“This Cold War, its epicenter on Russia’s borders; undertaken amid inflammatory American, Russian and Ukrainian media misinformation; and unfolding without the stabilizing practices that prevented disasters during the preceding Cold War, may be even more perilous.” The power of the swing is generated from the hips while the spine is held perfectly stable and neutral.
At the apex of the swing, the kettle bell is at chest level, and the athlete’s glutes are contracted, quads are engaged, the stomach is rock solid and braced for impact, and lats are actively pulling the shoulders away from the ears. The Russian Swing is a great modality to teach athletes how to break at the abs, lats and glutes while using their bodies in a more efficient manner.
The kettle bell slows quite a bit once it passes the chest on the upswing due to this disadvantage. If you have enough hip drive to get the kettle bell all the way to the overhead American position then you should increase the weight.
Everyone doesn’t have access to heavy or multiple kettle bells and not all fitness enthusiasts want to train for explosive hip drive. If you are a trainer or a client of a boot camp style training session, the American Swing is an excellent way to increase your work capacity.
If you only have access to a light kettle bell, bringing the swing all the way to the overhead position increases the amount of hip drive required to get the kettle bell overhead which, in turn, increases the work capacity of the exercise. In today’s article we’ll cover more than just how to do a Russiankettlebell swing.
Read the entire post or skip ahead using the table of contents below. The Russiankettlebell swing is a great low impact exercise that strengthens many muscles and does not put a ton of stress on the joints.
Because of the hip hinging movement pattern in the exercise you’ll be able to train the glutes and hamstrings. From there, the shoulders, back (mostly lats) are used to help bring the kettle bell to chest height.
Because kettle bell swings may elicit cardiovascular, neuromuscular, and metabolic responses sufficient for improvements in strength, aerobic power, and overall physical fitness. The Russiankettlebell swing can be used for strength and cardiovascular health.
In one study conducted researchers compared thirty minutes of kettle bell swings and dead lifts to walking on a treadmill at a slight incline. The kettle bell workout and treadmill cardio had similar VO2, blood pressure, and calorie burn markers, but the kettle bell workout had a higher rate of perceived exertion (it felt harder) and heart rate.
What this tells us is that kettle bell workouts (and swings) could be a good method for cardiovascular training. The results of one study compared the effects of weight lifting and kettle bell training on vertical jump, strength, and body composition.
Results showed that short-term weightlifting and kettle bell training were effective in increasing strength and power. However, the gains in strength using weightlifting movements were greater than that during kettle bell training.
Just keep in mind that to build strength in the Russiankettlebell swing you need progressive overload. This is totally normal and is creatively called “beginner gains.” Almost anything you do is progressive overload at this point and your body responds very quickly to it.
Grab the kettle bell with both hands and stand up using proper dead lift form. Begin to push your hips back while maintaining a flat torso.
Use the hips and glutes to thrust forward and drive the kettle bell up Maintain relaxed arms as you are doing this. As the kettle bell approaches chest height keep the shoulders from shrugging to the ears.
Knees and hips will lock out as the bell reaches chest to chin height. To hip hinge start by standing with your feet about shoulder width apart.
Continue driving the hips back until your torso is parallel with the ground. Reverse the movement and stand up by contracting you glutes and pushing your hips forward.
Below are a couple of exercises and progressions to help level up your hip hinge game. In a Russiankettlebell swing the kettle bell is brought to chest height.
The American kettle bell swing takes a longer period of time to complete which can inhibit power output. If you have healthy shoulders, good range of motion, and don’t have heavy enough kettle bells at home or where you train.
The American kettle bell swing can be a good option. One argument for the American kettle bell swing is that you get a greater range of motion.
Russian swings allow me to use heavier weight and are easier for me to maintain my form, so I do those. As mentioned earlier kettle bell swings are low impact on the joints.
But one of the greatest benefits of the Russiankettlebell swing is that it can strengthen many muscles in the core and posterior chain. Some studies are even showing that regular kettle bell training can help reduce pain in the neck, shoulders, and back as well.
Photo: Jewell Chiropractic Kettle bell swings can also be a great way to burn some calories. Kettle bell swings are simple in theory but can be more difficult in practice.
