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Which Muscles Kettlebell Swing

author
Danielle Fletcher
• Saturday, 10 October, 2020
• 9 min read

Muscles Worked With Kettle bell Swings kettlebellswing is primarily used for its cardio effect which is great for weight loss, hence, it’s such a popular kettle bell exercise. The kettlebellswing is a full-body exercise that uses muscles for grip, posture, stabilization, to keep the spine erect, and the actual movement (prime movers).

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(Source: www.darkironfitness.com)

Contents

Truth be told, there are plenty more muscles used during the kettlebellswing but I’ve tried to stick to the most common and known ones, I also categorized them a bit differently than normal. If your grip has no endurance then you won’t be completing high reps unbroken.

Throughout the swing, your erector spinal muscles need to work to keep your spine erect, and there is actually a lot more going on inside as well to protect the spine and brace the abs. These are the muscles that create the movement which is the hip and knee extension only when we’re talking about the conventional kettlebellswing.

These are the muscles responsible for getting the kettle bell overhead with the American kettlebellswing. Not a great quality video at all, but the content is, I explain how to prevent the common back aches from the kettlebellswing, whether using the conventional/Russian or American swing.

The following is a drill I use for teaching the deep hip hinge insert which is what happens during the back swing and is also used to prevent bobbing of the kettle bell. If you want to be efficient with the American swing, stay safe, and be able to perform high reps then there is no doubt in my mind that you should lay the foundation with the conventional kettlebellswing and then continue that knowledge through the kettle bell snatch.

Taco Fleur Russian Gregory Sport Institute Kettle bell Coach, Caveman training Certified, IFF Certified Kettle bell Teacher, Kettle bell Sport Rank 2, HardstyleFit Kettle bell Level 1 Instructor., CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, CrossFit Judges Certificate, CrossFit Lesson Planning Certificate, Kettle bells Level 2 Trainer, Kettle bell Science and Application, MMA Fitness Level 2, MMA Conditioning Level 1, BJJ Purple Belt and more. Kettle bell swings were introduced to the US by Russian fitness expert Pavel Tsatsouline at the turn of the 21st Century.

kettlebell swing workout muscle does exercises benefits target body power major strength iron quick develop order most
(Source: www.darkironfitness.com)

Since their introduction, Russian kettle bells have become a familiar sight in many gyms and a popular choice for home workouts. They also come in a wide range of weights, which means that you can use them at any stage of your fitness journey and can benefit whether you’re an experienced or novice user.

If you’re looking for a single piece of fitness equipment that promotes a full body workout, then kettle bells are a great choice, and the kettlebellswing is the most effective exercise. But the question on many people’s lips is, “what muscles do kettle bell swings work?”, and that’s what I want to answer in this post.

The two-handed swing uses the hamstrings, glutes, quads, hips, core, back, trapezium, shoulders, and forearms. The intensity means that you will feel the burn after a decent set, and with a good 30-minute workout you will be sweating profusely, your heart will be pumping faster, and oxygenated blood will be coursing through your veins.

As long as you maintain good form, you don’t have to use a heavy bell, especially for cardio training. He also advises having two additional, heavier, bells for progression and for use in some other types of kettle bell exercise.

As the kettle bell descends from the swing, gravity ensures that the bell will feel a lot heavier, especially as you reach the end of your set. As with any exercise, but perhaps more so with a full-body kettle swing workout, good form is vital to ensure the best results.

kettlebell muscles swings worked swing american workout crossfit kettlebells exercises during conventional cavemantraining workouts
(Source: www.cavemantraining.com)

When performing the swing, all your weight should be placed on the heel and middle of the foot and should never transfer to the toes. You should also keep your neck and head in alignment with your back so ensure that you are always looking ahead at the horizon while performing this movement.

The height you raise the kettle bell will be determined by the amount of power you can muster from your hip thrust. The number of reps and sets you need to perform depends on your fitness level, what you’re trying to achieve, and the weight you’re using.

