If this is your first time trying a given move, start light and increase the weight as you become more comfortable. Note: If you don’t have access to a kettle bell, you can do most of these exercises with a regular weight or dumbbell.
Exercise Disclaimer: Before starting any new workout regimen, it’s important to consult with your healthcare provider. If you experience faintness, dizziness, pain or shortness of breath at any time while exercising you should stop immediately.
Especially if you’re new to kettle bell workouts, I recommend watching the videos at least once or twice to understand how each move should look. Hold the kettle bell on the handle in front of you with your palms facing in.
Start to rotate the kettle bell clockwise around your body and by switching hands. Hold your core muscles tight and keep your chest high throughout the move.
Start by pushing your hips back and slightly bending your knees. Reach down by hinging at your hip and grab your kettle bell on the handle with both hands.
Bend the standing knee slightly and hinge forward at the hip. Hold your kettle bell on the horns with both hands (palms facing in) in front of your chest.
Lower your body towards the ground in a sitting motion while maintaining a straight back. Bring your kettle bell over your head using a clean and press motion.
Bend at your hip and reach for the floor with the hand opposite of the kettle bell. Once you touch the floor (or shin) return to the starting position and repeat.
Stand tall with your back straight and core muscles engaged. Stop once your elbows are parallel to the ground, lower your arms slowly and then repeat.
Feel free to get creative with our exercise moves at home or at the gym. A 16-kilogram (35 lb) “competition kettle bell Arthur Saxon with a kettle bell, cover of The Text Book of Weight-Lifting (1910)The Russian girl (, plural girl) was a type of metal weight, primarily used to weigh crops in the 18th century.
They began to be used for recreational and competition strength athletics in Russia and Europe in the late 19th century. The birth of competitive kettle bell lifting or Gregory sport ( ) is dated to 1885, with the founding of the “Circle for Amateur Athletics” ( ).
Russian girl are traditionally measured in weight by Food, corresponding to 16.38 kilograms (36.1 lb). The English term kettle bell has been in use since the early 20th century.
Similar weights used in Classical Greece were the halter, comparable to the modern kettle bell in terms of movements. Variants of the kettle bell include bags filled with sand, water, or steel shot.
By their nature, typical kettle bell exercises build strength and endurance, particularly in the lower back, legs, and shoulders, and increase grip strength. The basic movements, such as the swing, snatch, and the clean and jerk, engage the entire body at once, and in a way that mimics real world activities such as shoveling or farm work.
Unlike the exercises with dumbbells or barbells, kettle bell exercises involve large numbers of repetitions in the sport, and can also involve large reps in normal training. Kettle bell exercises are in their nature holistic; therefore they work several muscles simultaneously and may be repeated continuously for several minutes or with short breaks.
When training with high repetitions, kettle bell progression should start out slowly to build muscle endurance, support the joints and prevent injury. Like movements performed with any exercise tool, they can be dangerous to those who have back or shoulder problems, or a weak core, when performed without proper education and progression.
They can offer improved mobility, range of motion, agility, cardio vascular endurance, mental toughness and increased strength. The following is a list of common exercises that are uniquely suited to the kettle bell for one reason or another.
A kettle bell exercise that combines the lunge, bridge and side plank in a slow, controlled movement. Keeping the arm holding the bell extended vertically, the athlete transitions from lying supine on the floor to standing, and back again.
As with the other slow exercises (the windmill, get-up, and halo), this drill improves shoulder mobility and stabilization. It starts lying on the ground with the kettle bell over the shoulder in a straight arm position, as in the top of a floor press, but with the other arm along the floor straight overhead.
The trainee then gradually turns their body away from the kettle bell until they are lying partially on their front. The kettle bell is held hanging in one arm and moved smoothly around the body, switching hands in front and behind.
Also called a front leg pass, this is a backward lunge, circling the bell around the front leg, returning to the standing position, and repeating. Like the slingshot, but the bell is swung forward until the arms are parallel to the ground.
