People spend a lot of time using different forms of exercise to reach their goals, such as losing fat, building muscle or working to improve or maintain fitness levels. This was confirmed by a study directly comparing the two-handed kettle bell swing with modern intensity treadmill walking (Thomas et al. 2014).
Whilst the movements involved in kettle bell training act as a cardio exercise, the fact that a weight is being lifted at the same time, also works your muscles. Studies have found that this form of exercise improves power, endurance (Pinocchio, 2010) and maximum strength (Lake and Lauder, 2012).
Another advantage of working and strengthening your muscles is that it increases your metabolism, meaning you can burn fat all day after your workout. This combination of cardio and strength training, allows you to get the best of both worlds and reap the benefits that both offer in one challenging kettle bell workout.
Another specific benefit of kettle bell movements is that these can work all of your major muscle groups at once and can achieve remarkable results in less time. The high number of calories that can be burned with this training is accredited to it being a total body movement exercise (Forward, 2010).
In this way, it is hailed as being superior to other kinds of weight training, due to forcing your body to work as a unit with every swing or lift. As kettle bell training involves a lot of movement, it is important to perform the exercises correctly, ensuring your back is straight, shoulders are relaxed and head is in a neutral position.
This is a remarkable advantage of kettle bell training, as having a strong core is important in everyday life, particularly for balance and posture. Osteoarthritis is the most common kind of arthritis, which is caused by the breakdown of cartilage that the body eventually cannot repair, often in older age.
A study found that joints subjected to heavy impact are relatively free of osteoarthritis in older age (Verkhoshansky and Sight, 1998). Thus, the ballistic exercises using a kettle bell, such as the swing, snatch, jerk and clean, appear to be highly beneficial and strength your joints, promoting protection against osteoarthritis in older age.
Making lifestyle changes, such as incorporating regular exercise into your routine along with a healthy diet, can keep your heart and arteries in good condition and reduce blood pressure and its associated risks. Studies have found that kettle bell training can be a good form of exercise, which can lower blood pressure (Jay, 2009).
With it being both a cardio and strength workout, it can assist in the control of and help to prevent high blood pressure, and therefore reduce the dangers to your health. Whilst it does promote a healthy lifestyle, if you do have high blood pressure, always ask for advice from your doctor first before you start any new physical regime.
There has been an increase in the number of adults developing Type 2 Diabetes, due to living an unhealthy lifestyle and being overweight. Whilst there is no cure for Type 2 Diabetes, blood glucose levels can be managed to minimize the risk of health problems that can develop.
In particular, a recent study found that kettle bell training could improve glucose clearance in young, sedentary males (Greenwald, 2014). In conclusion, training with kettle bells is advantageous not only in meeting individual fitness goals but also in protecting against medical conditions.
The workout gets your heart pumping and uses up to 20 calories per minute: about as much as running a 6-minute mile. Buy a DVD or sign up for a kettle bell class at the gym to learn how to do the moves safely.
It won’t take long to understand why celebrities like Jennifer Aniston, Jessica Biel, and Katherine Hall are huge fans of kettle bell workouts. You ’ll work up a sweat doing a series of fast-paced cardio and strength-training moves like kettle bell swings, lunges, shoulder presses, and push-ups.
Most kettle bell workouts include squats, lunges, crunches, and other moves that work your abs and other core muscles. The kettle bell is used as a weight for arm exercises like single-arm rows and shoulder presses.
Lunges and squats are among the most popular moves in a kettle bell workout. Your tush will be toned by using the kettle bell for added weight during lunges and squats.
Using a kettle bell for a dead lift helps tone your back muscles. The kettle bell is an effective weight that will build muscle strength.
You may want to buy DVDs or sign up for classes to learn the basics of a kettle bell workout. Yes, if you take a class or pick a DVD that's for beginners and use a lighter kettle bell.
Depending on the program, you may be getting both your strength training and your aerobic workout at the same time. If you choose a kettle bell that is too heavy or if you have poor form, you are likely to lose control of it.
Start out with an experienced trainer who can correct your technique before you hurt something. Adding a kettle bell to your existing workout is great if you want to burn more calories in less time.
This type of high-intensity workout is not for you if you would rather do a more meditative approach to body sculpting, or if sweating isn’t your thing. With your doctor’s OK, you can include kettle bells in your fitness routine if you have diabetes.
Muscle burns energy more efficiently, so your blood sugar levels will go down. Depending on the workout, you may also get some cardio to help prevent heart disease.
Using kettle bells in your workout puts some serious demands on your hips and back, as well as your knees, neck, and shoulders. If you have arthritis or pain in your knees or back, then look for a less risky strength-training program.
If you have other physical limitations, ask an experienced instructor for advice on how to modify your workout. If you worked out with kettle bells before becoming pregnant and are not having any problems with your pregnancy, then you will likely be able to continue using them -- at least for a while.
Talk to your instructor and your doctor; they might suggest switching out your kettle bells during your last trimester. Sources American Council on Exercise: “Exclusive ACE research examines the benefits of kettle bells.”
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You ’ll have an easier time performing daily activities Working out with a kettle bell is the definition of what fitness pros call a “functional” workout. We bet your purse or work bag will feel a lot of lighter after a few kettle bell sessions anyway!
You ’ll fire up more muscles One of the biggest mistakes novices make with kettle bell training is not taking a session or two with a certified trainer. Sure, you can hold the weight in front of your chest as you do squats or lunges or use it to do arm curls, but if that’s all you do, you ’ll be missing out on all the incredible three-dimensional movements it’s made for—and the effects those exercises can have on your body.
Seaman recommends going beyond walking or jogging to get your cardiovascular system and your muscles and joints loosened up. She recommends doing some shoulder rolls, squats, lunges, plank holds or push-ups (on knees, if necessary), and jumping jacks before starting the kettle bell portion of your workout.
You ’ll lose more weight in less time Kettle bell workouts can tighten and tone your whole body, but the dynamic all-muscles-on-deck movements also burn a heck of a lot of calories—on par with running a 6-minute mile, according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse, who evaluated the energy output of a typical kettle bell session. You ’ll realize you ’re stronger than you thought You might have never reached for a dumbbell heavier than 5 pounds before, but Seaman suggests women start with a 15-pounder and a 25- to 30-pounder when you switch to kettle bells.
Your posture will improve Using so many muscle groups in conjunction means your core has to stay engaged 360 degrees to stabilize each and every movement. Good form is essential in kettle bell workouts, so stop and rest if you feel like yours is deteriorating.
The number one thing to keep in mind is that the whole structure of your back and abs should unconsciously stay straight, as though you ’re wearing a stiff corset. Any forward bending you do should come from your hips or the crease at the top of your leg, rather than from an arched back.
Signals that you need to stop your workout include feeling like you can’t hold onto the kettle bell securely (hint: skip the hand lotion preworkout) or your arm shaking excessively in an over-the-head position. Here’s how to do it: Standing with your feet hip-width apart, your hips and knees slightly bent, and your back and arms straight, pick up the kettle bell by the handle with both hands, knuckles facing forward.
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