Because high reps are often used in kettle bell swings the rounded spine can be troublesome. This is typically because the weight is too heavy and it may feel like the legs are needed to get enough power to get the kettle bell up.
Second, it could just be a matter of misunderstanding form, it might feel like you need to let the kettle bell get away to get it up. Continue practicing dead lift form, work on keeping your shoulders back and down, and use mini reps to help get comfortable using the hip hinge.
Below are a few commons questions I’ve received from coaching clients about kettle bell swings. When you hear 1 Food used to describe a kettle bell that means it weight 36.11 pounds.
Focus on form first as a way to decrease risk of injury as you start swinging it at higher volumes and more often. A few practice reps every couple of days is a great place to start.
Once form, strength, and conditioning is built up the reps can vary depending on the individual. Kettle bell swings uses calories but your best bet is to use your diet for fat loss.
Beginners will experience rapid results while those that have been training for a while will see much slower progression. Kettle bell swings do require you to use the abs and entire core.
Mancini, Rodrigo Luiz et al. Kettle bell Exercise as an Alternative to Improve Aerobic Power and Muscle Strength.” Journal of human kinetics vol. Chan M, McGinnis MJ, Koch S, et al. Cardiopulmonary Demand of 16-kg Kettle bell Snatches in Simulated Gregory Sport.
Otto WH 3rd, Co burn Jr, Brown LE, Spearing BA. Effects of weightlifting vs. kettle bell training on vertical jump, strength, and body composition.
The Russiankettlebell swing is a very effective functional movement which elicits muscle and strength gains, along with aerobic benefits as well. He hips are still a focal point for this movement to ensure the back stays out as much as possible.
It’s always important to use good form to optimize the movement and prevent injuries. Grip the kettle bell with both hands and swing it between your legs until it reaches slightly behind your body.
Then hinge your hips upward and swing the kettle bell up at the same time so that it snaps up. Your arms should end somewhere around parallel to the ground, and you should drive upward through your heels.
Maintain a straight back and bend your knees, then grip the kettle bell with both hands. Focus on hinging from your hips to snap the kettle bell upward during the Russian swing.
Do not perform the American variation if you don’t have complete mobility of the shoulders and/or full thoracic extension. This is naturally more beneficial for hypertrophy due to the potential for more frequent progressive overload.
Good form is essential and functional movements are best done through a larger range of motion. The American KB swing is not ideal for those with limited shoulder and thoracic mobility American KB swings require a close grip in an overhead position, which increases stress and mobility, which can then lead to injury with improper technique.
A: Kettle bell swings work several muscles which is why it’s such an effective and preferred movement. Your posterior chain (Backside of the body) is a large target area for this exercise, plus your core and other supporting muscles.
You’ll simply grip the dumbbell in a vertical position and perform the swing as you would with a kettle bell. The dumbbell is raised up in front of the chest so naturally it’s engaged since the shoulder fibers are attached to the pectoralis muscles.
The kettle bell swing requires a lot of posterior-chain involvement but the legs must assist to hinge the hips upward. Strength gains are achieved through a consistent increase in weight or repetitions.
The more advanced you are, the heavier you can train safely while steadily increasing the poundage and/or reps. Since the hips are doing a lot of the movement, the assisting muscles are highly involved, while the kettle bell swing is also a great strength-building exercise.
The hips should be prime movers for the bending and thrusting the kettle bell upward. It takes 3,500 calories either way to lose or gain a pound which is something to be mindful of, even when planning your diet for weight loss.
One study concluded that kettle bell training is a viable option for weight loss. 13 subjects performed 10 minutes of kettle bell swings above 85% of their maximum heart rate with short rest periods in between, and the average calories burned was 375 kilocalories.
Now, although kettle bell training does burn a decent number of calories, it’s not a substitute for doing pure cardio. The volunteers experienced significant improvements in aerobic capacity, core strength, and dynamic balance.
The core is the center of every physical movement but strong abs and obliques protect the lower back during weight training. These core muscles allow you to maintain your balance, and they keep your torso upright which is crucial.
And the previously-mentioned study was quite surprising for the core strengthening benefits of kettle bell training. But, this is a sample routine you can do when you’ve mastered the technique for the Russiankettlebell swing.