Starting with the bell in the rack, the bell is pushed away to the side slightly, the swung down to the other side in front of the body, and reversed back up into the rack. A variation of the press where the other arm assists by pushing open palm against the ball.
Stand on one leg and hold the kettle bell with the opposite arm. By then lowering and raising the kettle bell you can work stabilization and power.
A press utilizing a bent-leg windmill position to lift heavier weight than is otherwise possible. One bell is rowed to the chest while maintaining the plank position, then returned to the ground and repeated with the other arm.
Alternatively performed with a single kettle bell, one arm at a time. This requires more control than an ordinary push up and results in a greater range of motion.
Feet may be elevated to increase the difficulty, until the trainee is performing a handstand push-up on the kettle bells. In any movement involving the rack or overhead position, the kettle bell can be held with the ball in an open palm (sometimes called the waiter hold) for a greater stabilization challenge, or for even more precise control and added grip challenge, the bottom-up hold, squeezing the kettle bell by the handle upside-down.
Holding a single kettle bell in the rack position bottom-up with two hands (“by the horns”) makes for goblet exercise variants. Conventional swing: The kettle bell is swung from just below the groin to somewhere between the upper abdomen and shoulders, with arms straight or slightly bent, the degree of flexion depends on the trajectory of the kettle bell.
Hang clean: The kettle bell is held in the rack position (resting on the forearm in the crook of the elbow, with the elbow against the chest), lowered to below the knees, and then thrust back up in to the rack. The kettle bell is held in one hand, lowered to behind the knees via hip hinge, swung to an overhead position and held stable, before repeating the movement.
Jerk: As a push press, but with two dips, for more leg assistance (as in the barbell clean and jerk) Thruster: A rack squat with a press at the top using momentum from the squat. Pistol squat: A single-leg squat with one leg held straight in front parallel to the ground, holding the bell in the goblet or rack position.
An easier variant for those with less hip mobility is to perform the squat parallel to a step or ledge, so that the foot of the free leg can dip beneath the pushing leg at the bottom. Carry: Walking with the kettle bell held in various positions, such as suitcase, rack, goblet, or overhead.
Row: While bent over anywhere from 45 degrees to parallel with the ground, the kettle bell is held hanging from a straight arm, pulled up to the hips or laterally, and lowered again. Keeping the bell arm vertical, the upper body is bent to one side and rotated until the other hand is touching the floor.
The single kettle bell version is called the suitcase walk. These build grip strength while challenging your core, hips, back and traps.
The kettle bell is swung from just below the groin to somewhere between the upper abdomen and shoulders, with arms straight or slightly bent, the degree of flexion depends on the trajectory of the kettle bell. The key to a good kettle bell swing is effectively thrusting the hips, not bending too much at the knees, and sending the weight forwards, as opposed to squatting the weight up, or lifting with the arms.
The one-arm swing presents a significant anti-twisting challenge, and can be used with an alternating catch switching between arms. Within those variations there are plenty more variations, some are, but not limited to: pace, movement, speed, power, grip, the direction of thumb, elbow flexion, knee flexion.
The kettle bell has more than 25 grips that can be employed, to provide variety, challenge different muscles, increase or decrease complexity, and work on proprioception. Competitive lifter (Greek) performing jerk with 32 kg kettle bells (rack position). Contemporary kettle bell training is represented basically by five styles.
Hard style has its roots in powerlifting and Gj-rykarate training, particularly hobo undo concepts. With emphasis on the “hard” component and borrowing the concept of time, the Hard style focuses on strength and power and duality of relaxation and tension.
Gregory, sometimes referred to as the fluid style in comparison to the Hard style, represents the training regimen for the competitive sport of kettle bell lifting, focusing on strength endurance. Juggling is a training style where the practitioner releases and catches the kettle bell with all manner of spins and flips around the body.
Kettle bell training is extremely broad and caters to many goals, some being, but not limited to: mobility, flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, strength, speed and power. The sport can be compared to what the CrossFit Games is to CrossFit, however, the sport has been much longer in existence, and is only recently gaining more popularity worldwide, with women participating as well.
