Kettlebell Workouts for Beginners: Everything You Need to Know
You’ve seen them around the gym, the teapot looking weights lining the free weight racks, but what are they? Today, we want to dive into what is a kettlebell and give you some kettlebell workouts for beginners so that you can use this diverse equipment with confidence the next time you stop by the gym.
What is a Kettlebell?
A kettlebell is a form of free weight that is designed to allow for more reps at a faster speed. They help to target multiple muscle groups at once and are perfect for aerobic workouts, strength training, or both—which makes this equipment very diverse.
Kettlebell Exercises For Beginners
To begin your kettlebell routine squat, stand up straight with your legs about shoulder-distance apart. Hold the kettlebell with both hands on the sides of the handle. Point your toes slightly outward and hold your elbows down to your side, leaving your kettlebell close to your chest. Next, engage your core and sink into the squat position, holding your upper body upright, and squatting down until your legs are at a 90-degree angle. Be sure to push your hips back so that you are not hunching over your knees. Remember, kettlebell beginners; it doesn’t matter how fast you go in this kettlebell movement. Squat in a slow and controlled manner, and be sure to use the correct form throughout the exercise. Repeat 15 – 20 times.
If you have walked by someone using kettlebells for their workout, you have most certainly seen them swinging their kettlebells through their legs and out in front of them. It looks like a ton of fun, and, honestly, it is. But, a kettlebell swing is also a fantastic dynamic workout. Start by standing with your feet about shoulder-distance apart and pointing your toes outward 45-degrees. With your kettlebell on the floor slightly behind you, hinge at your hips, lean forward, reach between your legs, and grab the kettlebell at the handle with both of your hands. With a straight back and straight arms, use your hips to thrust the kettlebell forward and back. You will not be lifting the kettlebell with your arms during swings, but using your hips to push the kettlebell forward. Repeat 15 – 20 times.
For the kettlebell lunge, you will take two kettlebells, holding them to each of your sides. Then, take a big step forward, sinking down until your front leg makes a 90-degree angle (your knee should not go over your toe), and your back knee touches on the ground. Then, stand up and switch legs. Be sure to keep your core engaged and your back straight throughout the routine. Repeat 10 times and switch sides.
Rows target traps, biceps, the back of the body, and core, and are great for arm day or a full-body training session. Similarly to the kettlebell swing, start by standing with your feet about shoulder-distance apart with the kettlebell between your feet, hinge at your hips, and bend forward with a flat back. Then, grab your kettlebell with one hand from between your feet, and pull the kettlebell out to the side (the same side as the arm you are using), keeping your arm and shoulder near the body as you pull up, and then move the kettlebell back down to the center again. Remember to keep your chest up and your back flat throughout the movement. This will require you to engage your core. Repeat 10x and switch sides.
Kettlebell Steering Wheel
You will feel your shoulders burn with a steering wheel workout. Hold your kettlebell on the side of the handle with both hands. Put it straight out in front of your chest, not going higher than your shoulders. Then, rotate the kettlebell back and forth as if you are moving a steering wheel. Try and continue this for 30-seconds to one minute until you cannot go any longer. Steering wheels are great for sculpting your shoulders.
The kettlebell windmill is excellent for strengthening up the core muscles in your obliques, which so many of us want to target—but it is also perfect for helping with hip and shoulder mobility as well. Start with your feet a little bit further than shoulder-distance apart, and your feet pointing 45-degrees towards one side (this is the side you will bend towards), Hold the kettlebell straight up in the air with the arm opposite of the way your feet are pointing (so, if your feet are pointing left, start with your right arm). Then, press your hip out to the same side as your arm, and with your opposite hand, come down and touch the ground. Come back up by driving your hips forward and engaging your core and glutes. Repeat 5 – 10 times and switch sides. Try to look up at the kettlebell the entire time, and do not bend your arms.
If you would like to try training with kettlebells, stop by a Chuze Fitness location near you or try a kettlebell workout at home. Remember to focus on breathing and form. We want to make sure that you get through your workout injury-free. We cannot wait to be a part of your wellness journey.