Kettle bell swings are a full body workout, and whether you are training increasing strength or stamina, or even to lose weight, research suggests that shorter sessions are more effective. They utilize virtually every muscle in the body, and they are effective for weight loss as well as explosive strength training.

No wonder the kettlebellswing is such a popular exercise, so you might be surprised to learn it's being performed incorrectly by most people. And just like any other workout where you use heavy weights, doing kettle bell swings wrong can result in injury, not gains.

The 10,000 swings kettle bell workout takes four weeks and it is said to make you abs and your glutes pop plus massively improve grip strength. The kettlebellswing is a hip-hinge exercise: the hip is fixed in the three-dimensional space as you fling the iron orb up and down.

kettlebell muscles swing worked swings handed arm single exercise
(Source: juanlugofitness.com)

Bending the knee and/or the back too much might not work the right muscles or worse, cause discomfort or injury. To maximize muscle under tension, we would recommend not resting when the movement reaches its apex point: don't let the kettle bell fall down, pull it down hard to work those muscles all the way through the workout.

The legs are also straight but the knees are not locked, let them bent just a bit so when the kettle bell comes down, the hamstrings are not stretched too much. © Provided by T3 The ATX Neoprene-covered kettle bells are great for home gym environments.

The softer neoprene cover makes these 'bells less likely to chip hard floor and also more quiet to work out with. The alternating kettlebellswing is a brilliant unilateral move that can help to work on both sides of the body with equal intensity.

The kettlebellswing and high pull is a more advanced move and required some experience and control over the kettle bell. By adding the pull movement at the top, you will work the back of the shoulders even more.

People who are against this method say it's not that much more beneficial than the standard version and also puts your head at greater risk. To avoid any injuries and to help recovery, stretch after every strength training session.

kettlebell swings muscles swing worked muscle groups workout targeted workouts fitness kettlebells exercises training biceps lower tips
(Source: www.pinterest.com)

Foam rollers can be found in most gyms and you can buy them on Amazon too, a quick and inexpensive way to massage the tired muscles. If you are doing strength training, try taking in around 2 grams of protein for each kilogram of body weight per day.

No wonder the kettlebellswing is such a popular exercise, so you might be surprised to learn it's being performed incorrectly by most people. And just like any other workout where you use heavy weights, doing kettle bell swings wrong can result in injury, not gains.

Performed correctly, kettle bell swings can do wonders to your body, so much so that there is a whole workout based around this one exercise. The 10,000 swings kettle bell workout takes four weeks and it is said to make you abs and your glutes pop plus massively improve grip strength.

The kettlebellswing is a hip-hinge exercise: the hip is fixed in the three-dimensional space as you fling the iron orb up and down. Bending the knee and/or the back too much might not work the right muscles or worse, cause discomfort or injury.

To maximize muscle under tension, we would recommend not resting when the movement reaches its apex point: don't let the kettle bell fall down, pull it down hard to work those muscles all the way through the workout. The legs are also straight but the knees are not locked, let them bent just a bit so when the kettle bell comes down, the hamstrings are not stretched too much.

kettlebell swing benefits swings exercise muscles kettle squat kettlebells workout exercises muscle bell does groups before training they body technique
(Source: www.darkironfitness.com)

The softer neoprene cover makes these 'bells less likely to chip hard floor and also more quiet to work out with. The alternating kettlebellswing is a brilliant unilateral move that can help to work on both sides of the body with equal intensity.

The kettlebellswing and high pull is a more advanced move and required some experience and control over the kettle bell. By adding the pull movement at the top, you will work the back of the shoulders even more.

People who are against this method say it's not that much more beneficial than the standard version and also puts your head at greater risk. To avoid any injuries and to help recovery, stretch after every strength training session.

Foam rollers can be found in most gyms and you can buy them on Amazon too, a quick and inexpensive way to massage the tired muscles. If you are doing strength training, try taking in around 2 grams of protein for each kilogram of body weight per day.

