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How Much Should My Kettlebell Weight

author
Maria Johnson
• Friday, 06 November, 2020
• 26 min read

You’ve breached the barbells and dominated dumbbells, but if you’re still steering clear of kettle bells you’re missing out on arguably the best burn at the gym. “When performed correctly, all kettle bell exercises are full-body moves, so you’re using more muscles and burning more calories,” says Toronto-based strength coach Chris Lopez, Strongest Level II kettle bell instructor and owner of KettlebellWorkouts.com.

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Contents

Think about a baseball bat, says trainer Jason C. Brown, creator and owner of certification program Kettle bell Athletics. “Kettle bells create a longer lever arm, which requires you to use more force to move an equal weight the same distance,” Brown says.

The dead lift is a multi joint move, so the average guy can probably handle 32 kg/70 lbs here to start, Brown says. Not only are your shoulders and abs working hard to keep you stable, but there’s more challenge to your grip since all the weight is in one hand.

Lopez actually makes clients ace all 14 steps while balancing their shoe on their fist before they’re allowed to try it with a kettle bell (you can opt for a two-pound dumbbell to save face at the gym). When you feel confident that you have the form down sans resistance, reach for a 12 kg/26 lb kettle bell.

Since form is so imperative here, Lopez says you shouldn’t move up a weight until you’re able to maintain perfect vertically with your arm, keep the elbow fully locked throughout all 14 steps, and feel comfortable going slow (most people rush due to discomfort). But because it doesn’t require swinging momentum or extension, a carry has a lower risk of injury than other kettle bell moves, which means you can go a bit heavier.

Grab a kettle bell that’s the equivalent of half your body weight to carry in each hand, Brown recommends. This article will provide you with all the information you need to pick the correct kettlebellweight and perform exercises with proper form.

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And to make things easier for you, we have included a simple 15-minute kettle bell workout video to get you in the best shape of your life. There are a few problems with picking a kettlebellweight depending on your training experience.

I need you to throw away your current perception of weight training, and look at the kettle bell as something new and different. While you may not think you need to, having at least one session with a trained kettle bell professional will make an enormous difference in your results.

You’ll be using multiple muscle groups at the same time through ballistic, full-body movements. A kettle bell professional can show you the basics; like, the Clean, Swing, Goblet Squat, Windmill, and Turkish Get Up.

When performed properly, kettle bell movements will improve your body control, shorten your workout time, and give you functional results (and physique). The core movements in kettle bell training have exploded into hundreds of new exercises and techniques.

When done properly, kettle bell movements will improve your body control, shorten your workout time, and give you functional results (and physique) unlike anything you’ve been able to achieve in the past. A big mistake is selecting a weight that is too light (again, assuming that you have trained with a kettle bell professional).

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Areas of your core (back, abdominal, and upper legs) will be on fire during your first session. To maintain proper form, you need a weight that is in proportion to your skill level, which may be low initially.

Men who have never used a kettle bell are especially susceptible to muscling through a movement, rather than performing it with proper form. You will hear this term used more in CrossFit boxes and by most traditional kettle bell instructors.

Innit Kettle bells are made with a high-quality, chip-resistant coating that’s strong enough to endure your most punishing workouts. 1) A chip-resistant coating, smooth enough for stamina-building work sets without irritating your hands, yet with just enough texture to take gym chalk.

Whether you’re a trainer or fitness enthusiast the kettlebellshould have a place in your training for the results it can deliver in less time. Whether you decide to use your kettle bell to supplement your training or as a stand-alone tool you will gather the exact system on how to do so.

The benefits of the kettle bell are immense and with this single tool one can create incredible strength, power output, and stamina if used to its potential. At the Innit Academy we believe the kettle bell can create powerful athletes regardless of your chosen sport and with this system you will have everything they need to do just that.

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Watch this video on the best starting weight for kettle bell training All kettle bell exercises are based on full body movements so unlike dumbbell training there are no isolation based exercises like bicep curls or tricep extensions.

Kettle bell exercises use 100’s of muscles at a time meaning you are able to lift more weight but also condition the body quicker. The Kettle bell Swing is based on our strongest movement pattern: the Dead lift (see image below).

Whenever you pick something up from the floor you are using the dead lift movement pattern. A light kettle bell will not challenge your full body especially not your powerful hips and legs.

