Like some other newer people here, it wasn't until March of this year that I began using kettle bells as my only training tool. By the end I was able to do the full routine with a 28 kg bell and could easily press a 32 kg.
I farted around for a bit trying to figure out what I wanted to do next that didn't involve workouts that lasted up to two hours on the heavier days (as was the case with Top). Then I realized I could not even do a Turkish Getup with the 28 kg kettle bell I had just spent so much time pressing.
I started very light and slow to make sure my technique was solid. But because I am going to be drinking tonight I decided, fuck it, I'm going to try to give myself a good reason to celebrate.
“The kettle bell or girl is a cast-iron weight (resembling a cannonball with a handle) used to perform ballistic exercises that combine cardiovascular, strength and flexibility training. Russian kettle bells are traditionally measured in weight by Food, in which (rounded to metric units) is defined as 16 kilograms (35 lb)” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Kettle bell).
Most kettle bell exercises use leg, hip, and glute muscles. How the weight feels in your hands might not be a good indicator of how heavy it is to the actual muscles doing the work.
Kettle bells are good for upper body work too and you may need a lighter bell for those, at least in the beginning. Many people on this Subreddit will tell beginners to start with either Simple and Sinister by Strongest and/or Etc Enter The Kettle bell.
A program so that you know what to do and how to progress when you get stronger and your work capacity increases. Simple and Sinister is the often recommended book as it includes both of these and is rather inexpensive.
Mike Mahler's 'The Kettle bell Solution for Size and Strength'(DVD only, but he published the program for free here) Tim Ferris's 'The 4-hour body' advocates a minimalist kettle bell program for weight loss.
Really though, if you've completed one of the beginner programs above and haven't seen any significant change the problem is most likely your diet. There are lots of great resources over at /r/fitness to help you assess and adjust your diet.
If you take care of the calluses (filing, softening) they won't be much of an issue. A ripped callus will hurt and make training difficult.
Use of chalk may make calluses worse since it dries your hands. How you grip the bell plays a significant role in callus forming.
The key point is to move with your hips at the beginning of the movement through to the completion of the swing. You start by swinging the kettle bell down between your legs and then swing the bell up to chest level by exploding with your hips while tightening your core by locking out your knees, pull up your thighs, tighten your gluts and your abs.
Long Cycle : Clean and Jerks done without resting the kettle bell. Short Cycle : A single Clean followed by multiple reps of Jerks.
Tabatha : A HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) protocol that prescribes 20 seconds of high intensity work (e.g. sprints) followed by 10 seconds of rest for an 8-minute round. Although popular for fat loss, no studies have been done on its efficiency for this purpose.
The biggest benefit of the Tabatha protocol is increasing VO2 max. Viking Protocol : Somewhat of an offshoot of the Tabatha protocol, but is based on a work rest ratio of 1:1 in 15 second intervals or 35 second intervals.
Extremely high volume in nature, the Viking Protocol is done for a 20-minute session with recommended reps per work time. See the Viking Warrior Conditioning book from DragonDoor for proper explanation.
SST : Secret Service Snatch Test: A ten-minute Snatch test where you can set the kettle bell down and switch hands as many times as needed. Hard Style : “Pavel Tsatsouline has designed a program of weight training that uses the kettle bell as a means to enhance certain aspects of weight lifting, rather than as a goal for high numbers as in Kettle bell Sport.
Focusing on the high muscular tension techniques used by powerlifters to lift massive amounts of weight, and the martial disciplines Most events are ten minutes in length and the participant is not allowed to put the kettle bell down.
Thus, the person is trying to conserve as much energy in their movement, so they can be more efficient over this duration of time. Some key features of Kettle bell sport is that only one hand can be on the bell at a time.
The thumb helps lock the index finger onto the kettle bell, so grip strength is not as big of a factor. The Clean and Jerk which men use two bells at a time and women use one.
“ Hard style, especially in its incarnation as Strong first, is a nested philosophy about training as such, focusing on a very small number of qualities trained submaximally in order to achieve a wide range of results. I honestly don't think you can understand modern HS without having a familiarity with the Easy Strength templates and the principles behind them.
