Daily Archives: May 16, 2018

kettlebell workout for weight loss (2)

Kettlebells for Weight Loss Series – Part 2

This is the second of 10 workouts in our Kettlebells for Weight Loss series. While the main contributing factor for weight loss is diet, the following kettlebell workout can help you build muscle mass, which increases metabolism. The workout below challenges both the anaerobic and aerobic energy systems, which increases calorie burn and stimulates lean muscle growth.

Workout Instructions

As far as equipment goes, this workout requires a single kettlebell. Use a moderate weight kettlebell that allows you to complete the desired number of reps for each exercise with good form.

Perform 10 reps per side for each exercise in the circuit. Complete three full circuits. Rest 45-60 seconds between circuits. If you are successfully completing three circuits with good form, increase the number of circuits or the kettlebell weight for additional challenge.

Single Arm Swing

  1. Stand upright with your feet about hip-width apart and a kettlebell on the floor about two feet in front of your feet.
  2. Hinge at the hips to grab onto the handle with one hand while maintaining a neutral spine. Set the shoulders down and away from the ears to engage the lats and upper back.
  3. Swing the kettlebell back between your legs, then powerfully extend your hips by driving the floor away and contracting your glutes and abs. Let the kettlebell float to shoulder height.
  4. Let the kettlebell drop back down along the same path, only flexing at the hips once the arms reach your waist.
  5. Perform all reps on one arm before switching to the other side.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo1RaQPOgKs

Front Squat

  1. Stand upright holding the kettlebell in rack position on your right side – meaning the ball of the kettlebell is resting against your upper arm and forearm, with your elbow tucked into your side and palm facing in.
  2. Squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor, keeping your weight in your heels. The elbow will come off the body to balance the weight of the kettlebell in the squat position.
  3. Push through your heels to return to the starting position.
  4. Perform all reps on one arm before switching to the other side.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qozdc7JW9dg

Reverse Lunge

  1. Stand upright holding the kettlebell in rack position on your right side – meaning the ball of the kettlebell is resting against your upper arm and forearm, with your elbow tucked into your side and palm facing in.
  2. Take a big step back with your right foot, dropping your right knee down until it hovers right above the ground. Keep the torso upright.
  3. Drive into the heel of the left foot to return to the starting position.
  4. Perform all reps stepping back on the right side, then switch to the left.

Curtsy Lunge

  1. Stand upright with your feet about hip width apart, holding the kettlebell handle on either side.
  2. Keeping your right foot facing forward and the kettlebell at your chest, place your left leg at a 45-degree angle behind your right leg, bending down until the left knee hovers just above the floor.
  3. Drive through the heel of your front foot to rise back up to your starting position.
  4. Once you have completed all reps on one side, switch to the other side.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6SapVmmKn8I

kettlebell benefits for women

Two-Hand Swing

  1. Stand upright with your feet about hip-width apart and a kettlebell on the floor about two feet in front of your feet.
  2. Hinge at the hips to grab onto the handle with both hands while maintaining a neutral spine. Set the shoulders down and away from the ears to engage the lats and upper back.
  3. Swing the kettlebell back between your legs, then powerfully extend your hips by driving the floor away and contracting your glutes and abs. Let the kettlebell float to shoulder height.
  4. Let the kettlebell drop back down along the same path, only flexing at the hips once the arms reach your waist.

Shoulder-to-Shoulder Press

  1. Stand holding the ball of the kettlebell in both hands at one shoulder.
  2. Press the kettlebell up overhead, fully extending your arms.
  3. Lower the kettlebell down to the opposite shoulder, and then press the kettlebell back overhead and back down to the starting side.
  4. Steps 1-3 constitute one repetition. Repeat for the desired amount of repetitions.

Alternating Bent Row

  1. Hinge at the hips with your knees slightly bent, back neutral, and a kettlebell on the floor between your feet.
  2. Grab the kettlebell with one hand. Pull the shoulder blade back and flex the lats, bringing the elbow of the arm holding the kettlebell just past the body.
  3. Lower the kettlebell back to the floor and quickly switch hands, pulling the kettlebell up to the opposite side.
  4. Rapidly alternate sides each rep while maintaining a neutral spine.