Kettle bells are traditionally available in the following sizes and classified in goods, a Russian weight measurement: The perfect kettlebellweight for women to start with a 8 kg (15lbs) or for those with weight training experience a 12 kg (25lbs).

Remember you should start with those big strong exercises using the dead lift movement patterns for the best results. Trust me, I’ve never trained a lady who has started on anything lower than a 8 kg (15lbs) kettle bell.

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Women will drag suitcases, carry shopping bags or hold children under one arm, you are stronger than you think, so start with at least a 8 kg (15lbs). I have trained men using kettle bells above 24 kg (53lbs) but for the majority of your basics this is as heavy as you will need to go.

Most male beginners will start with either a 12 kg (25lbs) or a 16 kg (35lbs) depending on their weight training background. If you’ve never trained with kettle bells before, choosing the correct weight takes some thought.

Choose heavier weights for swinging or ballistic exercises and strength training. Use lighter weights for slower exercises, sometimes referred to as “grinds,” and cardio workouts.

The American Council on Exercise prefers using lighter weights for their 2010 whole-body kettle bell workout, which includes ballistic, strength, grind and cardio components. As you become more experienced training with kettle bells, progress to heavier weights for ballistic exercises such swings, cleans and snatches.

Experiment a bit to find a weight that allows you to execute the exercise properly. Turkish setups, windmills, shoulder presses or single-arm rows require a lighter weight, usually because you are working more slowly or targeting your arms.

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Whole-body kettle bell exercises, such as the Turkish half-getup, have a lot of moving parts that can go askew if you're using a weight that's too heavy. A trained eye will notice improper positioning or muscle imbalances and can help correct your form or recommend a different kettle bell.

Just like dumbbells, barbells, steel maces, and other weightlifting equipment, there’s no one-size-fits-all with Kettle bells. Different kettle bell sizes will be best for certain genders, ages, exercises, and overall fitness goals.

What is the best Kettle bell size for building muscle, gaining strength, burning fat? It's all organized by sections, so if you want to scroll down to your specific question, it will be easy to find.

Before the end of the 19th century, Russian girl had found its way into the sphere of competitive weightlifting sports in Russia and some parts of Europe while the term, Kettle bell,” was widely adopted at the dawn of the 20th century in the Western world. Unlike the simple structures of Dumbbells and Barbells, Kettle bells have complex, equally-important parts, each of which contributes to its uniqueness.

The anatomy of a Kettle bell, as seen from the above picture, includes the Handle, Corner, Horn, Window, Bell, and Base. The Bell is the center of mass of a Kettle bell while the Window is the space that separates the Handle from the Bell, affording the user convenient and flexible movements that are lacking in Dumbbells and Barbells.

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If you are new to weight training, it's best to start at a beginner level so you can learn proper mechanics. Your age, fitness, and experience determine the type of Kettle bell training you can take-on.

Kettlebell grinds are not only the best for beginners, but they are also very great for experts as its technique is perfect for building muscle and strength. The obtuse shape of the Handle also helps in ensuring a perfect grip and some products now come with a chip-resistant coating that enhances grip and lets users see the weight written on the Kettle bell through contrast.

Note: Although those increments may seem big, a jump from training with 15lbs to 20lbs is normal for kettle bell lifting. For one, it gives users greater flexibility to choose between the wide range of weights and ease scaling-up a bit if they please.

While we’re not sure what your answers to such questions are, and so we may not be able to directly give you the answer to your very personal question of “what size kettle bell is right for me as a beginner,” there are average kettle bell sizes for both male and female beginners and you’re sure to find the best answer for yourself if you continue reading. When we talk about men here, we mean active males starting from the age of 18 years.

The most important thing is an improvement, the ability to fulfill your potentials as your training progresses. It is our professional recommendation that you start with a weight that is proportional to your skill level and fitness.

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This helps you to maintain a good form while you scale up with smiles and less stress. Starting with anything in this range will help you to conveniently learn how to use proper techniques whether you’re training on your own or with a trainer.

Like we mentioned with men, the talk of women here refers to females starting from age 18 years. While we advise everyone to carry just enough weight, some women have been found to underestimate their strengths, opting for Kettle bell sizes that are too small.

A general rule of thumb is for you to carry a Kettlebellweight with which you’re able to do 5 repetitions (reps) of any workout you’re starting with. Also, if you’ve reached a stage whereby you can conveniently do 20 reps of that workout, then it’s the right time for you to pick up something heavier.