I think Pavel would probably agree that the programming principles are more important than any of the particular lifts. Those principles generally are 1) Have a high frequency of exposure 2) focus on strength and rate of force development as primary qualities 3) don't train anywhere near failure 4) work to be able to achieve high levels of tension and quick relaxation 5) individual workloads should leave you feeling better than when you started the workout.
SAS is basically Easy Strength as applied to the program minimum. So, if you get SAS, I would probably advise picking up Easy Strength, and then only using Enter the Kettle bell and Power to the People for technical pointers if you need them.
Note that these general programming principles leave plenty of room for barbell work, easy running, and body weight work. You just need to be able to do your swings with the 32 kg bell for short sets in such a way that they get counted.
Being good at KB swings is an incredibly low priority behind gymnastic skills, Olympic lifts, general aerobic development, and intermediate strength at the power lifts. The energy system and muscle groups hit by the American swing will be blasted by damn near every frequently contested CrossFit lift, so I would be shocked if a competitor needed special programming for the one KB movement they do.
There's a variety of programming from some very world-class coaches, but quite frankly, I defy anyone to look at Valery, Fedora Fueled, and Ivan Denison and tell me they all have the same technique for the snatch. They all rely on some underlying principles, such as relaxation, breathing to alleviate tension, sparing the grip, and maintaining a pendulum....but there are a variety of ways to do it.
If you are looking for more general fitness guidelines there is a wonderful breakdown in /r/fitness wiki. Good instruction will save time and help avoid injuries.
Fix obvious issues, train a couple of days, then redo it and then send it. :-) Be properly dressed, that is, don't do a form check video in your underwear even if you normally train like that.
It is useful for commenters to know what technique you are going for: Hard style (Pavel's/SFG/ROC), kettle bell sport, something else (whose instructions are you following?). You may have seen my 1-month post, where I shared my beginner gains hype.
Now, after 134 sessions, I've finally achieved timed Simple standard: 24KG 10×10 one-handed swings in 04:14 + 1 min rest + 16KG 5×2 Thus in 08:26. They target stuff that I am notoriously bad at: grip strength and cardio.
Switch between normal and thumbless grip to manage fatigue and callus pain I am happy that I've managed to follow a training program for so long.
My glutes are more defined, my waist is thinner and my anterior pelvic tilt appears to be gone. I've also forgotten when was the last time I had back pained while sitting in the office.
It is simple, it is only 30 min a day and its return of investment is mad. BTW thanks r/ kettle bell community for posting and discussing form checks.
A: There's even more to say on this subject, but the most frequent answer in this sub is the “Simple and Sinister” program designed by popular kettle bell instructor Pavel Tsatsouline. It is described in his book Simple and Sinister (which you should buy if you intend to follow the program), but the basics -- enough to get started -- are detailed below.
But I think there are several reasons why good quality kettle bells are worth springing for. Good quality kettle bells have smooth handles of uniform thickness and comfortable texture.
And, they won't have molding seams making them wobbly or hard to hold. With that in mind, here are a bunch of brands of kettle bell you won't regret buying.
Kettle bell Kings offers 'free shipping' in the US; in other words, the cost of shipping is flat regardless of how far you live from their Austin, TX headquarters, and added into the price of the bell. 2021 Update: in the last few years (at least since COVID-19) KB Kings prices have gone up dramatically.
A 35 lb powder coat kettle bell is currently $165 (perpetually 'marked down' from $195) with free shipping. CFF offers 'free shipping' in the US; in other words, the cost of shipping is flat regardless of how far you live from their warehouses (in Lancaster, PA and Phoenix, AZ); and added into the price of the bell.
A 35 lb Powder Coat kettle bell from CFF is $78 shipped as of this writing. Rogue is the brand of choice for many high-end CrossFit gyms/boxes, and their bells are built to take daily abuse.
Frustratingly, VF currently only offers FedEx Ground for kettle bells, making their shipping costs significantly higher than other brands, particularly if you live farther away. Again Faster is a company I don't see mentioned much around this Subreddit; but I personally own several kettle bells of theirs that I really like, so I'm putting them on the list.
The finish in their kettle bells is smoother than Rogues, but still drippy; and have a very high-quality feel. Here is a recent video comparing Kettle bell Kings to Rogue and CAP.
(Summary: he thinks Kettle bell Kings are the best, but recommends Rogue as good at their price point.) If you think you might be on the outer edges of the bell curve, either because you're an experienced weightlifter or because you've been sedentary for a while and are maybe of below-average strength, you've got a few options.