Plus, it’ll improve unilateral (Affecting one side) strength and function. After your set, place your right foot in front and repeat using your left arm for the swing.
Both the Russian and American kettle bell swing are viable options for a functional and effective, full-body movement. It’s simpler with a smaller range of motion which is ideal for those with limited shoulder and thoracic mobility.
But, in the last decade or so, they’ve seen a resurgence in popularity, not least because they are a part of so many CrossFit workouts. Of all the exercises you can do with a kettle bell, the swing is arguably the most popular and may even be the most valuable.
Many fitness enthusiasts believe that squats and dead lifts are the kings of exercise. But Tim Ferris says “the two armed kettle bell swing is the king and is all you need for dramatic body recomposition results”.
This post will reveal the main kettle bell swing benefits and how to do them correctly. It takes time to master the kettle bell swing, but once you’ve got it nailed, this exercise has a wide range of benefits.
These muscles are crucial for better posture, as well as improved sports performance. Your heart rate will also soar when you swing a kettle bell, which makes kettle bell swings one of the best strength training exercises for fat loss and weight loss.
Tim Ferris's writes glowingly about the fantastic benefits of the kettle bell swing for rapid fat loss and body recomposition in his New York Times Best Seller The Four Hour Body.” Image Credit Tracy & Mark Ranking Many fitness enthusiasts believe that squats and dead lifts are the kings of exercise.
But Tim Ferris says, “the two armed kettle bell swing is the king and is all you need for dramatic body recomposition results.” Increased cardiovascular fitness Kettle bell swing training is excellent for your heart and lungs, as well as your muscles.
Because they are a full-body movement, kettle bell swings will drive your heart and breathing rate sky-high, which makes them a beneficial and challenging cardiovascular exercise. Better posture Kettle bell swings are one of the best exercises for undoing the effects of prolonged sitting.
Swings work your posterior chain, which are the muscles responsible for holding you upright against the pull of gravity. In many instances, this will also eliminate the back pain often caused by poor posture.
But, if you master a proper kettle bell swing, you can enjoy all the benefits this exercise has to offer while avoiding all the risks. Standing with your feet about shoulder-width apart, pull your shoulders down and back, and brace your abs.
Focus on your hip drive to pop the kettle bell upwards, not your arms. Use your lats and abs to stop the weight swinging upward and then let the kettle bell fall back down.
However, it’s all too easy to inadvertently shorten your rep range by not swinging the weight high enough, i.e., below shoulder-height. Swinging the weight up until the arms are vertical ensures that each rep is the same, making them easier to judge and quantify.
However, raising the weight so high will increase stress on the lower back, which could lead to injury. The increased range of movement also means you won’t be able to lift as much weight.
But, unless you are training for CrossFit competitions, the Russian swing is potentially the safer one, which may mean it’s the best choice for most exercisers. As recommended by the American Council on Exercise, ACE for short, this kettle bell workout is best done three times a week on non-consecutive days, e.g., Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
No other kettle bell exercise offers so many benefits and is so easy to learn. Whether you want to burn fat, get fit, or boost your dead lift performance, kettle bell swings will help.
Remember, to get the most from this exercise; you need to do them correctly and give yourself time to recover between workouts. Dead lifts are one of the best exercises on the planet to change your body dramatically, no matter what your age.
Related Posts:Footnotes:Please take a moment and share 5 Epic Kettle bell Swing Benefits for Total Body Conditioning: 5 Epic Kettle bell Swing Benefits For Total Body Conditioning It’s an explosive and natural expression of hip extension, a key portion of your vertical leap and your sprinter’s stride, too.
You stand grasping a kettle bell with both hands, core tight, toes pointed ever-so-slightly outward, knees slightly bent. From there, you push your butt back slightly and hinge at the waist, letting momentum take the kettle bell behind your thighs.
Momentum carries the kettle bell upwards and in front of you, and your arms drive forward, typically until they’re parallel to the ground, in the process. In practice, the American swing frequently takes the emphasis off your mammies and glutes, and average gym-goers over-involve muscles that aren't meant for the job, such as the shoulders and lower back.