The American Academy of Pediatric shad since the year 1990 asserted the potential benefits of monitored weightlifting for children and adolescents on health and athleticism. A kid’s Kettle bell size for a workout will depend on fitness and age.

In the end, it will be the level of fitness that will determine the number of Kettle bell workout reps each child will perform. They can help you build your strength and balance, as well as improve your cardiovascular fitness.

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However, to avoid injuries, if you're a senior just starting a workout with kettle bells, you should use lighter kettle bell weights and as you improve your form and strength, you can gradually increase the kettlebellweight you carry. And it will be wiser for you to focus on cardio-based kettle bell exercises such as swings, squats, cleans, and presses because you're no longer trying to build excessive muscles, but just enough to keep your bones together and covered.

If you have any doubts, be sure to ask your doctor or a physiotherapist about kettle bell training and if it's right for you. No doubt, Kettle bells are one of the best home gym equipment for all age groups.

If you had done some moderate ballistic workouts before, 35LBS is a good start for men and 26LBS is okay for women. When you aim to do lots of slow lifts with the kettle bell and you have never done anything like that before, starting with 22LBS is good for you as a woman while 30LBS for you as a man.

Some people start doing kettle bell workouts because they want to build their size and strength. To build your size and strength using kettle bells, you need to focus on exercises that can give you the most beneficial results.

Additionally, you can include another free- weight equipment in your Kettle bell exercise to get the most out of your workout. Excellent free- weight equipment you can combine with Kettle bells for incredible muscle build-up is the Steel Mace.

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You can learn more about how to get the best out of these two weightlifting equipment from our Steel Mace and Kettle bell Arm Blast Workout. The kettle bell swing is a ballistic exercise that you can use to train your posterior chain muscles and it’s most useful in building your hip power and speed.

To perform the kettle bell swing, you need to move the bell in a pendulum motion from between the knees to anywhere at your eye-level or above it. It isn't as simple as it sounds because improper kettle bell swings just worsen your postural imbalance and cause more damage than good.

However, another thing that can cause more damage than good is using the wrong kettle bell size for your swings? For average active men doing Basic Goblet Squats, the best Kettle bell size is 40LBS.

The Goblet Squat is a typical beginner’s exercise to help new Kettle bell lifters get positional awareness, accumulate basic squat strength and technique, and get a better balance. You can learn more about perfecting your squat by reading our How to Fix Hip Pain article.

The Kettle bell Turkish Get-ups are very useful for developing your solid movement foundation as they tend to focus on your small stabilizing muscles. Not only does it reveal your problems, but it also helps you develop a functional core, serves as a safeguard against back pain and improves your posture.

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Beginners, intermediate and advanced flows exist for individuals fitting each level. It is best to use the Kettle bell size that you are most comfortable with for two to three exercises you want to put into a flow.

Complexes can be done in a sequence or one exercise after the other (i.e. 5 x squats then 5 x presses then 5 x sumo dead lifts, without resting or putting the kettle bell down). Unlike other Kettle bells, their handles and other parts are always of the same shape and dimension regardless of their weights because of the need to maintain consistency in competitions and fairness among competitors.

A kettle bell workout is a great way to tone your body, burn fat, earn some killer abs and keep fit. For average active women, the best Kettle bell sizes for tone-up, burning fat and keeping fit is 18LBS for beginners, with a gradual build-up to 26LBS as you get used to the bells.

For average active men, the best Kettle bell sizes for tone-up, burning fat and keeping fit is 26LBS for beginners, with a gradual build-up to 44LBS. If your goal is to burn fat, you want a weight that you can use with little rest and for HIIT workouts.

This means you should go lighter than what you would use for traditional sets and reps workouts with longer rest. If we had to choose the three overall best Kettle bell sizes, we'd go 26, 35, and 44LBS or 20, 30, and 40lbs, depending on the supplier you buy from.

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It enhances core strength and stability through its multi planar and unilateral movements. It’s the most convenient way to reduce body weight, burning up to 400 calories in 20 minutes.

Kettle bell training is a great workout choice for people of all ages and fitness levels. However, the amount of weight you should use is highly variable depending on a myriad of factors.

Because women have less muscle mass than men, they have different requirements for their kettlebellweight range. That doesn’t mean that kettle bell training isn’t just as effective for women as it is for men.

