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Is Kettlebell Exercise Good

author
Earl Hamilton
• Wednesday, 23 December, 2020
• 29 min read

Kettlebellexercise is one such exercise that requires kettle bells and that helps in burning calories, building flexibility of the body and in several other ways. These kettle bells come in different weights and you can make use of these equipments as you do lunges, shoulder presses, and lifts.

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Contents

The kettle bell workouts get your heart pumping and are quite beneficial in burning calories, offering body flexibility and many other things. Kettle bell exercises mostly targets areas like the core, arms, glutes, legs, and back.

These kettle bells come in weights that range from 5-100 pounds and you can purchase them from sporting goods stores or from online retailers. There is a short review of research on kettle bell exercises that teaches about some workouts and its benefits.

Kettle bell exercises stimulate an incredible amount of abdominal contraction because of their explosive conditioning movements. The abdominal contraction along with coordinated breathing offers quite a high level of conditioning that actually has made kettle bells popular among athletes and fighters.

In one study there was absolutely clear evidence of some effective positive changes in cardiovascular health from kettle bell exercises. This in turn forces the muscles that are most responsible for the breathing process to play an even higher role in the cardiovascular health.

They also enable you for increasing your strength and building up speed and also your endurance levels simultaneously. The first thing that must be kept in mind is that your entire back and abs remain absolutely straight.

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Most physical therapists value these exercises because they teach us to move in a better, stronger, and a safer way. Kettle bell exercises help you build powerful forearms and also improves your grip.

Moreover, such exercises also allow you to devote your attention towards your skill, strategy, rest and recovery. But, in the last decade or so, they’ve seen a resurgence in popularity, not least because they are a part of so many CrossFit workouts.

Of all the exercises you can do with a kettle bell, the swing is arguably the most popular and may even be the most valuable. Many fitness enthusiasts believe that squats and dead lifts are the kings of exercise.

But Tim Ferris says “the two armed kettle bell swing is the king and is all you need for dramatic body recomposition results”. This post will reveal the main kettle bell swing benefits and how to do them correctly.

It takes time to master the kettle bell swing, but once you’ve got it nailed, this exercise has a wide range of benefits. These muscles are crucial for better posture, as well as improved sports performance.

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Increased cardiovascular fitness Kettle bell swing training is excellent for your heart and lungs, as well as your muscles. Because they are a full-body movement, kettle bell swings will drive your heart and breathing rate sky-high, which makes them a beneficial and challenging cardiovascular exercise.

Better posture Kettle bell swings are one of the best exercises for undoing the effects of prolonged sitting. Swings work your posterior chain, which are the muscles responsible for holding you upright against the pull of gravity.

Because kettle bell swings involve so many muscles and joints working together and at the same time, there’s a lot that can go wrong with this exercise. But, if you master a proper kettle bell swing, you can enjoy all the benefits this exercise has to offer while avoiding all the risks.

Standing with your feet about shoulder-width apart, pull your shoulders down and back, and brace your abs. Focus on your hip drive to pop the kettle bell upwards, not your arms.

Russian kettle bell swings generally allow you to lift more weight, and they are easier to learn. However, it’s all too easy to inadvertently shorten your rep range by not swinging the weight high enough, i.e., below shoulder-height.

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Swinging the weight up until the arms are vertical ensures that each rep is the same, making them easier to judge and quantify. However, raising the weight so high will increase stress on the lower back, which could lead to injury.

The increased range of movement also means you won’t be able to lift as much weight. But, unless you are training for CrossFit competitions, the Russian swing is potentially the safer one, which may mean it’s the best choice for most exercisers.

As recommended by the American Council on Exercise, ACE for short, this kettle bell workout is best done three times a week on non-consecutive days, e.g., Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. With this workout, you do a set of kettle bell swings at the start of each minute, and whatever time is left over is for resting.

Kettle bell cleans and snatches come close, but they are much trickier to master. Whether you want to burn fat, get fit, or boost your dead lift performance, kettle bell swings will help.

Tour any modern gym and you're bound to stumble upon a section littered with kettle bells. It is unclear as to when kettle bells officially became a recognized tool for strength and conditioning, however it's estimated their history dates back over 300 years.

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Known as a “girl” in Russia, kettle bells were originally used to help balance scales while weighing crops. The man most notable for Westernizing the kettle bell is Pavel Tsatsouline, chairman of Strongest Inc. and former PT drill instructor for Smetana.

Tsatsouline's authored several books that outline simple but effective kettle bell training programs. Entire workouts can be executed with nothing more than a single kettle bell, whether the aim is strength, hypertrophy, power or endurance.

