In this day in age, we are all about the new gizmos and gadgets or the latest and greatest ‘App’. There are smartphone apps that can track your steps, put new filters on your selfies, and others that make you send endless invitations to your friends so you can keep rearranging pieces of candy.
Being able to use an App to track your steps, an App for calories, an App for sleep, and an App for heart rate is a step in the right direction, but if you want the best, all-around application for your fitness, it is the application of the kettlebell.
That’s right, put those smart phones and new apps away, and spend some time with the reliable kettlebell.
The kettlebell dates back to centuries of use. It is a traditional Russian weight that looks like a cannonball and can deliver great results for what you may need. Now, what do you need in your training? Let’s look at some of the applications of the kettlebell.
A study done by the American Council on Exercise found that kettlebell training can burn up to 20.2 calories a minute! If you span that out over sixty minutes that is over 1,200 calories an hour! Kettlebell training, paired up with healthy eating, can get you where you want to be.
Kettlebell exercises can help increase your mobility and stability. We engage in exercises like the goblet squat, Turkish get ups, and arm bars to help with the hips and shoulders. We use the goblet squat as a standalone exercise or a mobility drill to help open the hips and gain a little more movement capacity. The Turkish get up is used for creating strong and stable shoulders, while the arm bar is used to help with thoracic mobility and shoulder stability.
Yes, you can get strong with just kettlebells. With all sizes of kettlebells ranging from 6kg(13lbs) to 48kg(106lbs) +, there are plenty of variables to play with to last you a lifetime. We use what we call grinds and ballistics. Our grinds are presses, squats, and Turkish get ups. Ballistics (explosive lifts) are swings, cleans, and snatches. You can also throw in push press and jerks because of their explosive nature. With all of these lifts we use tension and relaxation techniques to create a strong and safe lifting environment. Creating tension in the body will recruit more muscles to work together, which in turn will get you strong and keep you healthy.
Kettlebell training will work to strengthen your weak spots:
This day in age, a strong, firm handshake is turning into a floppy five finger fish. As Charles Barkley would say, “that’s just turrible…turrible, turrrible”! This could also be related to how soft we are getting as a society, but that topic can be saved for another day.
Enter the Kettlebell. Carrying around some cannonballs and holding onto the bell during your ballistics, will develop some good grip strength that can transform your grip and forearm. There is also a connection between having a strong grip and a strong shoulder. Recent research has also found a link between grip strength and overall health. Read this part from the article:
“Each 11-pound decrease in grip strength over the course of the study was linked to a 16% higher risk of dying from any cause, a 17% higher risk of dying from heart disease, a 9% higher risk of stroke, and a 7% higher risk of heart attack.
The connections between grip strength and death or cardiovascular disease remained strong even after the researchers adjusted for other things that can contribute to heart disease or death, such as age, smoking, exercise, and other factors.”
The kettlebell fights your weaknesses and makes you harder to kill! As the head man, Pavel Tsatsouline would say, “Kettlebell training will make you a better man.. even if you’re a woman.”
There are many great ways to develop core strength with kettlebells. Kettlebell training does not work in isolation, it incorporates your whole body as a system. Front squats, rack walks, Turkish get ups, swings, presses…I can keep going with this…all will involve your core and will make your body work as one unit. We also use breathing techniques with our lifts. Your core starts with your breath. You can view your core as a cylinder with your diaphragm as the top and the pelvic floor as the bottom. You will learn how to get a strong core by utilizing your breath while you do these lifts/exercises.
Posterior Chain Strength (the muscles that make up the backside of your body)
The kettlebell will get you out of your everyday ‘hunched’ position. We hunch over our food, in the car, at work, texting, rearranging pieces of candy, etc. Primarily, the swing will activate your postural muscles that hold you upright and out of that hunched position. Your big important glute muscles will turn on or work more efficiently and you will develop a nice, strong back.
Kettlebell training can increase your VO2 Max. There is a high correlation between VO2 max and how well one performs in aerobic endurance events, such as triathlons or marathons. You do not have to go do resistance training and then “get your cardio in”. The kettlebell brings you the best of both worlds in your training session, making your training more time efficient.
These are some of the applications and great benefits of kettlebell training. It is very important to find a qualified kettlebell instructor to get you started. The kettlebell is a great tool and here, at Iron Strength Kettlebell Gym in Sugar Land, Texas, we are StrongFirst certified kettlebell instructors that can teach you how to safely use the kettlebell to transform your strength. If you are not in our area, you can look at the StrongFirst website and find an instructor near you.
Now you just have to ask yourself, is this the App I’ve been searching for? Contact us to get started ASAP!
Iron Strength Kettlebell Gym: 832-500-3700 or Click Here to contact us.