Strong people will still find 20 or 35 lbs useful for learning form and aerobic work; and people who aren't so strong will get stronger quickly while learning the techniques. If you're still unsure, you can head to a gym or store stocked with kettle bells, or even dumbbells.
One metric is to choose the heaviest kettle bell (or comparable weight dumbbell) you can comfortably overhead press for reps. But if it is frequently recommended for beginners (and experienced athletes new to kettle bell training as well).
It's built around only two exercises, so there is a lower skill barrier to getting started than programs with more movements to learn. If it's between spending half an hour doing your first SAS workout, or half an hour reviewing different programs trying to decide, my recommendation is to start with Simple and Sinister today, and shop around for your ideal beginner program tomorrow.
Gradually reduce rest until you can complete 100 reps of 1-handed swings with perfect form in 5 minutes. Eventually, you'll become strong enough to take 10 minutes to do your 10 reps (5 per side), maintaining a roughly 1:1 work:rest ratio (alternating 30 seconds of work and 30 seconds of rest for 10 minutes).
The book is absolutely worth buying, because it goes into incredible detail about how to perform the movements safely, and how to be smart about progressing up through the program. (2020 note: The Revised Edition of Simple & Sinister presents a routine that is very similar to the above, but incorporating a progression that is even more effective than what I've described.
Rather than update my post to share the revised ed, which feels like plagiarism, my suggestion for a beginner is: feel free to use the above as a starting point, but buy the book as soon as possible to get the most up-to-date version of the program.) In the simplest terms, Hard style focuses a little more on explosive power, and shorter sets with heavier weights.
Competition kettle bells typically use a uniform color scheme to distinguish different weights. Hard style kettle bells are often black, sometimes with weight-distinguishing colored stripes where the handle meets the bell.
What kind of kettle bell you buy depends on what program you decide to follow. I wrote a post a few years ago meant to answer the most frequently asked questions in this Subreddit at that time.
The FAQ is a great list of resources, but it is maybe a bit overwhelming for someone coming in for some super-basic advice. (If you find this post helpful, I'd selfishly love it if you shot me a one-sentence message to let me know.
Subscribe to the largest kettle bell YouTube channel for workouts, tutorials, complexes, and more. Kettle bells are easy to store, relatively inexpensive, and provide an efficient way to work nearly every part of the body in a short period of time.
I use a simple five point rating scale to score each kettle bell : I’ve tested multiple kettle bells for this article, but to keep things simple I’m only listing the options that earned at least three stars and up.
The finish on these kettle bells is extremely drippy with no seams or burrs anywhere on the handles or bodies, with a coating that feels like chalk to the touch. Plus, I personally like the fact that these kettle bells are made in the USA by a small company.
Rep Fitness doesn’t bundle shipping into the costs of their products, and their base pricing is very reasonable. These kettle bells are a great value for the price, especially if you live close to Colorado to save on shipping costs.
Rogue Fitness Powder Coat kettle bells are decent, but not standouts. They are a pretty good deal if you live close to Ohio, otherwise the cost of shipping makes them much less appealing.
If you have large hands and prefer an aggressive grip, Rogue powder coat kettle bells could be the right option for you. However, they don’t really stand out enough to differentiate them from the rest of the color-coded powder coat kettle bells I’ve tested.
There are better options in terms of grip and finish, and the non-standard colors they use for weights drive me nuts. Bottom line, don’t pay full price for Perform Better kettle bells.
My review criteria is primarily centered on kettle bells I can use at home and at work with minimal need for chalk. If you’re interested in diving deeper I’ve written a kettle bell buyer’s guide that answers every question I had when I first started.
It also goes into detail on the criteria I look for, but the short version is a clean finish, a durable coating, and a properly sized handle. Cast-iron kettle bells are widely available at many price points, which I consider to be a very good thing.
There are a couple of companies making steel competition-style kettle bells aimed at the home fitness market, which offer the benefit of consistently sized kettle bells without incurring the usual steel competition cost. I’ve developed several kettle bell workouts for the club, ranging in intensity from beginner to high-level intermediate.
