Time is the number one excuse for why people don’t exercise. Think about it: all of us want to be strong and fit, but few of us have endless hours to invest in working out. And what do you do when you think you don’t have enough time to workout? You skip it altogether. Enter: kettlebells. These cannonball-shaped weights can ramp up your workouts so you accomplish more in less time—the typical kettle bell workout burns up to 20 calories per minute, which is equivalent to running a 6-minute mile. Interested? Read on.
According to the American Council on Exercise, kettlebells can provide a higher intensity workout than the usual strength training routine in a shorter amount of time. This is because kettlebell training simultaneously works your cardio endurance, strength, balance and flexibility. Using the kettlebell helps you perform a greater range of motion and activate more muscles with each movement. Let’s take a look at the different parts of the kettlebell, how to use it, and what you need to do in order to get a safe, effective workout in less time.
Kettlebells are weighted balls with a handle attached, which allow the weight to swing as you move it from place to place. Unlike the dumbbell which has a fixed position—equal on both sides—the kettlebell allows for more movement, a bigger range of motion, and thus, the activation of more muscles.
Handle: Most common spot to hold, so you can swing the bell and pass it from hand to hand.
Horns: Alternate grip, especially if you are holding the bell upside down.
Base: The heaviest part of the bell. Gripping it here provides more stability.
Core core core!: Before you even move, pull your core in and tighten your abdominal muscles like you are zipping up a tight pair of jeans. Keep that muscle pulled in the entire time you work—this is what keeps your movements safe and helps define your abs.
Stand tall: Keep good posture, pull your shoulders back and down, and keep your chest lifted.
Move with control: You are using dynamic movement, but stay in control and don’t fling the weight around. Originate the movement from your hips and core.
Use a Professional: Dynamic movements that come with kettlebell workouts can also put you at greater risk for injury if they aren’t used properly. Try a class, hire a trainer or follow along with our new Raise Some Bell workout program on Get Healthy U TV.
Related: The 6-Minute No-Equipment Workout
10-Minute Kettlebell Workout
If you’re looking for a full-length kettlebell program, be sure to check out Raise Some Bell on my workout streaming service, Get Healthy U TV; led by Amy Dixon, it’s full of high intensity kettlebell workouts that will have you sweating and torching calories like you can’t believe! On days when you’re pressed for time, you can still get in a solid kettlebell workout with this quick 10-minute kettlebell workout I did with Prevention. This full-body routine is a time-effective routine you can do on its own or add on to existing workouts for an added boost of kettlebell power!