5 Kettlebell Exercises To Amp Up Your Workout

Looking to get the maximum bang for your buck from your workout? Make kettlebells your go-to gym equipment!
Kettlebell

While you wait for your turn to use the dumbbells at a crowded gym, an extremely versatile piece of equipment lies unused in the corner. We’re talking about kettlebells— which pack the same punch as dumbbells, but with a fraction of the popularity. We’re here to right that wrong, because kettlebells are in fact supremely effective training tools that provide total-body strength and conditioning. If used properly, they burn fat, build muscle, and enhance overall fitness (in no particular order).

We talked to Ajay Verma, a Gurgaon-based certified personal trainer with Fitness First India, and compiled this list of five kettlebell exercises that are sure to liven up your workout: 

1. Kettlebell Swing

This lets you combine strength training and cardio into one incredibly powerful and efficient movement.
 

How To Do It:

•    Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent, toes pointing out.
•    Grab a kettlebell in a two-handed, overhand grip and hold it between your legs while looking straight ahead and maintaining an arch in your lower back
•    Using your lower back and hips, swing forward and bring the weight up until your arms are parallel to the floor.
•    Swing the weight back down and begin the next rep immediately.
•    Perform three sets of 10 reps each.

swing_danielle_ward.jpg
Credits: pinterest.com/ Danielle Ward

 

2. Kettlebell Clean

Increase your grip strength and become stronger in your overhead movements with this movement.
 

How To Do It:
 

•    Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent, toes pointing out.
•    Grip the kettlebell handle loosely with one hand, in an underhand grip with your thumb pointing towards you.
•    Drive through your hips and pull the bell up to the midline of your body, swivelling the handle around your fingers into the locked position to make sure the bell doesn’t flip.
•    At the top of the movement, your shoulder should be pressed down, and triceps pressed against your ribcage, with the kettlebell resting between your forearm and biceps.
•    Swivel or roll the kettlebell back down to the starting position, keeping your abs and glutes engaged throughout the exercise.
•    Perform three sets of 10 reps per hand.

Clean_daniel_curtis.jpg
Credits: pinterest.com/ Daniel Curtis

 

3. Turkish Get Up 

It’s a slow, deliberate movement that tests your strength and mobility, and also builds stronger shoulders.

How To Do It:

•    Lying on your back, grab the kettlebell with your left hand, and lift and lock your left arm.
•    Bend your left knee, keeping the right leg stretched straight out on the ground.
•    Push off with your left foot, roll on to your right hip and come up on the right elbow. Push up on to your right hand, and bring your back off the ground.
•    Keeping your left arm locked, move into a kneeling position with your right leg. 
•    From this kneeling position, tighten your core, and lunge forward to a standing position. 
•    Reverse the process to come back down to the starting position.
•    Aim for three sets, comprising three quality reps on each side.

turkish_get_up_mark_finlay.jpg
Credits: pinterest.com/ Mark Finlay

 

4. Kettlebell Snatch

It’s been called the ultimate display of full-body power¬—physically demanding, but comes with outstanding total-body strength and conditioning benefits.

How To Do It:

•    Place a kettlebell between your feet when they’re shoulder-width apart. With one hand, grab the handle, then bend your knees and push your butt back.
•    Looking straight ahead, lift the kettlebell up, swing it back between your legs and immediately reverse the movement.
•    Driving through your hips, bring the kettlebell up. Rotate your hand and shoulder to punch straight up, ending with your palm facing forward. Lock the weight overhead.
•    Bring the kettlebell back down to the starting position, and repeat for three sets, getting in 10 reps for each arm.

snatch_toby_clay.jpg
Credits: pinterest.com/ Toby Clay

 

5. Kettlebell Windmills

This movement will give you stronger shoulders, and will definitely make your abs burn!

How To Do It:

•    Clean the kettlebell (as described earlier) and hold it upright, keeping your arm locked out and palm facing outwards.
•    Push your butt out in the direction of the locked out kettlebell, and turn your feet at a 45 degree angle to the arm with the locked out dumbbell.
•    Bending at the hip to one side, sticking your butt out, slowly lean until you can touch the floor with your free hand. Keep your eyes on the kettlebell at all times.
•    Pause for a second after reaching the ground and reverse the motion to get back to the starting position.
•    Complete three sets of five reps per side.

windmill_luke_holly.jpg
Credits: pinterest.com/Luke Holly

 

It might take some getting used to, but nail these five exercises, and you’re well on your way to a much better body!
 

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