All of my workouts are documented on their own page and I plan to add to the list as time goes on. If you prefer to follow along to instructor-led workouts, I also highly recommend the well-designed program put together by Kettle bell Kings via their new Living. Fit online platform.
The Living. Fit programs include workouts for all levels of kettle bell enthusiasts, from beginner to expert. They also have programs targeted for healthy eating and battle ropes for a more well-rounded approach to health and fitness.
According to Tim Ferris the parts are supposed to cost under $10, not counting the weight plates. First, it takes the guesswork out of deciding what size kettle bell to buy for two hand work.
I was able to experiment with different weights to find a starting point I was comfortable with, eventually settling on 20 kg (44lbs). If you don’t already have a background lifting weights or being active, or if you are out of shape, consider working with a certified kettle bell trainer to get instructed in proper technique.
Plumbing parts weren’t designed to sustain a dynamic load swinging in an arc. I’ll get into the details shortly, but I first want to comment on the excellent packaging they used to ship their kettle bells.
This is a far cry from other vendors like Rogue Fitness, who typically just throw the bell in a box with some cardboard shims and hope for the best ¯\_()_/¯ I took this kettle bell outside on a hot Texas summer day to use for an Afterburner workout from my list of Kettle bell Club workouts, and I was able to keep hold of it without resorting to chalk despite my hands sweating like crazy.
This is an important point because the factories where kettle bells are made are dirty, dusty places. There’s lots of dust flying around that accumulates on the surface of the bells while they sit patiently waiting for paint.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, very few companies take the extra step to clean the bells before paint because it adds time and expense to the process. At the time I published this article, Kettle bell Kings is likely the only vendor taking this extra step, which results in a very durable coating.
Most of the cheap kettle bells for sale on Amazon and other discount vendors fall into this category, I’ve even reviewed a few of them for this article. If you’re unfamiliar with Create, it’s an extremely durable thin-film ceramic coating developed primarily for use as a protective finish for firearms.
Create is extremely resistant to abrasion, corrosion and chemicals, and looks pretty cool at the same time. In recent years a little fitness equipment companies have started offering create as a coating option for barbells.
The create coating will cost a little extra, but the added durability means that kettle bell will last practically forever. Additionally, the create option allows for a nearly infinite amount of customization and personalization.
It looks like it could take a decent amount of abuse from a careless shipper, but the lack of reinforcement straps around the box could be an issue if the kettle bell has to travel a long distance. The finish on the Innit kettle bell is clean, although the textured coating is thick enough to potentially mask small imperfections.
Aesthetically, there are spots on the kettle bell where I can see how the coating application ran down the handle and dried, similar to how spray paint drips when applied too thickly. I thought maybe this was a fluke, so I intentionally banged the kettle bells together again with medium force and another chip flaked off.
The coating chipped several more times during the testing period through normal use, mainly from getting bumped against other kettle bells. It’s a small difference, but enough to force an adjustment of technique for exercises like the overhead snatch.
Innit Labs kettle bells are a good budget option, but not the most durable of the bunch. If you do buy these, take wonderful care of them because the finish is prone to chipping.
The finish on the kettle bell is very clean, and although the casting seams are slightly visible on the body due to how thin an e-coating is, they are not prevalent on the handle at all. The Matrix Elite Precision line of kettle bells have a reformulated e-coat intended to increase grip over a traditional e-coating.
The unique aspect of Matrix Precision Elite kettle bell is the redesigned handle. The increased height means the kettle bell will sit just a bit lower on the forearm rather than resting right on the wrist bones, which is more comfortable for some people.
The reformulated e-coat is stickier than the e-coats on the Dragon Door and even the Matrix Classic line. The friction is alleviated with light chalk use though, which is a small trade off for the durability and comfort the Matrix Elite Precision kettle bell provides.
The finish on the Rogue kettle bell is good, although I can feel a few small flecks of excess metal on the handle when I run my hand over it. The powder coat on the Rogue kettle bells is textured, with a feel of fine grit sandpaper.
The handles of the Rogue kettle bells are among the thickest of the test group, making them more suitable for people with large hands. The price is good too, especially if you live close to Ohio and can take advantage of a lower shipping cost.
They are a pretty good deal if you live close to Ohio, otherwise the cost of shipping makes them much less appealing. If you have large hands and prefer an aggressive grip, Rogue powder coat kettle bells could be the right option for you.
