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Kettlebell Swings For Seniors

author
Paul Gonzalez
• Friday, 16 October, 2020
• 21 min read

Your focus as a senior should not be to break any lifting records or to push yourself to complete exhaustion. One of the most important aspects of your health that you should work on as you age is your joint mobility.

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Contents

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. The great thing about neck mobility is that you can practice anytime of the day even while seated watching TV.

Watch a video of the shoulder mobility warm up exercises below: The upper back or thoracic spine is one of the areas that is getting more and more restricted with modern lifestyles.

Watch a video of the upper back mobility warm up exercises below: 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.

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Watch a video of the hip mobility warm up exercises below: Simple body weight squats are one of the best exercises you can perform and will strengthen your full body.

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

Work hard to keep your back flat and use your buttocks and legs to perform the heavy lifting. 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.

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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.

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.

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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.

Always seek professional medical advice and take your time and listen to your body as you exercise. And that’s understandable, being that a physician is more interested in the elderly patient’s blood work, blood pressure, heart function, medications, imaging results, etc.

• Believe it or not, some trainers think this exercise is risky because it involves swinging up a weight and rocking the lumbar area back and forth. • Many trainers actually don’t even do the kettle bell swing themselves, and hence have no idea just how effective this movement is.

You might be thinking that trainers don’t promote the kettle bell swing for the elderly because this population simply cannot do it. If an older person walked into the gym and is being guided through various exercises, they are capable of doing kettlebellswings at least to some extent.

• Stand with feet wide apart, one KB in both hands, arms hanging straight. • Someone whose shoulder is in such bad shape that even swinging up five pounds in both hands causes considerable pain.

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“The KB swing is an effective conditioning exercise and core strength developer. “This is because the postural muscles of the low back/core respond very well to endurance training (higher reps), and also keeping the weight light and increasing reps will reinforce safe lifting form, before proceeding to a heavier load.

“Also be sure to do plenty of mobility movements before and after the kettlebellswings to keep the joints loose and warm.” They regularly visit the gym and have been doing strength training for a long time.

They can start with a light weight as Cotter recommends and work up, doing anywhere from eight to 15 repetitions per set. Gradually work up to heavier weights, but make your incremental increases by no greater than five pounds.

For reconditioned elderly people who are new to strength training, practice the MOTION of the kettle bell exercise first. The motion, minus the KB, can be taxing to the frail elderly after just eight reps.

• Works the entire body; involves multiple joints at the same time. For 30+ years Steve Cotter has promoted body-mind fitness around the world through martial arts, gong, mobility, flexibility and kettle bell training.

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The kettle bell swing is a powerhouse when it relates to burning fat, building muscles, and improving your cardiovascular system. Burn a bunch of calories Studies#1 The American Council on Exercise (ACE), researchers found that a kettle bell workout can burn up to 20 calories a minute (1).

This means that a 20-minute kettle bell workout could burn up to 400 calories. The participants would use a 16 kg (35lbs) kettle bell to complete the workout.

They were told to go at their own pace and take as much rest as they needed. The subjects completed an average of 265 swings in the 12-minute workout.

Using a metabolic cart, researchers found that the participants burned an average of 160 calories in the 12 minutes, an average of 22 swings per minute (2). The heavier you are, the more calories you will burn (assuming all other variables are equal).

Obviously, the heavier the kettle bell, the more calories you will burn (assuming all other variables are equal). The subjects completed an average of 22 swings per minute.

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It is fair to say that not everyone will burn an average of 20 calories per minute, like in the Ace study. But that doesn’t mean everyone will only burn 160 calories in 12-minutes, like in this study.

Full body workout The Kettle bell swing works your core, back, shoulders, hamstring, quads, glutes, forearms, and chest. Move that shit as fast as you can (while keeping control) for 3 to 5 sets of 1 to 5 reps.

The Kettle bell swing used in high-intensity workouts such as HIIT AND Tabatha will increase your anaerobic (without oxygen) capacity. Aerobic capacity is the ability of your body to transport and use the oxygen you breathe.

If you ever have felt out of breath after just 3 or 4 minutes of jogging, then you need to increase your aerobic capacity. Your heart and lungs will curse the day you were born, but you’ll improve your aerobic capacity.

