Category

Beginner-Kettlebell-Training

18 Most Frequently Asked Questions about Kettlebell Training

Which kettlebell weight/size should I buy?   Because kettlebell exercises use the whole body rather than just a few isolated muscles you will be surprised at how much more weight you can lift than usual. Women should begin with an 8kg (15b) and progress to a 12kg (25lb) and finally a 16kg (35b) for two handed swings. Men will start with a 12kg, progress to a 16kg and finally a 24kg (50lbs) for two handed swings.   Related: What size kettlebell do I need?     My main goal is fat loss, where should I start?   Kettlebell workouts, when performed correctly, use 100’s of muscles at a time and so not only burn lots of calories during the workout but also condition the muscles of the body increasing your metabolic rate. The Two handed Swing is your first main goal, not only will it target lots of muscle mass but it’s also very cardiovascular.   ​​​​​​​Related: How to Torch Fat in Less Time with Kettlebells     Are short workouts really best for fat loss?   Yes, there is lots of research now that shows full body short workouts are more effective than long slow cardio workouts. The benefits...
Read More

The Jerk

The kettlebell jerk is another overhead, ballistic kettlebell lift that uses more leg power and less upper body strength than the push press. This means that it is a more powerful lift and will allow you to perform more reps or get a heavier weight overhead than you can with the push press.   The Kettlebell Jerk is an excellent full body exercise that requires a high degree of coordination, timing, and the ability to generate maximum power in a short range of motion. Although it can be used for developing maximal strength, this movement is best suited for “work capacity,” or the ability to be strong, fast, and explosive over longer durations.   Along with the Long Cycle (also called Clean & Jerk) and Snatch, the Jerk is one of the primary events in Kettlebell Sport competition. It is most commonly coupled with the Snatch in the Biathlon event. In competition, athletes lift for five or ten minute sets for as many reps as possible with technical proficiency without putting the kettlebells down. KETTLEBELL JERK TECHNIQUE   The Jerk Has 5 Primary Technique Components: Half Squat 2. Bump 3. Undersquat 4. Stand to Lockout/Fixation 5. Drop to Rack Position   Here is a video of the full Double Clean &...
Read More

What size kettlebell do I need?

One of the most popular questions I get asked is: What size kettlebell weights should I buy or what is the best kettlebell weight for beginners? In this quick guide to kettlebell weight selection I’ll show you which kettlebell weights you should start with and exactly how many kettlebells you’ll need in the future. One of the biggest misconceptions is that kettlebells are used the same as dumbbells and therefore the weights must be the same or that you need a full set of every size working up incrementally to include every possible weight. Not to mention,  I feel that sometimes other trainers expect a lot from women or complete beginners in terms of upper body strength or those worried about injuries or existing conditions, this can mean that sometimes a lighter weight works better here. And then there is the type of kettlebell, in terms of the material and shape, all of which can play a large part in determining the best choice.   Watch this video on the best starting weight for kettlebell training:   All kettlebell exercises are based on full body movements so unlike dumbbell training there is very little isolation based exercises like bicep curls or...
Read More

The Queen of all Kettlebell Exercises: The Snatch

Kettlebell Snatch Overview   The QUEEN to the Kettlebell Swing KING or why not, the holy grail of full body exercises is the Kettlebell Snatch. You need to ensure you have an excellent Swing and have also mastered the Turkish Get Up before even contemplating this exercise.   Many people struggle to master kettlebell snatches. It’s daunting having a heavy weight above the head and the speed at which it gets there can be off putting too. There are also timing issues necessary for the Snatch to avoid banging the wrists and jerking the arm.   The KB Snatch works the entire body from head to toe and is considered a pulling movement. Taking the kettlebell from the top position, absorbing the weight and then changing momentum at the bottom takes a lot of energy. KB snatches are certainly a cardiovascular exercise although not as much as the High Pull because you can grab periods of rest at the top of the movement.   Watch a full demonstration and progressions of the Snatch: 5 Kettlebell Snatch Benefits 1 – Huge Fat Loss Exercise The snatch uses hundreds of muscles in just one movement. The more muscles you use the more energy required and subsequently...
Read More

