Your Workouts Reviewed: Kettlebell Killer


Everyone’s got a workout of their own—your “go-to” routine. But is your routine good enough? We asked our Men’s Fitness Facebook friends if they had a killer routine to share and subject to the scrutiny of our readers. The big catch? Our team of training experts also review it, critique it and tweak it if necessary.

Workout Submission

Jason Kenyon Men’s Fitness Facebook Friend

“My killer workout is when I do all the exercises in a super set, rather than broken up in to routines for different days. This is an all kettlebell workout with one kettlebell. I use this routine for burning fat and strengthening my core. Some days I run through this routine two times which lasts up to 30 minutes of intense weight training and cardio all in one shot. On regular days, I break these and a couple other exercises up into different routines of about 5 or 6 exercises in two sets for an intense 15 minute workout.”

Exercise One – Turkish get up x 10 each side

Exercise Two – Clean & Press x 10 each side

Exercise Three – Deadlift x 10

Exercise Four – Snatch x 10 each side

Exercise Five – Sumo Squat x 10 each side

Exercise Six – Swing x 10 each side

Exercise Seven – Squat x 10

Exercise Eight – Windmill x 10 each side

Exercise Nine – Figure 8 x 10

Exercise Ten – Curls x 10 each side

Expert Assessment #1

Mike Stehle, ATC, CKT-2 and founder of Training Room Online in Avon and Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey
Follow Mike on Twitter @njkettlebells

Pros: All of these are great movements, and starting with get ups is a great idea due to the complexity of the movement. The more complex movements should always be placed at the beginning of the training session to keep good technique through out and it is a good idea to break up this routine into 5 or 6 exercises.

Cons: Ten get ups on each side is too many. The get up is meant to be done slowly and deliberately for low reps (1-5) due to the complexity and nature of the movement. I would start the workout with 3-5 minutes of alternate arm get ups as a nice warm up. The clean and press would not be good following the get up due to the amount of overhead work involved in both movements because chances of muscle fatigue and losing form are great. In my opinion, there is too much overhead work in this combination of movements. The snatch and the windmill require a lot of skill as well as shoulder stabilization. This amount of volume on the shoulder stabilizers is liable to cause muscle failure which could lead to poor technique and injury. There needs to be a better balance of movements and throw in at least one pull movement such as a kettlebell row. Also, 10/10 windmills are too many due to the complexity of the movement, stick with 3-5.

Comments: Overall, there needs to be more of a balance to this workout. I would lower the volume to 5/5 reps and do a few more sets (3-5). I would also limit the amount of overhead work to no more then 2 movements per workout. For example, do clean and presses on one day and snatches on the next. Separate the windmills and the get ups since they are very similar in nature. I like to use the following rules when creating a full body kettlebell training routine. One lower body push: squat One upper body push: clean and press One hinge (posterior chain movement): snatch or swing or DL one upper body pull: curl or some type of row One core movement: get up or windmill ( done early in the workout) Do not go to muscular failure and compromise form. If you stick to these rules, you will have a nicely balanced and safe routine.”

Expert Assessment #2

Dan Trink C.S.C.S., CPT is the Director of Personal Training Operations at Peak Performance NYC and the trainer in our 8-Week Fitness Transformassacre
Follow Trink on Twitter @TrinkFitness

Pros: Kettlebells are a fun, effective tool and you are utilizing them in what I feel is the best way possible: metabolic circuits. You have a nice variety of many of the classic KB lifts and I like that you are using explosvie, upper body, lower body and core movements in your program. That’s a great strategy for driving up your work capacity and torching fat. And moves such as the Turkish Get Up, Snatch and Clean and Press have great carry over for general sports conditioning.

Cons: There’s no way you should be using just one kettlebell throughout the entire circuit. If you are deadlifting the same weight for 10 reps that you are using for 10 reps of windmills than your either have freaky strong obliques or your deadlift is quite sad. Use appropriate loads for each lift. 10 Turkish Get Ups are a lot, especially at the start of the circuit. You are going to fry your core before you get to any of the more dynamic (snatch, clean and press) and strength (squats, deadlifts) movements. Finally, there are a lot of lifts here. Performing this circuit for 30 minutes straight leads me to believe that you are either using a really light kettlebell, your form is breaking down or it’s actually Jason Kenyon and not Clark Kent that is Superman’s alter-ego.

Comments: I think ketllebell circuits can be a great addition for anyone who is looking to add a metabolic conditioning component to their training. However when you train with them exclusively in this manner you are missing out on a lot of the benefits of more traditional strength training. Just because you like to use kettlebells doesn’t mean you ONLY have to use kettlebells. I would recommend cutting down this circuit to 4 or 5 key exercises and using that 2-3 times per week for improved work capacity and fat loss. Add that to a strength routine that includes squats, presses, pull-ups and deadlifts and you’ll be a superhero in no time.