Halo

  1. Stand upright holding a kettlebell upside down at chest level, grasping the handle on either side.
  2. Lift the kettlebell up and over one shoulder, around the back of your head, and over the opposite shoulder, finishing back in the starting position.
  3. Complete all reps in one direction, then switch directions.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vk5K6aNZeiI

Around the World

  1. Stand upright holding the kettlebell in your right hand with your arm straight.
  2. Swing the kettlebell out and around to the side of your right hip, then behind your back.
  3. Switch hands behind you and continue to swing the kettlebell around to the side of your left hip.
  4. Switch hands again in front of you to complete a full circle and repeat the circular motion.
  5. Complete all reps in one direction then switch directions.

This workout can be performed 2-3 times per week. Combined with a healthy diet, kettlebell workouts can help you lose weight and increase metabolism. Utilizing kettlebells in your daily workouts will also enhance your strength and stamina for daily activities.

For more information: The Benefits of Kettlebell Training for Women

kettlebell swing

The Benefits of Kettlebell Training for Women

A common misconception about kettlebell training is that women who lift heavy will bulk up and look more masculine as a result. The truth is that most women simply do not have enough testosterone in their bodies to build as much muscle as men. More importantly, women who lift kettlebells see great improvements in strength and endurance, anaerobic capacity, and bone density levels – leading to an improvement in their overall health.

Researching the effect of weightlifting on men seems to be more straightforward than researching the effect of weightlifting on women, since women’s bodies are subject to more monthly fluctuations due to menstruation and pregnancy. Coupled with the fact that lifting weights has only become popular among women recently, there is a much larger base of male-specific research for researchers to compare results and analyze the differences. With the number of women involved in lifting weights steadily rising in recent years, however, more studies are popping up discussing the effects of exercise protocols on women.

One such study done on women and exercise was done by a group of researchers at the University of Saskatchewan in 2015. The researchers shared a curiosity about how women’s bodies react to different types of exercise. The research group studied the efficacy rates of different activities included in high-intensity interval training (HIIT) using kettlebell and free-weights. They found that women who participated in HIIT training – one minute of all-out work followed by three minutes of rest – using kettlebells and free-weights for sixty minutes, three times a week, saw significant increases in their squat, overhead press, and deadlift strength, as well as their squat endurance. Additionally, anaerobic capacities of all participants increased across both HIIT and kettlebell training programs. Anaerobic power is what we use for our high energy and fast movements. While this is useful for speed, power, and building new muscle tissue, healthy anaerobic pathways are also essential for muscle recovery. The takeaway message of the research is that increasing anaerobic power capacity through lifting kettlebells is a good thing for your muscular health. Even if power and speed aren’t your goals, you’ll feel better during your workouts and recover much faster post-workout.

Besides increasing your anaerobic capacity, load-bearing exercise such as kettlebell lifting is especially important for women to avoid suffering the effects of osteoporosis. As women age and go through menopause, levels of estrogen decline, which results in loss of bone density, called osteoporosis. Osteoporosis leads to increased risk of fractures as you age, and fractures in the elderly have a thirty percent one-year mortality rate.6 You can combat these effects by increasing the number of high-impact exercises – such as those you can do with kettlebells – you do during childbearing years, which will increase bone density and fight the effects of osteoporosis. If you are already experiencing osteoporosis, it’s not too late to incorporate load-bearing exercises with kettlebells to slow the progression.

All women can benefit from incorporating kettlebell training into their fitness regimen. Fitness professionals are finding new and exciting ways to combine kettlebell exercises with traditional strength and cardiovascular exercise to maximize results.  Instead of spending hours in the gym doing the same boring split-body routine, you can learn new movements that challenge your entire body and mind – which makes working out more fun! There’s a reason why kettlebells have been around for hundreds of years and are rising in popularity every year: they are one of the most effective tools for fitness. While there is definitely a learning curve to getting started with kettlebells, your body will quickly gain the strength and endurance to make the challenge worth it.

for more information: Kettlebells for Weight Loss Series – Part 2