A kettle bell is relatively small (though I dare not say it's “light,” as that all depends on the weight you select) and relatively affordable in comparison to most other gym equipment. Compared to training with machines or even dumbbells, the kettle bell provides variability and offsets the load so that no one rep is ever truly the same.

Every piece of equipment brings something unique to the table, and every person is different, so it's foolish to speak in definitive. Barbells make it easy for a newbie to load a movement heavier than they can handle in a fixed position.

A perfect example is that of a Barbell Bench Press, where the hands are pronated and the shoulders are inherently placed in an internally rotated position. Kettle bells are a great option to keep an individual's load lower while growing their movement competency.

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It targets the posterior chain and teaches individuals how to hip hinge properly with some force. This exercise involves holding the kettle bell with both hands (although single-arm and double-bell variations do exist) and using the hip hinge to forcefully drive it out in front of yourself.

Your gripping muscles may eventually burn if the set is long or enough or the weight's heavy enough, but your arms and shoulders should essentially contribute no power to the movement. Once the Kettle bell Swing is mastered, it is an excellent addition to any program or a convenient stand-alone option for a conditioning day.

Its goal is simple: Stand from a supine position while keeping a weight over your head. However, that simple act requires a lot of technique, shoulder stability, core strength, hip mobility and focus to execute effectively.

There are also many scenarios where replacing a classic barbell or dumbbell exercise with a kettle bell version can make sense. It might seem like an insignificant swap, but kettle bells naturally lead to better scapular position, making the move more effective and reducing wear and tear on your body.

Undoubtedly the kettle bell is an extraordinary tool with a long history of producing excellent results. Kettle bells, which look like cannonballs with handles, have become a popular strength training alternative to traditional barbells, dumbbells, and resistance machines.

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(Source: healthfully.com)

Kettle bell exercises often involve several muscle groups at once, making them a highly effective way to give your arms, legs, and abs a great workout in a short amount of time. Kettle bells can be used for a variety of exercises that improve both your strength and cardiovascular fitness.

Russian strongmen in the 1700s developed kettle bells as implements to build strength and endurance. You’ve probably seen depictions of bare-chested carnival strongmen hoisting them over their heads.

Using lighter kettle bells at first allows you to focus on using the proper form and technique for the different exercises. You can always increase the weight once you’re comfortable with the correct form for each exercise.

Fitness experts suggest using kettle bells with the following weights if you’re at an intermediate to advanced level with your strength training: Aim to add more reps each week, then work toward adding more sets as you build strength.

Push your hips backward, and bend your knees to reach the kettle bell handles. Firmly grip the kettle bells, keeping your arms and back straight.

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This is an excellent exercise to boost both your muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness. While your shoulders and arms will do a lot of the work, most of the effort should come from the hips and legs.

Engage your abdominal muscles and set your shoulders back. Exhale as you make an explosive upward movement to swing the kettle bell out in front of you.

Squats are an excellent lower-body exercise that work your quads, hamstrings, calves, glutes, as well as your abdominal muscles. Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed out slightly.

Using your leg muscles, with your upper body still, straighten up to your starting position. With both hands around the handle, hold the kettle bell close to your chest.

Alternatively, you can hold a kettle bell by the handle in one or both hands, with your arms at your sides. Slowly step forward with your left leg, bending your knee while keeping your right foot in place.

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A great exercise for working your abs and obliques (the muscles on the sides of your abdomen that run from your hips to your ribs), the Russian twist can also be done with a weighted medicine ball or barbell plate. When using a kettle bell, be sure to keep a firm grip so that you don’t drop it on your lap.

Holding the kettle bell handle with both hands, lean back so that your torso is at about a 45-degree angle to the floor. With your heels a few inches above the floor, rotate your torso from right to left, swinging the kettle bell slightly across your body.

When you’ve completed your repetitions, return to your starting position. When your chest is even with the kettle bell handles, exhale and push your body back up to its starting position.

Hold a kettle bell by the handle so that it rests against the outside part of your shoulder. There are many benefits to working out with kettle bells, for both men and women, across all age groups.

According to a 2019 study, a kettle bell workout is a highly effective way to improve your strength, aerobic power, and overall physical fitness. Compared to resistance circuit-based training, the same study found that a regular kettle bell workout is just as effective at improving cardiorespiratory fitness and muscle strength.

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(Source: www.bodybuilding.com)

A 2013 study reported that participants who completed an 8-week kettle bell training session saw noticeable improvements in their aerobic capacity. Kettle bell exercises have the ability to restore muscle mass and improve grip strength in older adults, according to a 2018 study.

