Kettlebells are becoming more and more popular—and for good reason. With the right technique, they can help you hit multiple muscle groups with a single move.
Even though they might look intimidating, do yourself a favor and test-drive this quick, total-body kettlebell workout and see for yourself what all the hype is about. Start with a weight that’s comfortable, and perform 1 to 3 sets of 8 to 20 reps of each of the following exercises.
Once you’ve mastered these moves, try your hand at our 20-minute kettlebell and bodyweight circuit.
Contrary to how it looks, kettlebell swings aren’t shoulders exercises, but rather they train your core and lower body. They primarily work your glutes and hamstrings—your “posterior chain,” in trainer-speak.
1. Start by holding the handle of a kettlebell with both hands using an overhand grip. Stand with legs hip-width apart.
2. Squat down with your arms extended downward between your legs.
3. Draw your body up, thrusting forward with your hips and allowing that momentum to lift the kettlebell so it’s at eye-height.
4. Bring the kettlebell in an arc back between your legs, bringing your hips back and making sure to not tilt your back too far forward.
5. Thrust your hips forward again to start the next rep.
This is another great move for your core.
1. Start in a squatting position, holding a medium-weight kettlebell in your right hand between your legs.
2. Circle the kettlebell between your legs and grab onto it with your left hand, creating a figure-8 shape as you move it around and between your legs.
Kettlebell two-arm high pull
1. Hold the handle of a medium-weight kettlebell with both hands, and stand with feet hip-width apart. Squat down, keeping arms straight.
2. Fire your hips and glutes as you extend your body, and pull the kettlebell to your chest. At the top of the move, your elbows should be pointing up.
Note: Skip this one if you have shoulder problems.