You may have noticed at boot camp or the gym these cast iron balls with a handle sticking out of the top. You may have looked at this strange device and figured that it is only for the most advanced boot campers to use.
But you’d be wrong; the kettlebell is a great piece of equipment that can be used by anyone of any exercise level to improve power, muscle and balance.
The design of the kettlebell is very intentional, it’s made in a way that the balance isn’t centered; therefore the person using them constantly has to utilize their core and other muscles to stabilize. This means that more muscles are being engaged with each workout and your balance is being improved at the same time.
So, we’re going to show you some of our favorite kettlebell workouts you can try at home for yourself.
This is an exercise that, when done correctly, can be an extremely effective workout in both strength and interval training. Start in a low squat with the kettlebell held in both hands between your legs. Swing the kettlebell forward, and be sure to keep your arms straight in the process. Use the momentum to stand up straight. You should end up with the kettlebell at eye-height, arms in front of you and legs slightly bent. Swing the kettlebell back down between your legs and repeat. Be sure to keep your back straight and don’t swing too hard, you don’t want to end up harming your back in the process.
A squat is a great exercise, and when you add weights to it you’re just going to be adding more benefit to your workout routine. Start by standing straight, with your legs shoulder-width apart. Hold the kettlebell in front of your chest with your elbows bent using both hands. Lower yourself down into a low squat, making sure to keep your knees from going past your toes. You’re going to keep the kettlebell in the same position throughout the exercise. Stand back up and repeat.
We’re going to add a bit of a…twist to a classic crunch. Sit on the floor with your legs bent in front of you. Hold your kettlebell to your chest with your elbows bent and tucked towards your body. Lift your feet off of the ground so that you are engaging your core, balancing on your glutes (not your tailbone, that would hurt.) You’re going to twist your upper body from side to side, keeping your core tight to maintain balance and bringing the kettlebell to the outside of your legs as you move from side to side.
Add a little extra to another classic workout with the use of kettlebells. Place two kettlebells on the ground, handle up, about shoulder-width apart. Place one hand on each handle, and enter the push-up position, balancing yourself over the kettlebells. Keep your core tight and lower yourself, bending your elbows and keeping the rest of your body straight. Raise yourself back up and repeat.
KETTLEBELL OVERHEAD PRESS
This is another exercise that targets your arms and shoulders in a great way. Stand up straight, with your legs shoulder-width apart. Hold the kettlebell in your right hand, with the handle in your palm and the weight hanging off to rest against the back of your hand. Bend your elbow so your hand is shoulder-height with your elbow tucked towards your body. Now you’re going to extend the kettlebell straight up above your shoulder, and breathe out as you complete the motion. Lower the kettlebell back down to your shoulder and repeat.