The last time I completed this challenge, I lost 8 pounds in the first seven days. The prescribed kettle bell weight for this challenge is: For women-16 kilos or 35 pounds.

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If you are feeling brave, you can perform this workout a few more times. Just make sure you rest an adequate amount of time between workouts.

The kettle bell swing is a serious way to pack on muscle, increase your strength and cardiovascular endurance, while burning a shit ton of calories. They are an excellent way to get your workout on and kick some ass in the least amount of time possible and without having to leave the comfort of your home.

You can buy a kettle bell anywhere, from sporting goods stores, Amazon, and even Walmart. If you are unsure of which brand to buy, We own two CAP kettle bells.

Please, feel free to share this blog post! Kettle bells are free weights that typically consist of a ball of metal with a handle.

High-quality kettle bells are made out of metal, so they are virtually indestructible but there are also plastic ones that are filled with sand. They have a thick handle you can hold on to securely with two hands and the actual weight is very compact and there are not pointy parts.

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This makes kettle bells perfect for dynamic movements where you swing and push the weight around. This can be compensated with two different size kettle bells or by getting some other form of weight for the upper body work.

Kettle bells can be used to perform many kinds of frees weight exercises like variations of squats, dead lifts, overhead presses, swings, cleans, and snatches for example. I’d go as far as to argue that just by performing kettlebellswings and body weight squats you can achieve a bare minimum amount of strength training to keep your body healthy and functional.

The movement is initiated with the legs and the hips and the power is transferred through the back and the arms to the kettle bell. Because you are moving around with a free weight, the movement also challenges your balance, a key element of your health that you should train when aging.

Kettle bells are also perfect for functional movements like the dead lift which essentially helps you pick heavy objects from the floor. Kettle bells are typically used one at a time and the shape is much more comfortable for swinging the weight around and between your legs when compared to dumbbells.

On the other hand, overhead presses can feel awkward on your wrist when using a kettle bell and dumbbells are generally more suitable for that purpose. There are kettle bells that are made out of plastic and filled with sand, there are metal ones and I think I’ve even seen concrete ones.

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A straight steel kettle bell can scratch a wooden floor when moved on it and shatter ceramic tiles even when handled carefully because the surface is so hard. The correct kettle bell weight is highly individual as your physical fitness, age, gender, and size all play a significant role.

It’s important to recognize that you should always consult a professional when picking up a kettle bell if you are unsure of your personal fitness level and physical capability. I’ll leave an affiliate link to Amazon below, if you decide to buy through it, I will earn a small commission that helps me keep this site up and running.

They are made out of cast iron, they are coated with a soft vinyl to protect your flooring, and they are available in weights ranging from 5lbs to 45lbs. Any other similar kettle bell is perfect as well and there are a ton of options with different colors and finishes on Amazon alone.

This kind of bells will last forever, and they offer a bit of protection from denting your floors. Kettle bell exercises for seniors can help build strength, flexibility, balance and cardiovascular fitness.

Kettle bells are wonderful for seniors, because they combine so many fitness elements, unlike dumbbells, which focus primarily on strengthening an isolated muscle. Before starting a workout program with kettle bells, seniors should consult their doctor.

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Kettle bells and dumbbells are both free weights that are used to do similar exercises to build strength and muscle. Because kettle bells also force your muscles to use a greater range of motion compared to dumbbells, using them can increase your flexibility.

The single kettle bell swing is a cardiovascular exercise that strengthens your glutes, quadriceps and abdominal and stretches your hamstrings. In one swift motion, thrust your hips forward so that you're standing upright, your glutes are engaged and your tailbone is facing down.

The single kettle bell crush curl is a simple exercise that will strengthen your biceps, deltoid and pectorals while you practice good posture. Engage your abdominal muscles and point your tailbone down to protect your low back.

The double kettle bell front squat will strengthen your quadriceps and glutes and teach you to stabilize your core muscles. Engage your abdominal muscles and keep your back straight throughout the exercise.

As you inhale, bend your knees and lower into a squat as if you were about to sit on a chair. They have become a popular exercise tool in the United States largely because of the enthusiasm and effective marketing by strength and flexibility coaches.

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Though kettle bell lifting competitions are relatively new in the United States, they have historical significance in other parts of the world. Kettle bell training was “discovered” by U.S. athletes and particularly mixed martial arts fighters.

