Bodybuilding with Kettle Weights

August 20th, 2009

Kettle weights can be used for more than just burning fat and toning up.  You can also get a great power workout from them and pile on muscle mass in the process.  If you already have a good base, you can use the heavy kettle weights with low reps to increase your size and power.  Russian strong men and Olympic weight lifters have been training with kettle weights for decades so we know they are great for body building.  The kettlebell workout that you are going to do for building muscle mass will require 2 kettle weights since most of the power lifts require 2.  Exercises such as:

  • Turkish Get Up (Core – actually, only requires 1 kettle bell)
  • Double Front Squat (Hamstrings)
  • Double Swing (Quads)
  • Double Military Press (Shoulders)
  • Double Floor Press (Chest)

Apart from the Turkish Get Up, these are all explosive power lifts that are great for building muscle mass.  I have included the Turkish Get Up on this list because it is a fantastic exercise for increasing and maintaining core strength which will be essential to perform the other power exercises correctly, effectively and safely.

The Double Swing is very similar to the normal kettle weight swing but you use 2 kettle weights at once (one in each hand obviously).  Start with both kettle weights on the floor between your feet.  Keeping a straight, flat back, reach down and pick them up allowing them to hang between your legs, swing the kettle weights back between your legs, then swing hard and fast forwards until they are at chest height then let them swing back down again and repeat.  For best results, the movement should be continuous and explosive on the way up and controlled on the way down.  The main muscle worked here is the hamstring but your calves, glutes and shoulders will get some love too.

To work the other major muscle in your legs (quadriceps) we perform the Double Front Squat. Take 2 kettle weights and clean them to your chest to reach the starting position for this exercise.  Stand with your feed at about shoulder width apart or whatever feels comfortable.  Pick a spot on the wall to look at that is at eye level and don’t take your eyes of it.  This will help keep your back flat for the entire exercise. Slowly squat down, concentrate on sticking your backside out, head up and back flat.  Squat as low as you can, pause slightly at the bottom then explode back up.  I say explode back up because it is meant to be an explosive powerful exercise but you should stay in control of your body the whole time and keep good form and technique.  If you lose any form, slow it down a bit until you get your form back.  Safety first!  This exercise works your quadriceps mainly but also works your glutes and your calves.

As you can see, these two kettle weights exercises compliment each other because they work the front (quads) and backs (hamstrings) of your legs.  It is no good just doing squats and building up your quads if your hammies are not getting any workout because you will lose flexibility and will become susceptible to hamstring injury due to the imbalance.   This is why we also work the shoulders AND the chest with the military press and the floor press.  I will cover these two power exercises in my next post.  Till then, keep lifting.


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Kettle Weights and Bells – Is There A Difference?

October 11th, 2009

I got a question from one of my kettle weights blog readers in my email today.  I thought why not throw it back out to the rest of you to answer…Just put the answer in the comments box below.  Thanks guys!

I am thinking of Purchasing some kettle bells but i don’t know whether or not it is worth it if i already have loads of different weights. what do you think – is it actually worth buying kettle bells or just doing the same sort of workout using the weights.

what do you think? can i do the same workout as the kettle bell using the weights.

i personally think that i need a kettle bell but i am getting nagged by my husband because of all of the excercise equipement that i have – i just love working out and every thing about health and fitness.

any way looking forward to hearing from you soon.



Kettle Weights on Healthbeat

October 8th, 2009

Check out this kettle weights video that aired on the TV program Healthbeat in the USA. Doctor Barry Ramo tells us how Kettle Balls are making a comeback…but in a very different way.


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Kettle Weights and Body Weight Circuit

September 17th, 2009

Great kettle weights workout for those of you who are just starting out with kettle weights training.


Kettle Weights training For Women

August 27th, 2009
Download Kettle Weights for Women Ebook

Download Kettle Weights for Women Ebook

Sometimes kettle weights training is seen as a brutish and macho method of training and in some gyms it is but that should not deter women from giving it a try.  One of the best things about training with kettle weights is that you can do it in your own home and you don’t need a bunch of expensive weights equipment.  All you need is 2 kettle weights for an entire workout and you could even get away with only having a single kettle bell.  They are inexpensive and take up almost no room.  I’d better be careful, this post is starting to sound like the latest ab training device that you might find Chuck Norris endorsing at 3am on the shopping channel.

The physical benefits of training with kettle weights is the same for men and women.  One of the unique qualities is that you get excellent core strength improvement.  This is because lifting the kettle weights requires many of the smaller stabilizing muscles to work hard to provide balance and stability.  This is because lifting a kettle bell is a little bit more awkward than a regular evenly balanced dumbbell.  This is another reason some people won’t try them but in actual fact, it is one of its most important features.

Obviously there are physical differences between men and women so the weight of the kettle bell that women use will be lighter especially if just starting out.  Then again, this may not be the case if you already have a great base from lifting regular weights in the gym.

When starting out, the most important thing to focus on is technique.  First of all, this will ensure that you don’t hurt yourself during the workout but it also ensures that you get the best possible workout.

Kettle weights training is very effective if your goal is weight loss, or if you just want to tone up your figure.  Give it a try.  If you have any tips or advice for women starting off with kettle weights training then please share them in the comments box below.


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Kettle Weights Background

August 11th, 2009

Kettle Weights People have been training with Kettle Weights, also known as kettle bells, for centuries.  In fact, it was the Russians that first used the Kettle bell in the 1700’s.  What is a kettle weight? It is like a cannonball with a handle typically made from cast iron and you can is it and it alone for a full body workout.  I can’t think of many other pieces of fitness equipment that can give you such a workout on there own.  Let’s take a look at the background on this simple piece of equipment.  It has been used as the primary training tool for many soviet Olympic weight lifters including Zhabotinskiy and Vlasov.  As I stated earlier, they were initially used in Russia and the Russian armed forces trained with kettle bells to develop their strength, speed and physique.  Some of the top US military and law enforcement personnel started taking notice and began training their own teams with kettle weights.

One of the main reasons that kettle bell training is taking off in the USA is because it leads to total body conditioning because the various kettle bell exercises require the whole body to contract.  It is particularly good for athletes who are focusing on building on their core strength.  Working out with kettle weights engage many muscle groups at the same time increasing  strength, flexibility and stability all in one workout routine. The fact that they have become mainstream means that there are many training programs for kettle weights available for everybody at every level of fitness from absolute beginner who has never lifted a weight all the way to body builders.  This is great as it means the kettle weights can now be purchased in a large variety of weights for everyone and some can even have weight added to them as your strength increases.  Not to mention fantastic weight loss when combined with healthy eating.

For you beginners, when starting out, most women should start with a kettle ball weighing between 12 to 25 pounds and guys should start between about 25 to 35 pounds.  The best thing about it is that you only need a single kettle bell to do your entire full body kettlebell workout.  That’s it, one single piece of training equipment.  After a while, if you find that you could do with a bit more weight, buy the next heaviest kettle ball and either keep, sell or spread the good word on the benefits of training with kettle weights and give a friend your existing one.

Additional Resources:

  • Build Strength for Football Season – Do 3-4 sets of squats using a kettle bell or appropriate weight. Alternate your sets with a seated row, doing three sets. For the squat, make sure you stand with your feet body width apart, stand strong with your chest forward, …


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