Kettlebell Roots

kettlebell history“Kettlebell training has long been used as a dynamic tool to develop strength and endurance for centuries. The origin of the kettlebell is still a matter of speculation, but archaeological records show evidence of their use in Ancient Greece.  However, as the Russian culture views strength as an honourable quality, during festivals and fairs, vendors started swinging and lifting these kettlebells to show their strength, and quickly recognized the health benefits related to this activity.

Kettlebells in North America were non-existent in the later parts of the 20th century.  In 2002, the kettlebell made it on to the Rolling Stones Magazine Hot List as ‘the Hot Weight of the Year’. Currently, among the RKC, there are various kettlebell instructor certification bodies, including the International Kettlebell & Fitness Federation, the Agatsu Kettlebell Certification in Canada, & The World Kettlebell Club, among others.” 1

Read more about the history of the kettlebell here.

Kettlebell Workout

The kettlebell workout is  an excellent way to burn fat, build muscle, and boost metabolism. It also makes for a great fast cardio workout.  Kettlebell  foundational movements can be progressed and regressed for clients and athletes of all levels and can deliver a dynamic full body workout.

“Using the kettlebell is hard work. It’s a skill and it must be taught and continually refined.” ~ David Ganulin of Kettlebell Concepts  2

Kettlebell Training

A personal trainer will help the client to learn, observe, practice and implement safe and effective kettlebell training techniques. If you have an injury or are just starting an exercise program they will help you to modify the exercises.  Depending on the goals of a program, a kettlebell could be used for the warm up, for the power/velocity/explosive component, or for the strength component of the workout.   Using a kettlebell for high intensity interval training has been shown to be the most effective way to burn fat. The kettlebell can also improve strength and lean body mass. 3

“Here is our general rule of thumb for those who have done some type of conventional strength training but are entirely new to kettlebells:   • Adult females: 8-12 kgs • Adult Males: 14-16 kgs • Teenage Females: 8-10kgs • Teenage Males: 10-14 kgs If the trainee is completely new to any type of strength training, they will be at the low end of the range listed above.” ~ Mike Stehle, ATC, CKT-2

An effective full body strength and conditioning program should contain the following movement components:

  • A hip hinge for posterior chain strength which you would get from the kettlebell swing;
  • an upper body push/pull which you would get from the press;
  • a lower body push which is provided by the kettlebell front squat or goblet squat; and,
  • The get up provides a combination of strength, balance, mobility, and stability.

*Precautions:

See your doctor before trying this workout if you have any injuries, illnesses or other conditions. The kettlebell workout is for people who have been exercising for some time and have experience with cardio and strength training workouts.  Working with a personal trainer will ensure a safe workout.

Kettlebells vs. conventional weight-training tools

kettlebells vs dumbells

According to the Kettlebell Athletics manual, here’s why kettlebells are superior:

  • Kettlebell training produces strength at extreme ranges of motion.
  • Kettlebells exploit endless exercise variations with just one tool. Just change your grip, and you’ve changed the muscles and movement pattern.
  • Kettlebell training teaches your body how to absorb force and redirect it.
  • Kettlebell training amplifies your power output. You perform moves very quickly.
  • Kettlebell training teaches your body how to contend with a constantly changing
    center of gravity. It swings, it moves,and it’s not static.
  • Kettlebell training builds powerful forearms and a strong grip. You have to hold on tightly.
  • Kettlebells improve your cardio and respiratory fitness. The swinging motion can really get your heart-rate up.
  • Kettlebell training eliminates the need for a large training facility. They’re small and only need a compact space on the gym floor to be effective.
  • Kettlebell training allows you to reduce overall training time. It’s all about compound and explosive movements, which bring results quickly. 3

 

personal training ScarbouroughBody Form Fitness is a small studio gym in Scarborough that exclusively offers one-on-one personal training in a semi-private environment. Serving clients in Scarborough, Toronto, Mississauga, Pickering, Ajax and Markham, we build you a customized fitness/exercise program based on your needs and let our personal trainers guide you through your program in 30-minute sessions.

Kick-start your fitness regime today by booking your complementary consultation!

 Together, we can make it happen!

 


Sources for this article:

1 http://www.kettlebellscience.com/kettlebell-history.html

2 http://www.builtlean.com/2013/01/09/kettlebell-training/

3 http://www.mensfitness.com/training/pro-tips/fit-5-kettlebell-basics

4 http://aladygoeswest.com/2014/07/31/the-details-on-kettlebell-athletics-training/