Kettlebells are popular for body toning because they yield excellent results. Kettlebell exercises are dynamic in nature, challenging every muscle of your body. They increase overall strength, fitness, and help you burn extra fat faster. Gym-going people feel kettlebells work better than cardio and their use is increasing. People are moving away from a slow and controlled workout and opting for this ballistic strength training. If you are looking to pump up your workout, then incorporate this useful training in your exercise sessions.
What Are Kettlebells
Kettlebells are cast iron or steel weights with a handle on the top and a flat base. It constitutes the round bell, the handle, and the “horns.” Horns refer to the sloping ends of the handle that connect it to the bell.
What Makes Them Different
The distinct shape of the bell makes it different from dumbbells because it changes the exercise dynamics. The “U” shape changes the way the weight works with your body. The shape of the kettlebell is such that the center of gravity is not in your hands. The training involves movements which requires readjusting positions to lift the weights and the whole body muscles come into play. This means that the body is trained for endurance, flexibility, power, and agility. It is ideal for athletic training and competitive sport.
Working out with kettlebells is a high-intensity exercise that will get your heart pumping. You can burn 20 calories in one minute. The base position when holding your kettlebell at your chest is called a “rack position”. Kettlebells can be used to do numerous exercises including:
- Turkish get-ups
- shoulder presses
The bells are gripped mainly from the handle while exercising, but not always. For squats handling the kettlebell from the horns will be better and at times it is also gripped from the bell. The way you grip it depends on the type of exercise you are doing.
Things to Know About Kettlebells
The most versatile equipment comes in different weights, sizes and designs. The weight can range from 5 lbs to over 100 lbs. You can also get colored ones if that is what you fancy. Some come with rubber coatings to protect floors from impact. You can use kettlebells like dumbbells and load them with plates. Get a kettlebell that offers a strong grip and doesn’t have a thick handle.
As for how much weight you should start with, it all depends on the individual’s fitness level. Usually, men start with one or two bells that are 16 kilos (about 35 pounds). And for women, an 8-kilo bell (17.5 pounds) also works.
How Much Do Kettlebells Cost?
Kettlebells can be anywhere between $10 to $100. The cost depends on the weight and brand. Usually the heavier the kettlebell, the more it costs.
The Top Kettlebell Brands
The kettlebell has a strong construction with the logo engraved so it doesn’t interfere with the hand while exercising. The bell is made from cast iron and then painted with a powder chalk-like coating which makes sure the iron is protected. It has a flat, smooth base and comes with colored bands on handles. The texture of the bell provides a firm grip when your hands are sweaty. It is ideal for athletes who want their kettlebell to go the distance. The brand provides durable and high-quality kettlebells that offer an excellent balance. The highlight is that the bells come with a lifetime warranty.
It is recommended for those looking to use kettlebells at home. The rubber-coated kettlebell performs well and is drop-resistance, so you need not worry about damaging your floors. The urethane coating creates a smooth black surface. It has a strong powder coated handle and a flat machined base which prevents it from wobbling. The handles are color-coded for easy identification and the kettlebells come in five weight increments. The single cast iron kettlebell with the “R” logo is perfect for indoor training of all kinds.
This is suited for beginners and all kinds of fitness enthusiasts who are on the hunt for ultra-durable kettlebells. Onnit kettlebells can be used for static or dynamic exercises. The kettlebell has a chip-resistant coating and comes with a powder finish to give a strong grip. It is pretty solid with handles a little over an inch in diameter, ideal to work your grip and the bell don’t cause unnecessary fatigue. It won’t irritate your hands as you continue with your grueling workouts. Available in weights from 4 kg to 32 kg, Onnit kettlebells come with color codings and offer a good budget option.
Kettlebell training provides better form, posture, and alignment. Since kettlebells require more muscle activation, whether you are doing presses, squats, swings, or snatches, it helps to build muscle strength.
- It helps to improve coordination.
- The challenging training makes you more agile and flexible.
- It is more time-efficient. It uses multiple fitness components and gets faster results as you burn more calories in a shorter period of time.
- The workout improves cardiovascular health.
- Lifting weights keeps the body strong and helps build resistance.
- It trains you to be better at sports and other exercises.
- Since kettlebells offer a fast workout, it trains the body in eccentric deceleration and a strong body protects you from injuries.
- Compact equipment which is great for a home gym.
Word of Caution
All kinds of kettlebells must be used safely. If you are a beginner, get kettlebell training from your gym and learn how it is done from a professional. In case you have a poor form and take up heavy kettlebells it can cause an injury. Start from a lighter kettlebell workout, perfect the technique, and move on to the advanced exercises according to your fitness level.
Now you understand more about kettlebells and their benefits. You can incorporate them into your workout to build strength, speed, and endurance. Bottoms up!