your cardio.
The kettle bell swing will activate most of the muscles in your body, test your cardio and improve your posture. The movement of the kettle bell is generated by the aggressive thrust of the hips forwards with a tightening of the buttocks.
With the kettle bell at the top of the swing the body should be fully upright with the glutes tight and abs braced. You can practice a quick workout of 10 reps, rest and repeat for 10 circuits.
The kettle bell thruster will strengthen most of the muscles in the body while at the same time challenging your cardio. Start with a regular racked squat before driving the floor away from you with your feet and using the momentum to press the kettle bell overhead.
Note that this exercise should be performed in a fluid movement with a pause between the squat and the overhead press. Again squat depth is very important to ensure the buttocks are activated fully and you should be aware of the possibility of cheating as you start to fatigue.
If your shoulder starts to ache then you can use your opposite hand to help hold the kettle bell in the racked position during the bottom portion of the squat. You begin the exercise with a kettle bell clean which is an explosive movement that activates the legs, hips, buttocks and back.
You will find that you can lift heavier weights with the clean part of the exercise than the press. This kettle bell exercise for men is fast and dynamic and requires good coordination and timing.
Care should be taken when practicing the high pull because beginners often collapse at the wrist and the kettle bell can travel towards the face. As with many of these kettle bell exercises for men be sure to stand tall at the top of the movement and squeeze the buttocks tight.
The kettle bell snatch activates the muscles throughout the entire body in a very explosive way. The snatch is an advanced exercise that needs good explosive hips and timing.
The most common problem beginners have with the snatch is the kettle bell flopping over at the top of the movement and banging the wrist. The kettle bell should also travel close to the body on the way up rather than looping around as if a continuation on from the swing.
Throw your hands forwards to gain momentum and allow you to get your hips underneath you before standing back up again. The single leg dead lift using 2 kettle bells is a great way to overload the hamstrings, glutes core and back without the need for very heavy weights.
Keep the reps low (5) and descend slowly to a count of 3 to benefit from the eccentric loading part of the movement. It goes without saying that you should have first mastered all the individual parts of this exercise, the clean, squat, and overhead press.
You can rest momentarily after each rep by returning the kettle bells to the ground or use your stretch reflex at the bottom of the movement to go straight into a second repetition. This kettle bell exercise for men first requires you to hold a good solid front plank both on two hands and one.
With both hands on the kettle bell handles row the one arm backwards pulling through the elbow towards the ceiling. The hips should stay perfectly inline with the body while preforming the exercise and the buttocks should be squeezed tight.
Care should be taken to use the correct type of kettle bell to prevent them from rolling to the side and crushing your fingers on the floor. Beginners can practice this exercise by using just one kettle bell and having the other hand on a box, Paraclete or bench.
Simply put you will be performing fast alternating kettle bell cleans, one up one down. For those men who are more advanced you can add a 4th exercise to the list from the Double kettle bells category.
There are of course many other kettle bell exercises available but these are the ones that will activate 100’s of muscles per movement therefore increasing your metabolism, growth hormone and challenge your cardio. Unlike other forms of exercise you should be careful not to overdo it, just a short workout 3-5 times per week is enough for most people.
Many kettle bell exercises train the full body in one movement including the swing, snatch, clean and press, Turkish get up and more. An open space filled with heavy iron, benches, cable setups, and if you're in a big box, plenty of cardio stations and machines.
Most of the weights are probably barbells, both on squat platforms and benches, or dumbbells, sitting stacked along the wall on a rack. Kettle bells are some of the most versatile, efficient tools you can have in your exercise repertoire—and as this year proved, people love them and consider them essential.
Click here to join to access even more top-level fitness tips. Thanks to the implement's unique shape, which places the rounded load beneath the handle, kettle bells are perfect for swings, presses, and carries from different positions that you wouldn't attempt with dumbbells. You can work your arms, of course, but also your legs, chest, back, core, posterior chain—really, you can use kettle bells to train your whole body.
You get the same unilateral capabilities you get with a dumbbell, and the shape of the kettle bell make them an even better option for single-arm, multi-joint movements like cleans and snatches. There's also an entirely distinct training modality that has gained popularity thanks to the utility of kettle bells: the flow.