In general, you always want to choose exercises that minimize risk and maximize the benefits that’ll push you to your goals. You should evaluate all exercises this way (and not be afraid to question your group fitness trainer either -- it’s their job to answer you).
American swing fans have two key arguments that fail to account for the way the general population actually moves. It’s a demonstration of true shoulder flexion at the top of each rep, that your mid- and upper-back muscles will fire.
In this way, it’s a total body exercise, and superior and more “complete” than the Russiankettlebell swing. So that means, by default, they’re destined to perform the American swing incorrectly (and I've seen “fit” folks wreck this move, too).
Targeting muscles is important, even if “all-workouts-should-be-total-body” nation doesn't understand that, because it's a key method of correcting weaknesses in both your mechanics and your physique. Quick test: Lie with your belly on the ground, arms and legs long in front of you.
The basic swing lets you move a fairly heavy weight, since it relies on two of your body’s most powerful muscle groups, the legs and glutes, to generate the majority of the force. If those muscle groups can’t power the bell to the dumb American standard, the shoulders and lower back do the brunt of the extra work -- except they’re not meant to move the same load as the glutes and mammies.
So the shoulder muscles and smaller upper-body stabilizers take over that large load. The American swing crowd might contend that this isn’t all that different from a snatch anyway, hamstrings and glutes firing.
Thing is, both the barbell and single-arm snatch versions let you drive weights overhead while rotating and spreading your shoulders more freely to create joint space for your rotator cuff tendons. That can’t happen when both hands are grasping a kettle bell handle with a close grip.
Really think and focus on the American kettle bell swing, be super-controlled and mindful of your whole body, and you have your best shot. They rely on high rep loads, and, eventually, fatigue piles on.
Station-to-station randomness makes things worse: if the American swing’s your first move, your mind and your shoulder blades aren’t fatigued. You could go “lighter” on the weight with the American swing, both in a class setting and in your own workouts, focusing on form.
Except then, your hamstrings and glutes, the targets of the classic swing, simply don’t get to move as much weight. Unless you compete in CrossFit (where the American swing sometimes shows up in competition), the wildest part about the stupidity of the American kettle bell swing is that there’s a much simpler way to achieve the super-aggressive hip extension and explosive glute contraction that it is supposed to bring.
There’s a smarter, less injury-inducing way to push your glutes and hamstrings to “pop” more than they do on your average Russian swing. Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., is the fitness director of Men's Health and a certified trainer with more than 10 years of training experience.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. 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 goodkettlebell 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”.
In today’s world we spend the majority of our days doing things in front of us with terrible posture. Cubicles) for hours at a time not moving and making the front of our body even tighter.
If You’re Not Doing The Kettle bell Swing, You’re Destined To Stay Fat, Tight & Weak For The Rest Of Your Life! This overuse of the muscles on the front side of our bodies is called “anterior dominance” and it is plaguing our society.
FrequencyExercise TypeIntensityRepetitionsRest up to 7x per week strength training high intensity varies by workout varies by workout Once labelled “hard core”, kettle bells are now popping up in every gym, garage and backyard because of their portability and reputation for fast results. Go into any gym and you’ll see inexperienced exercisers turning a swing into a front squat and shoulder raise exercise further tightening our hips, quads, chest and shoulders and just adding to the anterior dominance issue that I told you about above.
Always making sure your shoulders stay above the level of your hips, “hike pass” the kettle bell through your knees by contracting your lats. When you push your hips back keeping your butt high and your shins vertical, you are hinging.
This is good because most people today are hip flexor and quad dominant (your anterior muscles), so learning how to load and use your posterior chain creates a natural balance between front and back that will help in preventing knee and hip issues. Imagine that you are growing roots through your feet and grab the ground with your entire foot.
Getting proper instruction from an expert so that you can MASTER THE KETTLEBELL SWING is the best thing that you can do for your training regardless of your goal. If you want to build strength, kettle bell swings will forge a grip of steel and will add pounds to your dead lift & squat.
If you want to boost your athleticism, kettle bell swings will make you more powerful and add height to your jump and shave seconds off your sprints. If you want to pack on muscle, swinging a heavy kettle bell will build an intimidating upper back & set of shoulders.