Why Kettlebells are the Perfect at Home Workout

I started my kettlebell journey in my living room.   Actually scratch that, it actually started in a bar...  I mean, don't most things in Ireland?   I share this exact story on my podcast as I interview my now good friend Rosa who inspired me to join her online programmes and do her kettlebell videos on YouTube. And that is where my journey started.  After buying my plastic coated, sand filled kettlebells from Davina McCall from Argos, I swung my kettlebells in my living room and even though I knew I didn't do it as well as I could or as long as I should I was getting results really quickly such as leaner arms and a leaner midsection.   Listen to that podcast episode here: Episode 14: “How home based kettlebell training changed our lives”- from two star crossed kettlebell instructors with Rosa Coelho The kettlebell is an extremely versatile piece of training equipment to have at home. Kettlebells offer unique training benefits over dumbbells—the uneven weight distribution will challenge you to control the weight as you swing, press, or pull. What is a Kettlebell? Kettlebells are cast-iron ball-shaped weights with handles that come in a variety of weights....
Read More

[Free Workout] Access this FREE 4 Minute Beginner Kettlebell Home Workout

You may have noticed something different about my workouts. They are all short. In fact, most workouts are only 4 minutes. There is a very good reason why I keep my workouts short. I want you to finish them. I want you to build workout habits. Shorter workouts over a long period of time are far more effective and kinder on the body than longer, more insane workouts. If you have a busy and stressful life then the worse thing you can do is add a long workout to your day. Why? Long workouts are very stressful, they trigger large amounts of the stress hormones Adrenaline and Cortisol. These hormones create huge amounts of focus and are useful for avoiding very dangerous situations like running away from lions and tigers but are very demanding on the body’s resources. In a world where most people are already stressed out adding additional stress to the body is a recipe for disaster. Harder and longer workouts do have their place. You can use them when training for specific events or challenges but they are not sustainable for everyday use. I’ve said this many times before, the secret to getting strong, lean, fit and…

Read More

Beginners Guide to Kettlebell Training

 Why I wanted to write this guide   When I discovered working out with kettlebells my thoughts about exercise and fitness changed.  I went from someone who really did not like to exercise and hated the idea of the gym or getting sweaty to someone who looked forward to the chance to swing my bell, learn new moves, get stronger and challenge myself with heavier weights.  But the kettlebell lover I am today was once a beginner that didn’t even know how to pick it up, let alone swing it and I really wish that I had found one place I could go that would teach me all the basics I needed to know to make my learning curve shorter.  So well, here is my attempt at just that!   It seems that not a day goes by without a new exercise or fitness trend being revealed. Kettlebells are not a fitness trend or a gimmick, they have been around for 100’s of years and trusted by some of the best for the incredible results they can generate.   In fact, they are the forefathers of modern day weight training. But in my opinion, history or no, they are the perfect…

Read More

[Ultimate Squat Guide] 8 Squats you Need to Try with Kettlebells

Along with the kettlebell swing, the kettlebell squat is a huge exercise for hitting all those large muscle groups. Hitting these large muscle groups means a greater hormonal response along with metabolic effect. In other words, great for fat loss and strength building. Paying attention now? lol The Squat can be categorized as a pushing exercise, and so can be paired with the kettlebell swing for a dramatic effect. Most women I meet at first do not Squat well. The ability to squat well requires adequate stability, mobility, strength and movement patterning. Taking the time to work on these important squatting aspects will pay huge dividends for your squatting and ultimately your results.   Why you Need to Squat   Squatting is one of our fundamental movement patterns. Whenever you sit down or stand up you use the squatting exercise. If you drive a car then you need to squat and twist in order to get into the car. As a baby the squat is one of the main developmental movement patterns and watching youngsters move demonstrates how beautifully we all squat at a young age. Squatting opens and closes the joints of the ankles, knees, hips, and lower back,...
Read More

