Kettlebells are increasingly being used by athletes, the military and even film stars (as seen in the new ‘Rocky’ and used by the cast of “300").
So the Question you might ask… “So what are they and what can they do for me?”
Answer: - The kettlebell is a traditional Russian cast iron weight looking somewhat like a cannonball with a handle, used for gripping during exercise.
You’ll get a full body workout.
The kettlebell basics focus around three core lifts – the swing, snatch and clean and jerk. What links all these drills together is that they force the body to work as an integral unit. Power is generated from the legs, driven through the hips and expressed through the arms. Every single muscle is brought into play and every single muscle is worked hard.
Trains your fast twitch muscle fibres –
The core kettlebell drills focus on fast, explosive movements which focus on training your fast twitch muscle fibres. Muscle fibres can be divided into two types, slow twitch and fast twitch. Slow twitch muscle contracts at a slower rate. Traditional gym weight training routines concentrate on slow, controlled lifts. Missing are exercises that specifically work explosive movements – this is where the Kettlebell comes in!
Works those hips!
Your hips and legs are some of the strongest muscles in the body. Kettlebell ballistic drills work the glutes (bottom), hip flexors, abdominal region (stomach) and erector spinae (spine).
Improve grip Strength.
Kettlebells have a thick handle designed to enable ballistic pulling movement, which in itself is a great way of developing grip strength.
If you imagine a heavy weight in freefall with only your grip to stop it from crashing down, now imagine trying to pull the same weight back up over your head again.
Great demands would be put on your grip strength. This example should give you an indication on the grip demands of kettlebell training!