Believe it or not, but kettlebells were first used by the Russians in the 18th century to weigh their crops. By using them daily, these farmers naturally became stronger and as a result, the Soviet Union began to incorporate them in their physical training and conditioning programs.
Today Kettlebells are used worldwide to develop both strength and agility. If you want a stronger, more powerful, leaner and agile body, then try these 7 killer kettlebell strength-training exercises. They are incredibly useful as they work out the entire body and core. If you don’t have a kettlebell, I highly suggest getting one by CAP Barbell and incorporating it into your workout routine.. today!
It is one of the most effective strength training activities for your body as a whole and is particularly great for your lower back, legs, and shoulders. By using a kettlebell often, you’ll also get the added benefit of a substantial increase in your grip strength.
Exercise 1 – The Swing
The first and most powerful kettlebell exercise is called the swing. This is where you take the kettlebell below your groin and you swing the kettlebell (forward and up) to your shoulders and upper abdomen. Make sure to keep your feet a foot or two width apart and are using the hips to thrust the kettlebell forward and that your arms become parallel to the ground as you swing the kettlebell upwards. Make sure that you aren’t bending your knees too much and are instead using your hips to thrust the kettlebell upwards.
Exercise 2 – The Squat
Squatting with a kettlebell isn’t nearly as effective as squatting with a dumbbell for example, and one might even wonder how effective squatting with a 60 pound kettlebell can actually be. But unlike the dumbbell, using a kettlebell in a squat does offer more flexibility, movement, and variations. It’s a great alternative if you want to get some sets in from home and have no time to hit the gym. Take the barbell up to your chest with both hands and keep your legs a couple feet in width apart. The kettlebell squat can offer a nice little addition to your workout routine and is actually one of the easier exercises.
Exercise 3 – Lunge Press
The famous kettlebell lunge press is great for strengthening the shoulders, back, arms, and legs. To do the lunge press, hold the kettlebell in one hand close to your chest. Take one leg and lunge forward as you raise the kettlebell over your head. Return to your standing position as you return the kettlebell to your chest. Try doing 10 repetitions with each leg and then switch arms.
Exercise 4 – Russian Twist
One of the best alternative methods to working out your abs and obliques is with the Russian twist. While sitting on the ground, bring the kettlebell up to your chest and lean back about 45 degrees. Keep your feet bent on the floor about hip distance apart, tighten your torso, and begin to twist your body from left to right.
Exercise 5 – Kettlebell Slingshot
Ready for some swinging? To do the Kettlebell Slingshot, begin by extending your arms in-front of your chest while holding the kettlebell and keeping your feet shoulder-width apart. With one hand, swing the kettlebell around your body and behind your back. With your other hand take the kettlebell and swing the kettlebell to the front of your body. Try doing this for 10 more reps and then switch directions. The Kettlebell slingshot is great for strengthening the arms, back, abs, and obliques.
Exercise 6 – Kettlebell Military Press (two-arms)
As you can tell by the name, the military press strengthens the shoulders, arms, and back. It is an absolute killer workout for your shoulders. Grab both kettlebells and bring them up to the rack position up to your shoulders and neck. Lift the kettlebells upward, making sure that the weights are lifted behind your head with both palms facing forward. Bring the kettlebells back down and rinse and repeat.
Exercise 7 – The Turkish Get-Up
This is a must-try exercise for anyone looking to increase their overall body strength. There’s quite a lot of movement involved, which is why it makes the Get-Up so effective. Start with your body lying down on the floor, with one knee bent, and the kettlebell held extended in one arm in the air. Bring your upper body forward off the ground while holding the kettlebell extended above your head. Slowly bring yourself up by bringing one knee forward and gradually bringing yourself up to a standing position, while keeping the kettlebell up over your head the entire time.
Who knew there were so many different workouts and exercise that could be done with a simple kettlebell. This is such an effective way of exercising you’re going to wonder why you never thought of using one in the first place, and if you have, you already know what I mean.
Unlike using dumbbells, the kettlebell is extremely effective at working your entire core while also improving and conditioning your cardiovascular system. Why not kill 2 birds with 1 stone? I have no doubt that the kettlebell will make you feel stronger, more powerful, and agile. If you’re looking for more versatility in your workout routine, then definitely give the kettlebell a go!