The kettle bell shape (remember the “cannonball with a handle” description) makes the weight displacement different from a dumbbell's. The off-center weight of a kettle bell makes it more unwieldy, requiring the use of more stabilizing muscles to control it.

By the nature of their design, nearly all kettle bell lifts are compound movements that work the body as a whole, rather than isolating muscles. Common kettle bell lifts also tend to work muscles through a longer range of motion, which improves flexibility.

So while barbells and dumbbells are certainly good free-weights, keep in mind that the unique unwieldiness of kettle bell training is precisely the reason many athletes use them today. Many of the most common kettle bell exercises, such as swings, cleans, windmills, and snatches, really work the hips, hamstrings, glutes, and waistline.

Combined with proper nutrition, KB workouts will burn off fat better than almost anything you can think of. I am not aware of any reported serious injuries, but you sure wouldn’t want to bonk yourself on the head or drop one on your foot.

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Ideally, some sessions with a competent instructor is a good way to go, although I've seen some excellent video instruction, too. Either way, once you know and practice proper form, kettle bells are certainly no riskier than lifting other free weights such as barbells and dumbbells.

Good judgment is the key to safe, successful kettle bell training, just as it is with barbells and dumbbells. Then begin with modest efforts, perfect your form, and gradually work up.

Next, you must consider your present strength and fitness level when deciding what weight to start with. A rule of thumb is that handling a kettle bell will be more challenging than a dumbbell of the same weight.

Most of the companies selling KB's offer beginner guidelines for what weight(s) to buy. As your strength grows you can buy a heavier bell and sell the lighter one or keep it for higher repetition work.

Best of all, if you can attend a KB training workshop before you buy, or find a trainer nearby, you can try out different weights at the same time you are receiving some coaching. There shouldn’t be ridges in the handle and the finish should be fairly smooth but not slick.

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These cannonball-shaped weights, with a handle that requires you to work to manipulate its off-center mass, encourages balance in older exercisers just when they most need it. Best of all, both men and women can counter the loss of muscle mass associated with aging with a strength-training modality that also provides impressive cardio benefits compared with barbells and dumbbells.

In addition, “know your limitations; if you have chronic back pain, you’re not going to perform the swings,” states New York-based kettle bell trainer Lorna Seaman. “Incorporate movements that enhance specific ranges of motion -- such as the halo, presses or rows,” Seaman recommends.

First master a modified squat that entails holding the bell in your hands while sitting and standing from a chair, Seaman suggests. “If you can perform a squat -- it doesn’t have to be deep -- and have the ability to hold a dumbbell with a straight arm in the overhead position, then begin larger movements such as gentle swings, push presses with the use of legs or high pulls,” she says.

These moves help build lean muscle and maintain bone strength, endurance and balance as well as reaction time, she notes. Jerry Gray, AKA Cardiac Conan, the 76 years of age kettle bell lifter that only really started living after his first heart attack.

Age 63 Elevation 13000 ft Without further ado, Jerry Gray’s story: My story begins October 13, 1980, at the age of 39, that’s when I had my first heart attack.

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At the time I was more interested in my career, was going through my second divorce and unfortunately was a heavy smoker. Smoking, stress, poor diet, no regular exercise.

All of a sudden my life was falling apart all around me, and I had to make some positive changes. After my first heart attack, I quit smoking, watched my diet and started working out on a regular basis.

Soon I was going to training camps, competing in tournaments and getting fairly good. During the later part of the 80s I was competing in masters divisions on a national level.

Around 1984 I was asked if I would donate my time and coach a collegiate sport team at Ferris State University, which I agreed to. I was in charge of the National Collegiate Championships for 5 years as well as the Midwest regionals.

In 1990 my team Ferris State finished 2nd in the nation at UC Berkley in CA. In 1989, I was invited to a week-long coaches' workshop at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO.

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Jerry Gray Completes Marathon This was an awesome decade with lots of new adventures. On the bright side, during my yearly weeklong backpacking adventures into the Rocky Mountains with my kids, I met my wife.

On the downside, the heart disease raised its ugly head. One month later, I was in Glacier National Park with my kids backpacking for a week.

Again in 1999, 3 months before we got married, I suffered another heart attack which required another stent. It was Liberty’s goal to earn a pro card in female body building, which she did in the spring of 2007.