One such example being Valerie Wazowski, who at age 52, was the first US female lifter in the veteran age category to achieve Master of Sport in 24 kg Kettle bell Long Cycle. ^ , «» .
« » “ ”, 22 August 2016 (with period photographs). 21 (1908), p. 505: “PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD ARE USING SCHMIDT'S Celebrated 'MONARCH' DUMB-BELL, BAR BELL AND KETTLE BELL SYSTEM”; also spelled KETTLE-BELLS (with hyphen) in a 1910 advertisement for the “Automatic Exerciser”) ^ a b c Rathbone, Andy (2009-01-04).
Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies 15 (2011): 542-544 ^ a b Iv ill, Laura (2008-11-22). “Exclusive ACE research examines the fitness benefits of kettle bells” (PDF).
Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies 15 (2011): 125-127 ^ Kettle bell Swing Vs. High Pull”. ^ “The Kettle bell Clean, Stop Banging Your Wrists | The Complete Guide”.
Whether you’re at the gym or buying weights for home fitness, it’s important to know the differences between kettle bells and dumbbells. The weight is displaced evenly on either side of the handle and sits at the same level as your hand.
In kettle bells, the weight sits behind your wrist and creates a slight torque in your joints. The slight bend from kettle bells can exacerbate ongoing tendonitis or carpal tunnel in ways that wouldn’t happen with dumbbells.
On the other hand, if you’re interested in building wrist and grip strength, a kettle bell is a great way to do so. While the difference is slight, some fitness fanatics may find this relevant for their specific goals.
Another big difference between kettle bells and dumbbells is that the location of the weight affects the movement and power you can generate with them. There are a lot of dynamic exercises you can do with kettle bells that involve your ability to create and stop momentum.
Kettle bell swings are a particularly popular exercise because the moving center of gravity activates your core as well as the intended shoulder and arm muscles. It’s also easier to progressively increase the weight with dumbbells, as fewer muscles are involved.
The lighter the weight, the less you’ll notice these slight differences in feel between kettle bells and dumbbells. However, in high-intensity interval training (HIIT), you may find kettle bells are slightly easier to pick up and use.
The wider handle makes it easy to grab a kettle bell quickly and with both hands if the exercise requires it. Lastly, as mentioned above, the weight location of kettle bells makes them slightly more challenging using.
Because the added weight isn’t right at your hand, kettle bells throw off your center of gravity. Kettle bells are a great way to bring a new element into your free weight exercises.
Switching out dumbbells for kettle bells in your normal routine will engage your core and snap your muscles out of autopilot. Some new weightlifters may also find it easier to feel the isolated muscles and understand the exercises better with dumbbells.
When you’re building up your home gym, it’s only natural to think about adding some kind of weights to the mix. And, while you could opt for classic dumbbells, kettle bells offer a little more versatility for your workouts.
With kettle bells, you can do your standard weight lifting, but you can also add swings, jerks, and a bunch of other HIIT moves to the mix. The kettle bell ’s large, easy-to-grip handle and teardrop design make it perfect to use for just about everything.
This $16 kettle bell, which offers up weights ranging from five to 50 pounds, is an Amazon bestseller. Not everyone feels comfortable gripping an iron kettle bell handle.
You can also ramp up your weight as you build strength with this $34 set, which features five, 10, and 15-pounders. A vinyl coating helps protect your floors and reduce noise.
Many kettle bells are crafted out of cast iron, which isn’t exactly cheap. A wide handle allows for easy grip, while a flat bottom keeps the whole thing from rolling away.
Kettle Grip allows you to take your existing dumbbells and turn them into kettle bells. Just clamp it around the dumbbell handle, close it, and start using your weight like a kettle bell.
This $120 adjustable kettle bell has a massive range, with weight options from five to 40 pounds. It’s all thanks to six drops cast iron plates that can easily be removed or added to change the weight of your kettle bell.
If you could only get one piece of workout equipment for your home gym, it should be a kettle bell. The kettle bell -- a type of dumbbell shaped like a bell with a handle on top -- may seem like any other weight you use for strength training.
