10 Kettlebell Exercises For Men And Women

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Kettlebells are not only one of the most adaptable pieces of equipment, but they are also one of the most biomechanically safe ways to add weight to any workout. Kettlebells are a must-have when assisting a customer in building their home gym or designing their training programme.

Most people associate kettlebell exercises with high-intensity activities akin to CrossFit training. While those are excellent methods of kettlebell training, they are also excellent tools for improving mobility and adding variation to your programme.

The Benefits of Kettlebell Training

For several workouts, the form of a kettlebell allows for considerably more natural and safe joint placements. The best example of this is when performing a shoulder press.

When we press overhead with dumbbells, the size and shape of the dumbbell generate so much space between the centre of resistance and the shoulder that it's simple to lose form and damage your shoulder.

With a Kettlebell, you may keep the resistance near the major joint involved in the exercise, giving you far more control over the movement's direction.
Kettlebells are an invaluable tool for people trying to burn calories, lose weight, or become more athletic.[1]

Many people have a learning curve from their first days in the gym creating a foundation and graduating to advanced high intensity exercise. That learning curve is the reason why so many people endure pain, discomfort, or even injury when progressing from beginner to advanced routines.

Let's take a look at deadlifts. Doing a great deadlift with dumbbells does not make it safe to conduct straight barbell cleans, plyometrics, or HIIT training. This is because a dumbbell deadlift only teaches you to do a slow and controlled hip hinge. It does not teach you how to generate power from that movement, how to decelerate effectively, how to absorb impact shock, or how to maintain form despite exhaustion. All of this is required in order to safely introduce more advanced training.

However, kettlebell training allows you to develop those talents with less risk. For example, if a client is advancing into more advanced training, I will provide kettlebell swing variations before introducing advanced barbell training once they have mastered deadlifts.

How Heavy Should Kettlebell Be for Beginners?

Despite the fact that kettlebells are a unique and adaptable tool, they nonetheless adhere to all of the same guidelines for properly introducing weight into an exercise.

Begin with light resistance until you've mastered the movement, then gradually increase it. Of course, how lightly you begin any other workout depends on the action. Start with a much smaller weight for a bicep curl than you would for a squat, and apply the same logic.

The only exception to increasing the weight of kettlebells occurs when we introduce ballistic training workouts. Because these exercises rely on your generated momentum, using too little weight can actually make them more difficult to control. Starting too light is not dangerous, so don't be afraid to experiment with a few different weights the first time.

If you're doing ballistic or explosive exercises like swings, cleans, and snatches and the weight is flopping around in your hand, it's probably too light for you.

10 Essential Kettlebell Exercises

These exercises are your staple that you can and should begin adding to your routine today


Though this is a hold rather than an exercise, knowing how to properly grip a kettlebell is vital before incorporating kettlebell training into your regimen.


In general, the halo is an excellent shoulder exercise. Though it may be done with a variety of equipment, kettlebells are the greatest choice. Halos are an excellent approach to strengthening the upper body and enhancing shoulder mobility.


A farmer's carry, like the halos, can be performed with a variety of additional pieces of equipment. The shape and size of a kettlebell, on the other hand, keeps the centre of resistance near to the control joint, allowing you to maintain greater control of your posture throughout the exercise.


This press is ideal for anyone who wishes to incorporate shoulder-strengthening exercises but lacks shoulder mobility. As an added bonus, this type of press is excellent for spine mobility.


We're now moving on to high-intensity ballistic training. The kettlebell clean is a terrific way to get started with kettlebell power workouts. This is also an excellent and safe workout for a newbie to do.


The all-powerful kettlebell swing. This is probably the most well-known kettlebell workout. Though this is an intermediate exercise that will take some time to get used to, it is a movement that most people can start doing rather quickly.

Because a kettlebell is nothing more than a quick, ballistic deadlift, I advise my clients to wait until they can deadlift their own body weight before introducing kettlebell swings.


Now let’s marry the previous 2 exercises to increase the metabolic impact.


This exercise is excellent once your shoulders have reached a healthy range of motion. Anyone suffering from shoulder pain or injury should not attempt it.

This is a terrific approach to maintaining healthy shoulder and spine mobility for people who can safely add windmills.


A genuine full-body workout. It should be noted that this exercise should be learned using only your body weight before adding kettlebells, and resistance should be added gradually.


Again, only individuals with healthy shoulders and range of motion should attempt this. You should first master kettlebell cleans and windmills before attempting a snatch.

How Long Should A Kettlebell Workout Be?

Though kettlebells may appear to be a whole new world of equipment to some, try not to think of them any differently than any other piece of equipment.

If you do the exercises in the 'Foundation' section above, that can be a 45-60 minute workout.

However, for most people, introducing power or more advanced exercises should be done in short bursts of 5-10 minutes.

As a general rule, when introducing a new exercise or skill, begin the session with these exercises to guarantee you're ready to learn and less prone to experience fatigue-related form difficulties.

Kettlebells to Burn Fat

If you read my post on the 7 Best Exercises to Lose Weight and Burn Calories, you already know that the best exercises to burn calories are complex exercises that engage many muscle groups and challenge multiple skills at the same time. As a result, kettlebells are a fantastic fat-burning tool.

Though not all kettlebell movements are intense, the great majority of kettlebell training needs stability, suppleness, and strength, as well as the utilisation of multiple muscle groups at the same time.

This fact, combined with the ability to rapidly start, incorporating ballistic and plyometric training into your routine, makes kettlebell training a terrific alternative for burning fat and performing better in the gym.

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