Kettlebell Joint Mobility Exercises

Maria Garcia
• Sunday, 08 November, 2020
• 10 min read

The ability to move each of your joints through their maximum range is very important to preserve your youth, avoid injury and improve your posture. Begin at the top and work your way down, pay particular attention to areas that feel tight or lack movement.

kettlebell shoulders mobility release
(Source: www.youtube.com)


The upper back or thoracic spine is tight in most modern day desk workers. A simple joint but important to warm up before exercises like the clean or snatch.

Tight hips can cause lower back issues and knee problems. Bad ankle mobility is increasingly common, especially after an injury.

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.

kettlebell shoulder exercise mobility training injury
(Source: www.skillofstrength.com)

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.

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. The first three kettlebellexercises are mainly for thoracic and shoulder mobility, range of motion, and to get a better overhead position.

mobility exercises bodyweight kettlebell onnit academy
(Source: www.onnit.com)

The Open Palm Front Squat provides plenty of other benefits, like proprioception and stability. Now that I’ve quickly covered the five exercises that I would recommend any Crossfire include in their training, let’s delve deeper into each one and have look at the fine little details.

See more related details about wrist hyper extension in the section about the Hybrid Strict Press. As if wrist strength, proprioception, kettle bell control and looking cool isn’t enough, here comes the bang for one’s buck; the Open Palm Front Squat mimics the CrossFit Barbell racking position; it helps with tricep and lat flexibility; and it promotes thoracic and shoulder mobility.

That’s just the Open Palm part of the exercise, add the squat and you’re working on so many things that I could write a book on it. With a background as a former orthopedic physical therapist, I’ve treated many shoulder injuries throughout my career.

We need to balance the extensive network of shoulder complex muscles effectively in order to minimize our risk for injury. The rotator cuff (RTC) muscles are vital for the normal joint mechanics of the shoulder.

What these four muscles essentially do is maintain the humeral head (ball) in the glenoid (socket) during arm movements. Let me repeat, the RTC keeps the ball in the socket and is a major contributor to optimizing the joint mechanics, when healthy and strong.

kettlebell mobility ankle
(Source: www.youtube.com)

If there is muscle weakness, imbalance, or dysfunction of the RTC, the mobility and stability of the shoulder joint will be compromised. And, finally, there are the important scapular (shoulder blade) muscles, which include the serrated anterior, trapezium, rhomboids, PEC minor, and elevator scapulae.

Many shoulder injuries are preventable by strengthening the RTC and scapular musculature, while maintaining joint mobility and stability. But it’s important to perform the right types of exercises and avoid poor technique faults and training methods.

The majority of shoulder problems in athletes and the general population are related to rotator cuff dysfunction. Other contributing causes are degenerative changes to the RTC (which is inevitable as we age) and also an abnormal pathology of the acromial (structural defect).

This occurs when the shoulder joint deviates out of its normal position (the humeral head moves out of the glenoid). This can be a minor shift in movement, which is called a subluxation, or can result in a more severe dislocation in the shoulder.

Individuals suffering from an instability problem will experience pain with active elevation of the arm and may feel as if the shoulder is slipping or moving out of place. Many of these will help to improve or restore mobility, stability, and optimize RTC strength, as well as the entire shoulder complex.

mobility kettlebell kettlebells exercises
(Source: www.youtube.com)

Listed below each exercise will be a recommended rep scheme to use as a preworkout mobility program or warm up. The TGU and its component parts are what I consider to be the staple for maximizing shoulder joint health and function.

Not only does it fire the RTC the entire time, but the weight-bearing positions are outstanding for scapular stability and strength. The important thing is to get this exercise right and not rush it as you’re moving through each transition in a slow, controlled motion.

Performing the kettle bell windmill requires a dynamic range of motion, mobility, and stability. While it’s also great for the hip and spine strength and stability, I include it on this list for the same reason as the TGU.

As you move throughout the windmill, the RTC must constantly fire and stabilize the humeral head through the wide range of motion. The shoulder mobility is not as dynamic as with the TGU and windmill, but the stability and proprioceptive benefits (knowing where your arm is in space) are outstanding.

The kettle bell military press is excellent for total shoulder strength, but has the mobility and stability elements to it, as well. The entire time you are swinging the kettle bell, the RTC is firing to stabilize the shoulder joint and maintain the humoral head in the glenoid.

bar arm kettlebell shoulder exercise mobility
(Source: www.youtube.com)

From a standpoint of strengthening the RTC, the kettle bell swing is an excellent exercise to optimize shoulder health, even though we don’t typically think of it that way. The halo is a very effective mobility exercise for the shoulder (GH joint) and the thoracic spine.

There can be no argument that the snatch is an extremely powerful and dynamic exercise for the shoulder complex when properly performed. 2-3 sets of 5 reps per arm with a light to medium-sized kettle bell prior to a training session is an excellent way to prime the shoulders.

To maximize shoulder health, we could also add more scapular stabilization work in addition the exercises above. To minimize our risk for injury, we need to keep our RTC and all of our shoulder stabilizers strong and healthy.

If you had to pick one, I would consider the TGU as the mother of all shoulder exercises because of the unique benefits it offers, in terms of mobility, stability, and strength. “This contralateral balanced plank on a kettle bell is a great way to work on your anti-rotational strength.

Try this as part of your warm up to get you brain, temp, and rotational muscles to AWAKEN.” “This anterior core exercise is turned slightly rotational by only loading one arm at a time.

mobility ankle kettlebell
(Source: theprehabguys.com)

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.

Because of this, kettle bells require you to engage your core even more in order to move the load efficiently. 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. Get Our All/Out Studio App Free For 30 Days: Visit alloutstudio.com, click “Start Free Trial,” create an account, select “monthly subscription,” and enter the coupon code FREE30.

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.

kettlebell mobility
(Source: www.youtube.com)

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. 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. 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.

kettlebell workouts workout mma mobility shoulder stability core fighters hip fun kettlebellsworkouts ift tt
(Source: www.pinterest.com)

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.

kettlebell along
(Source: www.youtube.com)

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1 www.t-nation.com - https://www.t-nation.com/training/tip-kettlebells-are-overrated
2 ketologic.com - https://ketologic.com/article/ketologic-kettlebell-guide-for-beginners/
3 www.reddit.com - https://www.reddit.com/r/keto/comments/2s632a/keto_kettlebells/