Ultimate Guide to the Kettlebell Swing

The Kettlebell Swing is the most important of all the kettlebell exercise but also the one that most of my goddesses struggle to master. And this is why I spend so much time on it with my beginner ladies. The kettlebell swing is based on the deadlift movement pattern and hits almost every muscle in the body.   “If you only had time to do one kettlebell exercise then the kettlebell swing would be my choice.”   Kettlebell Swing Overview The Kettlebell Swing should be thought of as a pulling movement. It targets the posterior chain and essentially you are loading and de-loading the back of the body as you accelerate and decelerate the kettlebell. Be warned the eccentric or deceleration part of the kettlebell swing is what causes muscle soreness so you could be walking like John Wayne for a few days following a good set of kettlebell swings!!     The kettlebell swing is a dynamic – explosive- movement. As the kettlebell descends from the top part of the movement gravity takes its toll and the overall weight of the bell increases, so a 8kg kettlebell will feel much heavier at the bottom of the kettlebell swing.   Also at the bottom of…

Read More

Why Women need to do Kettlebell Training

6 Benefits of kettlebell workouts for women   #1 Conditions muscle but won’t beef you up   One of the first questions I get asked is “Are kettlebells going to make me bulky?” and my answer is that I’ve been trying to get bulky for years! No honestly, you will enjoy being lean, toned whilst still keeping those curves. Effective kettlebell workouts for women are very dynamic and cardiovascular in nature. Although the resistance element of kettlebell training will condition existing muscles it will not cause a huge amount of muscle hypertrophy or muscle growth. Great news for women who wish to add muscle tone without the bulk Plus ladies, you don’t have to worry about looking like a bodybuilder, women have 100 times less Testosterone, the male growth hormone, so it is very difficult for women to put on too much muscle.   #2 Sculpts a Glorious Goddess body   Kettlebell training burns fat and increases muscle tone fast. Most of the exercises are multijoint (compound) movements that link the bottom half of the body with the top half via the core muscles. Great for your abs! The body recruits 100’s of muscles in order to control and maintain balance of…

Read More

Beginner Kettlebell Workout for Weight loss [FREE PRINTABLE]

The Benefits of Working with Kettlebells for Weightloss   You might be surprised at how many benefits lie waiting to be unleashed in this little powerhouse known as the kettlebell.  Let’s take a look at a few below.   1. Full-Body Burn Any time you work with kettlebells, you engage nearly every muscle in your body.  Now doesn’t that sound amazing! Even during the kettlebell swing, which at first appears to primarily work the arms, you’re actually working your core, glutes, back, shoulders, and quads. In fact, your power for the swing shouldn’t even come from your arms, but we’ll talk about that later.     2. Engages ALL the muscles The reason kettlebells engage so many muscles is due to the fact that just by holding one, your body immediately has to engage the stabilizer muscles in your core and low back to remain balanced. This becomes even more pronounced when you start to do asymmetrical kettlebell exercises, like single-handed swings, since they require even more core strength and balance to perform.   But the work doesn’t stop there. The explosive movement of the kettlebell swing, combined with all of these firing muscles, also gives us a hard-core anaerobic…

Read More

The Worst exercise for over 35s women and what you should be doing instead

So, I decided to become a personal trainer at the ripe age of 39.  I had been active and ‘fit’ for most of my life though never skinny and just the right side of slim. But I was never strong and as I hit 35 I started to notice fat in places I never knew I had places. So I continued my health geek studies and began reading and practicing in the pursuit of what makes us lose stubborn fat, by getting more healthy, living longer so we can get lean and strong and look and feel good along the way! Sound good? And through studying a lot on metabolism, hormones and your thyroid, was I able to understand this and can now share this with you. What I am going to say here might fly in the face of what you know or believe or it might sound like too much effort and heck I just want to be skinny. But this is the end game, I can get you a lean and slim body but you can get so MUCH more than just that. What about a life’s vehicle that will take you into your 60s and 70s...
Read More