According to Harvard Health, kettle bell exercises can also help improve your posture and balance. You typically use your core muscles more with kettle bell exercises than with dumbbells or barbells.

If possible, ask a certified personal trainer at your local gym or fitness center to show you the proper form for kettle bell exercises. Stop immediately if you feel sudden or sharp pain.

A little mild soreness after a workout is normal, but you shouldn’t feel sudden, sharp pain while working out. Kettle bells can take a little getting used to, but working out with them is a highly effective way of improving your muscle strength and cardio fitness.

For those out there who aren’t confident in doing kettle bell workouts due to the high intensity and expected grip strength, don’t turn away yet! Our patented Dark Iron Fitness lifting straps are made of durable cowhide suede and are the perfect accompaniment to kettle bells.

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Their numerous benefits include strength gain, endurance, flexibility and weight loss. Many of the movements and skills required in CrossFit focus on learning to have fast and effective hips.

Dumbbells have a tight center of gravity and mainly utilize the major muscle groups. A kettle bell ’s odd shape and off-center mass forces you to use muscles that mimic real-life activities.

Its odd center of gravity forces you to do more work involving your stabilizing muscles to create explosive movements with the bell. Enjoy the ease of use and appreciate that such a unique weight can help streamline other exercises you already do.

Always practice correct form and safety in all exercises, but be content in the fact the kettle bell is one of the safer weights to work with. If you have previously been avoiding barbell exercises due to safety concerns, look into the kettle bell alternatives.

The kettle bell alternates periods of intense contraction and controlled relaxation, to give you a superior workout that combines strength, as well as endurance. Other exercises such as the windmill, and single leg dead lift, also build flexible strength.

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(Source: www.thehealthsciencejournal.com)

The kettle bell stimulates tremendous abdominal contraction because of the explosive conditioning movements. The fact you can work your core indirectly, just through the dynamic aspect of kettle bells, is truly amazing.

They enable you to increase your strength, build up speed as well as your endurance level at the same time. This gives you a great strength and endurance workout in a shorter amount of time.

So rather than moving on to a heavier kettle bell you simply complete more reps or change the exercise to a more difficult option. Killer strength and endurance work can be achieved without necessarily having to use the heaviest weight you can find.

This is especially valued by physical therapists because kettle bells actually teach you to move in a way that is better, stronger, and safer. Unfortunately, many of us today lose some of our basic movements as a result of sedentary occupations and lifestyles.

That’s what happens when we don’t move our bodies with the full range of motion or become used to certain unhealthy postures (like sitting in front of a computer all day). They are terrific for overall fat loss, improving lean body mass, and helping teach proper use of the hips (important for speed and power sports).

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When used correctly, kettle bells are extremely effective training tools for providing total-body strength and conditioning. As with any technical movement, lift, or skill, proper coaching is required to maximize the benefits.

It's a two-for-one exercise, meaning you're able to combine strength training and cardiovascular conditioning into one efficient movement. Though it looks easy to perform, the swing can take a significant amount of time, practice, and coaching to perfect.

It teaches you to move fluidly, and when you add the external load (a kettle bell) it requires strength, mobility, and skilled movement. It's a powerful full-body exercise that requires attention to detail and a respect for human movement.

The unique shape of a kettle bell and offset handle allow you to press in the natural plane of motion relative to your shoulder joint. You just feel like you have more power to press efficiently with a kettle bell, mostly because of the more natural plane of motion.

Similar to the kettle bell swing, the clean is another explosive exercise for total-body strength and conditioning. The difference here is that the kettle bell finishes in the rack position as opposed to being projected horizontally away from your body.

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The kettle bell snatch is physically demanding and technical, but offers outstanding total-body strength and conditioning benefits. It can help transcend athletic performance to new levels, build explosive strength, and forge strong, powerful shoulders.

The snatch requires proper technique, explosive hip power, and athleticism. This exercise should not be attempted until the kettle bell swing hip-hinge pattern and explosive hip drive are established.

Though watching videos is helpful, the best way to learn how to correctly do these challenging movements is to work with a certified kettle bell instructor. In today’s world we spend the majority of our days doing things in front of us with terrible posture.

This overuse of the muscles on the front side of our bodies is called “anterior dominance” and it is plaguing our society. Anterior dominance results in imbalances in our muscles causing us to move and perform at sub-optimal levels.

It will allow you to loosen your tight hips and strengthen your butt so that you’ll develop the rear end of an athlete. It will bulletproof your low back by creating an armored brace around your midsection, and it will get rid of that paunchy gut.

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Push your hips back keeping your butt high and bend your knees slightly. Always making sure your shoulders stay above the level of your hips, “hike pass” the kettle bell through your knees by contracting your lats.