In general, strength training exercises should be performed without relying on momentum to lift and lower the weight. Swinging a kettle bell, when done with proper form, can cause your heart rate to soar while simultaneously targeting the major muscle groups of your lower body and core.

kettlebell muscles swing fitness technique exercises education posterior chain nordic
(Source: twitter.com)

The kettlebellswing engages many muscle groups simultaneously; if your sequencing is off, or if you're moving in a manner that lifts or “flings” the weight using your upper body, rather than powering the exercise with your lower body, you're setting yourself up for possible muscle strains or other problems. Your arms keep the swinging motion under control, but they're not actively participating in the lifting or lowering of the weight.

Given that most people spend their time at the gym working the “show me” muscles of the anterior chain of the body, including the chest, abdominal, and quadriceps, using exercises that hit the back of the body can help correct potential muscle imbalances. Kettle bell swings are also a low-impact exercise that can significantly raise your heart rate in a manner similar to running or sprinting on an indoor cycle.

Your torso should remain straight, your core, upper back, and shoulders all engaged, throughout this upward swing. Continue the forward-and-backward kettle bell swings for time or repetitions, remembering to keep your torso straight and to power the movement with your hips and glutes.

The kettlebellswing is a complex exercise that engages multiple muscle groups in a very specific sequence. This is why it's a good idea to work with a trainer or a coach the first few times you implement it to ensure you aren't making common mistakes.

Try to actively prevent your shoulders from lifting the weight upward, relying instead on the momentum of the hip extension. The traditional swing (as described here), which ends with the kettle bell roughly parallel to the floor, is the Russian kettlebellswing.

kettlebell swing form muscles handed swings worked benefits points teaching training
(Source: www.pinterest.com)

While it's perfectly possible to perform the American kettlebellswing safely, it requires a lighter load and greater mobility and stability of the shoulder joints. Because most people struggle to perform the Russian kettlebellswing correctly at first, adding the control necessary to take the kettle bell safely overhead is simply unnecessary.

You can enjoy the full benefits of the kettlebellswing with fewer risks of shoulder injury by simply stopping the forward momentum when the kettle bell is parallel to the ground. To help prevent low back pain or strain with the kettlebellswing, it's absolutely imperative that you keep your spine neutral and straight throughout the exercise, maintaining what amounts to perfect posture.

Ultimately, this also reduces the power you can generate with your glutes and hamstrings, really just sending the whole exercise into a tailspin. If you notice a rounding of your upper back or shoulders, reset and reengage your shoulders, upper back, and core, and focus on keeping your torso completely straight as you hinge backward from the hips.

That means it requires you to press your hips back without bending your knees much as your torso tips forward toward the floor. This reduces the power output of the glutes and hamstrings and places more focus on the quadriceps.

These issues, together, prevent the desired momentum that can be generated by the posterior chain of the body, making it more likely you'll have to use your shoulders and arms to help lift the weight to perform the swing. If, however, you simply need to get used to performing a hip-hinge correctly, grab a broomstick to help you master the movement.

kettlebell swing muscles worked form during should mistakes pulled manner isometric act lower meaning shoulder
(Source: kettlebellsworkouts.com)

Perform this motion in front of a mirror and take note of the way your body feels as you hinge. This helps develop unilateral shoulder stability and anti-rotational core strength, both of which can improve coordination and reduce the likelihood of injury due to muscle imbalances.

Performing the kettlebellswing incorrectly can place unnecessary strain on these joints, leading to greater pain or injury. Your best bet for performing the exercise correctly and preventing injuries is to work with a trainer or coach to ensure you're using proper form.

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Sources
1 www.parents.com - https://www.parents.com/pregnancy/my-body/fitness/kettlebell-workouts-for-women-during-pregnancy/
2 livehealthy.chron.com - https://livehealthy.chron.com/can-kettlebell-swings-pregnant-7559.html
3 www.chroniclesofstrength.com - https://www.chroniclesofstrength.com/pregnant-yes-can-use-kettlebells/
4 www.shape.com - https://www.shape.com/fitness/videos/kettlebell-exercises-pregnant-women-are-safe-baby
5 www.strongfirst.com - https://www.strongfirst.com/community/threads/kettlebells-and-pregnancy.10331/