Kettle bells can add challenge and variety to your workout routine -- whether you're looking to build strength in your core muscles and glutes or get some cardio in -- or a combination of both. Amazon Diva premium kettle bell comes in a wide variety of weight increments (from 5 to 50 pounds) making it a great quality kettle bell for beginners or more advanced exercisers.
This kettle bell from Power has a coated handle and the base is covered in vinyl, making it less susceptible to rust or corrosion in addition to a different grip feel. Amaranths adjustable cast iron kettle bell is a great pick for advanced exercisers or those who already lift weights and want to be able to progress with their kettle bell weight quickly.
You're considered more advanced If you have experience with lifting weights or are currently strength training. Our Health & Wellness newsletter puts the best products, updates and advice in your inbox.
Finding your way around your gym’s cardio machines is fairly foolproof. Weights, though, aren’t as straightforward, which is why the question of when you should grab a kettle bell versus dumbbell to check off your strength training is often cause for confusion.
When you hold a weight, the mass is on either side of your hand, while with a kettle bell it’s directly underneath with a space in the middle. “With a kettle bell, there is a space between your hand and the actual load, and this added distance acts as an additional lever arm,” says Kelvin Gary, founder of NYC’s BodySpaceFitness.
This, he explains can make the load feel either lighter or heavier, depending on its position in space. “The added benefit here is that its more stimulus for your body to have to adapt to, thereby increasing the need for coordination and stability and ramping up the effort,” says Gary.
Squats, lunges, rows, and presses can also all be done with both types of weight, but you may have an easier go using the kettle bell because of the grip. If the answer is no, you should take things down a notch; if it’s yes, you’re on the right track (and if it’s yes, but you feel like you could do at least four more, grab something heavier).
Dumbbells are easier to use than kettle bells, which makes them a great choice if you’re just getting started in the weight-training game. Even if you’re an advanced lifter, JackieVick, CSS, a trainer at Gold’s Gym notes that dumbbells are usually the better choice for moves that require “pressing and pulling,” because dumbbells help you feel more stable.
Renegade rows: In a high plank position with dumbbells in each hand, row one arm at a time, pulling your elbow toward your back and keeping your core engaged throughout the move. Dumbbell push-press: Standing with your feet hips-width distance apart a set of dumbbells at your shoulders and your knees slightly bent, drive through your lower body to lift them straight over head.
Farmer’s carry : Hold equally weighted dumbbells in either hand, and walk across the floor holding your shoulders back and keeping your core tight. Bring them back down, stopping before your elbows drop below the bench.
“Kettle bells offer a slight edge in design effectiveness and energy usage during functional movements,” says Pick, adding that they’re better for moves like swings, cleans and snatches because of the way the load is distributed. However, they can be slightly harder to use than dumbbells, so if you’re new to weight training you may want to build up to kettle bell moves.
Single arm swings: Standing with your feet hips-width distance apart, hold onto the kettle bell handle with one hand. Bending your knees slightly and keeping your back straight, swing the bell in between your legs with control.
Explode up, and use the momentum to lift the kettle bell to your shoulder and flip it over your wrist. These help with hip extensions, and allow you to hit multiple planes in a single move, says Gary.
Goblet squats : Hold a kettle bell by the “horns” (aka the side handles), and turn your feet out. You look like someone who loves free workouts, discounts for cult-fave wellness brands, and exclusive Well+Good content.
Sign up for Well+, our online community of wellness insiders, and unlock your rewards instantly. They might look like heavy teapots without a spout but kettle bells are, in fact, a very powerful tool in the fight against flab.
These compact weights are small enough to fit into even the smallest rooms and the majority of workouts require just one kettle bell, meaning you could enjoy some fat-torching training time from the comfort of your own home for less than a tenner, as long as your home has literally enough room to swing a cat (NB: don't actually swing a cat in order to ascertain this). Those venturing out into the world of kettle bells for the first time should go easy on the weight, as the grueling sessions will prove impossible if you can't lift the bloody thing above your head.