When you push your hips back keeping your butt high and your shins vertical, you are hinging. This is good because most people today are hip flexor and quad dominant (your anterior muscles), so learning how to load and use your posterior chain creates a natural balance between front and back that will help in preventing knee and hip issues.

Imagine that you are growing roots through your feet and grab the ground with your entire foot. Getting proper instruction from an expert so that you can MASTER THE KETTLEBELL SWING is the best thing that you can do for your training regardless of your goal.

If you want to build strength, kettle bell swings will forge a grip of steel and will add pounds to your dead lift & squat. If you want to boost your athleticism, kettle bell swings will make you more powerful and add height to your jump and shave seconds off your sprints.

If you want to pack on muscle, swinging a heavy kettle bell will build an intimidating upper back & set of shoulders. And if you want to shed body fat, swings will incinerate blubber like butter melting in an iron pan.

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The kettle bell : one of my personal favorite workout tools, and one that I feel is underutilized by many. Kettle bells provide for a larger range of mobility than barbells or even dumbbells, helping to maximize the pump and working on different types of muscles or focusing on one in particular.

Besides looking great, strong back muscles can help to improve your posture and align your spine. Bad posture has become quite the epidemic lately due to the large amount of desk jobs and smartphone use that is rampant in our society.

Stand with your feet hip-width apart, hold your kettle bell by the handle with an overhand grip. Squat and sit back with your hips, load the heels and keep your shins vertical.

Watch the video below by kettle bell expert Greg Brookes in addition to reading the instructions for best effect! Stand with feet hip-width apart, and hold your kettle bell using both hands in front of your chest, arms straight outwards.

Sit into the stance, pushing your butt outwards and moving your chest forwards. Correcting this will place more emphasis on your shoulder muscles and also your core will have to work overtime to counteract this rotation.

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A properly performed kettle bell swing will work your entire body, promoting stronger shoulders and back as well as a strong core and more flexible hips. Bend slightly at the knees but concentrate your movement on hinging your hips, then grasp the kettle bell.

Performing a good clean can be somewhat complicated, as there are a lot of moving parts to the exercise. Step out with one leg landing wider than shoulder width apart, squatting at the same time.

Adding a kettle bell means more muscles have to work to stabilize the weight, making it an even more effective exercise. Start in plank position, while keeping your right hand on a sturdy object that won’t easily move, like a bench or chair.

Interested in the best kettle bell and battle rope workouts on the web, with hundreds of video lessons taught by certified instructors? Head over to the Living. Fit workouts page, where you will find some of the best kettle bell and battle rope exercises, all with complete breakdown videos and community support every step of the way.

There's an underrated piece of gear in the weight room, and it's time you started using it way more frequently. I'm talking about the kettle bell, an effective, bell-shaped piece of equipment that will help you build some major muscles.

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These moves are great for a beginner kettle bell workout when done with lighter weights at a slower pace. While intermediate or advanced fitness levels can turn them into a more challenging training session by opting to lift a heavier load and picking up the pace.

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(It could take 20 minutes to complete this volume of sets and reps, depending on your pace.) How to: Start in a squat position with a kettle bell in each hand, arms extended toward floor between feet, palms facing away from body.

Then, in one motion, press through heels to stand up, raising the kettle bells overhead, rotating palms to face inward and stopping when biceps are by ears. How to: Start standing with feet shoulder-width apart holding a kettle bell with both hands in front of chest and close to body (elbows bent).

Push hips back and bend knees to lower into a squat. How to: Start standing with feet hip-width apart holding the handle of a kettle bell with both hands in front of face, elbows bent and wide at sides.

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How to: Start in a hinge (hips back, knees slightly bent, torso leaned forward at 45 degrees) holding the handle of a kettle bell with both hands, arms extended straight toward floor and bell between knees. In one motion, squeeze glutes, straighten legs, lift torso, and thrust hips forward, while swinging the weight to shoulder height, keeping your arms straight and core tight.

How to: Start seated on heels with a kettle bell in each hand, arms bent, elbows narrow, palms facing inward, and weights resting against upper arms. In one motion, press hips forward and rise up to high kneeling position using that momentum to rotate palms away from body and press the kettle bells overhead until arms are straight and biceps are by ears.

How to: Start seated in a cross-legged position, butt on ground, back straight, with a kettle bell in each hand, arms bent, elbows narrow, palms facing inward, and weights resting against upper arms. In one motion, rotate palms away from body and press the kettle bells overhead until arms are straight and biceps are by ears.