The front rack can be used for moves like squats, lunges, walks—really anything focused on your lower body. Using either one or two kettle bells, you'll hold the load in such a way (demonstrated above) that you'll be forced to engage your core to prevent your torso from tipping over.
This simple, incredibly effective movement is a great way to build shoulder stability while working the core. Try the exercise for 10 to 20 reps per side to start before adding extra features, like the kneeling position in the video or even a squat, for more of a metabolic impact.
Goblet Pulse Squat Crush your legs with a little bounce with this dynamic exercise. Your upper body will get a challenge, too, since you'll be using your arms and bracing your core to keep the kettle bells in the racked position.
Try 3 to 4 sets of 10 reps, lowering down into position slowly and pausing at the bottom to create a ton of tension. Turkish Getup This multi-part movement takes some time and coordination to master, but it's an effective full body exercise once you nail every step.
Keep the weight light to start (run through the first few times without any), then add heavier loads as you progress. Make sure to keep the weight controlled as you clean into the racked position before pressing straight up.
If you're bold, set a timer for 5 to 10 minutes, then alternate 5 reps per arm for the whole period. Perform 4 sets of 12 reps of all or any of the moves individually, or hit them back-to-back as a circuit with no rest as a workout that will torch your whole body.
This short workout uses four full body moves to torch off calories—so you'll be feeling its effects for a lot longer than it takes to finish the routine itself. 30:60:90 Bodywork Blast your body with this intense interval ladder from trainer Hannah Eden.
Take the longer approach with this routine designed to ramp up your metabolic conditioning. Brett Williams, NASA Brett Williams, a fitness editor at Men's Health, is a NASM-CPT certified trainer and former pro football player and tech reporter who splits his workout time between strength and conditioning training, martial arts, and running.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. One major advantage that kettle bells have over dumbbells is that you don’t need a wide range of weight increments to create a workout with them.
Note that, unlike what you see in most kettlebellworkouts, we’re not having you do the Turkish getup and full swing—even though we’re well aware that they’re two of the most popular kettle bell exercises. Rather, we’ve modified these exercises to more user-friendly—but still supremely challenging—versions that will allow someone of any experience level to train safely and with optimal form.
Use this routine to build strength and burn fat now, and develop the requisite stability and mobility to graduate to more advanced exercises at a later date. When you’ve completed the entire circuit, rest 1–2 minutes, and then repeat for 3 total rounds.
Take a deep breath into your belly and twist your feet into the ground (imagine screwing them down without actually moving them) and squat, keeping your torso upright. Place the kettle bell on the floor and take a staggered stance with your right foot in front.
Rest your right elbow on your right thigh for support and reach for the kettle bell with your left hand. Stand tall holding the kettle bell in one hand at shoulder level.
TIP: “Don’t get fixated on achieving a full overhead lockout right away,” says John Wolf, Innit’s Chief Fitness Officer. “Just going to where your elbow is bent 90 degrees and holding it isometrically is a ton of work for most people.” If you need to arch your back, causing your ribs to flare in order to lock out your arm overhead, you’re not training the shoulder effectively.
Stand with feet between hip and shoulder-width apart and hold the kettle bell by its horns, pulling the bottom of the bell into your lower sternum. Draw your shoulder blades together and down (“proud chest”) and cast your eyes on a spot on the floor approximately 15 feet in front of you.
When you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, extend your hips and squeeze your glutes, tucking your tailbone under as you lock out. Stand with feet between hip and shoulder-width apart and hold the kettle bell by its horns upside down—the bell should face up.
Begin moving the kettle bell around your head, being careful to maintain your posture and not bend your torso in any direction. Set up as you did for the shoulder halo but hold the kettle bell by the handle at arm’s length and make circles around your hips.
Plus, a 15-minute kettle bell workout is great for burning plenty of calories in minimal time. Picking up a kettle bell mimics the motions of your everyday life, whether it’s grabbing luggage, dishes from a cabinet, or those same things the kids left lying around the house.
You can do a kettle bell workout in minimal space, and it’ll make you feel more primal than throwing around dumbbells. Kettle bells look like they’d be at home in the Middle Ages—so you can channel your inner William Wallace even if you’re just minutes away from driving the carpool in a minivan.
Pete Williams is a NASM-certified personal trainer and the author or co-author of a number of books on performance and training.