Finally, it's also worth noting the handle clearance from the bell (or 'window', to give it the correct title) and its diameter. Larger hands could find certain 'bells difficult to grip and comfortably on the forearm, which is required in burly overhead press exercises.
The neoprene sleeve over the cast iron body will help keeping the floors intact too. A small pointy bit on the handle can result in a bruised palm after a grueling kettle bell swing session.
They all sport flat, non-wobble bottoms, color coded handles and an engraved logo at the front of the kettle bell. The difference is mainly felt in your wallet: while you will have to pay the premium price Tax kettle bells, the Gym reapers variety will a bit of extra money in the pocket.
Signing up for stock alerts and visiting the Gym reapers website often is highly recommended. Admittedly the Bow flex Selected 840 Kettle bell looks more like an actual kettle than a home weight, but don't let the looks deceive you.
Reasons to avoid You may have noticed that a number of dumbbell manufacturers have started offering selectable systems that negate the need to fill your house with a spread of weights. Well, Växjö has taken this idea one step further with its electronically-adjustable kettle bell system, which offers a spread of 5 kg-19kg in a singly, albeit slightly bulky, unit.
Plus, you'll have to invest in two of these if you want the ultimate kettle bell workout (squats, two-hand overhead press etc. The king of suspension weight training has long sounded the bell for kettle bells, as the lumps of iron make the perfect companion to spruce up any dangling Suspension Trainer workout.
It also results in that lovely, flat bottom, which makes it's easier to rest the kettle bell on the floor when switching hands during an arduous squat routine. Tax has added a splash of color to the handles, making it simple to spy the correct weight if swapping between kettle bells mid-workout.
I'd say the 16 kg unit is the one to go for if you're a bloke in reasonable shape, but there's a good spread of weights, making this one piece of fitness equipment that will likely outlast the fickle New Year's resolution to shed a few pounds. Wilkerson Fitness has harnessed its many years of experience in knitting out the UK National Kettle bell Teams when designing and producing its range of superior quality 'bells.
Modern casting methods means each bell is formed out of a single piece of metal, meaning no joins or welds, while a distinct lack of cheap plastic handles ensures they come with a lifetime guarantee. Don't fret, if these prove a little daunting to the introductory kettle bell lifter you can always check out the slightly less hardcore range, which is still brilliantly constructed.
The perfect antithesis to the digital delights of the aforementioned Växjö is a good, old-fashioned selection of kettle bells. Rebel kettle bells don't come cheap, but they are engineered to last, fashioned from premium-grade Iron Ore, not scrap iron (as with cheaper alternatives) and using a one-piece cast mold to ensure the kettle bells feel well-balanced in the hand and built to last.
The powder coated finish means they won't flake, chip or rust when covered in sweat, too. We don't know many professional kettle bell athletes, but we are pretty sure they are very aware of Gorilla Sports and its range of competition-spec swingers.
With very strict regulations on dimensions and the aperture of the window (the handle, to you and me), these solid steel numbers are really only for the very serious enthusiasts out there. Each solid steel unit is individually priced, with the weedier 12 kg model costing around £50.
Reasons to avoid It's not always a good idea to go out and blow a large sum on workout equipment on a get-fit whim. If you're new to the whole kettle bell thing, this vinyl number from Opt is a real bargain, with a cheap but substantial finish proving enough for most novice swingers.
The 10 kg maximum mass could feel a little light in time, but for those starting out, or who don't require massive heft from their 'bells, this is great. The compact size makes it perfect for stashing away at home for the odd impromptu session.
Reasons to avoid The vinyl coating swaddling these cast iron weights is a handy addition for anyone worried about damaging their parquet, yet the unit remains robust and a much more long-term option than cheaper all-vinyl offerings. Body power also offers a very impressive range of weights, with the option to package them up into a small set of, say, 6 kg-12kg increments.