The kettlebellweightshould a woman use depends on the type of training and the fitness level of the individual. However, the type of kettle bell exercises you do also play a significant role in the kettlebellweight you should use.

Kettle bells are highly effective weights that can fit into almost any workout routine. They can be used for strength training, cardio, and flexibility all with just one compact piece of equipment.

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Additionally, they are highly accessible to people of all ages and ability levels. Whether you’re just starting or you’re looking to amp up your current workouts, kettle bells can work for you.

They are extremely popular because the high intensity workouts give you a lot of exertion in a short amount of time. Once you learn the proper way to use a kettle bell, you can start working every muscle with just one compact device.

Many women fall into the trap of focusing on aerobic exercises and not training your muscles. Kettle bells are a great way to condition and tone your body without “beefing up” too much muscle mass.

If you try to start with a weight that is too light, you can accidentally isolate your muscles and throw off your entire form. While 18 lbs might be too challenging for a beginner in other forms of lifting, with kettle bells you will be learning to use both your upper and lower body at the same time.

If you start with a weight that is too light you will find it harder to progress in your training since you aren’t learning proper form. With that said, starting too heavy can also be damaging to your form and increase the risk of injury.

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However, once you have learned to handle a kettle bell correctly, you will find yourself moving up quickly. Conversely, a woman who has a strong background in other types of weight training could try starting as high as 25 lbs.

The other type is grinds, which tend to isolate certain muscle groups and are done slower to create more tension. The rule of thumb is to pick heavier weights for ballistics, since they are using a larger number of muscles.

Women who are beginning weight training may have different goals than men. A good guideline for when you know you’re ready to move up is when a set of 20 kettle bell swings has become easy and you feel completely confident.

Also, make sure you include the right amount of reps for each workout and have a proper diet plan. Because form is so important in kettle bell training, make sure you are careful not to pick weights that are too light or too heavy.

However, this can adjust depending on your age, fitness level, and type of workout. As part of my FAQ section, I want to help you choose the best weight to start your Kettle bell Training with.

Depending on the source you go, to there will be differing opinions on this, so I am recommending these weights based on how I see many beginners cope and with consideration to the type of training I do here. This is the most vulnerable group, as these individuals need as much focus to be on good form for the exercise, rather than being distracted by the struggle to hold a heavy weight too.

I think some beginners put a lot of stress on themselves to be great, especially those who already train. Strength with Kettle bells takes time to build, and this cannot happen without first understanding what the heck you are doing.

When we become arrogant and proud is when we stand to get hurt the most (which doesn’t just apply to Kettle bells). Once you get the hang of the exercises, your confidence will improve and you will feel happier about using that heavy KB.

So there is no reason to be afraid of weight progression, provided your form is good. Many women often struggle with strength, stability, power and confidence, so these things will be overcome quickly with KB training, provided the correct progressions are made.

I can attest to that personally because I have trained with KB's, in this fashion, for over 2 years now and the only part of me that has become “bigger” is my booty! The high intensity and explosive nature of KB training make it very difficult for you to gain much muscle; instead will get a lot stronger and very well conditioned.

Which translates as “tighter” and “leaner” (provided your diet supports your training goals). This may seem “too safe”, but I have seen many men struggle to complete my workouts with weights they normally find easy.

Men tend to try and progress the weight too rapidly, and they end up not mastering good technique. It just happens that the genders do behave differently around weights, and even more so when there are spectators present.

Many people assume that because they can lift Kg with a Barbell or Dumbbell, that they can go right to the equivalent with a KB. I’d recommend testing your SKILL (not your strength) by choosing one of the lower weights first.

However, women should realistically be using 16 kg regularly as an intermediate and moving on to 20 kg and 24 kg as they advance (depending on the exercise). The advantage of these is that the Bell is fairly compact and can be easily racked by smaller individuals and will not be as likely to get in the way of females’ breasts.

The Competition/Pro Grade Kettle bell (usually more expensive): Made of Hollow Steel, they are all the same size no matter the weight. The advantage of this is that your technique never alters to accommodate a different weight through progression.

Personally I love my Pro-Grades, as they have a very stable base for doing push-ups, renegade rows etc, plus the handles are thinner and smoother than most Standard KB, making grip less of an issue. I recommend sourcing good quality Kettle bells with smooth (single cast are best), rounded handles.