She then went onto competing in a pro show in Washington DC. I forgot to mention she was also a 3rd Dan in TAE Won do, which she had practiced for 13 years.

Needless to say, she talked me into entering a few body building shows. On the other hand, being in my early 60s I built a good base for my training today at 76.

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Want to start your kettle bell training journey now? For the price of a meal, you can get your hands on one of the best books to get started with kettle bell training.

Liberty bought me a couple of kettle bells for my 63rd birthday. After a year on the kettle bells, I told Liberty I wanted to go to Pavel’s 3 day ROC camp.

Liberty then opened her first gym for TAE Won do and kettle bells in 2007. After we received our ROC, I did a search for others that might be kettle bell training.

In 2007, Ken originally had a couple of small competitions in kettle bell sport in the backroom of a gym in Benton, MI. I give Ken a lot of credit for his foresight into the future of kettle bell sport.

BTW, Liberty was the overall best female lifter at that initial meet in 2008. In 2009 and 2010, Ken took the IFF Kettle bell competition to The Arnold in Columbus, OH, which Liberty and I plus our team made the journey down to compete.

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Liberty opened up another location in Grand Rapids, MI. It was during these early years of competing in Kettle bell Sport that I also taught fitness and kettle bell sport classes for Liberty’s gym, Fitness.

Jerry Gray Competes Kettle bell Sport In July 2011, I went down to Texas for a 2-day Certification with Sergey Runner INSFA group. I was rushed to the hospital Saturday, they scented me that afternoon and wanted to keep me there for 4 days.

Three weeks later I was with my kid’s backpacking in the Wind River Range of Wyoming right where I wanted to be. So for about the past 10 years I have been training people with kettle bells.

I use a combination of barbells, kettle bells, hard style and sport. I love to help people get fit or to step on the platform.

It was a great adventure to make the USA Team and compete in the UK Worlds in Dublin in 2015 where I placed second in the Biathlon with 16 kg kettle bells. I hired Ken Blackburn to be my coach and prepare for the team completion and UK.

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Jerry Gray IFF Kettle bell Sport How does your age affect your training and recovery? I start off my day with a couple of cups of coffee and catch up on the news and FB.

If I’m in competition mode, I’ll do one of Coach Blackburn’s workouts. If not in competition mode, I’ll play with different reps and sets of kettle bells in preparation for my evening class.

I like to get in one good barbell dead lift workout a week. I start eating around mid-day, maybe 1-2 protein shakes per day.

She wanted to pursue bodybuilding, I was lifting and playing racquetball. Since I started the kettle bells, I’ve been back at my marathon weight for 8 years, 175, down from 205# in 2001.

My current doctor likes the kettle bell work that I do. This type of training will add more collateral arteries to the heart muscle.

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My advice would be to start your day with a brisk walk of a couple of miles, rain, sunshine, heat or cold. I feel that it touches all the bases, strength, posture, flexibility, and cardio.

I want to keep on doing what I like doing, kettle bell training and teaching, backpacking, golfing, skiing, biking, traveling, wife and family. I would have to say, “Start Slow” in whatever part of your life you want to change.

Change causes chaos, which needs to be worked through before moving forward. End of life studies shows that people with the highest cholesterol live the longest.

People with the lowest cholesterol levels have the highest dementia. Surveying 4 years Instructor Part-Time Ferris State Univ.

Show Jerry your support, and help others see that there is a way, there is a solution, it just takes persistence and effort.

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Other Articles You Might Be Interested In

01: Learn How To Kettlebell Swing
02: Shoes For Kettlebell Training
03: Nutrition For Kettlebell Training
04: Nutrition For Kettlebell Training
Sources
1 thekettlebelllocker.com - https://thekettlebelllocker.com/nutrition
2 www.menshealth.com - https://www.menshealth.com/uk/workouts/g35053862/15-minute-kettlebell-home-workout/
3 www.turbulencetraining.com - https://www.turbulencetraining.com/KBAffiliates/articles/kettlebell-training-diet.shtml
4 aaptiv.com - https://aaptiv.com/magazine/kettlebell-training
5 www.lifehack.org - https://www.lifehack.org/573737/the-benefits-kettlebell-exercises-you-might-not-know