Kettlebells are iron or steel balls with flattened butts on one end and a curved handle on the other. Some kettlebells may also be covered in a neoprene or some other type coating.
Kettlebells are used both for general athletic training, competitive sport training and a normal workout routine. Kettlebells are great for both commercial gyms and home gyms, as they are very durable and versatile. They facilitate whole body dynamic movement for strength, endurance, and power training.
Because of their design, kettlebells enable many familiar movements from pushes like the shoulder press, to more functional exercises like a farmer carry. While it is true that these exercises can be performed with other types of free weight, the kettlebell is by far the most comfortable to use for these certain exercises due to its shape and handle.
The kettlebell swing is by far the most popular exercise performed with a kettlebell. This movement starts with a posture and hip drive similar to the deadlift or Olympic clean, but the cannonball-with-handle kettlebell design means that this weight can be swung up from between the legs, driven by the hip thrust forward to about chest height, and then accelerated down again by the shoulders pulling the weight down, back through the legs, then driven back up again with the hips, back and forth for reps.
This movement was give the name "kettlebell swing" because it's really only possible to perform with a kettlebell.
A kettlebell swing works the grip and forearms. It targets your glutes, legs, lower back and more, as this is a full body motion. Kettlebell swings can also be performed with two hands on one bell, one hand/one bell, or one bell in each hand for two bells at a time (doubles).
Other dynamic kettlebell movements like the snatch and the clean and jerk also develop full body strength, power and endurance. The Kettlebell Clean and Press is a powerful exercise that combines upper and lower body strength and power. This is an excellent kettlebell strength exercises available that can result in phenomenal results when done correctly.
A Turkish get up is another great exercise with a kettlebell, which challenges you to move down to the ground and get up, all while holding the kettlebell in one hand. This exercises is extremely functional, as it strengthens your body to perform one of our most basic movements that we do every day.
The primary advantage of kettlebell training is its efficiency. While it’s helpful to have a few kettlebells of different weights, one bell alone can give you a great workout with many different exercises.
They don't take up a lot of space and have a flat bottom, so they are easy to store on the ground or any other flat surface
By varying weights and exercises you can train strength-endurance, speed, or power.
You can do a variety of movements like presses, pulls, squatting-type movements, and dynamic work.
Because many popularized kettlebell workouts are dynamic, full body exercises you can easily workout your entire body with one piece of fitness equipment
When combined with proper nutrition, training with kettlebells seems to offer the benefits of intense interval training on bikes but with the strength development of weights.
Kettlebells are great for strength and conditioning and can be used for a variety of sport specific training.
Many functional exercises can be performed with a kettlebell, which can help improve overall mobility and flexibility.
No matter what your goals are in your fitness routine kettlebells are a great addition to use for strength and conditioning
Many customers ask what is the right weight for them to start with and unfortunately there is no easy answer to this. The best way to choose will always be to come in and test the kettlebells with different weights and exercises, but more often than not you'll want more than one weight. As you continue to workout you will get stronger and need higher weights. If space and budget allow, I always recommend having four kettlebells to start. For example, you could get 20, 25, 30 and 35lb kettlebells which will provide you with a good range of weights to start with. Another consideration is if you have some dumbbells or plates at home already, test what this weight is like. You may not be able to do the exact exercise, but it will give you a good idea of what weight you can handle.
Quality of different kettlebells will vary. Similar to most free weight, it's unlikely that something like this will break completely, but you may experience chips in the material and this sort of thing. The finish on the kettlebell will be one of the main differences in quality. Some kettlebells will have a powder finish, which helps with grip. Some kettlebells will have a cover on the ball part, like neoprene or vinyl which makes them very nice to carry and quiet on the ground.
The style of handle and the grip on the kettlebell is one of the biggest differences between types of kettlebells and the varying quality in kettlebells. We discussed the finish a bit already and the type of finish will make a difference in how good the grip is on the handle. In addition, while most kettlebell handles are similar in size, they will vary a bit. The handle on some kettlebells stay straight longer allowing for two hands to comfortably hold, whereas other handles may curve sooner, making the area to hold smaller.
Competition kettlebells are a special type of kettlebell that are the exact same physical size no matter what weight the kettlebell is. This is particularly important for those training for competitions, so it's the same height off the ground no matter what weight you're using. This also ensures the handle is the same size. It's a similar concept to bumper plates where the diameter of the plate will be the same no matter the weight.
Kettlebells are a fabulous and often overlooked tool for strength and conditioning. The mileage one can get from a single kettlebell is hard to match with any other training tool.
As the kettlebell’s signature movements are dynamic, they blend the benefits of compound strength lifts with power and endurance work.
Kettlebell work also helps develop forearm, hand and finger strength because of numerous options for grip, and various loads dynamically challenging the grip repeatedly and at high speeds.
A single kettlebell workout can include a great variety of pushes, pulls and ballistic movements. Because of the options of varying load and sets, kettlebells offer fat burning alternatives to bikes or treadmills.
Kettlebells engage the whole body with a single tool that is small, portable, and affordable for home use.
Kettlebell training can help strengthen the spinal musculature, keeping your back happy; there is no significant lumbar flexion in kettlebell work.
If you would like to purchase a kettlebell, or any other type of free weights, visit fitnessexperience.ca to see what we have available and as always, do not hesitate to contact our knowledgeable staff.