Having initially being used by the Russian military and Olympic team, kettlebells have now found their way into gyms all over the country. As a result, what was once a Soviet secret is now a staple of gym classes and personal training programs everywhere. So what is it about kettlebell training that makes it so effective? Why should you give them a try?
The first reason kettlebells are so effective is that they allow you to train functionally. This means that they allow you to carry out exercises that are in line with how your body naturally moves and operates; how it naturally functions. By replicating many of the movements you perform on a daily basis, your muscles, joints, tendons and ligaments become stronger; increasing your range of motion and preventing injury. Your whole body becomes stronger and more efficient.
Functional training also utilises lots of your muscles at once, particularly smaller muscles that are often neglected by other forms of exercise. By using more of your muscles, a greater demand is placed on your body and it is required to work harder. This results in more energy being used, more fat being burned and your metabolism being higher. All of which causes you to lose weight and get in shape faster.
A second reason kettlebells are so effective is their versatility; that it can be used to perform so many different exercises. It’s startling that such a humble piece of equipment can be used to work any part of your body in so many different ways. It’s designed in such a way that just changing the way you hold it allows for new exercises and routines. The kettlebell’s design allows you to link together exercises seamlessly, to the point where it’s possible to work your entire body without putting the bell down between exercises!
Here are two great exercises to get your started:
Performing the squat with a kettlebell provides a simple way to add resistance to the exercise and place a greater demand on your body. Squat nice and deep to really work your bum in addition to your legs.
The swing is one of the marquee exercises that can be performed with the kettlebell and really highlights its benefits. It’s a functional exercise that works your legs, bum, back, arms and abs. In a word: everything. It also really gets your heart racing; do this exercise for a minute and feel your heartbeat. You’ll be amazed!
So if you’re ready to try something new or are itching to take your exercise sessions to the next level, I recommend giving a kettlebell a shot. It won’t take long until you see and feel its benefits and its versatility will keep you hooked.