Although there are tons of different kettlebell exercises,
they all fall into two main categories; grinds and ballistics.
Grinds are performed slowly and for strength much like traditional
weight lifting or free weights. Examples include chest presses,
bent over rows and squats.
The “ballistic” exercises use more of
the whole body and are done for high-repetition endurance which builds
anaerobic capacity and burns fat. Examples are the swing and snatch.
most basic kettlebell exercise is the swing. Begin by holding the
kettlebell with both hands, arms extended and hanging down. Sit
back, bend your knees slightly and swing the kettlebell back between
your legs. Snap the hips and propel the kettlebell forward to
about chest height, repeat. Exhale on the way back and inhale on
the way up. Keep your arms straight, do not lift with your arms
or shoulders. Your hips do all the lifting.
The swing is
the foundation exercise and is a great fat-burner in its own
right. Muscles worked by the swing include the glutes, hamstrings
and lower back.
The clean is next. ”Cleaning” a weight
involves getting it from the floor up to shoulder height. The clean
starts out like the swing, but then you control the bell and keep it
close to your body. Once it gets to chest height, thread your
hand through it and the handle is up, the bell resting on the outside
of your forearm, elbow in tight resting on, or near, your hip.
clean is a pull which works your back, lats and traps. Cleans can
either be slow, strength movements or used for high repetitions for
more of a cardio effect.
When planning my workouts, I usually
like to combine a strength circuit featuring 3-4 grinding movements
with a cardio circuit to finish it off with ballistic exercises.
This provides a very time-efficient fat burning workout that usually
only lasts about 15-30 minutes. If you don’t own a kettlebell
that’s OK, you can do the kettlebell exercises with dumb bells to
start...or go here and buy kettlebells today!