CFF offers a full line of athletic equipment, including kettle bells. The form-fitting foam is an extra level of protection that’s typically only used for shipping more costly competition steel kettle bells.
The coating has a slightly aggressive texture, which works very well for maintaining grip without needing chalk. The combination of finish and textured coating will hold a lot of chalk if needed.
It’s clear to me a lot of thought went into the creation of the K2 and it shows in every aspect of the design and packaging. I included Rep Fitness kettle bells in last year’s review, and they garnered four stars during testing.
Not content with that, the folks at Rep Fitness have upped their game by improving on the issues I noted in the previous review. The Rep Fitness kettle bells came well packed, with plenty of foam inserts and even bubble wrap on the 20 kg.
Thankfully, I didn’t have to take him up on this but it’s nice to see this kind of focus on customer service. The powder coating has a very smooth chalk-like texture that provides a decent amount of grip without the need for chalk.
The coating is also really durable, these kettle bells have withstood several hard blows without chipping. They offer an excellent value for the price, especially if you live close to Colorado and you can save on shipping.
Fringe Sport is a strength & conditioning equipment company based in Austin Texas. Since they’re local, I paid them a visit to pick up a few of their Prime Kettle bells to review.
Every Prime Kettle bell comes packaged in a form-fitting cardboard box and wrapped with reinforcement straps. The finish on the Prime Kettle bells is clean and the bottoms are ground completely flat.
The powder coat kettle bell is evenly applied and provides a decent amount of grip. The grip the is on par with the majority of powder coat kettle bells I’ve tested, providing a smooth yet “drippy” texture.
When I first got them, I was surprised at how much larger the handle diameters were when compared to similarly sized kettle bells from other vendors. I’m not a tall guy (5’8”) and many of the people I work with in my kettle bell club are even shorter than I am, both men and women.
The handles do run fairly thick though, so these are a great option for people with large hands. Fringe Sport runs frequent sales, so if you’re patient you could score a pretty good deal on these.
American Barbell is a strength & conditioning equipment company based in San Diego California. Their barbells have a solid reputation in the home gym community, and they’ve somewhat recently added kettle bells to their product lineup.
American Barbell kettle bells have a very clean finish and a slightly textured coat. The bottoms are ground flat and wider than most of the other options, making them a very stable base for exercises like renegade rows.
The handle dimensions overall are on the thinner side of the spectrum, making these kettle bells very comfortable for use by people with smaller hands. Price-wise, American Barbell powder coats are super-cheap, but that savings is offset by the cost of pricing.
I ordered a 16 kg Titan Fitness kettle bell off Amazon, and I was shocked at how bad it was. For starters, the Titan Fitness kettle bell shipped in a single cardboard box with no padding or reinforcement whatsoever.
The Titan kettle bell is the absolute worst I’ve seen so far in terms of how bad the finish was. I really don’t understand how a big-name fitness company could even think about putting their brand on a product like this.
After contacting Titan customer service about a replacement and being told I wouldn’t be able to get one for two months, I simply sent it back. It’s so bad it has the dubious honor of forcing me to create a ‘zero stars’ rating, because it’s completely unusable.
The big draw is the price, I picked up a 35lb cast-iron kettle bell for $40 shipped, which is amazingly cheap. The bottom is not ground completely flat and the coating is just a glossy black paint.
I tried using it without any chalk and found that the tackiness made it more difficult for me to do snatches and cleans. The handle diameter is on the larger side of the options tested, although I no longer have it available to measure.
On the other hand, if saving money is your primary concern and you’re willing to sacrifice some quality, the Yes4All is hard to beat. I know this because they’ve started selling their own brand of Amazon Basics Kettle bells.
The only difference between them is that the AmazonBasics kettle bell has no branding whatsoever, only the weight stamped on both sides. Just don’t expect much for your money, since the Amazon Basics kettle bell is a cheaply made product.
The bottom is not ground completely flat and the coating is just a glossy black paint. Having said that, it’s still perfectly usable for swings, snatches, cleans, etc and I’d be hard-pressed to find a cheaper option for someone that doesn’t want to spend much on a kettle bell.
The tackiness of the paint makes it more difficult to do snatches and cleans with this kettle bell, but that’s nothing a light dusting of chalk on the handle can’t fix. The handle diameter is on the larger side of the options tested, measurements will be added later.
