Kettle bell training was “discovered” by U.S. athletes and particularly mixed martial arts fighters. Kettle bell workouts are designed to increase strength, endurance, agility, and balance.
However, since practically any KB exercise can also be executed with a dumbbell, it is reasonable to ask why you should use a kettle bell instead? 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. 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. So when reviewing the 7 kettle bell exercise for seniors please realize that not everyone always fits into the same bracket.
If you are in a position where you feel that kettle bell training could be right for you then this guide will act as a great starting point for seniors and older adults. Increases bone density due to the additional forces put through the joints and bones by the kettle bells Adds muscle mass, something that you lose quickly as you reach older age Improves balance, great for preventing falls and better footing Increases grip strength, another attribute that disappears quickly as you get older Improves mobility, nothing symbolizes old age like an inability to move naturally Rehabilitates joint issues, the frequent nutritional pumping movements of kettle bell training improves joint health Improves circulation, kettle bell training actively pumps the blood around the body for better circulation Increases cardiovascular health, your heart rate will be elevated and lungs forced to work harder Raises metabolic rate for fat loss, an increase in metabolism means more calories burnt at rest Increases confidence, feel stronger, mobile, fitter and have better balance for a more confident you Improve mental health and produces a more positive attitude towards life in general
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.
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.
I recommend that you run through a full joint mobility routine before each workout. 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. 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.
Watch a video of the wrist mobility warm up exercises below: 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.
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.
Watch a video of the kettle bell single arm dead lift exercise below: 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. There are not many muscles that the goblet squat doesn’t activate when performed correctly.
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.
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. Always seek professional medical advice and take your time and listen to your body as you exercise.
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. 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.