That's not a huge maximum weight, obviously, but it allows lighter users to switch between high-resistance and low-resistance/high rep workouts with ease, for not much money. The vinyl coating may feel cheaper than the cast iron and steel suggestions on this list but all three of these will set you back half the price of a single kettle bell from some other brands.
It's simply a solid lump for lifting above your head while screaming like a hungry caveman. It's also one of the cheaper 16 kg weights on the market, making it very tempting to splash out on a couple to create a pretty awesome home gym set-up.
Kettle bells are a great tool to build back strength and muscle. Given that their center of gravity is constantly changing, kettle bells replicate the forces that you might find in real-life activities, improving not only your performance but also your daily life.
Protection against chronic back pain Protection against back injury Maintain optimal posture Increased overall strength Better performance in lower and upper body lifts Prevention against strains and sprains that can occur during sports and daily chores Positive body image Creating a balance between both pushing and pulling exercises is important to avoid any postural or overly dominate movement patterns.
Make sure your kettle bell training includes both pulling and pushing workouts to reap all the benefits of a strong back. The kettle bell dead lift movement pattern mirrors all daily life exercises where you have to pick something up from the floor.
No matter what your goals are, the dead lift should be one of your main exercises to strengthen your back. A singe arm kettle bell dead lift works your posterior chain, including your glutes, hamstrings and lower, mid and upper back muscles.
As a dynamic movement, the kettle bell swing works both your strength and cardio, and will help you develop great explosive power. Walk into any gym, and you’ll likely encounter two basic kinds of free weights: the trusty dumbbells and the new kid on the block, the kettle bells.
If your goal is powerlifting, ply improvements, or if you’re competing in a sport that requires explosiveness (like basketball or CrossFit games), research suggests kettle bells lead to greater gains. Swings are also great because they can spike your heart rate, providing cardiovascular as well as strength benefits, says Dell Poland, head coach at BRICK New York.
In fact, all the experts we spoke with emphasized that dumbbells are the best choice for weight training unless you’ve specifically worked with a personal trainer on kettle bells. General Fitness: Dumbbells One study showed that, compared to dynamic moves with kettle bells, basic weightlifting exercises (think power cleans and squats) led to significantly greater improvements in strength over a six-week period.
Newbies and those looking to perform basic strength movements at the gym should head toward the dumbbell rack, while Crossfires and people doing explosive moves should grab a kettle bell. Choose which type of weight works with your exercise plan and fitness level, and never hesitate to consult a certified trainer for a personalized assessment if you have any questions.
There are benefits to using single and double kettle bells depending on your goals. Let’s explore which options are the best plus the types of exercises that lend themselves better to 1 and 2 kettle bells.
You can perform most of the exercises and produce some incredible results with just one kettle bell. Weaker or inexperienced women may wish to begin with a 8 kg and men can choose a 12 kg.
Using two kettle bells doubles the load so care needs to be taken to ensure you are capable of handling the extra weight. As well as adding extra weight using two kettle bells also enables you to train both sides at the same time, this can seriously cut down on training time but also makes the exercises more demanding.
Clean and Press Double Lunges Racked Squats Single Leg Dead lifts Using the above exercises with 2 kettle bells will save you a lot of time and also generate some great strength benefits that are hard to achieve with just one kettle bell.
Body weight Reverse Lunge (always master the exercise without weight first) Holding One Kettle bell with Two Hands (see image below) The above exercises would be progressed over a period of months ensuring that you can perform 3 sets of each variation before moving on to the next one.
I understand that when you are just starting out the thought of buying lots of kettle bells is daunting but ultimately, as mentioned earlier, you can get away with just one. Let’s say you bought a 12 kg for lots of single kettle bell workouts and then later progressed to a 16 kg.
Holding a 12 kg on one side and a 16 kg on the other is an inexpensive way to begin double kettle bell training. There are lots more for you to try but these are the 3 that I would recommend you practice in order to get used to the feel of 2 kettle bells.
Using two kettle bells enables you to perform shorter workouts while at the same time challenging your strength. You may choose to use two different kettle bell weights when performing double kettle bell exercises in order to still add a degree of instability to the exercise.