If saving money is your primary concern and you’re willing to sacrifice some quality, the Amazon Basics kettle bell is a decent option. CAP introduced a new powder coat kettle bell into their product lineup sometime within the last couple of years, and I’m finally including it in the roundup.
The finish on the CAP kettle bell is good, although I can feel a few small flecks of excess metal on the handle when I run my hand over it. The powder coat on the CAP kettle bell is textured, with a feel of fine grit sandpaper.
The handles of the CAP powder coat kettle bells are among the thickest of the test group, making them more suitable for people with large hands. I was learning how to perform the kettle bell snatch at the time I owned these, and the burrs kept digging into my palms during the transitions.
I toughed it out as long as I could but eventually used a metal file to smooth down the handle and make the bell a little more usable. I painted it with Mausoleum to try and stem further rust damage, which is why the kettle bell is colored brown in pictures.
The enamel finish on the large bell was extremely smooth and hard to hold once I broke a sweat. I don’t recommend CAP enamel coated or plain “cast iron” kettle bells for your home gym.
In fact, I actively recommend you stay away from them entirely because you will inevitably rue the day you purchased them. As a result, they have a large amount of brand recognition in the kettle bell community.
The recognition is reflected in the price because Dragon Door kettle bells are the most expensive option included in this review. They don’t look great, but the coat on all of them is in okay shape considering they were stored year-round in a garage subject to three years of humid central Texas summers.
The ROC kettle bells all have prevalent seams left over from the casting process on the handles. These seams often pinched the skin of my palms, indicating a poor finishing and grinding process.
That extra money is clearly not being invested back into quality control at Dragon Door. There’s always a chance Dragon Door has upped their game since these bells were originally made.
Without knowing exactly what your current kettle bells look/feel like, I can tell you that things such as seams could indeed have been a problem exclusive to a batch or perhaps they were kettelbells that made it past inspection.” In fact, several of the companies offer no guarantee whatsoever and will not accept a return at all unless your purchase is defective.
I’m willing to give Dragon Door the benefit of the doubt and assume their newer kettle bells have a higher quality finish than what I currently own. The best things Dragon Door ROC kettle bells offer is a 1-year satisfaction guarantee and a durable coating.
However, given the quality of the competition these factors aren’t enough to offset their substantially higher cost. Whatever it is, the coat provides just enough grip with low friction to allow for high rep work without needing chalk.
The burrs only exist on the smaller kettle bells that I don’t use as much, which might be why they haven’t been an issue for me. One minor nit to pick is with the quality of the paint job on the faces of the kettle bells.
This is a purely cosmetic issue that doesn’t take away from the usability of the kettle bells at all, but it does detract from the overall perception of quality. In case you didn’t know, prior to the pandemic pretty much every brand of kettle bells was manufactured in China.
Then coronavirus hit, people were stuck at home, and supply chains out of China were disrupted. This was the perfect storm for a massive run on fitness equipment, and several months later most companies are still having trouble keeping products in stock.
The finish on the Rogue kettle bell is slightly on the rough side, which isn’t a bad thing because it provides some texture for improved grip. The handle of the Rogue E-Coat kettle bell is probably the thickest of the test group so far, making them more suitable for people with large hands.
To be honest, I was excited to review this kettle bell since it’s the first one I’ve owned that is made in the USA. They are a pretty good deal if you live close to Ohio, otherwise the cost of shipping makes them much less appealing.
USA-Iron is a brand-new player in the kettle bell space, a scrappy upstart company forged in the crucible of the COVID-19 pandemic (see what I did there? As the name implies, USA-Iron is an entirely U.S.-based operation and is among the first few companies to manufacture their own line of kettle bells in the United States.
In case you’ve been asleep for most of 2020, prepare to be rudely awakened…prior to COVID-19 most (if not all) kettle bells were manufactured in China. Then the ‘RNA hit, people were stuck at home, and supply chains out of China were severely disrupted.
This was the perfect storm for a massive run on fitness equipment, and several months later most companies are still having trouble keeping kettle bells in stock. USA-Iron has stepped into the breach producing high quality kettle bells to make sure we can keep on swinging, and I’m very glad they did.