Ballistic (explosive) lifts: swings, cleans, snatches, tossing, juggling. For ballistic lifts you can use a heavier kettle bell than with slow, grinding movements like get-ups and windmills that must be carefully controlled throughout the entire range of movement and require a smaller bell.

Our experience with kettle bells has boiled it down to the following general recommendations for men and women. All cast iron kettle bells such as the Matrix Elite precision e-coat series change dimensions, including handle diameter, as the weight increases or decreases.

As with men, for controlled, grinding movements like Turkish Get-ups and windmills you should choose a kettle bell that you can easily press overhead about 8-10 times. Single Cast Mold With No Seams, Ridges or Rough Spots.

A quality kettle bell is cast in a single step into the mold and is finished like a piece of fine furniture. Competition or “Pro Grade” kettle bells are made to fixed specifications.

To find out more about the differences between cast iron and competition kettle bells click here. Real kettle bells are designed to be balanced in a certain way, and they are actually precise tools.

If a kettle bell can be improved by new materials or a new engineering insight or manufacturing process so that real users will benefit then we will do so, however, we are not interested in gimmicks that are solely designed to misinform consumers and take their hard-earned money from them. We have been in the kettle bell business for some years now, and we will not compromise our principles just to make money off innocent, uninformed consumers.

Without proper kettle bell lifting technique you will not get the full benefit of the movement and you greatly increase your chance of injury, and this defeats the purpose of training with kettle bells in the first place. We recommend that whether you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced lifter, that you have a few kettle bells in different weights.

Also, the high leverage lifts such as Turkish Get-ups, Windmills and Bottoms-up presses, require less weight especially when you are first learning them so having a range of kettle bell weights will give you the required training flexibility need to progress. If your budget can handle it then buy at least two kettle bells to start with in different weights and then add to your collection as your form gets better and your conditioning level increases.

Some other aspects of kettle bell design are grip diameter, grip width, ball diameter, the distance from the top of the ball to the bottom of the handle. Despite their versatility, kettle bells have one primary drawback: the gap in available sizes presents a significant increase in weight.

I will lay out a set of guidelines to help you determine when you are ready to make a jump and how to do so safely. Increasing your weight in each area requires a different strategy and set of criteria.

These criteria are not set in stone and do not need to be completely satisfied to safely size up. Your primary criteria should be the ability to demonstrate smooth proficiency and feel a sense of ease with your current selection of kettle bells.

These strategies focus on introducing the next weight at a pace that allows your body to adapt to the increased load. They utilize scaled versions of the desired movements, sets with low repetitions, and structured rest intervals.

The aim is to allow your body to feel the demand of the new challenge with ample recovery to maintain your form and composure. These guidelines seek to determine the level of proficiency with which you can both move and stabilize the weight overhead.

If you pass the above or similar tests, you can feel confident in sizing up. Begin by developing the ability to control and stabilize the new weight overhead.

Pull ups and rows add a perfect accessory compliment to high volume pressing for maximal strength gain. If you are a competent swinger, playing with a heavier weight will not only make you stronger and more explosive, but will also force you to maintain perfect form in the areas that you might have slacked.

These guidelines aim to determine the proficiency in your swing form, and your ability to maintain it. If you pass the above tests and/or feel a sense that you can smoothly move your bell for extended sets or complexes, you can feel confident and safe in swinging a larger bell.

You have my permission to simply try a few swings with a heavier bell, no other preparation (except a proper warm up) required. The rule of thumb is to begin with low repetition and ample rest.

This movement pattern is nearly identical to your swing form and will allow you to adapt to moving the heavier bell. Stay in the bottom position and simply let the bell pendulum forward.

You can perform these as single repetitions by allowing the bell to rest on the ground between swings or link multiple repetitions together by actively pulling the bell back as its begins to swing toward you. The focus of these workouts is to allow you to feel the new weight in a challenging yet safe manner.

To create your own, use the guideline: low repetitions and structured rest. You want to challenge yourself to continue moving, yet allow ample rest to maintain your form.

Other Articles You Might Be Interested In

01: Proper Form For Kettlebell Deadlift
02: Proper Form For Kettlebell Swing
03: Proper Technique For Kettlebell Swing
04: Names For Kettlebell Classes
05: Name For Kettlebell
Sources
1 en.wikipedia.org - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kettlebell
2 parade.com - https://parade.com/1137500/korinmiller/best-kettlebells/