“The Kettlebell is an Ancient Russian Weapon Against Weakness” – Pavel Tsatsouline
If you are looking for one of the best ways to develop power, strength, coordination, endurance, and even thick wrists 😉 look no further than the kettlebell. In fact, since I added kettlebells to my personal training plan I have noticed an increase in my ability to produce power, my muscle endurance is the best it has even been, and my movement patterns are improving at an almost unbelievable rate! To say the least, I am a big fan!
So why should you be using kettlebells? Wow, where do I start? Well let me first say that Kettlebells just might be the best piece of physical fitness equipment that I have ever used. If that is not a good enough reason let me give you 7 more:
- Kettlebells are small, portable and indestructible -Which means they don’t take up a lot of room in your house, your car, your hotel room, and/or at the park. They are the perfect “anywhere” fitness device that builds strength and improves your cardio vascular system. Not to mention they will last forever, that’s right, your kettlebell will become a family heirloom because it will be around longer than you!
- Kettlebells produce real world strength – I have been in the fitness game for a long time and nothing fixes your muscle imbalances/weakness like kettlebells. This is because by design, the (kettlebell’s) center of gravity is “off”; in other words, the center of gravity is about 6 to 8 – inches away from your grip. Unlike barbells that put the center of gravity in line with your “grip” and joints. The off-centered weight of a kettlebell will force you to use more stabilizer muscles, and work the targeted muscles through a longer range of motion. This mimics the real world as we rarely find objects with perfect centers of gravity like dumbbells and barbells.
- Fixes movement patterns – One of the biggest advantages of using kettlebells is that they allow for nearly perfect movement. Because they are small and compact they allow one to perform total body movements such as the Turkish getup fairly easy* (*easy is definitely a relative term here). Also when it comes to more traditional movements such as the squat, deadlift, and press kettlebells have this amazing way of forcing perfect form!
- Teaches you a skill – Kettlebells resemble a sport, in the sense that they are technique intensive and just like a boxer is always working on that perfect jab or perfect footwork, a kettlebell athlete is always working on that perfect swing, perfect snatch, or perfect Turkish Get-up! Not to mention the coordination and concentration required improves your mind-muscle connection making you a better functioning human.
- Kettlebells bridge the gap between strength and cardio – Kettlebells are small and relativity easy to handle (again easy is a relative term) which allows for many explosive movement possibilities. Explosive movements such as the swing, clean, and snatch not only build muscle but also will leave you dripping in sweat and gasping for air!!!
- Kettlebells reduce overall training time – All you need is one kettlebell to get an amazing total body workout. This need for only one piece of equipment has 2 distinct advantages, 1) You can quickly move from one exercise to the next with no set-up and 2) Once you become advanced you can enter kettlebell flow which is moving from one exercise to the next in one fluid motion.
- It is an art – The fluid movement possibilities of kettlebells allow you to create your own “dance” and just like any dance there is an almost indescribable beauty to the dance between a human and a kettlebell.
There you have it, kettlebells are the definitely the real deal but beware, mastering the kettlebell takes time and concentration. So while kettlebells can take your fitness to the next level, they are by no means a short cut to success. The kettlebell requires an commitment and an open mind, so impatient, shallow minded people looking for quick results need not apply.