The powder coat finish on USA-Iron kettle bell feels very good in my hand during swings and snatches, with a slightly rough texture. I was told by the company owner that the powder coat paint formulation was specifically chosen to provide some texture for improved grip, and that choice is evident during use.
USA-Iron is one of the few companies I’m aware of that adds a separate wash step to the manufacturing process to clean dust off the kettle bell before the powder coat is applied. This is an important step because the factories where kettle bells are made are dirty, dusty places.
Lots of that dust settles on the surface of the bells while they sit patiently waiting for paint. The end result is a very durable finish with a textured coating that will hold plenty of chalk if needed.
I don’t knock them for this though, since the kettle bells are high quality and some people will really like the thicker handle size. However, people with smaller hands may find the thicker handle size more difficult to hold during longer workout sessions.
If that weren’t reason enough to support them, I like that the company is small and open to feedback, and the people there are very committed to producing a high quality product. The handle dimensions are on the larger end of the spectrum, so if you have small or medium hands you may want to look at other options.
The guy narrating the video, Pavel Tstatsouline, was affiliated with Dragon Door when the video was filmed so the process likely shows how Dragon Door kettle bells were made back in the day. You’ve breached the barbells and dominated dumbbells, but if you’re still steering clear of kettle bells you’re missing out on arguably the best burn at the gym.
Think about a baseball bat, says trainer Jason C. Brown, creator and owner of certification program Kettle bell Athletics. “Kettle bells create a longer lever arm, which requires you to use more force to move an equal weight the same distance,” Brown says.
The general rule of thumb is the more joints involved, the heavier the kettle bell weight you can use. The dead lift is a multi joint move, so the average guy can probably handle 32 kg/70 lbs here to start, Brown says.
When you feel confident that you have the form down sans resistance, reach for a 12 kg/26 lb kettle bell. Since form is so imperative here, Lopez says you shouldn’t move up a weight until you’re able to maintain perfect vertically with your arm, keep the elbow fully locked throughout all 14 steps, and feel comfortable going slow (most people rush due to discomfort).
But because it doesn’t require swinging momentum or extension, a carry has a lower risk of injury than other kettle bell moves, which means you can go a bit heavier. Grab a kettle bell that’s the equivalent of half your body weight to carry in each hand, Brown recommends.
A lot of people are under the impression that the use of kettle bells are some gimmicky fad that burst on the fitness scene within the last decade or so. The benefits of Kettle bell Training are backed by valid science & extensive studies conducted in the exercise industry along with many hours of practical application experience.
While referencing all this science and studies lends credence to the effectiveness of using kettle bells, I only need to trust my own experiences with these amazing implements and the great results I have gotten myself and for those who have practiced with them under my guidance. A supreme benefit to Training with kettle bells is that they elevate the heart rate and work many major muscle groups at the same time.
If you were to read no further, just that reason alone would be enough to position most people for success in their quest for their ideal body composition. Unfortunately, that hack trainer over at the 24-hour super-duper mega techno gym considers throwing you on a treadmill like some mindless hamster followed by doing some curls and crunches a total body workout.
Spare yourself the disappointment and frustration of participating in thoughtless and ineffective workouts like this if you really want to improve your fitness. Many of my reasons I state in this article for why I use a kettle bell in my training also cover what a total body workout should consist of.
Hopefully, you realize that our stay on this planet is finite and that we don’t have a lot of time to waste doing unproductive things. I train with kettle bells because they allow me to design safe, brief, sustainable workouts to experience Maximum Fitness in Minimal Time leading to Stellar Results.
Everybody talks about the ‘core” and all of its virtues, but really never train it too productively from what I see while walking around gyms in different cities I visit. Rarely do I witness worthwhile or meaningful efforts to train the core besides people throwing together some type of crunch or setup routine they have etched in their brains from somewhere in time.
Many kettle bell exercises will give you a metabolic effect similar to sprinting, BUT without beating the hell out of your knees, ankles or joints. The challenge is to pursue a fitness program consisting of exercises that will not only give you a productive workout, but promote an existence of rich, pain free movement as well.
High-repetition kettle bell exercises, such as swings and their variations really get your heart rate up and push the limits of your cardiovascular endurance. Kettle bell exercises push your muscles, especially those in your core, to keep working repeatedly for long periods of time.