How to: Start standing with feet shoulder-width apart, left hand on hip, right-hand holding kettle bell at shoulder height, palm facing inward, elbow bent. Engage core and rotate palm away from body while pressing weight overhead until arm is straight and bicep is by ear.

How to: Start standing with feet under hips holding a kettle bell in each hand, weights resting on quads and palms facing body. Stop when chest and right leg are parallel to floor, then reverse movement to return to start.

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How to: Start standing with feet under hips holding a kettle bell in each hand, arms by sides, and palms facing body. Squeeze shoulder blades together while lifting elbows toward ceiling and pulling weights up toward ribs, then reverse entire movement to return to start.

How to: Start standing with feet shoulder-width apart holding a kettle bell in each hand, arms bent, elbows narrow, palms facing inward, and weights resting against upper arms. Then, engage core and in one motion, push through heels to stand, rotate palms to face away from body, and press the weights overhead until arms are straight.

How to: Start in a hinge (hips back, knees slightly bent, torso leaned forward at 45 degrees) holding the handle of a kettle bell with left hand, arm extended straight toward floor in front of left foot, and right hand resting on bench or chair for balance. How to: Start lying face up with left leg straight on mat, right leg bent, foot flat on floor, left arm out at side on floor at 45-degree angle, and right arm holding kettle bell above shoulder, tricep on floor, and elbow at 45-degree angle from body.

Raise the weight up above chest, keeping gaze on it, until arm is straight but not locked at the elbow. Sweep left foot back behind body to come into kneeling lunge with both legs bent at 90 degrees.

Rotate chest to the right, look up at the kettle bell, and slowly hinge at waist to lower torso toward floor and touch left foot with left fingers, pushing hips back to the right corner of the room. This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses.

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As mentioned earlier age is not always the best indicator of good health and fitness. Your focus as a senior should not be to break any lifting records or to push yourself to complete exhaustion.

Do you or have you had a physical job that has left you stronger than most or do you have zero experience of weight lifting? As you get older and move less you ability to take your joints through their full range diminishes.

A lack of joint mobility will not only affect your posture but also your ability to move correctly. For many people this mobility routine can have more of an impact on their lives than the workout so please don’t skip this section.

Regular wrist mobility will help keep the joints healthy and improve circulation. If you don’t walk over varied ground or take part in sports then your hip mobility will probably be limited.

Poor hip mobility will affect your walking gait as well as force your lower back to move more than it should do. Simple body weight squats are one of the best exercises you can perform and will strengthen your full body.

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Good ankle mobility will improve your balance as well as prevent further leg injury while walking or tripping on uneven ground. Often one of the most overlooked areas of the body a simple ankle mobility routine will also improve circulation.

Watch a video of the ankle mobility warm up exercises below: Try to keep the kettle bell close to the neck line and don’t bend the head forwards.

You will also find this is a great exercise for seniors with limited mobility as it lengthens the hamstrings and mobilizes the hips. I recommend practicing the exercise without a kettle bell first in order to master the movement.

Not only is the kettle bell step up highly effective at raising the heart rate and strengthening the legs and buttocks but also has a great cross over into your daily life. You will find walking up hills and stairs much easier if you work on this exercise.

You will also quickly raise your heart rate, pump vital nutrients around your body and improve your movement strength and skills for daily life. Failure to get a full 90 degree bends in the knees will limit the amount of buttock activation achieved.

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(Source: thelivefitgirls.com)

Watch a video on how to improve your kettle bell goblet squat exercise below: The ability to get up and down from the floor is an important activity as we get older and very challenging for many people.

Everyone should practice the get up without a kettle bell first, if need be you can hold a tennis ball or glass of water in the hand. Practice : when you can perform 10 alternating repetitions without a kettle bell then slowly start to add some load.

Start off steady and use a light kettle bell for the first 2 weeks before slowly increasing the load. You should feel out of breath at the end of each circuit if not add more load or pick up the pace.

Using kettle bell exercises for seniors and older adults can be highly effective at improving health, fitness and well-being. Regular kettle bell training can improve balance, strength, your metabolism, help with fat loss and confidence.

Older adults can move and be just as strong, if not stronger, than those half their age so there are no hard and fast rules for what weight to start with. I’ve included a kettle bell circuit that you can follow 3-4 times per week just add load steadily as you get stronger.

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Sources
1 www.simplefitnesshub.com - https://www.simplefitnesshub.com/what-body-part-does-kettlebell-swings-work/
2 www.atemi-sports.com - https://www.atemi-sports.com/what-muscles-kettlebell-swings-work/
3 www.webmd.com - https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/guide/kettlebell-workout
4 darkironfitness.com - https://darkironfitness.com/kettlebells-for-beginners/