This builds muscular endurance, which helps maintain posture and form in your workouts as well as throughout everyday life activities. Good posture prevents injuries, unhealthy muscle tension, and other aches and pains we all seem to have accumulated to varying degrees over our lifetime.
The good news is that you can get incredible fitness and health results with just 2-3 short kettle bell workouts per week in conjunction with a well-designed program. I loved the fact that I could get in a challenging and fun kettle bell workout that literally addressed every fitness goal I valued with a minimal time investment that yielded maximum results.
I’m convinced that sound, thoughtful and challenging physical training in general does wonders for your mental well-being and will contribute to a positive outlook on life. Furthermore, kettle bell exercises are extremely efficient at building lean muscle mass, which elevates the metabolism and helps maintain a healthy body weight long term.
Kettle bell training will help you forge your ideal body without wasting a lot of unproductive time in the gym. If you value a physique that looks as good as it moves and will get you excited about parading around in a bikini or bathing suit again then the kettle bell is the fitness ally you should partner up with.
Add new exercises only if you can justify its purpose in furthering your training goals, it’s safe and you can perform them competently. Beginner, intermediate, and advanced trainees will all be challenged since there are so many exercise regressions and progressions that can be applied in a kettle bell training program to keep all levels engaged and moving forward with their goals.
If you can’t move well and with a requisite amount of strength, then your quality of life and performance of your everyday activities will suffer. Heed my warning and train in such a way where you will promote and preserve your joint mobility and pain free movement quality.
Renowned coach Steve Maxwell stated that in his many years of teaching fitness worldwide, he has never had a client tell him that they wished they had done more bench presses over their lifetime. Instead, they all overwhelmingly regret not practicing and staying connected to exercises that improved their movement quality in order to live an active pain free life.
This is a great warning that I wished I would have heeded in my younger training days, but fortunately it is rarely too late to improve your movement quality if you have the desire to take action and practice meaningful exercises. I absolutely love the comradery of training with others in the mutual achievement of fitness goals as I am the consummate social animal and am not the grim guy with the ear buds training in the corner of the gym screaming to the heavens on every cheat rep with a perpetual scowl on my face.
But if you want to torch the fat, increase mobility, get lean & strong, develop killer legs, tighten your butt & perform better physically and live a life of active vitality and longevity, then a well-designed kettle bell based program may be for you. If you like the fitness benefits you can experience from training with kettle bells, then take action and dare to transform your body and your quality of life.
Grab a friend, spouse or loved one or go it alone and give kettle bell training a shot if you want to experience meaningful results, achieve that ideal body and even have some fun and excitement. Many gyms and health clubs wanting to jump on the kettle bell bandwagon and cash in on their dynamic reputation and “cool” status for propelling one to their fitness goals will make the knee-jerk decision to add them to their facility with little thought as to their proper use or how to integrate them safely into their master plan if they have one at all.
When confronted with attitude and logic such as this, I usually politely excuse myself quickly as dealing with clueless characters like these types is pointless. People get hurt when they don’t take the time to learn safe, sustainable technique or take instruction from inept, unqualified, unprepared instructors who do you, me, the kettle bell and the fitness industry a colossal disservice by muddying the effectiveness and reputation of this excellent tool.
Regarding scenarios such as this, trainees and trainers will usually get hurt at some point due to their lack of proper technique training and then ridiculously blame the kettle bell for their shortcomings instead of their own ineptness and failure to learn proper technique and program design as to the reason for their failure or injury. In the wrong hands the kettle bell becomes nothing more than an Attractive Liability for irresponsible gym owners, trainers and members who are either ignorant of sound technique or their colossal egos dictate that they are above learning from others with greater skill than their own.
I politely questioned one gym owner why he lets his admittedly unqualified staff have free rein of the kettle bells without any legitimate training. I told him you are allowing your staff to teach horrendous technique to your client base in a dangerously unsustainable manner.
While I use and advocate many fitness tools, the kettle bell does represent the foundation of my training play book because they simply are that damn good, and they work. With proper instruction, kettle bells are easy to learn, yet will keep you challenged and progressing without boring the hell out of you.
I have been using kettle bells for over a decade and I have yet to experience boredom or lack of enthusiasm and I have sampled just about every fitness tool and method out there.